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Dating simulators and visual novels may be a bit niche. Within the games, players are actively working to romance a character throughout the gameplay campaign. If you’re in the market for something new to play and would like to try out some visual novels or dating simulators that are available today then check out our list down below.
#13 Tricolour Lovestory
Tricolour Lovestory is set up like a typical dating sim game. It’s a narrative-driven game where players are taking the role of a high school student named Ashley. Ashley takes up art as a class when our protagonist learns that his family will be away due to a work trip. Finding his love rekindling for art, our protagonist befriends a new student named Violet. However, it’s not long after that Ashely finds another childhood sweetheart, Daisy pops back up in the picture. How this narrative will play out for Ashely is up to the players. Fortunately, it’s also a game that’s relatively inexpensive to pick up at just $1.99.
#12 Everlasting Summer
Another visual novel you might find of interest is Everlasting Summer. This game is centered around an ordinary young man named Semyon. One day when Semyon falls asleep on a bus during the dead of winter, he awakens to a hot, bustling summer. Now located in a camp, players will have to interact with the different NPCs to figure out what is happening. However, during his journey of finding a way back home, our protagonist might uncover their true love. If that happens, it might mean staying put rather than going back to his ordinary life.
#11 I Love You Colonel Sanders
Come on you knew we had to put this game on here since it just came out in 2019 and chances are if you’re just getting into dating simulators you might have missed the game launch. KFC was putting out quite a few unique marketing attempts to get people into their chain restaurant with this dating simulator being quite unusual.
Players take the role of a culinary student that’s working alongside the young Colonel Sanders. Here you’re working at becoming a great chef while also attempting to date the iconic KFC mascot. Along the way, you’ll have some mini-games to play as well and similar to other games within the genre plenty of conversations will be had with various characters. While this is a wacky game on the list, you won’t have to pay a cent for this dating sim experience as it’s completely free on Steam.
Huniepop is one of the games you’ll see pop up quite a bit in recommendation lists and even on Steam for dating simulation games. This is a title that’s part dating sim and part puzzle game. Players follow a protagonist that fails to pick up a girl named Kyu. However, Kyu turns out to be a magical love fairy who decides to help you out by meeting new women. With that said, this is a mature game where players are attempting to do the deed with characters.
Meanwhile, a good portion of the game is based around puzzle solving that’s quite a bit like Candy Crush where players are actively trying to lineup matching up three items together to rack up points. The better you get at these puzzles the easier you’ll have at entertaining the individual which will leave you with some rather risque photos.
#9 Persona 4 Golden
The Persona franchise is well-beloved, and after the incredible success with Persona 5, we’re eagerly awaiting to see what Atlus does with Persona 6. With that said, you could look at Persona 4 Golden if you haven’t played the installment yet. This is an enhanced port for the Persona 4 video game. There were quite a few additions made to this game if you enjoyed the original installment on the PlayStation 2. You have new difficulty settings, characters, animations, and more. There is quite a bit of debate online on whether this game is a dating sim or not. There is some relationship maintaining in the campaign, but it’s still a solid RPG experience where you’re going through dungeons, battling enemies, and trying to solve a mystery. If you have already played Persona 5, this might be a title worth checking out until we get the next mainline installment release.
#8 Senren Banka
Senren Banka is a visual novel that takes place in Japan. Set in a distant village called Hoori, which has remained mainly untouched by civilization advances, the area becomes a tourist attraction for people all over the world. Due to its beautiful visuals and hot springs, most civilians stop in for a nice getaway and to attempt at pulling out the iconic Murasamemaru, a blade stuck in a stone that no one has been able to pull out.
Here our protagonist does the unthinkable while attempting to pull the sword out of the stone, he accidentally breaks it in half. This has forced the village to pay his debts by marrying the shrine maiden. Here players will attempt to connect with the maiden while also learning the secrets of the Hoori village.
#7 Stardew Valley
Stardew Valley may seem like an interesting choice here as it’s a farming simulator game. The title was developed as a spiritual successor to the old-school Harvest Moon franchise. Here players take the role of a character that’s had enough of the bustling city life and decides to spend their time fixing up their grandfather’s old farm. Here players are then spending most of their time pulling weeds, tilling the lands, laying down crops, and maintaining their livestock.
However, you’ll also get to meet the townsfolk and participate in different events. Likewise, players can date the various single characters within the game and eventually enter a long-lasting marriage. Those of you who may not want a full-on dating simulator to take the full focus of a game might find Stardew Valley a nice entryway into the genre.
Synergia is more of a visual novel where players are thrown into the future. Here players are following a police officer named Cila who has trouble connecting with anyone outside of her new household android named Mara. It’s after Mara’s creation that Cila begins to find someone, or something, to connect with, but not long after a corporation gets wind of Mara and wishes to use it as a means to a new operation.
A new war is brewing and it looks as if Mara could be the means of peace. If you’re interested in visual novels then you might find quite a bit of enjoyment in this new dystopia neon-filled setting. Gameplay will take players just under ten hours while the choices you make will alter the storyline narrative. As a result, there are a few different endings you might get with this game which means there’s some replay value here if you’re interested in unlocking all of the game endings.
#5 Doki Doki Literature Club
Doki Doki Literature Club is far from a game that looks anything remotely like a horror video gameplay experience. On the surface, Doki Doki Literature Club is a visual novel, one that likely follows a dating simulation. The surface is incredibly misleading. This is a psychological horror game that toys with the players. As the deeper you get into the narrative and date the various characters, the more unsettling the game becomes. Unfortunately, this is a game that I really can’t dive into with the premise as it would spoil too much and it’s a title that’s best going into without really any knowledge other than knowing that it’s quite the unsettling horror dating sim gameplay experience. Best of all, much like the KFC dating simulator we mentioned above, this is also a free game on Steam.
#4 Lucy The Eternity She Wished For
Lucy The Eternity She Wished For is a visual novel that follows a boy during a futuristic world setting. Hunks of android metal have become the norm in civilization which has helped make the lives of humans a bit easier. While these androids are just barren with no personality, our protagonist happens to stumble upon an android, not like the others at a dumpsite. This android expresses emotions and dreams leaving our protagonist in awe. It’s a relatively short journey of just a few hours so we’ll avoid going any further into the narrative. However, prepare for quite a surprising ending.
#3 Hatoful Boyfriend
Hatoful Boyfriend is a unique dating sim that came out and took quite a few people by storm. It’s a dating simulator where you’re a human that’s been accepted to a prestigious school for pigeon. Players attend different classes and meet with unique pigeons. Just like a normal visual novel dating sim game you’re getting to know the different pigeons and interacting with them as you divert your time between school and meeting with these birds. Of course, the narrative is what shines here with different plots both lighthearted and at times dark. While the front of the game seems to be pretty comical, those that want a narrative to keep you progressing forward just to see how it all ends won’t want to pass up on this title.
#2 Monster Prom
Monster Prom throws players into a high school full of monsters. Your goal is to find a prom date within the next three weeks and to do so you’ll need to build up a relationship. The game is set up in where players are given the choice in where you would like to spend your time during the game each day and depending on where you choose will determine what attributes will be leveled up for your character with that corresponding area.
It’s after selecting a specific area of the school you’ll get to chat with the potential love interest and attempt to woo them into a potential relationship in time for the upcoming prom. Since there are so many different characters to interact with, you’ll find that there are multiple endings to be unlocked here so get ready to settle in on replaying this game to see how the potential endings each character has.
#1 Monster Prom 2: Monster Camp
It’s worth bringing out Monster Prom 2: Monster Camp as well. Most of the gameplay mechanics from the first game are here so if you’re coming off from the first installment you won’t find much has changed here. What’s changed is that instead of being in a school, players are instead at a camp with their favorite monster pals. Players are going through the game working on the different stats to get a love interest with one of the members of your group.
This is done by again deciding where you want to spend your time during the day and interacting with a monster from that area. Likewise you’ll go into a conversation and attempt to pick the right answers to improve your relationship with that individual. Interestingly enough this game features online multiplayer, somewhat similar to the original game, but in this sequel up to four players join into a game to compete with striking up a relationship with the different characters. This makes the gameplay a challenge as you attempt to increase your stats while also potentially blocking out players from entering a certain area of the map.