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Tycoon Games – the best budget simulation games on PC

So are you looking for some decent tycoon games? Whether you’re looking for something more straightforward or a complex and nuanced economic / business simulation game, there are plenty of options to choose from right now, across a range of themes. It’s a classic genre that has had a lot of love since its inception, with sequels and new blood galore.

While there are plenty of classic tycoon games we could talk about – many of which actually have ‘tycoon’ in the name – we’ve decided to focus on the modern highlights because it’s a genre that constantly receives new versions and new ideas. We’ve also kept the definition relatively broad, as there are many games that you might not consider strictly “tycoon” games but have strong business or economic themes with the mechanics to back them up.

From criminal underworlds and banana republics to high seas trade and commerce all the way to the final frontier, here are ten tycoon games we think you should check out if you’re looking to see what the top picks are in this space. We’ll probably keep updating this list as we go, so be sure to check it back regularly.

Tycoon games

Here are some of the best business simulation games:

  • Port Royale 4
  • Trading company outside the world
  • Empire of Sin
  • Tropic 6
  • Two-point hospital
  • Evolution of the Jurassic World
  • Anno 1800
  • Underside of planet
  • Game Dev Tycoon
  • Titan Industries (Early Access)

Port Royale 4

The latest in a long legacy of serious business simulations, Port Royale 4 puts you in charge of a trading company operating in the Caribbean at the height of colonial expansion in the region. You start with a single ship and must travel from port to port doing smart trades and avoiding pirates.

As you gain wealth and reputation, you can take out charters for entire cities and create an empire spanning the entire Caribbean with fleets of merchant and war ships. You will spend most of your time serving your home country – like England, France, or Spain – but if you become powerful you can become truly independent, as long as you survive the War of Independence. which follows.

Alien trading company

It’s a favorite on our list of the best RTS games, but it’s making a comeback here as it’s essentially a game about expanding your economic might and running an interstellar business. There’s a surprisingly complex business model here, with over a dozen resources to follow, along with a player-driven marketplace that will determine what is worth investing in and what isn’t. It also has a pretty cool single player campaign, if multiplayer or sandboxing isn’t your style.

Alien trading company has plenty of DLC available, including one that changes the setting from Mars to one of Juipiter’s moons – Io. The developer has since created the historic 4X Old World game.

Chicago at night in Empire of Sin tycoon game

Empire of Sin

While this mafia-themed strategy game still finds its feet, it has a healthy dose of ‘tycoon’ in its DNA because, in addition to engaging in turn-based gang-to-gang warfare, you try also to run a crowd business too.

From a few humble underground bars to a city-wide criminal empire, you must expand your rackets and booze production to keep Chicagoans happy during America’s Prohibition Era. Rival gangs will also be looking to grow their own businesses, and it’s up to you whether you try to coexist, cooperate, or take them down yourself. Check out our Empire of Sin review to find out more.

Tropic 6

It’s just as much a city-building game as it is a business / tycoon game, but however you want to slice it up, it’s one of the more recent management experiments of the past decade. . As the newly appointed (life) president of a fledgling banana republic, it is your job to transform what was once a former colonial outpost into a global economic and tourism powerhouse.

Related: The best management games on PC

You need to attract new immigrants, take care of your existing population, harness your island’s natural resources, and create idyllic tourist spots to attract wealthy travelers. You can even engage in international diplomacy, pit major powers against each other, and reap as many benefits as possible. Be careful though, dictators are only too tolerated, and it’s over if you are deposed by rebels.

While we would recommend Tropico 6 as the most recent entry, Tropico 4 and 5 are also great – you can’t really go wrong no matter which one you choose.

Several hospital buildings in chaos in tycoon game two-point hospital

Two-point hospital

Spiritual successor to Theme Hospital, Two Point Hospital has all the wacky sense of humor and exaggerated visualizations of medical practice like the original Bullfrog, but with an updated design and the unique twist of Two Point Studio.

Set in the fictitious “colon county” setting, you must build a health center from scratch, balancing your patients’ needs and your bank balance while facing the minefield of a system. private health care. Experience some unique and wacky illnesses that will need to be cured, and make sure to keep your staff happy too! Keep an eye on Two-point campus, a University / Education themed management game coming in 2022.

A wide shot of a theme park in the roller coaster of the game tycoon planet

Underside of planet

If Two Point Hospital is the successor to Theme Hospital, then Underside of planet aims to be the successor to the “OG” tycoon games, RollerCoaster Tycoon. Frontier Developments attempts to create the ultimate theme park simulator, with intricate tools to create the most ambitious rides – even real world ones – as well as in-depth simulation to run the park however you see fit.

The studio has also invested heavily in community sharing tools, so that while you’re not the most creative thinker, you may be able to find something to inspire you on your own theme park trip. There is also a Frontier safari park game, called Planet Zoo, if you like that instead.

Two dinosaurs wandering in Jurassic World Evolution tycoon game

Evolution of the Jurassic World

Probably the least business-conscious on the list, creating and running your own version of Jurassic Park is still at the heart of The evolution of the Jurassic world premise. First, you’ll need to bio-design your new dinosaurs and create enclosures for them, before you can then expand with dedicated tourism and entertainment facilities.

Espionage and natural disasters will all make things difficult for you, and should the worst happen, your management skills will be put to the test as you try to contain the problem before it all falls apart. There’s a dedicated story-based mode that walks you through a tailored narrative, with sandbox options as well. Keep an eye out for the sequel – Jurassic World Evolution 2 – coming in November 2021.

Anno 1800

Much like Tropico, the Anno series has as much to do with building cities as it does with economics, but there is a healthy business part when you set up production lines and supply chains, tapping into your environment at the same time. both in the old world and the new world.

The 1800’s specific twist to the series involves the impact of industrialization on a society, as well as having you run two cities at a time – one in the New World and one in the Old World, which requires the need to secure trade routes and supply lines between where raw materials originate and where they are manufactured. It also has a pretty robust naval combat part, if you’re looking for high-stakes action at sea as well. Read our Anno 1800 review for more details.

A video game studio in tycoon game game dev tycoon

Game Dev Tycoon

As well as being the only game on this list to actually use “tycoon” in its title, this is also a fairly specialized topic. If you’ve always wanted an abstract, top-notch view of what it’s like to run a business dedicated to video game design, Game Dev Tycoon It’s a pretty nice way to experience it.

Starting out on your own in your basement and working your way up to a fancy office with real employees, you first need to choose the game you want to design – including what genre, engine to use, additional features, and more. . must continue to work until the end.

The pressure comes from the fact that the money keeps rolling – every month you have to pay yourself and your staff, and as you progress in the game some projects will come from publishers, who have set targets. time limit. It’s a surprisingly complex, but also simplistic, window into what is a vibrant and multifaceted world.

tycoon game industries of titan, featuring Juipiter as a backdrop

Titan Industries (Early Access)

While it’s a bit presumptuous to add a pre-release game to a roster like this, Industries of Titan is already shaping up to be a very interesting twist in the business / tycoon genre. Tasked with starting a new adventure on Titan’s moon, this management game plunges you into a highly corporate dystopian future where you must not only tame Titan’s hostile climate, but other factions looking to bring you down as well.

You do this by importing unlucky people and putting them to work – some will be working in your growing factories, some will be in the trash cleaning up mysterious ruins, others will just watch ads all day for that you can earn money. It’s dark, but it has some pretty neat mechanics that make it one to watch – read our Steam Early Access impressions to find out more.

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