NIS America has confirmed that omitted NPCs and other online play features missing from Disgaea 5 Complete are by design, not the result of a bug. Citing "irreconcilable platform differences," NIS America elaborates in a blog post that the "Network functions from the original game could not be implemented into the Steam version." NIS America continues by apologizing that the "differences were not communicated in advance, and we appreciate your patience and understanding in this matter." NISA closes the apology by reminding users that "Steam purchases come with [an] option to fully refund the purchase if total playtime has not exceeded 2 hours." The two-hour cutoff applies for automatic refunds, so it's possible that NIS America may approve refunds for players with more time, especially when Disgaea 5 Complete takes 50 hours to complete.
The full list of missing NPCs and features missing from Disgaea 5 Complete is as follows:
This isn't the first time a Disgaea game had a botched launch on PC. The original Disgaea released with a lesser soundtrack and a whole host of controller and performance issues. NIS America games don't have a stellar track record on Steam to begin with, as was the case with the well-publicized debacle surrounding Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana earlier this year. Similar to Ys VIII, Disgaea 5 Complete was also delayed five months, from May to October this year, and still launched without the aforementioned networking features. This was also coupled with the fact that savegames from the demo did not carry over to the full release, as NIS America changed the savegame file structure, thus making the two versions incompatible.
We have reached out to NIS America for comment, and will update this story, should they respond.