Chrono Trigger 25th Anniversary – #MaybeInMarch

It was on this day – March 11, 1995 that Squaresoft first released Chrono Trigger for the Super Nintendo. A game that proved enormously successful with both critics and fans alike, with the game still being held up as among not only the greatest SNES titles or 16-bit RPGs, but one of the greatest games of all time. In recent months I have written posts about a brief history of a particular game along with my own personal recollections surrounding the game, such as Super Mario Odyssey, Resident Evil 4 or even the Sega Dreamcast. This time however, I am going to create memories rather than share old ones…

A couple months ago I wrote up a list of some of the games I was embarrassed to have never played, with Chrono Trigger being included in the list. For as highly regarded as the game is, I had never played it, though I had known of the game and the adoration many have for it. Chrono Trigger is a game that I had long MEANT to play, but always found a way NOT to. I have even avoided much in the way of game discussion around it, outside of general gameplay and it involving time travel…that’s it. I have never owned the original SNES version of the game, which my local game store sells for $140 cartridge only, but found myself a copy of the Nintendo DS version(along with a free copy of Chrono Cross!) this past January for $95 less than the SNES one. Having recently completed Final Fantasy VII for the very first time as one of my #MaybeInMarch games, I wanted to make a focused effort to not just complete more games, but I want to put an extra focus in completing some of those big intimidating RPGs like Persona 5, Final Fantasy X, and The Witcher 3. Think of it as a little “spring cleaning”….not like there’s much else coming out the next few months, right? So, for my next backlog completion, I AM going to complete Chrono Trigger before the end of March…

First Impressions

I have been playing Chrono Trigger for just under ten hours now and what I appreciate most is it has what may be some of the most supremely satisfying combat and overall gameplay in any RPG I have played, not just 16-bit, but of any gaming generation. I am currently using the Classic gameplay controls versus the newer touch commands introduced for the DS version and using the Active battle setting works just like in FFVII so there is such a fluid and intuitive feeling when engaging in battles with the various enemies across Guardia. As I have played more and more RPGs, I quite often find newer 3D RPGs not to have the same satisfying feeling in battles. There’s something about the older 16-bit games that have such a fine balance of simplicity in simply taking turns attacking each other, but there’s a level of depth to it as well as you have to plan strategize attacks, magic, item use, and equpiment optimization. Speaking of equipment, a seemingly minor feature that I love but don’t seem to ever notice in other games is the ability to directly equip an item while buying and selling from a merchant; I can buy several weapon or armor upgrades for my party, then quickly equip and turn around and sell the lesser equipment without having to jump through as many navigation screens. This is something that even saying out loud sounds insignificant, but generally, the less time spent navigating menus and managing inventory, the better.

As of now, I have just made the journey back the village of Porre after defeating Masa and Mune and collecting the broken Masamune blade. I am already impressed by nearly everything Chrono Trigger has shown thus far; I’m really enjoying the combat, the combat and story are engaging andthe characters are interesting(Crono, Lucca, Marle, Robo and Frog!). The graphics are still wonderful and have held up remarkably well, the fact the game features several shorter animated cutscenes is impressive. The soundtrack is beautiful and has been firmly stuck in my head since beginning the game, particularly the Magus Castle theme. I fully intend to write a couple more posts as I make my way through the game, or at the very least, a single post after completing the game with my final impressions.

I’m really looking forward to spending more time playing Chrono Trigger and sharing my thoughts. If you’ve played Chrono Trigger, what are your thoughts on the game? Let me know. Thanks for reading!

(Here’s a playlist of the entire soundtrack I listened to while writing this…)

Love Your Backlog Week – 2020

Today’s post is my meager contribution to the 2020 edition of Love Your Backlog Week. Kim at Later Levels has done a great job in promoting a week of sharing your love of gaming and showing that having a backlog full of video games isn’t something that one should be ashamed of. Far too often, the thought of buying a game we are interested in is rationalized away by self-shaming as we tell ourselves, similarly to our parents growing up, “You don’t need a new game, you haven’t even finished the last one you bought!”. As with lovers of music and film, it’s easy to become overwhelmed with the astounding range of choices and financial considerations aside, there’s nothing wrong with having a backlog full of games. In the past, I struggled with a sort of anxiety in knowing that I have all these games that I have hanging over my head that I need to finish, if nothing else, to justify purchasing them in the first place. As I’ve gotten older leveled up, I realize that there will ALWAYS be games that I haven’t played and realistically won’t be able to relentlessly devour games, as much as I’d like to anyways. I shouldn’t feel some sort of disappointment in not finishing a game, as if I’d get some sort of existential crisis in thinking I’ve accomplished nothing in life.

My backlog of games wasn’t actually as massive as I was initially thinking. I took a quick(well, kinda) inventory of games that I have never finished or have yet to begin. A decent amount of my backlog are RPGs, which typically range upwards of 40+ hours. It was about this point last year that I had just finished up Assassin’s Creed: Origins and was deciding between three different games: Final Fantasy XV, The Witcher 3, and Personal 5. So, not surprisingly, I started playing Persona 5 and after about 14 hours in felt like playing The Witcher 3. I then played The Witcher 3 for about 4 hours and haven’t gotten much farther on any of them since. I thoroughly enjoy playing RPGs, but due to a hamster-like attention span get intimidated by something like Persona 5, which takes an average of 90+ hours to complete. I’m currently chipping away at Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey, which due to its epic scale and enormous list of things to do and places to explore, may take me a considerable amount of time.

Where was I ? that’s right…my final backlog count shows 274 games either unfinished or not started.

A game you’re eager to play, but have yet to start

There’s a few of them, I’ve been wrapping up some of my PS4 games I bought back on Black Friday. I’m interested to try out Days Gone; I always enjoy zombie games, as well as open-world games so I’m reasonably confident I’ll enjoy the game. I’ve heard others describe it as essentially “an Ubisoft open-world game, but with zombies”.

Speaking of open-world Ubisoft games, I also intend to set sail in Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag after I complete my journey through Ancient Greece in AC: Odyssey.

A game you’ve started several times, but haven’t finished

The first game that comes to mind is Final Fantasy VII. I think my first attempt at beating the game was 2000-01 and I got past the beginning level with Cloud and Barrett but got stuck shortly after meeting Aerith. This combined with the annoyance of random enemy encounters made it difficult to progress further at a younger age. I remember some of the hype around its release in 1997, but was never able to complete it. In my New Year’s Resolutions post a month ago, I shared how I had downloaded FFVII on my Switch and had begun yet another attempt to FINALLY see this through. As I stated above, my backlog of games isn’t as intimidating in number, but rather the number of hours required to complete all of the RPGs contained within.

The most recent addition to your library

I believe that would be the HD Remaster of Final Fantasy X/X-2, another game that I’ve started a couple times and never finished. Unless pre-orders count, then it would be DOOM: Eternal…my god, the game looks glorious!

The game that’s spent the longest time in your backlog

This would have to be Dynamite Headdy, an old Sega Genesis game I’ve had since I was a kid. I’ve played the game countless times, but could never beat it. Anyone familiar with any of Treasure’s other games knows exactly the level of challenge typically found in their games(Sin and Punishment, Gunstar Heroes, Ikaruga). Another would have to be X-Men, also for the Sega Genesis. I was somehow able to get to the final level as a kid, but was never able to beat this frustrating game.

The person most responsible for adding entries to your backlog

Ultimately, I can’t “blame” anyone other than myself for adding more games to the backlog pile. I learn of all sorts of new and interesting games between gaming publications online, as well as platforms like Youtube and Twitch for games that I may have heard of, but knew little about. Another place I’ll hold responsible for my game hoarding would be right here on WordPress, where I get to read some really wonderful reviews on upcoming games or simply read someone’s unique approach to a game. As with movies and music, my interests can be varied enough that it almost reaches the point of overwhelming when I have so many different things that I love, but a finite number of time to enjoy it.


My backlog challenge for #MaybeinMarch will be, along with making my way through Final Fantasy VII, I want to blast my way through DOOM 64 – which I picked up this past summer but have only played a couple levels. In addition to these games, I am going to finally play through Chrono Trigger. I wrote a list of some games that I regrettably had never played and Chrono Trigger was at the top of the list. I purchased a copy of the Nintendo DS version and plan to document my first time through the game to coincide with the 25th anniversary of its release on March 11, a perfect time to play through what is considered one of the greatest games of all-time. Complete Final Fantasy VII, DOOM 64, and begin Chrono Trigger for #MaybeinMarch – sounds simple enough right? Thanks for reading!