Ah, the wonderful world of clicker games. Characterised as games where you click the mouse on something like fury to earn money, which can then be used to enhance the results of your clicks, (or to hire AI allies that will prevent RSI by clicking for you), these games have enjoyed a rise to popularity in recent times. A key feature of these games is that they work whilst turned off. Don’t have enough money for an upgrade? No problem! Turn the game off, go play Just Cause 3 and come back later. These games also have a feature where you can restart periodically to gain permanent bonuses which make tearing through earlier parts of the game a breeze. I have grabbed a few of these games from Steam to take a look and at the end of the article I will share my top pick of games of this type. Now, on to the games!
In most clickers (that I have played) the objective is to rain doom on enemies with outrageously high DPS, especially after a few restarts. AdVenture Capitalist does things differently, because the aim is simply to make money. Filthy amounts of money, in fact. This game was my introduction to idle games and I used to play it obsessively on my phone watching the dollars roll in. There are 10 types of business for you to invest in, each costing significantly more than the last and you can hire managers to run all of these businesses making this the ultimate exercise in idleness. Earning wads of cash attracts Angel Investors to your business which adds +2% to your profits for each angel after a restart. You can also sacrifice them to get even bigger bonuses for the current playthrough. In the mid-game, you can also send expeditions to the Moon and Mars to make even more money!
AdVenture Capitalist is is developed and published by Hyper Hippo Games, is available for Windows, Mac and Steam OS/Linux and can be found on Steam here.
This is a solid little clicker, where you take on cute little enemies one at a time, having to kill at least 10 enemies in a zone before facing a boss every fifth zone. The game is bright and cheerful with an impressive range of heroes to save your mouse fingers and the graphics are quite pleasing overall. However, there is one thing that really, really bugs me about this game and that is the notation of the money. 15,618B Gold? Surely that should be 15.6T Gold? This notation makes it difficult to determine what upgrades you can afford and annoys me so much that I can’t play the game for more than a few minutes without developing a twitch above my right eye. There is a scientific notation option but this is even more annoying. Anyway, my need for ordnung aside, this game is fun although progression feels much slower than in other games in this class.
Clicker Heroes is developed and published by Playsaurus, is available for Windows and Mac and can be found on Steam here.
Crusaders of the Lost Idols
Crusaders of the Lost Idols takes the traditional clicker format and adds new layers of strategy. Instead of having a list of heroes that all lay the smack down at the same time, Crusaders has a formation of up to 10 heroes, arranged bowling pin style on the field. Many of these heroes have abilities that affect others in the formation, such as Sasha the Fierce Warrior who can confer +40% DPS to characters in the column behind her. This means that you will need to play around to find the optimal formation of heroes, and you can save up to three formations of characters for easy switching. Over time you will unlock more heroes than you can fit on the field so you will need to experiment a bit, but bear in mind that heroes also gain XP for the amount of time that they spend in formation which makes them significantly more deadly. With Daily Challenges, levels laid out like quests and chests of sweet loot to open, this game feels like the perfect meeting of clicker and RPG, however, if you have an iffy internet be aware that this game needs to communicate with the Steam Web API to load.
Crusaders of the Lost Idols is developed and published by Codename Entertainment, is available for Windows and Mac and can be found on Steam here.
Pssst. Want a harem? Well, I’ve got the game for you! From the makers of Sakura Spirit comes this (definitely not safe for work) tongue-in-cheek clicker that aims to net you the harem of your dreams by subduing ladies (who have over 800 moans!) so that you can capture them. More seriously, this is a fairly standard clicker, you click, you get gold, you hire a crack team of harem fillers to click for you and you restart occasionally to get animal spirits that can be used to buy permanent upgrades. The enemies in this case are an endless stream of scantily clad women who sharply increase in toughness as you move through the various zones. There isn’t much else to say here, you can upgrade your fighters with abilities that automatically unlock once you reach the required level, but the lower level fighters become useless fairly quickly even with massive upgrades. This is one game that I have spend a little money on – to the right of the screen you can see your avatar and there are various outfits, hairstyles and weapons to purchase for a small fee from the Steam store. My avatar is modelling the Maid dress and one of the hairstyles from the Hairstyle pack (I also own the School Outfit) and it’s worth noting that these paid items have no effect on gameplay. I have no idea why, but this game just cracks me up!
Sakura Clicker is developed and published by Winged Cloud, is available for Windows and can be found on Steam here.
Tap Tap Infinity
This first person view clicker follows a similar format to all other clickers, but has some interesting tweaks that make it a lot of fun to play. The graphics are very cute and cuddly and although it’s heritage as a mobile game is clear, the port has been handled well. The game runs full screen by default and looks surprisingly crisp on a 24″ monitor. Tap Tap Infinity begins with the traditional mouse hammering, but you must defeat characters in combat before you can recruit them which is handled by having a boss every fifth stage. After you have defeated a character, they become available for hire – usually with a witty bio to go along with it. Another interesting tweak is that weaker characters can be boosted by levelling them over 200, so no character becomes utterly useless. There is also a story going on which makes the game more interesting to play rather than “here are some monsters, have fun”. Occasionally, you will pick up infinity tokens which can then be unlocked via a restart, where you can choose whether to keep them for a DPS boost or trade them for other boosts such as a gold boost. You also level up as you defeat monsters and it is fun to watch your own level rise on the back of your AI allies’ hard work.
Tap Tap Infinity is developed and published by Scary Bee LLC, is available for Windows and Mac and can be found on Steam here.
Time Clickers adds an FPS feel to the established formula. You and a small team of AI must free the world from the tyranny of brightly coloured cubes by shooting them until they explode, dropping money that can then be used for more booms. This game has a different feel to the other clickers and is in the same family as Time Rifters which is an FPS title where you can be your own team mates via manipulation of time. This connection is also important because there is no store in the game, no pay to win features, just a straight up fun title. Although the game appears simple, it is oddly compelling – fighting on to reach a slightly higher level gathering as many Time Cubes as you can, before starting a new timeline so you can do it all again much faster. The graphics are pleasing and the sound is well done too, although the music grates after an hour or so in a session. I think this one is different because it feels like you are making a difference with your presence, which is probably why I have so much game time on this one. In short, it’s fun, it’s simple, and seeing that insane DPS is satisfying.
Time Clickers is developed by Proton Studios Inc, is available for Windows, Mac and Steam OS/ Linux can be found on Steam here.
So, in conclusion, which one would I recommend? Well, all of these games have something to offer, but Time Clickers is my favourite because I find the gameplay the most compelling, with Sakura Clicker coming in a close second purely because I find it funny. Do you have any top clickers that you would like to share? Please drop a comment below, or join us on our Facebook group to have your say!