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The degree of sexual content varies, but may often include intercourse.
Sexually explicit dating sims may fall into the category of H Game or Eroge.
Dating sims such as Tokimeki Memorial often revolve almost entirely around relationship-building, usually featuring complex character interactions and branching dialogue trees, and often presenting the player's possible responses word-for-word as the player character would say them.
Dating sims such as Tokimeki Memorial, and some role-playing games with similar relationship based mechanics to the genre such as Persona, often give choices that have a different number of associated "mood points" which influence a player character's relationship and future conversations with a non-player character.
The term "dating sim" is also often used incorrectly in English as a generic term for romance-driven games (ren'ai games), a subject matter which is stereotypically associated with the visual novel genre.Games where the player character is female and potential objects of affection are male are known as Gx B or otome games.Homosexual relationships are also possible, as there are games with no specific gender lines ("all pairings").This can lead to confusion, as visual novels are considered a subgenre of adventure games and are not technically included in the dating sim genre.While the two genres often share a common visual presentation, dating sims are sometimes considered to be more statistically based than the "choose your own adventure" style of visual novels.