By Sparky_Buzzsaw 0 Comments
Sorry it's taken me so long to get a new one of these posted, but between Dead Island and Forza 4, I've been a zombie-killin', Nova SS drivin' fool. Anyways, let's jump in. Today we're talking about the fifth episode of Disgaea 4, as well as the wonders and joys of level 5-2.
Wherein Women and Children Are Shit Upon By a Grumpy Werewolf
Let's get something clear right off the bat. I don't like sexism in games, unless it's done in either a tongue-in-cheek fashion or that it's sublimely ridiculous. Disgaea 4 is definitely in the latter category. The women of the game, namely Desco and Fuka (up to this point, anyways), are love-obsessed girly girls who just happen to want to either rule the Underworld (Fuka) or destroy do-gooders (Desco). It's a dichotomy that is all at once a cliche of anime and sort of bizarrely lovable. I'm not going to suddenly claim I enjoy the stories of any of the Disgaea games or very many of the characters, but when Fenrich starts laying on the verbal abuse and threats to Fuka, Desco, and to a lesser extent, Emizel, this game becomes a great deal funnier. And why the sudden ferocity in his verbal jabs?
Love, of course.
Not from Fenfen (the nickname given to him by Fuka, much to his horror), of course, but in their anticipation of the great love story between Val and Artina/Volcanus, the Angel of Avarice. Episode 5 is relatively short, and none of the levels pose much of a challenge even in the first playthrough. It's also a good area to gleefully take advantage of a "glitch" the developers have intentionally left in the game. More on that in a while.
Episode 5 has Val and his crew attacking a mid-level boss training area. This training area, though, strangely resembles an abandoned amusement park. Val bemoans the fall and laziness of demons, exemplified in how the former area has now become a joke of its former self. They easily mop the floor with some generic mid-level baddies. Val feels slightly uncomfortable about this, realizing that something isn't quite right. The enemies are far too weak, but this mystery is shuffled aside for later.
Along their path, Fuka and Desco pry (without too much effort) the story of how Val met Artina when he was terrorizing Earth, as a good demon should. Back in those days, Val was still drinking blood, and was enormously powerful (apparently - we never really get to see this, but it's mentioned by Fenrich on several occasions). During a vampire hunt, in the midst of a human war, Artina and Val met. After learning he's a vampire, Artina gently asks him if he needs her blood to survive, and offers it up willingly, as she's a human pure of heart and full of kindness. She talks Val into agreeing that he would not take any other human's blood until he's drank hers. Val is taken aback by her sweet nature and purity, and proclaims that he could not suck her blood until he had well and truly frightened her. This promise becomes incredibly painful for him days later.
Artina, finding an enemy soldier wounded on the battlefield, does the good thing and takes care of him. She is mortally wounded by people from her own side, and as she lay dying, Val visits her. Her only regret is that Val couldn't drink her blood, keeping him from being released from his oaths to her. She dies in his arms.
The group stumbles across Volcanus on a couple of occasions in the area. Her resemblance to Artina is spot-on, despite her apparent newfound love of thievery in the Netherworld. We find out she's out to collect on debts owed to Heaven from the demons, and has been stealing on her own accord. Fenrich, recognizing the angel as a threat and an impediment to Val's rise in power, tricks Val into promising that he'll take down Volcanus if she becomes a threat. Upon their next meeting, Fenrich tells Volcanus that the party has a bounty on their heads worth 10,000,000 HL. She doesn't hesitate and attacks the group, dollar signs flashing in her eyes (so to speak).
As boss fights go, this one was a cakewalk. She's surrounded by Prinnies, which can be lobbed at her or each other to quickly wipe the map clean. A good ranged unit or magician can whittle her HP down to nothing in no time. When Volcanus is defeated, she pulls Val aside for a brief conversation. He lets slip that he once promised someone he would never drink blood again, and she finally recognizes him for who he is, as she is indeed Artina come back to life as an angel. Suddenly, she springs forward, shielding Val and taking a projectile for him. The shooter? Why, it's none other than Warden Axel, that nefarious ne'er-do-well!
And so ends episode V.
Big thanks first and foremost to Drac for pointing out that this glitch is still intact from Disgaea 3.
In Disgaea 3 (and possibly other Disgaea games, though I'm not certain), it was possible to exploit one hell of a leveling glitch. If you pass eight or so "Higher Enemy Level" bills and fought on level 5-2, the enemies would be at level 99, but give experience as though they were much, much higher leveled (which they technically should have been - that's the glitch). A character with a powerful, widespread ranged attack could mop the floor with every creature in minutes, letting you power level up through level 300 with ease. It sound cheap, and it was, but considering that's just the tip of the iceberg in terms of how far you can level in the Disgaea games (level 9999), it merely served as a good start if you planned on doing the post-game stuff.
As it turns out, the developers have left that glitch in Disgaea 4 on purpose, and it happens in the exact same fashion. Pass eight or so "Higher level enemy" bills, save, and jump into 5-2. If all the enemies are at level 99, congrats, and get to killing. If not, just adjust the bill until it's at that level. When the enemies don't give you as many quick levels, you can combine them together and continue power-leveling. It's magically delicious.