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.

Haru can be pretty pushy and consent can seem hazy at times, but all the relationship routes in the game play out in a compelling manner and Haru's prodding of boundaries leads to intriguing character insights. is not just a constant sex romp -- it's got a pretty extensive private detective and mafia story leading the actors along, and not always to the happiest conclusions.

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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.

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.

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.Generally you meet several characters, and will have to choose one to court.In Japan, dating sim characters are referred to as “capturable” -- whether that means you capture their hearts or their bodies depends on the game.The Niflheim is probably one of the best free-to-play mobile otome game examples that I can give.The game has a bold art style with intense flourishes, and while you play as a Shadow Every-Girl, all your your potential partners range from bratty kings to zombies to ghosts.I say "targets" because all the men you end up in relationships with are billed as "straight" and Haru is an overly-energetic, horny puppy who admits he partakes in "sexual harassment" as a work pastime.