Chrono Trigger: To Far Away Times (Pt. 4)

Hope for the future.

Having successfully conquered the Mountain of Woe, we returned to the harsh frozen islands below the Kingdom of Zeal. It was there that we were offered the chance to destroy the Mammon Machine. Not only would this allow us to defeat the corrupted Queen Zeal, but it could potentially prevent Lavos from destroying the world. The only problem with this plan is gaining access to the Ocean Palace. Dalton would be the first to try and stop us, but his failure merely opened the door to the undersea fortress. It’s hilarious to think that he’s most useful when he’s not intending to be.

Especially when he modifies the Epoch.

He thinks that the theft is an inconvenience but it’s really the greatest favour he could have done for us. With his modifications I’ll finally have access to the remaining side quests and the legendary equipment, which is where utilising the time travel mechanics correctly yields even greater rewards.

But before we can consider such bountiful endeavours we must explore the labyrinthine halls of the Ocean Palace. Wherein great treasures can be found and even greater opposition can be encountered. Having a fresh save file means that I’ll need to pay careful attention to both enemies and bosses, as they can retaliate with devastating damage if you’re not careful. It wasn’t as challenging as I would’ve expected it to be, though. But that seems to be a recurring theme at the moment. I can remember most details vividly, but it seems that I can’t recall how long or complicated certain areas are. As they always seem shorter and less complex than prior experience would suggest. Then again, I haven’t actually finished Chrono Trigger for many years. So it’s to expected that some details would be hazy.

Myriad magical beasts infest the Ocean Palace.

Unable to stop the resurrection of Lavos we suffered an immeasurable loss when foolishly challenging its colossal power. When speaking to the remnants of a civilisation crippled by an otherworldly entity, we realised that the world below had mostly sunk into the sea. Then Dalton arrived and captured us to hold us prisoner on the Blackbird. Anyone with any sense would’ve executed us. We’ve slain countless foes and even defeated Dalton himself before. But he is rather kindly upgrading the Epoch for us, which means I’ll enjoy his hospitality and climb around in the vents on his ship.

Reacquiring our equipment one chest a time.

Before ultimately taking the Epoch with its enhanced flight capabilities all the way to the End of Time. Then onto 2300 A.D. as we are finally ready to climb Death Peak, but before we do we’ll need to pay a visit to the Keeper’s Dome. As the howling wind can be treacherous on that icy mountain.

Successfully climbing to the summit of Death Peak concludes one of the greatest (and most ambitious) quests that I’ve had the pleasure to experience. It was a bold move to introduce the quest as they did, but to allow you to reverse the events and bring the party back together was truly something special. I’ve seen few other video games willing to utilise such mechanics. Which is unfortunate, as the events surrounding Death Peak are one of the reasons that I consider Chrono Trigger to be the greatest JRPG I’ve ever played. It’s also entirely optional. You’ve no obligation to actually do this quest, and can instead head straight towards the final dungeon and the eventual confrontation with Lavos. Which makes it even more ambitious. As you make the choice whether it’s worth doing or not.

Have a nice weekend, all!

Moggie

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