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Chrono Trigger

Genre: Role-Playing Game
Publisher: Squaresoft
Developer: Squaresoft
Release Date: Fall 1995

Written by:Squall

The name of the game says it all. It’s a RPG released by Squaresoft about how events are trigger by time. The storyline as stated above revolves around a little boy named Crono (note: with all party members, you are given the option to change their name. At one point in the game, you can change their names again and again) who resides in 1000 A.D. He heads to the millennium fair celebration where his friend Lucca is showing off her latest invention, which transports matter from one tube to another. Along the way he bumps into this girl named Marle, and they go see Lucca’s show. Marle goes into the chamber and vanishes. Crono goes to save her and that starts off your time traveling adventure

The one thing about this game that is truly enjoyable is the fact that some of the events that are being talked about in the present (the “battle with magus” in 600 AD) are some of the events; you will actually take place in, all though by altering the events of the past, you change the events in the future.

The main villain in this game is Lavos, a creature who lies in the earth draining the earth of its energy as well as rising up and causing chaos in a couple of time zones. The time travel feature of the game is awesome and when you complete the general storyline of the game it becomes even better. Leaving side quests in almost every time period. This was a first for me, as the difficulty of the game and the damage that Lavos can inflict; side quests are pretty much required as well as add more depth to the storyline.

For its time, its graphics were pretty solid. Sure, they weren’t anything like Star Fox, Donkey Kong Country, or Super Mario RPG. The battle system was something that you would never see in a typical role playing game (for its time.) It’s the basic three person party where the characters act when their “battle gauge” is full. The new element was the allowing of double and triple techs. Double and Triple techs are magic spells that combine two/three spells from two/three different characters. (Example: “Fire Whirl” is a double tech that combines Crono’s “Cyclone” and Lucca's “Flame Toss”) You learn double/triple techs when the characters have the necessary spells to unlock them. (In other words, fire whirl will ONLY be available if Crono has the Cyclone spell as well as Lucca has the flame toss spell. If one character is missing either, it will not appear under the dual tech menu) A double tech can only be performed if the two characters’ battle gauges are filled, have the necessary MP required, be free of certain status that may affect the character’s ability to be controlled/use magic, as well as being alive. What this allows you to do is instead of just taking each character’s individual character’s best spells and use them; you are taking elements from everyone and creating some very helpful spells.

Unlike the final fantasy series, when you’re walking around a location, you will typically get into battle when you encounter the actual creature on your screen (all though he/she/it may bring additional foes to let you fight) there are no battles on the general travel map so it does save time and frustration. For an RPG, especially for its time, the music was pretty awesome. The one thing I respect about the music is that it fits the time. (The map screen in the prehistoric area uses a lot of percussion instruments just to give u an example) It mixes a lot of music from different ages which adds to the feel of the different time zones. The menu system is designed to save a lot of time as the menu that displays the character’s stats, is the menu that you use to equip/dequip your character without having to go to a equip/dequip menu. Battle screen menus are rather simple as its “attack/item/magic” and when you go, you just scroll up and down to find what you’re looking for.

The reason that I didn’t bother talking much about the storyline is that the one thing I would hate to do as a reviewer is to tell you what happens, but like is aid earlier, it’s a truly amazing experience, where things that you do, will effect the outcome of the game, as well as what ending you will see. There are over ten different endings, and the first time u play through the game, the ending will be based on if you “fight this person at one specific time, or ask him/her to join your quest”. When you get access to the game plus feature (which allows you to start the game brand new with whatever items/equipment you have on a previous file. The only items/equipment u will not start with, are items/equipment, which is vital to the storyline) you can whenever you want, fight Lavos. However; depending on what you’ve completed or not through the game, will affect what ending you get. Which trust me adds to the playback value as you want to see as many endings as you can. The game once you get use to it, without game plus can last about 15-20 hours. Time truly invested. I just wish I could travel back in time to the point where I could play this game for the first time.

Additional information added by El Gordo

Chrono Trigger is one of those games that is awesome to play, but can be pretty frustrating. Unlike other RPG’s this game requires not just lot patience, but after awhile it can make you feel pretty stupid. There are a few times when, fighting a boss, you might want to hurl your controller across the room and then when you finally realize what to do the stupidity follows. The awesome features for this game are the double and triple techs. The storyline is pretty original, as well as the characters and bosses. Square out did itself on this title, making the difficulty a tad to high but this is a minor gripe. The soundtrack is great and typical of Square catchy, unforgettable tunes. What is great about the music is that it fits the location and/or the mood.

The time travel feature of the game is awesome and when you complete the general storyline of the game it becomes even better. Leaving side quests in almost every time period. This was a first for me, as the difficulty of the game and the damage that Lavos can inflict; side quests are pretty much required as well as add more depth to the storyline.

The controls on this game are rock solid, everything flows in one movement. The only problem I had was with the PSX version (Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy IV both originally for the Super NES were released on the Playstation packaged as Final Fantasy Chronicles) where little glitches make the game slow down. But the overall flow of the controls is great. The only big problem I have is that this game should be released on the GBA. But I doubt it since Nintendo got the crap end of their deal with Square.

Graphics: Cleary no Donkey Kong Country. The spell effects, characters, and backgrounds/maps were still pretty solid. Points off for the maps 4.0
Sound: Believable sound effects. The music was completely on target for a game like this. Despite some games, the music clearly reflected the various locations, as well as the feeling 4.5
Playability:Controlling is flawless; while the game play itself is priceless. 5.0
Bang for your buck: Plenty of bangs for your buck. The multiple storylines/game + feature makes the game enjoyable to go through again, provided you didn't break your controller and/or console 5.0
One of the best Role-Playing Games available for the Super Nintendo. Bravo Squaresoft. Bravo! 4.6 / 5.0