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You know, Chrono Cross really DID suck.

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AJ Middleton
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Post by AJ Middleton » Tue Apr 20, 2004 12:16 am

[Nevermind]

There are different categories of sequels. To get to the point, we have the standard “Part II,” where the game takes place some immediate time after the original. These tend to have the same characters, same actions, same maps, same music, etc. They are created to be an extension of the original story. Take the Banjo series for instance. However, the problem with these is that you really need to play the first to get the full experience, and sequels that follow this pattern usually come out in a reasonable time after the original. Also, they tend to attract the same fan base.

With that in mind, it’s easy to see why the Part II is ineffective for making a sequel that hits the shelves years after the original. It’s even worse when it comes out on a completely different system that appeals to a completely different audience. Square faced this dilemma after moving from the SNES to PSX. Obviously, they wanted to attract some of the vets by extending the Japanese Radical Dreamers and making a more…popular sequel to the awesome Chrono Trigger. Yet, if they did a basic Part II, all of their new fans gained from FF7 and the like would be left out, sales would be low, and no company wants that. Tricky tricky…

So Square created Chrono Cross to work to two groups. I’ll call this type of sequel the Twoface, since that’s what it’s like. Directly, it’s a game that stands on its own. But to those who played the original, it contains enough elements to enhance the experience.

What’s more, CC doesn’t wedge its way into the series. CT left a lot of questions unanswered: What is the Entity? What happened to Schala? Do Crono and Marle develop a stronger relationship? For some of these, it seems as if the developers purposely left them unanswered in order to leave room for a potential sequel. CC takes these problems and creates a story around them.

The great thing about the game IS its duality. I appreciate the little (which is really an understatement) references so much…the Dead Sea, Denedorite, Zenan Mainland, the fall of Guardia, the Neo-Epoch, Lavos, Schala, the Reptiles…holy crap, I didn’t even touch half of it. See? “Little” and “few” ARE understatements. But even without playing CT, you can still enjoy the game.

In that sense, it’s an excellent sequel. It was designed beautifully and executes its task perfectly. Also, it moves away from the standard, and sometimes boring, Part II sequel. But really, how would a Part II work for CT? Creating a new plot out of a finished tale would probably end up as a disaster. CC was the only clean way to do it (I’m referring to the sequel qualities, not the plot.)

(Also about the plot, it’s lovely how it all loops back to an essential problem in CT. But anyway…)

Chrono Cross does have a few flaws, however. Even in it’s category, it’s good to throw in original elements whenever possible. It can’t hurt; the vets will get it and the newbies will just accept it as part of the game. CC doesn’t take full advantage of this. The world style was too different. CT was quasi-medieval, and CC was very tropical. Original battle elements, like experience, items, and the tech system, should have stayed. And on the picky side, demi-humans should have been Mystics, since that would have been a clearer reference. These probably would have made Cross seem more tied to Trigger.

Most people who hate CC ARE the vets, and their reasons relate to how it isn’t a Part II. They tend to forget that this was, what, 5 years later? and that Square couldn’t just tailor to their little elite group. A new era of gamer emerged that provided a lot of profit. Ok, so they released Chronicles. Big deal. It still isn’t the same as being there to play the SNES Trigger. Also, think about direct, Part II RPG sequels. Go ahead. How many can you name? Very few. For the way that they are constructed, Square RPGs especially are very hard to continue with a direct sequel. I mean, look at the controversy surrounding FF Advent Children. The biggest complaint is that it doesn’t smoothly fit into FF7, which ends with a 500 years later scene IN WHICH EVERYTHING IS OK. You can tell that FF:AC is a money-making scheme. Again, what could a CT Pt II be like? Could you imagine? CC ended with closure…and to reopen that exact story would just feel sloppy as well.

So yeah. Chrono Cross was an excellent sequel. It performed two tasks and was creative while doing it. As a sequel, I give it a 9/10.

[ April 19, 2004, 11:31 PM: Message edited by: Sir Bolt ]

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AJ Middleton
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Post by AJ Middleton » Wed Apr 21, 2004 4:39 pm

Originally posted by Perrin Aybara:
But it wasn't a stand alone game, it was a sequel.
It is both, as I said. For most people it HAD to be stand alone. The CT fans made a small percent of those who were interested in the game.

Gee Jay, did you read anything I said?

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Post by AJ Middleton » Wed Apr 21, 2004 7:39 pm

...

Yes, yes exactly. Most people didn't know that FF7 was literally the 7th either.

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Post by AJ Middleton » Wed Apr 21, 2004 10:36 pm

Please, you have too much faith in the idiots of this country.

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