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Make your mark on the ink industry with Tattoo Tycoon for Android

by Caitlin M. Foyt

In Tattoo Tycoon, you're tattooing your customers with the Zodiac tramp stamp and mom/heart bicep tattoos they've always wanted. But, you always have to build the business and maintain it. The amount of detail that has gone into this Tycoon-style game makes it one of the most interesting and advanced simulation-style games available in the Android marketplace.

In the style of typical “Tycoon” games' style of gameplay, you're starting your own business and maintaining it. That means not just designing and making your place look fabulous, but you also have to hire and manage employees, create your own tattoo designs, build a reputation, keep your equipment updated and on the cutting edge, and keep tabs on an inventory of additional stuff that includes T-shirts, posters and beverages.

It's actually kind of unbelievable how much is going on in this game, as it holds the player responsible almost to a level that would be expected when running a real business.

It's not all work and no play, though. You actually get to ink those flaming hearts and tribal tattoos onto your customers. There are a bunch of fun little mini-games to be played along the way, too.

It's also fun to create your avatar, and customize your own space. You don't have quite enough modification options to make yourself look like Kat Von D (You can't even ink yourself with a sleeve!), but you can give yourself pink hair or a really intense beard. You're cramming a lot of detail on a tiny screen, but thankfully the graphics are sharp and vibrant.

Tattoo Tycoon has its own tutorial, which you can opt to check out from the app's main menu. I'll be honest, though, even after I checked out the tutorial, it took some clicking around before I really got a handle on how to play. Like I said earlier, there's a lot going on here.

The game has point-and-click-style controls, but it took a while to learn how to be precise in my clicking. Tattoo Tycoon has a lot of banner ads, and I would occasionally bump into them. Gamers who hate ads might want to check out the full version of this app, which costs $1.49.