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“When you Google ‘Japan’ and ‘love’, you find all these articles about lonely people who never get married,” she says. I wanted to show the human aspect, the individual stories behind those who use these applications.”Her images reveal the secret lives of thirty-somethings who have accepted living alone instead of looking for love.
They share a common yearning for connection and found it on a touch screen.
Another 48-year-old player spends one of many nights alone in his one-bedroom apartment with his console, chatting with Manaka, his e-girlfriend of five years.
Some like Kosaki, stopped playing Love Plus when the Konami, the game's developer, stopped offering update to the Nintendo DS version.
“He said, ‘Well, you know all I want is someone to say good morning to in the morning and someone to say goodnight to at night.’”These feelings are not limited to Japanese men – game developers have also released romance simulations that cater to women .
“I thought they would tell me all these physical things like, ‘she has to look like this,’ but nobody said anything like that.
These games have remained a distinctly Japanese trend, though.
It’s the subset of a growing video game culture that has dominated the country’s development since the 1980s.
Some people try to match themselves with potential mates by their horoscopes, finding how their personalities were influenced by the stars.
Others look to numerology, and the mystical connections between numbers and life events.