Dating sims are the most hilarious April Fools' game genre
April 06, 20191 min read
My favorite kind of April Fools’ joke is where developers create mock-ups for products so ridiculous they’ll probably never exist. It's even better when they actually release that product and it ends up being great! In the video game industry, these jokes often take the form of spin-offs from existing IPs in different genres. And I see one particular genre chosen for faux (and real!) April Fools’ spin-offs more often than most -- dating simulators. Or at least visual novels flavored like dating simulators if you want to nitpick the gameplay differences, but they’re used as common April Fools’ jokes all the same.
While this trend could possibly have originated as a derogatory satire of early dating sims, this genre has slowly detached from its stigma over time. Heck, even indie dating sim devs like Boyfriend Dungeon's Kitfox Games willingly joined this year’s shenanigans with a faux Enter the Gungeon crossover. I don’t believe it’s fair or accurate to say dating sims are a common subject of April Fools’ jokes solely to mock them, especially not these days. Rather, they are one of the most feasible and effective mediums for delivering a hilarious prank, especially when going as far as to make it actually playable.