The Legend of Heroes -Zero no Kiseki- Original Soundtrack

The Legend of Heroes -Zero no Kiseki- Original Soundtrack Album Title:
The Legend of Heroes -Zero no Kiseki- Original Soundtrack
Record Label:
Nihon Falcom
Catalog No.:
Release Date:
December 16, 2010
Buy Used Copy


The Legend of Heroes -Zero no Kiseki- Original Soundtrack is the soundtrack for the newest entry in Falcom’s long-running series of RPGs. Continuing the tradition of the Trails in the Sky, the soundtrack blends typical organic setting themes with some rocking battle themes and a headlining vocal theme. Many have felt that the Falcom Sound Team J.D.K. have exhausted their sound in recent years and the introduction of two new members on Ys SEVEN did little to improve matter. Their latest soundtrack features yet more functional, but rarely exceptional, music from the team.


“Zero no Kiseki,” the game’s main theme, appears in its full version on the penultimate track on the album. In contrast to the main theme for The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky, it’s not terribly interesting, and could really be interchanged with most of the other softer melodies that appear on the album without incident (except for the fact that it appears so frequently interwoven into other pieces). “way of life” is the vocal version of the game’s main theme, and it is featured in an opening and full version on the soundtrack. It’s a powerful, rocking piece, featuring Kanako Kotera’s spirited vocals. The base melody is nothing special, though the arrangement does a good job of demonstrating its strong points.

The soundtrack emphasises its inferiority compared to those of the Trails in the Sky trilogy right from the introductory tracks. There are a few electronic tracks clustered around the first half of the soundtrack’s first disc. These don’t do a particularly great job of introducing the album, blending into each other and generally sounding uninteresting, more atmospheric than melodic. The flute in “Geo-Front” is a nice touch, and the jazz in “TRINITY” is rhythmically satisfying, but, with the exception of “Get Over the Barrier!,” a rousing though not atypical battle theme with a rather derivative melody, the soundtrack doesn’t hit its stride until the twelve track. That is “On the Green Road,” a typical field theme whose infusion with rock elements helps it stand out somewhat.

The majority of the tracks are peaceful and melodic in nature, though rarely exceptional. Among those that stand out, “Arc-en-ciel” is a fun, melodically profound jazz piece, as is, to a lesser degree, “Balloons and Confetti.” The melody in “Water, Plants and the Blue Sky” is quite peaceful and develops well, making the track feel longer than it really is — a welcome facet that is also shared by “Wind from Liberl”, which starts with an infectious pizzicato section. Another favourite of mine is “Yearning Sun”, with its soft pleasing melody and spot-on arrangement. There’s a good deal of obvious-sounding synth spread throughout these tracks, and no instrument sounds terribly realistic, but they don’t need to; the synth carries a formidable, satisfying air of its own.

There are a few battle tracks scattered through the release that sound just like they came out of an Ys title. With its raging guitars, “Intense Chase” is quite enjoyable to listen to, while “Formidable Enemy” is an extremely pleasing boss theme with a more urgent sound. These tracks will be nothing new to most series’ followers, and a potential turn-off for those tired with the new Falcom sound, though they’re still effective and enjoyable otherwise. Among more creative themes, “Inevitable Struggle” exudes a classic sound with its heavy synth and heroic melody. “Get Over the Barrier – Roaring Version” is without a doubt the superior version of the piece, thanks to the violins present in this variation which lends the track an awfully noble atmosphere. “Stand Up Battle Formation” has a piano banging away in the bass, lending it a jazzy air of its own, though this very technique is outdone by the more dissonant “Demonic Drive”.

As the soundtrack approaches its climax, there are a few welcome deviations from the generic sound. There include the ghostly “A Bell That Cannot Ring”, grungy “Killking Bear”, and, with its oboe lead, the very welcome “The Starry Mist in the Night”. “Arrival Existence,” the final battle theme, is easily the most fulfilling battle theme on the album: lengthy and epic, pounding, and moving. The range of instruments used, from a harpsichord to grungy sound effects, keeps the piece fresh and evolving throughout its length. The game’s main theme makes an appearance as well to bring the soundtrack round full circle. “New Days ~ Omen” is a fine credits theme that doesn’t wear itself thin despite being the longest track on the album, constantly finding new ground to traverse.


After a disappointing beginning, this album establishes itself as a typical Falcom RPG soundtrack, and it doesn’t try to take any risks with this branding. The pieces all sound nice but derivative, and, by the end, most listeners will find plenty to like but little to excite them. All in all, if the reader absolutely must have new, typical sounding RPG tunes to listen to, this would be a good purchase with its three discs of themes. However, keep in mind that it is inferior to much of Falcom’s other output on the series and those looking for more interesting and creative soundtracks should look at some other releases from the last month.

The Legend of Heroes -Zero no Kiseki- Original Soundtrack Marc Friedman

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Posted on August 1, 2012 by Marc Friedman. Last modified on August 1, 2012.

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