Game Dev Tycoon
is a casual business sim game. From the post-console crash of the 80s to modern gaming scene, you run an indie game studio from your garage, aiming to become a world-renouned developer team.Pros
: You progress through different location, from your garage, to small office, to upgraded small office, to a larger office allowing expansions. Plenty of freedom in game type, select one (or later two) genre, a theme (from a huge amount), a target audience, a game engine (which you develop as you research new technologies and assemble new engines) and a platform (allowing multi-platform later in the game). You can hire additional staff members (while keeping a balance of design and technology), train them, and specialize them if the various fields you focus on through the various development stages. As you progress through the years, the game parodies events from actual gaming history, a nice wink to “old school” gamers.Cons
: The game is very, very simplified. There is no clear competition, no way to determine how much you concentrate on tech use (besides selecting whether or not you use them at all), no way to grow to a larger company (the likes of which, say EA did, from a small indie studio to one of the largest publishers). Topic/genre/target audience combinations are fixed no manner how good your game’s specs are (and I’m sure you can think of actual games that broke those conventions and were great successes). The difficulty grows with your success: hit a 10/10 game and make your life hell for the next few games until you develop better techs and train your team more, until you eventually peak and can’t continue without restarting a new game.Verdict
: This is a fun and addictive game! Sure, there are games that dig in deeper into realism (I’m looking at you, GamersGoMakers), but if you just want a casual game you’ll play an hour or two (or more) at the time, give this one a try!