Ever since Cookie Clicker managed to convince us all to tap our way to a quadrillion cookies, the idle clicker genre has been going from strength to strength through titles including Adventure Capitalist and Tap Titans. With plenty of clicker fans here at Tag Towers, we decided to ask the team what they'd like to see next from this curiously addictive genre.
Ross McWilliam, QA Lead
I think the natural next step is to see idle mechanics merge with other game genres. Nonstop Knight already does this by meshing idle with action RPG gameplay and I know there are also some idle / sim crossovers out there. To me, the next step will be a distillation of the successful idle hooks into other genres that can widen the appeal.
The possibilities for this are pretty much endless. Imagine something like No Man's Sky where in order to reach new planets you had an upgrade and resource gathering system derived from idle mechanics. An idle side game could even fit nicely into FIFA, with your clubs finances and commercial interests being determined by a system in the style of Adventure Capitalist. you could the invest this money into buying players or back into business activities for example.
With a bit of imagination idle mechanics can be slotted in almost anywhere!
Donald Hicks, Game Programmer
I've been playing a lot of Tap Titans 2 and I think the one thing that is missing is any sense of loss. You can't really lose the game, and if you fail to kill a boss there is no consequences apart from having to wait. I still feel that losing is an important game mechanic and it's something that clicker games don't always implement.
Also, these games rarely have any focus outside of activities that fuel the core progression loop and I'd like to see more idle games deliver a progressing story or something else to build towards outside of the main gameplay loop.
Remi Boullerne, Senior Programmer
Idle clickers tend to distill games down into grinding for progression alone. As addictive as they can be I'd like to see more from them.
For example, I really enjoyed Tap Tap Builder and while at heart it's still a clicker, there's layers of strategy and complexity in there too. You can gain resources through sharing, advertisements or special buildings and hopefully future clicker games take these ideas onto the next level. Get more meta-game in there and add light management elements.