The first revival premiered in 1978 and ran until 1980, the second ran from 1986 until 1989, and the last ran from 1996 until 1999 with a season of reruns following.
Jim Lange hosted The Dating Game for its entire ABC network run and the 19 syndicated editions.
Among early bishōjo adventure games it had a degree of polish that previous games lacked.
It was also the first to have recognizably modern anime-style artwork: its characters had very large eyes and a tiny nose and mouth but were otherwise basically normally proportioned, characteristics which today are found in virtually all bishōjo games.
They form a sizeable fraction of the Japanese market: the most popular have sold over a million copies, and they make up the majority of offline PC games in Japan.
Nevertheless, only a few titles of this sort have been translated or commercialized outside of East Asia.
The title is a pun on the wasei-eigo word hātofuru , as the game features pigeons and other birds as major characters.
In addition to the main games in the series, Hatoful Boyfriend has made transitions into other media: a monthly webcomic was serialized in the anthology Manga Life WIN , several supplementary materials and official dōjin works have been released, and four drama CDs based on the series have been made. A bird, Ryouta, flirting with the player in the original version (top) and the 2014 remake (bottom).
A free demo version of Hatoful made with the Famous Writer engine was released later that year, followed by a full commercial version released on 30 October 2011 at COMITIA 98, and an English version released in February 2012.