In defense of romance in games, I think the idea itself has a lot of potential but it hasn't been done properly. When we hear "romance", we expect a bunch of obvious dialogue/quest checks, before reaching the goal threshold with a possible awkward and/or hilarious payoff. Thanks mostly to Bioware for that. Witcher probably did that type of romance best by embracing the silliness of it and turning it into a collecting game of nudes. So much could be done with it though. You could manipulate an NPC into a relationship and/or use a relationship for personal gain, if you want to go an evil route. What would make you feel more like a bastard than romancing someone and then sending them to their death when you need it? What about finding out an NPC has been manipulating you? Characters you romance don't have to be 100% good or sane either. Jealousy, infidelity, breaking of trust and being found out, there are so many things to explore in order to create situations and interactions that are different from the regular PC/NPC stuff. It's a unique relationship type that's worth playing around with.