A Banana style idle game called Hamster is blowing up on Steam

Create a platform of any kind on the modern internet and it won’t be long until enterprising users figure out strange new ways to exploit it. Steam, despite being around for quite a while now, is no exception, with extremely simple idle or clicker games popping up on the storefront and climbing the charts based on the absurdity of their premises. In the past, we’ve seen games like Banana and Cats trend, their take on a genre once dominated by Cookie Clicker, Idle Champions of the Forgotten Realms, and AFK Journey boiled down to their foundations — and made a bit more nefarious by offering chances to collect item drops that can be sold for real money. The latest of these is called Hamster and, as its title suggests, it involves clicking (and clicking and clicking) on an image of a hamster.

Hamster doesn’t have much to it. It’s a free clicker game where players, well, click on a low resolution image of a hamster. Sometimes, clicking on the hamster makes it shiver. Sometimes, the hamster will shiver more noticeably or less. The Steam page promises that “you can collect heaps of different kinds of hamsters for your Steam Inventory by just playing the game,” adding that these drops occur “every 90 minutes.”

While these items can be used as skins, they’re also available as MTX purchases, which are basically just versions of the hamster image with stuff like devil horns or bigger eyes slapped onto the original picture. This pseudo-NFT style design has attracted a lot of players. While only 70 players are clicking away right now, Hamster hit its 24 hour and all time peak earlier today, drawing in 16,988 players.

As always with these kinds of games, there’s a strong possibility that bots, run by players hoping to earn item drops that can be sold for actual money, have inflated player counts and shone a spotlight on a slapdash game that isn’t really worth playing on its own merits.

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If you’d rather take a look at other free options that provide a bit more to engage with, check out our top free PC games and free Steam games instead.

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