Is Chrono Cross a sequel to Chrono Trigger?

It's complicated for fans but not for the creators.

Fans have been debating whether Chrono Cross is a sequel to Chrono Trigger since 1999. Some say it's undoubtedly a sequel, with intersecting storylines and characters, but others put it firmly in the "side story" camp. Here's the definitive answer.

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Is Chrono Cross a sequel or side story to Chrono Trigger?

Image via Square-Enix

According to the scenario director of Chrono Trigger, Masato Kato, the connection goes deeper than simply calling Chrono Cross a sequel. "We didn't want to directly extend Chrono Trigger into a sequel, but create a new Chrono with links to the original," Kato says. The point of Chrono Cross was always to create a new property that took full advantage of PlayStation's technology—not to rehash an old gaming system. That's why Kato believes that "Cross is Cross, and NOT Trigger 2."

Innovation in every aspect of the Chrono Cross production was a top priority. Producer Hiromichi Tanaka also defined a game sequel as one that keeps and improves the systems of the original, but this was considered impossible in the generational jump from Super Nintendo to PlayStation. Doing the same again wouldn't have been enough. Originally, Squaresoft began the development of the PlayStation classic, Xenogears, intending it to be a sequel to Chrono Trigger.

Screenshot by Pro Game Guides

Related: All Skelly bones locations in Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition

However, after the Japan-exclusive release of Radical Dreamers, Kato wanted to expand the story of Kid, a pivotal Chrono Cross character. Once Chrono Cross entered full production in 1998, the development team felt considerable pressure to make a great follow-up to Chrono Trigger—and they certainly succeeded. Even today, Cross's art direction, battle system, writing, and music by Yasunori Mitsuda remain unmatched.

You can now play Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition on Nintendo Switch, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Steam. Its story focuses on parallel worlds, but Chrono Trigger is a time-traveling epic—available now on Steam, iOS, and Android.

For more Chrono Cross, keep it on Pro Game Guides and check out How to recruit every character in Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition (and how to recruit them).

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About the Author

Hello! I'm a freelance writer with a longtime interest in consoles and a developing passion for retro gaming. Pokémon, Zelda, Final Fantasy, and Mario—these are the games of my past, present, and future, and I'm happy to be able to say that with a fair amount of certainty. Otherwise, maybe you'll find me playing Stardew when I'm not writing my first novel or showering my dog with attention.
Find Tyler Budhram On: Twitter

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Is Chrono Cross a sequel to Chrono Trigger?

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