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  5. Now that Chrono Cross has a remaster, it’s time for Chrono Trigger in HD-2D

Now that Chrono Cross has a remaster, it’s time for Chrono Trigger in HD-2D

Now that Chrono Cross has a remaster, it’s time for Chrono Trigger in HD-2D

Fans of the Chrono series rejoiced when Square Enix announced Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition, which launched last week. This remaster contains two of the three games in the series: Chrono Cross and Radical Dreamers, the two follow-up games to the beloved classic Chrono Trigger.

Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition is a pleasant surprise; the two included games have been pretty inaccessible since their original releases. Chrono Cross was only released on the original PlayStation, and Radical Dreamers was only released in Japan on the Super Famicom’s Satellaview device.

It’s the first time a game has been re-released in over 20 years, opening the door for new players to enjoy. It’s not just simple ports: Square Enix has tweaked character models and artwork, along with quality of life improvements like autosave, 2x speed mode, auto battle, and more. It’s a great way to play with them these days.

While I greatly appreciate being able to play these games on modern platforms with their various enhancements, one very important piece is missing: the inclusion of Chrono Trigger, the game that completely kicked off the series.

When people think of the Chrono series, their first thought is almost always Chrono Trigger. The game established itself as a classic in the ’90s and continues to live up to the standards of gameplay and storytelling today.

With thirteen different endings and seven eras that Cronus and his friends travel through in search of him, ranging from 65,000,000 B.C. C. in prehistoric times until 2300 AD. I’m surprised that many JRPG fans consider it one of the best games of all time.

Although Chrono Trigger received some minor quality of life improvements when it was ported to the DS and PC in the years that followed, I can’t help but think that Square Enix should take the opportunity to give this game the love it truly deserves. More than 25 years have passed since its original release and there is still much to be done to maximize its greatness.

When I try to think of ways to improve Chrono Trigger, it’s hard to pinpoint specific weaknesses. It would be nice if the game got some modern Chrono Cross quality of life improvements like auto-save, increased speed, combat buffs, etc. It would also be nice if we could play it on modern consoles. ; You cannot currently play Chrono Trigger on Switch, PlayStation 4/5, or Xbox One/Series X/S.

The 16-bit graphics have aged well like most SNES games, but it certainly doesn’t feel modern. I’m taking a look at other sprite-based games that have recently been released and announced, and I truly believe that these games can and should provide the framework for a new version of Chrono Trigger.

Square Enix’s Octopath Traveler, Triangle Strategy, and the upcoming Live A Live remake all use what’s called an HD-2D visual style that allows for the use of sprite artwork and 3D scenery in their design. This style gives games a nostalgic feel from the 16-bit era with a more detailed environment with visual depth.

Square Enix’s Triangle Strategy, which uses the HD-2D visual style.

That’s exactly what Square Enix should be doing with Chrono Trigger. Imagine how beautiful the stained glass window would be in the courtroom during the trial scene or how magical the Kingdom of Zeal would be with the depth of the floating islands in the sky.

Think of the dynamic of double and triple tech attacks between 2D characters if they could use a stunning 3D environment around them in enemy and boss battles.

Additionally, cutscenes that were added in the PlayStation version of Chrono Trigger could be altered or even completely redone to show the capabilities of current consoles. They could be absolutely beautiful and bring a lot of life to the characters and the world.

This is the Chrono Trigger I want to play in the 21st century. While it looks like Chrono Cross has been tweaked with minimal effort for its remaster, I don’t want its predecessor to get the same treatment, or even less. This effort was fine for Chrono Cross, the least-loved game in the series, but we want the great classic to receive a top-to-bottom remake that will leave both veteran and new fans in awe.

Now is the perfect time. Thanks to Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition, old fans rediscover the series and new fans discover why it’s so special. You don’t have to play the games in any particular order, so there’s no reason Square Enix can’t take the time to redesign Chrono Trigger in HD-2D style while we enjoy Chrono Cross and Radical Dreamers in their modern forms.

Ultimately, a new HD-2D version of Chrono Trigger would help us remember how we felt when we first played it and other great games from that era, allowing us to relive it in a new light, new, beautiful and eternally timeless.

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