Dragon Quest Monsters Synthesizer Suite & Original Soundtrack

Dragon Quest Monsters Synthesizer Suite & Original Soundtrack Album Title:
Dragon Quest Monsters Synthesizer Suite & Original Soundtrack
Record Label:
Sony Records
Catalog No.:
Release Date:
October 31, 1998
Buy Used Copy


Dragon Quest’s music popularity has increased in recent years. Thanks to the vast community of video game music lovers on the Internet, many people have begun to appreciate Koichi Sugiyama’s compositions. While he is hailed as the composer who changed the face of video game music in Japan, his works have only recently received considerable attention internationally, surprising considering he has worked in the field for decades and is even more popular than Nobuo Uematsu in Japan. This is due to Enix America’s poor marketing of Dragon Quest franchises from Japan, which ultimately caused them to lose the battle of popularity with Final Fantasy. An apt reflection of popularity of the series in Japan, however, are spinoffs such as the Torneko and Monsters games. One of the first, Dragon Quest Monsters: Terry’s Wonderland, hybridises the Dragon Quest universe with a monster-breeding game met in Dragon Quest V, which allowed players to keep the monsters they encountered.

This album contains 15 tracks of Dragon Quest Monster music in two versions; the first 15 tracks of the albums constitute the synthesizer suite — sequenced orchestrations of the original game music — while the Game Boy Color version and music effects collection constitute the rest of the album.


Those who have played Dragon Quest I-VI and listened to their scores will probably notice that the soundtrack to the first Monsters game is not very different from previous installments. Koichi Sugiyama only composed eight new pieces of music for the game and the rest of the tracks are from the previous Dragon Quest Games. The beautiful field music of Dragon Quest I-VI is featured, as is, of course, the famous “Overture” that introduces the album. Though some may complain about their presence, I can’t say the reuse of the field themes is a bad thing, as they are great compositions and Sugiyama’s music always sounds good on any sound driver, even though the bleep-bleep noises of the Game Boy Color may not be favoured by certain video game lovers.

The music of the album is classical, melodious, tuneful, and memorable. The compositions are very good, as if intended to make atmosphere of fantasy land for children. After the introduction of Dragon Quest world with the “Overture,” the very sweet song “Terry’s World” plays, and the soundtrack quickly becomes a diverse experience with subsequent tracks. With the cheerful castle music “Win the Game,” the original dramatic field music “Never Ending Journey,” and the comical composition “It’s a Curious World!,” the album soon becomes endearing and shines for its musicality.

The battle music, “Battle of the Monsters,” is also good — melodious compared to the earliest instalments of Dragon Quest and coloured by dissonant voices — though the penultimate track on the album, “Fight Against Miraille,” is written in similar kin to Sugiyama’s more cacophonic creations. In my personal opinion, it’s proof that Sugiyama isn’t very competent at creating melodious battle music, though at least one such theme on the album is tolerable. “Beautiful Starlit Night” concludes the album and is an epic 6 minute composition that shines even against the likes of Dragon Quest III‘s “Into the Legend”.


In conclusion, those fans who have experienced a considerable amount of Dragon Quest music before should certainly listen to this interesting and endearing classically-oriented work. Those who haven’t encountered Dragon Quest before may wish to consider the Symphonic Suites to Dragon Quest III or Dragon Quest IV first, though this is quite an accessible work nonetheless. Be warned that the quality of synthesizer in this game is mediocre, comparable to the album Wizardry Suite I ~We Love Wizardry~, so don’t expect anything as lush as those featured in the Symphonic Suite albums or particularly resonant to come from the original Game Boy Color version. All that said, though the album doesn’t have a large amount of new content, it’s a great all-round experience that demonstrates Sugiyama still puts a lot of thought into the creation of scores for even lesser-known Dragon Quest games.

Dragon Quest Monsters Synthesizer Suite & Original Soundtrack Calvin Sidjaja

Do you agree with the review and score? Let us know in the comments below!


Posted on August 1, 2012 by Calvin Sidjaja. Last modified on August 1, 2012.

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