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Deviant Art dating sim maker Pacthesis joined the platform in 2007, creating and uploading Flash games to the creative arts-based social network, as well as on game sites like Newgrounds and Kongregate.
That alone doesn’t seem particularly novel; Flash game creators proliferate on Deviant Art.
For many Deviant Art lurkers in the late 2000s and early 2010s, the name Pacthesis brings to mind a specific image: a yellow background with a grumpy-looking coffee cup, the logo of a particular Deviant Art dating sim maker.
And more than that, the name recalls a specific time in these young, female fans’ lives: when they discovered a world of games developed by, and made for, people just like them.
“I found dating games on Newgrounds that I could play right in my browser without downloading anything — at the time this was very appealing to me,” Amy explained.
“There was also something cool about low-budget indie games made by individuals because I could imagine myself making them too.
They are always so sweet and fluffy and some scenes were so funny, that [I] was laughing so hard that my tears would come out.
So every year at this time, I always go back and replay my favorite Pacthesis games as sort of an anniversary tradition.” Searching “Pacthesis” on Twitter and Tumblr still brings up fans waxing nostalgic on the Flash games they played in their youth.
It made sense that she found fans among teenage girls. Her age was something she was open about, as it was listed in her profile from the beginning.
Pacthesis’ Deviant Art profile has over 10 million views; her games have more than 20 million.
As she said during a 2010 Q&A session on Deviant Art: “[I] just made sim dates, posted them one by one on deviant ART, people faved them and my stuff tends to come up when you type in ‘sim dates for girls’ on Google.” Though she opened up about her age, her favorite color, and her preference for coffee, Pacthesis never revealed her full name.
Keeping personal details close to the vest was common during the nascent days of social media, when signing up for a service did not require using a full name.