Another very talented videogame composer is Hiroshi Tamawari. Now, Tamawari wasn't a videogame composer for very long - about four, five years - but during that time he was very prolific. He is still active today, though not as a videogame composer - instead, he became a freelancer, staging and translating musicals and even composing and writing lyrics for musicals. On Oct. 30th he's going to be releasing an Orchestral Works album of original music he's done, so that's exciting.
So another one of my favorite videogame composers is Yasunori Shiono, formerly of Neverland, and before that Wolf Team. It's him that started my attempts to track down the complete works of various composers. So, with that, I present a complete list of known or suspected Shiono videogame scores.
The following credits are known to be true.
Miracle Ropit's Adventure in 2100 - Micronics - Aug. 7 1987 - Michio Fujisawa & Yasunori Shiono
This game saw a vinyl release of arranged tracks from this game, performed (according to VGMdb) by the Tokyo Amati Orchestra.
Gaudi: Barcelona no Kaze - Wolf Team - 1989 - Yasunori Shiono
This is both the first solo score by Yasunori Shiono and his only solo score during his time at Wolf Team.
Arcus II: Silent Symphony - Wolf Team - 1989 & 1990 - Masaaki Uno, Motoi Sakuraba, and Yasunori Shiono
Arcusyu - Wolf Team - 1989 & 1990 - Masaaki Uno, Motoi Sakuraba, and Yasunori Shiono
The same game as Oh Kush, it turns out! Thanks to commenter Humza on this.
Akushu: Kagarou no Jidai wo Koe - Wolf Team - 1989 & 1990 - Masaaki Uno, Motoi Sakuraba, and Yasunori Shiono
Mid-Garts - Wolf Team - 1989 - Masaaki Uno, Motoi Sakuraba, and Yasunori Shiono
Confirmed via Shiono's TAB profile. Thanks to commenter Humza again.
D: European Mirage - Wolf Team - 1990 - Masaaki Uno, Motoi Sakuraba, and Yasunori Shiono
FZ Senki Axis - Wolf Team - 1990 - Yasunori Shiono (Mega Drive and x68000), Motoi Sakuraba (Mega Drive and x68000), and Masaaki Uno (x68000)
Another one confirmed thanks to Huzma!
Ryu: Koku Ki no Ryuu Yori - Wolf Team - 1990 & 1991 - Masaaki Uno, Motoi Sakuraba, and Yasunori Shiono
Granada - Wolf Team - Nov. 16, 1991 - Motoi Sakuraba (Mega Drive and x68000) and Yasunori Shiono (x68000)
Yasunori Shiono left Wolf Team in 1991 to work at Neverland.
Lufia & the Fortress of Doom - Neverland - Jun. 25 1993 - Yasunori Shiono
Many sources credit also an Aki Zaitsu and Naomi Kuroda for the music, but no album release of the music has ever credited a composer other than Shiono, so they have not been listed. It has been suggested that Aki Zaitsu is a pseudonym for Akihiko Suzuki, who made the sound driver, but this is unconfirmed.
Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals - Neverland - Feb. 24, 1995 - Yasunori Shiono
Also listed in the game's credits is Yukio Nakajima, Sound Assist.
Chaos Seed - Neverland - Mar. 15 1996 - Yasunori Shiono, Katsuhiro Hayashi, and Yukio Nakajima
Katsuhiro Hayashi was a veteran Sega composer who left Sega and composed for a couple games, possibly freelance, but this is unconfirmed. Chaos Seed is one of the games he composed for.
Energy Breaker - Neverland - 1996 - Yukio Nakajima, Yuusei Yamamoto, and Yasunori Shiono
This track is mainly the work of Nakajima. Yamamoto composed two tracks, as did Shiono, who only composed two original tracks for the game and is credited also for a reuse of "Priphea Flowers" from the Lufia series.
Lufia: The Legend Returns - Neverland - Sep. 7 2001 - Yasunori Shiono, Akiko Ishibashi, Tomoko Morita, and Yukio Nakajima
Yukio Nakajima did arrangement of a couple tracks. Whether he composed any is unknown.
Disney's Magical Park - Neverland - 2002 - Yukio Nakajima, Tomoko Morita, Akiko Ishibashi, and Yasunori Shiono
Confirmed through Shiono's TAB profile. His exact role is unclear - Mobygames lists only Nakajima (as Sound Director) and Morita and Ishibashi (as composers). This game likely isn't much of substance anyway.
CIMA: The Enemy - Neverland - 2005 - Tomoko Morita, Yasunori Shiono, and Yukio Nakajima
a.k.a. Frontier Stories.
Lufia: Curse of the Sinistrals - Neverland - Feb. 25 - 2010 - Yasunori Shiono, Tomoko Morita, and Yukio Nakajima
This is not, I'm afraid, a new Lufia game. It is a remake of Lufia II, with music from it and the first game arranged by Morita and Nakajima. Shiono had no involvement or participation in this remake and is credited for his being the original composer of the tracks, while Morita and Nakajima are credited for arrangement.
Red Spider: Vengeance - Studio Wasp - Jul. 18 2014 - Yasunori Shiono
Four tracks were composed by Shiono for this game, the remainder of the in-game music is library music.
Red Spider2: Exiled - Studio Wasp - Jan. 17 2015 - Yasunori Shiono and Yukio Nakajima
Shiono composed three tracks for this game and Nakajima composed two. The remainder of the in-game music is library music or the four original tracks Shiono composed for the first Red Spider being reused.
Red Spider 3 - Studio Wasp - Unknown, Presumably 2016 - Yasunori Shiono and Yukio Nakajima
This game has not yet been released, but through Twitter it is known that Shiono has composed a new track for it titled "A Heroine Never Dies" and Nakajima a new track titled "Mission Furtive".
Mugen Senshi Valis II - Telenet Japan - Nov. 17 1989 - Masahiro Kajihara, Shinobu Ogawa, Tenpei Sato, and/or Yasunori Shiono
A couple sources credit Shiono as a composer for this. If he did compose for it, it was likely as a guest from Wolf Team.
There you are. The videogame music works of Yasunori Shiono. Personally, I'm overjoyed that he's once again composing for videogames and I hope that he lands jobs for bigger games. I would love to see him scoring a JRPG again, and a music sampler posted on his YouTube channel from two years ago shows that he's still got it.
Sources for this knowledge include VGMrips, for the Mugen Senshi Valis II credit, SNESMusic's MS Wiki for other credits, VGMdb for the info on Miracle Ropit, and an obscure Japanese website which I doubt I will ever see or find again for the Oh Kush suspected credit.
UPDATE OCT. 24 2016: Further sources include, thanks to commenter Huzma for this info, Shiono's TAB profile page, as well as Mobygames for Disney's Magical Park credits.
Here's hoping that Shiono-san goes on to bigger and better things!
One hobby of mine is trying to track down all the videogames a particular composer worked on. Sometimes, I imagine, it would be easy, if I were to choose a composer who was well-known and didn't work in the era of pseudonyms. Alas, that has not happened yet. As a result of this hobby I have tried to track down all the videogame music work of Ryuji Sasai, one of my favorite videogame composers.
It is not easy, what with the lack of information on the English-speaking Internet about his work. Nevertheless, I have given it a fair amount of work. Most of the research to find this information happened six months ago and I did not write down my sources. I presume that if you dig far enough into the Internet, you, possibly with the aid of Google Translate, could also find out this information.
So something I have now is a Tumblr thing now. Something I've been doing on it is posting my thoughts on various videogame music tracks. I've decided to repost them here for the interest of my likely non-existent readership.
Infrequency is my hallmark when it comes to blogging.
WARNING: There are spoilers contained within this review. If you don't like spoilers, then don't read.
So, I saw The Secret Life of Pets on Wednesday. It was sort of meh. It felt like boardroom designed adorable, made to appeal to the widest audience possible. Illumination Entertainment is trying to be Pixar with the talent to actually match it. And it only makes the mildest glance to what pets do while we're away before moving into a generic adventure plot.
The script could've used a few drafts. It's not until the adventure plot begins that the script decides that Duke (the giant brown four-legged Sasquatch-dog) is good, after all. Before that it can't decide between "new dog, not all that bad" or "yeah he's actually a bit of a jerk". The whole Max-and-Duke thing feels like a rehash of Woody-and-Buzz without the charm or distinctiveness of either.
The villain is a rabbit who leads an entire horde of animals who have mildly sympathetic stories. The rabbit is fantastically well-acted and probably has the most character of anyone in the film, but the writing lets it down. Snowball comes off, with its interest in the gory details of human killing and maniacal chase of Max and Duke, as far too much of a sociopath for its adoption at the end by a little girl to redeem it.
Finally, there's the actual hero of the movie, Gidget, a fluffy white dog who starts at like a generic princess pining for Max but, as the film goes on, turns into an action heroine. She amasses a motley cast of characters: a cat who - in grand tradition - pretends to be the most elegant creature alive but undergoes a number of embarrassing moments, a bird, and multiple dogs, the most distinctive (besides Gidget) being the utterly hilarious Pops.
It's one of the few areas of interest in the film: for all that it's Max and Duke's story, Gidget and her motley crew that are the real heroes of the movie. By the end, though, the movie has completely abandoned all pretense of being about the secret life of pets.
So... 5.5 stars for being perfectly competently executed without going to the trouble of having any real distinguishing features.
Incredibly, a new blog post emerged! And not only that, but this makes the second of June! Yes, folks, things really are picking up...
I've been enjoying some really fantastic soundtracks recently. Do you want to know what they are, and my thoughts on them? You can find that knowledge after the jump.
Our Twitter account: https://twitter.com/HistoriesAudio
Our Facebook account: https://www.facebook.com/TheHistoriesAudioComedy
Our YouTube account: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3NJ-ci2D4O4RSkPaZ0kFaA
Yes, ladies and gents, at long last my audio sketch comedy is coming. The first episode will be coming June 11th, 2016, which is exciting.
I am joined with the talented voice actors Justin S, Clark Jenka, Sarah Jacobs, and Bennie Carey. It is going to be uploaded to the Youtube thing that's made such a big splash since its creation.
It is all very exciting.
Well, it's been nearly three months since I unveiled The Froggite Histories. Since then I've renamed it to simply The Histories, recasted one actress - and than the new actress couldn't make the deadline, I've recasted an actor - still waiting on lines - and all in all it's looking to take longer than I expect. Disappointing, but perhaps inevitable.
Tempus continues well. I am happy to say that I am the composer! It gives me great pride to be doing the music to a project of such scope. Yes, it may be an RPG Maker game, but there's an excellent team behind it, of which I am happy to be a part of.
With luck I will be blogging again quite soon, and with more regularity than last year.
Hello to whomever reads this blog, if there is indeed anyone whom does so. Today I am proud to unveil to you my original audio sketch comedy series, entitled The Froggite Histories. It's been in the works since July and the first episode is nearing completion, hopefully to come soon. This first episode is written entirely by myself and acted by a small group of fantastically talented actors (and me).
Please keep an eye out - I'll be uploading it to Soundcloud (and possibly YouTube) for you to enjoy, so keep an eye and an ear out for it.