A number of system changes were made in Digimon World Re:Digitize Decode, based off fan comments and to incorporate new game functions. Some of these were made to increase the feeling of partnership and living in a “world of Digimon,” and others to make playing smoother for newcomers to the series.
For example, in the PSP game, it was sometimes difficult to keep the partner Digimon onscreen due to the camera. This was one of the first troubles the development adjusted in Digmon World Re:Digitize Decode. They also made it so that the Digimon traveled closer to your human character, giving a greater feeling of partnership (as well as making it easier to stay onscreen). Additionally, battles play out at a faster tempo, and not only can you change the camera to either stay still or follow the Digimon, but now the camera in battle can be in sync the Digimon’s actions.
On the topic of battles, many attacks had similar effects in the PSP game. In Decode, not only was the number of attacks increased, their effects were readjusted and sometimes completely changed to create more variation.
There were also many complaints about the death system, especially from newcomers to the franchise who had never played Digimon World. Part of the problem was that they felt that they couldn’t prepare for death because it came so suddenly. To counter this, the team programmed the Digimon to act more and more tired as the end came nearer. In addition, because some players felt that all their hard work was undone because of death, they added the Decode level to make the bonuses that came with raising more Digimon visible.
It is now easier to aim for what evolution you want based off the hints in-game, too. They’re clearer, and the parameters required to raise the Digimon have been readjusted so that they are more unique per Digimon. This way, you won’t easily get one Digimon if you were aiming for another. However, the game’s creators promise that raising the Digimon hasn’t been made any easier. Evolution items are also easier to obtain in battles now, so completing the now-larger evolution tree should be easier (but still a daunting task due to its size).
This also came with a complete readjustment of Digimon parameters. Because it was so easy to max stats out in the first game, they increased the maximum level to 9999, and, accounting for the Decode level bonus, they changed both the evolution parameters and the effects of the stats to reflect this change. For example, if not done correctly, baby Digimon could start out with 200+ stats (enough to fulfil most Adult evolution requirements), but if the bonus is too low, then the evolution requirements would be too difficult to complete.
The Happiness and Discipline system was also adjusted. In the PSP game, it was extremely easy to fill both gauges completely. Since the effects of Happiness and Discipline are exact opposites, with Happiness increasing lifespan and decreasing how much the Digimon listened to you in battle (although they’d still follow most commands) and Discipline doing the opposite, it made no sense to have both cancel each other out so easily. Thus, the Happiness and Discipline gauges were changed to polarize further and make it harder to max both gauges.
Finally, a last system change one of the interviews the game’s creators gave mentions that the rewards from battles have been increased. The stat increase is slightly more, and the item drop ratio and the dropped items themselves have become better. Should you not wish to fight battles, escaping from enemies chasing after you is also easier. While in Digimon World (Re:Digitize or not), the battles are never the focus nor the main method of growing stronger, they wanted to give the battles more meaning and to give players more incentive to journey outside of the city.
The game’s director stated, “In order to add everything we couldn’t in the PSP version, we went overboard in pushing our limits with expanding the game functions and content more and more. It was very difficult. However, with the 3DS, I felt that I could make all of this real, so I don’t believe I was wrong in making this more than a direct port. That’s why, [all of these additions] were necessary, and I am satisfied with it.”