Good Online Idle/Background Games?

I’m looking for a game I can play in the background and check up on during downtime at work. I haven’t been able to play games much due to a newborn child, and I just need to scratch that itch even if it’s only for a minute at a time when I have a free second at work. I figure clickers would be an easy route to go, but I’m open to all suggestions. Basically anything turn based or that I could stop at a moments notice if a new job comes in. Can’t download anything on my computer so that’s sort of limiting.

Looking forward to any responses, cheers!

I’m a big fan of “swarm simulator”. It’s a clicker/idle game that still tracks progress even if you have the window closed, so you don’t have to have it running all the time.

For clickers, I think AdVenture Capitalist is still the best one out there, or at least the purest. It doesn’t layer secondary systems on top the way Clicker Heroes or Tap Titans does (it’s been a few months since I checked in on any of these, so that may have changed.) Just make as much money as fast as you can.

The Simpsons Tapped Out and Fallout Shelter are both decent idlers if you like the source material. Fallout Shelter is a little more active and has more of an endgame than TSTO, but you don’t get to hear Ralph say “I’m a donkey! Quack, quack!” in Fallout Shelter. Big drawback to TSTO is that it takes up over 1GB and just keeps getting bigger.

Honestly, when it comes to clickers, Cookie Clicker is still my favourite. I lot of more recent clickers/idle games build off of it, but I appreciate the simplicity.

I never liked AdVenture Capitalist as much as other people with the dark clicker sickness. I’m not sure it’s the best tailored to what you want, since it’s more of a check once per day than once every 30 minutes kind of game.

I really liked Trimps is that helps explain what kind of clickers I’m into. Haven’t played Cookier Clicker in a while but maybe it would be good to dive back in.

Pretty much anything by Kairosoft in my opinion. They all play kind of similar but each one has it’s own twist based on the theme. For example the Grand Prix one you manage a race team so you need to hire/train staff while also upgrading your cars where as in the Dungeon Village you run a typical fantasy village where heroes show up to fight monsters so you need to give them better gear while upgrading your village. All of them are definitely games you can just leave running on a phone then check on every 15-20 minutes make some minor changes then set it down again. Some are more involved then others.


The two I really like are A Dark Room and Kittens Game. Both are minimalistic clicker games that end up going in interesting places.


Candy Box and Candy Box 2 are both classic idle games that expand in really cool ways.

Spaceplan is another rad clicker with a lot of style. There’s a paid version on Steam, but the free one is pretty substantial too.


Earthtongue is really cool. Its the only game I have on my office computer cuz stuff can happen in the background and I can check in and do some maintenance whenever there’s a dead moment.


A Dark Room also has an iOS port that’s pretty good, if you have access to your phone.

(and I just started up spaceplan, and it’s awesome)

Earthtongue seemed cool but I couldn’t figure out how the ecosystem worked beyond a few of the interactions. Do you have a handle on how the thing works or do you sort of mess around with it like I was doing?

The game gets deeper than its look would imply I think? I have a handle on a few of the interactions, but for the most part I mess around and let it do its thing in the background.

Idling to Rule the Gods is the clicker that has hooked me the most. It may look intimidating, but there’s a lot to explore and always something to fiddle with. Oh no, I think I just got sucked in again.

That’s my feeling too. It’s fun to just place stuff and watch the different species come up and go down.

I started playing A Dark Room the other day and it scratched the itch I was looking for. Unfortunately, I got to the roguelike part and that requires a little more attention than I can give lol. I’ve meant to try Candy Box so that’s a good recommendation.

I kept playing anyway and damn is this a game good. Cleared the entire map, wish there had been some sort of reward for doing that. Might be worth checking out the app for the expanded game.

Did you find everything in A Dark Room? I’m pretty sure you get an ending if you find the spaceship? But the iOS app is pretty neat. You also get an alternate ending if you don’t build any huts, or prevent it from becoming an idle game, which is kinda interesting.

Oh yeah, I totally did that. I wasn’t clear that I had actually “beat” the game. Clearing the map got my tons of Alien Alloy though so it made the final space flight really easy. Also I’m ashamed to admit how long it took me to realize you don’t get random encounters when on the road between outposts lol.

I’ve been checking out Idle RO, an idle game based on the Ragnarok Online IP. I’m not much for nostalgia but the wave it sent was too high to resist.

It’s pretty good, you don’t have to spend your time clicking, just checking out various stats and do some stuff from time to time. Only issues are that there are too many currencies and it’s a battery hog.

There’s a chat feature too, and so far everyone has been nice. Might be a cool game for those who spent countless hours on Ragnarok Online farming to get cool pets

I ended up finding the prefect game for this in the end.

“Basketball GM is a completely free sports management simulation game. You are the general manager of a basketball team, tasked with building your roster to compete for a championship while managing your finances. As of now, your goal can be whatever you want: winning the most championships, making the most profit, developing players from rookies to stars, etc. You can make an unlimited number of different leagues from the dashboard, each one with a different set of random players.”

I’ve sunk far too much time into it. Once you find out the strategies it gets kind of samey, but the developer is constantly updating the game and adding new features. If you have any interest in basketball or sports management this game is a great way to kill some time.