Chrono Trigger and Secret of Mana started out as the same game
The following is a quote from a Hiromichi Tanaka, taken from the liner notes of the Seiken Densetsu Music Complete Book compilation (a compilation of all Mana soundtracks, released in 2011 for the Mana series's 20th anniversary):
[...]upon getting word from Nintendo that they were developing a CD-ROM adapter for the Super Famicom, we decided to start a project in a different direction from Final Fantasy IV, which at the time was in the middle of development and was touted as a next-generation RPG fitting the large storage capacity the new cartridges had. The development codename for the new project was Maru Island, and we were making it as a collaboration work with Akira Toriyama-sensei after we established contact through Shueisha. I frequently ran back to the office just to receive and look at the screen mock-ups that Toriyama-sensei did in the initial stages of the project.
tl;dr: Squaresoft wanted to do an RPG with Akira Toriyama for the SNES Super CD-ROM add-on, but Nintendo canceled the Super CD-ROM, so the failed project became two new, distinct games instead: Secret of Mana and Chrono Trigger.
^Almost all non-translated FF Ultimania interviews ever. Tons of exclusive info. Please help translate them.
From now on when someone asks about the cut content, I'll tell them to play Chrono Trigger. Watch, I'll really do it!
What about FF7?
I'm Piers Morgan Webb.