18 April 2010

Chrono Cross – Playstation

I clearly remember the thrill of it. I had my own money, and I was buying my first video game for myself. I worked hard for this moment. I set the table for dinner, cleaned my room, and did other chores that are expected of a twelve year old. As I browsed the shelves for the perfect choice, Chrono Cross caught my eye.
Since “Chrono” was in the title, I figured it was related to the game Chrono Trigger, which was another game I loved. That fact gave me high hopes for this game, so without second-guessing my choice I brought it to the counter and paid. Little did I know that I was buying the game that would have the strongest impression on me and would still be my favorite game today.
The game starts with action and a scene that leaves the player wanting more. You learn right away how to battle and a future goal of the hero and his friends. After the sinister scene of a future murder, the player discovers that it was all a dream. The hero then awakens to his mother calling to him, exactly like how the game Chrono Trigger begins. That was also a good sign that I was in for a great gaming experience.
I fell in love with the hero, Serge, right away even though he was a silent character. The game barely began, and you were getting some of his story. A little old lady reminds you why you have a fear of cats, and you learn of a fond friendship between Serge and his childhood playmate, Leena. I absolutely hate when a gamer does not get to know the characters he/she controls for so many hours. I knew that I would befriend many intriguing characters just by talking to the villagers in the first town.
Everything about the beginning of this game made me glad I bought it. Serge’s hometown, Arni, blew my mind. The music was calming and inviting and the town itself was beautiful. I wished that I grew up in such a quaint, little place. When you go to the docks of the town, you see a vast deep blue sea that spreads over many other breathtaking sights. It made me look forward to visiting the other areas of the El Nido archipelago. I still prefer the sight of this game to the recent ones that have much better graphics. The colors were so vibrant, everything in that game was pleasing to the eyes. Even things that were meant to be ugly had a beauty to it that is hard to find in many other games. You can tell that the creators of this game cared about what the product of their time and talent would be.
I was also introduced to my favorite video game character of all time, Kid, as well. She was feisty and full of life, and added a glee to all the different situations of the game. The first time she told an enemy that she would “kick your arse so hard, you’ll kiss the moons,” I was glad she was on my team. Without Kid, this game would not be what it is. Her involvement is a big part of what makes me replay this game over and over again. I was heartbroken when the beginning scene of this game came true, and Kid was taken away from Serge and I.
The story of this game kept me interested and always wanting to know more. It was complex, and it made the player actually have to think about the events that were occurring. If a story is bad, I will not enjoy the game. I’ll suffer through it and regret wasting my time on it. With Chrono Cross, I had no regrets. The themes were deep and meaningful. The game brings up the importance of choice, and the “what ifs” that everyone wonders if they chose differently in a part of their life. The game even brings up the issues of race and prejudice. Granted it was demi humans that were suffering instead of people of different colors, but it still reminds the player of the behavior of people today. You will never get bored of this story. To this day, ten years later, I still learn something new about the plot every time I replay the game.
The game itself wasn’t enough for me. I ended up taking the soundtrack from my brother. None of the music bothered me in this game. Usually, I’ll like a few songs from the game and not really care for the others, but it was different in Chrono Cross. I listen to this soundtrack when I do homework. It helps me think straight. Even my dad found a song in this game that he loved, and he will play his bass guitar to it. He was pleased to see me playing this game during my last Spring Break when I was home. He didn’t even play the game and he still found something to enjoy about it.
I’ve played plenty of great games, but I still prefer Chrono Cross over all the others. A few weeks ago I thought that my game wasn’t working anymore, and I was genuinely upset. Turns out my PS2 is just starting to reject original Playstation games, but I can handle that. I’m pretty sure I’m going to have a proper funeral for those discs when they stop working. It will be a sad day. Until then though, I will cherish every moment of the game and reluctantly buy a new copy when it does stop working.
By Heather Aug