Owner Mode in games?

Can anyone here recommend any capitalism/management games that have a well developed “owner” mode. That is, one where you try to determine stock price or company success by controlling costs, production, distribution dealing with unions, etc.?

I’m not very learned in the management games outside of SimCity. Any suggestions/whithering sarcastic remarks are welcome.


I’m assuming you’ve tried Capatalism II?

It’s the only game I can think of that is boring enough to actually get used by business schools.

Try Railroad Tycoon II; it’s got a minimal stock model, but it’s actually fun. That’s more than I can say for Capitalism.

Cool. I’ll give them both a look. Thanks for the responses. :)

I know nothing about it, but I saw a kid buy “Big Biz Tycoon” in my Moonbase Commander hunt the other day.

I probably shouldn’t have been so pithy in my response. To be quite honest, I’m a huge fan of “economic” type games.

Although Capitalism II was just way to difficult and unfun for me, I have a few other titles to recommend:

Patrician II: 4/5 stars (StrategyFirst)
The Corporate Machine: 3/5 stars (Drengin.net)
Industry Giant 1: 4/5 stars (JoWood)
Industry Giant 2: forthcoming in September (JoWood)
Traffic Giant: 3/5 stars (JoWood)
Monopoly Tycoon: 2/5 stars

The undisputed best economic game ever though is definitely Railroad Tycoon II. You can get the Platinum version for 10 bucks now I think.

What was the name of that game, played a bit like economic Civ but not nearly as interesting. Trade Empires, Trade Empires 2 or something?

Yes! Trade Empires! How could I have left that out. I loved that game, although most of the reviews (even the plagiarized ones) said that it wasn’t that great.

Trade Empires was alright, but I way preferred Patrician II, which was mentioned above. Ship trading vs. land trading – there are demos available of both, so check them out – but it was more interesting, to me.

I tried the Patrician II demo, but found the learning curve really steep. For a strategy junkie, that’s saying something. Would playing Patrician I make the process a little easier?

I never played the first. :)

The learning is steep, that’s true. There’s a whole lot to do. But I had a blast even with the demo, before I got the retail version. (And multiplayer can be a lot of fun, if you have a book handy to read while you’re sailing from town to town, as in multiplayer you can’t speed that process up…)

To me, it was worth time invested. But everyone’s different, so I’d recommend spending a bit more time with the demo, and checking out the demo for Trade Empires – which was, in its own right, pretty fun – before you buy either one. Or Capitalism II. :)

Industry Giant 1: 4/5 stars (JoWood)
4/5? The game is on the “fun” side but didn’t have enough depth to keep me playing it long.

The Corporate Machine: 3/5 stars (Drengin.net)
eh. big eh. With an award for funniest line in documentation. Instead of having some negative effect for an action, they just made it awkward to use by putting it on another screen. I forget the exact quote but it made me laugh for a week.

Industry Giant 2: forthcoming in September (JoWood)
There is a demo out for this, looks a little better.

Also tropico is close to the feeling of running a corporation. But you might want to consider who they hire before you buy one of their games. Seems they will pick up any trash off the street.


Agreed on Tropico. I love that game. Still play it from time to time.

I’ll throw SimGolf in the ring, too, 'cause it’s similar enough style that, if you haven’t tried it, you probably should.

About Patrician II…definitely more fun than Trade Empires. The learning curve is definitely very steep though.

There were a couple of sites that had some good strategy guides to get you started, but the best one “The Crayer” seems to have disintegrated back into the internet plasma from whence it came.

Check ou this site though:
Patrician World

As far as Industry Giant and Corporate Machine go, I’m just a huge sucker for economic games…although I really didn’t like Monopoly Tycoon even though most people did.

If I was a game reviewer, plagiarist or otherwise, you’d have to subtract a star, point, medal, percent, or finger from my review (depending on your review metric) because all my economic game reviews would be biased.