Chrono Trigger owned by Square-Enix. 
Images used for educational purposes only.
A large part of Chrono Trigger’s novelty lies in its multiple endings. On your first trip through the game you’re likely to get the ‘standard’ ending, but when you begin a New Game + you’ll have the equipment and the skills to bring down Lavos at virtually any point. This will open up the possibility of defeating Lavos at various points in the game, and depending on when you bring Lavos down, you may wind up with a different ending. This list covers the endings, and how you get to each one.

1.) Beyond Time

The standard ending. Defeat Lavos at any point after the rise of the Ocean Palace. You need to save Crono to get this ending. You can alter this ending slightly by choosing to kill Magus, saving Lucca’s mother, smashing into Lavos with the Epoch, and saving Guardia’s chancellor from Yakra’s locked chest.

2.) Reunion

Defeat Lavos without saving Crono. Not collecting the Time Egg from Gaspar at the End of Time slightly changes this ending.

3.) The Dream Project

Defeat Lavos by using the warp from the telepod at the beginning of the game. You must do this before going back in time to 600 AD, and thus you can only get it with a team of Crono and Marle… or Crono alone. 

4.) The Successor of Guardia

Defeat Lavos via the telepod Gate after returning from 600 AD but before you reach the End of Time. In essence, you need to defeat Lavos before returning Marle to Guardia Castle.

5.) Good Night

Defeat Lavos before travelling to 600 AD and learning about Tata, the legendary hero of the age.

6.) The Legendary Hero

Defeat Lavos after learning about Tata but before defeating Masa & Mune and claiming the Hero’s Badge from Tata.

7.) The Unknown Past

Defeat Lavos after receiving the Hero’s Badge but before the events of your first trip to 65,000,000 BC. You can still get this ending until the Gate Key is stolen by the Reptites.

8.) People of the Times

Defeat Lavos after returning from 65,000,000 BC but before you recruit Frog with the Masamune.

9.) The Oath

Defeat Lavos after recruiting Frog, but before you raid the Fiendlord’s Keep and fight Magus.

10.) Dino Age

Defeat Lavos after defeating Magus, but before you raid the Tyranno Lair and fight Azala.

11.) What the Prophet Seeks

Defeat Lavos once you have access to 12,000 BC, but before you make your way through the Ocean Palace. The only exception to this timeline is the next ending.

12.) Memory Lane

Defeat Lavos once you’ve seen Schala open the sealed door to the queen’s room in Zeal Palace, but before you charge up Marle’s Pendant via the Mammon Machine. You have a very small frame of time to collect this ending.

13.) Dream’s Epilogue

Defeat the Dream Devourer. To fight the Dream Devourer you need to be playing on a New Game + / a completed file where you’ve beaten Lavos once, then finish the three Dimensional Vortexes in 12,000 BC, 1000 AD, and 2300 AD. This ending is exclusive to Chrono Trigger DS and any subsequent ports.

Bad Ending

Not listed. Lose to Lavos at any point, save during the battle in the Ocean Palace, to get this ending. What a downer.