Gameplay In the beginning, the player clicks on a cookie to earn one cookie per click. With the cookies generated by these clicks, the player can purchase items and upgrades. For example, the player can increase the number of cookies per click by paying for a cursor with a particular number of cookies. Many items such as grandmas, farms, factories, mines, shipments, alchemy labs, portals and time machines can also be purchased to produce cookies at a much faster rate. These items multiply the number of cookies and in turn, you can buy more items and expand your cookie empire to millions, billions and even trillions of cookies. Golden cookies are small cookies that appear and fade away from time to time. These golden cookies grant bonus cookies as well as increase the rate of cookie production for a short time. For the most part of the game, the cost of these items increases with the cookie production rate. Nevertheless, the costs of items are low as compared to the extremely high production rate of cookies in the later stages of the game. As the game progresses, the player's choice of items also changes and instead of opting for initial items such as grandmas and farms, they seek to acquire bigger and more powerful items such as portals and time machines that help acquire millions of cookies at once. Cheats and add-ons have also been developed and are available easily. These cheats and add-ons are implemented through consoles and are very easy to develop for programmers due to the simple code of the game.
A never ending game, Cookie Clicker is addictive because it gives the player a sense of achievement as they acquire millions of virtual cookies by just clicking on one. The game ensures that the player never abandons it because even if it is played for thirty to sixty minutes per day, the next day when the player revisits the game, their cookie count would have increased exponentially, which gives them the motivation to keep playing. Even if the cookie count is virtual, the business acumen that a player gains from it is real. Even if it's simple clicking, the idea that a player started from zero cookies and within a short span of time has reached trillions of cookies by investing time and effort is what keeps them going. The only cure for the addiction to an idle game is that you jump from one ship to another and find a new idle game that seems different and more interesting than the last one but in principle is more or less the same.