This same shit happened to the people making Bid For Power, the Dragonball Z Quake3 mod which had to be changed to remove all characters of the franchise. A pointless move that, guess what, pissed off the fanbase.
Unfortunately, the folks making this fan-sequel probably advertised their progress too much and the big bad corporations naturally shut their asses down right before it was all done. There is probably some public domain/fair use law that would give them a fighting chance in a courtroom, but of course they’re betting on the modders not being able to afford lawyers. Typical. Damn shame too that SquareEnix is still releasing crap 4 out of 5 times they make a game. That’s right, I admit it. Most of their releases are garbage. I try so damn hard to sound excited when they throw us fans a bone like Final Fantasy IV: The After Years, or Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core, then the come out with another “Mana series” abortion– that series used to be good too until they failed to U.S. release the arguably best of the series (Sieken Densetsu 3) and then just shit all over the franchise from Legend of Mana onward. They’ll probably just make a Chrono Cross 2 and call it an “alternate dimension gaiden” and piss off their fanbase again for the XXth time.
I’d really like to say they should release it anyway and claim theft of their work and deny allegations toward leaking it themselves and say ‘What are they going to do? Claim loss of revenues? On what? We’ve been waiting for a sequel for more than ten years.’ Because they’ve had plenty of time to do this themselves. But those guys are in a tough spot when they knew how to find the modders and can take them to court if they get the ass-itch to do it.
I mean, Final Fantasy 5 finally got a fan translation (practically the first ever) after three separate localization projects got canceled by Square. Seriously, if they can’t do their own damn jobs, and listen to the overwhelming market pull of the fans who want to throw their money at them, the fans may as well do it themselves.
Let me be the first to officially submit, as the owner of this primarily editorial gaming-journalism news site, that you, SquareEnix, as an entity, are an asshole. You are simultaneously alienating your fan base and sullying the integrity of those very people as well as the integrity of your craft. Excuses be damned, whatever you have “coming down the pipes” for future releases, be they an actual Chrono Trigger sequel or not, you’ve had plenty of time to do it without wasting ours with two re-releases and a pseudo-sequel that did little more than waste our time and money. You know damn well that in no way would a project like this or any others detract from the sales of an actual sequel, because we’ve been screaming for one for so damn long we’d have to buy it just to not feel like idiots for demanding it so hard, even if it was absolutely intolerable!
If you value your reputation, SquareEnix, I highly suggest you reverse this decision, and release these hard-working fans from your legal tyranny. For at this point it is twice as likely that something like this is going to be leaked out of spite toward you, or worse yet, your next release will probably be bashed and pirated to hell out of resentment; and I won’t shed a fucking tear. You’ve destroyed years of hard work which was not for profit and was, above all else, art.
SquareEnix, you should be ashamed.