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 Love in "Disgaea: Hour of Darkness"

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Written by   37
3 months ago

In my review of Disgaea PC that it focuses on positive themes despite it's dark premise. Love and Justice are one of the biggest themes.

Disgaea series is general has some kind of Love as one of the recurring theme. The first game I played from this series was Disgaea 2  and Romance was one of its themes despite how it looks like.

When I played Disgaea PC, I was surprised to find that love plays a bigger role in the first game. The only difference that it's another kind of love... Since Disgaea titles stories half-parody/half-serious, the topic of love is explored in many perspectives.

"Eternal Love ♥"

Minor Spoilers
The article only covers the first game, I never played the direct sequel.

The bulk of Disgaea story happens in the netherworld. The place where Demons live. The protagonist Laharl is the son of the late Overlord. Through-out the story, he fights to become the next overlord. His adventure lets him encounter rivals from all the sides: Demons, Angels and Humans.

Flonne, The Love Freak

Early in game, the angel Flonne was sent to assassinate the overlord Krichevskoy (Laharl's father.) When she learned that her target was already dead, and that his son is apathetic toward it. Flonne couldn't fathom that he didn't love his father. After he told her that's because he is a demon, Flonne made it her mission to see if Demons are really incapable of Love.

"If that's true, I'll carry my mission on a new target."

Flonne is defined by love. She speaks in ideals and shows kindness even to her enemies. That could've worked against her as helping an enemy isn't something one should do.

In the Netherworld Flonne encountered a huge culture shock. The norm there is against everything that she was taught. Instead of trying to reject those who are different, Flonne tried to understand them.

Kindness Is Love

While Laharl is harsh and too proud for his own good, he is not merciless. He can and does show kindness. Once in the main story he spared an Enemy when he realized that he has a son who'll miss him if he died. He also forgave betrayal more than once, but not before knowing their reasons.

Laharl's character arc in the story turns him from a arrogant brat who only cares about himself, to a proud leader whose selfishness is offset by a bit of kindness. Most of that was due to Flonne's influence.

The Red Moon

There's also the familial love, while Laharl claims to hate his father, (In my interpretation he seems to be lying.) He loved his mother before she died. Laharl's love for his mother is the one love didn't feel pride in denying.

Love = Sacrifice

Part of Disgaea's story explores the effects Laharl's mother's death had on him. One of the reason of his annoyed relationship with Flonne stems from how similar she is to his mother. He also hates the word "Love" because his mother died because of it.

One of the most moving scene in the whole game is when Laharl finally comes to terms with his mother's death.

Trying to Understand The Other Side

Disgaea is one of the best examples of Good vs Evil stories. Flonne as an angel is so good, and so filled with love that she believed the that all creatures are capable of love. Despite that Demons being evil is a common sense in Celestia:

Demons are creatures associated with Evil, while Angels are the embodiment of Good. -- Angels

A great way to teach open-mindedness...

While Laharl has many bad traits, he is just selfish and never really Evil. Etna doesn't care about good or evil but admired the goodness of the late Overlord (Laharl father the benevolent king.) That and the most Evil character in the game is an Angel (Even him has a good intentions.)

Open-mindedness is the whole point of the game. "Don't judge people by their labels, and don't consider yourself inherently righteous." because the moment you do, you'll do evil in the name of justice. Prejudice is where all evil comes from.


Disgaea: hour of Darkness deals beautifully with the theme of Love, kindness and open-mindedness. Having a comedy game let me have of all these profound thoughts, I can only recommend this experience.

Thanks for Reading

This article was first published in 2017. This revision is cross-published on here and HIVE blockchain.

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Written by   37
3 months ago
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