Disgaea 2: Cursed Memories

Review

posted 8/29/2006 by Matt Mirkovich
other articles by Matt Mirkovich
One Page Platforms: PS2
It’s been a good three years since the last Disgaea came out, and after sinking hundreds of hours in to it, I’ve grown a might bored. I can only handle killing Baal so many times before I need something new. Disgaea 2: Cursed Memories offers just that, a few new additions, a few new characters, a new story, and new classes, and a sequel stigma that it just cannot shake. For what it’s worth, this is almost the same game you played back in 2003, the same game I review three years ago and loved. If this really were the same game then it managed to withstand the test of time since I enjoy this game greatly, but I just wish for a little bit more, something that NIS should have been able to deliver after having me wait three years for this sequel.
 
Disgaea 2 follows the story of a young man named Adell, who is the only human left in the town of Veldime which has fallen under the curse of the overlord Zenon. This curse robs people of their conscience, memories, and humanity. With time running short Adell and his family attempt to summon Zenon but wind up with his daughter, Rozalin who has lived her entire life in the lap of luxury, unaware of the things going on outside her home. With this little screw up Adell is now charged with getting Rozalin home to her father. The story itself has its fair share of comedy and drama, has a few old friends from other NIS titles and features nine endings to find.
 
If you’re looking for slick detailed graphics then either you don’t know what Disgaea is or who Nippon Ichi is, or you just really haven’t been paying attention. 2-D sprites, now and forever (I hope not), this game has 2-D sprites coming out of every ounce of its existence. This would be all well and good if they looked nice, like say Guilty Gear or even Stella Deus, but sadly they do not; they are short, stubby and look like they have been zoomed in on, kind of like when you stretch a wall paper in Windows. The character design on the other hand is wonderful, each of the characters has a unique look which really adds to the overall style that this game oozes. The game also manages to cram a lot of these sprites on screen as you can be fighting up to thirty enemies at a time. Couple that with massive spell effects and an absolute lack of slowdown and you’ll quickly forget why the game looks the way it does.
 
The audio master behind the first Disgaea, Tenpei Sato is back for Cursed Memories and he did a mighty fine job in remixing a few tracks from the previous Disgaea including an 8-bit rendition of Lord Laharl’s Hymn. The rest of the original music stands as a hybrid between techno, synthesized classical (that’s quite honestly the best description I can muster), and a little bit of swing type music. A lot of the music suites the mood of this game perfectly, giving specific characters theme songs to accentuate their importance in the Disgaea world, it’s also highly energetic which I think works out well for this game, because for all the sobering moments this title offers there are twice as many nuggets of comedy. The game also features an English audio track and a Japanese audio track for those who like a choice in their voice actors.
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