Review by SR71halo
"With excellent gameplay, a memorable soundtrack and a thrilling story, Chrono Trigger truly is a masterpiece"
Being a Sega Genesis kid growing up, I never got my hands on a Super Nintendo. Although I loved my Genesis, there are many cl@$$ics on the SNES that I regret missing out on. The one I regret not playing most of all is the time traveling epic, Chrono Trigger. This grand RPG is truly a work of art on all fronts; gameplay, storytelling, and the soundtrack.
We start our adventure one morning at the Millennial Fair. You play as the protagonist of the story, Crono, as he is awaken by his mother to go see his best friend, Lucca, give a demonstration of her latest creation at the fair. While on his way, Crono bumps into Marle, a tomboy princess who befriends Crono and accompanies him. Both characters attend Lucca's demonstration of her new teleporter. Unfortunately, things go horribly wrong when Marle steps into the teleporter and gets sent back in time, thanks to a mysterious amulet she was wearing. Without a moment to lose, Crono and Lucca step through to save Marle and restore order to the timeline. However, that's not all the story is based around. The plot is full of surprises that always has you guessing and keeps you on your toes. The whole game is based around traveling through time to solve puzzles or to find your way around the world. There is a total of 13 different endings to this game too, so there is plenty of room for replay value.
The graphics are top notch for the 16 bit SNES. The world of Chrono Trigger is very colorful and there is a great amount of detail on all objects and settings. What's even more impressive than the graphics is the fantastic score composed by Yasunori Mitsuda and Nobuo Uematsu that still holds up as on of the best soundtracks in any game to date.
The gameplay is a bit simple but very unique. You control Crono (who uses lightning magic) through most of the game with two other party members of your choice; Marle (water), Lucca (Fire), Frog (a frog from 600 A.D. who uses water magic), Robo (a robot from 2300 A.D.), or Ayla (a cavewoman from the prehistoric times). There are two types of screens in the whole game. The overworld is set in a top-down view and meant to travel from place to place. You will not be encountered by any enemies or any danger while here. The other play area is scaled up and is used when walking around in cities, caves, forests, or other similar places. This is how most of the game is played as you can talk to NPCs and/or buy from their stores, or you can encounter enemies and do battle. Unlike most Japanese RPGs like Final Fantasy where there are random encounters and it switches to a new screen and area for battle, Chrono Trigger shows the creatures walking around and the battle stays in the play area. Everyone has their attack by using their sword, gun, crossbow, or fists (depending on the character) but you also have your "techs" available to you as well. Each character has their own set of mana that can be spent on single attacks or you can cause even more damage by using two of your characters for double attacks OR use all 3 for triple attacks for massive damage. These powerful skills can be taught by leveling up your characters and just using them in battle. I like that the game gives you a bar this time that shows you when which character will be ready to perform his/her attack. Battles can occasionally be on the easy side but overall, the whole battle system is very unique, especially the different team attacks that you can learn, leaving you to decide which team is the best for you.
Even to this very day, Chrono Trigger remains to be one of the best RPGs ever made if it isn't the best already. I haven't even played this game until 5 years ago and even I was amazed with the game's exciting story, likable characters, unique gameplay and an excellent soundtrack to boot. This work of art has it all and it has stood the test of time almost 16 years later. If you like the old Final Fantasy games or if you just like turn based JRPGs, then Chrono Trigger is definitely right up your alley.
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 02/03/11
Game Release: Chrono Trigger (US, 08/31/95)
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