Cookie Clicker is an incremental web-browser game developed by Orteil. The goal of the game is to produce as many cookies (by clicking on the Big Cookie and buying buildings to produce them) as you can. There is no end to the game, but some believe getting all the achievements is technically seen as "finishing the game".
Orteil created Cookie Clicker on August 8, 2013. Orteil created the game in a single day and posted it on 4chan, garnering 50,000 players in only 1 hour. The game was fairly simple at first, and by the 24th of the same month, he made a new version of the game at a different URL. The old game would later be known as "Cookie Clicker Classic".
Cookie Clicker Full Release
After creating the new Cookie Clicker (also known as the 1.0 Update), Orteil continued to add new features to the game, such as upgrades, options and achievements. The game is still in constant update, with large updates happening around holidays such as Halloween, Christmas, Valentine's Day, April Fools' Day, and Easter. The game's current link can be found here. The game's source code can be found here. The current version is v2.031.
The game starts out with the player having no cookies. The player has the option to click the Big Cookie, on the left of the screen, which initially produces one cookie per click. When the player has 15 cookies, they may buy a Cursor, which autoclicks every 10 seconds. The player can then keep producing cookies, until they buy grandmas, farms, mines and so on. Golden cookies may appear on screen, initially every 7 minutes or so, which can help to greatly boost Cookies per Second for a short period of time. Upgrades may be purchased to increase cookies produced by buildings, or simply increase Cookies per Second.
After 1 billion cookies have been produced, the player can start producing sugar lumps, a secondary currency used to level up buildings, which increases production by a slight margin. Some buildings, such as Farms or Banks, may include a minigame, which is unlocked when levelling them up. Minigames include their own small games, such as the Garden and the Stock Market which may be used to help increase CpS, and include their own upgrades and achievements.
Later on in the game, the player may choose to start the Grandmapocalypse, an event that starts after purchasing the Bingo Centre upgrade, costing 1 quadrillion cookies. This event causes the grandmas in the game to become twisted, fleshy creatures. Starting the grandmapocalypse also starts the spawning of wrinklers, who lower CpS, but can be popped to give more cookies than taken away. Golden cookies have also now turned into Wrath Cookies, which have usually negative effects, such as halving cookie production.
After a certain amount of cookies are produced, the player starts producing heavenly chips, which can be used when the player ascends. Ascending allows the player to purchase heavenly upgrades, such as purchasing a cookie dragon and an upgrade that allows the player to change seasons at will, as well as giving a flat CpS boost, based on how many heavenly chips the player ascended with. Ascending also allows the player to go into challenge modes, such as Born Again, which acts as though the player has started from day 0. The ascension system practically makes the game infinitely playable.
The game can then continue until the player has massive amounts of cookies, such as tredecillions and eventually vigintillions.
As of 2.031, the game has:
- 18 buildings
- 613 upgrades
- 518 achievements
- 88 heavenly upgrades
- 16 shadow achievements
- 5 seasons
Impact on Genre
Cookie Clicker is seen as the figurehead of Incremental games, IGN calling it the "greatest idle game" and an article in The Kernel calling it the "best-known game in the genre". Because of the complexity of some parts of Cookie Clicker, some people believe that Cookie Clicker is more close than an actual game than an incremental game, due to a large proportion of incremental games having simple and easy to understand concepts.