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Typical occurrence of the Grandmapocalypse during the final stage, version 2.0.

Note: Research prices are inaccurate.

The Grandmapocalypse is an in-game event that affects both the 1.0 Update of the game, as well as the pre-update version. It affects the background as well as the appearance of the game window and causes spawning of Wrinklers and Wrath cookies.

Warning message that shows up when you're about to buy the One Mind upgrade.

Starting the Grandmapocalypse

To start the Grandmapocalypse, you must have at least seven Grandma types, and at least six grandmas. You will then have access to the Bingo center/Research facility. This will allow you different research/upgrades and eventually the "One Mind" Upgrade. This will give you a warning message, and if allowed will start the Grandmapocalypse.

Stage 1

Once "One Mind" is purchased, the Grandmapocalypse begins. The Grandmas are now considered "Awoken". Wrath cookies will appear 33% of the time, and Wrinklers will appear as well. The Grandmatriarchs will lose their teeth and become more wrinkled.

Stage 2

To get to the next stage, follow the Research Upgrades until you buy the "Communal Brainsweep" Upgrade. The Grandmatriarch Status will change to "Displeased." Wrath cookies will appear 66% of the time, and Wrinklers will appear faster. The Grandmatriarchs are tinted red and have glowing eyes and sharper teeth.

Stage 3

To get to the Final Stage of the Grandmatriarch form, you must follow the Research Upgrades up until you buy the "Elder Pact." Another warning message will appear. The news broadcasts will turn into reports of the world ending, and the Grandmatriarch Status will change to "Angered." Golden Cookies will be entirely replaced by Wrath cookies at this stage. Wrinklers appear even faster. The Grandmatriarchs show their true form as demonic masses of flesh in the background.

Halting the Grandmapocalypse

Once Elder Pact is purchased, the Elder Pledge switch is unlocked. Elder Pledge puts a temporary hold on the Grandmapocalypse and unlocks the Elder Covenant switch. When the Grandmapocalypse is halted or ended, the Grandmatriarchs' state of mind becomes "appeased". This changes the background into the original blue, makes only Golden Cookies appear, pops all wrinklers, and reverts the news ticker to normal messages.

The Elder Covenant is worth exactly 66.6 trillion cookies. It puts an indefinite hold to the Grandmatriarchs' wrath. This purchase results in a 5% reduction of your CpS, and locks the Elder Pledge switch. In order to return to the chaotic state of the Grandmapocalypse and restore your CpS, the Elder Covenant can be revoked at a cost of 6.66 billion cookies.

The Elder Pledge will put the genocidal grandmas to rest for 30 minutes. Every time an Elder Pledge is bought, the price goes up by a factor of 8, capping at 4.4 trillion. After pledging 10 times, Sacrificial Rolling Pins is able to be researched. It doubles the time of peace, making it an hour long.

The Grandmapocalypse can also be stopped by selling all of your grandmas. Doing this causes the Grandmatriarchs' status to disappear from the Stats page. Buying at least one grandma will restart the Grandmapocalypse at the stage you left off.

Background changes

As the Grandmapocalypse goes on, the Grandmatriarchs grow increasingly angry with each Bingo Center/Research Facility related upgrade. This is reflected in the backgrounds:

Research Upgrades

Icon Name Unlock condition Base price Description ID
BingoNew.png Bingo center/Research facility "Elder" achievement earned

At least 7 grandmas owned

Money.png 1 quadrillion Grandma-operated science lab and leisure club.
Grandmas are 4 times as efficient.
Regularly unlocks new upgrades.
"What could possibly keep those
grandmothers in check?...
SpecializedChocolateChipsNew.png Specialized chocolate chips 1st research project completed Money.png 1 quadrillion Cookie production multiplier +1%.
"Computer-designed chocolate chips. Computer chips, if you will."
DesignerCocoaBeansNew.png Designer cocoa beans 2nd research project completed Money.png 2 quadrillion Cookie production multiplier +2%.
"Now more aerodynamic than ever!"
ElderRollingPinNew.png Ritual rolling pins 3rd research project completed Money.png 4 quadrillion Grandmas are twice as efficient.
"The result of years of scientific research!"
ElderOvenNew.png Underworld ovens 4th research project completed Money.png 8 quadrillion Cookie production multiplier +3%.
"Powered by science, of course!"
ElderMindNew.png One mind [note 1] 5th research project completed Money.png 16 quadrillion Each grandma gains +0.02 base Cps per grandma.
Note: the grandmothers are growing restless. Do not encourage them.
"We are one. We are many."
ElderNutsNew.png Exotic nuts 6th research project completed Money.png 32 quadrillion Cookie production multiplier +4%.
"You'll go crazy over these!"
ElderCauldronNew.png Communal brainsweep 7th research project completed Money.png 64 quadrillion Each grandma gains another +0.02 base Cps per grandma.
Note: proceeding any further in scientific research may have unexpected results. You have been warned.
"We fuse. We merge. We grow."
ElderSugarNew.png Arcane sugar 8th research project completed Money.png 128 quadrillion Cookie production multiplier +5%.
"Tastes like insects, ligaments, and molasses."
ElderBrainNew.png Elder Pact 9th research project completed Money.png 256 quadrillion Each grandma gains +0.05 base CpS per portal.
Note: this is a bad idea.
"squirm crawl slither writhe
today we rise"
ElderRollingPinNew.png Sacrificial rolling pins "Elder Pledge" purchased 10 times Money.png 2.889 trillion Elder pledges last twice as long.
"These are mostly just for spreading the anti-aging cream.
(And accessorily, shortening the chicken's suffering.)"


Icon Name Unlock condition Base price Description ID
ElderPledgeNew.png Elder Pledge [note 2] "Elder Pact" purchased Money.png 64 x 8n
(cap: 64 × 812)
Contains the wrath of the elders, at least for a while.
"This is simple ritual involving anti-aging cream, cookie batter mixed in the moonlight, and a live chicken."
ElderBrainNew.png Elder Covenant "Elder Pledge" purchased at least once Money.png 66.667 trillion Puts a permanent end to the elders' wrath, at the price of 5% of your CpS.
"This is a complicated ritual involving silly, inconsequential trivialities such as cursed laxatives, century-old cacao, and an infant.
Don't question it."
Revoke Elder Covenant Money.png 6.667 billion You will get 5% of your CpS back, but the grandmatriarchs will return.


Icon Name Description ID
ElderBrainNew.png Elder nap Appease the grandmatriarchs at least once.
ElderBrainNew.png Elder slumber Appease the grandmatriarchs at least 5 times.
"our mind
the universe"
ElderBrainNew.png Elder calm Declare a covenant with the grandmatriarchs.
WrinklerLarvaNew.png Itchscratcher Burst 1 wrinkler. 105
WrinklerLarvaNew.png Wrinklesquisher [note 3] Burst 50 wrinklers. 106
WrinklerLarvaNew.png Moistburster [note 3] Burst 200 wrinklers. 107
LastChanceToSeeAchievementIcon2.png Last Chance to See
(shadow achievement)
Burst the near-extinct shiny wrinkler.
"You monster!"

Why should I trigger the Grandmapocalypse?

The Grandmapocalypse seems a bit scary (tyrannical end-of-the-world jokes aside), but it's really not all that bad, and has the potential to usher in a new era of prosperity for you and your cookie business.

Upgrading through One Mind gives you a 6x increase in CpS because of Wrinklers. Wrinklers are red, eldrich beasts which will leech a small fraction of your CpS and eat it. Fortunately, you can pop them to make them explode, giving you your cookies back along with a little interest.

The reason why wrinklers offer such a big boost is because they help each other. Popping a wrinkler will give you an amount of cookies equal to 1.1x the cookies eaten by ALL wrinklers while that wrinkler was present, not just the cookies eaten by that particular wrinkler.

If you're still confused, here's a grossly oversimplified example. Let's assume you make exactly 10 trillion cookies per second. Since each wrinkler will eat 5% of your CpS, 10 wrinklers will halve your CpS, lowering it to 5 trillion cookies. After 10 seconds, those 10 wrinklers have eaten a total of 50 trillion cookies, so each wrinkler will give you 1.1x those 50 trillion cookies when popped. Multiplying that 55 trillion cookies by 10 wrinklers gives a total yield of 550 trillion. Adding in the 50 trillion cookies from your unwithered production gives a grand total of 600 trillion cookies, exactly 6x the amount of cookies you'd otherwise get. However, you have to actually pop the wrinklers before getting those bonus cookies, but doing so will force you to wait for more wrinklers to spawn, which can take a while. (Wrinklers can also be spawned manually by the "Resurrect Abomination" spell from the Grimoire, which can significantly speed up the process.)

True, One Mind also come with the downside of turning some of your golden cookies into wrath cookies, but it's not really all that big of a downside. Not only do wrath cookies result in positive outcomes nearly as often as they do negative ones (and are the only way to encounter Elder Frenzies), you can also just choose to ignore them if you want to. (Doing so is not recommended.)

To Pledge or not to pledge?

Generally, if you're a relatively active player, upgrade through One Mind but do not take Communal Brainsweep. If you idle most or all of the time, or if you leave the golden switch turned on, then feel free to buy all the way to Elder Pact.

If you play actively enough to click an occasional golden cookie, it's not worth it to go further into the grandmapocalypse except to help with achievements. Later phases make wrinklers spawn more frequently, but you still can only have 10 of them at once, so the increased spawn time doesn't really do much. Later phases also have the downside of turning even more golden cookies into wrath cookies.

If you aren't clicking golden cookies, either because you leave the game idle or because you have the golden switch turned on, then there's little harm to going to later phases. You'll get wrinklers faster, which is helpful for hunting collectibles, and you'll also get a 5% passive CpS bonus from Arcane Sugar, not to mention that Communal Brainsweep and Elder Pact will also boost your grandmas' efficiency in and of themselves.

However, since the 2.002 update, it has become even more beneficial to remain in Stage 1 of the Grandmapocalypse (One Mind without Communal Brainsweep), rather than proceeding to Stages 2 (Communal Brainsweep) or 3 (Elder Pact). The main draw of Stage 3 is the increased occurrence of Elder Frenzies. Originally, triggering an Elder Frenzy would cancel and replace any Frenzy or Clot effect already active, meaning that the prevalence of Wrath Cookies was the sole factor in determining the relative effectiveness of Elder Frenzies. With wrath cookies appearing 3x more often than in Stage 1, Stage 3 of the Grandmapocalypse gave 3x the benefit from Elder Frenzies. Since the update, however, Elder Frenzy's 666x CpS boost will now stack with any pre-existing Frenzies and Clots instead of cancelling them out. Assuming that these effects are active about half the time during the Stage they are most common in, we have:

  • In Stage 3, half of all Elder Frenzies will overlap with a Clot and be cut in half, while the other half will remain unaffected. This leaves the Elder Frenzy yield as , with E being a full Elder Frenzy. This means that Elder Frenzies are now only about 3/4 as effective in Stage 3 as they used to be before the update.
  • In Stage 1, Wrath Cookies only appear 1/3 of the time, so Elder Frenzies will only happen 1/3 as often than in stage 3. Out of the small amount of Elder Frenzies that actually happen, half will overlap with a Frenzy and get multiplied by 7, 1/6 of them will be halved due to overlapping with a Clot, and a third of them will overlap with neither. This gives an overall yield of , meaning that Elder Frenzies are now nearly 4 times as effective in Stage 1 as they used to be pre-2.002, overall being almost twice as effective as Stage 3 Elder Frenzies in the long run, even despite being so much rarer of an occurrence.

Subtle variations can be made for several outstanding factors (e.g. Krumblor's Dragon Harvest, the various stock market loans, etc), but will not alter the overall effectiveness by much.

Strategy for achievements

Later phases of the Grandmapocalypse tend to be slightly worse for CpS, since as mentioned above, you stand to gain more cookies through relatively active play while in the first stage (One Mind).

Despite that, you will still need to play the Grandmapocalypse through to it's end to get the related achievements. More specifically, you need to issue 5 Pledges, and declare a Convenant, on top of popping at least 100 wrinklers (although this can be done even in stage 1).

The later phases are also good for collecting all Halloween cookies and Easter eggs. Since you'll be popping wrinklers instantly when you are looking for these collectibles, you'll benefit from the faster spawn rate, and in the event you are simply going for collectibles, the potential negative downsides of having exclusively Wrath Cookies won't be as painful to your cookie production.

If you've gone to the end of the Grandmapocalypse, then you might want to pledge for active play. By pledging, you'll lose the technical CpS gain from wrinklers, but all cookies will go back to being golden cookies instead of wrath cookies. If you can get more benefit from the golden cookies than from the wrinklers (potentially; having ten wrinklers on the cookie is a passive x6 CpS multiplier) then this may potentially be better. It is unclear which of these methods provides more overall cookies, however.

Using covenant is worse than pledging. You don't want to make a covenant and then go idle, because you will be giving up wrinklers to gain golden cookies that you aren't there to click. You also don't want to use a covenant while active, because covenant has a CpS penalty that pledging does not, and while active you can keep refreshing the pledge.

That said, the Covenant is useful as an indirect way to cancel out of a pledge early. If you are about to go idle and want to cancel a pledge, you can't do it directly. However, you can replace the pledge with a Covenant, and Covenants can be cancelled.


Cookie Clicker v1.03

The Grandmapocalypse returned alongside various other grandma-related updates in version "1.03", which was then quickly updated once again with only Grandmapocalypse-related updates in version "1.031". It is triggered after buying the "One mind" upgrade from the Research Facility, and is furthered by buying "Communal brainsweep" and finally "Elder Pact".

Known effects of this event include the background changing into a painting of grandmothers slowly acquiring a demonic appearance and Wrath Cookies occasionally (or once angered enough, always) appearing instead of Golden Cookies. Once the Grandmapocalypse begins, the "special" segment of the Stats page will indicate the grandmatriarch's mood, from "Awoken", "Displeased", to finally "Angered". Starting with Version 1.0393, the Grandmas in the Store section will distort as the Grandmapocalypse advances, and Wrinklers, leechlike creatures that decrease CpS until popped, begin appearing.

In Cookie Clicker Classic

An example of the first stage of the Grandmapocalypse

When you hit 1,000,000,000 cookies, the final stage will be activated

The Grandmapocalypse starts once you've accumulated over 1,000,000 cookies. The screen becomes covered in a shaking, flashing, tiled background of grandmas. As you gain more cookies, the Grandmapocalypse becomes more intense, with more images of different grandmas of various sizes and intensity beginning to show up.

The Elder Pledge

The Grandmapocalypse can be temporarily halted by purchasing the Elder Pledge, an upgrade which becomes available after accumulating over 2 million cookies. The first iteration of this upgrade costs 666,666 cookies and increases the effectiveness of your clicking, and boosts the CpS of your grandmas based on your number of portals.

The boost in CpS from purchasing the Elder Pledge can be a huge gift in the beginning of the end game of Cookie Clicker.  Players can increase their clicking output by over 100x with enough cursors which can give a huge boost to cookie output when saving for additional Portals or Time Machines.  

Skull Grandmas later in the grandmapocalypse


  • Sometimes, switching windows can cause the grandma background to get 'stuck' in its current state until you buy another upgrade that changes it. (Does not work anymore in version 1.0375)
  • Elder Covenant used to cost 666 trillion cookies, and cut CpS by 20% instead of 5%.

If the bug occurs, this is the result. It's zoomed out for the best effect.


  1. Purchasing the One mind upgrade triggers the beginning of the Grandmapocalypse.
  2. Elder Pledge is unavailable while Elder Covenant is in effect.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Unlike most "number of actions" achievements, the Wrinkler and Reindeer achievements are counted in a single game, not all time: Ascending will reset the counter.
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