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Review: Choice Of Romance

The pretty little App icon is a rose.

Choice of Games has already charmed us with dragon and naval life--asking us to take on roles in multiple choice games that are reminiscent of choose your own adventure books.

They've also been inclusive, in terms of whom your character can pursue in the romance department. As they are text-based, the limits on their resources are how many characters they can create. In Choice of the Dragon, you could at one point pursue a male or female dragon, and you had the opportunity to choose your own sex rather early. Same goes with Choice of Broadsides. In both, the action lay in other places, however. Romance was more of an aside. Choice of Romance makes it clear that such is not the case.

No, in this game you start off playing a noble from a family who may have some small amount of status, but has not much else of which to boast. As the eldest child, you are given an opportunity to attend the court for a season, to establish a relationship. The expectation is that you will afford your family a future of wealth and security, supporting your sibling and parents.

Playing as a male who fancied males, a few things caught my eye. First, I was given a decent amount of suitors: three. They ranged from that impetuous youth who is passionate, if not fortunate, to the elderly rich guy seeking a suitable young thing for his household. Not wishing to be the househusband, of my two plays, I skipped the latter. Second, there was an early mention of another same-sex pairing during my own ball--it was subtle, but it made me smile and helped me realize the world would not treat my sexuality any different.

So far I've had two different plays, and have a few more planned. Given the options in both your sex and then whom you may pursue, there exists a bit of play for how to go about things, and there seemed to be many different paths to reach some of my suitors. As usual, stats are existent, and you can determine how good you are at magic, being charming, or subtly getting what you want.

There is plenty of court intrigue, and a good amount of exposition in a world that has Death and Life mages, and a slight Spanish tint to it. If you have a good half an hour or so, feel free to give it a try for free with your browser or the Android app. It is also available in the iPhone app store for $1.99 (if you read the comments on the post about the game being released, they explain further how they believed the market might support it and are trying to get revenue).

One last bit, the game is the first that blatantly states there will be a continuation. How that will be handled brings all sorts of ideas to mind, but it's also interesting to see how Choice of Games is trying new formulas.


limeade said:

I love the people over at Choice of Games. They really do think about what their products are and how they can serve the majority of the audiences out there, without terrible real-world prejudices and social hampering. As in, you do not have to worry about developers/the gaming industry injecting their own homophobia and sexism into their games, be it to sell units or due to inherent social trend, and I feel that it makes for a much richer experience for everyone. After all, do we really need to be reminded of real world commentary on social issues in all of our games? No thanks. :)

I beta tested Choice of the Vampire, a game coming out soon, and I think it is just as brilliant as Choice of Romance. Also an on-going series as well.

Branovices said:

I basically played it as a male Anne Boleyn.

Abe said:

I fell in love with the king. If only it was real.

And girls who like girls who like rumble packs!

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