Disgaea is a game series that has always been near and dear to my heart. Since the first installment, the series has been one that I happily and continually plunge hundreds of hours into. Disgaea 5: Alliance of Vengeance continues that trend. Disgaea 5 is also walks away as my favorite installment in the series. Generally, each installment doesn’t add massive overhauls to the gameplay. However, a new storyline and several smaller tweaks to the combat system merit coming back to the series every single time.
Disgaea is one of my favorite strategy RPG series. Disgaea 5 elevates the addicting gameplay to new levels with some of its new features such as the new Revenge Mode. Revenge Mode brings an interesting addition to the game. Revenge Mode, which allows characters to become empowered over the course of a battle, has the capacity to change the course of a battle single-handedly. This addition brings an amazing dynamic shift to the game and increases the urgency in the middle of battle which is an exhilarating rush.
One of the tenements of the Disgaea franchise is the side content and various ways that the player could improve his or her character. While repeating stages to level up characters is the norm when it comes to improving characters, Disgaea has offered you an abundance of other ways to strengthen your team, and Disgaea 5 takes that even further. From capturing demons and extracting their magical essences to improve my units to entering into an item’s world to improve its strength, at any given moment in Disgaea 5, there are a countless number of things to do outside of the story campaign.
The storyline of Disgaea has always been a charming one. Over the course of the franchise, the scale of the story has drastically increased. In the past, a story would be bound to a single world (known as a netherworld). However, Disgaea 5 follows Killia in what feels like an intergalactic war between different netherworlds. A huge part of the story has always been the humor. While the tone and setting are constantly grim, the banter between characters and their personalities were always hilarious. While this game still does have its light-hearted moments, this particular installment is often more serious than it is not. Personally, I loved that change. The lack of such overbearing humor added a level of importance to every action that happened on-screen. However, it is a change that fans of the series will need to be prepared for.
Overall, Disgaea 5 is an incredible game, and the best installment in the franchise. With such vast gameplay options, I would often spend upwards of 10 hours solely strengthening my team without actually progressing in the story. The only thing that would have made this game any better would have been more additions to the winning formula.