Best. Game. Ever?
If you hang out at gaming forums (like our own fine forum) then you have probably seen a lot of posters positively getting their knickers in a twist about a game called Chrono Trigger appearing on the Nintendo DS. This is an article for those that are still scratching their heads and wondering what the fuss is about.
Released in 1995, Chrono Trigger pushed boundaries gamers didn’t even know existed (space and time), delivering an epic RPG that made many innovations to the genre - many of which have only become commonplace recently. If you are a fan of bad puns, you could say that Chrono Trigger really was ahead of its time.
Also worthy of mention was the ‘dream team’ Square managed to put together for this project. Staff for this game included:
Sakaguchi Hironobu – The Final Fantasy series calls this man ‘Dad’.
Nobuo Uematsu – One of the most respected composers in the industry.
Yuuji Horii – The Dragons Quest series calls this man ‘Pop’.
Akira Toriyama – Dragon Ball calls this man ‘Old Man’.
Masato Kato – Went on to write the story to Final Fantasy VII
As well as explaining the sheer quality of this game, it also explains why the character design seems familiar for Dragon Ball fans.
Chrono Trigger is about a small group of quirky characters travelling time to save the world. On your journey you will travel through some wonderfully creative environments, meet truly humorous characters and fight many huge enemies. It doesn’t hurt that this is one of the most beautiful games ever sprited, or that the music is to this day one of the best videogame soundtracks ever. Anyone that doesn’t crack a smile to Frog's theme song has no heart, ears or mouth. All of this comes together to form an experience reeking of atmosphere. So much so that it hurts.
Described as revolutionary at the time, Chrono Trigger featured certain elements that would be ignored by franchises such as Final Fantasy for a good many years. Chrono Trigger did not have a random battle system; instead, enemies appeared on the map and were in many cases easily avoided. Battles wouldn’t take you to some random environment - they happened right where you were. Characters could team up to launch united attacks. There were multiple endings. I won’t spoil the game too much, but there are just so many small touches that add up to one huge gaming experience. Sure, some of these features aren’t ground breaking by themselves today, but they have never been put together the same way since.
Despite being a fan favourite, Chrono Trigger never recieved a PAL release. Not even the PlayStation ports hit the PAL market. So now with the DS game, maybe this classic will get its first official release here? Even if it doesn’t, at least with the DS you don’t need any special gear to import.
From the looks of it, the DS version of the game won’t redo (butcher) this classic too much. Expect the anime scenes from the PlayStation version, something to do with utilising the second screen and apparently a new dungeon that makes use of the DS’s wireless – apart from that not much is known.
Chrono Trigger is regarded by some as the one of the best games ever; having imported the original recently I can agree that it is one of the best games I have ever played (along with Okami). Anyone that has yet to play this owes it to themselves to give this a go.