Dating sims with more than one gender of LI?

How do you feel about a dating sim game that has mostly male or female love interests, but has one opposite option?

I’ve been working on an eroge (adult dating sim) for awhile with all female LIs. If I could practice drawing men well enough, or hire another artist, I’d probably do a sequel with all-male love interests. Players in either game could be male/female/other. By categories, this would potentially make game #1 harem(?)/yuri, and game #2 otome/yaoi.

I’ve been thinking about including one path in each game of the opposite gender, but am not sure that one character would be able to connect to enough players to be worth it. How do you feel when a game includes diversity of gender options, but only for one character, so it’s obviously geared to different preferences than yours?

Including LIs that are neither male nor female is a slightly different topic, but we don’t have one for that yet, so feel free to talk about how to do that here. I’ve also been thinking about how to incorporate that, but it seems slightly less difficult than the “one universally charming yaoi path to rule them all” problem.


As long as I can play as female and there is at least 1 female RO I’m happy, there is a game that came out not too long ago called Choices and in the book The Freshman they did exactly that (2 male RO, 1 female) and honestly I adored her character so much that even if ALL the characters were ROs I’d have still picked her, so IMO it’s all about how well that single character is.

One thing I could certainly caution is how you approach the character’s “default” orientation, in that game despite the fact that I rejected 100% of the advances made by the guys and flirted with the girl there was still dialogue that my character had feelings for the guys and was confused :rolling_eyes: Thankfully it was fixed it book 2, but it still bothered me throughout the entire first story that I felt the guys forced on me.

Good luck with this! I’m still looking forward to seeing the first game asap :smiley:


As long as I can play a female MC I can get behind the project with either set-up. I have a harder time relating to non-historical male genderlocked games but RO aren’t as important to me (personally) as the possibility for true friendship

Although I do bet I’m in the minority here - the “soap-opera love merry-go-round” is a very popular set-up in this community it seems.


So u also played choices: stories you play

Oh my soul THANK YOU.

I was like: Okay, who we gonna romance? Then I saw Kaitlyn, and decided: YES, SHE’S ADORABLE, HAVEN’T FLIRTED WITH ANYONE SO FAR, MY CHARACTER IS GONNA BE LESBIAN!

Then I’m being thrown at Chris repeatedly, and everyone is like: Hit on himmmm aren’t you jealous, look at that woman stealing yo man!

I’m standing there, trying to cuddle Kaitlyn.

Wait, why am I jealous again?


I had to take some time to think of a response, but… ultimately? I don’t think I’d be interested in purchasing a dating sim with an all-female ensemble that has only one gent to romance. Even if there was the one gent available to me if I were to roll a gay male PC, I would wind up feeling… cheated? It’s a dating sim, and one of the main selling points of the genre is having a variety of characters to pick from. If it were the opposite case, where the game featured an all-male ensemble with one gal, I would be all over that because it caters to what I’m interested in.

Even if I was interested in the lore and universe of the game, I’d wind up feeling railroaded into going with the one singular male option that I might not actually be interested in. Do you know of Fire Emblem: Fates? They decided to try and be progressive this time around and allow same-sex romances, but they only added 1 male and 1 female that could be romanced by a PC of either sex/gender. Now, that normally wouldn’t be an issue except they decided to give these two characters the most problematic traits ever. The one option I had available as a gay player had sadomasochistic tendencies, and that was just not appealing to me at all.

My suggestion would be to just leave it as a full-ensemble of either gender. I like that there would be a choice of the PC’s gender, but it’s too potentially isolating to just toss in the one, singular character of the opposite gender. That’s what the sequel/following game would be for.


My feelings are probably quite similar to @Lithophene’s: while I would have no problem seeking out the single male RO in a free dating sim, I certainly wouldn’t spend any money on such a game. Even in ChoiceScript games, where romance is often secondary to the plot, I’ll want at least two guys to choose from. I must be one of the very few people in the world who preferred Dragon Age 2 to Dragon Age Origins, and the multiple potential gay romances was one of the reasons (sarcastic Hawke was the other).

I greatly enjoyed Awakening (even though I had to play as a girl to get Chrom), but this is the reason why I never bothered with Fates. So, ironically, adding a gay option actually made the game less desirable to me. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


I can definitely understand that perspective, but as it stands most dating sim games that I’ve seen are still heterosexual only, and honestly I’m grateful when I see at least 1 girl I can romance, that’s still considered a win to me sadly. Ultimately yes, it would be wonderful if there was equal opportunity for you no matter your gender identity or sexual orientation, but sadly that is still in the future :cry:


Call me bitter, but I’ve grown to dislike token gay/lesbian options. :sweat_smile: It winds up feeling shallow and tacked on half the time. There’s also the chance that said token character does not appeal to you whatsoever. In a game of choice, that’s… not a good thing.

An RPG came out a few months back called The Technomancer. The protagonist is locked as a male, but there are 2 female love interests and 1 male love interest. Guess whose romance arc got completely skimmed over in the epilogue? :unamused: I love the character, Andrew’s a bae, but I still got shafted for pursuing the one option I was interested in.

Meanwhile, allow me to share art my friend did for me of that game. I was completely happy with it til the epilogue where I got shafted. My headcanon is the only thing that kept me from getting salty to high heavens.


And that is why I say “IMO it’s all about how well that single character is” another example of this was Liana and Liara from Dragon Age:Origins and Mass Effect respectivly, both of them were my only ROs…Don’t even think gay men got a RO in ME1 come to think of it. In both those games though while they were the only females (neither one of them actually being female only ROs) I could romance I honestly really enjoyed both characters, to the point in ME2 when Liara said we were done (before the DLC) I wanted to just stop playing the game! I told my friend “The galaxy can get saved by someone else, I’m going to get drunk and cry.” If you’re going to make only a single option, then hopefully they are a really good option.

Anyway, speaking of dating options, I have a story to work on :smile:

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I’m just salty 'cause they could’ve (and should’ve) made the childhood best friend that will follow and support you regardless of which route (out of 3) you take in the main storyline the male bisexual option. That would’ve been great. It would’ve been compelling and emotional, but nooo… they decided to cave into the Depraved Bisexual tropes for both of the bisexual options.

There weren’t any options for us until ME3. :unamused: Don’t even get me started on the fact we didn’t get no alien lovers. Here’s hoping they rectify that in Andromeda, but that’s for another topic. I’ll bite my tongue. :stuck_out_tongue:


I would be down with that.

As a few others have stated, some people don’t care for a ‘token’ one person romance (and I totally get where they are coming from!), many games do get released with one option so the market may be there to support it.

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Also, both characters are in separate games, so you have to buy the right version (or pay extra for the DLC), and you can’t get the child characters (because apparently this war-torn nation hasn’t heard of adoption :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:).

I’ve heard that the Japanese version is even worse, and has the male MC trick a lesbian into drinking a gay cure love potion in order to romance her (and, of course, the female MC can’t romance her at all…). Yeah, I think I’ll have to keep avoiding that.

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Honestly? I don’t give a damn who I romance. As long as the character is likeable and romanceable, I’m down with them. Whether they be male, female, trans, aliens, dinosaurs, pigeons or robots, straight, gay or bi, as long as they’re interesting and likeable I’ll go for their route!


OMG! That is beyond horrifying to me…I mean no offence to the guys out there but…:rage:

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Nope also preferred DA2 here, though Fenris really was the only choice for me there, but sarcastic Hawke made up for that. :wink: Plus Fenris and sarcastic mage Hawke was awesome.

Well Kaidan was meant to be there right in ME1 but he was cut by idiot Microsoft execs for some reason. :rage: There is mods that make that romance mostly accessible.

I agree, I hate the “pray the gay away” so-called solutions or “cures” and their even worse, effortless magical varieties.
I also hated that bit of background with Dorian, but at least they didn’t present it as effortless and risk free but as something with a high chance to have left the poor kid as a drooling idiot.


Ashley was always supposed to be open to girls, in fact the dialogue left in is almost suggestive

Totally, nothing irritates me more than being told I should be or can be “fixed” or “cured” like there is anything wrong with me :angry: Thankfully with Dorian there is also the added point that the Tevinter Imperium is also painted as a government of complete jerks…so it’s not like anyone can take them seriously.


I like and prefer dating sims were I can date men and women more than the ones where I can date just men or just women, but that is probably because I like both…

It should depend on what game you want to make and what kind of target group you are interested in. If you want to make a game that is catering to gals that like other gals, then I don’t think it is necessary to give the player the option to date a guy. In your case where the player can be anything they want to be I don’t see why you shouldn’t throw a guy or two in there.

edit: I just remembered the dating sim “Hustle Cat” where the player could be male/female/other, that had six love interests, two female and four male, if I remember correctly. Maybe that could be relevant to you?

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This might not be the right place to post this… But this does seem to be a thread about dating sims with more than one gender… :grin: So I thought I’d share this here:
The company has multiple games with a choice of a male or female MC and multiple gender romances, my favorite being Loren The Amazon Princess, of course.


As long as the roster isn’t crammed with bishie or other pandering I don’t really care what gender they are.