With so many sequels across so many platforms, it’s no wonder the Disgaea series is known as a fantastic strategy RPG. The characters make appearances in several of Nippon Ichi’s games and the series has spawned an anime and a manga adaption. But, for someone with no experience with the series, or any strategy RPG for that matter, there might be a few foreign concepts. If you want to know what you’re in for before jumping in, here are a few tips for being the best Overlord you can be.
Keep your team well-rounded
One of the many unique features in the Disgaea series is the ability for the player to build their own team. The main characters can each have their own servants. The player can use mana, which is obtained by defeating enemies, to make more characters. It is important to be aware of the characters you make and who you choose as their mentor. Mentors determine who the servants will fight better beside in battle and their Weapon Mastery levels. Characters made under Laharl are more likely to be proficient with a sword than a character made under Etna.
It’s also important to keep in mind what kind of characters you make. You won’t have many choices in the beginning, but it’s vital to keep your team balanced. Clerics are useful for long-ranged attacks and healing. Warriors and Brawlers are powerhouses and best used for close-ranged combat. Mages are good for attacking enemy element weaknesses. Monster characters have high aptitudes, which increase stats given by items. As more classes are unlocked, others will become obsolete, so pay attention to what each class has to offer.
Obey Weapon Mastery
Once you create a character, you’ll see that each weapon type has a grade next it. These indicate how much experience your weapons will receive.
- S = 25-35 Points
- A = 20-24 Points
- B = 15-19 Points
- C = 10-14 Points
- D = 5- 9 Points
- E = 1- 4 Points
This experience allows characters to learn stronger skills and deal greater damage. While you will be able to increase this rate with Armsmasters specialists found in the Item World later, at the beginning it is much easier to obey the Weapon Mastery levels. Save your Armsmasters for the highest rank Weapon Mastery levels rather than trying to force a weapon type on a character.
Make Use of the Item Worlds
You will be introduced to the Item Worlds pretty early in the game, and, while it seems optional, it is important for boosting your characters’ stats early on so you don’t fall behind later in the game. After a certain point in the story, the enemies get significantly stronger, so utilizing the Item Worlds will eliminate hours of grinding to get back up to the right level.
Item Worlds are used to do two things: increase the power of your items and to defeat Specialists. Each level within an Item World that you defeat will give the item a small amount of power. These maps are designed to be long and tedious, so it’s important to note that you cannot level an Item World without a Mr. Gency’s Exit item. You will obtain one free Mr. Gency Exit, but the rest you have to get from Item Generals, Item Kings, or an Item God. These units will spawn on floors 10, 20, 40, 50, 70, and 80, or floors 30, 60, and 90, or floor 100, respectively.
Specialists add to an item’s power when defeated. There are several types of Specialists and each one adds to a different aspect of the item. A Specialist can add stat bonuses, resistance, status effects, or increases to what an item’s user gains upon a kill. Once defeated, a Specialist moves on to a different Item World.
You have limited characters on the field
You can only have so many characters you can use on each map, so choose wisely. Always check the enemies before choosing your characters to make sure you have someone for every enemy’s weakness. While this isn’t completely necessary, it makes the game much easier and gives you the little boost you need for boss fights.
Group Your Units
A huge element of the Disgaea series is strategy. Without one, the game will be very hard to play, let alone beat. A simple strategy you can employ is to group your units. In battle, characters standing next to characters that they have a higher compatibility with can perform team attacks. Team attacks deal more damage than regular attacks and are important to use. These attacks can use up to four characters. Keep in mind, however, enemies can perform these attacks too, so be mindful of your surroundings.
In addition to team attacks, grouping your units allow for less flank attacks during enemy turns. A back attack or flank attack will do more damage to your characters, so by having more units grouped together, there’s less of a chance for extra damage. It is better to not employ this strategy with mages and clerics, however. They are put to much better use in the back, away from the fighting.
I hope these tips help you on your way to become the most powerful Overlord ever. Remember, the game is always about having fun and you’ll learn the basics while you go. None of these rules are set in stone and can be adjusted to your style of play very easily. Good luck!