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SaitoHajime101's Chrono Cross Game Review

Chrono Cross game Review

Story & Playability

Ah! My First-Game-Review (cough cough).

Chrono Cross. Sequel to the beloved Chrono Trigger from the SNES. Chrono Cross takes place, I don't know, a thousand years after the events in Chrono Trigger (not even sure if its a direct sequel). At the time this was released was back when Squaresoft (now know as Square Enix) was at its best. Along with the success of some of their greatest RPGs (including the Final Fantasy Series), this game was also a hit (as far as I know). Now, in my opinion, I think this game got a little overshadowed by some of the other games that came out from Square at the time so unless if you had any prior relation to Chrono Trigger, you probably haven't heard of this (at least at the time it was released).

This game follows the main character Serge (you can rename him in the game) and his dimension jumping companions. You start the game off having to take on a small request from Serge's love interest, Leena, to go and collect materials so she can make a necklace. This quest gets you familiar, not only with the battle system, but with its element system as well (not to mention a view of the world map). Now upon finishing the quest and meeting Leena at Opaasa Beach, you find yourself unintentially dimension-warped to an alternate version of the world you live in. Thats when the actual story starts which I'll leave for you readers to find out for yourselves.

The overall story does a decent job with the differences between worlds. For example a character you can meet (and recruit), Van, is poor in one world and rich in the other world. Everyone you meet has an opposite persona in the other world that reflects upon a major decision in their life. Ah-ha! We've made it to the true concept of the story. Choices. As we all have major choices we make in life that not only shapes our personalities but our way of life as we grow older. They reflect this in Chrono Cross. Each decision has a positive and a negative. A good example would be the character trees. In the game you can recruit a large amount of characters, however some characters can't be recruited if you don't say the right dialogue or some characters won't join you if you don't recruit a certain character before. Choices is a big element in this game and what you do concerning characters and dialogue. However your choices will not affect the end result, meaning you still fight the same bosses and same final boss. How you get to that point is nearly the same as well, but whats different is the characters you have with you when you do it. Now also keep in mind the writers for this game have granted us with some alternate endings as well, up to approximately 12 or 13 different endings.

The story is interesting to play through and does alot to convince you to think before you act. However once you hit the End Game + mode, you'll end up hitting your R2 button to speed through the game just so you can get stuff you missed.

For those who have played Chrono Trigger, you'll find references to the game throughout Cross. Now if you look up a FAQ for this game, there have been questions and rumors about certain "possible" references that actually aren't real references. One of the biggest ones is the fact some were saying Glenn (the youngest of the Acacia Dragoons and brother of Dario) is similiar to Frog from Trigger. As far as I remember thats a flat denial from Square. However its been so long since I've read up on the references that I could be mistaken. Go google it if you want a list.

For you readers information, you do NOT need to have played Trigger in order to enjoy and understand this game. I actually played this game prior to playing Trigger and I still enjoyed and understood it all. The only thing you'll miss out is the subtle references to Trigger which is no big loss.

Rating: 7

Graphics

The game provided anime-style portraits of the characters while providing 3D graphics in game play. Keep in mind this game was released during the height of the Playstation One and provided some pretty good graphics in the FMVs. However your basic 3D game play seemed very messy and didn't seem that smooth at all. At times it gets very choppy as well (which I'll explain in greater detail in presentation). Compare to Final Fantasy games that came out on the PSOne, you'll notice a big difference. Even FF7 had smoother graphic detail than Chrono Cross.

Everyone screams for a FF7 remake but to be honest it doesn't need one. Chrono Cross however is an oldie that Square Enix needs to put back on the drawing board and update everything. Alot of casual gamers play games for good graphics (something looks pretty youll be able to start at it for hours), however with the poor quality of the 3D, it makes it hard to look at times. Its a very mediocre attempt at 3D with the available hardware that the PSOne had (which could've allowed for far better graphics than what they attempted). The anime-styled portraits were probably the highlight in this section and thats not saying much considering they only appear so often throughout the game (heh).

Rating: 4

Sound

The sound quality was your basic PSOne quality but despite that, the music was superb. This game came out at approximately the time when fully lyriced songs were making their way on to PSOne games (FF8 released in Feb of 1999, Legend of Dragoon in Dec of 1999 and CCross in Nov of 1999, all of which had a song with lyrics that was featured within the game, usually at the end). Because of this, Chrono Cross had a wonderfully written, composed and voiced song "Radical Dreamers" that played at the end. Combine this with the beautifully composed BGMs by Yasunori Mitsuda, made for a good 1, 2 punch. Each song, each BGM, wasn't played just to be played (except for the battle songs), each one actually enhanced the current part of the game. For example, the "Another World" theme, I actually listened to that for about 5 minutes, just letting my character sit there on the world map while I listened to the BGM. I did this at various times throughout the game because I like the music and still do. I went out of my way to purchase the soundtrack and if I do that, that means I truly enjoyed what I heard.

Rating: 9

Fun

An average length RPG that falls short of a great. Its has alot of high points, but the low points are what is killing its rating. Some of you may think I'm being hard on parts (the graphics in particular) being the age of the game. I'm saying this now to assure you that I'm not. I started gaming years before the PSOne was released and seeing the change in graphics over the years and consoles gave me my sense of respect for the old school. Graphics is not what makes a game. All elements I'm covering here in this review and then some, is what makes a game.

It seems this game was a properly well thought out game but with the lack of any real eye candy, the average gamer would easily overlook it. Especially nowadays, only those who have proper respect for the old school would take a second look at this game. This game is in need of an engine overhaul to adhere to the new generation of consoles and gamers. Without that this game will still be another one of the underrated and under appreciated.

The story however well it was written out still has problems, especially when you get further into the game. I find the lack of any random encounters pretty... well for the lack of a better word, stupid. After the first time playing this game (after starting countless new games) I'm running around enemies that I should actually fight to gain materials. It tries to force you to fight enemies but you don't need to in order to beat the game. You don't gain star levels from minor enemies, only from bosses (aka no basic leveling system). Even on the occasion you do gain some extra HP to increase your HP capacity, thats all you really get. Once in a blue moon would you get some extra stats to your attack or defense of sorts which only goes up by one. The game is too easy. Thats pretty much what I'm trying to say. I've ran through half the game with only equiping one character with elements, the other two only had their pre-slotted elements (only two or three depending on the star level). I've done pretty much all I can do in this game and I find nothing that has me exerting some effort to beat a boss or enemy. The puzzles in this game (like pushing two barrels into sewer water to make a bridge) were too easy.

The story and music as good as they can be, they can't keep the interest on their own. A player will quit playing if the gameplay is repetative and unnecessary or if the difficulty is too low.

If all you want is a game with a great story and music or if you are a fan of Chrono Trigger and need another Chrono fix, check this game out otherwise you might want to be a little wary on this game. This game is definitely not for everyone because the flaws stick out like sore thumbs. The 30+ hours you might spend on this game probably isn't worth it (maybe less hours dependings on quick you want to go).

Rating: 5

Final Verdict

6.17 (average)

Reviewed by SaitoHajime101, Feb 01, 2010

Comments

  1. Hikaruru Mute Member Feb 02, 2010

    Great review dude! ill play this game a long time ago and really like it! and u have rgt! the music is the best in this game! completely asowme i love it xD i make me remenber great times xD

  2. emina07 Mute Member Feb 07, 2010

    tnx

  3. rukasu04 Mute Member Feb 08, 2010

    This game is awesome

  4. shirayu Feb 11, 2010

    i`ll play that game! it sound very interesting and is for psp! yeah! i download that game tnx!

  5. Warpten29 Feb 23, 2010

    great!


    merged: 03-19-2010 ~ 05:58am
    This great!

    merged: 03-19-2010 ~ 02:00pm
    i think this review is fine. its just simple

  6. SchRita May 01, 2010

    Thanks for the review!

  7. rukasu04 Mute Member May 15, 2010

    Nice review :D

  8. emina07 Mute Member May 28, 2010

    ...

    merged: 05-28-2010 ~ 12:20pm
    ...

  9. SchRita Aug 27, 2010

    Cool!

  10. back07 Sep 26, 2012

    thanks for the nice review
    :)

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