THE GUARDIAN - Sep 25 - Mystic Messenger was released two years ago by Cheritz, a South Korean game developer. It has since been downloaded by millions of people worldwide. The game is a mix between a romance novel and Spike Jonze's 2013 movie Her, in which a man develops a relationship with a Siri-like character. The primary aim of Mystic Messenger is to pursue a romantic relationship with one of a number of characters in the game. Users talk to them via a text message. The responses are pre-scripted, but feel dynamic and sincere. The idea of simulating romantic relationships through gaming emerged in the 1980s in Japan. In the past year, there has been a bumper crop of hit dating sims, including Love and Producer, Dream Daddy and Doki Doki Literature Club.
by Oscar Schwartz
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