So, You Want to Make a Harem: A Helpful Guide

JoeTheMc84

Lewd
Apr 24, 2022
110
322
LC COIN
71
So, you want to make a harem game? That’s great! Before you jump on down the rabbit hole of coding and rendering for your new project, let me give you some advice. A harem ought to be one of the easiest fetishes to capitalize on. Yet we see time and again developers making easy to avoid mistakes that cost them, at best, time and work, and at worst their whole project. This guide is being written in the hopes of helping you avoid unwanted outcomes. Nothing here is meant to shame any other kinks or genres. This is simply a focus on the Harem genre. I would encourage anyone who enjoys a different genre to go ahead and make their own such threads so we can all enjoy our preferred kinks in the best ways possible!

Note: I will mostly be assuming that you are interested in making a game with a male protagonist. But nearly everything I am saying would apply to a female protagonist as well if you want to make a harem game with a female main character.

Note: If you are not interested in making a harem that is fine, I still would like to think there might be some value to you as well. Also, if you don't like harems then this topic really isn't for you. I would say that if you disagree with anything in this post that is fine, just please do so respectfully.

Note: I would like to ask that if anyone who reads this and finds a game that claims to be a harem but doesn't follow these guidelines to please refrain from spamming that thread with links to this one or anything like that.

First: What is a harem?
Harem is a genre; it defines much of what the story will be about. It isn’t a simple tag or type of content. It has more in common with the genre type such as sci-fi then a tag such as incest. A tag simply tells you what is in a story, a genre tells you what type of story you are getting into.
According to the tags on some websites a harem is...
  • Harem [1 person being courted by at least 3 others, all engaging in consensual sex simultaneously.]
But that doesn’t really capture the true appeal of the genre and fetish. That is so barebones as to be nearly useless. About the only real thing worthwhile to remember from it is the number three or more. At its core a harem is often synonymous with male-polygamy (Though as noted a woman can be the center point of the harem as well), one man having multiple wives, legally or otherwise. A harem is not synonymous with polyamory, or the idea of a group of people all being in one open relationship with each other. To truly capture what appeals to the harem fan there are a few things to remember about a harem. A harem game is focused on a single main character (or MC for short) who is in a relationship with three or more love interests (or LIs for short) who do not engage in sexual activity with others (even with each other without the Player’s permission) and all are aware of each other and approve of being in the harem and finally all end the game together in the harem.

Keep these core principles in mind when developing your harem:
1. A single MC, any more than that and you aren’t making a harem game.
2. Three or more LIs by the end.
3. None of the LI’s have any sexual contact with others. It’s worthwhile to even avoid them having sex before the game starts. That’s right, virgins are preferred. We will get more into this later and the exceptions to the preference for virgins in the harem genre. We will also touch on the possibility of intra-harem sexual contact later as well.
4. The LIs are all aware (eventually) of the harem and are okay with it. There is some leeway here and getting to this point can be part of the fun in building up the harem. Just don’t lean too much on intra-harem drama, it can make the love interests seem less desirable if they are too opposed to the harem.
5. Most importantly, the game should end with the harem intact. Though we will deal with mini-harem, partial-harems, and false-harems later, a true harem game ends with the full-harem.

Those 5 points make a harem. There are some other things that are good for harems to have, but they are optional bonuses to the harem fetish as opposed to requirements. We will get into those later. (All girls living together, pregnancy, incest, romance, drama, etc.) For now, try to focus on those 5 points. If you are missing one or more of those points, then you aren’t making a harem game. Your game may have harem elements, it might even be a great game worth playing and enjoying, but it isn’t a harem game, and you should be honest and upfront if one or more of these points will be missing from your game, so everyone knows what to expect and won’t get any nasty surprises.


Why is having a single Main Character important?
This is simple. Most harem fans enjoy what is called, “Self-Inserting,” as the main character. Self-insert is the idea that the main character is the player’s avatar, an extension of the player. And the player is meant to feel what the MC feels. We aren’t just observing some other person, but we are joining with that main character, we even get to name them ourselves, so we take ownership of him and his actions. He is us in a very emotionally real way, and things that happen to him we can feel deeply. This is what makes AVNs different from other types of content like movies, books, and even other games. Because of this a harem is best when built on a single MC and his choices. This doesn’t mean you can’t show scenes from other character’s perspectives, but you should always keep in mind that harem fans are interested most in the MC and his actions. Even more so when it comes to sex scenes. You should never waste time showing other people’s sex lives. Voyeurism is a perfectly fine fetish, but watching others have sex is not the way to earn points in a harem. Only main characters should be the focus, and your game should focus on one MC and his supporting cast of LIs. Another issue with multiple MCs is that it is often used as a cover for Netorare content. Having more than one MC pursuing LIs is not what fans want out of a harem game. LIs should be solely for the MC. Creating more than one MC in order to pretend that a LI isn’t cheating on another MC because “They are both Main Characters,” is extremely dishonest. You could create a game with more than one MC with harem elements, especially if those MCs have separate LIs but it is no longer a harem game.
  • The quality of the MC: The quality of the MC is particularly important in a harem game. A weak MC, one who stutters at pretty girls, or acts as a doormat will make the game far less enjoyable. This doesn’t mean that your MC needs to be a gigachad thundercock who can do no wrong and treats everyone badly. Simply make the character normal. Make the MC fit the setting. If you want a young inexperienced character that is perfectly fine, he or she will have lots of room to grow. However, most players will simply want to have the MC be competent and not weak willed. Another note is not to over play the character’s reluctance for sexual activity and forming a harem. At a certain point the MC should no longer feel awkward about the idea, if he ever does. As we talk about Love Interests in more depth the idea of a cuckquean will be brought up, this kind of character is perfect for removing the character’s reluctance for picking up more LIs. Having a solid MC is very important, especially for harem fans who enjoy self-inserting as that character.


Why is having three or more Love Interests necessary?
This is the most straightforward of all the principles of a harem. It’s just because the minimum number of LIs to have a harem is three. Two LIs is a throuple, one LI is a solo-game. Those can be a lot of fun to play, but they aren’t harems. It’s like a bicycle has two wheels, more than that and it isn’t a bicycle. Same thing, a harem requires three or more LIs. There is no upper limit, just limit yourself based on your skill. If you’re only comfortable doing three or four LIs then do that. If you want to have fifty LIs, go for it, it’ll be tough, but if you pull it off, it could be fun.


Why can't the Love Interests have other sexual partners?
The LI’s should only have sexual contact with the MC. This could be one of the most important aspects of a harem. I will probably spend the most amount of time and attention here. I will also break it down into subcategories in the hopes of making it as clear as possible.
  • The Trap of “Realism”: Some people have this tendency to say, “Harems aren’t realistic.” Or “An attractive girl being a virgin over age X isn’t realistic.” This is a trap and a silly notion. Vampires aren’t realistic, a man joining the mob at age twenty-two and rising to the rank of boss isn’t realistic, incest isn’t realistic, a man having half a dozen or more beautiful girls having sex with him in rapid succession even in a non-harem isn’t realistic. Very few things in AVNs are realistic. Those who deny a plot point of any kind because it isn’t “realistic” are just unwilling to admit they don’t want to add it and they think they have a bulletproof excuse. Not wanting to add something is fine. Just be honest as to why. There is a difference between realistic and consistent for the genre (aka verisimilitude, or the appearance of being real). It is unrealistic for an eleven year old to fly around on a broom, but in a story set in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter it is expected. In that same setting however, it would be totally “unrealistic” for a muggle to pick up a wand and do magic. The great thing about fiction is you get to set what is “realistic,” or not. Sci-fi and fantasy offer the most obvious options for changing rules. You get to create entire cultures and races, even physics and genetics can be changed to suit the story elements you want. But any setting can be so altered. Even in a run of the mill normal modern setting the MC could be from a family that has a history of unofficial polygamy, or practices incest, or any number of things that for another modern family might be “unrealistic.” Never let what your particular culture says is realistic be the sole defining factor of what you might add in your story, especially when you are happy to compromise in many other areas. And all this leaves out the fact that for all of human history up until about two hundred years ago in Western societies male polygamy was the norm, and still is normal in the vast majority of the world. If a man can support multiple women he often does, outside of the Judeo-Christian influenced world. And of course that even ignores the fact that there are Christian and Judaic sects that themselves allowed male polygamy, which Islam then maintained to the modern day. So any society or even just a family can easily justify seeing harems as normal for them even in a modern setting. The game Sisterly Lust, for example, even had an island nation that had legalized incest and polygamy so that the MC and his LIs could move there to have the outcome he wanted of an incest-harem.
  • The Importance of Virginity: This is one that largely applies more to Male MC games then Female MC games. I will not rehash the arguments against “realism,” except to say this; I worked at a university for over two decades. For the first few years I was a creative writing professor, and for the vast majority of that time I was a life coach and trauma recovery counselor. I can say, with certainty, that porn and popular media are wrong. It is still very likely that a woman or man in their late teens and early twenties is a virgin even at a large university in a large American city. In a harem there is no shortage of LIs. And most harem fans will leave behind a non-virgin when there is an option to do so. This isn’t real life, players are under no obligation to give characters in a game the benefit of the doubt or hear out their reasons for things. This is especially true for characters who fall into the category of “I secretly always loved the MC.” If a LI has always loved the MC then why couldn’t they wait until the MC made an advance? Why did they have sex with others? Which is more romantic? I loved you always and waited, or I loved you always and had sex with the whole football team because of reasons? This is another area where some people cry “realism” to shut down any argument, but as we have already established, no one is here for realism and you, as the creator of the world your story exists in, get to set what is realistic. A childhood friend, a younger or older sister, the existing girlfriend's best friend or sibling… all these characters could be the type that “Always loved the MC,” and very easily be set as virgins and it would be 100% realistic in any setting because virgins are realistic. People pining for another and not giving themselves to someone else is realistic, even romantic. It is a silly person who thinks otherwise. I will not dive overly much into the idea of “Dick Virgins,” or characters who are virgins in that they have never had a man’s dick but have had sex with women or used toys before. Lesbians and bisexual stuff will be dealt with later, and as for toys, that doesn’t matter much, just avoid showing it and talking about it as much as possible. This is not to say that every LI must be a virgin. Milfs, dilfs, and gilfs are all clear cases where not being virgins is not only assumed but needed. You can’t have a mom I’d like to fuck if she isn’t a mom. Another area with some leeway is in Netori, but we will get more into it later. A final point. You might be saying, “But my MC is a thirty-six-year-old man, are you saying his thirty-four-year-old coworker must be a virgin?” No, here is a place where avoiding TMI, or too much information, comes into play. She doesn’t need to be a virgin, but that doesn’t mean she needs to talk about her former lovers. Simply have her be excited to be with the MC now and not bring up her past. As a final note: Think of how many games have the MC start as a virgin and yet LI characters that are younger than him are not. Ask yourself why that is? And you have your answer as to why the concept of virginity has nothing to do with realism or anything else other than the developer's desire on who they want to make one.
  • Milfs: Mothers I’d Like to Fuck, or milfs, are a staple of AVNs. Your harem will likely include one or more. These are an obvious exception from the general advice that LIs be virgins as a defining factor of a milf is that she is a mother. Now milf in common use is sometimes just applied to older women, and that is fine too, however a young milf can also add to the story just keep in mind the same principles apply to a young milf as well. When adding a milf to your harem just keep a few things in mind. Avoid TMI, or too much information. No one needs to know her sexual history. It might be fine to have her say, “It’s been so long since I’ve been with anyone,” but if she were to say. “I just had a guy last night and your cock is twice as big as his…” Well, that would be TMI and not a good option for dialog. Milf are a great addition to a harem, just don’t use them as an excuse to have shitty porn dialog about comparing the MC to other guys.
  • Rape: Rape is an overused troupe to try and emotionally manipulate the player into caring about a character . It more often gets players rolling their eyes now, it has been done to death. If you want to garner sympathy and have a LI with trauma in her past then there are many options open to you. Rape is one, true, but so is physical abuse, the death of a loved one, accidents, or health problems and a hundred other things. This is not to say that you can never use the plot point, just realize it has been so over done that it sometimes has the opposite effect and now feels like baggage. Often seen as evidence of poor writing. And it will put off more players than it will make people sympathize with the character. Use it sparingly and do not dwell on it if you do. As a side note about the MC, what if the MC is a rapist? What if you are making a corruption or mind control game and the MC uses physical sexual force on the LIs. Of course that would mean that this is a core part of the game and so it would need to be included, but even then only the MC should be doing this to the LIs. You should still remember that in a harem it is important that the LIs don’t have sex with others, so the MC could rape the LIs (if it is that kind of story) but that doesn’t suddenly mean others should be doing it. If the MC is corrupting the LIs in a harem it is for him, and not to share, that would be a different type of game, not a harem.
  • Sharing/Swinging: In many players' minds these are no different than Netorare so you might as well just read the next section and apply all of it here. This plays into the lie of the “Alpha Cuck,” which is only believed by cucks (By the way, no shame meant, being a cuck is perfectly fine). There is nothing alpha about sharing or swinging. If the girl is into fucking others your MC is a cuck, if she isn’t into it, you have turned the MC into an asshole who is basically making her get raped to get himself off. Optional is a lie. It fundamentally either makes the girl a slut and not worth it in a harem where there are other girls who are loyal, or it turns the MC into a man making girls around him get raped for his amusement and pleasure. It has no place in a harem game.
  • Netorare: Netorare or NTR for short, is a fetish that is incompatible with the Harem fetish. Thinking that they are in the same ballpark is like trying to put olive oil in your car and expecting it to run because olive oil and motor oil are both oil. While NTR and Harem are both fetishes they are practically polar opposites. NTR is a fetish defined by powerlessness and loss. A single person who cannot even keep and protect the person who means the most to him. Harem is a fetish defined as a power fantasy about gaining. It is about one person gaining the full devotion of many others, so much so that they will willingly share that person sexually with each other. You may ask about the threat of NTR. Don’t antagonists and challenges make a story better? And I also agree that antagonists can add to the story, but not all antagonists need to be sexual. I think that’s a fault a lot of games fall into. Everything has to tie to sex. Like a girl has a troubled past? She was raped, because that’s sexual. A guy is an enemy? Well, he’s trying to steal the girls, because that’s sexual. The MC has an ex-girlfriend before the game starts? She cheated on him. I once had a man I worked with who undermined me all the time. He would be an antagonist of a story written about my life, but he never tried to steal a girl from me. Stories can get stale without conflict, it’s true. But conflict doesn’t need to be sexual. And even if you want the threat of NTR, that doesn’t necessarily mean you must give the option for NTR to succeed, let alone show it. Just have the MC overcome the challenges like he will other challenges. Some people see NTR as realistic, to them I say this: I have never once in my life broken up with a girl, or had her break up with me and then watched her fuck another man. Seeing LIs with other men is entirely unrealistic and peak cuck fantasy.
  • Netori: This is the inverse of NTR. The MC stealing a LI from another person. And it can fit into a harem very well. However, you will want to avoid TMI, or too much information, when implementing Netori. If a girl has a husband, she would be exempt from the preference for virgins, even more so if she is a milf, but it is often a good idea to make her be in a sexless marriage. At the very least sex with the husband should stop once the MC enters the picture. Bonus points if her husband is an asshole or an enemy in the game. If the LI is simply dating then it is better to have her still be a virgin, even using her boyfriend’s attempts to force her to fuck him before she wants to as a cause for her turning to the MC as a preferred boyfriend. If she isn’t a virgin then don’t have her keep having sex after meeting the MC, and of course avoid showing or discussing her having sex even if she hasn’t technically met the MC yet. Then she should cut off her boyfriend as soon as the MC and her meet and she becomes a LI. This is not even uncommon. A woman meets a better man and cuts off her old man sexually even before leaving him for the new man. Never use a bad sex scene as the demonstration that the relationship is on the rocks. Don’t have the MC walk past a married couple’s room and see them having sex but the man just doesn’t satisfy the woman, or he can’t get hard despite her blowing him. That is falling into the porn trap of “Everything must be sexual.” You should avoid that trap.
  • Lesbians and Bisexuality: If you want to add bisexual characters to a harem then it must be 100% optional and only occur when the MC is directly involved or else it is NTR. Lesbians can be used for Netori content, stealing a bisexual girl from her current lesbian girlfriend. If that is the goal, then see the Netori tab. Lesbians could also be used to bring in an existing couple. To have both girls be bisexual and joining the harem, but if that is the goal then use caution. Adding a pair of lesbians can work if the MC becomes the new anchor for the three-part relationship. They shouldn’t continue sexual contact apart from him. The lesbians are no longer a couple but now a part of the MC’s harem and they, like all harem members should be devoted now to the MC. Sexual contact should only happen with him there, if it happens at all and again, it should be the player’s decision. If you wonder what should the members of a harem do when not with the MC? Well, there is a section for that below.
  • Working in the Adult Entertainment Industries: LIs should not be involved in the adult entertainment industry. No porn stars, no camgirls, no strippers, no hookers or prostitutes, and no one who used to do these things but doesn’t anymore. Remember, in a harem there is no shortage of girls. Players are not obligated to hear out how a LI was forced into the industry and hated it, they will just move on and never look at her again. It is a poor choice of LI to use any of these. Porn logic might tell you they are a good choice because you can get an early sex scene with them, but that is silly. You can have a LI for an early sex scene in much better ways as we will get into later. There can be a little wiggle room with camgirls if you make it clear they have never fucked on camera or better yet are still virgins even off camera. But it is probably best to just have the LI be a game streamer, makeup YouTuber, or some other innocent online career, if you want her to have a channel that perhaps the MC first sees her on. As the creator of the world, you can give the LIs any career you want, don’t fall into porn logic and make everything sexual.
  • Other and Weird Magic Stuff: I will now briefly cover a few other topics related to LI sexuality. I will start with traps, futa, and trans characters. They should be 100% optional. If you add such a character to the harem, then their dicks should stay out of other harem members without 100% player approval. Bestiality is a content type with a whole set of baggage on its own. This should be avoided in a harem game. If you want the MC to be a shapeshifter then turning into a monster or wolf, for example, and you want to add in that content to the harem it is possible, but I would advise it to be optional. Tentacles and magic things like that should only be used if they are fully controlled by the MC. Otherwise, they should be avoided. Clones of the MC can be used to get multiple penetration content, but this should be optional. If you use MC clones, then the MC should feel what they feel and be in full control of them. The clones should not have separate personalities, they should seem no different than if the LI used a dildo at the same time the MC was with them, except that the MC is in control and feels what they do, they are an extension of him.


Why do the Love Interests need to agree to the Harem?
Love Interest awareness and acceptance is very important. Getting there can be part of the fun. But it needs to get there. If the LIs don’t know about each other it isn’t a harem, it is cheating. A perfectly fine fetish, but not a harem. Now a note: a game can start with cheating and become a harem, but it is often better to just have the base of a harem in place from the start. The base of a great harem is a LI that wants the MC to build the harem.
  • The Starting Wife/Girlfriend: A game can have a starting wife or girlfriend, but don’t make her dislikable to give the player an excuse if you want to make her optional after the game starts. Also, try not to make the MC a dick who cheats on her, allow the player the option to remain faithful for a while at least. If you have a starting girlfriend and you don’t plan to have her be a driving force of the harem then make the MC reluctant to cheat (even if the player makes a choice to ultimately do it). Use that as a force to have her begin the conversation. Perhaps by meeting another LI and being convinced to help them get the MC. Make her likable and players will want to keep her around and you can even have her be required. The easiest way is to make her the cuckquean. The one who gives the MC permission to build his harem and even helps him do it.
  • Cuckqueans: The Harem Queen, or Cuckquean, cannot be overvalued. They are a wonderful character type for a harem game. Encouraging the MC to gain more LIs and even working as a wingman and helping convince other LIs to join. This is the perfect type of starting girlfriend but can just as easily be an LI the MC meets early on and who convinces the other LIs of the value of the harem after the fact. Is your game set at a college? Maybe the cuckquean is the captain of the volleyball team and some of the other harem members are on the team as well. She uses her position as their captain to remind them they are a team and are strong together. Maybe the cuckquean is a history expert and uses her knowledge of history to convince the others of the value of a harem. Is your game set in a fantasy world? Well then, your cuckquean could literally be the Queen of the MCs growing powerbase and using her position to build alliances by getting other powerful women into the MC’s harem. These are just a few examples of the benefits of this type of character.
  • Reluctant Member: A LI that doesn’t start out on board with the idea of a harem but comes around to it later can be a fun one to explore. But it should not be dragged out too long. This type of LI should never give the MC an ultimatum or act bitchy when learning about the harem. They should instead ask for time to make the choice. They should speak to other harem members perhaps or look into harems. But at the end of the day, they should always come around to the idea. If they are an early harem member, they could even become the one convincing other LIs to join later, as they were reluctant at first.
  • The Unrequited Love: The childhood friend, the sister, the best friend’s sister, the coworker, or any number of other character types that have known the MC for a long time and often have, “Always loved the MC,” but never had a relationship with the MC for some reason. These must always be virgins in a harem game. It makes no sense, in a power fantasy of the harem, for these character types to have assumed they couldn’t be with the MC and so settled for someone else. They should have pined for the MC and never lost hope that the MC would eventually see them and choose them. These characters should be some of the first to willingly join the harem. It is their chance, and they should jump at it.


Why must it end with a Harem?
A true harem ends in a harem. If it doesn’t end in a harem, then it simply isn’t a harem. It is some other type of game with harem elements, but not a harem. Your story must end with all the LIs in the harem to be a real harem. You could make a perfectly fine game with some harem elements but if it doesn't end in a harem then it is something else.
  • Partial or Mini-harem: A mini-harem is a false-harem that allows groups of LIs to form their own separate harems but not allow them to all accept each other. This is silly. If four LIs are willing to share the MC then why would they draw the line at a fifth, or even five more LIs? It is an arbitrary thing to say, “These three LIs will be together, but not this one,” or “All these LIs will share with each other but won’t let one more in.” Again I will say, this is all fantasy, it is a fictional story. You can make all the characters fine with sharing by the end if you want that. Once you open the door to any form of harem you have tossed modern moral codes out of that door. So why not simply make the harem a full one? If you simply don’t want to do this then that is fine, but be upfront and honest about it. If you’re reluctant because of living space, or some other reason, see below.


Now some options and side issues:
The following are topics that are not directly about harems but about how some secondary things may relate and interact with a harem. I may increase this list as more topics come up.
  • Optional Love Interests: About making LIs optional, it isn’t really a requirement for a harem. And if you make the LIs likable and worthwhile, no one ought to reject them anyway. But options when it comes to LIs and fetishes will rarely go amiss as long as presenting the option doesn’t damage the character or story. This does beg the question though, what if the MC does reject an LI? This can be handled simply. The LI can simply disappear, much like in real life, when I have left a girl she has left my life. I don’t know her current status, she could be married, have joined a convent, or be dead. Especially in the scoop of a story with a set beginning and end we do not need to dive into what a rejected LI has done once rejected. If the character is still important to the story and will be seen in the future regardless then that is possible, but in that case just have the LI do what is needed for the story. The player has decided they do not care about that LI and so forcing the player to see the intricacies of that LI’s life is not a good idea. And you should never show a rejected LI having sex with others. Again, I have never watched someone I rejected having sex. It is the peak unrealistic cuck fantasy and has no place in a harem game.
  • Intra-Harem Relationships: How the members of a harem interact is important and needs to be discussed. There can be rivalries early in a harem, two girls who perhaps don’t get along right away. Nothing is wrong with some girls having mini rivals to compete for the MC's love at the start of it, or if they had a preexisting rivalry beforehand. But these should be resolved quickly. The LI should have a sense of equality and none should see themselves as better or less loved than any other. A simple sisterhood should form between them, a team dynamic. Childlike arguments and disagreements should not be common. All the LIs are adults, and that should win out, they have a common bond, their love for the MC. LIs can love each other without them needing to fuck each other. Think about all the people in your life that you love, how many of them do you fuck? How many of them do you even want to fuck? The LIs can also have lives in terms of them going out with each other to shop, plan dates with the MC, go to work, etc. They can talk and watch movies. They can even cuddle and hold each other in vulnerable moments while discussing insecurities, dreams, and fears. They can talk about the MC too. For example, how good of a lover the MC is or something maybe he does with them that is unique. A strong harem is built on bonds. If the LIs have a good bond with each other, that makes the job easier for the MC, and it also makes the harem stronger. A strong sisterly bond doesn't mean, “Oh, let's fuck each other.” And even during group sex the urge to force the women to be sexual should be avoided, or made 100% optional and under the player’s control. Using that to show they care and love each other falls back into the trap or porn logic where everything needs to be sexual. “Oh the girls love each other, therefore they must fuck.” A silly notion. Lis should not be catching romantic feelings for each other. You might say, “Well, during a group scene what do the girls do? Just wait their turn?” I would say to that, “What do men do during a gangbang? Do they start to blow one another or start a circle jerk?” No, they wait for their turn with the girl at the center. In a harem gangbang with the MC in the center the LIs should do this as well unless the player gives the go ahead to do more. They can encourage one another, comment on the MC’s performance, or even engage in touching and kissing the MC.
  • Side Girls: Side girls, or one-off girls, are characters usually used to add early sex to a harem game. This is a waste in harem games. Often it is better to just advance the story of a real LI, have a starting girlfriend for early scenes, or just have one LI who is willing to go all the way quickly because that LI is an Unrequited Love (see above) and already prepared to be with the MC. A problem with side girls is several fold. One, they often are liked by the players and they will want more of the character. Two, they are stealing time from actual LIs and the actual plot. Three, they often make the MC seem pathetic, hiring a whore, or hooking up at a bar, or make him seem uncaring about cheating on the existing LIs. None of which fits with a harem. There is no shortage of LIs in a harem, use one for the early scenes. It isn’t hard.
  • Pregnancy: Pregnancy can add a lot to a harem game. If you don’t want to have this, be upfront about it and avoid a few pitfalls that can arise when not having it. Remember that none of the characters are real. No character will get pregnant from a creampie unless you code it to happen. Avoid forced pull outs and condoms, either make them a player choice or don’t have them. Avoid the MC and LIs from unilaterally deciding to get the morning after pill. Either make it a player choice or don’t have it mentioned at all and simply don’t have the character get pregnant.
  • Incest: Incest is a common fetish to attach to the harem genre. They go together like peanut butter and jelly. Siblings and parents can make great LIs, they can have a starting emotional bond and loyalty to the MC and can be the first character the MC meets when the story starts. Siblings, especially sisters, should always be virgins whenever possible. If you have an older MC (in his thirties for example), then siblings of a similar age might not be virgins. Maybe a sister is even allowing the MC to have a niece to add to the harem, so of course the sister isn’t a virgin if she had a daughter. But this is the exception. A trade off. The player has traded a sister’s virginity to add a whole new LI to the story, that is a reasonable trade. But even here, having preestablished incest between the MC and a sister can give the MC a niece for the harem and still maintain that the MC took the sister’s virginity in the past. If a mother will be added to the harem, then it should follow the rules of Netori above. Or even have the father simply be dead or already divorced from the mother. If you add incest to a game set in the modern era especially then you are already tossing realism out of the setting, so don’t be afraid to push that and make as many family members virgins as possible. Let alone when you step into a harem and other genres like sci-fi and fantasy. Incest is wincest after all.
  • Romance/Corruption: Romance is often a staple of the harem genre, but corruption can also be used to form the harem. This comes down to the type of story you want, and either can work, you should simply be honest about which type of harem you are making and remember the other harem guidelines.
  • Living Arrangements: This can be a point of contention for some. Do all the LIs have to live in the same house as the MC? I would say, it depends. If possible, yes. The ending of a harem game (if not before then even) should involve all the LIs being together with the MC in one home, or at least in very close proximity, such as a single neighborhood or property. However, what if your harem is set in a fantasy world and one of the harem members is a queen, another is a demon ruler in hell, while the last is an angel in heaven? Well, lucky that in a fantasy setting the MC could teleport to those different locations, the LIs could come to him at least once a week, or they could live with him most of the time and return to their realms when needed. And this is just a few simple solutions. It is the same in any setting. A modern setting the LIs could work from home or in the city they live in with the MC, it could even be a plot point of the LI having to get transferred to the new city. In sci-fi there are ships that can travel faster than light, so even if LIs live on different planets and the MC is a space pirate then he simply has a route he traveled that takes him to all of them and they are devoted to him. That is the key. They can live elsewhere, though that is not ideal, but they should adhere to the guidelines, their loyalty is to the MC.
  • Friends and Non-Love Interest NPCs: This will cover non-antagonist NPCs. This is also a point of contention. Friends can be tricky. They take screen time away from LIs and often add very little that couldn’t have been done by a LI. They can also be seen as rivals and developers often feel a need to give these side characters their “own lives” that the MC has to either see or even facilitate. I have never watched a friend of mine have sex, even when I have given them advice, but often friends in AVNs are used to create needless voyeurism scenes that have no place in a harem game. Assuming a male MC, if he has a friend introduce him to an LI, why couldn’t another LI have been the one doing the introduction? If he has a female NPC as a friend, why isn’t she a LI? Why would a developer create a non-LI character who is integral to the plot when an LI could have filled that role? Whenever you are thinking about adding an NPC, ask a few questions. Could this role be filled with an existing or a new LI? If yes, then do that. Am I adding to my work by creating a new character when an existing character could work? If yes, use an existing one. Am I making a character players will like and want as an LI? If yes, then make that character an LI. Do I really like this character and want to use them for more in the story? If yes, then either make them an LI or even use them in another project late if you like them so much.
  • Drama and Cliffhangers: If you plan to present drama or negative situations in an update in the interest of resolving them or mitigating them in the next release, use caution. Don't present adversity and shit all over the MC in a release without any reprieve, because your supporters, the people who would otherwise be advertising and recommending your games to other people, get all the shit without any of the resolution, for months. You know the full story. The people playing do not, they will stew on the negative and that will become the talking point of the story for months. Cliffhangers are fine, but they should not be used at the cost of the story. Cliffhangers should be things like an unknown knock on the door. A sudden realization that a non-LI NPC has died or gone missing. The phone rings while the MC is with a LI and he ignores it. These add a bit of mystery about the story, but they don't paint the LIs in a negative light. Cliffhangers should never be things like a LI leaving on a date with a guy. A LI revealing they have been working for an enemy all along. A LI leaves the MC waiting once she finds out about other girls. Cliffhangers should not be used to give uncertainty about a LI and her place in the story. You can have events where the LIs are put in interesting situations, but those should be resolved in the same update. Otherwise, players will be put off by it.
  • Antagonists: Villains and rivals can add to the plot. But they need not be sexual in nature. Usually they are destined to lose, that is the nature of stories and especially escapism self-insert power fantasies like a harem story. If they could be redeemed and turned into a LI also that can work, but it should be optional and done rarely. The drama and Netorare sections add more information about ways antagonists can be used in harems.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
  • Heart
Reactions: 20 users

Hola773

Registered
Feb 21, 2023
1
3
LC COIN
0
@JoeTheMc84 Thanks for this guide I have to say its realy good and for any Dev that wants to create a Harem Game it has easy to follow up points to avoid Problem for Fans of this genre.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users
U

User_26721

Unconfirmed
Great guide (hopefully this wont get deleted:ROFLMAO:)
 
  • Like
  • Haha
Reactions: 2 users

Penis Parker

Registered
Feb 28, 2023
2
4
LC COIN
0
So, you want to make a harem game? That’s great! Before you jump on down the rabbit hole of coding and rendering for your new project, let me give you some advice. A harem ought to be one of the easiest fetishes to capitalize on. Yet we see time and again developers making easy to avoid mistakes that cost them, at best, time and work, and at worst their whole project. This guide is being written in the hopes of helping you avoid unwanted outcomes. Nothing here is meant to shame any other kinks or genres. This is simply a focus on the Harem genre. I would encourage anyone who enjoys a different genre to go ahead and make their own such threads so we can all enjoy our preferred kinks in the best ways possible!

Note: I will mostly be assuming that you are interested in making a game with a male protagonist. But nearly everything I am saying would apply to a female protagonist as well if you want to make a harem game with a female main character.

Note: If you are not interested in making a harem that is fine, I still would like to think there might be some value to you as well. Also, if you don't like harems then this topic really isn't for you. I would say that if you disagree with anything in this post that is fine, just please do so respectfully.

Note: I would like to ask that if anyone who reads this and finds a game that claims to be a harem but doesn't follow these guidelines to please refrain from spamming that thread with links to this one or anything like that.

First: What is a harem?
Harem is a genre; it defines much of what the story will be about. It isn’t a simple tag or type of content. It has more in common with the genre type such as sci-fi then a tag such as incest. A tag simply tells you what is in a story, a genre tells you what type of story you are getting into.
According to the tags on some websites a harem is...
  • Harem [1 person being courted by at least 3 others, all engaging in consensual sex simultaneously.]
But that doesn’t really capture the true appeal of the genre and fetish. That is so barebones as to be nearly useless. About the only real thing worthwhile to remember from it is the number three or more. At its core a harem is often synonymous with male-polygamy (Though as noted a woman can be the center point of the harem as well), one man having multiple wives, legally or otherwise. A harem is not synonymous with polyamory, or the idea of a group of people all being in one open relationship with each other. To truly capture what appeals to the harem fan there are a few things to remember about a harem. A harem game is focused on a single main character (or MC for short) who is in a relationship with three or more love interests (or LIs for short) who do not engage in sexual activity with others (even with each other without the Player’s permission) and all are aware of each other and approve of being in the harem and finally all end the game together in the harem.

Keep these core principles in mind when developing your harem:
1. A single MC, any more than that and you aren’t making a harem game.
2. Three or more LIs by the end.
3. None of the LI’s have any sexual contact with others. It’s worthwhile to even avoid them having sex before the game starts. That’s right, virgins are preferred. We will get more into this later and the exceptions to the preference for virgins in the harem genre. We will also touch on the possibility of intra-harem sexual contact later as well.
4. The LIs are all aware (eventually) of the harem and are okay with it. There is some leeway here and getting to this point can be part of the fun in building up the harem. Just don’t lean too much on intra-harem drama, it can make the love interests seem less desirable if they are too opposed to the harem.
5. Most importantly, the game should end with the harem intact. Though we will deal with mini-harem, partial-harems, and false-harems later, a true harem game ends with the full-harem.

Those 5 points make a harem. There are some other things that are good for harems to have, but they are optional bonuses to the harem fetish as opposed to requirements. We will get into those later. (All girls living together, pregnancy, incest, romance, drama, etc.) For now, try to focus on those 5 points. If you are missing one or more of those points, then you aren’t making a harem game. Your game may have harem elements, it might even be a great game worth playing and enjoying, but it isn’t a harem game, and you should be honest and upfront if one or more of these points will be missing from your game, so everyone knows what to expect and won’t get any nasty surprises.


Why is having a single Main Character important?
This is simple. Most harem fans enjoy what is called, “Self-Inserting,” as the main character. Self-insert is the idea that the main character is the player’s avatar, an extension of the player. And the player is meant to feel what the MC feels. We aren’t just observing some other person, but we are joining with that main character, we even get to name them ourselves, so we take ownership of him and his actions. He is us in a very emotionally real way, and things that happen to him we can feel deeply. This is what makes AVNs different from other types of content like movies, books, and even other games. Because of this a harem is best when built on a single MC and his choices. This doesn’t mean you can’t show scenes from other character’s perspectives, but you should always keep in mind that harem fans are interested most in the MC and his actions. Even more so when it comes to sex scenes. You should never waste time showing other people’s sex lives. Voyeurism is a perfectly fine fetish, but watching others have sex is not the way to earn points in a harem. Only main characters should be the focus, and your game should focus on one MC and his supporting cast of LIs. Another issue with multiple MCs is that it is often used as a cover for Netorare content. Having more than one MC pursuing LIs is not what fans want out of a harem game. LIs should be solely for the MC. Creating more than one MC in order to pretend that a LI isn’t cheating on another MC because “They are both Main Characters,” is extremely dishonest. You could create a game with more than one MC with harem elements, especially if those MCs have separate LIs but it is no longer a harem game.
  • The quality of the MC: The quality of the MC is particularly important in a harem game. A weak MC, one who stutters at pretty girls, or acts as a doormat will make the game far less enjoyable. This doesn’t mean that your MC needs to be a gigachad thundercock who can do no wrong and treats everyone badly. Simply make the character normal. Make the MC fit the setting. If you want a young inexperienced character that is perfectly fine, he or she will have lots of room to grow. However, most players will simply want to have the MC be competent and not weak willed. Another note is not to over play the character’s reluctance for sexual activity and forming a harem. At a certain point the MC should no longer feel awkward about the idea, if he ever does. As we talk about Love Interests in more depth the idea of a cuckquean will be brought up, this kind of character is perfect for removing the character’s reluctance for picking up more LIs. Having a solid MC is very important, especially for harem fans who enjoy self-inserting as that character.


Why is having three or more Love Interests necessary?
This is the most straightforward of all the principles of a harem. It’s just because the minimum number of LIs to have a harem is three. Two LIs is a throuple, one LI is a solo-game. Those can be a lot of fun to play, but they aren’t harems. It’s like a bicycle has two wheels, more than that and it isn’t a bicycle. Same thing, a harem requires three or more LIs. There is no upper limit, just limit yourself based on your skill. If you’re only comfortable doing three or four LIs then do that. If you want to have fifty LIs, go for it, it’ll be tough, but if you pull it off, it could be fun.


Why can't the Love Interests have other sexual partners?
The LI’s should only have sexual contact with the MC. This could be one of the most important aspects of a harem. I will probably spend the most amount of time and attention here. I will also break it down into subcategories in the hopes of making it as clear as possible.
  • The Trap of “Realism”: Some people have this tendency to say, “Harems aren’t realistic.” Or “An attractive girl being a virgin over age X isn’t realistic.” This is a trap and a silly notion. Vampires aren’t realistic, a man joining the mob at age twenty-two and rising to the rank of boss isn’t realistic, incest isn’t realistic, a man having half a dozen or more beautiful girls having sex with him in rapid succession even in a non-harem isn’t realistic. Very few things in AVNs are realistic. Those who deny a plot point of any kind because it isn’t “realistic” are just unwilling to admit they don’t want to add it and they think they have a bulletproof excuse. Not wanting to add something is fine. Just be honest as to why. There is a difference between realistic and consistent for the genre (aka verisimilitude, or the appearance of being real). It is unrealistic for an eleven year old to fly around on a broom, but in a story set in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter it is expected. In that same setting however, it would be totally “unrealistic” for a muggle to pick up a wand and do magic. The great thing about fiction is you get to set what is “realistic,” or not. Sci-fi and fantasy offer the most obvious options for changing rules. You get to create entire cultures and races, even physics and genetics can be changed to suit the story elements you want. But any setting can be so altered. Even in a run of the mill normal modern setting the MC could be from a family that has a history of unofficial polygamy, or practices incest, or any number of things that for another modern family might be “unrealistic.” Never let what your particular culture says is realistic be the sole defining factor of what you might add in your story, especially when you are happy to compromise in many other areas. And all this leaves out the fact that for all of human history up until about two hundred years ago in Western societies male polygamy was the norm, and still is normal in the vast majority of the world. If a man can support multiple women he often does, outside of the Judeo-Christian influenced world. And of course that even ignores the fact that there are Christian and Judaic sects that themselves allowed male polygamy, which Islam then maintained to the modern day. So any society or even just a family can easily justify seeing harems as normal for them even in a modern setting. The game Sisterly Lust, for example, even had an island nation that had legalized incest and polygamy so that the MC and his LIs could move there to have the outcome he wanted of an incest-harem.
  • The Importance of Virginity: This is one that largely applies more to Male MC games then Female MC games. I will not rehash the arguments against “realism,” except to say this; I worked at a university for over two decades. For the first few years I was a creative writing professor, and for the vast majority of that time I was a life coach and trauma recovery counselor. I can say, with certainty, that porn and popular media are wrong. It is still very likely that a woman or man in their late teens and early twenties is a virgin even at a large university in a large American city. In a harem there is no shortage of LIs. And most harem fans will leave behind a non-virgin when there is an option to do so. This isn’t real life, players are under no obligation to give characters in a game the benefit of the doubt or hear out their reasons for things. This is especially true for characters who fall into the category of “I secretly always loved the MC.” If a LI has always loved the MC then why couldn’t they wait until the MC made an advance? Why did they have sex with others? Which is more romantic? I loved you always and waited, or I loved you always and had sex with the whole football team because of reasons? This is another area where some people cry “realism” to shut down any argument, but as we have already established, no one is here for realism and you, as the creator of the world your story exists in, get to set what is realistic. A childhood friend, a younger or older sister, the existing girlfriend's best friend or sibling… all these characters could be the type that “Always loved the MC,” and very easily be set as virgins and it would be 100% realistic in any setting because virgins are realistic. People pining for another and not giving themselves to someone else is realistic, even romantic. It is a silly person who thinks otherwise. I will not dive overly much into the idea of “Dick Virgins,” or characters who are virgins in that they have never had a man’s dick but have had sex with women or used toys before. Lesbians and bisexual stuff will be dealt with later, and as for toys, that doesn’t matter much, just avoid showing it and talking about it as much as possible. This is not to say that every LI must be a virgin. Milfs, dilfs, and gilfs are all clear cases where not being virgins is not only assumed but needed. You can’t have a mom I’d like to fuck if she isn’t a mom. Another area with some leeway is in Netori, but we will get more into it later. A final point. You might be saying, “But my MC is a thirty-six-year-old man, are you saying his thirty-four-year-old coworker must be a virgin?” No, here is a place where avoiding TMI, or too much information, comes into play. She doesn’t need to be a virgin, but that doesn’t mean she needs to talk about her former lovers. Simply have her be excited to be with the MC now and not bring up her past. As a final note: Think of how many games have the MC start as a virgin and yet LI characters that are younger than him are not. Ask yourself why that is? And you have your answer as to why the concept of virginity has nothing to do with realism or anything else other than the developer's desire on who they want to make one.
  • Milfs: Mothers I’d Like to Fuck, or milfs, are a staple of AVNs. Your harem will likely include one or more. These are an obvious exception from the general advice that LIs be virgins as a defining factor of a milf is that she is a mother. Now milf in common use is sometimes just applied to older women, and that is fine too, however a young milf can also add to the story just keep in mind the same principles apply to a young milf as well. When adding a milf to your harem just keep a few things in mind. Avoid TMI, or too much information. No one needs to know her sexual history. It might be fine to have her say, “It’s been so long since I’ve been with anyone,” but if she were to say. “I just had a guy last night and your cock is twice as big as his…” Well, that would be TMI and not a good option for dialog. Milf are a great addition to a harem, just don’t use them as an excuse to have shitty porn dialog about comparing the MC to other guys.
  • Rape: Rape is an overused troupe to try and emotionally manipulate the player into caring about a character . It more often gets players rolling their eyes now, it has been done to death. If you want to garner sympathy and have a LI with trauma in her past then there are many options open to you. Rape is one, true, but so is physical abuse, the death of a loved one, accidents, or health problems and a hundred other things. This is not to say that you can never use the plot point, just realize it has been so over done that it sometimes has the opposite effect and now feels like baggage. Often seen as evidence of poor writing. And it will put off more players than it will make people sympathize with the character. Use it sparingly and do not dwell on it if you do. As a side note about the MC, what if the MC is a rapist? What if you are making a corruption or mind control game and the MC uses physical sexual force on the LIs. Of course that would mean that this is a core part of the game and so it would need to be included, but even then only the MC should be doing this to the LIs. You should still remember that in a harem it is important that the LIs don’t have sex with others, so the MC could rape the LIs (if it is that kind of story) but that doesn’t suddenly mean others should be doing it. If the MC is corrupting the LIs in a harem it is for him, and not to share, that would be a different type of game, not a harem.
  • Sharing/Swinging: In many players' minds these are no different than Netorare so you might as well just read the next section and apply all of it here. This plays into the lie of the “Alpha Cuck,” which is only believed by cucks (By the way, no shame meant, being a cuck is perfectly fine). There is nothing alpha about sharing or swinging. If the girl is into fucking others your MC is a cuck, if she isn’t into it, you have turned the MC into an asshole who is basically making her get raped to get himself off. Optional is a lie. It fundamentally either makes the girl a slut and not worth it in a harem where there are other girls who are loyal, or it turns the MC into a man making girls around him get raped for his amusement and pleasure. It has no place in a harem game.
  • Netorare: Netorare or NTR for short, is a fetish that is incompatible with the Harem fetish. Thinking that they are in the same ballpark is like trying to put olive oil in your car and expecting it to run because olive oil and motor oil are both oil. While NTR and Harem are both fetishes they are practically polar opposites. NTR is a fetish defined by powerlessness and loss. A single person who cannot even keep and protect the person who means the most to him. Harem is a fetish defined as a power fantasy about gaining. It is about one person gaining the full devotion of many others, so much so that they will willingly share that person sexually with each other. You may ask about the threat of NTR. Don’t antagonists and challenges make a story better? And I also agree that antagonists can add to the story, but not all antagonists need to be sexual. I think that’s a fault a lot of games fall into. Everything has to tie to sex. Like a girl has a troubled past? She was raped, because that’s sexual. A guy is an enemy? Well, he’s trying to steal the girls, because that’s sexual. The MC has an ex-girlfriend before the game starts? She cheated on him. I once had a man I worked with who undermined me all the time. He would be an antagonist of a story written about my life, but he never tried to steal a girl from me. Stories can get stale without conflict, it’s true. But conflict doesn’t need to be sexual. And even if you want the threat of NTR, that doesn’t necessarily mean you must give the option for NTR to succeed, let alone show it. Just have the MC overcome the challenges like he will other challenges. Some people see NTR as realistic, to them I say this: I have never once in my life broken up with a girl, or had her break up with me and then watched her fuck another man. Seeing LIs with other men is entirely unrealistic and peak cuck fantasy.
  • Netori: This is the inverse of NTR. The MC stealing a LI from another person. And it can fit into a harem very well. However, you will want to avoid TMI, or too much information, when implementing Netori. If a girl has a husband, she would be exempt from the preference for virgins, even more so if she is a milf, but it is often a good idea to make her be in a sexless marriage. At the very least sex with the husband should stop once the MC enters the picture. Bonus points if her husband is an asshole or an enemy in the game. If the LI is simply dating then it is better to have her still be a virgin, even using her boyfriend’s attempts to force her to fuck him before she wants to as a cause for her turning to the MC as a preferred boyfriend. If she isn’t a virgin then don’t have her keep having sex after meeting the MC, and of course avoid showing or discussing her having sex even if she hasn’t technically met the MC yet. Then she should cut off her boyfriend as soon as the MC and her meet and she becomes a LI. This is not even uncommon. A woman meets a better man and cuts off her old man sexually even before leaving him for the new man. Never use a bad sex scene as the demonstration that the relationship is on the rocks. Don’t have the MC walk past a married couple’s room and see them having sex but the man just doesn’t satisfy the woman, or he can’t get hard despite her blowing him. That is falling into the porn trap of “Everything must be sexual.” You should avoid that trap.
  • Lesbians and Bisexuality: If you want to add bisexual characters to a harem then it must be 100% optional and only occur when the MC is directly involved or else it is NTR. Lesbians can be used for Netori content, stealing a bisexual girl from her current lesbian girlfriend. If that is the goal, then see the Netori tab. Lesbians could also be used to bring in an existing couple. To have both girls be bisexual and joining the harem, but if that is the goal then use caution. Adding a pair of lesbians can work if the MC becomes the new anchor for the three-part relationship. They shouldn’t continue sexual contact apart from him. The lesbians are no longer a couple but now a part of the MC’s harem and they, like all harem members should be devoted now to the MC. Sexual contact should only happen with him there, if it happens at all and again, it should be the player’s decision. If you wonder what should the members of a harem do when not with the MC? Well, there is a section for that below.
  • Working in the Adult Entertainment Industries: LIs should not be involved in the adult entertainment industry. No porn stars, no camgirls, no strippers, no hookers or prostitutes, and no one who used to do these things but doesn’t anymore. Remember, in a harem there is no shortage of girls. Players are not obligated to hear out how a LI was forced into the industry and hated it, they will just move on and never look at her again. It is a poor choice of LI to use any of these. Porn logic might tell you they are a good choice because you can get an early sex scene with them, but that is silly. You can have a LI for an early sex scene in much better ways as we will get into later. There can be a little wiggle room with camgirls if you make it clear they have never fucked on camera or better yet are still virgins even off camera. But it is probably best to just have the LI be a game streamer, makeup YouTuber, or some other innocent online career, if you want her to have a channel that perhaps the MC first sees her on. As the creator of the world, you can give the LIs any career you want, don’t fall into porn logic and make everything sexual.
  • Other and Weird Magic Stuff: I will now briefly cover a few other topics related to LI sexuality. I will start with traps, futa, and trans characters. They should be 100% optional. If you add such a character to the harem, then their dicks should stay out of other harem members without 100% player approval. Bestiality is a content type with a whole set of baggage on its own. This should be avoided in a harem game. If you want the MC to be a shapeshifter then turning into a monster or wolf, for example, and you want to add in that content to the harem it is possible, but I would advise it to be optional. Tentacles and magic things like that should only be used if they are fully controlled by the MC. Otherwise, they should be avoided. Clones of the MC can be used to get multiple penetration content, but this should be optional. If you use MC clones, then the MC should feel what they feel and be in full control of them. The clones should not have separate personalities, they should seem no different than if the LI used a dildo at the same time the MC was with them, except that the MC is in control and feels what they do, they are an extension of him.


Why do the Love Interests need to agree to the Harem?
Love Interest awareness and acceptance is very important. Getting there can be part of the fun. But it needs to get there. If the LIs don’t know about each other it isn’t a harem, it is cheating. A perfectly fine fetish, but not a harem. Now a note: a game can start with cheating and become a harem, but it is often better to just have the base of a harem in place from the start. The base of a great harem is a LI that wants the MC to build the harem.
  • The Starting Wife/Girlfriend: A game can have a starting wife or girlfriend, but don’t make her dislikable to give the player an excuse if you want to make her optional after the game starts. Also, try not to make the MC a dick who cheats on her, allow the player the option to remain faithful for a while at least. If you have a starting girlfriend and you don’t plan to have her be a driving force of the harem then make the MC reluctant to cheat (even if the player makes a choice to ultimately do it). Use that as a force to have her begin the conversation. Perhaps by meeting another LI and being convinced to help them get the MC. Make her likable and players will want to keep her around and you can even have her be required. The easiest way is to make her the cuckquean. The one who gives the MC permission to build his harem and even helps him do it.
  • Cuckqueans: The Harem Queen, or Cuckquean, cannot be overvalued. They are a wonderful character type for a harem game. Encouraging the MC to gain more LIs and even working as a wingman and helping convince other LIs to join. This is the perfect type of starting girlfriend but can just as easily be an LI the MC meets early on and who convinces the other LIs of the value of the harem after the fact. Is your game set at a college? Maybe the cuckquean is the captain of the volleyball team and some of the other harem members are on the team as well. She uses her position as their captain to remind them they are a team and are strong together. Maybe the cuckquean is a history expert and uses her knowledge of history to convince the others of the value of a harem. Is your game set in a fantasy world? Well then, your cuckquean could literally be the Queen of the MCs growing powerbase and using her position to build alliances by getting other powerful women into the MC’s harem. These are just a few examples of the benefits of this type of character.
  • Reluctant Member: A LI that doesn’t start out on board with the idea of a harem but comes around to it later can be a fun one to explore. But it should not be dragged out too long. This type of LI should never give the MC an ultimatum or act bitchy when learning about the harem. They should instead ask for time to make the choice. They should speak to other harem members perhaps or look into harems. But at the end of the day, they should always come around to the idea. If they are an early harem member, they could even become the one convincing other LIs to join later, as they were reluctant at first.
  • The Unrequited Love: The childhood friend, the sister, the best friend’s sister, the coworker, or any number of other character types that have known the MC for a long time and often have, “Always loved the MC,” but never had a relationship with the MC for some reason. These must always be virgins in a harem game. It makes no sense, in a power fantasy of the harem, for these character types to have assumed they couldn’t be with the MC and so settled for someone else. They should have pined for the MC and never lost hope that the MC would eventually see them and choose them. These characters should be some of the first to willingly join the harem. It is their chance, and they should jump at it.


Why must it end with a Harem?
A true harem ends in a harem. If it doesn’t end in a harem, then it simply isn’t a harem. It is some other type of game with harem elements, but not a harem. Your story must end with all the LIs in the harem to be a real harem. You could make a perfectly fine game with some harem elements but if it doesn't end in a harem then it is something else.
  • Partial or Mini-harem: A mini-harem is a false-harem that allows groups of LIs to form their own separate harems but not allow them to all accept each other. This is silly. If four LIs are willing to share the MC then why would they draw the line at a fifth, or even five more LIs? It is an arbitrary thing to say, “These three LIs will be together, but not this one,” or “All these LIs will share with each other but won’t let one more in.” Again I will say, this is all fantasy, it is a fictional story. You can make all the characters fine with sharing by the end if you want that. Once you open the door to any form of harem you have tossed modern moral codes out of that door. So why not simply make the harem a full one? If you simply don’t want to do this then that is fine, but be upfront and honest about it. If you’re reluctant because of living space, or some other reason, see below.


Now some options and side issues:
The following are topics that are not directly about harems but about how some secondary things may relate and interact with a harem. I may increase this list as more topics come up.
  • Optional Love Interests: About making LIs optional, it isn’t really a requirement for a harem. And if you make the LIs likable and worthwhile, no one ought to reject them anyway. But options when it comes to LIs and fetishes will rarely go amiss as long as presenting the option doesn’t damage the character or story. This does beg the question though, what if the MC does reject an LI? This can be handled simply. The LI can simply disappear, much like in real life, when I have left a girl she has left my life. I don’t know her current status, she could be married, have joined a convent, or be dead. Especially in the scoop of a story with a set beginning and end we do not need to dive into what a rejected LI has done once rejected. If the character is still important to the story and will be seen in the future regardless then that is possible, but in that case just have the LI do what is needed for the story. The player has decided they do not care about that LI and so forcing the player to see the intricacies of that LI’s life is not a good idea. And you should never show a rejected LI having sex with others. Again, I have never watched someone I rejected having sex. It is the peak unrealistic cuck fantasy and has no place in a harem game.
  • Intra-Harem Relationships: How the members of a harem interact is important and needs to be discussed. There can be rivalries early in a harem, two girls who perhaps don’t get along right away. Nothing is wrong with some girls having mini rivals to compete for the MC's love at the start of it, or if they had a preexisting rivalry beforehand. But these should be resolved quickly. The LI should have a sense of equality and none should see themselves as better or less loved than any other. A simple sisterhood should form between them, a team dynamic. Childlike arguments and disagreements should not be common. All the LIs are adults, and that should win out, they have a common bond, their love for the MC. LIs can love each other without them needing to fuck each other. Think about all the people in your life that you love, how many of them do you fuck? How many of them do you even want to fuck? The LIs can also have lives in terms of them going out with each other to shop, plan dates with the MC, go to work, etc. They can talk and watch movies. They can even cuddle and hold each other in vulnerable moments while discussing insecurities, dreams, and fears. They can talk about the MC too. For example, how good of a lover the MC is or something maybe he does with them that is unique. A strong harem is built on bonds. If the LIs have a good bond with each other, that makes the job easier for the MC, and it also makes the harem stronger. A strong sisterly bond doesn't mean, “Oh, let's fuck each other.” And even during group sex the urge to force the women to be sexual should be avoided, or made 100% optional and under the player’s control. Using that to show they care and love each other falls back into the trap or porn logic where everything needs to be sexual. “Oh the girls love each other, therefore they must fuck.” A silly notion. Lis should not be catching romantic feelings for each other. You might say, “Well, during a group scene what do the girls do? Just wait their turn?” I would say to that, “What do men do during a gangbang? Do they start to blow one another or start a circle jerk?” No, they wait for their turn with the girl at the center. In a harem gangbang with the MC in the center the LIs should do this as well unless the player gives the go ahead to do more. They can encourage one another, comment on the MC’s performance, or even engage in touching and kissing the MC.
  • Side Girls: Side girls, or one-off girls, are characters usually used to add early sex to a harem game. This is a waste in harem games. Often it is better to just advance the story of a real LI, have a starting girlfriend for early scenes, or just have one LI who is willing to go all the way quickly because that LI is an Unrequited Love (see above) and already prepared to be with the MC. A problem with side girls is several fold. One, they often are liked by the players and they will want more of the character. Two, they are stealing time from actual LIs and the actual plot. Three, they often make the MC seem pathetic, hiring a whore, or hooking up at a bar, or make him seem uncaring about cheating on the existing LIs. None of which fits with a harem. There is no shortage of LIs in a harem, use one for the early scenes. It isn’t hard.
  • Pregnancy: Pregnancy can add a lot to a harem game. If you don’t want to have this, be upfront about it and avoid a few pitfalls that can arise when not having it. Remember that none of the characters are real. No character will get pregnant from a creampie unless you code it to happen. Avoid forced pull outs and condoms, either make them a player choice or don’t have them. Avoid the MC and LIs from unilaterally deciding to get the morning after pill. Either make it a player choice or don’t have it mentioned at all and simply don’t have the character get pregnant.
  • Incest: Incest is a common fetish to attach to the harem genre. They go together like peanut butter and jelly. Siblings and parents can make great LIs, they can have a starting emotional bond and loyalty to the MC and can be the first character the MC meets when the story starts. Siblings, especially sisters, should always be virgins whenever possible. If you have an older MC (in his thirties for example), then siblings of a similar age might not be virgins. Maybe a sister is even allowing the MC to have a niece to add to the harem, so of course the sister isn’t a virgin if she had a daughter. But this is the exception. A trade off. The player has traded a sister’s virginity to add a whole new LI to the story, that is a reasonable trade. But even here, having preestablished incest between the MC and a sister can give the MC a niece for the harem and still maintain that the MC took the sister’s virginity in the past. If a mother will be added to the harem, then it should follow the rules of Netori above. Or even have the father simply be dead or already divorced from the mother. If you add incest to a game set in the modern era especially then you are already tossing realism out of the setting, so don’t be afraid to push that and make as many family members virgins as possible. Let alone when you step into a harem and other genres like sci-fi and fantasy. Incest is wincest after all.
  • Romance/Corruption: Romance is often a staple of the harem genre, but corruption can also be used to form the harem. This comes down to the type of story you want, and either can work, you should simply be honest about which type of harem you are making and remember the other harem guidelines.
  • Living Arrangements: This can be a point of contention for some. Do all the LIs have to live in the same house as the MC? I would say, it depends. If possible, yes. The ending of a harem game (if not before then even) should involve all the LIs being together with the MC in one home, or at least in very close proximity, such as a single neighborhood or property. However, what if your harem is set in a fantasy world and one of the harem members is a queen, another is a demon ruler in hell, while the last is an angel in heaven? Well, lucky that in a fantasy setting the MC could teleport to those different locations, the LIs could come to him at least once a week, or they could live with him most of the time and return to their realms when needed. And this is just a few simple solutions. It is the same in any setting. A modern setting the LIs could work from home or in the city they live in with the MC, it could even be a plot point of the LI having to get transferred to the new city. In sci-fi there are ships that can travel faster than light, so even if LIs live on different planets and the MC is a space pirate then he simply has a route he traveled that takes him to all of them and they are devoted to him. That is the key. They can live elsewhere, though that is not ideal, but they should adhere to the guidelines, their loyalty is to the MC.
  • Friends and Non-Love Interest NPCs: This will cover non-antagonist NPCs. This is also a point of contention. Friends can be tricky. They take screen time away from LIs and often add very little that couldn’t have been done by a LI. They can also be seen as rivals and developers often feel a need to give these side characters their “own lives” that the MC has to either see or even facilitate. I have never watched a friend of mine have sex, even when I have given them advice, but often friends in AVNs are used to create needless voyeurism scenes that have no place in a harem game. Assuming a male MC, if he has a friend introduce him to an LI, why couldn’t another LI have been the one doing the introduction? If he has a female NPC as a friend, why isn’t she a LI? Why would a developer create a non-LI character who is integral to the plot when an LI could have filled that role? Whenever you are thinking about adding an NPC, ask a few questions. Could this role be filled with an existing or a new LI? If yes, then do that. Am I adding to my work by creating a new character when an existing character could work? If yes, use an existing one. Am I making a character players will like and want as an LI? If yes, then make that character an LI. Do I really like this character and want to use them for more in the story? If yes, then either make them an LI or even use them in another project late if you like them so much.
  • Drama and Cliffhangers: If you plan to present drama or negative situations in an update in the interest of resolving them or mitigating them in the next release, use caution. Don't present adversity and shit all over the MC in a release without any reprieve, because your supporters, the people who would otherwise be advertising and recommending your games to other people, get all the shit without any of the resolution, for months. You know the full story. The people playing do not, they will stew on the negative and that will become the talking point of the story for months. Cliffhangers are fine, but they should not be used at the cost of the story. Cliffhangers should be things like an unknown knock on the door. A sudden realization that a non-LI NPC has died or gone missing. The phone rings while the MC is with a LI and he ignores it. These add a bit of mystery about the story, but they don't paint the LIs in a negative light. Cliffhangers should never be things like a LI leaving on a date with a guy. A LI revealing they have been working for an enemy all along. A LI leaves the MC waiting once she finds out about other girls. Cliffhangers should not be used to give uncertainty about a LI and her place in the story. You can have events where the LIs are put in interesting situations, but those should be resolved in the same update. Otherwise, players will be put off by it.
  • Antagonists: Villains and rivals can add to the plot. But they need not be sexual in nature. Usually they are destined to lose, that is the nature of stories and especially escapism self-insert power fantasies like a harem story. If they could be redeemed and turned into a LI also that can work, but it should be optional and done rarely. The drama and Netorare sections add more information about ways antagonists can be used in harems.
?The Bible of Harem Game Development?
 
  • Like
Reactions: 3 users

SeveredRealms

Nobody Knows
Staff member
Head-Mod
Game Developer
VIP
VIPplus
Lewd
Apr 23, 2022
1,249
2,828
Age
52
Location
U.S. Fucking. A.
Website
subscribestar.adult
LC COIN
3,012
  • Like
Reactions: 4 users

SeveredRealms

Nobody Knows
Staff member
Head-Mod
Game Developer
VIP
VIPplus
Lewd
Apr 23, 2022
1,249
2,828
Age
52
Location
U.S. Fucking. A.
Website
subscribestar.adult
LC COIN
3,012
I have left Dj's discord JoeTheMc84 but I wanted to let you know your thread here is safe and has nothing to do with anything outside this site. I am sure some of them think crap of me but well I cant take the brigading that goes on in his discord anymore.
 

JoeTheMc84

Lewd
Apr 24, 2022
110
322
LC COIN
71
I have left Dj's discord JoeTheMc84 but I wanted to let you know your thread here is safe and has nothing to do with anything outside this site. I am sure some of them think crap of me but well I cant take the brigading that goes on in his discord anymore.
I understand and I’m sorry to hear that.
 

Naxos

Registered
Apr 24, 2022
6
11
LC COIN
22
Great guide as I've told you before.

As I've said elsewhere and will repeat here of the benefit of others..... one thing to add is LI's should not be locked or tied to other LI's in any way. Don't make me go a route or accept someone I have no interest in, just to unlock some other LI she knows it's just poor form.

Another tip for game devs of any game genre is to include some kind of character guide (even if accessible only from the menu) so when a character is referenced that hasn't been shown or mentioned in a year (real time) is easy to figure out who they mean. Doesn't have to be dynamic guide or anything, just a picture of who they are and how they fit into the story. Really helps and makes vn's more enjoyable when you don't have to spend time trying to figure out who a character is after 6 months of no updates.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 3 users
U

User_101358

Unconfirmed
this is my new post #3

new member iso avn's and games.
first time i've ever seen these type of restrictions in my entire life, is this some type of mental breakdown or some type of Mark Zuckerberg social experiment ??

please like my post or i'm never going to download anything.

LOL, is this some type of mental breakdown or some type of Mark Zuckerberg social experiment ??
 
U

User_101358

Unconfirmed
Great guide as I've told you before.

As I've said elsewhere and will repeat here of the benefit of others..... one thing to add is LI's should not be locked or tied to other LI's in any way. Don't make me go a route or accept someone I have no interest in, just to unlock some other LI she knows it's just poor form.

Another tip for game devs of any game genre is to include some kind of character guide (even if accessible only from the menu) so when a character is referenced that hasn't been shown or mentioned in a year (real time) is easy to figure out who they mean. Doesn't have to be dynamic guide or anything, just a picture of who they are and how they fit into the story. Really helps and makes vn's more enjoyable when you don't have to spend time trying to figure out who a character is after 6 months of no updates.
please like my post, i liked yours
 

Donation drives

Latest Updates page

everything that get donated will go to parceload who is developing the new latest updates page.
Goal
$1,500.00
Earned
$550.00
This donation drive ends in
Donation Drive
Click one of these buttons to initiate donation.
Back
Top Bottom