Gamasutra's sister educational site GameCareerGuide.com
has announced the results from its most recent game design challenge, which asked readers to cook up a romance-oriented game -- as well as kicking off its next, which is centered around harmless deception.
While romance games have had a pretty long history in Japan, success has eluded this genre in the U.S. Sure, some Japanese games get translated and are appreciated by niche audiences, but there hasn't been a really substantial success comparable to Konami's Tokimeki Memorial
or its more recent Love Plus
GameCareerGuide, therefore, asked its readers to come up with a romance title that could resonante with a Western audience. Here are the results:
Emily Greenquist Student, Flashpoint Academy, I <3 Mullido
I <3 Mullido abstracts the concept of love, and tackles complex themes with cute characters. The result is an appealing experience for a carefully chosen target audience.
Isaak Kraft van Ermel, Noordelijke Hogeschool Leeuwarden in the Netherlands, Hearthunters
Isaak Kraft van Ermel suggests a competitive multiplayer dating game for mobile phone owners. Notably, gameplay requires physical presence and social interaction -- a potential spark for real-world romances.
Vladimir Villanueva, Artist, The Album, Burgundy
Villanueva's The Album, Burgundy is a unique title that challenges players to balance rationality, passion, forwardness, and defensiveness in the context of a "real-time strategy romance."
You can read the winning entries, as well as five intriguing runners-up, at the results article
available on GameCareerGuide now.
...and Rick Astley
The idea behind the Rickroll phenomenon was a bit of harmless fun -- tricking someone to go to a link to the '80s pop hit Never Gonna Give You Up instead of the link they wanted to visit.
From the challenge, "Can a game be devised around the concept of tricking someone? And who will you trick? Will you trick the player, or will the player trick the other characters in the game? The field is wide open to come up with a totally original concept based around fooling or tricking someone.
Full details on how to enter the challenge
, including submission dates, are available now at GameCareerGuide.