Melchior and Schala discuss their limited options in the Earthbound Village of 12,000 BC
Chrono Trigger owned by Square-Enix.
Images used for educational purposes only.

Zeal Palace, 12,000 BC

- After the cut scenes are done in the Earthbound Village, speak to Melchior. He’ll give you a Ruby Knife. 

- Leave the village and head up to Zeal Palace. If you have lots of money to spend, pay a visit to Kajar and talk to the Nu merchant. So long as you tell him that you’re not carrying Schala’s pendant, he’ll sell you a wide variety of high-power arms and armour. You need a lot of gil to pay for this stuff, and the weapons, at least, aren’t worth the effort unless you’re an extreme completionist.

- This next area is the last major section of 12,000 BC as you know it. If you haven’t thoroughly explored Enhasa or Kajar, do not proceed into the Palace until you’ve done so.

- Head into the throne room where you were captured previously, saving on the way. Inside…

The team faces Dalton, the blowhard advisor of Queen Zeal and defender of the Ocean Palace in 12,000 BC


Yep, you finally get to fight this snothead. Dalton is similar to his Golem in that he reacts to your attacks, though unlike the Golem he always uses the same stupid attack: Iron Sphere. It will cut your HP in half. Get him down to zero HP and Dalton will use a Burping attack that’ll inflict 150ish HP of damage on everyone, which is only dangerous if you never bothered to heal during the fight. Pull out your strongest, most accurate Techs and go to town on him. He only has 3,500 HP, so this battle won’t take long even if you only use normal attacks on Dalton. Silly, silly fight.

- Behind Dalton is a special gate. Use it to descend…

The team battles cyclopean fliers in the Ocean Palace, circa 12,000 BC

The Ocean Palace

- Now it gets serious. You’ll find a save point and a quick cut scene to the south. That done, head into the bulk of the Ocean Palace.

- The first section of the Ocean Palace is somewhat free-roaming, though you have to see most of it to proceed to the next area. Start by taking a right and through the nearest doorway. Beyond you’ll find a blue button on the floor; step on it to fight a Djinn and a Ghul. Take out the Ghul first.

- Next door to the right you’ll find two Red Scouters and a Zealot Mage. Scouters are vulnerable only to magic that matches their colour (Fire for Red, Water for Blue, Lightning for Yellow), so attack accordingly. The Mages are only middy annoying, and can be destroyed with normal attacks. Check the chest in this room for an Aeonian Helm.

- You can walk through the left wall. Wander south, grab the Aeonian Suit along the way, kill the Scouters if you feel like it, and go through the next door you see. There are two Blue Scouters beyond.

- Head south in this room, check the chest on your left for a Kaiser Arm, and fight or avoid the Scouters on the platform further south. To the west is a blue switch; step on it and continue west. Check south as soon as you leave the east-west bridge to find a Sonic Bow in a chest.

- Return to the main area and check the west side, starting in the north. The step is basically the same as in the east. The second smaller room here contains an Empyrean Blade, the lowest room contains a Shockwave, and if you skirt around the western platform in the large, bottom room you can find a Demonslayer in a chest, accessible via a hidden passage in the wall.

The team battles several Monks in the Ocean Palace of 12,000 BC

- Head back to the central chamber and take the southern passage. Beyond is a room with two Scouters, a Monk, and stairs on the left. Go down the stairs to face two Monks and two Zealot Mages, then keep descending to face (potentially, if you’re not careful) four more Monks. There are scads more Monks, as well as a few Warriors, to face before you hit the bottom of these stairs. A cut scene waits.

- In the next room is a save point guarded by a Djinn and a Ghul. To the south you’ll wind up on a elevator, and when you begin to descend you’ll have to face off against a series of battles against enemies you’ve already seen a few times by now. There are lots of Scouters that require spell-slinging, so you’ll want to use a Shelter on the save point to restore any MP you’re missing.

- At the bottom you’ll be facing a chasm you can’t cross. To the right and the left you’ll find small chambers populated by Scouters; you know how to kill these little pests by now. Pull the switches in these rooms to create a bridge across the centre of the middle room which you can cross.

- Straight ahead is a chest containing an Elixir, a save point, and a door. Save, heal, choose your strongest element, gird yourself against that element, and step through the door. Time for a very painful battle.

Crono, Lucca, and Ayla take on the Golem Sisters, the final (beatable) bosses in the Ocean Palace

Golem Sisters

Remember that Golem you fought back at Zeal Palace? Now there’s two of ‘em. The Golem Sisters are exactly the same as the previous Golem, using elemental attacks based on your own attacks and otherwise attacking with Iron Sphere (halves HP) and a normal, fire-slinging strike (which is, in fact, non-elemental, despite how it looks). Fighting one can be annoying; fighting two is a pain… unless you know what you’re doing.

The key to winning this battle is to stick with one element throughout. If you haven’t been popping open black chests with your Pendant then you probably only have Ruby Vests, which will do as far as resisting fire damage goes. Pop them on, put Lucca in your team, use Fire II to get both Golems using fire attacks, then have Lucca perform Dual Techs with a dedicated fighter while your third member handles the healing. Crono and Lucca will potentially know Fire Sword II by now, and several uses of this move can wreck a Golem in short order. When one is gone the other shouldn’t prove to be a huge threat. If you did collect elemental vests, suit up as appropriate and use your most powerful elemental attack in one field to wreck the Sisters.

As long as you avoid switching attacks from one element, this is not a difficult fight. The Golem Sisters don’t do much damage unless they’re performing non-elemental attacks. Keep your HP high enough to handle a burping attack after beating each Golem and survival won’t be a major issue.

Once you beat the Golem Sisters… well… a lot happens. There’s one more boss fight to face in the Ocean Palace, though it’s a pretty sure bet that you won’t win.

The Prophet, standing before Lavos itself, prepares to reveal his true identity in the final moments of the Ocean Palace, shortly before 12,000 BC changes forever


… oh dear. This version of Lavos is designed to be stronger than normal, and the chances of you surviving Lavos’ first attack on a normal play through Chrono Trigger are slim to nil. Don’t worry, the game will continue whether you live or die - though if by some miracle you can beat Lavos, you’ll be on the way to seeing an alternate ending. Yay!

(But you won’t live. So don’t worry about it.)