Chrono Cross - GamePro.com Interview, Fan Questions

Last week we presented three interviews with key members of the Chrono Cross development team and asked you, the reader, to post your own questions on our Chrono Cross message board. And post you did! We received hundreds of questions in a matter of days and they're still pouring in.

Last week we presented three interviews with key members of the Chrono Cross development team and asked you, the reader, to post your own questions on our Chrono Cross message board. And post you did! We received hundreds of questions in a matter of days and they're still pouring in. Well, there's still a chance for them to be answered by the Chrono team and when you post, you are automatically entered to win one of three Chrono Cross statues (retail value: $79.99), courtesy of Palisades Marketing. We're extending the contest through next week, so keep the questions coming. Following are questions provided by you, answered by the director and scenario writer for Chrono Cross, Masato Kato.

Kato 1. The world of Chrono Cross takes place 20 years after the events in Chrono Trigger, but the two worlds seem totally different from each other (keeping aside references such as the Porre Army). Is Serge's world connected to Chrono's world via the strait in the upper left hand area of the map? Question From: Caliburn caliburnis@aol.com

Yes, that is correct. You can reach the Zenan continent if you go through the strait and travel the seas for several days. But the culture of the El Nido archipelago, the main setting of Chrono Cross, was generated under special circumstances and developed differently from the mainland. Access between the two areas was also very limited. Therefore, the islands managed to have a unique culture and environment separate from that of Zenan.

2. Ok, first things first, this game rocks!!! Ok, now for the questions. First, how long had you had the storyline planned out for this game? I know there was an old text game called Radical Dreamers that became part of this game. Did you intend for it to become a sequel to Chrono Trigger. Now, for my most important question... where the heck did you guys get the idea for Mojo? He rocks! Question From: Ashburn nova_mage@hotmail.com

Contest prize Thank you. Hmm, yes, in certain ways you can say that the story for Chrono Cross actually came from Radical Dreamers. It was a short story about a one-night adventure of three thieves, Serge, Kid, and Magil, who sneak into Yamaneko's (Lynx, a noble) mansion seeking a legendary treasure. When I originally started working on Radical Dreamers, I never thought that it would have such an ending. We only had three months for development, and I was just making up the story while inputting data. When I finally realized the connection of the identities of Kid and Magil near the final stage of development, I even amazed myself, saying, "So, that's who they were!?" (laughs) Also, since there were issues with the media, the connections between Radical Dreamers and Chrono Trigger were intentionally left blurred in the background so that it'd only be recognizable by those who would understand.

As I have answered in a previous question, Mojo was a straw doll made as a test during early development (you could say that the model designer was just playing around) which I looked at and thought, it's a go! Alright, now just add a couple of candles on the head, stick a big nail into his belly and... Oh, perfecto! (laughs)

*Translator notes: The straw doll that is described here is actually a doll used for cursing people, similar to a voodoo doll. It's a commonly known (and parodied) cultural ritual for cursing in Japan. Don't try this at home kids!

3. There were many deep themes throughout Chrono Cross and other Square games. One of the prevalent ones was the destruction of nature by humankind. Do you believe in the plight of nature vs. man, or is this intended as a purely fictional element in your stories? Are you trying to send a message to gamers? Question From: QuasiTime quasitime@hotmail.com

That's a hard question all of a sudden (laughs). I don't make games specifically to call out to players about environmental destruction or natural conservation. It's just that I hoped Chrono Cross would be a small trigger for each player to think about things like the connections between people and the world, among different peoples, and between people and other living things. That's what I had in mind during the making of Chrono Cross.

4. Throughout the game, whenever characters from Chrono Trigger are mentioned, they are talked about as if they are dead. I can understand this with Lucca. However, shouldn't Crono and Marle still be alive? This game takes place twenty years after the plot action of Chrono Trigger, correct? Then, why are the Chrono Trigger characters talked about as if they are dead? Question From: The Mad Druid spiralwalker@hotmail.com

This is another difficult question. (laughs) The fate of Crono and Marle is not thoroughly explained in Chrono Cross, but taking into consideration the fall of the Kingdom of Guardia and the rise of Porre's militarism on the main continent, there is a good chance the two friends may have been involved in some kind of incident.

Contest prize 5. What influenced the character's weapons? The Cards and the Carrot weapons in particular are pretty interesting, as is the swallow. Question From: Presence sayaman@planetnamek.org

We mainly based the weapons on the characters' backgrounds and designs, but it's not really the weapons that are so unique or interesting. It's just the characters that use the weapons who are so weird...I think that's a better way to explain it. (laughs)

One of Serge's weapons, the swallow, just happened to pop up in my head. I thought it'd be strange for a young boy to have this weapon in a small fishing village, so I thought, let's just say it's an oar. (laughs)"

6. During the course of the game, much of Serge's past is revealed. However, when it comes to the past of his antagonist, Lynx, very little is known. What is Lynx's past? Is it to be explained in a later game? Question From: The Mad Druid spiralwalker@hotmail.com

Lynx's identity is revealed towards the end of the game. Although I think I should have expanded on it a little more... (laughs) There's still much I have to learn.

Contest prize 7. Though the prophet Belthasar was trapped in 2300ad in Chrono Trigger, he managed to make his way to Serge's time by building the neo-epoch time machine (found in the laboratory behind the bookcase). Why does Belthasar appear in human form in CC? Didn't he transfer his conscious into the body of a Nu? This Nu was later turned off after the CT heroes got the original Epoch. And, is it possible to obtain the neo-epoch in CC? Could you please help me solve these puzzling mysteries? Thank you. Question From: Tiamat erik_pearson@hotmail.com

Well, let's see... The Belthasar of Chrono Cross is from a different future than the one in Chrono Trigger. It's a different timeline of the future, one that did not perish in the catastrophic destruction caused by Lavos. Therefore, the Belthasar in Chrono Cross is not the one who transferred his consciousness into the body of Nu and died -- he is a different Belthasar. Unfortunately, you cannot ride the Neo Epoch. If the characters from Chrono Cross ever got their hands on this and traveled through time, who knows how long the development time would have been... (laughs)

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