Time management games and activities are fun, enjoyable, but also eye-opening, as they correlate to your real-life time management skills.

Here’s how playing them can be useful and what time management games and activities you can play, both at the office or at home, and on your devices.

Time management games - cover

What are time management games?

A time management game is a video or real-life game you can play alone or in a group – these games require you to meet certain objectives, in a specific order, but with limited time and resources.

Most of these games are fast-paced and require you to plan and strategize, in order to use the limited resource and time as effectively as you can, before meeting the required objectives.

A crucial benefit of these time management games is that most of the time, you’ll be able to hone the skills you learn by playing them, to solve real-life work challenges.

Why play time management games?

There are several benefits to playing time management games, both the video and the real-life variety:

They improve your reaction time

Considering that these games are fast-paced, they help improve your reflexes – unless you’re able to react on time to the challenges in the game, you cannot progress.

They’ll help you perfect your planning and strategizing skills

Considering that these games require you to think up and execute the right strategies, in order to reach the later stages of the game, you’ll also improve your real-life organizational and planning skills.

💡 Apart from playing the right time management games to improve your real-life time management skills, such as planning, organizing, and strategizing, you can do that in real life too – check out how in our detailed guide on how to improve time management skills.

They improve your teamwork abilities

Considering that most of these games require you to collaborate with others to reach the desired effects, you’ll learn how to cooperate and make the most of the time and resources you have, together with your friends and colleagues.

They improve your resource management

Considering that these games require that you use the resources you have in an effective manner in order to progress, you’ll likely develop a good sense for resource management in real life as well.

They help you understand the importance of time management

Last but not least, most time management games are designed to help you understand the importance of time management and help you reassess your work routine. For example, they can help you assess how your perception of time, organizational skills, and the understanding of whether your actions lead to your goals, may influence your work.

Office “offline” time management games (for team buildings)

Here are 14 engaging time management games and activities you can easily play with your team at the office – even when you experience Internet downtime or a blackout:

How long is a minute?

How long is a minute
Great for: Figuring out how you and your colleagues perceive time

How it’s played:

  • Bring people to a room with no clocks (or where all the clocks are covered)
  • Take away their phones and watches
  • Instruct them to stand up and shut their eyes
  • Tell them to open their eyes when they think 60 seconds have passed

What you’ll learn: Some people will open their eyes before the 60 seconds are up and some will open them after. This game will help you better estimate the time it takes you to finish projects and tasks because you’ll understand how well you perceive time, to begin with.

Circadian Rhythm

Cicardian rhytm
Great for: Recognizing optimal time for work

How it’s played:

  • Instruct your colleagues to plan a day in their life, from waking up to going to sleep
  • Tell them to take each period of the day and write a letter showing their energy levels next to it:
    • A – High energy
    • B – Autopilot control
    • C – 70% energy level
    • D – Distracted
    • E – Slowing down for the day
    • F – Tired or hungry

What you’ll learn: You’ll understand how energy levels change during the day, so you’ll be able to make better decisions about your schedules. Your team will learn when they should work on important, challenging tasks (during “High energy” time), when they should tackle less important work (during “Autopilot control” time or “70% energy level” time), and when they should simply take a break (during “Distracted” time). You can even post all your completed charts on a wall, so everyone will know when to call their co-workers, and for what type of tasks.

💡 The Circadian Rhythm game is based on the time management technique called Biological Prime Time – to read more about it, check out our list of 19 Best Time Management Techniques.

What I did yesterday

What I did yesterday
Great for: Finding a link between work performance and activities

How it’s played:

  • First, ask people at the office to write down 10 things they did yesterday while at work
  • Then, ask people to write 5 things they expect to see on their next performance review
  • Look over the two lists for each person together, and make links between list items
  • Additional step: Have people rank the 10 things they did yesterday in terms of importance and urgency

What you’ll learn: Many people will try to find indirect links between the things they did, and what they expect to be praised for in reviews, in order to justify their activities. In the end, you’ll likely find that you spend too much time on activities that don’t impact your expected performance.

Colored blocks

Colored blocks
Great for: Stressing the importance of prioritizing

How it’s played:

  • Bring different-colored blocks to work and place them on a table
  • Assign value to the blocks based on their color (blue = 1, green = 2, red = 3, etc.)
  • Instruct the co-workers to gather as many points as possible in 60 seconds, by picking up one block at a time, but only with their non-dominant hand

What you’ll learn: How to prioritize blocks in order to get the highest score – in the office, this translates to urgent and important tasks you need to prioritize and tackle every day in order to finish your work properly.

Race to the Ace of Spades

Race to the ace of spades
Great for: Understanding the importance of time management and proper organization

How it’s played:

  • You bring 2 decks of cards to work
  • You organize the first decks of cards in order, from aces to kings, and all facing the same direction
  • You mix up the second deck of cards and jumble them up so they don’t all face the same direction
  • Pick two volunteers, and have each pick one deck of cards, without them knowing what you’ve done to the decks
  • Instruct them to find the Ace of Spades
  • Unless pure luck comes into play, the volunteer with the organized deck will find the Ace of Spades much faster, and the volunteer with the jumbled up deck will likely complain about the unfairness of the game

What you’ll learn: The organized deck represents working on tasks in an organized, time managed manner. The other deck represents working on tasks in random order and with no time scheduled  – the advantage of an organized, time blocked schedule should be obvious in the end.

Time Squared

Time squared
Great for: Identifying time wasters and extra time you didn’t even know you could have

How it’s played:

  • Give your co-workers 3 pieces of printed paper with 24 squares representing 24 hours in a day
  • When you hand them the first paper, instruct them to fill out the squares with routine activities they perform every day, such as sleeping (e.g. 8 squares), eating (e.g. 3 X 1 square), watching TV (e.g. 2 squares), etc.
  • When you hand them the second paper, instruct them to fill out the squares with the non-productive activities they perform at the office, such as private calls, coffee-breaks, etc.
  • When you hand them the third paper, instruct them to compare the first two papers, and mark the empty squares

What you’ll learn: The marked empty squares represent the time opened for productive activities – your team will be able to identify unnecessary time wasters and how they can minimize them in order to leave more room for important activities.

“Big Picture” puzzle challenge

Big puzzle challenge
Great for: Understanding the importance of having clear goals in mind when planning activities

How it’s played:

  • Give your team a puzzle and instruct them to solve it as quickly as possible, but don’t provide them with the “Big picture” that shows the finished puzzle
  • Interrupt their process after 5 minutes, and ask them: “What makes this task difficult?”
  • They’ll likely tell you that the problem is not knowing the expected outcome for the puzzle
  • Give them the “Big picture” to continue, and see how they speed up and finish much faster

What you’ll learn: Knowing where you’re supposed to end up, makes planning the steps that will take you there much easier. Unless you have the “Big picture” of a task that shows how the task relates to the project, it’ll be harder to figure out whether the task is important, or whether you should find different priorities.

$86,400

86400
Great for: Emphasizing the importance of using time wisely

How it’s played:

  • Each member of your team is given $86,400 to spend within a day
  • You can’t carry over what you didn’t spend today to tomorrow — anything you don’t spend is lost
  • Have everyone write down what activities they want to spend this money on

What you’ll learn: The $86,400 you are given to spend are actually 84,600 seconds you have per day — so, instead of money, it’s actually time that you won’t be able to retrieve tomorrow if you lose it today. This game will help you and your team understand how well you’re spending your time now (in relation to how you’d spend the amount of $84,000 and whether you’d waste any of it) and how you can best take back control of your time in the future.

The Ribbon of Life

Ribbon of life
Great for: Helping your team understand how much time you all have at your disposal to reach success

How it’s played:

  • You take a ribbon that’s 100cm long and a pair of scissors.
  • Ask your players about their estimation of the expected lifespan of an individual. The answer may depend on the country you’re living in, so let’s assume that you’re operating in the United States where people have an average lifespan of 79 years and that your team is aware of this piece of information. Cut off 21cm from your ribbon, to get 79cm.
  • Take the average age of your team into consideration. Say it’s 30 years, which means you’ll need to cut off 30 cm more.
  • Take other factors into consideration:
    • the weekends (2 days X 52 weeks X 49 years / 365 days = 14 years/cm)
    • public holidays (e.g. 10 days per year in the US X 49 years / 365 days = 1.3 years/cm)
    • vacation time (e.g. 10 days on average in the US, i.e. 1.3 years/cm)
    • sick and other leave (e.g. 7 days on average in the US X 49 years / 365 days = 1 year/cm)
    • sleeping (e.g. 8 hours per day x 365 x 49 / 24 / 365 = 16.3 years/cm)
    • eating (e.g. 2 hours per day x 365 x 49 / 24 / 365 = 4 years/cm
    • commuting (e.g. 1 hour both ways x 365 x 49 / 24 / 365 = 2 years/cm).
  • In the end, subtract these years from your lifespan and cut off these centimeters from your ribbon. The remaining length of the ribbon is the amount you have left to succeed in life.

What you’ll learn: Time is precious and you have a finite number of years to succeed in what you’re pursuing, so put those years to good use.

Delegation Skill Practice

Delegation
Great for: Teaching your team how better to delegate tasks

How it’s played:

  • Divide your team into smaller teams of three people:
    • the delegator
    • the employee
    • the observer
  • Instruct the “delegator” to define the most unpleasant task they usually have to perform at work
  • Have the “delegator” delegate this task to an “employee” and explain it
  • Give the “observer” a sheet of paper to write down notes about how well the delegator is explaining the task
  • Give the “employee” a sheet of paper to write down notes about the points to go over while working on the delegated task
  • Discuss how well the task was explained on a subteam level
  • Play three rounds of this game, to give everyone a chance to play all three roles
  • Discuss how well the tasks were explained in all subteams

What you’ll learn: First, you’ll better understand how to explain the tasks you are delegating. Second, you’ll all be able to learn from each other about the best delegation practices and approaches.

The Mayonnaise Jar Lesson

Mayonnaise jar
Great for: Teaching the team to understand the importance of scheduling their priority tasks first

How it’s played:

  • You’ll need a jar, some golf balls, some pebbles, and sand.
  • Gather your team to see the demonstration (alternatively, you can bring extra jars, pebbles, golf balls, and sand, divide people into teams, and instruct them to perform the task themselves).
  • The gist is simple — you need to add the pebbles, golf balls, and sand to the jar. The correct order is adding the golf balls first, then the pebbles, then the sand. Following this order will help you make room for all items in the jar.
  • However, if you add sand first, there will be much less room for the other items, and you likely won’t be able to fit everything.

What you’ll learn: The golf balls represent your priority tasks. The pebbles represent your less important tasks. The sand represents everything else.

By adding the golf balls first, you show that working on priority tasks is crucial for you. By adding the pebbles afterward, you show that you also have the tendency to save some time for other important tasks in your life.

Sand represents unimportant tasks that can always wait.

If you fill your days with unimportant tasks, you’ll never have time for what is truly important — just like you’ll never have room for the golf balls and pebbles if you fill the jar with sand.

Desert Island

Desert island
Great for: Teaching the team how to analyze what their priorities are

How it’s played:

  • Everyone is given a pen and paper — the task is to imagine being trapped on a desert island
  • Set a time limit — for example, two minutes
  • During this time, everyone should write down what they would bring to a desert island
  • All items deemed as essential by the group will bring them points
  • All tasks not deemed as essential by the group will bring the player no points

What you’ll learn: Every player will get a chance to learn how to quickly assess what their priorities/essentials in work are. You’ll learn to be more careful about assigning your time blocks to unessential tasks, just as you should be careful about what you’re bringing to a desert island (if given the option to choose).

The Blind Polygon

The blind polygon
Great for: Helping improve everyone’s organizational and analytical skills

How it’s played:

  • The players are divided into smaller groups and given a rope
  • Each group will have a leader and will need to organize the rope into a shape specified by the said group’s leader — but, they’ll need to do so while blindfolded
  • No one is allowed to take off the blindfold — moreover, all the members of the team need to be touching the rope at all times during the task
  • Replay the game a couple of times — the groups will have more difficulties in the first round, but, they’ll eventually learn to work together, despite the lack of sight and the need for constant coordination

What you’ll learn: You’ll learn how to better work together, analyze tasks from different angles, and organize your work in such a way that helps you reach desired results — even if you don’t have all the necessary data (i.e. if you are “blindfolded” in some way).

Time Wasters

Time-wasters
Great for: Learning how best to deal with time wasters

How it’s played:

  • Divide the players into 4 teams
  • Provide each team with an envelope. Inside the envelope, they’ll find 4 index cards. At the back of the envelope, they’ll find a specific time-waster
  • Each group needs to write down solutions for the assigned time-wasters, and write them down on the first index card
  • The envelopes are then passed over to the other groups — the second group needs to write their solutions to the given time-waster on the second index card, and the other two groups need to write their solutions on their respective index cards
  • In the end, you read everyone’s solutions and discuss the best ones

What you’ll learn: You’ll be in the position to better understand how you can overcome specific time-wasters, and save more time for priority tasks in the future.

Online time management video games

Apart from the “offline” time management games you can play with the colleagues at the office, you can also enjoy various types of time management games you can play or download online. You can play them in single-player or multiplayer mode, depending on the game and game type:

Restaurant time management games

Diner Dash

Crazy Games rating: ★★★★★★★★ 7.9/10

Platforms: Web, PC, Mac, Wii, Nintendo DS, PlayStation Portable, iOS, Android, Xbox 360

Player Mode: Single-player

Game overview:

This top-selling game may not have started the time management genre, but it remains one of the more popular examples.

In this game, you play Flo, a hard worker who buys an old diner and has to make enough money to fix it up and expand her business.

Diner Dash Gameplay:

Essentially, you’ll be performing tasks around your restaurant:

  • as customers arrive at the restaurant, you drag and drop them to their tables
  • you guide Flo to take their orders, put the orders to the “service hatch”, and once the chef is done preparing the meal, you deliver the food to the table
  • once the customers are finished eating, you prepare and give them the check, and you have to clear the tables before new customers arrive
  • customers have a series of hearts that show their mood – the longer they wait the more hearts they lose, and when they’re out of hearts, they leave the restaurant and you lose points

In all tasks, accuracy and speed are key – you earn points for all successful tasks, and if you perform the same set of tasks fast, you get combo bonuses. You also get color bonuses, if you manage to match customers and seats by color.

If you earn enough money from checks and tips in one level, you progress to the next, and once you progress enough, you’ll be able to open up new restaurants and expand the game setting.

You can choose between two game modes:

  • Career mode – you follow and help Flo’s career
  • Endless shift – you must last as long as possible in a single frantic level

Cake Mania Collection

Steam rating: ★★★★★★ 6/10

Platforms: Web, PC, Adobe Flash Player, Nintendo DS, Mobile Phones, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 2, Wii

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

Cake Mania is a series of games where you guide the baker Jill Evans, as she bakes cakes, runs her own bakery, and deals with tricky customers, business challenges, renovations, and time travel.

Cake Mania Gameplay:

The gist of the game is to take orders and serve customers:

  • customers come in, form a line, and place their orders
  • you direct Jill to make the cakes the customers asked for before the customers grow impatient and leave
  • you can use cupcakes and television to entertain customers and stop them from leaving too soon

You can use the money you earn in the game to buy a new oven, a better frosting machine, a microwave, or faster shoes to help Jill keep up with her work.

The default concept is simple, but you can spice it up a little by playing in “Bakers Challenge” mode that allows you to renovate Jill’s kitchen and adjust her business hours.

Overcooked! 2

Steam rating: ★★★★★★★★★ 9/10

Platforms: Web, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PC, Xbox One, Linux, Mac, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, Amazon Luna

Player mode: Single-player, Multiplayer

Game overview:

Overcooked! 2 is another great outing in the restaurant time management subgenre, one that enhances the original concept – you and your team of up to 3 additional players have to serve a variety of recipes, such as pasta, cakes, burgers, and sushi to customers in a limited amount of time, all while cooking in unusual kitchen settings and dealing with obstacles.

Overcooked! 2 Gameplay:

The game essentially follows the usual cooking game principle, but you have to do the cooking in absurd and unexpected kitchens (such as Wizard schools):

  • you’ll need to coordinate orders and streamline teamwork – otherwise, you’ll be bumping into other players and the whole organization will collapse
  • apart from limited time and frantic fellow chefs, you’ll also have to deal with fires, moving floors, portals, and changing settings – one especially memorable level has you preparing salads while flying in a hot air balloon before you conveniently crash in a sushi kitchen

When compared to the original game, this sequel offers additional interactive levels, restaurant themes, elaborate chef costumes, more cooking techniques, and more exciting recipes to prepare while the kitchen (usually) crumbles around you.

Burger Shop 2

Steam rating: ★★★★★★★★★ 9/10

Platforms: Web, PC, iOS, Android, Mac

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

Burger Shop has aliens sending you the blueprint of a machine that creates food from nothing, so you build a successful restaurant – the sequel Burger Shop 2 has you waking up in a dumpster to discover your restaurant chain has been put out of business, and you don’t remember why. But no matter what, it’s time you rebuild your burger kingdom.

Burger Shop 2 Gameplay:

This is another game that requires fast and innovative thinking, as well as a good organization system:

  • cook for and serve your regular clientele in a speedy manner
  • add twists to your menu to attract new customers by upgrading your kitchen to serve pancakes, pasta, steak, cakes, pizzas, and more.

To spice up the usual cook-and-serve-as-fast-as-you-can formula, you’ll also have to look forward to solving the mystery of what happened to your original burger shop.

Food Tycoon FRVR

Crazy Games Rating: ★★★★★★★★★ 8.8/10

Platforms: Web, Android

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

Food Tycoon FRVR is another great 2D addition to the restaurant time management game genre — you’ll need to prepare meals, drinks, and desserts, as well as serve them as fast as you can, all in order to earn enough money to create a respectable food brand. You’ll get to manage food trucks, restaurants, and coffee shops, and work your way up to a legit restaurant empire.

Food Tycoon FRVR Gameplay:

In gist, you’ll need to make and serve beverages and meals across several venues:

  • Tap on the ingredients and machines in the right order to make the beverages and meals, and then serve them to the awaiting customers
  • Getting the orders right brings you coins (you’ll have a goal to earn a certain number of coins for each level) — you can then exchange these coins for gems
  • When you pass certain levels you’ll be able to unlock special boosters, as well as new ingredients, beverages, and meals
  • New levels also bring new customers, and these new customers will have their own, new orders to task you with
  • The more you progress, the more challenging it will get, as the number of customers and orders will increase

As you earn money and grow your pool of satisfied customers, you’ll get to open new venues across the town and grow your business further.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Overcooked!, Burger Shop, Mary le Chef, Battle Chef Brigade, Let’s Get Baking

Fantasy and history time management games

Elvenar

MMOs rating: ★★★ 3/5

Platforms: Web, PC, Android, iOS

Player mode: Single-player, Multiplayer

Game overview:

The Elvenar game requires you to choose a faction (Humans or Elves), build and manage a city, and discover the mythical fantasy world you’re in.

Elvenar Gameplay:

You’ll play as the ruler of your new city, so you’ll need to make sure your citizens prosper through strong leadership and effective resource management:

  • you start with a small village and later upgrade its factories, worker huts, other buildings, and facilities until you make a kingdom
  • you research new technologies and go on quests to find new relics and materials that will help you boost production and productivity

Apart from that, you’ll also have the chance to test out and improve your organizational and planning skills on the battlefield, once enemy factions attack.

Roads of Rome II

Steam rating: ★★★★★★★★ 8/10

Platforms: Web, PC, Mac, Android, iOS,

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

Roads of Rome II is a resource management game with a simple premise, but with a rich level structure and gameplay execution – in order to cure a poisoned Caesar, you’ll need to build a road that leads to the Gods and deal with many challenges along the way.

Roads of Rome II Gameplay:

Almost everything you achieve in this game will be tied to proper resource management and workforce organization, so you’ll need to:

  • gather up the people and materials to build bridges
  • gather food in farms, woods, and bushes in order to survive the journey
  • pursue specific goals in each level, and make sure you work on tasks in a specific order to get the desired effect

As you progress through the 40 available levels, as well as gather and manage resources properly, you’ll gain upgrades both for your workforce and the buildings they construct.

Legends of Atlantis: Exodus

Steam rating: ★★★★★★★★ 8/10

Platforms: Web, PC, Android, iOS

Player mode: Multiplayer

Game overview:

In Legends of Atlantis: Exodus, you’ll need to build roads and gather resources to save your people who are experiencing terrible floods – and all that in a short time, while the sinking of Atlantis threatens the land.

Legends of Atlantis: Exodus Gameplay:

This game is a classical race-against-the clock escapade:

  • you’ll need to repair houses, build roads, and save people from drowning all over Atlantis
  • you’ll need to gather energy, collect magic crystals and stack up on resources by chopping down trees and collecting water
  • you’ll also need to pursue specific goals within the 5 available episodes and subsequent levels in the game

If you manage to allocate your time and resources properly, you might actually help the city evacuate before the tidal disaster strikes.

12 Labours of Hercules

Steam rating: ★★★★★★★★★ 9/10

Platforms: Android, iOS, Linux, Mac, Nintendo Switch, PC

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

In Ancient Greece, the evil Hades has kidnapped Hercules’ wife, and now you have to help Hercules manage his way through 12 mythical challenges in order to save her.

12 labors of Hercules Gameplay:

On your way to beating the 12 challenges of Hercules, you’ll need to:

  • sort and assess tasks, because you’ll need to postpone some of them until you’ve collected the right resources
  • collect items and use bonuses that help you run faster or stop the ticking clock for a while
  • deal with obstacles such as lava pits, harpies, and ghosts

Also, you’ll frequently need to build stores, farms, bridges, and gather supplies.

Gnomes Garden

Steam Rating: ★★★★★★★★★ 9/10

Platforms: PC, Nintendo Switch, Playstation 4, Xbox One, Android

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

There once was a beautiful garden that brought joy to the people of the kingdom. But now, the dry summer has withered the said garden and the surrounding gardens, while the king has fallen ill. It’s your job to help the princess save the gardens, and help the king restore his health — with the help of the garden gnomes, of course.

Gnomes Garden Gameplay:

Throughout as much as 40 levels, you’ll need to go on a journey with the gnomes and:

  • construct buildings
  • manage the resources you have at your disposal as best as you can
  • remove obstacles
  • use magic to solve problems
  • work on repairing damaged bridges
  • carry out quests of increasing difficulty across levels

As you work your way through the plot of this magical world, you’ll need to strategize and work on your timing, in order to restore the gardens and the kingdom to their former beauty.

Viking Brothers

Steam Rating: ★★★★★★★ 7/10

Platforms: PC, Mac, iOS, Android

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

Viking Brothers is a Viking Adventure that revolves around two brothers you’ll need to guide as they battle enemies, restore their land, and search for magic items that will help them rebuild the realm.

Viking Brothers Gameplay:

The game offers an array of tasks you’ll need to complete as quickly as possible:

  • you’ll need to gather resources, clear roads and rivers, as well as rebuild bridges and towns
  • you’ll also need to explore dwarven caves, swamplands, and other adventure-filled locations
  • another type of tasks you’ll need to tackle will revolve around helping allies — you’ll need to free druids, farries, and other warriors
  • as you’d expect, you’ll also need to battle various enemies along the way
  • for your hard work and efforts, you’ll earn bronze, silver, and gold trophies

The game offers 50 levels, 4 settings, and 14 characters you’ll get to enjoy as you fast-track through tasks and experience Viking mythology across Asgard, the legendary land of gods.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Jack of all Tribes, Roads of Rome, Adelantado Trilogy, Lost Artifacts series

Lifestyle time management games

Delicious: Emily’s new beginning

Steam rating: ★★★★★★★★ 8/10

Platforms: Web, PC, Android, iOS

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

The Delicious series comes from the GameHouse Original Stories and offers a lot of different scenarios where you time manage the titular Emily’s life – this installment has you re-open a restaurant business and balance your work life with raising a baby with your husband.

Delicious: Emily’s New Beginning Gameplay:

With this game, you’ll experience the struggles of balancing work and motherhood – in gist, you’ll need to:

  • take the customer’s orders and serve them
  • prepare the food by clicking on it in a specific order
  • make sure the 4 available types of customers are happy enough to leave a tip
  • serve several customers in a row to unlock bonus chains
  • keep customers occupied with entertainers
  • keep your baby occupied with toys, and “use” her cuteness to appease to certain customers
  • unlock trophies to have someone help check on your baby, and make use of other shortcuts

For extra flair, you can try to catch Carl the Mouse – he appears in every level, and, if you click on him, you’ll be rewarded with +100 points.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: My Life Story, House Flip

Business time management games

YouTubers life

Steam rating: ★★★★★★★ 7/10

Platforms: PC, Android, iOS, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Mac, Linux

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

YouTubers Life is a business simulation game with time management elements –  the goal is to manage your character’s life while he balances his private errands, education, and the dream of becoming a YouTube personality.

YouTubers Life Gameplay:

This game simulates the life of a real aspiring YouTuber, so you’ll have to:

  • create videos for your channel
  • manage your content creation network and employees
  • decide whether you’ll accept making videos for friends
  • participate in advertising agreements in order to make money to upgrade your equipment, and level up your skills

On top of that, you’ll need to find time to attend events, interact with fans, and make sure your private life and educational aspirations don’t get sidelined in the process.

Game Dev Story

Steam rating: ★★★★★★★★★ 9/10

Platforms: PC, iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4

Player mode: Single-player, Multiplayer

Game overview:

You take control over a game developer working in a start-up – your goal is to come up with hit video games and new consoles, perform fast and quality game development, win over the critics, and earn money.

Game Dev Story Gameplay:

The gameplay mimics the life of a real-life game developer, as you’ll have to control a number of factors in order to sustain your business:

  • hire staff
  • control the direction, quality, and speed of game development
  • create games that please the critics – each game you finish is given a score from 1 to 10 and a review from a critic
  • high scores mean higher sale’s numbers, and higher sale’s numbers mean your game will rank higher

As you progress and earn more money, the building you’re working in will start to improve, you’ll be able to hire additional staff, and create better games.

RollerCoaster Tycoon Classic

Steam Rating: ★★★★★★★★★ 9/10

Platforms: iOS, Android, PC, Mac, Kindle

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

RollerCoaster Tycoon Classic is the remastered version of the original RollerCoaster Tycoon (first released in 1999) and RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 (first released in 2002) games — it revolves around the creation and management of amusement parks.

RollerCoaster Tycoon Classic Gameplay:

Within this updated version of the two most popular games in the RollerCoaster Tycoon series, you’ll get to:

  • create new roller coasters, based on pre-made designs or intuitive building tools
  • design your park in such a way that you offer an array of different rides, as well as shops, meal and beverage stalls, in order to keep your customers happy
  • organize your resources and staff well, exercise new marketing strategies, and keep an eye on finances, to help your park survive and thrive in the rollercoaster business

And, you’ll be able to do all that in a variety of different challenging environments and 95 classic park scenarios.

Miss Management

Bigfish Rating: ★★★★★ 4.5/5

Platforms: PC, Mac, iOS, Android 

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

This game from the creators of Diner Dash requires you to step into the shoes of Denise, a first-time office manager in charge of a group of 11 quirky coworkers.

Miss Management Gameplay:

The game unfolds in the form of 30 episodes of short sitcoms scenes (somewhat akin to the TV show The Office), during which you’ll need to:

  • juggle new tasks, which are color-coded, for your convenience
  • help your coworkers avoid stress and finish their tasks
  • make the most of your coworkers’ quirky and often conflicting personalities and work ethics, to help everyone achieve their goals

In the end, Miss Management may focus on the aspect of better time and resources management, but the developing story, with its amusing dialogues and characters, is the main draw of this particular game.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Game Corp, Game Dev Tycoon

Hotel time management games

Airport Rush

App Store rating: ★★★ 3/5

Platforms: Web, iOS, Android

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

Airport Rush is an airport management game where you play the traffic controller who has to manage the constant flow of airplanes and make sure no one crashes.

Airport Rush Gameplay:

The gameplay is simple, and once again, you have to make sure you manage your work as fast and accurate as you can:

  • help the passenger buy the right tickets, check-in their luggage, and go through the right boarding gate
  • help the airplanes take off in the right order so that you avoid any accidents
  • help the airplanes land on the right runway, and drop off passengers

The better you are at these tasks, the higher your score will be – you can choose between 3 different terminals, each with its own quirks.

Sally’s Spa

App Store rating: ★★★★★ 4.6/5

Platforms: Web, PC, Android, iOS

Player mode: Single-player, Multiplayer

Game overview:

You play as Sally, whose job is to arrange saunas, manicures, baths, and massages for her clients in order to maintain and expand her business.

Sally’s Spa Gameplay:

This game promises a relaxing rush, while you:

  • move customers to the right station (Spa, Sauna, Massage Table…), once they arrive
  • hire employees and choose between 65 items (such as body baths and massage oils) you can buy to help your business survive and grow
  • deal with various client personalities, such as fashionista, brides, and couples, and make sure they’re all satisfied with your services

The game offers 50 levels and 10 different locations, as well as many mini-games you can play to spice things up, such as mud masks, hot stones, bath bombs, and more.

Hotel Dash: Suite Success

Steam rating: ★★★★★★★ 7/10

Platforms: Web, PC, Android, iOS

Player Mode: Single-Player

Game overview:

Hotel Dash: Suite Success has Flo (of Diner Dash fame) and her friend Quinn renovate 5 worn out hotels for their clients.

Hotel Dash: Suite Success Gameplay:

Within this game, you’ll need to handle a number of typical hotel management tasks:

  • help your customers settle in the hotel and make sure they get their requested meals and other unique services before they lose their patience
  • tend to your customers to keep them happy – happy customers give higher tips
  • as you earn more money, you can buy more upgrades, and grow your business,

Just to make sure you don’t feel too comfortable within the game,  you’ll also often need to deal with a mysterious woman who wants to sabotage all your efforts – and find out who she is.

Theme Hotel

Crazy Games Rating: ★★★★★★★ 9.1/10

Platforms: Web, PC 

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

Theme Hotel is another great hotel-themed time management game that expects you to act as a capable manager and run everyday operations, in order to keep your customers happy and your staff productive.

Theme Hotel Gameplay:

Your main objective is to build and maintain a 5-star hotel from scratch, which is a gradual, but rewarding process in this 2D game:

  • scroll the build menu to choose rooms and organize them in your hotel
  • as you level up, you’ll unlock different types of rooms
  • hire people from the staff menu, to acquire people who’ll provide various services
  • add additional fun activities for your guests to enjoy, from gyms to bowling alleys
  • keep an eye on finances in the statist to plan the future of your hotel based on what your customers expect

At any time, you’ll have useful information about your business and the tools you have at your disposal at the bottom of the screen, so consult them when needed.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Sally’s Salon, Airport Mania, Amber’s Airline, Now Boarding: First Class, Hotel Mogul

Farming time management games

Big Farm

MMOs rating:  ★★★ 2.8/5

Platforms: Web, Android, iOS

Player mode: Single-player, Multiplayer

Game overview:

Uncle George has left you his farm – but the farm is in bad shape and you have to use all your skills and help from companions to build a reputable farm business.

Big Farm gameplay:

Your objective in Big Farm is to grow products, harvest them, and take care of your animals by:

  • building upgrades and expanding your land
  • making sure your workers are happy
  • strategizing and planning your way to a more functional farm

You’ll have plenty of items to buy to help you achieve your goals – you’ll need gold to do so, but the game also allows you to make the most of your hard work, without paying for additions within the game.

Farmerama

Facebook rating: ★★★★★ 4.3/5

Platforms: Web

Player mode: Multiplayer

Game overview:

Farmerama is another farm management game where you’re a farmer who tends to animals, grow, and harvest products. The only twist to the usual formula is that you may suffer alien attacks from time to time.

Farmerama Gameplay:

The game promises you’ll get to experience the real farm life (minus the aliens) and test out your gardening skills by:

  • raising and take care of many various animals (chickens, rabbits, and pigs included)
  • planting crops and make sure they stay healthy, year after harvesting year
  • trading products with the neighbors

You’ll also be able to enter contests and partake in the vast farming community.

Ranch Rush

Bigfish Rating: ★★★★★ 5/5

Platforms: Web, PC, Mac, iOS

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

You play as Sara, who’s determined to turn a failed nursery (owned by Jim, who’ll make Sara his business partner if she succeeds) into a successful farm on three acres of land. To thrive in this game, you’ll need to be fast, but also well-organized.

Ranch Rush Gameplay:

At its core, Ranch Rush is a simple farm-related time management game that revolves around typical farm management activities you need to carry out in a timely manner:

  • plant and harvest clovers, wheat, corn, and other similar produce
  • tend to cows, sheep, bees, and other farm animals
  • gather eggs, collect honey, and get your products to the barn on time, to ensure everything is prepared for delivery.
  • face against pests, mechanical breakdowns, and water shortages
  • tend to crops in the right order, against a ticking timer
  • compete in expert modes that require you finish orders without missing a beat in your routine
  • win trophies for your efforts

You’ll also have a chance to practice your business thinking skills — on a weekly basis, you’ll need to decide whether you want to meet new customer demand or cash in on your existing crops.

Farm Frenzy

Steam Rating: ★★★★★★★★ 8/10

Platforms: Web, PC

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

Farm Frenzy is another great farming simulator with a time management twist that puts you in the shoes of a real farmer who has to manage the typical string of tasks around a farm.

Farm Frenzy Gameplay:

Across as much as 45 levels, you’ll get to experience a wide variety of farming tasks, starting from the simple ones to the more complex endeavors. Specifically, you’ll get a chance to:

  • take care of 5 different animals
  • tend the fields and sell 9 farm products
  • invest the money you make in new equipment (such as a cheese dairy that will help you process milk into cheese)
  • purchase 6 buildings, to grow your farm

Each of the available levels is more challenging than the previous one and requires you to handle a specific task in order to progress, earn more money, and buy better equipment to make your life on the farm easier.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Dreamfields, Farming Simulator series, the rest of the Farm Frenzy series

Fashion time management games

Jojo’s Fashion Show: World Tour

Bigfish rating: ★★★★★ 4.3/5

Platforms: Web, PC, iOS, Android

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

Jojo’s Fashion Show: World Tour follows the fashion designer Jojo as she embarks on a journey around the world to dress fashion models in appropriate styles before time runs out.

Jojo’s Fashion Show: World Tour Gameplay:

The gameplay of this fashionista game is simple – do what you can with the time you have to get your models to the catwalk:

  • you get a model, and an array of make-up, clothes, and accessories to choose from in order to satisfy the runway theme, while the timer ticks
  • alter items you’re given, to fit your vision better
  • deal with fashion challenges from different countries, and be tasked to put together the perfect style for Amsterdam streets, or Urban Rasta and Royal Casual event themes.
  • your fashion shows and creations are then judged and rated

In the end, if you get at least 3 stars for your efforts, you’ll be able to progress to a new challenge.

Fabulous – Angela’s Fashion Fever

Steam Rating: ★★★★★★★★★ 9/10

Platforms: Android, PC

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

The Emily of Delicious: Emily’s new beginning fame has a fashion-oriented sister, Angela — in the game Fabulous – Angela’s Fashion Fever, you guide Angela as she strives to take over the fashion world through lovely designs and exquisite customer service.

Fabulous – Angela’s Fashion Fever Gameplay:

In this game, it’s all about the score — within each of the 90 levels (labeled as “days”), you’ll have a certain amount of time, during which you’ll need to serve as many customers as you can, to get the highest possible score. You’ll achieve this by:

  • making your customers happy through timely and accurate service — each customer will ask for a specific clothing item, and it’s your job to locate the clothing item and bring them to the customers as fast as you can
  • collecting cash from customers and occasionally cleaning up the counter after providing service
  • pursuing various combos and event completions, in order to increase your scores further

As is the case with Emily’s Delicious Series, Angela’s journey to fortune and success is also plagued with mice — quite literally, as you’ll need to locate as much as 61 mice hidden throughout the game. Clicking on a mouse when you find one will bring you +100 points.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Sally’s Salon – Beauty Secrets

Medical time management games

Heart’s Medicine – Hospital Heat

Steam Rating: ★★★★★★★★★ 9/10

Platforms: PC, Android, Mac

Player mode: Single-player

Game overview:

Heart’s Medicine – Hospital Heat is a medical drama with time management and strategy features. You play as Dr. Allison Heart, a young doctor balancing her professional medical work with a complicated personal life — and both will culminate in a fire situation at her hospital.

Heart’s Medicine – Hospital Heat Gameplay:

The gameplay involves simple time management, but with a medical twist:

  • patients with different ailments will arrive at the hospital, and you’ll need to provide them with the treatments they require
  • these treatments may involve simple medicine you need to bring to the patient — but, some of the medicine may need assembly, and some of the patients may need treatment that involves quick minigames
  • the number of patients is a challenge — you’ll need to attend to everyone as quickly as you can
  • as you play, you gain rewards — you can use these rewards to upgrade Allison’s apartment

The game also offers extras you can enjoy, such as competing against friends on one endless level, upgrading the hospital with new equipment, and even learning more about Allison’s past in this compelling story.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Heart’s Medicine – Time to Heal, Heart’s Medicine – Doctor’s Oath, Dr. Cares – Amy’s Pet Clinic

Conclusion

No matter whether you pick an online or an “offline” time management game, you’ll learn something about your time management abilities, and identify your weak areas.

“Offline” time management games you play with colleagues at the office will help you:

  • recognize your personal ideal time for important work
  • understand how your perception of time relates to your project time estimation
  • understand whether what you usually do at work leads to your expected performance
  • recognize how important it is to properly prioritize, manage time, and organize your work
  • identify and deal with your time wasters
  • understand the importance of having goals to lead you in your work

Playing video time management games can be equally eye-opening. If you find that you’re having trouble seating customers, serving orders, planning your next crop harvest, or organizing planes, this may be an indication that your real-life organization/planning/time management skills need work.

Also, multiplayer games may indicate how resourceful you are in teamwork, and whether you’re a skilled communicator and collaborator.

Overall, playing time management games from time to time is a welcome practice to help you better understand your work and life habits – just make sure you play the listed video games in moderate doses and don’t exchange your real life for a virtual one.