Indonesian development studio GameChanger and publisher Neon Doctrine announced that they will be working together on My Lovely Wife. The successor to the Dating Sim and Management Sim genre mix My Lovely Daughter will be released on PC and Nintendo Switch, with a release date yet to be revealed.
The game was already announced at Gamescom 2020, but now we were able to play My Lovely Wife’s new gameplay demo. Our experience with this demo confirmed our impression that GameChanger Studio indeed doesn’t want to “game-change” this sequel but instead wants to further develop a proven concept. That doesn’t have to mean anything bad per se if improvements are noticeable in the right places.
The game’s title already gives it away: This time the protagonist of the game (who is now someone else) does not lose his daughter, but his wife. To get them back, a certain ritual is necessary, for which the so-called Carnal Essence is required. With the help of magical abilities, Jake creates various succubi, which in turn have to be sacrificed for this essence.
The Succubi have different abilities and an affection value, which can be increased through activities in the city or conversations. The more affection, the more Carnal Essence we end up getting. To do this, we send our “substitute wives” to work or other activities on a city map, who then carry them out automatically. This is the starting point for a very unique game principle that entangles management, dating sim, visual novel and idle gaming in an interesting way.
My Lovely Wife inherits the morbid basic idea, the game principle and the idiosyncratic graphic style (inspired by gothic horror) from its predecessor – so what’s new to report? When we played the demo, we felt right at home and were able to spot some detailed improvements in the gameplay and the general user experience. The graphics have also received some improvements: It now looks more detailed and has a higher resolution. We also like the writing better and in some passages, it even reaches the quality of good visual novels. Here, Lasheli Dwitri’s engagement (formerly Toge Productions) as a narrative designer has certainly paid off.
GameChanger Studio says they want to make a game about toxic relationships. That sounds like an exciting yet also very delicate idea and we hope that the good approaches we say in the demo will not get lost in the currently rather sluggish and repetitive gameplay. That would be wasted potential! After all, the 42 (!) possible endings give hope for a widely branching story in which our decisions should play an important role.
As it stands now, My Lovely Wife will be an improved version of My Lovely Daughter rather than an entirely new game. Thanks to revamped graphics and a stronger focus on the story, this could even work. Fans of the predecessor will definitely be served and thanks to the better accessibility, new players could also be reached. We are curious to see how good the finished game will be in the end.