Activision Value's Big Biz Tycoon is a management strategy game that, like several similar games, lets you build and run your own company. But unlike most other games in the management strategy genre, Big Biz Tycoon incorporates elements from virtual-life games like The Sims. While these elements add some variety to the standard business, the game as a whole is only a mediocre alternative to other management strategy or virtual-life games. And Big Biz Tycoon doesn't look or sound terrific, either--its 2D graphics are colorful and functional, but its forgettable music and sparse sound effects don't add much to the game.
This game lets you run your own company--and decorate the office.
The game comes with a handful of different scenarios, most of which contain a prebuilt office environment and a set goal, whether it's to earn a certain amount of money in a given time limit, raise the company's stock price, or pay back a large bank loan. You can also create your own scenarios and set your starting money and goals.
The general goal of the game is to make money either through developing, producing, and distributing products or by investing in the stock market. You can hire employees, assign them to different projects and departments, determine the number and type of products to produce, and set the sale price. You're also in charge of advertising, salaries and bonuses, employee productivity and happiness, and decorating your office. These last two categories are where the game's virtual-life elements come into play.
Like EA's immensely popular virtual-life game The Sims, Big Biz Tycoon lets you buy a wide variety of furniture and decorations to create different kinds of environments. The available items are for the most part office-oriented, although you'll find a selection of beds and stereo equipment along with the expected office items like desks, chairs, shelves, computers, chairs, printers, and tables. The quality of the items you choose will have an effect on your employees' happiness and on your ability to hire new employees or woo them away from competitors.
Each employee has a unique set of attributes that affect his or her ability to perform different tasks. Employees with a low intelligence rating, for instance, won't be much help in developing a type of product that requires lots of intelligence. Projects have minimum requirements that correspond to employee attributes, so if you want to develop a specific product, you'll have to assemble a team that meets the requirements. While there doesn't seem to be any limit to the number of employees you can assign to a project, each employee increases the project's cost, and they can't perform other tasks while working on the project.