Disgaea 5 is the first game I’ve played from the series. I came into the game with zero expectations and not quite knowing what I was getting myself into. I hope I can help you decide if this game is for you as well!

Gameplay

There are a few games that come to mind that are similar to Disgaea 5; those being:

  • Fire Emblem
  • Pokemon Conquest
  • Final Fantasy Tactics

However, just as this game is similar, it’s also completely different. Like the examples, Disgaea’s combat is played out on a grid. The number of spaces you can move at once is based on your speed stat. The combat is also turn based where executing attacks adjacent to allies trigger combos. The usual turn based stuff. However, Disgaea has a few additional mechanics that make it unlike the other grid based games. You can throw your allies. This sounds weird, but makes from some serious strategy. You can stack your characters on top of each other to form a tower and attack or throw allies to strategic places on the map.

Another interesting combat mechanic is magichange. It took me a while to get my head wrapped around how monster characters act differently from humans, but I think I got it. Monsters can ‘magichange’ into weapons for human characters. This give stat boosts and offer advantages. I could go on for at least 10 chapters on Disgaea combat, but I think you get the idea.

Graphics/Visuals/Audio

The entire game is in 2D. Normally, this would put me a bit off of a game that’s roughly $50 but the quality is fantastic. The sprites have delightful/badass/interesting animations for all of their actions. The colors are brilliant and never dull. Illustrations are used during conversation and they look straight out of an anime; very well illustrated and interesting concepts. Some of the conversations within your safe zone can be a bit dull since they are the only part of the game that is not voice acted and dulled down character cards are used in place of the full models, but it doesn’t bother me much.

The character voices are surprisingly good when using the English translation. The original Japanese reading is, ofcourse, brilliant. Red Magnus sounds just like Nappa from DBZ so you’ll get a kick out of that. All the animation sounds are great and I have no complaints there, except for the soundtrack. The song that plays in the safe-zone is utterly dreadful. I would mute the background music but then I can’t hear the combat music. The safe-zone music sounds as if it was sung by a tone-deaf child. It’s my only complaint about this game really.

Story/Writing

The writing for Disgaea 5 is brilliant. I often find myself laughing out loud from the hilarious conversations. I make sure to read everything and never miss a chance at hearing an exchange. Especially when the Prinnies talk….dood.

I’m only a couple of hours into the game so I don’t have much to say about the story. There is a baddy called “Void Dark” and it’s your collective interest to take him out. I very much expect this just to be an underlying story to a much grander plot but we’ll see.

Content

Disgaea 5 has an extreme amount of content. I mean extreme. Like…Xtreme. There are no limits to how you can choose to approach this game. Here are a few things you can play with:

  • Character classes/subclasses
  • Items/Item customization (Innocents)
  • Character hiring/customization
  • Pass Bills (Like Animal Crossing)
  • Complete skill customization

These are just a few things, and each thing has multiple levels of complexity that I can’t even begin to get into here. If you’re crazy about stats and making the perfect team, this will scratch that itch.

I would have to say this game is amazing so far. I’ve loved every minute and plan on pooring plenty of time into all it has to offer outside of the main storyline. I’d have to say this games’ only drawback… is it’s abundance of content. Hear me out.

This is one of those games where there is literally so much to do, it’s very easy to be overwhelmed and not give it a chance. But the game does a great job of easing you into it. Disgaea is very self aware of it’s complexity and you can easily have different parts of the game explained to you anytime you’d like. This is very nice for people like me getting into the franchise and have only scratched the surface of what this game offers.

Well that’s it! I hope you learned something and will give the game a try. Did I mention there’s a free demo on the Playstation Store!? And all the progress you make in the demo apparently carries over to the full game so you have nothing to lose!

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