I'd like to see a car tycoon game done right

I know a car tycoon game was released, but the reviews were horrible. I think this could make a great game if done right. You would start with a small car dealership and gradually build your business by buying and selling cars. Or you could start with a well established dealership. You would hire salesmen who possess different attributes such as sales ability, intelligence, honesty, etc. The game should be realistic, and reflect real life economics and include concepts such as hold backs, dealer incentives, commisions, etc. You could even micromanage sales and employ real life sales strategies such as stalling, making the customer feel sorry for you, putting in high price options, selling extended warranties, etc. You would have to advertise and decide how much money to spend on different advertising media. You would have to determine what cars to sell and deal with manufacturers. Many scenarios are possible such as competing against other car dealers, selling a certain amount of cars in a month, or making a certain amount of profit in a year, etc. Perhaps there could be a car design minigame as well. You could even design your own car lot. Salesmen could improve over time and win salesmen awards. I see a lot of fun possibilities with this idea, but since the Car Tycoon game did so poorly, will we ever see another one?

Ugh. The business of selling cars just sounds so tedious to me. It’s enough of a hassle in real life that I’d hate to have to play a game about it. :)

FWIW, Stardock’s Entrepreneur/Corporate Machine was a great game about making cars (you could also choose from a couple of other industries). It was played from a more strategic level that what you’re describing, ioticus, more about the industry as a whole than specific dealerships.

Check it out. Does this do anything for you:


That doesn’t do much for me because I’m less interested in the car design aspects and more interested in the buying and selling aspects. I might look into that because it appears to be the only game in town.

If you’re just interested in the buying and selling gameplay mechanics, why does the subject matter? You might as well just play a good Tycoon game, like Monopoly Tycoon.

Actually, that’s just the research screen, which is only one part of Entrepreneur/Corporate Machine. Most of the game is a territory battle involving sales, advertising, and cards that represent dirty tricks. It’s a great combination of abstraction and concrete details like you get in that research screen.

Anyway, I wasn’t really trying to sell you on them so much as point out that they were a pretty cool take on a potential Car Tycoon angle.


I am interested in the car sales business, so the subject does matter. I’m just not as interested in designing cars.

One of the first PC Gamer demos was for a car management game called Detroit. I never did buy the full version, but the demo was a lot of fun.

Yeah, Detroit is a good, old classic.


I’ve got an Amiga version or two, also. Dunno if I finally managed to find
a non-German version :P

I’m curious too. If you are only interested in the selling part, wouldn’t one widget be just as good as another? Lemonade Stand has everything you want, except for the cars.

Ugh, Detroit was horrible. It’s biggest failing was one right out of the gate: You had to start your company at the turn of the century. There was no way to launch in, say, 1950 or so when technology got a whee-bit more interesting.

You could do a much more interesting car empire game today; the design aspect could be particularly cool in 3D. Lots of online potential for trading car designs.

That and the tech part was nuts. You would start with these really old tech designs and find a few that would sell. You keep researching tech and make better and better cars, but guess what. The car that is selling is that old tech design from 30yrs ago with a wheezy 4 cylinder and leather strap brakes even though you have it priced HIGHER than your new designs!

I was so let down by Detroit. I never could figure out what computation the AI was doing to determine customer buying–it was truely bizarre.

I’ll have to look up the stardock title

The difference is I don’t give a flying fuck about selling lemonade, but am interested in the car business. Why is this such a hard concept?

So basically it sounds like you’re looking for a “car industry” type sim… On a dealership or a manufacturer level?

Right. Message received. If anyone out there wants to make a car tycoon game aimed at random snappy/angry internet posters, they’ll have at least one sale…

If you wear a big toothy smile and slick back your hair, you could try living your dream instead.

Most of my dreams are illegal.

The last car I bought was sold to me by a fat balding man. I felt let down, especially because he smiled negative three times.

Kind of like you, Mr. ioticus. The smiling part, that is. I have no idea about the status of your stomach and hair. I hope that all is well with both. And such.

The difference is I don’t give a flying fuck about selling lemonade

How about hot dogs? Having to guess how many condiment units you’ll need to buy? mmmmmm…condiment units

Right, like a cross between Roller Coaster Tycoon (you build and manage car dealerships) and the Sims (you can control individual salesmen and inspect customers).

If you’re really interested in what you’re describing, ioticus, it’s already been made! In The Sims 2: Open for Business, you can create and manage a car dealership.

However, it might have too much Sims 2 baggage. You still have to deal with your Sims needs: social, sleep, food, etc. But it has employee management, layout design, customer interaction (including sales tactics), a business skill tree, and even crafting (although I don’t think the crafting stuff comes into play when you deal with cars).


Thanks, Tom, I own the Sims 2 (but never played it) and will look into it. I hope it’s fairly realistic.