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loveydovey Sep 22, 2007

I'm listening to the Final Fantasy Tactics Advance soundtrack for the first time.  Besides thoroughly enjoying it thus far, I'm noticing the sound quality (samples/synths/or-whatever-was-used) on Disc 2 (Full sound version) appear quite identical to those used in the FF12 soundtrack.  Does anyone know if Sakimoto used the same gear to create the scores for both games?

Ramza Sep 22, 2007

I have no facts, but I have made the exact same connection that you did. I think it's fair to basically assume this AS fact based on the similarity in sound quality.

Cedille Sep 23, 2007

loveydovey wrote:

I'm listening to the Final Fantasy Tactics Advance soundtrack for the first time.  Besides thoroughly enjoying it thus far, I'm noticing the sound quality (samples/synths/or-whatever-was-used) on Disc 2 (Full sound version) appear quite identical to those used in the FF12 soundtrack.

It's glad to read such a positive comment. By way of preface however, I want to know where you come from, with regard to FFTA having the same samples as FFXII. People uniformly say every Sakimoto work sounds the same and they say "it sounds exactly like FFXII!!" whenever hearing his other works even though Sakimoto tries to do something different in his own way, or does use the different samples. As I know it’s a common and inevitable assessment of Sakimoto, I think it’s rather a waste of time to explain to someone how I think one of his works is different from another. Should you listen to Stella Deus or whatever released in 2007, all of which resemble FFXII more than FFTA in my opinion, you’d feel the same thing.

What Sakimoto used in FFXII are, Sonic Implants Symphonic Strings Collection, East West Quantum Leap Symphonic Orchestra Woodwinds & Brass, Miroslav Vitous Symphonic Orchestra Samples, SAM Trombones & French Horns. Sakimoto began to score FFTA just half a year before the release, around September 2002 when of those sample libraries, only Sonic Implants Symphonic Strings Collection and Miroslav Vitous Symphonic Orchestra Samples did seem to be already released (note: I’m writing this on the basis of my quick search). As such, if you think FFTA has the same brass and strings (which of course include harp or pizzicato) samples as FFXII, you might be right, although I don’t agree. For me, one similarity between FFXII and FFTA if any is his obbligato-ish clarinet or oboe usage, but the samples themselves don’t sound the same to me. You know just because there are some similarities (composition-wise) in both albums doesn't mean the same samples are used.

I’d like to ramble more, but I'd not since I don't possess the necessary knowledge on MIDI and as I said I see little sense of arguing on this matter. Every ear is different and I won't prevent anybody from feeling such. That's the way this composer goes.

loveydovey Sep 23, 2007

Thanks for your insight Cedille.  Especially the info about the sample/synths he used--could you link me to where you found that info?

Having listened to all of FFTA now, I can say the samples don't sound identical but immensely similar.  Certainly having a common compositional style and character contributes to the perception of their likeness.

Cedille Sep 23, 2007

loveydovey wrote:

Certainly having a common compositional style and character contributes to the perception of their likeness.

Yeah, that's what I struggled to say but failed. DTM magazine ('DTM' is a Japanese term and refers to MIDI or computer music in general) is a good source when it features VGM. Sakimoto and Kawamori (the synthesizer assistant of FFXII, who had made FFXII music sequenced on the PS2 sampler) talked about the equipment they used.

Dais Sep 23, 2007

Tangent question: Has Sakimoto ever commented on the fact that the majority of the work he is best known for is of a strongly orchestral+ambient nature? I realize that doesn't cover all the work he's done, but most of his really acclaimed stuff is the stuff that leads certain people (including possibly me) to say "all of his work sounds the same"....

oh hey, he composed the Deltora Quest DS music. Maybe the game won't be 100% terrible after all...

JBL Sep 23, 2007 (edited Sep 23, 2007)

^
This is his signature style, it's what he is known for... developers contract him because they feel that this sound would be fitting to their game.
Imo, people should just accept that Sakimoto most of the time sounds exactly like Sakimoto... I think it's similar to Iron Maiden's 8+ minute epics penned solely by Steve Harris... (Fear Of The Dark, The Clansman, etc. at least one per album all the way up to their latest)
Some fans complain that they all sound the same, follow similar structures, etc... but that is part of what makes Iron Maiden! big_smile

Anyway, I just found this video of Opoona that I never saw before, and most people probably haven't seen:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rZ_2f4fwG_k

What he's doing in this game sounds completely unlike anything he's done before.
You can still tell it's him though from the awesome unusual structures.
It also seems a bit on his melodious side.

Amazingu Sep 23, 2007

I think there's a BIG difference between having your own signature style, and using the same goddamn synth over and over again.

Wanderer Sep 23, 2007

As much of a Sakimoto junkie as I am, I do wish he'd experiment more with an orchestra... or at the very least, incorporate some live instruments into his work (ala Hamauzu).

What he's doing in this game sounds completely unlike anything he's done before.

Bits and pieces of it remind me of him, mostly chord progressions and the way he phrases his melodies. It's definitely more stylistically diverse than he usually is.

Liontamer Sep 24, 2007

loveydovey wrote:

Thanks for the link.  What's DTM stand for btw? Digital...t.....Music!

Desk Top Music - has it on the site.

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