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Creator / Lovestruck

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Lovestruck: Choose Your Romance was a portal app for the Visual Novel Romance Games produced by Voltage Entertainment USA, Inc, available for iOS and Android devices. It debuted in March of 2017, and upon its launch the romance games previously released as individual pay-to-play apps under Voltage USA's AmeMix banner were transitioned into the Lovestruck library.

Stories were released serially in twelve-episode seasons which were updated on a weekly basis, three episodes at a time. Each love interest under a given title has their own storyline, or "route". One character's next season would rotate in as another character's previous season ended; the app typically had between six to nine routes updating at a time. New titles typically premiered as a single-season pilot featuring two love interests, followed by a player survey to determine whether or not the title would be picked up to series. Special seasonally-themed one-shot stories were also published throughout the year, such as for Halloween, Pride Month, and April Fool's Day.

Lovestruck was the Western counterpart to Voltage Inc's Love 365: Find Your Story, which serves the same purpose for the company's Japanese romance game titles and is also available in an English-language version.

In December 2021, with Voltage Inc's USA division being shut down, it was announced that Lovestruck would be shutting down on March 31, 2022, with the app being removed from app stores on January 24, 2022.

Titles available through Lovestruck:

Compare Pixelberry Studios' Choices: Stories You Play.

Tropes applicable to the app as a whole or common to its titles:

  • Added Alliterative Appeal: It's common for character dialogue tags to use a descriptive placeholder before the character's name is revealed. Many of these placeholders are alliterative.
  • Allegedly Free Game: Lovestruck operates on two currencies: tickets which allow you to progress to the next chapter of a story, and hearts which can be spent to unlock extra scenes or special stories. Tickets refresh gradually over time and simply require patience; hearts can be earned via login bonuses or special offers such as the monthly fanart contest, but in practice it's difficult to accumulate enough of them to access much of the special content without microtransactions.
  • Barbie Doll Anatomy: Most of the series' art styles depict the male characters without nipples.
  • The Body Parts That Must Not Be Named: There's plenty of sex scenes, but genitalia are never mentioned, presumably due to app store content restrictions.
  • But Thou Must!: Dialogue choices appear several times per episode, but have little to no impact on the overall direction of the story, branching off only briefly into one of three variations before merging back into a single storyline. As a result, any time a dialogue point presents more than one possible course of action, it doesn't matter what you choose since the characters will end up on the same path regardless.
  • Cliffhanger: The serial format of Lovestruck stories results in a lot of episode breaks and season endings in which the characters face some kind of immediate peril or get some kind of shocking bombshell dropped on them right before the "To Be Continued" card, the better to keep the reader following the story to see what happens next.
  • Crossover:
    • Astoria: Fate's Kiss crosses with Gangsters in Love in the stories "Gangsters in Astoria" and "LA: Fate's Kiss".
    • Castaway! Love's Adventure crosses with Gangsters in Love in "Castaways in Love" and "Gangster! Love's Adventure".
    • For Pride month 2017, the Lovestruck app put together a crossover series featuring the queer love interests in each of the stories playable through the app, plus Queen's Gambit. The story revolves around a magical crown originating in the Love & Legends universe being passed around between the various love interests as they pass by one another and interact with their girlfriends. Weirdly, because Astoria has two queer love interests, the protagonist shows up as the girlfriend to both, as though she's engaging in some very compartmentalised polyamory.
    • For Halloween 2017, Lovestruck released two special stories — one focused on male love interests, and one focused on female ones — where a Lovestruck fan is sucked into the app and journeys through the various game worlds, accompanied by two love interests from different games.
    • For Pride month 2018, a special was released about the Astoria heroine going to a Pride parade and meeting the female love interests from various series. In-universe, it's written by May Chan, Astoria supporting character and the heroine's best friend.
    • The Lovestruck short 3 Tattoos features supporting characters from various series meeting in a tattoo shop and trading stories. There's the shop owner, Rahim Nassar, from Havenfall is for Lovers and Villainous Nights; Stella, adopted daughter of Aurora and the heroine from Gangsters in Love; Hikari, half-sister of JD from Havenfall is for Lovers (accompanied by Spike the hellhound from the same series); and Robin from Villainous Nights.
    • For Pride month 2019, a special was released about the queer romance options (and some queer supporting characters from various series) going on a Pride month cruise sponsored by ChatSphere from Villainous Nights.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: The older titles which were originally published as standalone apps differ noticeably from the titles developed as Lovestruck originals: the seasons are longer, with Multiple Endings and post-season epilogues, as well as numerous side stories. Gangsters in Love and To Love & Protect shift to the Lovestuck standard twelve-episode format in their later seasons, which were released after the merge.
  • Fictional Counterpart: The settings of Havenfall Is For Lovers and Villainous Nights feature a streaming service called Crispyflix+, an obvious reference to Crunchyroll and Netflix.
  • Foil: The two love interests of a pilot series will often contrast each other in some way, such as with one being more outgoing and the other more withdrawn.
    • Starship Promise: Orion is more strict and business-like and dresses in blue, while Jaxon is easygoing and dresses in red.
    • Havenfall Is For Lovers: Mackenzie is a werewolf and Diego a vampire, two classic monsters that are often pitted against each other in media.
    • Villainous Nights: Duke is aloof, more serious, and has a canine theme, while Andi is playful, more readily affectionate, and has a cat theme.
    • Sweet Enchantments: Lucien is more distant and cool, and Runa more hotheaded and confrontational. They also have a slight water/fire association, respectively.
    • Reigning Passions: Amara is a law-abiding knight of Summer themed with warm tones of gold and brown; Sevastian is a rebellious prince of Winter themed in crisp black, white, and silver.
  • For Halloween, I Am Going as Myself: One set of unlockable images from Halloween shows various love interests dressed up for the holiday, with Mackenzie from Havenfall is for Lovers having simply changed into her werewolf form.
  • Fully-Clothed Nudity: Due to content restrictions on app stores, Lovestruck is limited in how much nudity it can show. Therefore in any scene where the characters are supposed to be naked, their sprites will depict them as being in their underwear.
  • Gay Option:
    • All Lovestruck titles have at least one female love interest, and many of them feature two. Speakeasy Tonight and To Love & Protect did not have gay options in their original format, but a female love interest route was added to each title when they were transitioned into Lovestruck. Additionally, Astoria: Fate's Kiss, Havenfall Is For Lovers, Reigning Passions, and Ever After Academy have non-binary love interest options.
    • In June of 2020, Ever After Academy became the first Lovestruck title to feature a gay male Player Character option.
  • Hello, [Insert Name Here]: The protagonist of each game is named by the player.
  • Lingerie Scene: If a female character is a heroine or love interest, she will be shown in her underwear at some point.
  • Luminescent Blush: The protagonist and love interests will each have a sprite with a blushing expression.
  • Mascot: The main Lovestruck mascot is Konbowwow, an adorable cartoon dog. Comet, the Ridiculously Cute Team Pet from Starship Promise, also occasionally serves mascot duty for Lovestruck as a whole.
  • Microtransactions: Although it is possible to play without paying, microtransactions are by far the most reliable means of obtaining enough hearts to access special scenes and side stories.
  • Multiple Endings: The older titles originally released as standalone apps feature multiple endings determined by the player's choices throughout the season. The multiple ending structure was discontinued in new titles beginning with Love & Legends, as well as the later Lovestruck-original seasons of the older titles; the app's serial format means that each season is less of a self-contained story with a defined ending and more of An Arc within a longer ongoing story.
  • Painting the Medium: Parentheses are used to denote the narrating character's thoughts.
  • Perspective Flip: A common theme for side stories is "Their POV," retelling part of the route or related events from the love interest's perspective.
  • Romance Ensues: Some titles have an initial plot device forcing the heroine to spend time with her love interest, which leads to romance.
    • To Love & Protect: The love interest is assigned as her bodyguard.
    • Astoria: Fate's Kiss: The heroine takes on her love interest's case, which naturally leads to them spending a lot of time together.
    • Gangsters in Love: The heroine must select one of the gang members to watch over her.
    • Love & Legends: The heroine must select one of the retainers (or Lord Reiner himself) to watch over her.
    • Sweet Enchantments: The love interest breaks The Masquerade in front of the heroine, so magical law requires they be bound together.
    • Villainous Nights: The love interest is the one the heroine finds committing a crime in Optimus after hours and so feels obligated to bring her into the Syndicate and have her spy on Optimus while protecting her.
  • Shirtless Scene: If a male character is a love interest, he will be shown shirtless at some point.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Many female love interests are 5'8" or taller.
  • Super-Deformed: Occasionally there are images, unlockable through weekend challenges, depicting various love interests hanging out in chibi form. Some of the images unlockable through the daily spin also depict love interests as chibis.
  • Tonight, Someone Kisses: CGs from upcoming episodes are previewed on a schedule banner two to three days before the episodes in question are released. In the first season or two of a route when the romance is still in the buildup stage, this means that the preview banner invariably spoils the first kiss of the route... although if the characters aren't shown actually locking lips, it's just as likely to turn out to be an Almost Kiss to further prolong the Unresolved Sexual Tension.
  • Updated Re-release: All of the AmeMix games that were merged into Lovestruck got extra content such as new love interests or additional decision points. Speakeasy Tonight and To Love & Protect also received revamped artwork.
  • The 'Verse: Characters occasionally cross over for brief cameo appearances in other titles, suggesting that most of them take place in the same world. The exceptions are the medieval fantasy worlds of Love & Legends and Reigning Passions, and the Raygun Gothic Space Opera Starship Promise, which are instead referenced via description as works of fiction.
  • Welcome Episode: Love & Legends, Queen of Thieves, and all of the former AmeMix titles start with a prologue which introduces the heroine, the setting, and the main cast of love interests. Most of the Lovestruck original titles following L&L dispense with the common prologue, but the first episode of each character's route serves much the same purpose, providing an Establishing Character Moment or two for the featured love interest and often ending on a cliffhanger as a hook to draw the reader into the story.