Chrono Cross Speedruns and Techniques
Welcome to the Chrono Cross Speedrun and Advanced Gameplay Techniques section. Here, the Compendium aims to document the fastest Chrono Cross players alive and the techniques employed to achieve their low times. Other esoteric gameplay information will be presented in addendum, along with pressing issues and possibilities that may shave off even more seconds of playtime. Traditional speedruns are recognized by the Speed Demos Archive, and are videotaped on a console. Emulated speedrun listings also exist, called "tool-assisted speedruns." Emulators are also used for rapidly evaluating new skills and techniques for later application in a traditional attempt. Since a tool-assisted speedrun doesn't exist for Chrono Cross, and since a traditional speedrun has edged out the TAS for Chrono Trigger, the Compendium will cover traditional speedruns. Successful runs have been described as relying on two factors; the first is skill, "that which makes it possible," and the second is luck, "that which makes it happen." Other challenges are presented at end of this area.
Current Record Holders
- World Champion
Kimura Masa on April 22, 2000
Bad Ending - 7:16:01
Good Ending - NA
- U.S. Leader
Wesley 'Molotov' Corron on June 4, 2006
Bad Ending - 7:55:08
Good Ending - 7:59:15
Molotov has reported faster times through emulation, and aims to make a new console run.
Techniques by Chapter
Advanced Gameplay, Possibilities, and Sequence Breaking
- Access the Hydra Marshes Early (New Game +)
Start a New Game+, fight the final boss as soon as possible (Poshul is ok too, I think), get poisoned, and run away. Go to the Hydra Marshes and speak with the guy guarding the entrance. He should say you don't look so well and he'll cure your poison, if I remember correctly. Thing is, Serge steps past the man while doing this...allowing you to roam the Hydra Marshes quite early.
But wait, there's a catch: your path is blocked by two enemies. One is a dwarf on the first screen toward the left, who says some amusing things and you can fight him. He'll pass out when you defeat him, blocking your path in the process. The other enemy is a Beeba, who is in the second screen. If my memory isn't too fuzzy, he'll fight you and then say something about you being mean to him. Either way, he blocks your path.
Other than that, you are free to roam around in those spaces as much as you'd like. When you want to leave, just speak to the man guarding the entrance again (I think).
- Enemies Don't Die from Poison
Simply put, enemies in Chrono Cross cannot die from Poison status. This may be a "duh" fact to some people, but if you InfoScope an enemy who is poisoned and let their HP hit 1, you'll notice it stops draining...even if you defend multiple times. The trick is to use an element (something harmless), which will drain the monster's HP by 7 points instead of 1. This causes the HP stat to rollover and display a totally ridiculous number: 4,294,967,292 or so. Nitrodon (a friend of mine) figured that out, so thanks go to him for that number.
The number is completely for show, since the enemy will still die in a single attack. You also cannot heal the enemy to 0 HP to make a kill, so there's a little fun taken away.
Radical Dreamer: Also, the large number thing is an issue with how C handles numbers. I'm assuming that they programmed the game in C, or a C like language, mind you. Numeric variables in C can be either signed or unsigned, meaning they can be positive or negative, or be only positive, but with a wider range. Since health is always going to be positive, they probably used an unsigned variable for enemy health, and insterted checks to insure that when it went below zero, it would stay at zero. Looks like they missed one.
- New Game + with Maxed Attributes
Kimura Masa on May 9, 2000
Bad Ending - 03:25:12
This time assumes that Kimura maxed out his characters in prior playthroughs. The drastic reduction in time is attributed to the Time Shifter's use; the internal clock of Chrono Cross does not account for the fast-forward function.
- Defeating the Time Devourer in a New Game +
Kimura Masa on May 4, 2000
Developer's Ending - 00:06:09
This time assumes that Kimura maxed out Serge's strength and used a Spectral Swallow, Sunglasses, and two Power Seals.
- One Element Game
On April 1, 2000, Kimura Masa attempted a game involving the use of one Element -- red, of course, to overcome RoyalJelly at some point. This means he would have to rely on physical attacks for most of the game. He maintained a journal of his progress, viewable here.
- Maximum Damage Inflicted
- X-Strike on Aquator - 18573 (Kimura)
- X-Strike on RoyalJelly - 17887 (Kimura)
- X-Strike on RoyalJelly - 16,911 (Molotov)
- Z-Slash on Tutanshaman - 15965 (Kimura)
- X-Strike on Slash - 15498 (Kimura)
- The Speed Demos Archive is the "official" hub of traditional speedruns, where Molotov's playthrough is hosted.
- Ultima Garden is the Japanese speedrun capitol.
- Kimura Masa's site, archived with the Wayback Machine
- Tool-Assisted Speedrun Videos is the place for...tool-assisted speedruns!