Throughout the nineties, bishōjo games underwent an evolution from being one of the most technologically demanding types of games (because their detailed 2D graphics required a large amount of storage space by the standards of early computers) to one of the least (they rarely use 3D graphics).
Faced with the threat of being forcibly censored out of existence by the government, in 1992 the bishōjo game industry formed the Computer Software Rinri Kikō (meaning "Ethics Organization for Computer Software", and often abbreviated EOCS or Sofu-rin), setting industry guidelines for acceptable content and packaging.
This organization tamed down the most objectionable content in the "wild west" of the 1980s.
Bishōjo games are similar to Choose Your Own Adventure books in the way of narrative, in which the game tells a story but the player may make choices to change how the story flows. Bishōjo games began to appear in Japan in the beginning days of personal computers.
The first bishōjo game commercialized in Japan appeared in 1982 as Night Life by Koei.
In the early nineties the atmosphere in Japan became more and more hostile towards bishōjo games.
In 1989 serial killer Tsutomu Miyazaki was arrested and was revealed to be a consumer of lolicon manga, causing widespread opposition to pornographic manga, otaku and anything similar.
Released in 1994 by Konami who was on the verge of bankruptcy, the platonic dating sim becoming the first major Bishojo game since Koei's release of Night Life. While the title was another eroge title targeted at males for its sexual content, the players began to identify with the protagonist and the idea overcoming "the emotional trials and tribulations of pure love." A late Play Station 2 port removed the sexual content and sold better than the original leading eventually to two anime adaptations. Dōkyūsei, whose gameplay focused on meeting girls and seducing them, established the standard conventions of the dating simulation genre.
Tokimeki Memorial, the first dating sim, featured good graphics, full voice acting, and a role-playing game-like gameplay system.
Prior to 1985, girls were generally drawn either as normally proportioned adults or super deformed children.
Some games involved elements of force and brutality.
Both were first released on the PC with erotic scenes, which were subsequently removed in their console ports.