E3 Impression

Chrono Trigger DS


Mikel Tidwell

Don't make a face at me

As I walk around Square Enix's booth, the music of Chrono Trigger DS is unmistakable. Finding the kiosk open, I pick up the DS and begin playing. I plug in my headphones to enjoy the music over the TV trailer right above the DS. The demo has two parts: the beginning of the game up to escaping from the forest, and the escape from the prison of the past. For this impression, I played the beginning part of the story.

Because it's a DS port, I tried to use the stylus. Gliding the stylus toward the edges of the screen decides if Chrono runs or walks in that direction. There's definitely more directional control than the simple D-pad. However, since the game was already designed with the D-pad in mind, it doesn't make that much of a difference. It was a little awkward to tap the screen--instead of using the A button--to talk to other characters, but this was a minor issue resolved by carefully facing the correct direction.

Fried Frog

A more major difference is noticeable during battle. I found that the stylus was much slower to select an action than the standard buttons. Because of this, I went back to the D-pad and button combination rather swiftly. It doesn't slow down selection, which I found important with Active Time Battle (ATB). I do like the large buttons on the touch screen, but without a stylus, it is mostly unneccesary. Maybe, with more complex tech lists, the stylus will find its place.

The game itself is mostly unchanged. The graphics are straight from the SNES; the music is as well. There are some changes to the dialog proving that it will be re-translated. Even though Chrono Trigger never suffered from a bad translation, there are definitely some areas that a new translation will be appreciated. Sadly, I was only able to drink seven cans of soda at the Millennial Fair. I guess thirteen years took its toll on me more than on Chrono Trigger.

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