Welcome to Otome, visual dating games made with women in mind.
They enjoy a healthy fandom, but many acclaimed titles remain in their native Japanese—frustrating, because romance and relationship games are more popular than ever.
While it was initially influenced by Japanese BL games, it covers more Western sensibilities. is currently available on PC only from Manga Gamer directly (though I’m told it can work on Mac via a Windows virtual machine). Korean company Cheritz has been releasing their Japanese-style dating sim games into English for a couple of years now, and recently got those games onto Steam through Greenlight.
Their latest, Nameless, is quite beautiful and differs from their last entry, Dandelion, in that it does not contain stats and instead is a straight up visual novel.
Lots of players get turned onto these aspects from story and character-driven Bio Ware games like Dragon Age, and if you’re a fan of those, I have a few recommendations to help welcome you into the otome genre.
While all you need to be “good at” is reading and making choices -- don’t worry if you don’t normally play games -- there are some important things to know about how these games work.
Part of the problem is that most of the games aren’t just extremely niche, they’re erotic 18 products and as such difficult to market. Last year Manga Gamer, a publisher usually known for its 18-and-older fare aimed at men, announced that they've licensed and are translating two new titles in an attempt to appeal to underserved audiences, mainly women and queer men. , slated to release on Steam, and the other is unique 18 boys love game, No, Thank You!!!
It sounds ridiculous, and she reacts to the situation as pretty much anyone would.
Sloppy localization can often let dating sim fans down.
For example, Alice in Wonderland is a popular theme worldwide and the manga based on the otome game series regularly tops the New York Times Manga Best Sellers list.
But I can’t recommend the i OS/Android port of the game, because of its atrocious, machine-like translation.
It's such a pity, because I think a game of that caliber would have been perfect to link to people asking me for good examples of dating sims. : THE NIFLHEIM is currently available for free download with in-app purchases fori OS and Android.