It seems that women in Japan have figured out how to take the escape many women get from things like romance novels to the next level. Young women throughout the country are taking to simulated romance gaming apps that deliver “the perfect” boyfriend directly to your phone.
Okay, so he may not actually be real, but he provides what a lot of women in Japan feel they are lacking in real life relationships. CNN reports about the romance gaming craze millions of Japanese women have taken solice in in recent years. Ayumi Saito downloaded one of these romance apps after breaking up with her boyfriend at the age of 22. Now, almost 10 years later she explains the fulfillment the apps give her that she was not able to find in the dating world. She says, “I felt lonely. Japanese men are shy and not good at flattering women. But girls want to hear 'I love you'.”
She also experienced excitement while playing a female detective game that mixes romance with mystery. She adds of her virtual boyfriend, “When I was tired at the end of the day, before going to sleep, I was so relieved to hear his sweet and gentle words.”
Yuirka, age 26, also uses the apps but feels it is just an escape and understands there is no substitute for the real thing. She says, “These romance games make me feel I want to be in love with someone. The boys in these games have something lacking in the real life boys -- they are so sweet.” She adds, “I know that it is a game. A boyfriend in a romance game cannot be a substitute for a real boyfriend.”
Nanako Higashi, business woman and leading creator of female romance simulation apps, believes she is creating a safe service for women who need an escape from real life romance. She also recognizes that many women in her country are opting to live alone and her games provide something they may feel they are lacking. She says, “It is true some of our users are probably scared to be in love in real life and enjoy the virtual romance. I think our desire to love and be loved by someone is universal. We'll continue to provide a good service for the women who want such a feeling around the world.”
What do you think about the rise of romance gaming in Japan?
Would you ever consider trying out a romance gaming app?