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Chrono Cross (PlayStation) artwork

Chrono Cross (PlayStation) review

"Once upon a time, a goblin appeared in my home and told me if I did not unlock all of Chrono Cross' numerous endings via hours and hours of awful gameplay, he would infect me with AIDS. I suffered neither fate. Because goblins do not exist. "

Once upon a time, a goblin appeared in my home and told me if I did not unlock all of Chrono Cross' numerous endings via hours and hours of awful gameplay, he would infect me with AIDS. I suffered neither fate. Because goblins do not exist.

Chrono Cross is a pretentious mess of a game that substitutes depth with a half written plot and a snotty attitude. If you profess to not knowing what the hell is going on, then the game looks down its nose at you and sneers "I am for more artistic and intelligent people than you!" It’s not, really; it simply caters for the easily impressed with smoke, mirrors an overall rottenness that SquareEnix recently tried to write out of canon with the recent plot updates to Chrono Trigger v3. The one on the DS.

The battle system is overly simplistic trite dressed up in the finery of complexity, offering no rewards for the boring, grey battles you win. Random battles gift you nought but wasted time, seconds dripping away before your eyes as you mindlessly mash X to no reward. No gold, no exp, no strategy; there‘s three differing attack strengths you can select, but the game automatically chooses for you the best one to use per strike. You only level up by beating bosses who then (eventually) drop random stat gains. They're random and, therefore, worthless half the time.

There's a magic system. In a surprising twist, it doesn’t pretend to be overly complex and instead is overly complex. And completely worthless. You'll barely use it, and unused magic stored post pointless fight is spent to heal your party. As such your party, bolstered by this very helpful magic-assisted heal that negates any damage you‘ll ever take, will never fear death.

The party members you can recruit reach around the 50 mark and share a base three cliché personalities between all of them. In an attempt to make them stand out just a little, Square gives them moronic phonetic accents. Then they are given a small slice of overwritten plot, spend precious little time in the limelight, and are quickly forgotten about and spat back into the crowded waiting room of party member overkill where they hang out with the lisping pink dog, sentient dummy and paedophilic Latino wrestler who takes his pre-teen dates to the graveyard to hang around corpses who don't complain about what you do with that small child.

Note: The characters are so dull, you will end up inventing their own back-story. Yours will probably be more wholesome.

Thinking about just how bad Chrono Cross is hurts almost as much as knowing that there's people out there -- intelligent, clever people -- who swallow the manure that Square transport over from their ranch and personally shovel down their throats. Robbed of all its pointless glitter and loquacious phrases, the Chrono Cross plot can be boiled down to something more likely penned by a mediocre fanfic-er with a king-sized hard on for furries. Soft sci-fi theories about time travel and butterfly effects mixed with silent protagonists armed with an oar and a love interest with a stereotypical Auusie accent driven only by text who regrets that a dingo ate her baby and intends to cheer herself up by opening another tinnie and hurling another shrimp on the barbie.

It is a very pretty game, though. And the music is excellent. Aside from the battle theme, which is that awful sound you hear at the dead of night when cats gather together to ensure no one sleeps until they get laid. Shame it’s the piece of music you’ll hear the most.

Pyro's avatar
Community review by Pyro (July 01, 2009)

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