|System: PS Vita|
|Dev: Nippon Ichi|
|Pub: Nippon Ichi|
|Release: April 2012|
|Screen Resolution: 544p||Alcohol Reference, Mild Fantasy Violence, Mild Language, Mild Suggestive Themes|
by Angelo M. D’Argenio
In this handheld generation, we are starting to see handheld ports of games that include more features than their console counterparts. Fighting games are coming to the PS Vita with new characters and expanded modes. Shooters are coming with more guns or classes. Even action games are putting in things like exclusive costumes and special stages in their portable versions. These "Vita-makes" have annoyed some gamers who believe their console versions shouldn't have reduced content just because they want to play it on the big screen. And it's understandable that you wouldn't want to buy a game like Street Fighter X Tekken twice just to be able to play with the entire roster. What about older games, though? Is it cool if they get more powerful portable remakes? Disgaea 3: Absence of Detention dares to ask that very question.
Absence of Detention is the upcoming Vita release of Disgaea 3: Absence of Justice. However, Disgaea 4 has already been released, so most people have already put in their requisite hundreds of hours into this addictive turn-based strategy RPG. When Absence of Justice first came out on the PS3, Nippon Ichi Software came out with near unheard of DLC support. Players were able to download additional characters, additional bosses, additional levels, and more.
Absence of Detention will include all of the DLC for the PS3 version of the game. This includes the Raspberyl chapters—which are basically like an extra half of a game, and half of a Disgaea game is like 70 hours if you're looking to play it completely. This also includes Reyva and Gig from Nippon Ichi's previous game: Soul Nomad, and the Class World Command Attack mode which has you battling against other players for quick completion of levels.
However, that's not all that this portable remake of the game will give you. The game will also feature "new character stories, new systems, new attack levels, new bosses," and more. For example, Toro and Kuro, the PlayStation Network mascots, will be available as characters in the game.
The game will also come with a brand new gameplay system called Honor Quotient. This system uses the PlayStation Vita's GPS data to increase the amount of experience you receive. The more you travel, the more of an experience boost you get, so make sure to take your PS Vita on every trip.
The game can now be controlled with both the Vita's touchscreen and the Vita's rear touch panel. This makes commanding your units incredibly easy. Much like Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon before it, Disgaea 3: Absence of Detention just proves that strategy games are meant to be played with a touch interface.
Tera level spells from previous Disgaea games return, adding yet another level of complexity to the game. You will be able to train your mages to learn these spells and spread them around to all of your troops.
The story even has new chapters as well. Four new scenarios have been added to the game, each portraying a different main character as the hero. This also makes the game more non-linear than it once was, which is impressive for a Nippon Ichi game considering they are already designed to keep you playing for hours in side dungeons.
The final addition comes in the form of two completely new characters. One appears to be some sort of cat-girl while another appears to be some sort of dragon woman. Unfortunately, that is all we know about them so far. How will they meld into the pre-existing story? Who knows?
Aside from all of this, there is a ton of extra content for generic characters. New moves and weapons have been added to the game, as well as new items and armor. New high-res character portraits are added, showcasing more emotions for the main characters. Fuka and Desco from Disgaea 4 are playable in the game, with new moves and abilities based on their own side chapters.
Absence of Detention, when all is said and done, is Disgaea 3 with even more content than it originally had. That's pretty mind-blowing. Nippon Ichi games are notorious for having enough content to keep players playing for hundreds of hours; characters can level up to 9,999! Adding even more content and allowing players to play the game on the road is sure to only reinforce already unhealthy leveling addictions. And that's simply awesome.
Angelo M. D’Argenio
Date: February 23, 2012