Final Fantasy XII Composer Hitoshi Sakimoto Shares Creative Process For Ivalice

On PlayStation Blog, Sony Interactive Entertainment Communications Manager Justin Massongill interviewed Final Fantasy XII composer Hitoshi Sakimoto about how he underwent the creative process of crafting music for the title.

Regarding the actual composition itself, Sakimoto provided the following statements:

“Speaking more specifically about the music, I centred on chord progression and orchestration that felt bright and colorful right at the heart of the compositions and tried to make sure that the layers of the songs wouldn’t stray too far from this focal point. The theme song for Final Fantasy XII that is used during the opening movie where Rasler dies in the war between Archadia and Dalmasca demonstrates these characteristics best.

Additionally, I tried to avoid negative emotions overall. For parts where those negative emotions had to be included, I made sure to intentionally build in some “pathways to positivity” within the music.”

When taking Ivalice as a whole into account, Sakimoto replied with an answer that would intrigue Final Fantasy Tactics fans:

“Ivalice’s “sound” was born in Final Fantasy Tactics, so I think the most important characteristics are contained within the melody of the main theme. These characteristics are the same as those for Final Fantasy XII, as mentioned in my previous answer.

For the composition, I decided to use pure orchestral sound. I suppose that’s because I think that’s what “fantasy” should sound like.

Before Final Fantasy Tactics, I worked on a game called Tactics Ogre. This game depicts an altogether crueller and harsher world, which I reflected in the music.

You could perhaps call Final Fantasy Tactics a Square Enix take on Tactics Ogre, but it does carry the Final Fantasy name. I made sure to align with a more orthodox trajectory, so as not to besmirch that Final Fantasy name, haha. I think that’s why the music ended up being more popular.”

Interestingly, Sakimoto stated he loves the soundtrack of the film It, and he enjoys the soundtrack of Battlefield 2042. From a surface level, this seems rather unexpected, but the world of music doesn’t discriminate.

You can read this interview with Hitoshi Sakimoto in full via PlayStation Blog.

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Orpheus Joshua

Random gamer equally confused by the mainstream and the unusual. Fan of JRPGs, Action, Platformers, Rhythm, and Adventure titles.