Chrono Trigger is the quintessential RPG. Anyone who's anyone has heard of it, and rightly so. It cemented Squaresoft's status as the kings of JRPGs back in the 90s for various reasons. Revisiting the game 5 years after I first played it was a joy from start to finish. As soon as the title screen rolled and Crono awoke from his bed, nostalgic tears filled my eyes. There was an immediate sense of familiarity and warmth as I walked through Guardia. The sheer kaleidoscope of colours and character bursting out of the screen was wonderful. The world is fascinating, and the music creates a fantastical atmosphere that's become one of the all time great soundtracks. Chrono Trigger has aged like a dream, and I felt like a little kid revisiting their best friend for the first time in years.
There's barely anything I can fault about Squaresoft's masterpiece. Time travel is a tried and tested story mechanic in gaming, and more often than not has it failed. Chrono Trigger achieves perfection through its simplicity but also its attention to detail. There are minor things you can do in the past that will positively reflect upon the world thousands of years later. Consequences are discussed and events unfold throughout your journey that benefit the world. Each of the main party carries a huge amount of charm that will cause players like myself to fall in love with them. They all get the perfect amount of screen time, and are all treated equally. You'll quickly pick a favourite.
I could go on and on about the greatness of Chrono Trigger. From its fast paced and easy to grasp battle system, to the thought that's gone into the universe, there's very little to complain about. It's concise, beautiful and enjoyable, and set the benchmark for all video games. I very rarely call anything perfect, but Chrono Trigger is just that.
I'll be brief: Chrono Trigger is my favorite video game of all time and I won't be able to say disparaging things about it. It's an incredible RPG with a brisk runtime that never wears out its welcome. It's a time travel story that doesn't get too convoluted or paradoxical. CT's heroes and villains are colorful and memorable; among those heroes are a medieval frog knight, a polite robot, AND a savage prehistoric tribeswoman. The combat feels fast-moving for its time and holds up in 2017. I've played Chrono Trigger over a dozen times and this recent playthrough won't be my last. Sorry, I guess I lied about being brief.
Man... what else is there to say about Chrono Trigger? This game is the literal definition of "lightning in a bottle," the perfect planetary alignment of creative minds and talents coming together to create a masterwork. And the best part is, it absolutely still holds up today. The spritework is beautiful, the music sublime, the design perfectly paced to accommodate those additional playthroughs. This podcast marked my 15th clear of the game, and I doubt this will be my last journey with Crono and the gang.
"What a joy of a game."
That was the thought that kept invading my mind as I traversed through the ages with Crono and his compatriots.
"What an absolute joy."
Chrono Trigger is hallowed ground for gamers: a classic whose creative team comprises of countless stars from the pantheon of 90s gaming greatness. Because of this legacy, it was always a struggle to find the time to play Chrono Trigger. What if it didn't live up to the hype? What if the game aged poorly like too much of my childhood?
And then Retro needed another host, so I finally played the game. AND WHAT A GAME. I will reiterate what I said in both episodes: Chrono Trigger is one of the most polished and refined games I have ever played. Period. From the game's well designed and layered Tech combat system to the evolving world and distinct eras, and how the story interweaves throughout them all, CT plays like a refined science concoction of what the perfect 16-bit RPG should and could be. Even in 2017, this game still stands the test of time. And that is all there is to say.
Chrono Trigger is a treasure, and if you have any reservations about playing this classic, have no fear. Happiness awaits you at the fair.
Brace yourself, and set sail on the winds of time.