AdVenture Capitalist is an incremental “clicker” game created by Hyper Hippo Productions. It uses the same draw that most other “clicker” games use; you start with nothing and create an empire. In AdVenture Capitalist you start as a simple lemonade stand owner, and within an hour of playtime can earn over 50 million dollars. However, your enjoyment of the game completely depends on whether or not you enjoy the genre.
“Clicker” games are usually a love-or-hate affair. The gameplay itself is incredibly minimal. Often times the most interaction you will have is consistent tapping of the same button. This genre is widely used on mobile and in the independent PC market. In fact, I’m hard pressed to think of any other clicker games for modern consoles. It’s a good thing then, that AdVenture Capitalist is one of the best available.
To be completely honest, I’m not a huge fan of incremental games. I’ve played a few, but never really spent much time on any one game in particular. When it comes to clickers, time is the biggest component. Therein lies the biggest issue for me with these games (and by default, AdVenture Capitalist). There’s barely any gameplay to speak of, and most of the perks have you clicking less.
In AdVenture Capitalist, you press tap a button as often as possible to gain money. You then spend that money on new businesses. There’s a rinse and repeat loop when it goes beyond that. However, you can use your hard-earned cash to hire managers (see above picture). I really enjoyed the clever references to popular culture, with “Admiral Snackbarr” being one of my favorites. If you purchase a manager, they will click the button associated with their business for you. What this means is that instead of pressing a button to earn cash, you watch a bar fill up. Managers even earn you money offline, so you’re free to turn off the game and play something else. I expect a bit more out of a game than that. In my opinion, the game being played for you is a negative in this scenario, not a positive.
It is important to note that these games are meant to be played for short sessions, and returned to over time. Think of AdVenture Capitalist as a neat virtual bank account to check, but rarely interact with. It’s nice to see some small customization options like the ability to gain “swag” and reset your businesses with angel investments. However, these options are scattered in menus that are mainly occupied by micro transactions. I’m not against micro transactions as a principle, but I’m incredibly annoyed when they overpopulate my menus. These are also the “pay to win” variety, where dropping real money will greatly increase your fake money quickly.
There’s some interesting late game content though, which definitely spices up variety as the game grows stale. You’re able to trade in your “earth” money for space currency, which allows you start business on other planets. It truly is the most accurate capitalism simulator in that regard. Jokes aside, that’s truly the entirety of this game: get money. There’s little gameplay to speak of, it’s mostly just menu clicks. There’s no graphical prowess to speak of or to wish for, as the visuals boil down to various menus. The audio is incredibly simplistic. There’s a thirty-second music loop that replays indefinitely, and when you click something there’s a satisfying “pop” noise. Beyond that, there’s nothing else of true note.
AdVenture Capitalist isn’t bad, it’s just repetitive. There’s nothing inherently wrong with the game, I just don’t see the appeal. I know that there is a market for these games though, as this game has seen huge success on other platforms. In fact, it’s probably the best incremental game I’ve played (but that doesn’t mean much). I know this review may come off as confusing, but that’s probably because this game confuses me. If you like watching virtual numbers go up with barely any input, you’ll definitely enjoy AdVenture Capitalist. If you enjoy a good carrot-dangling treadmill, this game also does that well. There’s plenty of reasons to love this game, but if you’re not a fan of the genre, there’s plenty of reasons to dislike it as well. I fall somewhere in the middle, so I can’t honestly praise or insult it. If there’s anything I can leave you with, it’s this…
In the time it took me to write this review (approximately 15-20 minutes), I was able to make over 50 billion virtual dollars and buy a virtual oil company. I pressed one button in that entire time (to buy the oil company). I looked at the screen twice. That sums up AdVenture Capitalist perfectly. Now you have to decide if that sounds fun or not.
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