SaGa – All Sounds of

All Sounds of SaGa Album Title: All Sounds of SaGa
Record Label: NTT Publishing
Catalog No.: N32D-007/8 (1st Edition); NTCP-1004/5 (Reprint)
Release Date: December 21, 1991; December 12, 2004
Purchase: Buy at CDJapan


Nobuo Uematsu – SaGa, SaGa 2 Composer

Now that the SaGa series has reached number 3, a complete music compilation is being released. I was the sole composer of the first game, while on the second game, I collaborated with Kenji Ito, who had just entered Square. And the third game was created by the legendary progressive rock bassist, Ryuji Sasai-san, and the head of Square Osaka’s development team, Chihiro Fujioka-san. As you listen through this compilation, I am sure you will notice that each of the three works has its own distinct coloration, no?

SaGa was Square’s first game for the Game Boy. From a musical standpoint, it has different capabilities from the Famicom I had written for in the past, so I remember spending a good deal of time wondering about how to utilize new elements such as its waveforms and its stereo sound. The director of the project was a member of the Final Fantasy games’ production team, Akitoshi Kawauzu-san, the planning was handled by the father of FFIV’s active time battle system, Hiroyuki Ito-san, and the man who would later become director of Seiken Densetsu, Koichi Ishii. The current planner on FFIV and so forth, Takashi Tokita, did graphics. Looking back, the development staff was full of interesting faces. Look at how you youngsters have grown! You make this old man proud.

These CDs include all 54 tracks from the SaGa series, 1 through 3, with nothing left out, least of all the ending themes. On top of that, I’ve arranged a synthesizer piece as a bonus. Please, enjoy, and let memories of the games’ numerous scenes come to you as you listen.

Kenji Ito – SaGa 2 Composer

Even though the SaGa 2 part of this album was a collaboration with Uematsu-san, it stands as a monument to my first compositional undertaking. The pressure was immense; I spent time researching things like what game music is, and somehow I managed to turn in a completed work.

It seems like “Peaceful Land” is popular with the girls and “Never Give Up” with the boys. I sometimes play “Peaceful…” on the piano myself. The most difficult thing to compose was, of course, the Ending Theme. I filled it with phrases from throughout SaGa 2‘s music.

I hope that with each project from now on, I can compose more music that you all like; thanks for your support!

Ryuji Sasai, Chihiro Fujioka – SaGa 3 Composers

Just as the game itself tried out new things, we wanted to do the same with SaGa 3‘s music, and so we tried our hand at using four channels. As a result, we were able to emphasize the beat and rhythm more than in previous games in the series.

There were limitations on memory and processing speed, but it is the tragic saga of creators to burn out when there are so many limitations. There is both pain and pleasure in trying to figure out how to turn our concepts into data, to make people feel harmony and rhythm. And because the Game Boy has the capability for stereo sound, but only one speaker, we had to create it so that it could be heard through headphones as well as the built-in speaker. Which tracks do all of you like? Please let us hear your thoughts.

Translated by Ben Schweitzer. Edited by Ben Schweitzer and Chris Greening. Please do not republish without written permission.

Posted on September 9, 2012 by Chris Greening. Last modified on March 9, 2014.

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About the Author

I've contributed to websites related to game audio since 2002. In this time, I've reviewed over a thousand albums and interviewed hundreds of musicians across the world. As the founder and webmaster of VGMO -Video Game Music Online-, I hope to create a cutting-edge, journalistic resource for all those soundtrack enthusiasts out there. In the process, I would love to further cultivate my passion for music, writing, and generally building things. Please enjoy the site and don't hesitate to say hello!

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