Music of Final Fantasy XIII-2

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Final Fantasy XIII-2 is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square Enix in 2011 as the sequel to Final Fantasy XIII . The music of the game was composed by Masashi Hamauzu, Naoshi Mizuta, and Mitsuto Suzuki. It was intended to sound different from the music of previous Final Fantasy titles, featuring more musical styles and vocal pieces. Since the release of the game, Square Enix has published the 2011 four-disc soundtrack album, Final Fantasy XIII-2 Original Soundtrack, as well as an album of arrangements and alternate versions of tracks from the game, Final Fantasy XIII Original Soundtrack PLUS, in 2012. The theme song for the game, "Yakusoku no Basho"(約束の場所,The Promised Place), was released by singer Mai Fukui as a single in 2011, and the English version of the song, sung by Charice Pempengco and included in the non-Japanese versions of the game, was included on her 2012 album Infinity .

<i>Final Fantasy XIII-2</i> video game

Final Fantasy XIII-2 is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Released in 2011 in Japan and 2012 in North America and PAL regions, it is a direct sequel to the 2009 role-playing game Final Fantasy XIII and is part of the Fabula Nova Crystallis subseries. A port to Microsoft Windows was released on Steam in December 2014 followed by iOS and Android in September 2015. XIII-2 includes modified features from the previous game, including fast-paced combat and a customizable "Paradigm" system to control which abilities are used by the characters, and adds a new system that allows monsters to be captured and used in battle. It features a heavy time travel element, allowing the player to jump between different times at the same location or different places at the same time. Lightning, the protagonist of the original game, has disappeared into an unknown world. Her younger sister Serah Farron, a returning character, and a young man named Noel Kreiss, journey through time in an attempt to find Lightning.

A role-playing video game is a video game genre where the player controls the actions of a character immersed in some well-defined world. Many role-playing video games have origins in tabletop role-playing games and use much of the same terminology, settings and game mechanics. Other major similarities with pen-and-paper games include developed story-telling and narrative elements, player character development, complexity, as well as replayability and immersion. The electronic medium removes the necessity for a gamemaster and increases combat resolution speed. RPGs have evolved from simple text-based console-window games into visually rich 3D experiences.

Masashi Hamauzu Japanese composer and pianist

Masashi Hamauzu is a Japanese composer, arranger, pianist, and lyricist. Hamauzu, who was employed at Square Enix from 1996 to 2010, was best known during that time for his work on the Final Fantasy and SaGa video game series. Born into a musical family in Germany, Hamauzu was raised in Japan. He became interested in music while in kindergarten, and took piano lessons from his parents.

Contents

Reviews of the soundtrack album were positive, with critics praising both the variety of styles and quality of the pieces. Several critics noted Mizuta's work as possibly his finest to date. Reviewers of the game were more mixed, with some feeling that some of the styles of music did not match where they were played in the game. Critics were also mixed in their opinions of the arranged album, feeling that several of the pieces were simply inferior versions of the original tracks. Both of the albums and the single sold well enough to place on the Japanese Oricon charts, with the original soundtrack album reaching a peak of #13 and remaining on the charts for eight weeks.

Oricon Inc., established in 1999, is the holding company at the head of a Japanese corporate group that supplies statistics and information on music and the music industry in Japan. It started as Original Confidence Inc., which was founded by Sōkō Koike in November 1967 and became known for its music charts. Oricon Inc. was originally set up as a subsidiary of Original Confidence and took over the latter’s Oricon record charts in April 2002.

Creation and influence

Composer Masashi Hamauzu in 2012 Concert Masashi Hamauzu - Imeruat - Toulouse Game Show - 2012-12-01- P1500790.jpg
Composer Masashi Hamauzu in 2012

The music of Final Fantasy XIII-2 was composed by Masashi Hamauzu, Naoshi Mizuta, and Mitsuto Suzuki. The three composers were coordinated by Keiji Kawamori to ensure the composers' three styles meshed well together. [1] Hamauzu, who was the sole composer for the music of Final Fantasy XIII, composed roughly a quarter of the game's tracks, as did Suzuki, while Mizuta wrote nearly half. [2] Prior to this game, Mizuta has worked on the music of Final Fantasy XI, while Suzuki had been a sound director for several Square Enix games and served as an arranger for XIII. [3] The game's director, Motomu Toriyama, wanted the game's soundtrack to have more variety than that of the music in Final Fantasy XIII , as well as feature more styles. As a result, the game had three composers rather than just Hamauzu. Toriyama also wished for the music to have "a more edgy sound" and more vocal pieces, so that it would sound "unlike the typical Final Fantasy title". [1] The music incorporates a wide variety of styles, from orchestral and electronic to rap, hip-hop, jazz funk, and metal. [1]

Naoshi Mizuta is a Japanese video game composer and musician. He is best known for his work on Final Fantasy XI, but has also composed music for Mega Man & Bass, Street Fighter Alpha, and Parasite Eve II. He started his career at Capcom before moving to Square in 1998.

The music of the video game Final Fantasy XIII was composed by Masashi Hamauzu. Former regular series composer Nobuo Uematsu did not contribute any pieces to the soundtrack. Music from the game has been released in several albums. The main soundtrack album, Final Fantasy XIII Original Soundtrack, was released on four Compact Discs in 2010 by Square Enix, the developers and producers of the game. Selections from the soundtrack have been released on two gramophone record albums, W/F: Music from Final Fantasy XIII and W/F: Music from Final Fantasy XIII Gentle Reveries, both in 2010 by Square Enix. An album of arranged pieces from the soundtrack, Final Fantasy XIII Original Soundtrack -PLUS-, was also released by Square Enix in 2010, as was an album of piano arrangements, Piano Collection Final Fantasy XIII. The theme song for the Japanese version of the game, "Kimi ga Iru Kara", was released as a single by For Life Music in 2009.

Square Enix Japanese video game developer, publisher, and distribution company

Square Enix Holdings Co., Ltd. is a Japanese video game developer, publisher, and distribution company known for its Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and Kingdom Hearts role-playing video game franchises, among numerous others. Several of them have sold over 10 million copies worldwide, with the Final Fantasy franchise alone selling over 115 million. The Square Enix headquarters are in the Shinjuku Eastside Square Building in Shinjuku, Tokyo. The company employs over 4300 employees worldwide.

Prior to the game Hamauzu was known for working on orchestral pieces, Mizuta for instrumental pieces, and Suzuki for electronic pieces, and as a result all three composers attempted to write music that did not fit their general style to avoid only writing music similar to what they had produced before. [4] They also worked with each other to blend their styles together, so that shifts between composers in the soundtrack would not be jarring. [5] While the music is not intended to be reminiscent of Final Fantasy XIII's music, pieces set in scenes involving places or characters from the prequel use motifs and pieces of music used in that game for those places or characters. [4] Mizuta's favorite song from the soundtrack that he wrote is "Caius's Theme", which he rewrote four times over the course of a month. Suzuki's favorite is "Historia Crux", which he wrote as several tunes mixing into one as a metaphor for time travel in the game, and Hamauzu's is "Knight of the Goddess", the battle theme for the game, which he attempted to make the equal of "Blinded by Light", the battle theme of the prequel, which he felt was very well received. [1] [4]

Soundtrack

Final Fantasy XIII-2 Original Soundtrack
Final Fantasy XIII-2 OST cover.jpg
Soundtrack album by
ReleasedDecember 14, 2011
Genre Video game soundtrack
LengthDisc 1: 1:10:35
Disc 2: 1:18:09
Disc 3: 1:14:46
Disc 4: 1:17:52
Total: 5:01:22
Label Square Enix

The first album of music from the game which Square Enix released is Final Fantasy XIII-2 Original Soundtrack. The album contains all of the musical tracks from the game, and was composed and produced by Masashi Hamauzu, Naoshi Mizuta, and Mitsuto Suzuki. Some of the tracks were arranged by Ryo Yamazaki, Yoshitaka Suzuki, Kengo Tokusashi, Shootie HG, and Sachiko Miyano, and a few songs were arrangements of previous Final Fantasy composer Nobuo Uematsu's chocobo theme. Multiple artists made lyrical contributions, including Shootie HG, Origa, and Aimee Blackschleger. The soundtrack spans four discs and 79 tracks, covering a duration of 5:01:22. It was released by Square Enix on December 14, 2011 in Japan and on February 2, 2012 in North America as a part of the limited edition of the game, bearing the catalog numbers SQEX-10296~9. The Japanese limited edition of the soundtrack included a bonus disc containing two versions of the 2011 Electronic Entertainment Expo trailer for the game. [3] The album reached #13 on the Japanese Oricon charts, and remained on the charts for eight weeks. [6]

Nobuo Uematsu Japanese video game composer

Nobuo Uematsu is a Japanese video game composer, best known for scoring most of the titles in the Final Fantasy series by Square Enix. He is considered to be one of the most well known composers in the video game industry. Sometimes referred to as the "Beethoven of video games music", he has appeared five times in the top 20 of the annual Classic FM Hall of Fame.

Chocobo

The Chocobo is a fictional species from the Final Fantasy video game series made by Square and Square Enix. The creature is generally a flightless bird, though certain highly specialized breeds in some titles retain the ability to fly. It bears a resemblance to casuariiformes and ratites, capable of being ridden and otherwise used by player characters during gameplay. Chocobos first appeared in Final Fantasy II and have been featured in almost all subsequent Final Fantasy games, as well as making cameo appearances in numerous other games. A spin-off Chocobo series featuring chocobos has also been created.

Origa Russian singer

Olga Vitalevna Yakovleva, better known as Origa, was a singer of Russian origin who rose to prominence for her musical collaborations in Japan.

The album received positive reviews from critics. Patrick Gann of the role-playing video game news website RPGFan called it "a no-questions-asked kind of purchase", praising in particular the variety of the pieces and the contrasts between the different styles. [3] Jayson Napolitano of the video game music news website Original Sound Version concurred, calling it "a fantastic soundtrack" with eclectic styles, and noting Mizuta's contributions as his best work to date. [2] Original Sound Version later named the album as the best soundtrack of 2011. [7] Don Kotowski of Square Enix Music Online, another video game music news website, was not as enthusiastic about the album as other reviewers, as he felt that some of the more experimental tracks missed the mark, but was still positive about the album as a whole. He considered the soundtrack "a fresh sound for the series", and agreed with Napolitano that Mizuta's contributions were noteworthy for the composer. [8] Reviewers of the soundtrack in the context of the game were more mixed. Simon Parkin in his review of the game for Eurogamer said that the music "suffers from a lack of coherent direction" and often did not match up with the scenes it was played in. [9] Dale North of Destructoid, however, felt that the soundtrack was "wonderfully varied and lots of fun", and predicted that "traditionalist" fans of Final Fantasy music would not like it as much. [10]

Eurogamer is a website focused on video game journalism, reviews, and other features. It is operated by Gamer Network Ltd. with headquarters in Brighton, East Sussex. It was formed in 1999 by brothers Rupert and Nick Loman while they were in secondary school.

<i>Destructoid</i> video game news website

Destructoid is a website that was founded as a video game-focused blog in March 2006 by Yanier Gonzalez. It is part of the Enthusiast Gaming network.

Track list

Soundtrack Plus

Final Fantasy XIII-2 Original Soundtrack PLUS
Soundtrack album by
ReleasedMay 30, 2012
Genre Video game soundtrack
Length1:07:02
Label Square Enix

On May 30, 2012 Square Enix published in Japan a second album of music from the game titled Final Fantasy XIII-2 Original Soundtrack PLUS. Similar to the Final Fantasy XIII Original Soundtrack PLUS album released for the previous game, the album contains early versions of songs used in Final Fantasy XIII-2, alternate takes contained in the downloadable content for the game, arrangements made for promotions of the game, and new remixes. The tracks on the album were arranged by Ryo Yamazaki, Kengo Tokusashi, Yoshitaka Suzuki, Goh Hotoda, Shootie HG, and Hiroyuki Togo. The single-disc soundtrack contains 16 tracks, covering a duration of 1:07:02, and bears the catalog number SQEX-10311. [11] The album's music covers a variety of styles, often different ones than those of the original pieces, including electronic, instrumental, and piano covers. [12] The album reached #93 on the Oricon charts, and remained on the charts for one week. [13]

Unlike the original soundtrack, the arranged album received mixed reviews from critics. Patrick Gann of RPGFan felt that the album was a good addition to the musical outputs of the Final Fantasy XIII world, and superior to the PLUS soundtrack for the first game in that it relied less on early, unpolished versions of songs. [11] Don Kotowski of Square Enix Music Online, however, felt that the album contained mainly "inferior" versions of works from the original soundtrack, and was not worth acquiring. [12] Both reviewers, however, praised "Clash on the Big Bridge - Oriental Mix -", an arrangement of a tune by Nobuo Uematsu from Final Fantasy V included in the game's downloadable content, as a welcome addition to the soundtrack, with Kotowski calling it "amazing" and the main reason to get the album, and Gann terming it "the most interesting version" of the song released to date. [11] [12]

Theme song

"Yakusoku no Basho"(約束の場所,The Promised Place) is the theme song of the Japanese version of Final Fantasy XIII-2. Sung by Mai Fukui, it was composed by Koichi Tabo. Non-Japanese versions of the game instead included an alternate English version of the song, "New World", from Charice Pempengco's album Infinity (2012). "New World" was also composed by Koichi Tabo. "Yakusoku no Basho" was released as a single on November 23, 2011 by J-more, and included three other tracks in addition to the piece. These tracks are "Tatta Hitori no Mikata"(たったひとりの味方,Only One Side) and instrumental version of both songs. Simon Isogai composed and wrote the lyrics for "Tatta Hitori no Mikata". The limited edition of the single included a DVD with a music video for the song. The song was also released on Fukui's six-track mini-album Beautiful Days on December 14, 2011, along with a Final Fantasy XIII-2 trailer and a code for downloadable content for the game. [14] The single has a length of 21:22, and has the catalog number of YICD-70093. The single reached #24 on the Oricon charts, and stayed on the charts for 8 weeks. [15]

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Kumi Tanioka Japanese composer

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References

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