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Chrono Break is the name of a trademark registered by Squaresoft (now Square Enix) in the United States on December 5, 2001 that was later abandoned. A similar trademark was registered by the company in the European Union on December 14, 2001, while the trademark Chrono Brake was registered in Japan. Although no official announcement was made, the trademark sparked speculation that Square was working on a new game in the Chrono series. Since the trademark was registered, however, many of the people who worked on the other games in the series departed Square, and the trademark was allowed to expire in the United States on November 13, 2003; the European Union trademark is set to expire on December 14, 2011; and the Japanese trademark is set to expire on July 26, 2012. Although fan interest remains high for a sequel and a remake of Chrono Trigger has been made, no announcements have been made by Square Enix either supporting or rejecting the idea of making another sequel.
The registration followed a press report of talks about a new Chrono series game. Within this report, Hironobu Sakaguchi mentioned that the team of Chrono Cross, especially Masato Kato, was interested in developing a new game in the series, and that script and story ideas were currently being considered. The project had not been greenlighted. Kato had previously mentioned in the Ultimania guide for Chrono Cross that he wanted to create a direct sequel to Chrono Trigger to wrap up certain story elements and plot threads, and that the pitfalls of a direct sequel prompted them to do Chrono Cross instead. While Squaresoft did not publish any official news, this registration led many in the video game community to believe that a sequel to the Chrono Trigger and Chrono Cross was in full development. However, Masato Kato and others who worked on Chrono Cross—such as Yasuyuki Honne—meanwhile departed the company, mainly for Monolith Soft, and Squaresoft published no news concerning a sequel. On November 13, 2003, the trademark was dropped in the United States. It is set to expire on December 14, 2011 in the European Union, and on July 26, 2012 in Japan.
Fan inquiry over a new title was subsequently large enough to warrant an entry in Square Enix's FAQ page, in which the company noted that no new game was in development, though this did not mean the series was dead. In 2006, the entry was revised to include sequel inquiries for any series. A similar trademark was registered in 2001 by Square Enix in Japan as Chrono Brake (クロノ・ブレイク), which is still registered. After the release of Chrono Cross, a number of key staff from the title left Squaresoft to form a new development studio, Monolith Soft, which was initially owned by Namco and is currently a first-party developer working under Nintendo. Other staff who had worked on the title remained at Squaresoft and proceeded to work on Final Fantasy XI, a MMORPG. During an interview at E³ 2003, this development team stated that they would love to develop a new Chrono game, but their commitment to Final Fantasy XI would keep them busy for a long time. Hironobu Sakaguchi (one of Chrono Trigger's creators) pitched the idea of an MMORPG to Squaresoft while working on Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within. As Richard Honeywood explained,
Takashi Tokita, who directed Chrono Trigger, mentioned a "Chrono Trigger 2" in a 2003 interview which has not been translated to English. Trigger developer Yuji Horii expressed no interest in returning to the Chrono franchise in 2005. In February 2007, Square Enix producer Hiromichi Tanaka took part in several interviews while promoting games in Europe. Tanaka reiterated that no new game was in development, but that a return was certainly not out of the question.
In January 2008, composer Yasunori Mitsuda remarked that "there are a lot of politics involved" in creating a new game, and stressed that Masato Kato should participate in development should a new entry in the series materialize.
Signs of life
Hopes for a sequel were raised when Masato Kato returned to Square Enix to work on games of the World of Mana project. In an interview at a PLAY! concert in May 2006, Yasunori Mitsuda stated an interest in composing for a new game in the series. These hopes were padded by the good working relationship between Kato and Mitsuda, as the two collaborated to release kiЯitɘ, an album complemented by a storybook. In September 2005, Kato and Mitsuda again teamed up to do a game called Deep Labyrinth for the Nintendo DS. Mitsuda also announced in 2005 that a new Chrono Cross arranged album was in the works; as of May 2006, it was tentatively "out within the year", and as of June 2008 it still has not been released. These factors, combined with Square Enix's recent polls that list Chrono Trigger as an option for game porting to handheld systems (it has since been released on the Nintendo DS), suggested that interest in the Chrono series has not completely dwindled at the company and that a new iteration may eventually be made, though no news or even rumors of such exist as of the beginning of 2010. Fans continue to write letters and e-mails to both Square Enix USA and Japan headquarters requesting Chrono Break. The February 2008 issue of Game Informer ranked the Chrono series eighth among the "Top Ten Sequels in Demand", naming the games "steadfast legacies in the Square Enix catalogue" and asking "what's the damn holdup?!". In Electronic Gaming Monthly's June 2008 "Retro Issue", writer Jeremy Parish cited Chrono as the franchise video game fans would be most thrilled to see a sequel to. In the first May Famitsu of 2009, Chrono Trigger placed 14th out of 50 in a vote of most-wanted sequels by the magazine's readers. At E3 2009, SE Senior Vice President Shinji Hashimoto remarked "If people want a sequel, they should buy more!".
- ↑ Latest Status Info. Trademark Applications and Registration Retrieval (2003-11-13). Retrieved on 2006-06-01.
- ↑ OAMI-ONLINE - CTM-ONLINE - Trade mark consultation service (2002-12-02). Retrieved on 2010-05-12. To find the Chrono Break trademark, search "Trade mark name" for "chrono break".
- ↑ Shahed Ahmed (2001-07-03). New Chrono game in planning stages. GameSpot. Retrieved on 1 July 2006.
- ↑ Studio BentStuff, ed (1999) (in Japanese). Chrono Cross Ultimania. Square Enix. pp. 476–477. ISBN 4-925075-73-X. http://www.chronocompendium.com/Term/Ultimania_Developer_Interviews.html. Retrieved 2009-10-02.
- ↑ Does SQUARE ENIX have any plans to develop a sequel to Chrono Cross?
A sequel to Chrono Cross is not in development. This doesn't mean we will never make a sequel. However, resources are being focused on other titles at this moment. Keep an eye on our Press Release page to keep up with current information on upcoming titles from SQUARE ENIX. Support FAQ. Square Enix. Archived from the original on 2005-04-18 Retrieved on 2006-08-01.
- ↑ Japanese Trademark and Patent Office (2002-07-26). Retrieved on 2006-07-24. To find the Chrono Brake patent, search "Japanese Trademark Database" for "chronobrake". Click Index to find the result, and click the link.
- ↑ Jeremy Dunham (2003-05-14). E3 2003: Final Fantasy XI Developer Interview. IGN. Retrieved on 23 December 2006.
- ↑ 【ゲームな人々】第11回 長きに渡って活躍する凄腕プロデューサー 時田貴司氏(後編) (2003-07-16). Archived from the original on 2006-03-07 Retrieved on 2008-01-15.
- ↑ Alex Fraioli, Sam Kennedy (2005-12-02). Dragon Quest vs. America. 1up.com. Archived from the original on 2008-01-15 Retrieved on 2007-10-01.
- ↑ Interview vidéo Final Fantasy III. Jeux-France.com (2002-01-31). Retrieved on 2007-02-02.
- ↑ Adam Riley (2002-02-01). Hiromichi Tanaka, Square Enix. Cubed3.com. Retrieved on 2007-02-02.
- ↑ Yasunori Mitsuda (2008-01-28). Radical Dreamer: Yasunori Mitsuda Interview from 1UP.com. 1UP.com. Retrieved on 2008-02-08.
- ↑ Bryan Boulette (2005-10-03). Children of Mana Team Announced. RPGamer. Retrieved on 24 July 2006.
- ↑ 14.0 14.1 Brandon Daiker (2006-05-30). PLAY! A Video Game Symphony: Chicago Interviews. N-Sider. Retrieved on 1 July 2006.
- ↑ Deep Labyrinth (DS) Screenshots, Games Are Fun. Retrieved July 2, 2006.
- ↑ Chrono Break Request Form. Chrono Compendium. Retrieved on 2 July 2006.
- ↑ Game Informer staff (February 2008). Game Informer. GameStop Corporation. pp. 24–25.
- ↑ Jeremy Parish (June 2008). Electronic Gaming Monthly Retro Issue: Missing in Action. Ziff Davis Inc.. p. 95.
- ↑ "Famitsu Readers Vote Their Most Wanted Sequels". Famitsu. May 2009. http://www.ps3hyper.com/news/famitsu-readers-voted-their-most-wanted-sequels/. Retrieved 2009-10-02.
- ↑ Donaldson, Alex (2009-06-05). Square: Want more Chrono Trigger? Buy More!. Retrieved on 2009-06-15.
- US Patent and Trademark Office Entry for Chrono Break
- Sample English & Japanese letters requesting a new game