Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Rose Destiny Dating Sim

Author: Chickslovegames
Availability: Free, Online/browser
Format: Dating Sim
Genre: Fantasy
Rating: Teen
My Scores: (Writing: 1, Art: 1, Gameplay: 1) out of 5

In Rose Destiny Dating Sim, you, your father, and your brother have all moved to a new kingdom. Your father wants you to find a boyfriend, preferably in time for the ball.


Notice how I didn't use any names in that summary. The dialog in the game doesn't make it very clear who's who and what's going on. Generally, you can figure out the boys' names by checking the stats sheet immediately after talking to one of them, but this brings up a hilarious inconsistency with the brother; throughout the game, your brother is referred to as Adrian, but the stats sheet lists him as Alex. This makes me think of a scene from a Cheech and Chong movie: "Dude, you never told me your name was Alex!" As for our "shy" but totally-willing-to-break-into-people's-houses-and-start-bossing-them-around protagonist, I think her name is supposed to be Rose, but I wouldn't bet my life on it.

As you can guess, I don't much care for the writing, but there are a couple places where I must give credit. One thing that impressed me is that one character has an attempted female-on-male rape in his backstory, and it is treated as something to be taken seriously. Often in fiction, and real life, the concept of women sexually attacking men is either not addressed, downplayed, or laughed off. We assume that women are too weak, or that men only respond when they want to, and neither of these assumptions are true; but because of them, a serious crime will often go unreported or unbelieved. As women, I think it's time we took responsibility and acknowledged the heinous things we are capable of.

Soap boxing aside, there was one other interesting bit that warrants half a point: The fact that Rose's father wants her to find a boyfriend. This is unusual, as parents generally either don't want their children dating (as the game mentions), or they want their children married off (mainly for status and/or money). Why this obsession with Rose finding a boyfriend as opposed to a husband, then? What does he have to gain? This would be very interesting if I didn't think it was merely an excuse for the dating sim setup, but if the author ever wants to do some serious retooling, she has the material for an intriguing story.

The art here is harsh, and also a bit confusing. The first time I played this game, I didn't see the "leave" option in the corner and thus couldn't figure out how to exit the house. Also, the intro to the game is hard on the eye and thus difficult to read.

This game is broken. Choosing to work takes away hp more than once (after you click the button, and after it tells you how much you earned), and choosing to date someone who is not yet datable also results in a glitch. Also, it is possible (and easy) to end the day with -10 hp.

This game also commits the sin of having two nearly identical responses to pick from, one of which is wrong. Furthermore, the game won't tell you why it's wrong. Often, it feels like the author has written a script, and the point of the game is to guess what my exact lines are.

One more issue I have is with the lesbian in the market place. Some games have gay options; others don't, and that's fine. But why have a lesbian character, build up how much she's madly in love with you, give her Talk and Date buttons, and then have it come out that she's not actually an available character? Friends, when it comes to things like sex scenes and gay options, let us remember the words of Yoda: "Do or Do Not, there is no Tease."

In short, I found this game difficult to play and enjoy. In many ways, it reminded me of Dating Sim Academy, and has some of the same flaws. Still, as much as I hate both of them, I'm certain that every game has its audience. As long as there are redeeming qualities in a piece, there will be someone who can appreciate them; and when a piece has no such qualities, there will be someone who can enjoy it ironically. Alas, that someone is not me, but maybe it can be you. Feel free to say what you think.


  1. Yeah, I'm going to be honest- I found the game to be crap. I played it a while ago for a laugh and I got one. I actually discovered a glitch- I don't remember what I did- but I was able to gain all the extra HP I wanted without having money stolen from me from the father.

    The father character overall just creeped me out. "Get a boyfriend before the ball despite the fact that we moved here a few minutes ago. Oh, and I'm stealing money as you sleep as 'rent'." (I believe that's what he did).

  2. As a male survivor of a female rapist (drugged drink), I appreciate your comments on the subject.

    Far too often, both men and women are all too willing to laugh it up and ensure they put male survivors of female rapists in their place.

    So, thank you for taking it seriously and treating us with compassion.

  3. James -

    Yikes. I'm very sorry you had that experience, and hope you're doing ok. I'm also glad you're able to step forward about it. Frankly, *not* taking it seriously is a detrimental insult to both men and women, and I hope our outlook as a society changes very soon.

    Stay strong, Brother!