Poll: Romance in Games, what's your take?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by watermark, May 24, 2016.

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What kind of love story is your favorite?

  1. Fairy Tale: The protagonist quests for love, but the love interest is more of a MacGuffin goal than

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  2. Classic Hollywood: Boy meets girl (you can substitute the genders here), boy loses girl, boy gets gi

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  3. More than Friends: The would-be-lovers start with zilch chemistry but after much trial and adversit

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  4. Love Triangle: The protagonist must make the difficult choice between two equally suitable love inte

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  5. Anime Polyhedron: The protagonist gets involved with a harem of love interests. Story usually ends w

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  6. Choose-your-own-love: The player through in-game choices determines who the protagonist ends up with

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  7. Star Crossed: The love affair ends tragically. E.g. FF7.

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  8. Forbidden Love: Including all of them paranormal teenage vampire stories, angel/demon pairups, and f

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  9. Second Chances: Story of former lovers meeting years later and getting together for real this time.

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  10. Family Matters: Story of a married couple or family of adventurers. A more mature and stable love.

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  11. Friendship: You prefer games about friends and their relationships rather than romantic love.

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  12. Other: I am sure I missed a lot of other types. Feel free to post any I've missed.

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  1. watermark

    watermark Veteran Veteran

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    Thought it'd be fun to do a poll to see what people think of romance in games. What kind of love stories do you like to see in games?
     
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  2. XIIIthHarbinger

    XIIIthHarbinger Part Time Super Villain Veteran

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    I would have to say I very much prefer games in which the decision of the love interest or lack thereof is up to the player. When you have multiple prospective partners it adds replay value to a game.


    As for preference for games where such a possibility is included, I would say yes with a qualifier. Quite obviously some games types are not well suited to such a plot element, 4Xs & RTSs for example, & I've never been a fan of plot filler that doesn't really fit with the theme of the overall story, in any medium really. 
     
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  3. Rukomura

    Rukomura Lurker Member

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    I don't really mind romance if It's well done and the characters and their relationship is very likeable. I also am a lover of the best friends-turning-lovers trope, although other ways of presenting love is appreciated as well. Maybe I don't really like the "Hollywood" one as it looks very forced to me. Again, It's the writing and the overall tone of the game (or any other medium, really) that matters and justifies the love affair. Of course, if it isn't really required it mustn't be forced, instead using any other type of love (friendship, brotherly love and so on).
     
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  4. bgillisp

    bgillisp Global Moderators Global Mod

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    I don't mind it, as long as it is not forced into the game just to have a romance.
     
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  5. Iliketea

    Iliketea Tea lover Veteran

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    I do have a maybe couple in my game, but it doesnt really fit any type you posted :D
     


    In my case it is a love story that only becomes one if you follow the right events.


    Both people are part of the main cast, but while he does have some interest in her, she doesnt like him because of his character and because.... he has green hair. She really hates the color green. 


    Bit by bit they get along better, the man realizes that there is a reason he likes to tease her, grows protective and kinder towards her, she accepts his characters and realizes that while he is a liar, cheater and seems to not much things serious he actually cares about what is important to him alot  leading to them confessing their love to eachother before the final battle~~


    The reason I made this love story was to annoy the friend that the woman is based on ( hated green) XD But now I grew really fond of this couple >< 
     
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  6. Niten Ichi Ryu

    Niten Ichi Ryu Grey Lords Emissary Veteran

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    I'm considering romance options for my game as in the love triangle, that I voted for, but as it involves nobility, I'm probably going to explore possible choices between love and politics.


    Probably will have to choose between two noble brides equally suitable but with different affinities and outcomes in terms of political weight and alliance, with an optional romancing of a female companion (probably a commoner, or low nobility) that could become an issue due to the need for a political alliance via marriage. mix of love/interest triangle and star crossed lovers. Would echo stories of problematic love from the past of the setting, as main character is a lovable.
     
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  7. TheOriginalFive

    TheOriginalFive Veteran Veteran

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    I prefer to focus on purely friendships. A lot of my characters don't have explicitly stated paramours except for Atroxia, although he won't appear in the Mechanical Armageddon's present, being from another timeline and all that.
     
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  8. Ms Littlefish

    Ms Littlefish Dangerously Caffeinated Global Mod

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    I don't mind romance in games. But, if it's not a core theme of the game I do get annoyed if the main plot starts getting massively sidetracked by it. That feeling isn't exclusive to romance though. I actually really do like taking deviations but I usually like side quests and optional content to do that. 


    Also, the major problem I have with romance subplots is much of the time the "romance" tends to be shallow, undeveloped, and just because. Lastly, I selected family matters because I don't think games explore marital love often enough. 
     
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  9. terrorchan

    terrorchan Literally a Gloop Veteran

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    I tend to find it extremely annoying if I don't think the characters have chemistry. Most of the times, the dev just takes the main female and male characters and force them together even if it feels awkward to the viewer. I personally love the choose your partner thing, though. Let me choose! 
     
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  10. watermark

    watermark Veteran Veteran

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    I agree with what most said here. Arbitrary romance and the sometimes accompanying sex scenes, though sometimes titillating, makes one want to roll their eyes and go, 'That was totally just an excuse for the actors to get nakid.'  :D


    @Niten Ichi Ryu That's quite an interesting story. Makes me want to play your game to see how it turns out.  :)  Your challenge will be to convince us players of the equal attractiveness of the two and the tragedy of having to forsake one of them. I might not add a third as it might be too complicated and take away from the charm of the two. But if you do go for the commoner option, since you say politics is important in your game, perhaps you can emphasize the repercussions of such an act. Like how that turned out for Robb in ASOIAF. 


    @Ms Littlefish I agree lots of game romance is shallow. But I must say writing good romance is hard. The writer must capture that perfect balance between reality and fantasy. It must feel real, but not mundane. Cause let's be honest here, 'real' romance can sometimes be less than exciting. ('So, did you guys meet while fighting mutant zombies on a cruise?' 'Uh. No, we met through a dating site...then we went to a movie and dinner. Oh and then we went bowling. That's exciting right?')
     
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  11. Ms Littlefish

    Ms Littlefish Dangerously Caffeinated Global Mod

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    @watermark Absolutely, I think I was referring more to game romances where two sections of the game pass and all of a sudden two characters go from "Nice to meet you!" to "You're my soul mate and we're divinely intertwined." In games we often want to escape many facets of reality and the backstory will have extraordinary circumstances. However, a lot of the time the only chemistry and growth we see between the characters is "Well, they're nice to each other, I guess." So many otherwise fantastically written plots have a "they're an item because we say so" subplot shoehorned in.
     
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  12. Niten Ichi Ryu

    Niten Ichi Ryu Grey Lords Emissary Veteran

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    Actually the attractiveness would be greatly influenced by the political might, as you might not actually love either one, but would have to choose one anyway (medieval political marriage a la ASOIAF indeed) and have to deal with the consequences.  No the tragedy could come from pursuing romance with the companion, but being unable to legitimize her, as you would have to go for a political alliance. So would you have her a concubine, will she accept it, and worst, as a lovable yourself, would you risk fathering a lovable? And if you choose to marry AND keep your lover, will your legitimate wife accept it?


    The thematic of arranged marriage and having to forego your true love for your family interest was one of my best thematic when Game Mastering Legend of The Five Rings.
     
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  13. ashikai

    ashikai Veteran Veteran

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    I like the "choose your own" IF and only if the character you're playing is a blank/avatar character; that is they have few to no lines, or they're somewhat customizable. Otherwise I like games where the relationships are (at most) secondary to the storyline (or the friendship focused ones where you can just read between the lines and headcanon whatever you want). :p
     
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  14. kaukusaki

    kaukusaki Awesome Programmer Extraordinaire Veteran

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    I hate romance. Okay, I'm a grumpy jaded curmudgeon but I have my reasons.


    I don't understand romance and it appears shoehorned in and/or cheesy in stories.


    romance sometimes gets into a mary sue/gary stu sort of thing, the author's personal wank story I don't want to look into (glares at Meyers and James).


    though I chose friendship (I don't like it either, but it's believable), I also tolerate star crossed, forbidden and family. it's rare for my games to have romance at all (I don't understand the concept, so there's no point in putting in trite tropes), but as long as the story was enjoyable, I hadn't any complaints.
     
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  15. Matseb2611

    Matseb2611 Innovate, don't emulate Veteran

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    I was torn between two choices. Ended up going with 'Choose your own love' because it goes best with the video game medium, and that is player interaction and choices. It also means less chance for player to lose immersion since they don't have to pick romance with a character they don't like, or in fact they can choose not to have any romance at all!


    My close second choice was 'More than Friends'. I find it a lot more romantic when two people realise feelings for each other gradually and after going through trial and adversity.
     
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  16. Euphony

    Euphony Veteran Veteran

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    I chose "friendship". I prefer stories where the main characters become close friends, especially when they come from different backgrounds, classes, ideals, etc. If some romance pops up here and there, that's fine--it's only natural for some sexual tension to form in a tight-knight group--but I think it should always remain secondary to friendship. It's really easy for romance to get cheesy, so a subtle approach is best.


    To use the sitcom Community as an example, the main characters come from all walks of life but eventually end up in the same crappy situation. Their shared experiences cause them to become close friends and, since none of them have a great family life, they form a surrogate family for each other. Sexual/romantic tension does crop up, but it's usually just to drive the story along and almost never leads to anything serious. The core of the story is that friendships and familial ties can form in unlikely places, which I think is endearing without being too corny. I really enjoy that kind of story and would much rather see that in any given medium--television, film, video game, whatever--than the whole star-crossed Romeo and Juliet stuff.
     
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  17. AwesomeCool

    AwesomeCool Bratty and spoiled little sister Veteran

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    I prefer games with romance in them, but only when it is a main focus (thus done well).  Game with sidemances tend to be terribly written, paced horribly, and about as believable as  bad fanfiction (about as well written to :) ).


    I would also pick the Choose your own Innocent KAWAII royal sweethearted princess or a sizzlin Hot, mysterious and Dangerous hunk of man for the lovely ladies out there (and I also happen to fit in that role for all you singles looking for the man of your dreams out there  ;) ) mostly for that is something that can take advantage of a games strengths.  Something to give it an advantage over books and movies.


    Also, admit it, is why we are all playing games anyways, to get the hot girl of our dream.  Heck, that is why we save the world in the first place, to impress that wonderful lady over there (not to help a bunch of useless scrubs who can't even say more then two sentences in a 40 hour period and cannot even get those 2 rat tails from those lv3 noobs).  


    And what better way to do this then to add a variety of choices to the menu.


    *Calls waiter over* Yes, I would like the "it's not like I want you to order me or anything" Special please, I have a coupon right here for it.  Oh, can I also get some extra Baka with that order?  Thank You.
     
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  18. Euphony

    Euphony Veteran Veteran

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  19. watermark

    watermark Veteran Veteran

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    @Niten Ichi Ryu I read somewhere that because of the forced marriages, adultery was the way to true love during medieval times. That marrying for love is a modern invention. I guess it's hard for us to imagine what it's like to enter a forced relationship. I wonder if they view their spouse as simply a co-worker, whose job it is to wave and smile with you, dance at balls, and occassionally make the obligatory royal heir. And after you do your jobs, you are each allowed to go fool around with your real love. For me knowing my partner is with someone else is horrifying and traumatic. But this could be something our current society has ingrained in us. It would be interesting how you explore this dynamic.


    It seems most people like the choose-your-own-love route. It makes sense as this seems to be a form that no other medium can deliver.


    @AwesomeCool An innocent kawaii royal sweethearted princess? This is actually quite a difficult character to write (well).  :guffaw:
     
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  20. Niten Ichi Ryu

    Niten Ichi Ryu Grey Lords Emissary Veteran

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    Well you are relatively right when you say arranged marriages were a bit of a "job", but this was far from being also allowed to fool around. Social pressure and the stigma of adultery as condemned by the Church was strong. It was not good for a man's repute to be known as a cuckold. And making an heir was not the occasional job, it was the main purpose. And in any situation, it was always worse for the woman, due to the highly patriarchal aspect of middle age society. 


    The married noble man could father bastards with less stigma that the adulterine woman, who was usually cast out. Let's not forget that they was no such thing as divorce. Ironically the ones who would have the more chance to marry for love would be commoners, but even for them, practicality would usually dictate the choice of a spouse.
     
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