In essence, Loren is a choose-you-own-adventure storybook, hidden under the facade of a more traditional RPG. The majority of the game is spent reading text, then making a decision based on what is happening around the characters. Some decisions do more harm than good, but it must be said this is not an especially difficult game to get through and there’s not that many diversions away from the main linear plot. It’s possible to move around a world map, but that simply involves clicking on the destination and then occasionally running into a random encounter.
The romance is the only real “game” to be found outside of the combat (I’m getting there), and it, like the skimpy costumes, can be turned off for people with delicate sensibilities. For those that leave it on, every so often there will be a dialogue option that leads to “romance.” Select that often enough and a love heart gauge between the two characters will increase. The interactions become steamier the higher the romance level. Anyone who has played a Dragon Age game (or a Fire Emblem game, only those are generic relationship building exercises rather than romantic) will know the drill. It’s a simpler process here, though, and very little can go wrong once you decide which character will mix with which.
It’s nice the developers did include the option to turn that stuff off so younger people with stricter parents can still play the game, because otherwise it’s very much a family-safe game. Combat is no more than portraits of the hero’s side squared off against portraits of the enemy. When it’s a hero’s turn, select an enemy (or ally, to cast healing magic), select an attack, and off it goes. Some attacks will slow the hero down, meaning it’ll take longer before they can take another turn, and the strategy in this game largely boils down to figuring out the enemy’s weaknesses (not that difficult, as there is a smallish range of abilities to use despite there being an impressively large number of characters to choose between), and then making sure heroes take their turns at the right time.