The thrill of playing a great tycoon game is unmatched by any other genre, as fans will attest.
There’s just something inescapably compelling about building your very own empire from scratch, overseeing everything from construction to political policies and watching your carefully-laid plans come to fruition.
Equally, though, it’s just as fun when tycoon games go wrong, and everything you’ve built comes crashing down in a single instant thanks to some errant natural disaster or revolutionary uprising.
The Mac might not be the best platform in the world for gaming, but tycoon games for Mac do exist, so without further ado, let’s take a look at the best tycoon games for Mac in 2023.
A quick note: while it’s possible to play many Windows-based tycoon games on Mac, we will only be including games that can natively be played on Apple’s machines for convenience’s sake. Let’s begin!
If you want your tycoon games to have a political and satirical bent, then Tropico 6 is definitely one of the best tycoon games for Mac to check out, and it’s available natively on the platform too!
It puts you in charge of your very own island nation, and you can run it however you like; the choice is yours. Will you be a benevolent leader or a malicious dictator?
You can control everything from road networks to the look of your palace, but don’t be surprised if your disgruntled citizens batter down your door when you don’t treat them right.
The world of theme park sims is admittedly a rather small one, but for our money, despite strong competition from Bandai Namco’s Park Beyond, Planet Coaster still reigns supreme.
Frontier’s park sim is fully playable on Mac thanks to the porting efforts of Aspyr, allowing you to build and maintain the theme park of your dreams.
You can construct rides, test them out, and watch as park guests thrill to your wonderful creations, and you can also manage everything from landscaping to staff turnover and more.
Sega and Two Point Studios’ Two Point Campus, like Two Point Hospital before it, throws back to a wackier, less serious age of tycoon games, when titles like Theme Park and Theme Hospital ruled the roost.
Two Point Campus has you managing your very own university campus; you’ll construct the campus grounds and lay them out how you like, then watch as students flock to silly subjects like Gastronomy or Knight School.
This isn’t one to check out if you want a more po-faced and less humorous affair, but if you like your tycoon games with a side of zany, then Two Point Campus is one of the better tycoon games for Mac out there right now.
Admittedly, RimWorld isn’t one of the best tycoon games for Mac if you like having a high degree of control over your empire. This is a colony sim where the emergent storytelling of your colonists is just as important as your decisions.
Who will your colonists turn out to be? Will you have to break up fights between two colonists that don’t get along? Will that colonist who ventured outside the walls come back safely?
Though RimWorld doesn’t have much of a story in and of itself, it’s the stories you make up and the ones your colony organically tells that make this one of the tycoon games for Mac you need to check out.
The visual style of Prison Architect will probably feel pretty familiar if you’ve spent some time playing RimWorld, but these are two very different tycoon games for Mac with very different focal points.
Unlike many other tycoon games, Prison Architect sort of has a story; its tutorial missions will take you through a rather depressing narrative while teaching you the core mechanics at the same time.
You’re also free to explore Prison Architect’s various systems in sandbox mode if you prefer, building a prison to your specifications and running it however you see fit.
At time of writing, Mac support doesn’t appear to be planned for Cities: Skylines 2, the upcoming sequel to the now-classic 2015 city-builder Cities: Skylines.
While that might come as something of a blow to those on the hunt for great tycoon games for Mac, the original Cities: Skylines is still very playable on Mac devices, and it remains as endlessly absorbing as it’s ever been.
If, like most people, you were disappointed by the 2013 SimCity debacle, Cities: Skylines likely served as a balm for your soul, and if you’re yet to discover it, then there’s a treat waiting in store for you.
It probably shouldn’t surprise you that Game Dev Tycoon has made its way onto a list of the best Mac tycoon games; after all, the word “tycoon” is right there in the name, so this one’s pretty much an open invitation.
As the name suggests, Game Dev Tycoon is all about running your very own game development empire. You can choose what kind of games to develop, research new technologies, and grow your team until you’re unstoppable.
As the industry moves on, so too will you, building larger and larger projects with bigger teams and increasing the scope of your game design dreams until you’re making massive epics to rival huge AAA studios.