An observation/criticism that gets thrown at games, not just AIFs but mainstream games as well, is that relationships are improved by giving characters a lot of presents. It amounts to buy stuff, give stuff, earn love.
So in the spirit of the present giving season: what system works best for earning affection? what can be improved? what difficulties might an author have to worry about? any games that have done this particularly well?
This thread is only talking about games that have some type of affection system (in AIF that would be any stat that you need to build up to improve the relationship and likely get to sex). Some games skip this, either the characters are into each other from the get go or some other approach is used, but we're not comparing the different models, I'm asking if there is an affection model and the player needs to improve their relationship, what works best?
To narrow it down I think AIFs in this category have primarily used two models (not talking about quality here, just category):
Get one thing and have sex: This can amount to, 'You found my jacket hidden in the closet, let's have sex' to 'You know I'd love to have sex with you, but I have to find my laptop first or my boss is going to kill me'.
On the mainstream game front: Skyrim has something similar. If you have a certain necklace than characters are willing to marry you. Some characters may need one thing done first, but at most it amount to an action and an item.
Get multiple things to improve relationship, then have sex: This can either be the continual giving of gifts or, as the Pervert Action series does, interactions/conversations. Characters may have preferences for certain types of presents/behaviors.
I've never played it, but I hear that the Fable series uses something like this.