Melvor Idle: Runescape but Grindier

I went down a Reddit rabbit hole last weekend and ended up in the Incremental Games subreddit. Idle games have fascinated me since I discovered the genre a few years ago. On the surface, they seem pointless. Why would I play a game that plays itself? But when you dig deeper there’s a bit more of a strategy/resource management thing going on. Mix that with some theory crafting for efficiency and now we start to see a game take shape. They’re like really, really, slow Tycoon games.

Idle games happen to be one of my guilty pleasure games. I don’t play them often but when the mood strikes I find them endlessly entertaining. The best ones usually have some form of progression, obtainable goals to work towards, and resets that provide benefits for the next playthrough. They also provide both idle and active play. I’m not so much a fan of the “clicker” games because I happen to like my mouse. I prefer the lower action per minute games where I can turn a nob here or there every so often. Or just leave it to sit offline and gather resources.

I highly recommend Kittens and Trimps as examples of, what I would consider, good idle games. And now I can confidently add Melvor Idle to that list. I’ve been “playing” it a ton this week.

Melvor Idle is what you get when you strip Old School Runescape down to the numbers and skills. Or if you had a bot going 24/7… In fact, you could argue that Runescape is just a really needy idle game already and I wouldn’t disagree.

The game draws a lot of inspiration from Runescape. The skills have the same name and they feed into each other which is something I’ve always loved about Runescape. Surprisingly, combat feels exactly the same as Runescape. That’s probably because Runescape’s combat is fairly simple anyways. But the most important part for me is that the progression (i.e. grind) feels fun and rewarding so far. Not only do the skills level up but there are levels inside of levels called Mastery. I’m a bit iffy on how mastery works right now but it looks like a promising system.

At any rate, it’s free, it’s fun, and it’s holding much more my attention than I thought it would!