Business simulation games, or economic simulation games, are games that simulate a real-world, historical, or hypothetical economy or business. Examples of economic simulation games are listed in The Higher Education Academy - Economics Network The interest in these games lies in accurate simulation of real-world events using algorithms, as well as the close tying of players' actions to expected or plausible consequences and outcomes. An important facet of economic simulations is the emergence of artificial systems, gameplay and structures. "Pure" business simulations have been described as construction and management simulations without a construction element, and can thus be called management simulations. Indeed, micromanagement is often emphasized in these kinds of games. They are essentially numeric, but try to hold the player's attention by using creative graphics.
There are many games in this genre which have been designed around numerous different enterprises. Theme Park World can be called a business simulation because the goal of the game is to attract customers and make profits, but the game also involves a building aspect that makes it a construction and management simulation. This genre also includes many of the "Tycoon" games such as Railroad Tycoon and Big Biz Tycoon. Other notable business simulation games include Air Bucks and The Movies.
Trevor Chan is a notable developer of business simulation games, having developed Capitalism which has been called the best business simulation game. Besides Capitalism, another notable pure business simulation is Hollywood Mogul.
One interesting aspect of economic simulations in education is the problem of ethics or morality. Should students be instructed to behave ethically within the game, or should they focus their efforts on streamlining tasks related to running the business? The quandary, here, lies in that such efforts can be, at times, at cross-purposes with each other.
An early economic sim by Dan (Danielle) Bunten, M.U.L.E., foreshadowed events that would transpire later in video gaming history, especially in the MMOG market, with regard to player cooperation and simulated economies. The game was Electronic Arts' most highly awarded game, despite selling only 30,000 copies.