Disgaea 5 Is In Pre-Production, Fans Vote For Their Favorite NIS Games

By Sunjun . July 15, 2013 . 5:20pm

Nippon Ichi Software CEO Sohei Niikawa recently told Dengeki Online that the scenario of Disgaea 5 is currently in its preparation stage. Although the game is only in the early stages, he intends for it to surpass the first Disgaea.


This comes after the results of a survey by Dengeki in which fans voted for their favorite NIS games, excluding ports. The top 15 games are:


1. Disgaea

2. Disgaea 4

3. Disgaea 2

4. Disgaea D2

5. Soul Nomad & the World Eaters

6. Disgaea 3

7. Phantom Brave

8. Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure

8. Prinny 2: Dawn of Operation Panties, Dood!

8. Prinny: Can I Really Be the Hero?

11. Criminal Girls

12. Z.H.P. Unlosing Ranger vs. Darkdeath Evilman

13. Makai Kingdom

14. The Guided Fate Paradox

15. Little Princess: The Puppet Princess of Marl Kingdom 2


Niikawa stated that he will use these results as a reference, and if he was to make a Disgaea 4 D2, he would hope surpasses the original Disgaea 4.


Also, Niikawa added that he is happy that the Hayarigami horror mystery series still has a strong fanbase (the first Hayarigami ranked #16).


Along with that series, he will consider turning standalone games in the top 15 into series, Niikawa said.


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  • arkadot

    Oh man Soul Nomad sequel, come on!

  • The latest Disgaea main character is a demon-vampire who loves and has passion for sardines. Hope the next one has his or her own memorable/trademark gimmick.

    • Barrylocke89

      I can’t speak on Disgaea specifically (I only played disgaea 2) but I will say that trademark gimmicks lose their luster if they are overused. I remember that being the difference between the characters in Tales of Symphonia and when they returned in Tales of Symphonia 2 for instance.

  • AlteisenX

    Dang. ZHP is so low! I love that game, it’s right up there with Disgaea 1 for me. Sure there’s gameplay flaws, but damn did it ever bring back that charm and humour from Disgaea 1. I don’t understand how Disgaea 2 is so high, I found it rather bland and the characters my least favourite, but most surprising to me is Soul Nomad being so high. I figured people wouldn’t enjoy it due to the weird mapping style, though I’ll admit I loved the music. Surprised Makai Kingdom isn’t higher either… Really weird list to me. Not saying its bad or good, just… weird and unexpected haha.

    • AlteisenX

      Would really like to see one of those Hayarigami games over here, I have no idea what it is, but mystery games are awesome!

    • AkuLord3

      I love Soul Nomad, the mapping wasn’t weird at all and unlike what you think i thought Disgaea 2 was good, i really don’t get the dislike people have for the characters in it but yeah everyone has different opinions so eh.

      • AlteisenX

        I find Tink on the same level as Excalibur from Soul Eater personally.

  • Mister_Nep

    I approve of those first three on the list. Definitely my top favorite in the series so I’m glad I’m not the only one who feels that way.

  • AkuLord3

    Disgaea 5, no surprise whenever it happens i’m excited. I’m surprised and happy how high Soul Nomad is, since its one of my big favs from Nippon Ichi…so that’s good. Though i’m sad how low Makai Kingdom is…yeah it wasn’t the GREATEST game but the gameplay elements were fun and so was the story and characters but ehh oh well ;w;

  • DesmaX

    ooooh, nice to see Soul Nomad so high. Hopefully they at least make a sequel for it.

    Kinda sad by how low ZHP and GFP were on the list… But at least it’s there. I just want to see more of that rogue-like gloryness

    • Sergio Briceño

      Yeah, ZHP maybe because both tried to be more different (although similar to each other). But I agree with everything you said.

    • chibidw

      I think the whole “brutalizes you if you put the PSP into sleep mode” may have been a turn off for a lot of people, especially when some of the dungeons were obscenely long.

      Fortunately the game doesn’t detect Vita’s sleep mode, but by this point the damage is done.

    • Shady Shariest

      GFP is a new-ish game, isn’t it? Basing on that it has a reasonable slot on the list :)

  • Spirate

    Looks like we now know why Criminal Girls is making a return.

    Good list overall; surprised that Soul Nomad is so high, considering it’s their only non-Disgaea SRPG of the past decade not to get an up-port of any kind.

    Also looks like Z.H.P might not be as niche as Niikawa may have thought.

    • Warboss Aohd

      it woz also da most serious……..an’ personally i fink it’s da best written.

  • Duc PC-QB

    Very nice but atm Im just begging for Soul Nomad 2

  • Cerzel

    Never thought Soul Nomad would be that popular, but I’m not complaining; it’s my favourite NIS game. Maybe someday we’ll see more of Gig and Revya.

  • ivanchu77

    Holy crap, i didn´t expect Soul nomad to be that high on the list, even beating a disgaea O_O

    Glad to see Phantom brave is high on the list too.

  • endril

    Disgaea 2 above 3? I thought 2 was the least stellar of the series personally…

    • burnfist23

      Disgaea 2 has always been a very big fan favorite in Japan compared to the US were the opinion has been more polarized. From what I’ve read from the male character polls (Where Axel and Adell ranked 3rd and 4th respectively), a lot of it may be the concept of family. How Adell is willing to fight for the people he calls family despite not being biologically related and in DHD how Axel is willing to risk his reputation for the sake of his brother. On top of that, there’s also Rozalin slowly opening to everyone. Personally, I do agree Disgaea 3 was better, especially in the case of it’s villain (D2 had one of the most disappointing villains I’ve ever seen in a game while D3 had the best villain in the series).

    • Kevadu

      Disgaea 2 is my favorite in the series, honestly. It actually had more going on in the story than just wacky humor (which is not to say that it didn’t have wacky humor).

    • Andres Pena

      I really didn’t like D3’s cast, story was meh, the only character I liked was raspberyl. I understand why Disgaea 2 was soo high up i really liked adell and rozy and the whole adell trying to run away or deny that he was a demon thing, but thats just me..also the story was good.

  • Solomon_Kano

    8. Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure

    8. Prinny 2: Dawn of Operation Panties, Dood!

    8. Prinny: Can I Really Be the Hero?

    Few 8’s too many.

  • I personally thought disgaea 2 3 and 4 were all inferior to disgaea so i doubt they will be able to make disgaea 5 better then the first, as for the poll im uite happy to see rhapsody in there i always thought that game never got the attention it deserved

    • Tiredman

      Agreed on disgaea. The characters in that game just oozed charm and being interesting. Voice actors as well were just over the top and each voice just fit every character to a tee. Oh, and horse wiener zombie.

    • puchinri

      I know, right? Rhapsody deserves a lot more love. I’m glad it saw more love in Japan and wish it had seen that in other regions. I hope it’ll see more love again one day (another spiritual successor since it does have a direct/spiritual sequel with La Pucelle).

    • Sardorim

      As a game? No, Disgaea is vastly inferior to the later games. Now you could argue story but gameplay and content? Disgaea cannot compete with the later entries. That and Disgaea 4 looks and runs far better than Disgaea anyway and actually has quite a bit of post game things to do in comparison.

      • Opinions, you might have liked the changes in gameplay in the later series I didn’t, to each their own

  • ReidHershel

    1. Of course
    2. Not surprising, closest feel to original.
    3. Wow, 2 was my 2nd favorite, glad to know it has more love in Japan than here.
    4. Can’t wait.

    5. Never played this, surprised its this high though.
    6. I loved Disgaea 3, but I gotta agree it is my least favorite.
    7. Great GAME
    8. Look at 7.
    And I got bored. :P

    • Ereek

      Not playing Soul Nomad alone is a crime, but not playing Soul Nomad’s Demon Path means you’ve not experienced the best, most twisted and messed up “evil” path in gaming.

      • burnfist23

        And the only one that actually FEELS evil. I can’t think of any other game that makes you feel like the final boss.

  • Otaku-Sama

    Disgaea 5: Asagi strikes back. (?)

  • Göran Isacson

    NI made a horror game? Man, and you think you know a developer… anyone here who’s played it and can say if it’s any good, or is it just too obscure/never got released over here?

    • burnfist23

      It’s actually one of their more successful visual novel games. I even heard they’re adapting it into a movie. However, the only reason we haven’t been graced with the game is because NISA is not touching visual novels (Disgaea Infinite being the only exception). The only glimpse the US got of Hayarigami is through the DLC character Kogure in Disgaea 3 where the cut scene plays sort of like the logic feature in Ace Attorney Investigations.

  • Roberto

    14. The Guided Fate Paradox

  • ChiffonCake

    The face on that cover is an accurate representation of mine upon finding out that NIS makes horror games.

    Anyway, Disgaea being at the top there is not really surprising, though the little that I played of the PSP version felt a little dated, especially considering the gameplay of D2 that I’ve seen. Of course, it still looked good and I’ll probably still sink many hours into it, so whatever.

    Disgaea 5 is interesting news. Looking forward to it (and the portable version, heh).

  • Ereek

    I’m glad to see Soul Nomad so high! I’d like to see it a bit higher, but still, nice to see it so well-loved.

    It definitely deserves it.

  • Warboss Aohd

    Soul Nomad iz in da top 5. Dat iz acceptable.

    • burnfist23

      It’s actually surprising to me since while I heard a lot of people liked Soul Nomad elsewhere, I didn’t hear much about it in Japan, not to mention that the only SN characters who made it onto the character poll where Gig, both Revyas, and Danette, though Gig did very well by ranking at #5. I was actually expecting the highest non-Disgaea game in Japan to be Phantom Brave.

  • Warboss Aohd

    also there are 3 number 8’s on your list

    • ChiffonCake

      That’s most likely due to a tie.

  • burnfist23

    “This comes after the results of a survey by Dengeki in which fans voted for their favorite NIS games, excluding ports.”

    That’s not entirely true since both La Pucelle and La Pucelle Ragnarok are on the list. Anyway, here’s the full top 30 list:

    1. Disgaea: Hour of Darkness (1,139 votes)
    2. Disgaea 4: A Promise Unforgotten (727 votes)
    3. Disgaea 2: Cursed Memories (503 votes)
    4. Disgaea D2: A Brighter Darkness
    5. Soul Nomad and the World Eaters
    6. Disgaea 3: Absence of Justice
    7. Phantom Brave
    8. Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure
    8. Prinny 2: Dawn of Operation Panties, Dood
    8. Prinny: Can I Really Be the Hero?
    11. Criminal Girls
    12. Z.H.P. Unlosing Ranger VS Darkdeath Evilman
    13. Makai Kingdom
    14. Guided Fate Paradox
    15. Little Princess (Marl Kingdom 2)
    16. Hayarigami 流行り神 警視庁怪異事件ファイル
    17. 雨格子の館
    18. La Pucelle Tactics
    19. Cladun 2
    20. Angel Present (Marl Kingdom 3)
    21. Grim Grimoire
    22. La Pucelle: Ragnarok
    23. Cooking Fighter 炎の料理人クッキングファイター好
    24. 流行り神3 警視庁怪異事件ファイル
    25. Tokuhou 特殊報道部
    26. Missing Parts
    27. Second Novel セカンドノベル ~彼女の夏、15分の記憶~
    28. Disgaea Infinite
    29. 奈落の城 一柳和、2度目の受難
    30. 流行り神2 警視庁怪異事件ファイル

    Also, I’m sorry CG fans, I’m sure it’s a good game and the comments by Japanese fans do leave a good impression, but I can’t see how Criminal Girls is better than Makai Kingdom or ZHP.

    • Methylene

      They did specify that if both La Pucelles had been counted together, it would have been number 12 on the list, so right below Criminal Girls but before ZHP.

      Still don’t know why they decided to split the LPs though.

  • Sardines!

  • dragoon_slayer12

    How is Makai Kingdom so low!!?? I thought it was their best game period. Game play, strategy, humor (man I love that 3 in one dude, can’t remember his name, thinking valvolga)

    • Testsubject909

      I think it might be because Makai Kingdom was the grindiest of them all.

  • Strain42

    Wow, Soul Nomad was 5? I actually kinda liked that game.

  • puchinri

    Kind of a shame the LMK stuff didn’t rank higher, but I’m also glad I suppose that just Rhapsody made the top ten since the most love/representation it’s had in a while was the DS port. Yay for classics/beginnings sticking around~. (Especially when they’re fun games on their own.)

    I am surprised that LMK2 did better than La Pucelle though. Good for Phantom Brave, too. I didn’t realize it was so loved. ♥

    Will we get a poll too I wonder~?

    Also, I’m enjoying D4 a lot (sans some problems with translation here and there), and I enjoy the cast more than 3’s quite a bit and equally as the first OT3, if a bit more (but they’re such a great OT3 it’s hard to really top them).

  • Dominic Hunter

    Seriously, ZHP needs more love. That game was fantastic.

    • Ereek

      I think it’s just that Roguelikes aren’t a particularly popular genre. ZHP is an amazing game on its own, but not really the type of game NIS usually puts out, so it probably didn’t appeal to the traditional fanbase.

  • I think the saddest part of the list is how low La Pucelle (and Ragnarok) are on the full list. 18 and 22 respectively? That’s shocking. I hope it doesn’t dissuade them from ever looking at that again.

    I’ll admit though that Criminal Girls being as high as it is, and it getting a Vita game is… Shocking. I always thought that game was sorta one of those ones that didn’t take off…

    Really want Soul Nomad Vita and Soul Nomad 2 now though, please.

    • Methylene

      Actually, they are only that low because they split the votes between the two versions for… some reason? They actually specified in the article that if they haven,t split them, La Pucelle would have been in the 12th position. Not too bad.

      • Oh, well that’s good, but then the question is /why/ they split them. Is Rangarok considered to be such a different game in comparison to La Pucelle’s original release?

        It’s sorta sad, cause I feel like as a result, NIS might use that as reasoning to not revisit their idea of the La Pucelle sequels. But if they’re aware that it would’ve actually been number 12, maybe there’s still hope. Marl Kingdom obviously has it’s representation.

        As a note, pretty sad that Antiphona is basically an unknown game given that list. I was interested in that game in how it looked and the trailers, but I guess it failed to impress.

        • Methylene

          It might be because of the Overlord Prier path. They did say when there were talks about a sequel that it was going to be after Ragnarok, not the original game, so it’s possible that it wasn’t just a port but a retcon/reboot, which is why the game would be split.

          However, this doesn’t mean the people who voted knew that.

  • IS | 桂木

    It’ll be fascinating to see how Disgaea 5 tops Disgaea D2 in terms of wackiness

  • mirumu

    Given these results they really should be giving Soul Nomad a PSN release at the very least. All the Disgaea titles around it are at least playable on current consoles in some form whereas Soul Nomad tends to be pricey and still requires a PS2.

  • ShadowDivz

    Im so happy Criminal Girls ranked so high on the list. Very surprised, but happy.
    Also, its the first time i see a 3way tie for the 8th position

  • imtheboss

    Zetta the best character though to play with though.

  • Fidelis

    They’ve already surpassed the first Disgaea.

    The only reason people like it most is because it had a completely different atmosphere-it felt like a fairy tale instead of a bubbly anime

    Just listen to the ost. It breathes an air of nostalgia



    Unless they go back to that, none of the games will feel the same
    Even the story helped to make it feel like a folk tale

    It was simple and it had an aesop. Demons learn love from angels, Humans prove themselves brave. Three worlds are united.

    Disgaea 2 was a genric shonen plot

    Disgaea 3 was a wacky completely 4th wall shattering plot

    Disgaea 4 was a plot based on politics and revenge

    You can’t just enhance the gameplay to surpass the first disgaea.You have to enhance the feeling.

  • DyLaN

    ………Am I crazy for wanting tht horror mystery VN more than GFP/Disgaea? Why u no VN NISA?

    • Ereek

      Well. . .NISA released Disgaea Infinite. So we can’t say they’ve neglected their VNs in the past entirely.

      • DyLaN

        I think the only reason tht got localized is the Disgaea name on it… Good for Disgaea fans I guess.

  • Aci

    Disgaea 4 D2 will be the coolest thing NIS have ever done!! Also I’m really surprise that the fact that soul nomad no.5 . I want Gig back!

  • WingsOfEternity

    Wow. That list is pretty much exactly how I would rank my NIS games (well at least the ones I have played) except D1 and D4 switched around.

  • Rhapsody! Glad to see it’s not only not forgotten, but pretty up there on the list!
    I wouldn’t mind seeing those characters again. Great memories (the DS version, on the other hand… yesh)

    It’s funny, though, just a few minutes before I read the article I was listening to Amphibian Paradise. The flutters of fate, they are strong.

    • puchinri

      I’m really hoping it makes a return to~. And I love listening to the Rhapsody songs. That OST will never get old (at least parts of it won’t).

      • PoweredByHentai

        Doubt it. The Marl Kingdom series ended as a trilogy.

        You have the first one that crossed the pond: Rhapsody.

        Then the direct sequel which took over as Princess Kururu (Cornet and Ferdinand’s daughter): Little Princess.

        Then a multi-part story told from different characters to flesh out the missing pieces from the first two games: The Angel’s Present.

        I actually asked Sohei Niikawa (Nippon Ichi’s president) about that at Anime Expo back in 2011 or so and he says that the story is done and it would be difficult to expand on it any further.

        ADDED 2:
        Niikawa is a regular guest at Anime Expo. Seriously. He shows up to Anime Expo every year and you can find him at the NIS America booth.

        • Yeah, but the world continues in some way. La Pucelle has the grandson of Cornet, and then there’s also Antiphona no Seikahime: Tenshi no Gakufu Op.A.

          • komiko12

            I think that was the game with a younger Marjoly?

          • puchinri

            I don’t know for a fact myself, but I do recall seeing what looked like (a possibly younger) Marjoly.

        • puchinri

          I know~. There’s LMK and then La Pucelle and we also had Antiphona as matty mentioned (which I was looking at again a few days ago).

          No reason that another spiritual successor of sorts or something can’t make a comeback though. Disgaea has its themes (angels/heaven, demons/hell, etc) and the other series have their’s, and LMK has its own (puppets, royalty and such, the general charm and all). They can definitely do a similar title. ♥

  • Godman

    Whoa whoa slow down I’m not finished with my Disgaea Marathon yet, I haven’t been able to tap into D2 either and already 5 is on its way!? geez

    • Sardorim

      Disgaea 5 is years off.

  • SirRichard

    All I’m going to say, NIS, is that Soul Nomad is #5 and has beaten every other non-Disgaea game (bar Disgaea 3) handily, that’s a bit of a sign!

  • Sardorim

    Disgaea was never going to get defeated. It was the original and nostalgia glasses are strong. I personally prefer Disgaea 4 vastly over Disgaea 1, it’s simply the better game and has a ton more content.

    • Anime10121

      I find the two interchangeable, Disgaea 1 started the franchise, and brought us Laharl, Etna, Flonne, and Mid Boss, whilst Disgaea 4 perfected the combat and brought us Valvy, Desco, and the penguin bodyless Prinny Fuka! They are evenly matched imo.

      • Sardorim

        Content and gameplay wise Disgaea 4 blows Disgaea 1 away.

        • Anime10121

          We agree on that, but Disgaea 4 has had 3 games prior to refine the gameplay, plus the games have been getting bigger with every release, so I think its a little unfair to use that as judgement against the first game.

          • Skode

            Indeed and its telling the trio from Disgaea 1 feature in every sequel… without the foundation of their mixed bag of personalities and humour to show the series for its now trademark staple of great laughs and injokes as well as the actual gameplay itself we wouldnt be where we are now with the series.

  • Raze

    Soul Nomad is 5 Nis…5…
    Come on give us Soul Nomad 2…

    • Testsubject909

      Soul Nomad is technically the 2nd IP.

      With Disgaea (and various iterations of it) being the 1st IP.

      So. Soul Nomad is the 2nd most popular IP… Come on Soul Nomad 2!

      • Raze


        Even Prinny got a sequel there

        Why not Soul Nomad, right?

      • Bec66

        So I suppose that would make Phantom Brave their third most popular IP, but Zetta feels pretty stupid about that “They would’ve bought Phantom Brave!” comment right about now XD

  • ragingmerifes

    No La Pucelle…

    • Testsubject909

      Ranked 18th.

  • Yuriangels

    i surprising that Z.H.P. Unlosing Ranger vs. Darkdeath Evilma was on there, but even do I play the hell out the game!

  • Carlos Luis Ayala

    I hope they are making it for PS4

  • Anime10121

    Hoping its for next gen! I really wanna see how NipIchii plans to “next genify” the next Disgaea :P

    Good to see Nis fans have good taste though, the top two games are interchangeable as my favorites (Valvatorez could carry 4 by himself and it would be awesome)! While I liked the second game, I’m hoping D2 is better! Also, kinda shocked to see The Guided Fate Paradox so low on the totem scale, I had high hopes for that one (even if I dont care much for dungeon crawlers-which may be in turn WHY it ranked so low).

  • Ardus

    Ah Soul Nomad the game that birthed one of the best characters ever.
    I’ll never get tired of gig

  • Kuro Kairi

    Glad to see Soul Nomad get love. But Makai Kingdom so low? and what about La Pucelle? Maybe they’re just dated, or maybe its tastes.
    Still this list is fine with me, with the original Disgaea being on top and all!

    • burnfist23

      As mentioned below, part of the reason why La Pucelle got so low is because, for some reason, both the original and it’s PSP port Ragnarok were counted separately. If counted together, they would have been ranked at number 12.

      • Kuro Kairi

        thanks for clearing that up

  • Bec66

    Sweet so not only could we see a Disgaea 4 D2 but also a Soul Nomad and Phantom Brave sequal.

  • Skode

    So basically Disgaea dominates then haha. Mind you its the brand everyone will be most familiar with of all their series’ and to be fair its by far the easiest to get access to across the globe.

  • ZekeFreek

    I’m disappointed ZHP is so low, Disgaea 2 is so high and that shit like Rhaspody is even on the list at all.

  • Joshua Myers

    Disgaea 4 was a great game

  • Karl Josef

    Mana khemia 1 & 2 please >.<

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