Chrono Trigger

released on Mar 11, 1995
by Square

In this turn-based Japanese RPG, young Crono must travel through time through a misfunctioning teleporter to rescue his misfortunate companion and take part in an intricate web of past and present perils. The adventure that ensues soon unveils an evil force set to destroy the world, triggering Crono's race against time to change the course of history and bring about a brighter future.

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The game begins with mom waking you up. This is appropriate since many kids need moms to get themselves out of bed in the morning. In fact, some of use still do...

Never did I think I would play a game that would make every other game I've ever played look bad. I bought this game for $3 on PSN over 5 years but couldn't get into it because I didn't like the active-time battle system. This year I finally grit my teeth and decided to give it another shot. I was not disappointed.
Chrono Trigger appears to be a standard, classic Final Fantasy-esqe RPG experience on the surface. You got your party members and your menus and your quests and such, but there's actually an interesting simplicity to the gameplay that makes it incredibly unique. First off, there's only 3 options on the battle menus. You can attack, use magic/skills, or use items. That's it. Second, no random encounters. The world is filled with a set amount of encounters to run into as you explore (though they respawn once you leave and reenter an area). Grinding is nearly unnecessary in Chrono Trigger since the game makes sure you stay at a proper level as long as you're not actively avoiding encounters. Third, the game doesn't require you to manage any complex systems which is cool. All of the mechanics are very easy to pick up on quickly. Fourth, the combat is snappy. I was shocked that a turn-based JRPG from 1995 could be so streamlined (Earthbound probably misled me). Text boxes during combat are minimal and things immediately go from action to action to action, making combat pretty fast-paced. Even transitioning into battle is seemless. These elements of simplicity make Chrono Trigger a stellar game for JRPG beginners. That's not to say the game doesn't have a healthy dose of depth though...
My favorite aspect of Chrono Trigger is the skill/magic system, or "tech" as the game calls it. In battles, enemies are almost always moving around the field. It isn't just for visual flare, and can actually be used to your advantage. Tech moves fall into three categories: moves that target a single enemy, moves that hit enemies in a circle, or moves that hit enemies in a line. This adds a massive layer of strategy to fights! That isn't the only interesting thing tech can do though, as you can combine the powers of party members who have their attack meters filled up at the same time to create stronger abilities. As I mentioned before, I really did not like the active-time battle system in the past as I felt it only served to leave dead air, but once I started to understand this game's mechanics, I honestly don't think the magic/skill system would be as great without it. Overall, tech is one of the many things that make Chrono Trigger such a joy to play and it felt like taking a breath of fresh air in a genre I'd grown so familiar with. Once again, not something I thought I'd get out of a game from 1995.
Story and Characters:
Chrono Trigger has a great story. There's a lot going on in it so I won't go super in-depth here. It deals heavily in time travel so you'll be going to different periods in history and having a change in scenery and characters frequently. The storyline has many exciting twists and turns thanks to its chapter-by-chapter structure that always has you on the move. It never felt like too much to follow though since things are always kept focused and concise. To give a basic summary of the plot though, you play as Crono, a boy who goes to festival to celebrate the new millennium in the year 1000AD. You bump into a runaway princess, Marle, who tags along to meet your friend, Lucca, who is demonstrating a teleporter she built. Things go awry quickly as Marle's necklace causes the teleporter to send her 400 years into the past. Lucca and Crono race after her and some RPG hijanks occur from there. The trio eventually end up in the far, far future where things look horrifically bleak. You learn the world got this way because of a terrifying, apocalyptic monster awoken in the year 1999AD. Lavos. It is up to Crono and friends to find a way to prevent the awakening of this monster and save the future of the world.
Chrono Trigger has a large cast of character, but they're all pretty fun and memorable. The party members are the best of them all though, as expected. They're all so awesome and fleshed out both in and out of combat. Choosing who to take and leave behind was always such a challenging decision because I loved all the characters equally! They all go through their own little arcs and it's just so much fun. It's especially helped by just how animated everything is. Chrono Trigger almost feels like playing an animated movie which is an awesome accomplishment for a game made at its time! But I'm getting ahead of myself.
Visuals and Music:
Chrono Trigger has great music. The multitude of settings in the game lends a ton of variety to the soundtrack. The songs all add so much atmosphere and mood to scenarios.
Anyone who's played Chrono Trigger should immediately know just how incredible the visuals are. Akira Toriyama, the creator of Dragon Ball, did the character designs for this game and they are awesome. The game has animated FMV cutscenes to show them on full display and they simply tons of fun. They add a lot to the presentation. As for the in-game graphics themselves, they are gorgeous and have aged wonderfully. It easily claims my number one spot for best looking SNES-era video game. Environments are lively and beautiful, filled with vivid colors and populated by NPCs and enemies. Character sprites are clear and distinct. Animations are plentiful and full of personality. Chrono Trigger truly goes all-out with its presentation.
If you haven't already gotten the picture, Chrono Trigger is timeless, truly timeless. This word gets thrown around a lot when talking about great games, but this is actually the first time I've played a "timeless" video game and thought to myself, "Wow, this literally could have come out yesterday and I wouldn't think twice." (of course I'd probably expect it to be an indie title but still, you get the picture). This went from a game I didn't care much for to the best I've ever played at record speeds. It subverted and improved the turn-based formula before subverting and improving the turn-based formula was the cool thing to do. This is an absolute must-play for anyone who loves RPGs.

Obra maestra del JRPG con una estética y un combate muy únicos

Quantos anos fazem que Chrono Trigger habita as listas de melhores RPG's? Não é por acaso. Esse jogo é apaixonante, desde a arte do Toriyama, aos personagens, a como o combate se comporta e a empolgante aventura pelas múltiplas eras desse reino fantástico. Parece uma historia complicada, mas tudo é feito com calma e a narrativa se desdobra de maneira amigável para todos. Esse jogo é cheio de surpresas e ainda continua, com todo o seu mérito, sendo um dos melhores RPG's já lançados.

Absolutely incredible, it's crazy how well this masterpiece aged