This page explains how to use the Chrono Cross to recruit every character in Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition.
Chrono Cross has many characters that you can recruit, but due to choices you make, you cannot recruit every character in a single playthrough.
For the most part, we recommend using Continue Plus, provided you kept a variety of save files during your initial playthrough. Mainly, you want save files:
- Before choosing a guide for Viper Manor near the start of the game.
- After Kid is poisoned, before waking up at Guldove (when the game brings up the main menu for you to save).
- While playing as Lynx and before rescuing Riddel.
- Before fighting the final boss.
If don’t have some (or any of those) saves, we suggest relying on New Game Plus.
Step 1: Recruit all the Viper Manor Guides
If you kept a save before choosing a guide for Viper Manor, load your cleared save file, then Continue Plus into the aforementioned save. Next, recruit one of the two guides you didn’t choose. For example, if you recruited Guile earlier, recruit Nikki or Pierre instead.
After recruiting them, fight the Time Devourer at Opassa Beach to get Ending 2. Overwrite your previous cleared save file, not the one you Continue Plused into. Load the new cleared save file and repeat this step for the last remaining guide.
If you’re playing on New Game Plus, speedrun to the point where you choose a guide for Viper Manor. Recruit one of the two characters you didn’t get. Then obtain Ending 2 in the same manner. Similar to above, overwrite your previous cleared save file. Now begin another New Game Plus (using the updated cleared save file) and recruit the last remaining guide. But continue to the point Kid gets poisoned.
Step 2: Recruit Everyone along the Save Kid Branches
If you kept a save before choosing to save Kid or not, Continue Plus into it, using the newest cleared save file. This should be the one where you recruited all three Viper Manor guides.
Obviously, when you reach the decision to save Kid or not, choose the branch you didn’t go through. For example, if you chose to save her in your first playthrough, choose the other one. Then keep playing till you’ve recruited all three characters along this branch. Once you’re done, beat the Time Devourer to earn Ending 4. Then overwrite your previous cleared save file.
Meanwhile, if you’re on a New Game Plus, you can do the same thing when you reach the decision to save Kid or not, which isn’t too far away. At this point, do not go for an ending until you’ve read Step 3. But if it’s OK, go for Ending 4 like above.
Step 3: Recruit Harle
Hopefully you kept a save when you’re Lynx and before rescuing Riddel, so Harle is still with you. As usual, load up your latest cleared save file and Continue Plus to your Lynx save. Then beat up the Time Devourer to obtain Ending 5.
If you weren’t wise enough to keep a save, after Step 2, keep playing till the end of Fort Dragonia. Soon after, you’ll be thrust into the Temporal Vortex, where Harle will join your party. While Harle is present, you can choose to end the game early by obtaining Ending 5. But only do so if you kept a save near the end of the game!
Step 4: Use the Chrono Cross!
You did keep a save near the end of the game, right? Ideally before fighting the final boss. But anything around Chronopolis or Terra Tower is fine. Otherwise, you’ll have to play through a big chunk of the game until you’re back here again…
If you don’t already have it, go and obtain the Chrono Cross Element. This can be done after Chronopolis.
When you’ve gotten the Chrono Cross, visit Hydra Marshes (Home World) and go north one screen. Look for the dimensional ripple, where you can use the Astral Amulet to return to the Dimensional Vortex.
Back at Sprigg’s house, the Chrono Cross will suddenly react. You can then use the Chrono Cross via the key items menu to obtain all the characters from the cleared save file. If you followed our steps (and didn’t miss anyone in your first playthrough), this should be every character!
Use the Chrono Cross item to recruit all party members.