SaGa 2 Hihou Densetsu -Goddess of Destiny- Original Soundtrack Liner Notes
Kenji Ito - Composer / Arranger
March 1st, 1990. That was the day my career as a game music composer began. I still didn't have any equipment, so, with only a small keyboard, I spent my first month researching game music. That was the era of the Famicom and the Game Boy, and there were only three channels for music. I never created music with only three sounds before, so I took Final Fantasy and the other games I was playing at the time as my models.
Two months after I had entered the company, as I was gradually gathering the equipment I needed, the master, Mr. Nobuo Uematsu, said to me "right now I'm working on both SaGa 2: Hihou Densetsu and Final Fantasy IV. Would you mind helping me out a bit?" Then he handed me all of the materials related to SaGa 2; all of the details about the world and the places where music was needed were written there. I was sure I would only end up writing two to three pieces, at most five, but then...
"Hey, I'm going to be writing the last battle theme, so you do the normal and boss battle themes, okay?"
"What? I don't have any confidence...besides, I mostly like ballads, so I'm bad at writing rock-oriented music like battle themes..."
"No problem, no problem; I'm bad at it too! (laughs) Just think of it as training and go for it."
Continuing like this, he handed me the crucial ending themes, and before I realized it, I was to compose half of the score. Thinking about it now, I wonder how I, the ultimate rookie out of all newcomers, could have gotten the chance to be entrusted with so much, and for the sequel to the first million-selling title on the Game Boy, no less. I will never forget what Uematsu-san said to me then: "Don't tell yourself 'it's only Game Boy synth, so this is all I can do!' Even within these limitations, if you give it 100%, it can be your own creation." Always keeping those words in mind, I gave SaGa 2: Hihou Densetsu my best. Between this and Final Fantasy Gaiden: Seiken Densetsu, which I composed afterwards, I believe that I expressed all that I could through Game Boy music.
I would never have expected that twenty years later there would be talk of a remake. (laughs) I was worried. I was incredibly worried. I had felt the same when Romancing SaGa: Minstrel Song was in production, but this was much worse than that time. Not the least of my worries was the fact that the original, both game and score, was well-received, and fans still love it to this day. Would I be able to live up to those fans' expectations and create a remake that they could be satisfied with?
But the producer, Mr. Hiroyuki Miura, said to me, "I'd like to create something great together with the father of the SaGa series' music." With these warm words of encouragement, I strengthened my resolve. Recalling my memories of the Square of around 20 years ago, I went about production with nostalgia, but earnestly. In SaGa 2: Goddess of Destiny, were we able to respond to the feelings of the SaGa fans who have continued to love the series for these 20 years? I will be glad if even one out of those many enjoys it.
Liner Notes Translated by Ben Schweitzer. Do not republish without written permission.