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The term "dating sim" is also often used incorrectly in English as a generic term for romance-driven games (ren'ai games), a subject matter which is stereotypically associated with the visual novel genre.
This can lead to confusion, as visual novels are considered a subgenre of adventure games and are not technically included in the dating sim genre.
Cara Maine has just moved to the small and cozy town of Willow Creek, where she's anxious to branch out on her own for the first time.
With the help of her bosses, her friends, and the player, she might just start something amazing.
There are five main arcs with twenty different endings: a choice-based adventure with basic mini-game demonstrations.
For example, I've produced several visual novels and dating sims.
Some have been quite successful even though I have not played many Japanese games.
Back in 2011 game developer Manga Gamer released a visual novel called Go! Nippon – My First Trip to Japan, where you play a young American who travels to Japan to meet his two beautiful Japanese pen pals. Nippon was successful and received high ratings on Steam.
Of course, they had to make changes so it’s not a total ripoff, so they changed the date-able ladies from Japanese to North Korean. The two girls, Jeong and Eunji, are a military police officer and intelligence officer.
These terms are quite similar but carry distinct differences, as above, and there are times when they are incorrectly substituted for one another (dating sims are often referred to incorrectly as visual novels).