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Are you ready d00d? Disgaea 5 Complete nails it.

Main ImageDisgaea 5 Complete
Intial Release Date: May 26, 2017
Developers: 
Nippon Ichi Software 
Publishers: 
Nippon Ichi Software, NIS America 
Platforms: Nintendo Switch
Game information was freely provided by IGDB.com

Anyone familiar with me personally knows how much I do enjoy this series since it debuted on the PlayStation 2 (see my previous review for Disgaea 4 A Promise Revisited).

I really like Disgaea’s characters and depth. This series has lead me to have quite a few laughs, while also throwing in tedious leveling up options for your characters and weapons. Once I pick up the game to play, that’s where I am for several hours easily. This is why having Disgaea on a handheld is so great (and dangerous!). Sure the series has seen some releases on handhelds (such as on the DS and Vita), but the screen size was so small. This is why what makes this Switch release so great.

 

For those unfamiliar with the Disgaea series, don’t fret! These games are standalone and only make references to the games or characters in the past, which does not affect gameplay or the story! Usually, the story is set in some variation of demonic Netherworld, where you will interact with other demons. These demons are more silly lighthearted evil instead of the typical dark evil, which make lots of slapstick fun and break the fourth wall occasionally.

 

The battle system is the core element people hear about these games.  Disgaea uses a simple setup found in typical tactical RPGs but builds on top of that. Players get to utilize geo blocks and panels on the stages where they and the enemies have to deal with status effects on the terrain that can cause damage.  Of course, there are also combo attacks, where if the characters are next to each other, that allows characters to team up for attacks and do damage to the enemies. Players also can find themselves lifting and throwing allies and enemies alike while on the map. The object of the battle is to wipe all the enemies off the map, while also getting to collect items you may find while navigating the board. Of course, through leveling up characters and the higher calls weapons you equip, these battles will get more over the top and you can eventually see billions of damage being done. After all, with Disgaea games, it’s all about the grind. Your max level is 9999, but you can also reset characters to build up the stats!

Originally released in 2015 on PlayStation 4 as Disgaea: Alliance of Vengeance, this new Nintendo Switch port includes everything: all the scenarios, characters, classes, and other DLC. Disgaea 5 Complete tells a tale of revenge and rebellion. A new and terrible Overlord named Void Dark seeks to enslave the countless Netherworlds, however, one young demon has stood to end his reign and his name is Killia. You lead Killia and his army of rebels on their path to vengeance.

Each episode focuses on revealing a layer of each character’s persona. Each character develops and changes in more than strength as the story unfolds, which is nice to see even for secondary characters. The game points out what its characters motivations are, instead of settling on fixed personalities and traits

The characters themselves in this installment are great. First, you have the main character, Killia. Kilia has a bad-boy persona and a mysterious past that unravels as time goes on. Then there is Red Magnus, one of my personal favorites in this one! He’s the Overlord of Scorching Flame and an over the top musclehead but made me laugh so much. Seraphina is the Overlord of Gorgeous Underworld, who believes all men should serve at her feet. Even the bad guys are interesting, but only have origins that unfold each time you encounter them.

One of the big changes in Disgaea 5 is the redesigned Chara World. This time, the Chara World is a board game-like display with a set number of turns to move your character. When you travel over panels, you can earn stat boosts, items, money, and mana. If you get to the goal, you’ll get to choose a stat boost to add on to what you found during your moves around the board. To access this world is a huge amount of mana, but the payoff can be well worth it.

In battle, Disgaea 5 has added overloads and combo moves. Overloads are moves that belong exclusively to Overlord-class characters. Along with overloads, each Overlord has combo moves they can use in unison with other Overlords. They can wreak havoc together as long as they’re within the range of one another. Fortunately, using a combo move doesn’t use up a turn for both Overlords! These new commands give Overlord type characters that necessary different feel, and you can find a new strategy of battle by trying to take advantage of the combo move set.

The soundtrack is what you would expect from a Disgaea game release. The music is very fitting for the situations of the game. I’ve found myself being a fan of the music from Tenpei Sato because of Disgaea.

Disgaea finds itself curving towards anime memes and archetypes. This is way more obvious in the game’s episode previews you see after completing a chapter in the game. This is a staple in the Disgaea franchise as they treat each story chapter as an episode of a show. Each preview relates to a different anime type. Anime fans may find these episodes more hysterical. Many of them center around Seraphina and her belief that every man is in love with her. Characters are often thrust into popular tropes, like childhood friend in love, or two characters’ rivalry to be the best. These are a fun highlight of the series.

Besides character cut scenes, you can also get skits between the characters after major developments. These scenes are usually short and add nothing further to the story. They are just added humor between the characters.

Overall, Disgaea 5 is an RPG must have (especially for those who love Disgaea). The story is fun, quirky, and well-told. Having fun over the top characters are something this series is known for, and this entry does not disappoint! The game has plenty of replay value (as you can sink in hundreds of hours into these games!). People who aren’t familiar with the series can still pick up and play this game without fear of not understanding (as Disgaea games are usually standalone games). It’s a must-have game and is available for Playstation 4 and was recently released on the Switch! I prefer the Switch version so I can play it on the go and it just feels so much better on a handheld console! This game alone was one of my favorite games that came out in 2015 and I enjoyed it enough to add it to my Switch library! My only gripe is there still isn’t any mid battle save. I really would like to see this option added in future releases due to if your system is running out of power or you have to leave in the middle of a battle. Those can be difficult and tedious to have to go through again just because you had to stop playing abruptly.

Pros:
  • Fun, well-told Story
  • Hundreds of hours of Replay
  • A great addition to the Disgaea franchise
  • Lots of content including the DLC (Switch Version)
Cons:
  • No mid battle saves (Please add this NIS)
  • Is a very niche series
  • Not too much of a change in the existing Disgaea format
Graphics Pixl Score 4 4
Story Pixl Score 4 4
Sound Pixl Score 4 4
Controls Pixl Score 5 5
Fun Factor Pixl Score 4 4.5