Doki Doki Literature Club is a free visual novel that presents itself as a totally normal game, where you’ll meet some cute girls at an after school club. There’s more than meets the eye to this one, though.
Four Horsemen is a game about immigrants and refugees, and also kinda sorta the apocalypse. It’s a compelling game, written from a place of deep empathy about a topic that is important to consider in our current political climate. Unfortunately it doesn’t quite come together.
It’s been a year since Gravity Falls aired its series finale, and I, one of the show’s many super-fans, miss it so much. But now, there’s a visual novel on the way that can help me relive some of the wackiness of that small, mysterious Oregon town. It’s called Reverse Falls.
Tokyo Dark is a game about a cursed mask and ritualistic murder, but under the surface, it’s also a game about hurt people hurting people. Its complex writing and unique take on a sanity meter make it easy to care about the characters trapped in its tragic, bloody world.
Hospice is a moving autobiographical game about losing someone you love.
Did you ever get one of those chain text messages? You know, the ones that say, “SeNd ThIS 2 !!!FIVE!!! peeple or els u will DIE 2NITE!!!” During my high school years, they became so pervasive that they were more annoying than scary. Horror visual novel The Letter changes all that.
Have you ever watched Jaws, saw the shark, and thought it was kinda hot? Well you’re in luck, because now you can live out your aquatic apex predator lovin’ dreams in Shark Dating Simulator XL. Be warned— it is definitely NSFW.
With its lush art and lovely music, visual novel He Beat Her sounds like an easy sell. The way it handles its subject matter, however, lacks the nuance it deserves.
Dream Daddy, a popular new dating simulator in which you date hot dads, has a reputation for being a heartwarming game. But since its release, players have started wondering if there’s something more sinister hiding beneath the original story, thanks to rumors of a “cult ending” that is allegedly hidden in the game’s…
Welcome to suburbia, where nothing exciting ever happens. Even your job as a veterinary intern isn’t thrilling, since all you do is answer phones. But one day, an adorable hamster shows up and you decide to give him a little kiss on the forehead. Except this isn’t your ordinary adorable hamster: it’s a gorgeous, naked…
Picross Makeout League tests your love of picross through puzzle-themed dates.
If the medium is the message, then AOL’s messaging software—at least for my generation—has the same sentimentality as whatever we talked about over it. That’s the pitch of Emily Is Away Too, a new visual novel that plays out in “EOL” Instant Messenger windows, away messages and personal profiles.
Glitched out texts, lush water colors and abandoned towns: Yurei Station, a visual novel that came out a few weeks ago on itch.io, uses these elements to create a horror game that lingers with you long after you’re done with it.
Twitter can be a pretty awful place. The Subtweet Game makes the worst parts of it into a romance game.
Ladykiller in a Bind is full of sex. Naughty, dirty sex. It’s a fun visual novel that let me explore BDSM and consent. For those of you feeling a little timid, the game’s new update adds a few features to keep things PG-13.
Steins;Gate is an amazingly well-written time travel adventure. It is also one of the best visual novels ever made. New adventure Steins;Gate 0 lives up to the original in nearly every possible way.
One Night Stand is a game about, well, a one night stand. In this game you wake up naked in a stranger’s bed and try to piece together how it happened. While the scenario can play out in 12 different ways, the story as a whole is a gentle look at how two people can come together, and what happens from there.
Steins;Gate 0 will finally release in North America on November 29. The visual novel will be available next month on PS4 and Vita according to a post on the PlayStation blog by localization lead, Adam Lensenmayer. The game is a sequel to Steins;Gate. You can read our review of the imported Japanese version here.
“The Prince of Play” Solon Scott is a YouTuber who plays through visual novels, mostly Japanese dating simulators. It’s his art medium. In his videos, Scott acts out characters’ voices, explains literary devices and offers sharp commentary on visual novels’ plot. He sees himself as a performer and his videos as, in…