One of Square's Most Beloved RPGs Still Holds Up - Chrono Trigger - Nintendo DS -
Switch Lights

The lights are on

What's Happening

Chrono Trigger

One of Square's Most Beloved RPGs Still Holds Up

I don't think I stopped smiling for a minute as I played Chrono Trigger DS. With its mix of nostalgia and straight-up excellent design, this is one of the best role-playing games ever made. A great cast of characters, cool story, and excellent combat mechanics -- Chrono Trigger is one of those games that has it all.

In case you missed it the first time, Chrono Trigger is the adventure of a time-traveling boy and his companions who hail from various historical eras. An extra-terrestrial beast named Lavos destroys the world in the distant future, so Crono and his pals go to different periods in time to find the root of the disaster and stop it before it can happen. The party members are far more than traveling buddies; Chrono Trigger uses an inventive combat system that allows you to perform cooperative attacks with allies for a dizzying variety of potential maneuvers. I don't know why this system hasn't been used in more RPGs since -- it's ingenious.

As with many of Square Enix's classic ports, there are a few new features in Chrono Trigger DS, but they don't add much. The two new dungeons are interesting and offer some cool rewards (including a new ending), but they only become available at or near the end of the game. There is also a monster training diversion, but it's flat-out boring. These additions aren't exactly selling points, but I can't fault them too much since they are on the periphery. They don't interfere with the core experience in the slightest.

Chrono Trigger hasn't changed much since it was first released for the SNES in 1995. The interface is cleaner since all of the battle stats are on the bottom screen, and there are a couple new bells and whistles, but that's about it. That's not necessarily a bad thing -- the gameplay withstands the test of time, but you shouldn't expect any drastic improvements. Then again, there aren't many ways you could improve on Chrono Trigger. It's a true classic, and playing it should be a government-mandated rite of passage for any role-playing fan.

Email the author , or follow on , , and .

Second Opinion:


Some games don't stand the test of time. Chrono Trigger isn't one of those games. A standout title that remains one of the most cohesive and entertaining entries in console RPG history, it's a game that simultaneously embraces familiar mechanics while broaching new narrative territory that hadn't been attempted at the time of its original release. This new DS version is a remarkably faithful port, except for some interface options that take advantage of the double screens, as well as a couple of minor expanded content pieces. The battle system, with its cooperative strikes, is both entertaining and engaging. A perfectly paced story delivers simple but memorable characters and just the right amount of flexibility versus linear paths. About the greatest frustration that arose as I played was the sense of travesty that we haven't yet seen more games with a ''Chrono'' prefix.

User Reviews:

  • 9.50
    Chrono Trigger is a timeless classic,released back in 1995,developed by Square and the likes of Sakaguchi(Final Fantasy creator who wrote the story for many popular Final Fantasy games),Kitase(director of the development of many Final Fantasy games),Toriyama(Dragon Ball Z artist)were involved with the...
    read more
  • 10.00
    One of the best Snes games in a handheld why not play it?
    read more
  • 8.00
    Chrono Trigger is a great game for JRPG fans. If you're not a big fan of JRPGs, this game probably isn't for you. Chrono Trigger has decent graphics, but incredible anime cutscenes. The cutscenes are really cool. The gameplay is pretty standard, except for special combos you can preform. Chrono...
    read more
  • 10.00
    I gotten Chrono trigger after a freind of mine hinting at how cool the game is. After trying it out I thought, this is how games were huh? Back to the point though, Chrono Trigger is an excellent game and since I have played the original on the SNES I was amazed at how the look and gameplay has changed...
    read more