Disgaea 5 Complete – Nintendo Switch (Review)
Thanks to NIS America for providing the product for review.
Disgaea 5 Complete is a tactical based strategy RPG for the Nintendo Switch. It previously graced the PS4 however the Nintendo Switch version includes all 8 bonus scenarios, four of the fan favorite characters, and three classes that were all part of the DLC for the PS4 release: Disgaea 5: Alliance of Vengence. This really is the complete version, chocked full of great RPG content!
Disgaea 5 Complete releases May 23rd which seems like a perfect time for gamers. With many Switch fans transitioning from Breath of the Wild, and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Disgaea 5 Complete is the perfect fit to solve that craving for RPG gaming.
This game grabs your attention immediately from the start with a very artistic and vibrant style, intriguing characters, atmospheric music, and compelling RPG combat. The story itself is over the top, which is common for fantasy RPG’s like this.
For starters, a Demon Emperor named Void Dark along with his army (The Lost) has taken over numerous “Netherworlds” which has forced the leaders of these areas (Overlords) to surrender. The job of these Overlords was to keep evil at bay, and maintain the balance of the Netherworlds.
With the setup of the story almost complete, there has to be something else right? Yes. A young demon named Killia who is more or less unknown, swore to get revenge on Void Dark and help defeat the army to help save the Netherworlds. Aside from his vow to fight the evil, he became a servant of Princess Overlord Seraphina. Surprisingly he had saved her life during a previous encounter and has agreed to accompany her to complete the overthrow of Void Dark.
With the story set, it has made for a very classic battle of good vs. evil, but with a bit of a twist! As it should be.
The battle mechanics in game are fairly typical for any RPG fan but there are a few twists added which some gamers may not know about. When you choose Attack, your unit doesn’t automatically attack. Instead, you have to go on to choose Execute to start the command. This allows you to setup multiple units for attack and work together for team attacks, which deal a ton more damage… and look really cool too.
Build Your Units
There is a lot of depth here, as in most RPG’s. You can visit the recruiter to hire units to fight with you and easily set the units class, stats, and even color to easily distinguish. The Squad Shop is to create squads of units, which is very beneficial during battle sequences. Leveling up squads also exists, so it’s not just a group mode. Creating squads actually is quite a useful option and you’ll want to spend some time thinking about who you want working together in battle.
There are “stat quests” as I lazily call it…or an area called the Chara World which exists within each character. You can clear these areas to grind up stats passed the norm. You can also grind up stats for your items by visiting the “Item World”. Here you’ll simply be engaging in short battles to strengthen your items. I like how you are able to grind up specifically your character and items separately, allowing you greater customization over your units and how battles may play out.
There is also what’s called “Free Customization” a mode where you unlock stages and characters. Even a cheat shop exists which you can use to weaken enemy strength and modify the EXP earned! Although I think a first play through of this game should avoid such options, going back at a later time and customizing things so freely does add in a ton of replay value.
You’re able to also customize and “decorate” your Netherworld with the in-game editor and a Map editor is also included which you can share by uploading.
The game offers up the ability to send units on research and discovery missions. During this time the units are not available to battle of course, but when they arrive back you could be in store for some great rewards.
There is also an official quest shop which you can venture out to perhaps find new character classes, items, and much more.
Crafting is also a minor part of Disagea 5 Complete via the Curry Shop. Here you have the ability to use items to make all sorts of unique Curry, which can give you boosts albeit temporary.
Lastly regarding teams, you can actually interrogate enemies you capture in battle. By doing so, you have the chance of them joining your team or even becoming residents within your Netherworld! Propoganda at it’s finest.
Presentation / Visuals
The overall presentation of Disgaea 5 Complete is top notch with great aesthetics. It’s clean and has a nice art style which fits well within the overall story and concept of the game.
There is quite a bit of voice acting and commentary throughout mixed with occasional text dialogue. The voice acting itself is a bit mixed with some characters coming across much better than others. This may break the immersion briefly for some but I didn’t find it to be much of an issue.
The script and writing is quite good and the developers did a great job at instantly giving the main characters tons of personality from the very start.
The graphics are polished and the animations are fair overall. Some things that stood out are the specific animations during battle, especially when using team attacks. The game can make you laugh out loud at times just in the animations alone. IE: one team attack had Princess Seraphina picking up another friendly unit and bashing the friendly onto the enemy like it was some sort of pillow fight. This actually shows the game has a good sense of humor and charm. It doesn’t need to take itself seriously the entire time.
This game offers up a lot of content and hours and hours of gaming. It did feel a bit slow at the start, even getting into the tutorial/prologue. I realize this is common with many RPG’s however it did feel like there was a bit of extra hand holding early on that might be a bit unnecessary.
Overall, the game is highly polished and offers up boat loads of RPG gaming goodness that will keep you going back again and again. The Nintendo Switch helps make this game even more accessible because of the hardware. Playing in tabletop mode with split joy-cons is very comfortable, although some text is a bit harder to read. Handheld mode is also a great option, but I did find myself enjoying even more while playing on the big screen. If you’re a fan of fantasy RPG’s with a modern style, brash and quirky story, interesting characters, and unique combat; this game is right up your alley!