Extra Punctuation: Why No Couples in Games?


New member
Dec 13, 2007
But anyway, back to the whole romance topic theres 3 main problems here:

1. Relationships require time to cultivate, and video games leave very little time for it because it's to busy throwing you into the gameplay.
* But like Yahtzee said, theres ways to put it in with the action, like a couple that fights side by side, helping each other, giving them a chance to talk, and show their actual chemistry together. This would make the player care about them & understand their characters.

2. Happy couples have no real conflict and that's not interesting. Therefore having all the jealousy/envy/fighting for affection, the things before a relationship starts is more interesting (presumably), I think established relationships can be interesting because it can make us care.

3. Believable romance is incredibly difficult to write and the games industry, at least, still has the excuse of, alot of the time, not been written by professional writers.. or having the writers content get cut up to shreds by game designers before it gets put in game, which can happen when there's time constraints involved.


New member
Jan 27, 2013
I do feel that there's a great example in the Mass Effect series.

It starts off a bit oddly - one alien crewman essentially develops a fangirl crush on the protagonist. But that can actually unfold into a healthy, mutually-supportive relationship. It's especially nice that they get to go into battle together, which reinforces the whole partnership element.

It's probably the least sexual of the lot, given that she constantly wears an opaque helmet that she only removes off-camera. But the characters make up for it with their interactions, ranging from suggestive banter in front of squadmates, to knowingly-optimistic planning for a future they know will probably never come. It actually got me all nostalgic for the earlier days of my own relationship.

That all came to a head in the ending of ME3, in which the protagonist has to go sacrifice himself to save all organic life and stuff. The goodbye scene, with its heartrending voice acting, moved me to the brink of a single manly tear.
It even swayed me to pick the only ending that -didn't- unambiguously kill the protagonist, just to keep alive the possibility of their having a happy, peaceful future together.

BioWare made me care so much about these two characters' future together that
wiping out an entire robotic civilisation off-camera seemed a small price to pay. And that, I feel, excuses all manner of bugs and shitty mechanics.