18 Resource Management Games for Small Business Owners

resource management games

Games can help entrepreneurs hone various skills. For example, some games give you access to resources that you must use wisely — similar to how you must manage resources in business. If you’re looking for a resource management game to sharpen your skills in this area, read on for a guide.

What is a Resource Management Game?

A resource management game is one where the player is given a finite amount of necessary items that they must allocate wisely. For example,

How Resource Management Games Could Help You in Business

Resource management games aren’t just for fun. Here are some ways they may support your business:

  • Sharpen management skills: Business owners need to get creative when managing limited resources. Games help you think differently and turn this into a fun process.
  • Help with budgeting: All business owners must stay on budget. This involves many of the same skills used in resource management games.
  • Foster collaboration: Multi-player games can serve as a team-building exercise.
  • Exercise your brain: Business owners can easily get burnt out from constant decision-making. These games still require brainpower, while providing a break from actually running your business.

Best Resource Management Games

Resource games can sharpen your management skills, support your team, and provide a fun hobby. Here are some of the best management games for business owners.

1. Prison Architect

Prison Architect requires building and maintaining a maximum-security prison. In addition to containing inmates, this management game requires managing federal money and applying for grants to maximize resources and profit. Various challenges may arise throughout each level. So you need to constantly adapt. Prison Architect is available on Steam, Gog, Epic Games, Nintendo Switch, Xbox, and PlayStation.

2. Surviving Mars

In Surviving Mars, you’re responsible for building a colony and surviving on Mars with limited resources. This not only requires managing what you do have but also requires resource gathering in an unfamiliar environment. This game may be especially appealing to space enthusiasts. But the concepts used to play are applicable to several areas of business and life. Play on Steam, Epic Games, Gog, Xbox, and PlayStation.

3. Megapolis

Megapolis is a simulator where you build your own city. You develop your own strategy for everything from buildings and famous landmarks to providing power to residents. Since city building is so multi-faceted, there are several areas that may require your attention at once — just like running a business. The city building game is available on iOS, Android, and Steam.

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4. Jurassic World Evolution

Jurrasic World Evolution is a video game where you manage all aspects of a Jurassic World theme park. You not only plan the attraction, but you also must deal with challenges as they arise. Since it’s part of a recognizable brand, the graphics and finishes in this game are more polished than many other strategic management games. Jurassic World Evolution is currently available for Nintendo Switch, Xbox, PlayStation, and Steam.

5. Two Point Hospital

Two Point Hospital is a strategy game where players build and manage their own hospital. You design the space, attempt to cure illnesses, and manage your staff and resources. It’s available for PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, and Steam.

6. Stardew Valley

Stardew Valley is a game where you manage your own farm and learn to live off the land. You can customize nearly all aspects of your surroundings and even interact with other farmers to share resources or tips. It’s available on Steam, Gog, Humble Games, Xbox, PlayStation, Nintendo Switch, iOS, and Android.

7. Train Valley

Train Valley is a puzzle strategy game where you manage the construction of railways and other locomotive resources. There are various locations and types of trains available. So this game may appeal to train enthusiasts and history buffs. You can play on Steam, Humble Games, and iOS.

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8. Foundation

Foundation is a medieval city-building game. You create your own monuments and can even interact and share resources with other players. It’s an entirely open world, so there’s a lot of room for creativity and personalization. But you must still manage finite resources when creating your world. Foundation is available to play on Steam.

9. Planet Coaster

Planet Coaster gives you the ability to create and control your own roller coaster theme park. You can expand over time and serve customers as they explore your park. The PC version is available from Steam and Frontier. And the console version is available on Xbox and PlayStation. So there are various options depending on your preferred gaming style.

10. Dungeon Keeper

Dungeon Keeper is a strategy game where you raid underworld dungeons to find more resources that you can use to protect your own fortress. The strategy in this game may help entrepreneurs think creatively about gathering resources that they don’t already have access to. It’s available on iOS, Android, Amazon, and PC.

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11. Hay Day

Hay Day is a mobile game where you build and manage your own farm. As one of the top farming games available, you grow crops, manage animals, and take trips into town to purchase supplies and speak with townsfolk. The purpose is to build a sustainable operation and keep your farm thriving through various challenges. You can even connect with other players on iOS and Android devices.

12. Escape Simulator

Escape Simulator is a virtual escape room team-building game. Play by yourself or with others, using only the resources in the room to find a way to escape. There are different levels to provide constant challenges and allow you to adapt to different environments. This type of game is especially useful if you want to foster resource management and problem-solving skills among your entire team. Escape Simulator is currently available on Steam.

13. Business Board Game

Business Board Game is a mobile strategy game. It’s one of the best business board games you can play on your phone, especially if you want to connect with others in a virtual competitive environment. The object is to collect as much money and property as possible from your fellow players. The mobile game is available on iOS and Android.

14. Big Chief

Big Chief offers a lighthearted take on business strategy games. You build a company, earn money, and manage your own team. There is a lot of hiring and firing. And you may even get fired yourself. Basically, it offers almost a parody of corporate life, but one where you still try to manage resources to the best of your ability. This is one you may try if you’re just looking for an easy way to spend your spare time after work. It’s currently just available on iOS.

15. No Man’s Sky

No Man’s Sky is a beautiful game where you explore an alien planet and various destinations throughout outer space. The goal is to work with your team to build bases across the universe. With hours of story that you can work through at your own pace, it’s one of the most relaxing games on the list. Play on Steam, Microsoft, Xbox, and PlayStation.

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16. Football Manager Mobile

For sports fans, Football Manager Mobile allows you to run your own soccer team. Find the best way to allocate limited resources toward players and other important game factors. You can even play against others to see how your team stacks up. The mobile version is available on iOS and Android devices. And there’s also a PC and console version available on Steam, Epic Games, Windows, Nintendo Switch, and Xbox.

17. Transport Tycoon

Transport Tycoon is a video game series where you set up transportation infrastructure around your own town. These tycoon games teach you how to think creatively and solve problems surrounding transportation management. But many of the concepts may also be relevant to managing businesses or other organizations. There are various levels with different problems to solve. So it’s ideal if you want to be constantly challenged.

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18. Fiz – Brewery Management Game

If you’ve ever dreamed of owning a brewery, Fiz – Brewery Management Game should be at the top of your list. Like other business simulation games, you’re responsible for creating a brand and product and managing your budget. But it all has a beer-related spin. This resource management game is available for Android devices.

What is the best resource management game?

The best resource management games may vary based on your preferences and the level of challenge you’re looking for. However, some top options include Megapolis, Stardew Valley, and Jurrasic World Evolution. To find the best management games for your preferences, browse the entire list above and try the ones that appeal to you, or watch game plays and review videos on YouTube for a closer look.

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Annie Pilon Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends and has been a member of the team for 12 years. Annie covers feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. She has a bachelor’s degree from Columbia College Chicago in Journalism and Marketing Communications.