Chrono Trigger fan art by Julie Dillon

The 8 Craziest Japanese RPG Fan Theories

From dead Squall to post-war Kanto, you’ll never look at Final Fantasy VIII, Pokemon, or Chrono Trigger the same ever again.

Aidan Moher
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Published in
19 min readMay 26, 2020

Who doesn’t love a good fan theory?

(Besides George R.R. Martin because it makes finishing his series so much more difficult.)

Fans have been speculating about their favourite books, films, and TV shows for decades, and gaming is no different. From theories about Majora’s Mask and the five stages of grief, to the indoctrination of Mass Effect’s Commander Shepard, to companion cubes being full of people, there’s no shortage of crazy theories concocted by fans to fill plot holes.

Japanese RPGs like the Final Fantasy series and Masato Kato’s work on Chrono Cross and Xenogears offer some of the most complex stories in gaming, rivalling even epic fantasy novels in pure word count. These huge worlds and twisting stories are ripe for fan theories, and the Internet has not disappointed over the past two decades.

I’ve gathered several of my favourite fan theories about Japanese RPGs — from fun speculation about secret identities to truly canon-altering stuff that makes A Song of Ice and Fire theories look like child’s play.

This article contains spoilers for Chrono Trigger, Chrono Cross, Final Fantasy VI, Final Fantasy VII, Final Fantasy VIII, Final Fantasy X, Pokemon Blue/Red, Suikoden II, and Suikoden III.

Final Fantasy VII and Final Fantasy X are set in the same universe

Screenshot via Inverse

While the Final Fantasy series is known for reusing names all the time between games, (Hello, Cid!), this long-running rumour based on a minor character in Final Fantasy X-2 named Shinra was confirmed by Kitase in 2017!

“I won’t completely come out and say that it is the same world,” Kitase said. “However.” Final Fantasy X-2’s scenario designer Kazushige Nojima liked the idea that Shinra would “grow up and start the Shinra company.”



Aidan Moher
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Hugo Award-winning writer ft. in WIRED, Washington Post, and Kotaku, and author of "Fight, Magic, Items." He lives on Vancouver Island with his wife and kids.