Chrono Trigger  - Review

Chrono Trigger
Ages: Everyone 10+

It was released 13 years ago on the Super NES, so if you have no recollection of it - it's excusable. A first for me too. When an industry labels something as a classic - it's important that one takes a look at it, be it movie, book or game. If you like stories - this is a story in spades - through lands, through time with characters that are so skillfully drawn that you will find yourself empathizing even with the villains.

The battle design (Active Time Battle) - unique at the time, now familiar, allows both individual battle responses and group combinations. The current game even allows you to "freeze time" while you make your selections allowing you to carefully plan your strategy. On the DS the touch screen is used for the map and all game mechanics, leaving the top screen free for the graphics. It works surprisingly well. The music cannot be fully appreciated until you have played through a significant part of the game. It is constantly unique, and strongly appropriate for each scene - we have Yasunori Mitsuda to thank for that.

The story has a modest beginning - the young hero, Crono, is being rousted out of bed by his mother for the city's gala thousand year anniversary. There he meets Marle and together they go off to try the new transportation machine. Marle gets sucked into a time continuum, Crono gallantly goes after her, armed with a wooden sword. Refreshingly, he is not out to save the world - he is out to save the girl. It eventually becomes more than that as they travel fore and aft through time saving the world and the future. Belatedly you remember the intro with the ticking pendulum - that's class.

The popularity of the game has spawned many chats, cheats, guides and walkthroughs. The most unique one is a play-by-play walkthrough with videos on YouTube, Chrono_Trigger_DS_Walkthrough Guide written by David Taylor.

You can play with a friend using wireless multiplayer - each DS system needs a separate game card.

The producers showed their respect for their game and for their players by producing an excellent and thorough manual, in color, and with save information and description of the DS controls and assignments.

Fun Factor: More than fun - satisfying
Female Factor: Marle, feisty companion; Lucca, inventor; Ayla, tribal chief
Player Friendly: Like old-time RPG's when you're dead - you are dead.

Reviewed by: Editor - 01/09

  • Chrono Trigger
  • © Square Enix
  • Platform(s): GBDS DS
  • To Order: DS $36.99