The party explores Earthbound Village shortly after destroying the Blackbird in 12,000 BC
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Earthbound Village, 12,000 BC

- After destroying the Blackbird you’ll wind up back near the remains of the Earthbound Village. Have a look around, if you wish, and check out the Nu and his new wares. You may notice a weapon no one in the party can use. Hrm.

- You can’t use the Epoch right now, so after saving and healing, head to the North Cape, a small area on the northern end of the island. You may be facing a battle in a few moments, and the nature of the battle changes depending on whether or not you have Frog in the party. I highly recommend putting magic resistant armour on either way.

- Check the glittering item resting on the Cape. A lengthy cut scene that explains a lot follows. After that… you need to make a very important choice.

The party encounters Magus on the Northern Cape in 12,000 BC, and learn just who he really is


Once the all-powerful Magus is done telling his story, he’ll challenge you to a fight. Unlike the last one, you can choose to turn him down - and if you do, he’ll join your party. Magus is a pretty rocking party member, and though he’s incapable of performing Double and Triple Techs with his teammates under most circumstances (presumably because he’s an antisocial jerk), he’ll come in real handy in virtually every battle from this point on.

If you decide to fight Magus, well… time to rumble. The battle changes depending on who’s in your party; if it’s anybody but Frog, you’ll have three party members. If Frog’s around, though, he’ll take on Magus solo. (Coolest fight ever.) 

Magus with Frog

If you decide to battle Magus with just Frog you’ll be facing a somewhat tricksy fight. Having lost much of his magic, Magus nevertheless retains his second tier elemental spells, and he likes smacking Frog around with physical attacks on a regular basis. Fortunately, Frog will be a fair bit stronger this time around, and can handle Magus alone. Keep your health high with items and spells and use your strongest Techs to whittle away at Magus’s copious amounts of HP. He doesn’t have his absorption abilities this time, so you can use whatever attacks you like from the get-go.

Magus without Frog

Don’t have Frog in your party? This battle’s an absolute breeze. Magus has lots of HP, but he can’t dish out enough damage to be a serious threat unless you completely neglect your health. Use your strongest Dual Techs to rip him to pieces.

(This battle seems rather variable. In some cases Magus will unleash his magic rather quickly. In others he may ping weakly at you with physical attacks until you kill him. Lame. Hopefully you get a satisfying brawl.)

- Kill Magus and he’ll leave the Amulet behind for you to grab. Recruit him and he’ll have it equipped. Either way, head back to the Epoch and climb in. A cut scene follows, and you now have a new fixture in the sky: the Black Omen. This is basically Chrono Trigger’s final dungeon, though you don’t need to enter it to beat the game.

Riding in the Epoch, the party (with Magus!) watches as the Black Omen materializes in 12,000 BC - and most other time periods

The Rest of the Game

You’ve now arrived at a crossroads of sorts. With a winged Epoch you can fly to, and explore, every time period in the game. You can even use it to bypass the first phase of the Lavos battle, though if you’re not strong enough to fight Lavos’s shell you won’t have a hope of beating its core components. Everything besides beating Lavos, in short, is now optional. You can do as you please… and that even includes not resurrecting Crono. 

Want to explore the rest of what Chrono Trigger has to offer? Then read on. Just bear in mind that you can move through the rest of the game in whatever order you wish. This walkthrough will be compiled in such a way, however, that you proceed from the least difficult quests to the most difficult.