It’s a subversion of dating sims that is not just the best dating sim I’ve ever played but also one of the best games of the year.At first glance, the game's romantic roster looks like a who’s who of sexy stereotypes: the bad boy, the jock, the sensitive artist, the clean-cut hunk.So you certainly don’t need to be a hentai game fan to be familiar with dating sim elements.In fact, after even only a little bit of exposure, you may notice a few repetitive archetypes. Remember when we rounded up some of the most common archetypes of eroge games?We’re going to offering some hints at how to get the most out of all manner of dating sims, along with some places to start.If you’ve ever been curious about the genre, this is your excuse to jump in. Bad ends, like the aforementioned assassination, exist to teach players how to engage with most dating sims.In the game you greet and interact with new characters, all of whom fall in the MBTI Guardian category.The ending reveals the personality type of the character you romanced but, more intriguingly, also reveals the personality type of the character you played as.
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.Dating sim mechanics really shine when they’re used to enhance the sense of humanity in otherwise unemotional titles.The long-running Natsume-published Harvest Moon series, for example, adds partner selection and marriage to place a sense of real life alongside what’s largely a farming/raising and resource management sim; Natsume’s latest offering, the Cave-developed Princess Debut, places dating sim elements alongside a rhythm game in a young maiden’s quest to get ready for the glamorous ball.Along the way, the player can begin friendships and relationships with the various members of the group, including a selkie a long way away from home, a gentle-giant orcish warrior, and a polyamorous trio of orc chieftains.
You can get updates and ask questions about Tusks over on the Tusks tumblr page, and you can support Tusks' development by pledging via Patreon or buying some extended universe fiction!
Dating sims and Myers-Briggs Personality Types—for a combination that goes together like crackers and Brie, it’s taken way too long to appear.