For those who don't know, dating sims are relationship simulation games.
Generally, your objective is to talk to a character so that you can get to know them, romance them and eventually date them.
By smell you can find yourself another yeti to love.
Traditionally the setting for many of these games are high school but some take on a more fantasy focus and over time, these games have branched out quite a bit.
There is quite a lot of imagination put in some of these games.
In fact, many romance games are Visual Novels, which is a much different game style.
(See for example, the difference between the series, which is very close to a Visual Novel style of gameplay, and the DOA Xtreme series, which is the closest thing to a true Dating Sim with mass-market appeal in the US.) If the game plays out like a Choose Your Own Adventure, that's a Visual Novel.