I'm thinking of getting into game development and my friend and I have this idea for a game. We want to do some research on similar games, and I have noticed that games seem to fall under certain categories like "platformer", "shooter", "racing games" or similar.

Our idea is a multiplayer, mobile game where you and around 4-5 other players are placed in a session.

Every player is given a different role in a market (like a farmer to grow crops, miller to make flour out of crops, baker to bake bread, etc.). The players are supposed to sell goods to each other in order to earn money (or similar). The resources are produced/generated over time, so it's like Travian and other city building games when it comes to stuff happening over time.

You own a production facility (like a farm, mill, etc.) and if you have enough resources/money it produces some good every 10 min (arbitrary time for the example).

This happens even when the user is not playing. Then once in a while, you can check in, put some of your goods up for sale that others can purchase.

So it's a passive loop that simply generates resources every x minutes, and in addition, the players can put up their goods for sale when they feel like it.

But the game is not "infinite". When one of the players reaches a certain goal, the game session ends and the players are ranked (or something, it's still a rough idea).

So in this regard, it's more like Wordfeud or Chess where your next move depends on what the other players do and there is a way to win the game (be it a winning condition or time running out).

So the question is, does this kind of game fall under a specific category that we can research?

  • \$\begingroup\$ That sounds like an "idle game" for sure. I think @Philipp nailed the answer. I can't think of any better genre placement Except maybe "Management" was left out but still covered by your combination of "tycoon" and "economy". Which although not easy to search on it's own, there's an entire category for it on Steam, and that might help. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Apr 24, 2020 at 0:14

1 Answer 1


Games where the core gameplay loop is to just let the game play itself in the background for longer stretches of time and only occasionally returning to the game and making decisions are referred to as "idle games".

Games which focus on trading, managing a company and making business decisions are usually called "tycoon games" or "economy simulations".

When it comes to growing crops, farming games have developed into a whole genre of its own. That genre has often thematic overlap with the two categories mentioned above.

I am looking forward to playing your unique take on these genres.


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