Review by ChocoRider

"If you don't have these games yet, PLEASE BUY THIS"

Final Fantasy Chronicles, for any who don’t know, is the re-release of two classic games by Squaresoft(now Square-Enix.) One game is called Chrono Trigger, the time-traveling prequel to Chrono Cross, which I highly recommend. The other is called Final Fantasy IV, or 4. Both games are essentially the same, but with a few bonus features, like some extra anime scenes for Chrono Trigger, and a bunch of new monsters, items, magic, and CG (computer-generated) scenes for FF4. Both came out in the 1990’s, the exact dates I do not know, and are now very sought-after. Of course, this wouldn’t be much of a review if I didn’t even say anything about either of the games, so here goes...

Chrono Trigger
This game is known as one of my favorite games of all time. When I read in a magazine that it was coming out for Playstation along with Final Fantasy IV, I had to buy it. I had played this game years ago, but had never been able to buy it. So, over 3 years later, I rejoiced when I read in a magazine Chrono Trigger was coming out again. I love this game, and want to tell others about it. Read on…

Gameplay: 9/10
The one bad thing: freakish loading times, which could have been much better. You’ll eventually get used to them, but at first, you might feel slight frustration because of the delays in between going into battle and opening up the menu.
The rest: Battles are fun, and are set in the Final Fantasy type of battle system, with a bar that shows how close you are to attacking, healing, or whatever. The most fun thing, though, are the double and triple techs. Every character has several special moves, and those can be combined with other characters special moves/magic. Thus, double and triple techs are born! There are many, many, many kinds of techs, and its fun to watch them all. Getting around is easy, with NO random battles (I love that,) and a world map with no enemies on it. There are several time periods for you to travel to, and each has their own environment, characters, etc. etc. Overall, the gameplay is AWESOME, and the loading times are the only thing that drags it down to a 9.5 instead of a 10.

Story: 10/10
Incredibly cool story, one of my favorites of all time. I’ll give you a bit of the first part, but no more. Basically, you’re a kid named Crono, who you can rename, who goes to the fair one day to have some fun and see his geeky friend Lucca, who you also can rename. He bumps into a girl named Marle(don’t worry, you can rename her too), and they go to see Lucca’s new invention. Lucca has invented a “telepod” device, which can basically transport someone to a matching telepod. Marle tries it out, and thanks to her pendant, gets sent back in time, and you have to go save her. From then on, you meet a variety of characters, and there are 7 in total. Each person is from a different time period, except Marle, Lucca, and Crono, who live in the same era. Some of the characters in this game are very entertaining, and I like them all a lot. The story gets really cool later, so you’re going to have a lot of fun, don’t you worry.

Graphics: 9/10
For the time, these graphics were works of art. Every area is detailed, with vibrant colors and monsters with personalities. The characters look great, with signature movements and different effects to their clothing. Like, for example, when the main character, Crono, runs, his bandanna flaps in the air behind him. The extra anime scenes exclusive to the Playstation version are quite good, and were made by the same person that did Dragonball Z. Overall, Chrono Trigger has very excellent graphics. Graphics aren’t the main element to the game, of course, but these are a pleasure to look at.

Sound/Music: 9/10
Wow. Just amazing. The music in this game is beautiful, and fits every area very nicely. I can’t think of any that I don’t like. The worst music in the game is the battle music, and to tell the truth, it’s not really too bad. I like it just fine, but the other music overshadows it. As for the sound effects, they’re pretty good, with standard magic explosions, and sword clangs. There’s nothing I can really complain about. The best, though, is the cool little tune that activates when you try to open a chest that’s been “magically sealed.” The battle sounds could have been a little bit better, but overall, Chrono Trigger does a good job with the sound.

Control: 10/10
No complaints here. Menus are easy to understand, and battling is easy to do with responsive controls. You shouldn’t have any trouble with this game AT ALL.

Play time/replayability: 9/10
Chrono Trigger is a fairly long game, with a few sidequests, plus its fun to see as many kinds of magic and techs as you can. Of course, being an RPG, replaying it isn’t that great, but you will want to. With plenty of extra endings, you will want to play it over a few times.

Final Score: 9/10
This is based solely on how fun it is, without graphics or anything else accounted for in it.

Final Fantasy IV
For any who aren’t Square-Enix nuts, like me, Square-Enix’s biggest series is called Final Fantasy. Originally, Final Fantasy 4 was called Final Fantasy 2, because Nintendo wanted it that way for some reason…go figure. Anyway, the Final Fantasy series is now considered some of the greatest RPG’s ever, with great characters, epic storylines, and fun battle systems. This is a look at one of the first Final Fantasies, and I would highly recommend it to any who crave a good RPG.

Gameplay: 9/10
Unlike Chrono Trigger, the loading times in this game are small, so that’s one good thing. The battles are quite fun, and are set in the classic Final Fantasy Active Time Battle System, in which even if you don’t do commands, you’ll still be attacked by enemies. There’s no bar that tells you how close a character is to doing an action, which I personally find annoying. Also, spells take time to cast, so if someone is close to death, they may be dead by the time someone uses a Cure spell. That adds a large challenge factor to the battle system, and makes you strategize more. You can switch characters between the front and back rows in and out of battle, which gives some more to the strategy section. In the front row, everyone’s defense is weaker, but their attack is stronger. In the back row, everyone’s attack is weaker, but defense is stronger. Thus, you’ll want to plan who will be where. You’re mages are going to die if they’re in the front row, and you’re fighters won’t be able to deal much damage in the back row. Everyone also has certain commands and abilities. For example, some people can’t use black magic, while some can. Cecil can use the ability Dark, in which he sacrifices some of his life points to damage all enemies, and Rydia can summon creatures…you get the idea. Battles are random, and you are vulnerable to battles at all times except in towns. Personally, I’m not a fan of random battles, so that’s a con for me. This game is quite difficult, so if you’re new at RPG’s, you might want to try out something else before tackling this. But when you play this, it will be a fun experience.

Graphics: 8/10
While nothing breath-taking today, it was pretty good back in its day. It wasn’t exactly spectacular, but it was alright. The graphics are 2-D, with no 3-D characters or monsters. However, it’s very neat, and you can see no glitches. Also, the characters are as detailed as 8-bit graphics let them be. The FMV’s (Full Motion Videos) that have been included in the game are pretty good, for the time, and are a nice addition. Overall, the graphics are fine.

Story: 10/10
The story is very neat, and like any good RPG, features a lovable cast and an interesting plot. I’ll start you out with the plot. You’re a dark knight, named Cecil, who is the officer of the kingdom of Baron’s airship army. Lately, your king has been asking you to go to several towns and steal the crystals from there, killing anyone who fights against you. At least, that was what you were, until you mouthed off to the king and told him how what you were doing is wrong, etc., etc., and thus you get demoted to just another dark knight. You’re next orders are to go to another village and deliver a Bomb Ring. When you arrive in the village, the Bomb Ring sets the whole village ablaze, and you lose your friend Kane the Dragoon. From there, you meet a bunch of interesting characters, like the heroine Rosa, the quiet summoner girl Rydia, Lang the martial-arts master, Edge the Ninja, and several other interesting characters. Every character is has an interesting personality, and the story is full of betrayals, plot-twists, and a bunch of other good stuff any RPG fan would want.

Music/Sound Effects: 9/10
The music is AWESOME! Seriously, the music is very pretty in many parts, and fits its area very well. The battle music is alright, and the boss theme is very catchy. Sound effects are quite nice, with your standard magical explosions and sword slashes. While nothing special, the sound effects are fine. All-in-all, the sound is done very well.

Control: 9/10
The menu isn’t totally responsive, and a little hard to get around, but everything else is alright. The controls are simple enough, with O being run, X being your action button, which you use to scroll through dialog, do commands, and so on. Other then the menu, this game is quite easy to control.

Play Time/Replayability: 10/10
This game is REALLY long, and there are some sidequests for you to do. While there may not be several endings, like in Chrono Trigger, you will want to play this game at least one more time, just for fun. You’re in for a long haul, though, so set some time aside for this game.

Final Reccomendation: If you already have these games, I wouldn't reccomend buying it again. However, if you don't I highly reccomend getting it. Two classics for the price of doesn't get much sweeter than that. Besides, by now, the price must be $20.

Final Score: 9/10
This is also based only on how fun it is.

Overall score: 18/20

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 10/21/03, Updated 10/23/03

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