Clicker Games Provide a Futuristic Look at the Present

In Clicking Bad, once you’ve clicked your way to selling $20 of meth, you can buy a Storage Shed, which cooks a batch every five seconds — without requiring you to click at all. On the distribution side, you can acquire a Drug Mule, and eventually a Drug Van — just like that, you’ve moved from labor to management. Your scrappy start-up is on its way to becoming a corporate powerhouse.

Our society is allowing its wealth to concentrate in the holdings of a few companies like Apple and Facebook, because the games are playing us. And, unlike [another clicker game] Universal Paperclips, they often don’t look like games. They are decoratively skinned as social media, giving us a sense of connection to people we kinda, sorta know, or as infotainment platforms that make us informationally obese.

Source: Glenn Dixon via Pacific Standard