Best dating sim
Best dating sim
Spend a little more time with them, however, and these facades dissolve, revealing complicated men whose passions, secrets and struggles cannot be neatly contained in cookie-cutter character types.Yes, the Goth Dad enjoys cloaks and long walks in graveyards, and the Jock Dad loves getting in his reps at the gym—but they both struggle to cope with rebellious children, shattered marriages, and the parts of their lives that they are ashamed to share with the world.
Although the two of you have been on your own for a while, the death of your spouse—you can specify if they were male or female—clearly still weighs on your mind.
is an unabashedly queer game, but not performatively so; it's far more interested in being than announcing.
Some of the dads have had relationships with women before, some with men, but there's no agonizing about their sexual orientation and no more mention of it than there would be in a traditionally heterosexual romance.
One of the dads, Damien, is transgender as well, though you can easily play through the game without realizing it; there's no neon sign pointing at his gender identity, only subtle hints as you get to know him better.
Like the rest of the dads, he is who he is—and he is allowed to be, without controversy.
Leighton Gray, a 19-year-old student at the Savannah College of Art and Design who created, cowrote, and art-directed , is queer herself; when she and cowriter Vernon Shaw sat down to develop the game, she says, defying stereotypes was at the forefront of their minds: “We wanted to set up expectations and knock them down.”Those complex characterizations not only make the story far more interesting, they render obsolete the usual rules of dating sims.
For all of the genre's seeming emphasis on romance, dating sims often contain a reductively transactional notion of love and sex, relying on a mechanic that independent game developer Arden once described as “kindness coins”: Put enough compliments or gifts into the object of your affection and receive sex in return.
“I’ve seen so many people who are straight or who never play videogames play it.”The simplest explanation for its broad appeal is the most obvious: It’s just a really good game.
But its subject matter—dads—also touches a nerve that resonates with just about everyone.
“You’re not going to be sleeping on a mattress surrounded by empty bottles of Mountain Dew. A daddy who has their life together enough to take care of another person is probably more emotionally mature than a twentysomething dude might be.”If ’s hit status suggests any one thing, though, it's that entrenched ideas about what kind of games can be successful and who wants to play them have less to do with reality and more to do with the self-fulfilling prophecy that the industry has become.
“The argument ‘oh, I don’t know if it’s going to sell’ isn’t going to fly anymore," Gray says.
"We can have narratives that are about queer people that are not necessarily about being queer.