(May contain spoilers, dood)
Prinny: Can I Really Be the Hero?
Gameplay: 7/10 I’m not much of a platforman gamer, so this was a bit of a refreshing game to play. It’s standard go from left to right while dodging/defeating enemies, and not falling to your death in the multiple bottomless pits. The gimmick this game has is the time system. You can do levels in any order, but the later you wait in the day to do them, the harder they get. For example, one level had a jumping section with floating carpets. When I went back an hour later, there were no carpets, and you had to hip-pound your way up statues.
Prinny has one attack — his swords. He can do some rapid slashing on the ground, or a rapid air slash when you jump. You get another attack if you lose all 1000 lives on a playthrough, but I didn’t do that. Get used to button mashing in this game.
Control: 5/10 The worst thing about this game is the jump mechanics. You can’t change direction after you jump, if you went straight up, you’re staying straight up. You have a double jump, which can give a change in direction, but you can’t change after that. Expect to launch yourself into pits often. The hip-pound can be a bit tough to use and aim, and there’s a bit of a pause after you land, so if you barely miss an enemy, expect to get hit. The sword moves speed depends on how fast you can mash Square, which leads to lots of wrist and arm pain. After the final boss (who can’t be stunned for more damage!), my entire body was in pain from button mashing. Also, I never used the dash, but I’m a careful platformer.
Graphics: 8/10 Very pretty 2D graphics, the usual from Nippon Ichi. There’s some bits of 3D in there, and it looks smooth. The characters all have great expressions as well.
Music: 7/10 Also pretty good, though you’ll be sick of hearing the same songs over and over as you keep dying. The voice acting is also good, I’m used to Michelle Ruff as Etna now, and the Prinnies are adorable. There is no Japanese voice option, so if you’re one of them purists, go import. However, some of the enemies (the flying dolls and archers come to mind) have Japanese voices, so I guess they weren’t dubbed.
Localization: 9/10 What you say? Nine out of ten on a NISA localization? Well, it’s Disgaea, and they never screw up Disgaea. I’m sure there’s some missed grammar bit or something in the game, but everything I saw looked fine. I didn’t check who the translator was, though. I was curious too…
Recommendation: If you grew up on NES platformers, this’ll be familiar to you. It’s difficult even on Standard mode, I lost over 400 lives. But I had a blast playing it after getting used to the unwieldy controls and memorization of stages and boss patterns. Play this if you’d like a challenging non-RPG.