Obsidian Would Like To Work On Chrono Trigger

By Spencer . July 6, 2010 . 2:21am


“We were talking to Square for quite awhile,” Feargus Urquhart, CEO of Obsidian said while introducing Dungeon Siege 3. “You make RPGs, we make RPGs, it would be great to see what we could do together. And they really wanted to start getting into Western RPGs. And, so it kind of all ended up fitting together.”


Square Enix gave Obsidian the task of reviving the Dungeon Siege series after they purchased the rights to it from Gas Powered Games.


Since Obsidian and Square Enix have been conversing for some time, I asked Urquhart if there was any franchise other than Dungeon Siege 3 they would like to work on.


Urquhart snickered and sarcastically said, “Chocobo Racing.” He followed up with a more serious response, “If I could come across everything that I played I would have to go with Chrono Trigger. I think Chrono Trigger was one I really enjoyed.”


And how would you make Chrono Trigger more of a Western RPG?


“It’s tough because a lot of the Japanese RPGs have very specific functions for everything. There is very specific item progression, very specific class progression, very specific everything. I think… I don’t know I’d have to think about it,” Urquhart pondered.


While I put Urquhart on the spot, Nathan Chapman, Lead Designer, jumped in with an answer. “I think we’re going with Chrono Trigger because it has elements of a Western RPG. It’s more open, it’s still mostly linear, but there are parts you can explore more,” said Chapman. “There are lots of differences, like you can beat Lavos at different parts of the game and you get different endings based on that. There are obvious answers like dialogue trees and all of that good stuff. The seeds are there for that kind of development.”


image “I think it would be fun to take the setting of a Japanese RPG, which is a weird mix of fantasy and sci-fi mashed together and make a Western RPG out of that,” Urquhart chimed in. “I think that would be cool. I mean it’s kind of Star Wars, that’s kind of what Star Wars is a fantasy in space. I think that would be interesting.”


Chapman continued, “In terms of the Japanese RPGs that I find really cool is the style. That’s something that, especially the Japanese Square games, the style permeates everything. The super high production values. The characters…”


“Gigantic swords,” Urquhart cracked.


“Gigantic swords, something we’ve taken from them. All of that stuff is really cool,” Chapman concluded.

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  • ShinGundam

    DO NOT WANT :(

    • sambuque

      Chrono Trigger
      The Time Travel RPG

  • How about no. How about NEVER, in fact. Take your ‘sloppy seconds’ approach to development elsewhere, I say!

  • epy

    How cruel would it be that the first Chrono game in over a decade is a WRPG…

  • urbanscholar

    Oh yes, please do guys so you can give the same treatment as Alpha Protocol.

  • Many many times no. A Western-style Chrono Trigger sequel would just be…wrong. I mean, I enjoyed Fallout 3, but I think that’s more of an exception than the rule for me, as I eventually lost interest in Oblivion and I consider Mass Effect to be more of a shooter than an RPG. I loved the battle systems in Trigger and Cross.

    You know, one of the things I’m loving about Trinity Universe is that there are random turn-based battles. I so miss the old-school style of RPG’s and really wish companies would realize that not everything has to be Westernized.

  • Reimine

    A wester-style chrono trigger would ruin the saga…

    • lostinblue

      And Obsidian at that! I mean, there’s top of the line WRPG developers, such as Bioware and Bethesda… and then there’s the stand-in studio who does leftovers and sequels for pretty much everything and rarely as well… which is Obsidian.

      HELL NO, I’d bitch if it was Bioware too, but seeing Obsidian talking as if they have what it takes to touch this with a stick… quite honestly sickens me.

      Know your place you MORRONS! And Square-Enix leaving this door open… they’re nuts. That and Front Mission being given to other, even more subpar developer.

      • I wouldn’t want this for one of the games that set a bar few other RPGs have hit since. I took issue enough with Square-Enix considering a re-master of it to begin with, but after seeing how Alpha Protocol came out, just no. IF this was to happen, and there was no other way around it, I could live with Bioware if it had to be anyone. Bethesda? No, I can’t imagine playing through Magus’ Castle and having an element of the game suddenly crash out of the blue.

        • cowcow

          lol Bioware. Do you not remember the fail that was Sonic RPG?

          • lostinblue

            it wasn’t nowhere near the fail this would be.Bioware fail due to some poor decisions/pacing and the Sonic Heritance in itself who set them for a fall that great… I mean, sonic is meant to be fast, deep down it’s the same reason why most 3D sonics sucked really.Plus, I think they understimated it.Don’t get me wrong I don’t want them doing Chrono as well, but they’re certainly more competent than Obsidian. Or rather, Obsidian is just incompetent. (a second or third tier studio really)

  • BrotherCavil

    So wait. Chrono Trigger is a Star Wars fantasy in space?

    And someone let these retards develop games?


    • Moriken

      No? He was talking about Japanese RPGs in general.
      The somewhat random mix of SF/technological and magical/fantasy-elements which is typical for about 99,9% of Japanese RPGs, to be specific.
      At least I’m unable to find any other meaning in the article’s sentence structure, syntax, and context.

      • Yeah, I think BrotherCavil misread that part in his zealous effort to respond.

  • Hraesvelgr

    I’d be okay with this, but they would have to keep the “look” of the game. That old fan project did pretty well at translating the game into 3D. Obviously improve the quality of the 3D, but keep the same style of the game. Giving it a more “realistic” look like most Western games would pretty much ruin it for me.

  • lostinblue

    HELL NO!!!!! KEEEP CHRONO TRIGGER AWAY FROM THEM!Jesus Square-Enix, the fact this door seems somewhat open is just mindblowing (damn you wada! you suck as always)If they want to revive chrono trigger and outsource it instead of doing it inhouse… get kato and mitsuda onboard and give/sell/borrow the damn IP to Monolith or something, the Baten Kaitos team will surely treat it better than Square-Enix ever will.But NEVER EVER give it to Obsidian!

    • gatotsu911

      Hell yeah dude, that’s pretty much the best possible scenario I can imagine for a Chrono Trigger sequel. Baten Kaitos was awesome.

  • hmm… is steampunk really a territory WRPGs never stepped into yet? how about cyberpunk?

    • M’iau M’iaut

      Wasteland — the game that started the Fallout family, had a mix of steam and cyberpunk. There was also a somewhat well recieved PC rpg called Magick Obscura about ten years back that specifically covered steampunk.

  • vrakanox

    Personally I really don’t see them being able to do it justice, however, it’s not impossible. I do believe deep down that a western developer really could make a good JRPG but they would have to realize that they have to keep it true to the original. None of this hollywood adaptation BS where they change the entire story just because they “want to”

  • M’iau M’iaut

    Well, all these two guys were able to do is further detail the gaps between the western and eastern entertainment worlds and that neither side really seems to be ‘getting it’.

    He considers Japanese RPGs hard to do because of their ‘specific functions for everything’. It is not necessary to reinvent ‘everything’ everytime out. Western developers/reviewers want to deride because JRPGs are ‘stale’ — that they have not changed. It’s just sir, the changes don’t always need to be on the mechanics side. If you have a formula that works, there is nothing wrong with keeping to said formula; and find other places for change and innovation…..Look here in the west for the same thing, only different, it ain’t like EVERY damn western FPS/action dev doesn’t just license the already hot graphics and movement engines for their own ‘innovative and never before done’ modern/sci-fi pseudo military shooter. And one does not need to go far to find those who think Final Fantasy (which is of course the only JRPG in many western minds) has dropped since the mechanics changes from the traditional turn/strategy mode to the more ‘western friendly’ real time/action mode.

    “I think it would be fun to take the setting of a Japanese RPG, which is a weird mix of fantasy and sci-fi mashed together and make a Western RPG out of that,” …….uuummm isn’t this what you have coming out next month in Fallout New Vegas? The original Fallout — which was done by these same geniuses, remember — certainly owed a lot of its cache to the post apocalyptic worlds of 80s and 90s anime.

    • Hraesvelgr

      …Fallout (the first two, anyway) were inspired by the 80s game Wasteland, which had a fairly similar overall plot/setting.

      • M’iau M’iaut

        Yup….same team (at least for wasteland 1) while they were at EA. Left them and thus Fallout was born. Was actually one of the first situations I remember getting some press about what happens to a specific IP when a dev team leaves a publisher.

    • RupanIII

      Sigh. Too bad they don’t make RPGs in the West like Fallout 1 and 2 anymore. I actually used to play a lot of Western PC games back in the day when everything, wasn’t, as you put so well, “‘innovative and never before done’ modern/sci-fi pseudo military shooter” themed. Everything looks either FPS or MMORPG or hybrid of some sort, both aesthetically and in terms of gameplay. I don’t see how this kind of repetition gets a free pass but traditional Japanese game design gets complained about. I guess as long as a game lets you play as either a badass who shoots people in the head 10,000 times or cast spells as a mystical elf or something then repetition is okay. Maybe it’s just because I’ve been out of the loop for a while, but I think the PC/Western stuff I played back in the day had much more creativity/variety in terms of genre, design and art- the Worms series (before the introduction of the craptacular 3d engine), Railroad Tycoon series, Bad Mojo, Destruction Derby, Fatal Racing, Gubble, lots more I can’t remem..And yes, I’m one of the curmudgeons who absolutely did not take to the 3/New Vegas engine. Even if they’d did a side-story on DS or something with the old engine, maybe they wouldn’t feel such pressure to be graphics whores and actually make a new Fallout with similar gameplay/feel as the first two.

  • cowcow

    lol Chrono and company will look like third world ugly Euro trash

    • M’iau M’iaut

      But at least that would keep them lookin like modern FF characters……

      • cowcow

        How is that a better thing?? Besides the fact that FF character models look infinitely better than any Obsidian or Bioware character models, wouldn’t it make sense to just do Anime cel shaded 3D using Akira Toriyama artwork??

        • M’iau M’iaut

          It isn’t any better, I just forgot to turn on the ‘I am being a sarcastic fool’ sign, sorry. Of course I would prefer an anime style — but remember to western eyes, including one famous review of DQVIII — we can’t have Toriyama artwork, because all of his Dragon Quest characters look like Dragon Ball ones……

          • cowcow

            Sorry my sarcasm detector wasn’t on. And to those Western “DQ fans” that do not want Toriyama artwork…screw them; they aren’t true fans then anyway.

          • lostinblue

            Well that’s true.

            But… as for chrono trigger I actually prefer the guy who did Chrono Cross art, Chrono Trigger Toryama art was really inspired though, unlike some Dragon Quests I’d wager, but still; chrono trigger broke the dependency on him and I think they should go down that path.

            But if they don’t, I’m all for it nonetheless.

          • cowcow

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            Subject: [siliconera] Re: Obsidian Would Like To Work On Chrono Trigger

  • gatotsu911

    I like the idea they describe of taking a JRPG and then having a WRPG developer “adapt” it. But not Chrono Trigger. Not ever.

    • lostinblue

      yeah, could work with some Tri-Ace IP like Star Ocean since they lean towards WRPG stuff but never chrono trigger.

  • Letiumtide

    I still say that it should be cellshaded ala Dragon Quest VIII, making it traditional 3D (even animesque 3D) would really hurt it. To be fair, while it was good for a fan project I didn’t like the 3D the ressurection project did.

    • Aoshi00

      I’m a little tired of cel-shaded though because of all the Dragon ball fighting games. I think a Chrono remake/3/Break w/ 3D models like Blue Dragon would be great, I liked Artoon’s style.

      • lostinblue

        I want something with pre-rendered backgrounds, like Chrono Cross and the stuff monolith recently did with baten kaitos origins.They’re so rich and sadly not all that used anymore :3

        • RupanIII

          Agreed, pre-rendered backgrounds need a comeback. Even today stuff like FFVII’s backgrounds look so crammed with detail and texture.

  • I wont even take the time to comment in something like this.


    • lostinblue

      you just did :P

      o.o seems fitting.

  • Code

    rarr *face palm* seriously it half felt like they were trash talking Square on one hand, and struggling to figure out how to justify actually liking a JRPG on the other. I really hate this superiority complex western RPG developers seem to have, it’s absolutely aggravating to watch. They need to mature, and show should some common decency and respect. Regardless, they really don’t deserve Chrono Trigger at all.

    • lostinblue

      yes, yes… YES! THIS

      (Bioware is the only one of them with a better attitude and even then, it has it’s moments)

      • Except for what’s-his-face, ah… BioWare’s Greg Zeschuk, who likes to periodically make a slack-jawed fool of himself in public statements. As I understand it, one of Chris Avellone’s (he’s one of Obsidian’s writers, right?) favorite games is, in fact, Final Fantasy VII.

        Really, I don’t think it was intended to be disparaging; tongue-in-cheek, perhaps, and it does lend the impression of a lack of familiarity with the Japanese half of the genre, but on a whole I don’t believe Obsidian has a superiority complex.

        Regardless, while I’m sure it’s either wishful thinking or hypothesizing on their part, Chrono Trigger doesn’t belong in their hands. To put a positive spin on this news post, however, I’d love to see their interpretation of the JRPG formula in the form of – God forbid – a new IP.

    • I have a random question, but what is with the “rar” before most of your posts? Are you part-human, part-lion or something? I’m just very curious.

      • Joanna

        I think the ‘rar’ is really cute. Keep it up Code. :3

        and of course, great reply.

  • I don’t see what the big deal is. Yeah Obsidian Fails at game play, blows chunks at it even, but they have written solid stories. None of you can tell me that Planescape: Torment was a horrible story….

    • As it is a Western game, 99% of the users here will not acknowledge it or the fact that it was quite good.

      • It’s one of my favorite games, but that was over a decade ago. I don’t think it’s still redeemable for developer cred.

        Granted, I liked Mask of the Betrayer, but that’s about it.

  • doomspeller10

    LOL they want to revive to Chrono just to overkill it. How about taking FFXIII and making it less linear, or ensuring that FFXIV won’t be as boring as the alpha videos make it look? Please, anything but screwing up Chrono, it’s been one of the unluckiest franchises from Squeenix.

  • DDanny

    It seems some people here think Mass Effect and Oblivion are the only WRPGs in existance.
    Go play things like Planescape:Torment, Baldur’s Gate, Neverwinter Nights, Dragon Age and Fallout before saying western developers cannot make amazing rpgs.

    • Ereek

      Replace Dragon Age with The Witcher, KOTOR, or VM: Bloodlines and I’ll agree with you. Dragon Age was about as cliche as it gets when it comes to WRPGs and the only reason it got acclaim was because it’s a Bioware title.

      • Thank you! I agree completely on Dragon Age. Didn’t care for the Witcher, mind, due to the stilted, bawdy script (even in expanded form), but Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines is awesome and I enjoyed KOTOR.

        I also loved Wizardry 6-8. R.I.P. Sir-Tech. :(

      • DDanny

        True, what I liked most about Dragon Age was the characters, the story is the ever so boring “save the world from army of evil” that seems to plague JRPGs. And yeah I forgot about KOTOR and VTM.

        …But really, the amount of OMG WRPGS suck!!!! in this topic is ever so precious. It would be wonderful if some of you could actually provide some reasons.

  • Hell No,Chrono has been made by the greatest producer,music producer,and character designer,well its my opinion….

    What could be really great is a new Dissidia with character from every Square-Enix series,with Chrono Trigger character in it like Magus,Frog,Robo..

  • thebanditking

    “Obsidian Would Like To Work On Chrono Trigger” And I would like them to stay as far away from it as humanly possible. The developers of such garbage like Alpha Protocol and other mediocre games (never winter nights was so so, and Kotor II was just decent) have no place touching a beloved series like Chrono. I’m sorry I am not usually this brash about things but this irks me, they are hardly known for classic console RPG’s let alone thinking they could possibly handle the proper revival/next chapter of the Chrono series. Chrono, like Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy are not something I feel a western developer could handle. Western RPGs lack many of the story/character development focused aspects that Japanese RPG’s use. Western RPGs are more for dialog trees, sex mini games, and fall either into a Dungeons and Dragons or Star Trek setting. I can’t really explain it but Western developers are just not capable of making games like Chrono Trigger/Chrono Cross or Final Fantasy, part of what made these series great is that they are Japanese in design, removing that cultural element would be disastrous (just look at Front Mission). Im sure I speak for a lot of other people when I say games Like Lunar, Final; Fantasy, and DQ would not be what they are today if not for their Japanese origins. A good point of reference for this, Akira Toriyama’s Dragon Ball series vs the Dragon Ball Origins movie.

  • Those guys need to die in a burning car just for considering making Chrono Trigger a WRPG…

    • Hraesvelgr

      Yes, they should die for wanting to make a game…

  • RupanIII

    “In terms of the Japanese RPGs that I find really cool is the style. That’s something that, especially the Japanese Square games, the style permeates everything. The super high production values. The characters…”

    The style and characters are so cool, so cool we want to change them.

  • sifer2

    Well since Square seems to have no interest in doing anything with the IP I would not be entirely against it. So long as Obsidian doesn’t try to completely reinvent the wheel an turn Chrono Trigger into some kind of FPS. I would want it to stay a turn based RPG. But it could have more of an action feel to it since CT always was a bit more simple an fast. I would just be worried about production values. Whether they would give it the time an money it deserves to be perfect.

    The original Dream Team clearly set out to make a work of art when they did the first one not just to make another game for money. An the question is whether Obsidian would show that same dedication.

  • 311

    Amazingly… NO! that is a masterpiece that should not be messed with.

  • holyPaladin

    How much I want Chrono but NO!!

  • xxx128

    yeah thats alll we need, shitty devs ruining our childhood memories :(

  • Thesuffering

    I think you are grossly underestimating Obsidian. And the didnt make NWN, the made NWN2, MotW for it which was awesome. Alpha Protocol was their first real not so RPG game, so hence why it didnt turn out as good. Also DS3 is looking awesome from most preview impressions. And i have full confidence in Chris Avellone in having good writing for the game if they ever make it.

  • Kunio_kun

    Man, I really have no idea what the hell is going on here… I haven’t played a Western RPG since Pool of Radiance in the 1980’s… I guess I’ll be sticking with J-RPG’s for the next twenty years, too, judging from the popular opinion of these responses…

  • I would also like to work on Chrono Trigger! Does that mean I’m going to do it? No. Let’s not get mad unless they actually announce something…

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