What are the best Tycoon simulation games of all time?


As much as we love jumping on Goombas or taking our JRPG nights to level 99, we might as well design and create a city, theme park, or zoo and make it run like a well-oiled machine.

This is where tycoon-style games come in, and while we all have a favorite game in the genre, defining it is a whole different matter as the scale of creation can range from a hospital to a solar system. whole.

For the purposes of this list, IGN Southeast Asia has decided to stick with games that are purely focused on the business, construction, and resource management aspects of the genre, with the only player having to deal with it all on the fly. bird.

So while one could argue that games like Harvest Moon and Stardew Valley can be considered tycoon-style games, their top-to-bottom RPG-lite elements disqualify them for this list. The Sims are in a similar boat, but since the whole point of this series is to just live life, we had to leave that out as well.

And with that out of the way, here are the best tycoon games of all time, in no particular order:

Dyson Sphere program

One of the latest games of its kind, Dyson Sphere Program is the mogul game for the astronomy enthusiasts among us. With players having to build a massive structure operating stars in outer space, with the energy generated by this titular Dyson sphere allowing players to create new types of technology. Definitely out of this world and highly recommended.

Tropic 4

This 2011 entry in the long-running Despot simulator series is certainly a unique tycoon game, as players aren’t exactly building something fun like a theme park or zoo, but instead run a small island nation. It involves military juntas, rebellions, and other factors related to being an evil dictator, which turns out to be a lot more fun than it should be.

Jurassic World Evolution 2

The media franchise that lends itself perfectly to the mogul genre, it took a while for fans to finally get the perfect Jurassic Park game that allows them to create their own dinosaur enclosure to their liking. True to its name, this game was a major evolution from the first Jurassic World Evolution in terms of gameplay and graphics.


The original city-building simulator, Will Wright hit the nail on the head when he created SimCity, which spawned all kinds of games, some of which are on this list. The 1989 original is still a marvel, especially compared to other games from that year. Without SimCity, the gaming industry as a whole wouldn’t experience the joys of city planning.

Hospital Theme

Famously created by Peter Molyneux of Fable Fable, Theme Hospital was an instant classic when it was released in 1997. As dark and austere as it can manage a hospital with terminally ill patients entering and leaving, Theme Hospital balances things with a hint of drought British humor, very close to Monty Python sketches.


If you wanted the opposite of Theme Hospital, the one that trades fun humor for a dark world, then Frostpunk is for you. This game has you create a huge steampunk town in an icy wasteland, while making sure your citizens are safe and can survive the harsh weather conditions. It’s a more hardcore version of an otherwise airy genre, which is pretty cool.

Game Dev Tycoon

One of the most meta video games of all time, Game Dev Tycoon is also billed as one of the smallest tycoon games ever made, as gamers will mostly work in an office, instead of a land mass. or a giant space zone. Still, any game that will take you from a small ’80s studio to a modern triple-A developer is a must-have for enthusiasts of the medium.

Roller Coaster Tycoon 3

The complete refinement of the theme park creator simulator, Rollercoaster Tycoon 3 was also the leap to the third dimension for the series. And while the sprite-based graphics were lovely, the third game featured a more immersive and realistic experience that was jaw-dropping in 2004.

Zoo Tycoon 2

Zoo Tycoon 2 and its Menagerie of Expansions featured a fully complete version of the Zoo Simulator experience, especially with its massive roster of unique animals to take care of. There was also a special first-person mode that really puts players in the shoes of their zookeepers. This particular charm is somewhat lacking in modern spiritual successors of recent years.


If there was one mogul game that was in desperate need of a modern day remake, it’s The Movies, a game that lets gamers run a Hollywood movie studio. This also includes making their own movies, which was a highlight of the game. It’s a shame we haven’t seen a modern version of this, and we certainly hope we can see a game that perfects everything. which The Movies introduced in 2005.


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