Disgaea 7 Marks a Return to Form for the Series That Features Improved Customization and New Battle Options
Even as a long-time fan of the Disgaea series, even I wasn’t impressed with the Western release of Disgaea 6: Defiance of Destiny. It’s strange Switch launch exclusivity and zombie protagonist just didn’t do it for me, so I played Disgaea D2 again. But I degrees, the moment I saw Disgaea 7: Vows of the Virtueless, I could tell that developer Nippon Ichi Software, Inc. went back to the drawing board for this release to take what I love about the series and add systems that make it more palatable in this modern gaming space.
Let’s face it. Many hardcore Disgaea fans don’t have the time that we used to sink hours upon hours into the Disgaea series like we used to. On the other hand, potential new players hearing that this series can be grindy could be a significant turn-off. As sound and deep as the systems of this series are, it really needs to evolve with the times to be palatable to fans and newcomers.
So let’s start with the visual overhaul. I always liked the retro graphics, but this entry seems to have fun with the new 3D presentation. This shows further during the mega battles that can take place. Further, the cast of new and returning characters return with their over-the-top animations.
I believe that this game was made with all players in mind. A new auto-battle system allows players to level grind without the constraints of time sitting in front of your screen. I also find that the Hinomoto storyline sells an authentic Disgaea experience outside of yet another gothic Netherworld storyline. The story is being heavily marketed, and the cast appears to be one that can handle the delivery of humor and plot-progressing story beats.
Listen, I’m mostly excited about the back-to-basics approach to this battle system. There are plenty of new abilities and environments to navigate, but keeping the core systems here is what’s important. Leveling up weapons and classes as you build your party is nice to see, but these systems have also been streamlined to make everything seamless as you play.
There’s a lot riding on this release and a lot that can go wrong here in the West. I think the game’s Japanese audience understands the series, but here in the West, we mostly only hear about the zaniness of the characters and the grindy gameplay systems. Okay, sure, that’s part of it, but I hope that Disgaea 7: Vows of the Virtueless has what it takes to make this series a bit more. Its SRPG elements, character customization, gear options, and overall party management options are some of the best in the genre.
I’m looking forward to seeing if the English localization can deliver that experience to Western players. There is a hell of a lot of weapon descriptions to translate, so good luck, NIS America.
Disgaea 7: Vows of the Virtueless is coming to PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Nintendo Switch, and PC via Steam on October 3, 2023.
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