Digital: A Love Story is a visual novel set in 1988. The player acts as the protagonist who receives a first computer, the Amie Workbench, and the game is played entirely through its retro interface. Along with the setup instructions a dialer is provided, complete with the authentic dialling sound, which provides a trip to the past and opens up to a world of BBSes, filled with hackers, rambling trekkies and girl called Emilia who posts poetry. Starting from a local BBS the player quickly gains the knowledge to exploit long distance calls, hack into protected environments and download updates and programs to expand the computer's capabilities. Although there are many technical elements to the story, romance in a digital world is a central theme and no technical knowledge is required to play — just the attention to important clues.
Much of the game takes place through messages. The player does not actively need to type these, replies are composed automatically and you can only guess at the content of the messages that are sent out based on other people's answers. The Amie Workbench comes with a basic interface with a programme to play music. Other ones are added later and all of them are accessed through the desktop.