Awesome Video Game Music: Time's Scar

If you know anything about my video game music tastes, you know that Chrono Cross’ soundtrack is one of my personal favorites. And if you know anything about said soundtrack, you know that Time’s Scar is its pinnacle track, and is completely amazing.
  

  
Time’s Scar is the opening song in Chrono Cross, and does a great job at setting up what the game is all about. It’s major theme focuses on how making choices in the present can create and/or destroy any number of futures. As such, the song’s title itself is perfect. Many of the game’s big moments wreak all sorts of havoc on various time-lines, ripping them apart to create or destroy futures- “scarring” time, if you will. These kinds of events keep the many dimensions of the world in tumultuous states, and this is represented wonderfully in the song’s progression. The beginning of the song is relaxed, and seems to be at peace with the world. But it doesn’t take long for things to take a sharp left turn. About halfway through the song ramps up noticeably, and seems to represent the chaos and confusion that might come with such profound distortions in time. It’s a rambunctious, action-oriented segment that does a fantastic job at simulating how one might feel when their world as they know it is quickly unraveling, while remaining consistent with the musical motifs and instrumentation of the rest of the soundtrack.

In fact, those motifs and instrumentation are some of my favorite things about the Chrono Cross soundtrack as a whole, and that’s particularly true in Time’s Scar. Simply put, this is absolutely beautiful music that’s a pleasure to listen to. It’s technically proficient and artistically brilliant, and does a great job at guiding your emotions. I also really like the melancholy tone of it all. It matches the general vibe of the game generated through the the story, characters, and world extremely well. Sure, Chrono Cross’ narrative certainly has its grandiose moments that could lend themselves to an epic musical score, but the majority of the soundtrack, including Time’s Scar (you know, the pinnacle track), manages to remain relatively low key. This goes a long way towards emphasizing the more intricate, personal characteristic that I feel is Chrono Cross’ biggest strength. Amidst all the high impact time distorting craziness, a lot of focus seems to be placed on the individual characters, and how their personal decisions shape their own futures. It makes for a pretty compelling game that’s surprisingly mature, and the soundtrack is just as much so. I think Time’s Scar represents these ideas as well as any song could hope to do.

One of the main things that stands out to me whenever I think about Chrono Cross is how it’s a mature game that has a lot of heart, and in no aspect is that more clear than its soundtrack, the pinnacle of which is Time’s Scar. Someone with a lot of talent put a ton of time and effort into making a beautiful song that expertly buoys the game’s central themes. I couldn’t ask for more in a video game soundtrack, which is why I adore Time’s Scar so much.
 
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Posted by MajorMitch

If you know anything about my video game music tastes, you know that Chrono Cross’ soundtrack is one of my personal favorites. And if you know anything about said soundtrack, you know that Time’s Scar is its pinnacle track, and is completely amazing.
  

  
Time’s Scar is the opening song in Chrono Cross, and does a great job at setting up what the game is all about. It’s major theme focuses on how making choices in the present can create and/or destroy any number of futures. As such, the song’s title itself is perfect. Many of the game’s big moments wreak all sorts of havoc on various time-lines, ripping them apart to create or destroy futures- “scarring” time, if you will. These kinds of events keep the many dimensions of the world in tumultuous states, and this is represented wonderfully in the song’s progression. The beginning of the song is relaxed, and seems to be at peace with the world. But it doesn’t take long for things to take a sharp left turn. About halfway through the song ramps up noticeably, and seems to represent the chaos and confusion that might come with such profound distortions in time. It’s a rambunctious, action-oriented segment that does a fantastic job at simulating how one might feel when their world as they know it is quickly unraveling, while remaining consistent with the musical motifs and instrumentation of the rest of the soundtrack.

In fact, those motifs and instrumentation are some of my favorite things about the Chrono Cross soundtrack as a whole, and that’s particularly true in Time’s Scar. Simply put, this is absolutely beautiful music that’s a pleasure to listen to. It’s technically proficient and artistically brilliant, and does a great job at guiding your emotions. I also really like the melancholy tone of it all. It matches the general vibe of the game generated through the the story, characters, and world extremely well. Sure, Chrono Cross’ narrative certainly has its grandiose moments that could lend themselves to an epic musical score, but the majority of the soundtrack, including Time’s Scar (you know, the pinnacle track), manages to remain relatively low key. This goes a long way towards emphasizing the more intricate, personal characteristic that I feel is Chrono Cross’ biggest strength. Amidst all the high impact time distorting craziness, a lot of focus seems to be placed on the individual characters, and how their personal decisions shape their own futures. It makes for a pretty compelling game that’s surprisingly mature, and the soundtrack is just as much so. I think Time’s Scar represents these ideas as well as any song could hope to do.

One of the main things that stands out to me whenever I think about Chrono Cross is how it’s a mature game that has a lot of heart, and in no aspect is that more clear than its soundtrack, the pinnacle of which is Time’s Scar. Someone with a lot of talent put a ton of time and effort into making a beautiful song that expertly buoys the game’s central themes. I couldn’t ask for more in a video game soundtrack, which is why I adore Time’s Scar so much.
 
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Posted by ESREVER

Oh my goodness! I am ashamed to say that I have not had the opportunity to play Chrono Cross, but that track was beautiful. 
Again, your analyzed look of the song matches the context very well. 
 
The last half of the song gives me a .hack://SIGN OST vibe. Which is a very good thing, because that anime is one of my top favorite shows because of the music. 
Thanks for these detailed looks of these wonderful songs.

Edited by cnlmullen

This is such a perfect example of how huge an influence songs have on the feel and personality of games. I can close my eyes and hear this song, without seeing anything Chrono Cross related, and remember how it felt to play the game. It's an ethereal sort of thing.

Posted by MajorMitch
@ESREVER:  Thanks again for the kind words! If you enjoy video game music, Chrono Cross would be one of my highest recommendations. I've never played any of the .hack games, but the few songs I've heard from them are great!
Posted by FunExplosions

Aw man. This is one of the many fantastic PSX games that I rented, played, loved, and then had the disc stop working on me. I got up to some big town or something, and... was a party member poisoned? Anyway, I eventually forgot about it, and have yet to play it. FF VII and Legend of Dragoon suffered the same fate. Fuck the people who scratch games up. Every time I see people put discs face-down on something, I get so angry. 
 
Ahem. 
 
Awesome blog again. And awesome song. I really need to play this game...