Disgaea 4 follows the story of former tyrant Overlord Valvatores, a vampire who has sworn not to drink blood for 400 years, now leading a rebel group against the Netherworld President. The political setting is the main focus of the game’s storyline.
The game-play features from the previous games in the Disgaea series is still present, but new elements such as the ability of “grabbing” party characters in a tower fashion and throw them to reach otherwise out-of-reach places. Special abilities, like team attacks, can be used while in tower formation. Party monsters can still use Magichange to turn into weapons, and they can now fuse together with Demon Fuse to create giant versions of the combined monsters. The fused monster can also use Magichange and become a giant weapon for a party character to use.
The game’s hub, Hades, can be customized to the player’s liking. Characters found on Valvatores’ captured land can be befriended and captured. A captured character can be disciplined (forced to perform some actions). it can then be used to find treasure, added to the party or released. Another game feature is the ability to create a custom pirate ship to reverse-pirate Item Worlds.