Cheating in a dating sim?

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briannavon
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Cheating in a dating sim?

#1 Post by briannavon » Fri May 25, 2012 12:50 pm

Not for my current game, but for a game in the very far away future, I would like to add two things to things to the game:

1.Cheat Codes

2. The abilty to cheat on your boyfriend (don't worry, I don't like that in real life, just for the game :lol: )

So, tell me how you feel about both of these in a dating sim.
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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#2 Post by Argeus_the_Paladin » Fri May 25, 2012 12:58 pm

I am having trouble imagining how cheat code can work in a visual novel at all. It is for all intents and purposes a work of interactive fiction, which is to say, there's not so much "winning" and "losing" as there are different endings to a story depending on which path you choose. It's not like, say, Ctrl+X in M&B Warband to get to max level and start taking castles and cities in your lonesome. The only way cheat code can work is if you've missed a particular "flag" and wish to turn it on. And even then, it's a very "meta" thing and not very intuitive to a player: You need to be aware that said flag exists in the first place, aware that you have missed it, and aware that missing it means LOL BAD END.

Even for dating sims, while there are tangible stats and money, do keep in mind that such games are much less about grinding as most other games with RPG elements. That makes cheat codes much more pointless compared to other RPs.

Also, the cheating plot has been used at least once - look no further than School Days and the Nice-freaking-Boat. Whether that is intended to be a satire of premarital sex and infidelity is entirely up to one's interpretation. :wink:
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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#3 Post by Blane Doyle » Fri May 25, 2012 1:59 pm

^ Magical Diary: Horse Hall has a cheat function to get your stats up to whatever you wish. Though the devs warn that it could mess up your game and though it is exploitable they do not recommend it.

But a stat raising sim is a bit different from a simple dating sim.

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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#4 Post by Zylinder » Fri May 25, 2012 2:47 pm

Well, if you do implement No.2, you'll want to make sure it doesn't happen accidentally. As in, one moment you're being friendly to a cute guy and the next thing you know a flag switches on in the background and suddenly your boyfriend is dumping you for cheating on him when you really just meant to get friend status with said cute guy.

Otherwise, I don't see why not. People who don't like the cheating can simply choose not to do it. Again, people should know exactly that cheating is happening. Perhaps in the form of the 3rd guy going "What we're doing is wrong", etc.

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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#5 Post by briannavon » Fri May 25, 2012 2:52 pm

Zylinder wrote:Well, if you do implement No.2, you'll want to make sure it doesn't happen accidentally. As in, one moment you're being friendly to a cute guy and the next thing you know a flag switches on in the background and suddenly your boyfriend is dumping you for cheating on him when you really just meant to get friend status with said cute guy.

Otherwise, I don't see why not. People who don't like the cheating can simply choose not to do it. Again, people should know exactly that cheating is happening. Perhaps in the form of the 3rd guy going "What we're doing is wrong", etc.
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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#6 Post by Greeny » Fri May 25, 2012 5:12 pm

You know, maybe that sends the wrong message to people. Maybe we don't want to portray cheating as a thing that we'd like in society. Just maybe.

(I am talking, of course, about no. 1)
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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#7 Post by KimiYoriBaka » Fri May 25, 2012 5:39 pm

cheat codes is something that can be really fun if you can come up with ways to implement them. I've always been a fan of the idea that games should be enjoyably in whatever way the player can think of (with the sole exception being button-mashing in fighting games, just cause it damages the controller and doesn't actually equate to playing). The thing to consider is more what cheats would be fun to have.

on the subject of cheating on people in dating sims, the fact that you would ask makes it seem like you haven't played many of the older dating sims. As far as I know, the precedent is that cheating is only bad if the game doesn't give enough time to cover both routes.

some things I've been considering for my own dating sim
1. having the heroines find it question the player for trying to be too nice to them after already going out with someone else.

2. having the heroines do evil things to the player if the player tries having an actual date with multiple of them

3. having the player get arrested for too much stalking...:)

seriously, if it sounds like fun, do it.

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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#8 Post by gekiganwing » Fri May 25, 2012 6:25 pm

Regarding cheat codes: they're usually present in "sim date" games. If you're unfamiliar with these stat-driven Flash games, then try Pacthesis' games at http://pacthesis.deviantart.com/gallery/27555536 . There are more on sites such as Newgrounds, but I recommend the ones written by Pacthesis because they have decent writing, characterization, and sometimes a fair amount of plot. ...Anyway, in a decent sim date game, the player will be given at least one opportunity to enter a secret password. It will increase stats and sometimes bonus content.

It's your decision if you want the player to win easily. You can let the player choose difficulty (from challenging simulation to simple visual novel). Flowerthief did this with the freeware game Heartache 101. You can let the player bypass puzzles. You can implement a "New Game Plus" (named after a feature in Chrono Trigger) mode if you want, which lets the player start from the beginning with excellent stats, items, etc.

There are strategies for succeeding with the Tokimeki Memorial games. After browsing GameFAQs pages, I see they have a couple trivial cheats, but nothing game-breaking. I didn't search much, but I couldn't find any outright cheats for LovePlus, Pia Carrot 1, or Otometeki.
KimiYoriBaka wrote: some things I've been considering for my own dating sim
1. having the heroines find it question the player for trying to be too nice to them after already going out with someone else.

2. having the heroines do evil things to the player if the player tries having an actual date with multiple of them

3. having the player get arrested for too much stalking...:)
These are all rather good ideas, and they could all work in romance games. If you like these concepts, use them. The first idea that KimiYoriBaka suggested is somewhat relevant in Persona 4, though the game doesn't exactly emphasize simulation. The second idea is similar to the "bomb" system in the Tokimemo games. (Read the FAQs if you're unfamiliar. It's basically a measure of an NPC's anger at being ignored. In the Girls Side games, the main character can also become a rival of her fellow girls.)

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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#9 Post by briannavon » Sat May 26, 2012 12:03 pm

I could still use more people's thoughts, but I kinda get what people think I should do.
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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#10 Post by bellice » Sat May 26, 2012 6:38 pm

1. Cheatcodes are absolutely fine, especially in stat-raising games. It always annoys me when I have to raise my stats all over again just to get a different ending.

2. Why not? I think it's interesting when the protagonist is in a relationship already and then has to decide whether or not that new person is worth it. It's also interesting to have the LI in an existing relationship. These things just make it a) more realistic and b) also more emotionally involving because you're bound to feel bad for the person being cheated on.

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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#11 Post by Vegeluxia » Thu May 31, 2012 11:50 pm

As I just said somewhere else~ XD
Vegeluxia wrote:…at some point I think I’d love to see a dating sim that had a few endings worthy of Cheaters. *bricked* That’ll teach me to be indecisive.

As for cheat codes… only if they can be obtained after beating the game first. Like, after you beat it, it unlocks something on a second play through that you can examine and gives you a code. Or you’re just given a code at the end of the game, either way. I’d personally prefer to find it on my own if I was going to use it.

Honestly, I don’t really care for cheat codes though. They make me feel less accomplished.

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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#12 Post by Taleweaver » Fri Jun 01, 2012 8:27 am

mikey's Ori, Ochi, Onoe had an interesting cheat code. It opened up a full Morse alphabet. And no, you didn't need it to solve the game - just to discover a hidden message...
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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#13 Post by Kingv » Fri Jun 01, 2012 1:00 pm

I'm making a stat based sim game right now. I've already implemented a few cheat codes. Most of them are to max out your inventory, boost stats, unlock characters and get gallery items like extra CGs. I like it when cheat codes can be obtained throughout the game as well as depending on what type of ending you get. That way you feel a bit of accomplishment while playing.

As far as cheating on a significant other goes, I'm not a fan of it IRL but I think it's a fun element to play around with in games. If the MC is going around chatting up everyone and going on dates then it's only a matter of time before those dateable characters come into conflict with each other. I have Rival Endings in place for every guy in my game endings. Basically some guys don't get along that great with each other. So when you make plans to spend the end game event with two guys that are rivals then only meet up with one of them, the guy you snub shows up and calls the MC out. Some characters are nice about it while others are downright mean. If anything it makes you more contentious of the choices you make.

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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#14 Post by Cake » Fri Jun 01, 2012 1:08 pm

I think cheat codes could be a nice little "extra" to have. Like if there's a CG gallery, it could be complete without having to actually go through all of the paths to do them, or there could be cheats to highlight the best options to get him to like you. (Sort of like, turning on some sort of indicator or greying out poor choices.) Not a bad idea, and I think it could be done well if you strategize about the game mechanics of a VN and how one could take shortcuts.

As for cheating, yes definitely! I think it adds a great twist of realism and flexibility for your character to be able to stray from their initial path. My idea on it is, "why not?". It happens in real life, and personally I'm a big fan of "real" love stories versus ones that are fantasy-driven or happen rarely in real life. I'm a cynic like that. :P

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Re: Cheating in a dating sim?

#15 Post by Uruki-chan » Sun Jul 01, 2012 8:19 am

About cheating codes:
I think if the game is a stat riser it would be quiet nice to have cheats if raising the stats is really hard. But in a normal VN you should be okay without cheats.

About cheating:
Yeah, why not? I mean in RL it's the same. Let's say you're in a relationship, but someone else is capturing your heart. The question is: Are you going to break up with your current partner or stay with him? :) It's not said, that cheating is okay, but it would give a game a very realistic aspect. Also: If the characters are lovely it would break your heart to leave them... ^^ (e. g. in Storm Lover the characters are so superb, that you can't just break their hearts by leaving them ;))
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