Universal Paperclips is not a game you can explain to other people without putting them to sleep, even if it’s addictive to play. It’s all about managing supply and demand as you gradually build a mighty corporative empire of…well, paperclips. Your goal is to sell more paperclips, always more paperclips. You want to make more money off those paperclips so you can invest in more things that will let you make paperclips faster.
At least, that’s how it starts. As your empire grows, your computers will start to do some interesting things for you that begin to reach beyond mere paperclips. Universal Paperclips has three main stages, and once you finish stage 1, your goals and resources will drastically change. For this guide, we’ll focus on getting through stage 1 efficiently. There’s no real way to “game over” Universal Paperclips, and all goals are obtainable eventually no matter how you play. But these tips and tricks will help you get through those paperclips and work on drone manufacturing much faster!
Buy Cheap Wire
Something you’ll want to keep in mind that isn’t immediately obvious is that wire price fluctuates, constantly. After a certain point, you won’t need to worry about wire much at all, but especially in stage 1, it’s easy to run out of wire and not notice. Don’t let this happen. No wire means no paperclips, which means no money is coming in at all. Wire prices can drop as low as $10 (maybe even lower!), so buy wire when they are at or around that number. Don’t buy it at higher prices unless you’re desperate…but don’t get desperate. Buy a lot of wire when it’s cheap and keep an eye on prices once you start to drop into the lower thousands (or higher, as you progress through stage 1)
Price = Speed
Your paperclips will sell for whatever price you set them at to a point. If you want to sell them for $5, you absolutely can, it will just take an awful long time to do it. If you have time to kill, it’s actually beneficial to sell at ridiculously high prices. But you might not want to bother with that. If you want fast-selling paperclips, you’ll have to drop your prices low at the start–$.10 or so at the beginning of the game will give you enough demand to get the machine moving. You can raise them gradually as you improve your marketing.
Either way to play is valid, but it’s important to be aware of the time/cost consequences of either.
Don’t Overclip it
Even though Universal Paperclips is touted as an autoclicker, you don’t actually have to do that much clicking. As soon as you buy your first Autoclipper, you can leave the game alone and it will clip for you at a reasonable rate. Though it may be tempting to buy a bunch of clippers early on, it’s better to put your money into marketing at first once you have 2-3 clippers going. 2-3 is plenty to keep up with demand until you can up your demand. You don’t want a ton of unsold inventory sitting around–it’s a waste of your resources. That said, it’s good to have at least some buffer in case you make a decision, then close your phone and find you’ve sold through all your stock and haven’t made any money for hours.
After a point, you will get a computational resource that will allow you to accumulate Trust, which can be spent on either Memory (dictating how many Operations you can have stored) and Process (how fast you accumulate Operations). Memory is more important than Process, since the rewards you can spend your Ops on will often exceed your maximum Memory. Aim for 6 Processes, 9 Memory first, then gradually keep building up Memory to 12. Your goal at this point is to acquire Hypno Harmonics, which will allow you to raise your paperclip price dramatically.
- You will eventually need 75 autoclippers for a major upgrade. Don’t rush this, but around Trust 15 or so you’ll find it gets harder and harder to acquire the next Trust upgrade, and that’s when you should really start buying up autoclippers. More upgrades are available beyond that.
- It’s okay to let demand go above 100%, but keep it at or below for the very beginning of the game or you’ll run out of paperclips far too fast.
- WireBuyer isn’t worth it until you’re very secure financially. Stock up on cheap wire where possible; don’t let the game buy you wire at high prices.
- “Release the Hypnodrones” is the project that will move you to Stage 2, so be aware of that when you opt to start it.