Is there a better time to compile the best dating sim games in 2023 than now? After all, Valentines Day and the “month of love” are just around the corner in a few weeks. You don’t need to be in a relationship to enjoy playing dating sim games, and neither do you need to be a lovey-dovey person to fit in. Honestly, some of the dating sim games we’ll see are such quality-of-life games, anyone should enjoy playing them in general.
Because human relationships are so complex, the best dating sim games will utilize these intricacies to their advantage. They’ll immerse you into the lives of each character, so much so that every decision you make feels personal. Your correspondent should also behave in the most humane ways possible, factoring in partners who truly feel special and those who break your heart.
Curious to know which five of the best dating sim games in 2023 made the cut? Be sure to stick around till the end to find out.
5. Love Island
Love Island, the TV show, has been such a show-stopper, I can imagine folks making it their mission to watch every single episode. But that’s just it. All you do is watch them, sometimes wishing you could make the cast say yes or behave in a certain way. Luckily, there’s a game built just for that purpose, to give you the freedom to control the outcome of events.
Love Island, the game, is an interactive dating sim where you’re whisked off to a remote island to find love. Of course, you can choose to be a player and just have fun across the game’s over 100 episodes split into three unique seasons.
What’s great about Love Island is the freedom of choice you have. Want your character to look a certain way? There’s a full closet at your disposal to play around with. However you’d like your story to unfold, the game gives you plenty of choices and scenarios to find love. And once you do, you’re free to start all over again with a new character and a new partner.
4. Summertime Saga
Summertime Saga is similar to Love Island. They are both visual novels with non-linear story progression. However, Summertime Saga is a pretty popular entry with millions of online players from all around the world.
In-game, you have the freedom of choice to cultivate your plotline how you see fit. There are three main plots throughout the entire playthrough, with constant updates every now and then. Each one features different romantic scenarios and even sexual intercourse.
But it’s not all roses and rainbows. The game cleverly inserts obstacles via its many possibilities. Say you have a conflict you’ll need to resolve, just like in normal life. As a result, Summertime Saga packs potentially endless hours of gameplay, making it a great contender to fill in your spare time.
3. Dream Daddy
Dream Daddy is like a game that never ceases to amaze me. It’s packed with currently trending topics, which are pretty great for a sim game. So, the main character is a daddy, of course. He is a single father raising his daughter, Amanda in a new, quaint little town.
But thank the heavens for the plenty of other single fathers he meets who also happen to be having a difficult time going out on dates. So, there you are, meeting quite unique characters, learning about their hobbies and their passions, and hoping to score a date with them. In time, you land seven dates with interesting locals, like an English teacher and a fisherman.
Of course, the dates don’t go completely as planned. Mini-games pop up in the form of some unusual interruptions. Plus, you’ll need to make some hard and fast decisions to proceed. All in all, Dream Daddy packs lots of potential for replayability, romantic adventures, and plentiful fun to go around.
If Dream Daddy isn’t quite your cup of tea, you can always check out LongStory. It’s a game packed with plenty of social/love and romantic possibilities that, in turn, stack up to form a long, lovable story.
Taking on the role of a middle school student, players are free to select their preferred gender, then proceed to indulge in the many intriguing scenarios you can imagine happening in middle school. Your choices determine the outcome of the story. Plus, there are quite a few challenging scenarios that help keep you engaged.
Even courtship. In the real world, courtship isn’t exactly low effort. So, in the same way, LongStory demands you put your best foot forward. But if you’d prefer to not pursue anyone, that too can work. You can always stick to friendships littered with plenty of drama to keep you fully immersed.
1. Doki Doki Literature Club
Doki Doki Literature Club starts off completely harmless. I mean, what could possibly go wrong when you’re a member of the literature club, courting three different girls from the club every other day? Maybe one of the girls finds out and isn’t too happy you’ve been three-timing them this whole time?
I won’t get into the nitty-gritty to avoid giving any spoilers, but let’s just say the story takes a completely wild turn that’s nothing you’d have imagined. And that’s exactly why it’s a game worth checking out. Besides the game being marketed as a psychological horror experience, there really is no way of finding out what you’re in for, which is some really serious sinister twists and turns.
For the first half of the game, the game checks all the boxes of a lovey-dovey, rose-colored dating sim game. However, if you want to take a break from all the cutesy mush out there, perhaps to take a dark grim turn in the middle of a game, then Doki Doki Literature Club is the way to go.
So, what’s your take? Do you agree with our five best dating sim games in 2023? Are there more games we should know about? Let us know down in the comments or over on our socials here.