Hands On: 'Chrono Trigger DS'


Posted July 18, 2008 - By John Manalang

During the prime days of the Super Nintendo, one role-playing game from Squaresoft stood above all. Its storyline intricately weaved time travel with mysterious characters and locations - from the prehistoric age to the future of robotics. That certain masterpiece, ladies and gentlemen, is none other than Chrono Trigger.

We're huge role-playing fanatics (seriously, what aren't we a fan of?), so we have begged Square-Enix to bring us a current-gen translation of their legendary title from 1995. And they heard our cries and the cry of a certain fanboy holding up his SNES cartridge (we won't disclose who), as Chrono Trigger DS will be made into a reality. Not only that, we bring you a hands demo straight from their E3 2008 build. Hit the jump.

Classic Image: Rest assured fans that Square-Enix decided not to tamper with the original SNES graphics when they ported the game into the DS. The classic 2D sprites were a welcome return - witnessing Crono waking up again in his room brought back so many nerd memories. Everything was the way it was before but thanks to the DS, you can now view your map at the same time you're playing which is a nice addition when you're traversing through dungeons. And speaking of dungeons, Square-Enix mentioned that there will be a brand new dungeon implemented into the DS version but unfortunately, the Square rep couldn't disclose any further information.

New Way To Play: Again, with the utilization of the touch screen, Chrono Trigger DS supports a brand way to control your adventures. The same controls are still intact from the SNES version, as you use the d-pad to move around, shoulder buttons to cycle through inventory and more. However, players now have the option to use the touch screen to move your character around by simply touching the direction you want your character to move to. Also, the touch screen features quick select buttons such as inventory, character equipment and even a bestiary list.

But, the touch screen commands can be a little cumbersome during combat as you have to double tap each command to execute a specific action. For example, we engaged several enemies during the demo and it was rather difficult to select a specific enemy we wanted to target first. We had to tap onto the "Enemy A" button to target, then tap it again to bring up our combat menu...and then tap it again to execute. So we were constantly poking holes to the DS screen as if we were playing Whack-a-Mole DS. But again, the version we played was an early E3 build so Square-Enix might tweak it. Aside from that, the combat remained fluid like its original counterpart.

Chrono Trigger DS is due out later this year. Check out the trailer below.


Chrono Trigger DS Trailer »


Hands On: 'Chrono Trigger DS'


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