Doki Doki Literature Club (DDLC) combines the cute romantic aesthetic of dating sims, while hiding a dark and creepy psychological horror element. By seamlessly merging these two opposite styles, DDLC has become increasingly popular among anime fans. Unfortunately, it’s hard to find more games that fill the same role of dark and cute. Thankfully, we’ve found some of the best games that give the same feeling as DDLC, for the fans that are still looking for more.
Best games for Doki Doki Literature Club fans
Some consider this to be the original Doki Doki Literature Club as it combines the a similar dating sim aesthetics with a much deeper hidden darkness. While DDLC is more upfront about its dark side, Hatoful Boyfriend is more subtle about it. That is, unless you get the secret ending. Hatoful Boyfriend also adds a level of humor as you date different kinds of pigeons.
The Zero Escape series
If you’ve ever seen a movie in the “Saw” series, then you have a good idea on how you’ll feel about Zero Escape. This series features a group of people trapped in various locations, who have to undergo horrific trials in order to escape.
Always Sometimes Monsters
While the rest of these take place in high school, Always Sometimes Monsters is a choice heavy RPG where every choice the player makes affects the outcome of the story. It is somewhat an inverted version of DDLC, as it has a dark aesthetic but hides a deep charm underneath. Fans of DDLC will like the same level of emotional investment available in this game.
One of the first games to popularize visual novels in the west, Steins;Gate has a deep and captivating story that is sure to keep your attention. The game is similar to Always Sometimes Monsters, where it heavily focuses on the choices you make, and allows for you to travel through time to affect the present in various ways.
This game was actually part of what inspired DDLC, according to lead developer Dan Salvato on Twitter. An indie horror game centered around the nihilistic nightmare that a girl has to go through.
The Danganronpa series
An anime-style high school horror with a dating sim element to it; Danganronpa is the ideal series to try for anyone who has played DDLC. The series follows a class of students who are trapped together by their teacher, and their only escape is to kill another classmate without getting caught.
Anime games like Doki Doki Literature Club can be really compelling with their use of visuals and aesthetic. Along with these games, you can also check out the best anime to look forward to this season, in order to get some closure from playing DDLC.