DigiCube

DigiCube Co., Ltd. (株式会社デジキューブ; Kabushiki-gaisha Dejikyūbu) was a Japanese company established as a subsidiary of software developer Square on February 6, 1996 and headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. The primary purpose of DigiCube was to market and distribute Square products, most notably video games and related merchandise, including toys, books, and music soundtracks. DigiCube served as a wholesaler to distributors, and was noteworthy for pioneering the sale of video games in Japanese convenience stores and vending machine kiosks.

DigiCube Co., Ltd.
Public (JASDAQ7589)
IndustryVideo games industry
Wholesale
Publishing
FateBankruptcy
FoundedFebruary 6, 1996
DefunctNovember 26, 2003
HeadquartersTokyo, Japan
OwnerSquare Enix

History

At its peak in 1998, DigiCube recorded sales of 8.6 million units, equaling ¥46.8 billion JPY. On February 2, 2000, Digicube announced it would start carrying the PlayStation 2 the following month, and expected sales of 100,000 consoles and 400,000 games.[1] In February 2001, after a thaw in relations between Nintendo and Square, Digicube began distributing Game Boy games for the first time.[2]

In the following years; however, sales declined precipitously. Although ownership of DigiCube was passed to the newly created Square Enix following the merger of Square with its former rival Enix in early 2003, it was already approximately 9.5 billion yen in debt. Following the announcement that the much-anticipated Final Fantasy XII would be delayed until sometime in 2004 (eventually released 2006), DigiCube filed for bankruptcy liquidation at the Tokyo District Court on November 26, 2003.[3] The bankruptcy would cost the newly merged Square Enix ¥760 million JPY.[4]

Releases

Music

Starting with Tobal No. 1 Original Sound Track in 1996, DigiCube published soundtracks of Square and Square Enix video games, as well as a few soundtracks of video games from other companies and a few non-video game-related albums. The last release was Piano Collections: Final Fantasy VII in 2003. The planned release of Front Mission 4 Plus 1st Original Soundtrack was cancelled following DigiCube's demise, although it and most of DigiCube's catalog was eventually re-printed by Square Enix. Digicube released 80 video game soundtrack albums during its existence, generally from games developed or published by Square/Square Enix, as well as 8 other albums.[5]

Perfect Works

Perfect Works is a series of video game-related books published by DigiCube. Only three books were published: the first was dedicated to Xenogears and printed in October 1998 in Japan. One book dedicated to SaGa Frontier 2 and another one dedicated to Front Mission 3 were released in 1999.

These books contain artwork, timelines and detailed descriptions of events of the related games. The Xenogears Perfect Works notably contains detailed information of the world where the game is set, giving indepth descriptions of the characters, creatures, geographical and historical settings, covering all the intended six episodes of Xenogears.

Ultimania

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The Final Fantasy XII Scenario Ultimania

Ultimania (アルティマニア Arutimania, a portmanteau of ultimate and mania)[6] is a series of video game books originally published in Japan by DigiCube and written by Studio BentStuff. Although they are primarily known as a resource for the Final Fantasy series, there have also been Ultimania guides published for several other Square Enix titles, including the SaGa series, Legend of Mana, Chrono Cross, Vagrant Story and the Kingdom Hearts series. In addition to providing information on how to complete their respective games, the guides primarily focus on commentary from the staff, original art designs and extended information about the game's storyline and characters. After DigiCube's bankruptcy, Square Enix has published the books directly.

References

  1. ^ IGN Staff (2 February 2000). "Digicube To Sell PS2's". IGN. Retrieved 12 April 2014.
  2. ^ IGN Staff (7 February 2001). "DigiCube plugs in for Game Boy". IGN. Retrieved 12 April 2014.
  3. ^ Venter, Jason (2003). "DigiCube Officially History". HonestGamers. Archived from the original on 13 February 2008. Retrieved 4 July 2005.
  4. ^ IGN Staff (4 February 2004). "Square Enix Holds Strong". IGN. Retrieved 12 April 2014.
  5. ^ "自社制作音楽CD" [Music CDs released by the company] (in Japanese). DigiCube. Archived from the original on August 14, 2003. Retrieved June 25, 2010.
  6. ^ Studio BentStuff, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania (in Japanese). DigiCube/Square Enix. p. 3. ISBN 4-925075-49-7.

External links

Creid

Creid (Irish pronunciation: [kɾʲɛdʲ], meaning "Believe") is the arranged soundtrack to Square's role-playing video game Xenogears. It was written by the game's composer Yasunori Mitsuda and performed by a musical ensemble dubbed Millennial Fair. It was released on April 22, 1998 in Japan by DigiCube, and re-released by Square Enix on June 29, 2005. Comprising ten tracks arranged from the Xenogears Original Soundtrack, the album is mostly done in Irish or Celtic music style, with minor influences of Japanese rock according to Mitsuda. Artists from Japan and Ireland were recruited for the project. Four of the five vocal tracks on the album were written by Junko Kudo and sung by Tetsuko Honma, while the title track "Creid" was written by Mitsuda and performed by Eimear Quinn.

The album was well received by critics, who praised both the originality of the concept as well as the execution and track selection. The work on the album inspired Mitsuda to bring Tomohiko Kira, the album's guitarist, back to have him perform in Chrono Cross; this would eventually result in the latter game's ending song "Radical Dreamers ~ Jewel which Cannot be Stolen ~".

Final Fantasy VIII

Final Fantasy VIII is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square for the PlayStation console. Released in 1999, it is the eighth main installment in the Final Fantasy series. Set on an unnamed fantasy world with science fiction elements, the game follows a group of young mercenaries, led by Squall Leonhart, as they are drawn into a conflict sparked by Ultimecia, a sorceress from the future who wishes to compress time. During the quest to defeat Ultimecia, Squall struggles with his role as leader and develops a romance with one of his comrades, Rinoa Heartilly.

Development began in 1997, during the English localization of Final Fantasy VII. The game builds on the visual changes brought to the series by Final Fantasy VII, including the use of 3D graphics and pre-rendered backgrounds, while also departing from many Final Fantasy traditions. It is the first Final Fantasy to use realistically proportioned characters consistently, feature a vocal piece as its theme music, and forgo the use of magic points for spellcasting.

Final Fantasy VIII was mostly well received by critics, who praised its originality and visuals while criticizing some of its gameplay elements. It was voted the 22nd-best game of all time in 2006 by readers of the Japanese magazine Famitsu. The game was a commercial success; it earned more than US$50 million in sales during its first 13 weeks of release, making it the fastest-selling Final Fantasy title until Final Fantasy XIII, a multi-platform release. A Microsoft Windows port followed in 2000, with the addition of the Chocobo World minigame. Final Fantasy VIII was re-released worldwide as a PSOne Classic on the PlayStation Store in 2009, for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable, with support for PlayStation Vita in 2012. It was re-released via Steam in 2013 and in Japan in 2014. As of December 2013, it has sold more than 8.5 million copies worldwide.

List of Chocobo media

The Chocobo series is a collection of video games published by Square, and later by Square Enix, featuring a recurring creature from the Final Fantasy series, the Chocobo, as the protagonist. The creature is a large and normally flightless bird which first appeared in Final Fantasy II and has been featured in almost all subsequent Final Fantasy games, as well as making cameo appearances in numerous other games. The Chocobo series of video games contains over 20 titles for video game consoles, mobile phones, and online platforms. These games include installments of the Mystery Dungeon series of roguelike video games, racing games, adventure games, and minigame collections. Although the various games of the series have different game styles and are generally unrelated except by their inclusion of a Chocobo as the main character, Square Enix considers them to be a distinct series.The first game in the series, Chocobo no Fushigina Dungeon, is a Mystery Dungeon game released in 1997, while the latest is Chocobo no Chocotto Nouen, a 2012 farming game for the GREE mobile platform. Another game in the series, Chocobo Racing 3D, was cancelled in 2013. A new game, Chocobo's Mystery Dungeon Every Buddy, is planned for release in early 2019. In addition to Square and Square Enix, the games have been developed by several other companies, including h.a.n.d., Bottle Cube, and Smile-Lab. Eight albums of music from Chocobo games have been produced and published by Square Enix, DigiCube, and Toshiba EMI, and an additional album of Chocobo-related music from both the Chocobo and Final Fantasy series, Compi de Chocobo, was released in 2013.

List of Final Fantasy media

Final Fantasy is a series of role-playing video games developed and published by Square Enix (formerly Square). Its first game premiered in Japan in 1987, and Final Fantasy games have subsequently been localized for markets in North America, Europe and Australia, on nearly every video game console since its debut on the Nintendo Entertainment System. Final Fantasy is Square Enix's most successful franchise, having sold over 97 million units worldwide to date. In addition to traditional role-playing games, the series includes tactical role-playing games, portable games, massively multiplayer online role-playing games, and games for mobile phones. Its popularity has placed it as the sixth-best-selling video game franchise, and the series has won multiple awards over the years.In addition to the 15 games released as part of the main (numbered) series and their many spin-offs and related titles, the Final Fantasy series has spawned many works in other media including anime, movies, novels and manga, and radio dramas. Final Fantasy: Unlimited, originally a stand-alone anime series, now has its own sub-franchise which includes video games. Many games, particularly the main series, have soundtrack album releases featuring their music in different arrangements. Square Enix has also consistently released companion books for its games which provide additional backstory and plot information, as well as detailed walkthroughs for the game. Since the announcement of Compilation of Final Fantasy VII, Square Enix has focused on "polymorphic content", expanding each game world with material on many video game platforms, as well as other forms of media.

List of Square Enix companion books

Dozens of Square Enix companion books have been produced since 1998, when video game developer Square began to produce books that focused on artwork, developer interviews, and background information on the fictional worlds and characters in its games rather than on gameplay details. The first series of these books was the Perfect Works series, written and published by Square subsidiary DigiCube. They produced three books between 1998 and 1999 before the line was stopped in favor of the Ultimania (アルティマニア, Arutimania) series, a portmanteau of ultimate and mania. This series of books is written by Studio BentStuff, which had previously written game guides for Square for Final Fantasy VII. They were published by DigiCube until the company was dissolved in 2003. Square merged with video game publisher Enix on April 1, 2003 to form Square Enix, which resumed publication of the companion books.

Both the Perfect Works and Ultimania books have focused primarily on Square and Square Enix's role-playing video game franchises, such as the Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts series; over 45 of the 75 books are for games related to the Final Fantasy series. Sometimes, multiple books have been written per game or revised editions have been published years afterwards. One of the books, Final Fantasy IX Ultimania Online, was solely published online as part of an experiment by Square Enix with online content delivery; another for Final Fantasy XI was planned, but the idea was abandoned as unsuccessful and all subsequent books have been published traditionally. The Ultimania series had sold over 10 million books by July 2007. All of the books have been released solely in Japanese, but in October 2017 Dark Horse Books announced that they would be publishing English translations of the three-volume 2012 Final Fantasy 25th Memorial Ultimania as Final Fantasy Ultimania Archive, for release starting in June 2018.

List of Xenosaga media

This is a list of media for the Xenosaga series owned by Namco Bandai.

Midas Interactive Entertainment

Midas Interactive Entertainment is a European publisher of computer, PDA, mobile phone and video games. Midas Interactive Entertainment is based on the outskirts of Braintree in Essex, England .

Most of the console games published by Midas are "budget" releases sold at a lower price than the majority of new titles, and are often localised Japanese titles - many of which were also released at a budget price in Japan.

Music of Final Fantasy IX

The music of the video game Final Fantasy IX was composed by regular series composer Nobuo Uematsu. It was his last exclusive Final Fantasy score. The Final Fantasy IX Original Soundtrack, a compilation of all music in the game, was originally released on four Compact Discs by DigiCube in 2000, and was re-released by Square Enix in 2004. A Best Of and arranged soundtrack album of musical tracks from the game entitled Final Fantasy IX: Uematsu's Best Selection was released in 2000 by Tokyopop Soundtrax. Final Fantasy IX Original Soundtrack PLUS, an album of music from the game's full motion videos and extra tracks, was released by DigiCube in 2000 and re-released in 2004, and a collection of piano arrangements of pieces from the original soundtrack arranged by Shirō Hamaguchi and performed by Louis Leerink was released as Piano Collections Final Fantasy IX in 2001.

The game's soundtrack is best known for "Melodies of Life," the theme song of the game, performed by Emiko Shiratori in Japanese and English. The song was released as a single by King Records in 2000. The soundtrack was based around a theme of medieval music, and was heavily inspired by previous Final Fantasy games, incorporating themes and motifs from earlier soundtracks. The music was overall well received; reviewers found the soundtrack to be both well done and enjoyable, though opinions were mixed as to the reliance on music of previous games. Several tracks, especially "Melodies of Life" and "Vamo' Alla Flamenco", remain popular today, and have been performed numerous times in orchestral concert series, as well as been published in arranged and compilation albums by Square as well as outside groups.

Music of Final Fantasy I and II

The music of the video games Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy II was composed by regular series composer Nobuo Uematsu, who would go on to be the exclusive composer for the next seven Final Fantasy games. Although they were composed separately, music from the two games has only been released together. All Sounds of Final Fantasy I•II, a compilation of almost all of the music in the games, was released by DataM/Polystar in 1989, and subsequently re-released by NTT Publishing in 1994. Symphonic Suite Final Fantasy, an arranged album of music from the two games by Katsuhisa Hattori and his son Takayuki Hattori was released by DataM in 1989, and re-released by NTT Publishing/Polystar in 1994. Final Fantasy & Final Fantasy II Original Soundtrack, another arranged album, this time by Nobuo Uematsu and Tsuyoshi Sekito, was released in 2002 by DigiCube and again in 2004 by Square Enix.

The music was well received by critics; reviewers have praised the quality and power of the original pieces, and reacted favorably to the arranged soundtracks. Several tracks, especially "Opening Theme", "Main Theme" and "Matoya's Cave", remain popular today, and have been performed numerous times in orchestral concert series, as well as having been published in arranged and compilation albums by Square Enix and outside groups.

Music of Final Fantasy VIII

The music of the video game Final Fantasy VIII was composed by regular series composer Nobuo Uematsu. The Final Fantasy VIII Original Soundtrack, a compilation of all music in the game, was released on four Compact Discs by DigiCube in Japan, and by Square EA in North America. A special orchestral arrangement of selected tracks from the game—arranged by Shirō Hamaguchi—was released under the title Fithos Lusec Wecos Vinosec Final Fantasy VIII, and a collection of piano arrangements—performed by Shinko Ogata—was released under the title Piano Collections Final Fantasy VIII.

The game's soundtrack is best known for two tracks: "Liberi Fatali", a Latin choral piece that is played during the introduction to the game, and "Eyes on Me", a pop song serving as the game's theme, performed by Chinese singer Faye Wong. Reviewers were generally pleased with the music, although several cited issues while comparing the score to previous games or looking at individual tracks.

Music of Final Fantasy X

The music of the video game Final Fantasy X was composed by regular series composer Nobuo Uematsu, along with Masashi Hamauzu and Junya Nakano. It was the first title in the main Final Fantasy series in which Uematsu was not the sole composer. The Final Fantasy X Original Soundtrack was released on four Compact Discs in 2001 by DigiCube, and was re-released in 2004 by Square Enix. Prior to the album's North American release, a reduced version entitled Final Fantasy X Original Soundtrack was released on a single disk by Tokyopop in 2002. An EP entitled feel/Go dream: Yuna & Tidus containing additional singles not present in the game was released by DigiCube in 2001. Piano Collections Final Fantasy X, a collection of piano arrangements of the original soundtracks by Masashi Hamauzu and performed by Aki Kuroda, was released by DigiCube in 2002 and re-released by Square EA in 2004. A collection of vocal arrangements of pieces from the game arranged by Katsumi Suyama along with radio drama tracks was released as Final Fantasy X Vocal Collection in 2002 by DigiCube.

The theme song for the game is titled "Suteki da ne", which was performed by Japanese folk singer Ritsuki Nakano, known as "RIKKI". The song was released as a single by DigiCube in 2001 and was re-released by Square Enix in 2004. The game's music was well received overall; reviewers praised the additions to the soundtrack by the two new composers for the series. They especially praised Hamauzu, both for his work in the original soundtrack and in arranging the themes for Piano Collections Final Fantasy X. Several tracks, especially "Suteki da ne" and "To Zanarkand", remain popular today, and have been performed numerous times in orchestral concert series, as well as been published in arranged and compilation albums by Square as well as outside groups.

Music of Final Fantasy XI

The music of the MMORPG Final Fantasy XI was composed by Naoshi Mizuta along with regular series composer Nobuo Uematsu and Kumi Tanioka. The Final Fantasy XI Original Soundtrack, a compilation of almost all of the music in the game, was released by DigiCube in 2002, and subsequently re-released by Square Enix in 2004. Final Fantasy XI Rise of the Zilart Original Soundtrack was released by DigiCube in 2003 after the release of the Rise of the Zilart expansion for Final Fantasy XI, and re-released by Square Enix in 2004. Final Fantasy XI Chains of Promathia Original Soundtrack was produced by Square Enix in 2004 after the release of the Chains of Promathia expansion, and in 2005 Square Enix published Music from the Other Side of Vana'diel, a collection of arranged tracks from the game performed by The Star Onions, a group composed of Square Enix composers including Naoshi Mizuta, Kumi Tanioka and Hidenori Iwasaki. Final Fantasy XI Treasures of Aht Urhgan Original Soundtrack was released by Square Enix in 2006 for the Treasures of Aht Urhgan expansion.

In 2007, Square Enix released the Final Fantasy XI Original Soundtrack Premium Box, a collection of all of the previously released albums, as well as the as yet unreleased Final Fantasy XI Unreleased Tracks and Piano Collections Final Fantasy XI, an album of unreleased music from the game and its expansions and an album of piano arrangements of music from the game, respectively. After the release of the fourth expansion for the game, Final Fantasy XI Wings of the Goddess Original Soundtrack was released in 2008 by Square Enix. Additionally, in summer 2008 another Piano Collections Final Fantasy XI album, completely separate from the previous piano collections album, will be released by Square Enix.

The music has received mixed reviews; while reviewers have praised some of the associated albums such as Final Fantasy XI Rise of the Zilart Original Soundtrack and Final Fantasy XI Treasures of Aht Urhgan Original Soundtrack, other albums, such as Final Fantasy XI Chains of Promathia Original Soundtrack and Music from the Other Side of Vana'diel, were not as universally liked. Several songs, especially "Distant Worlds", remain popular today, and have been performed numerous times in orchestral concert series, as well as been published in arranged and compilation albums by Square as well as outside groups.

Music of the Chocobo series

The Chocobo video game series is a spin-off series composed of over a dozen games developed by Square Co. and later by Square Enix featuring a super deformed version of the Chocobo, a Final Fantasy series mascot and fictional bird, as the protagonist. Several of the titles have received separate album releases of music from the game. The music of the Chocobo series includes soundtrack albums for the Chocobo's Mysterious Dungeon sub-series—comprising Chocobo's Mysterious Dungeon, Chocobo's Dungeon 2, and Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo's Dungeon—and soundtrack albums of music from Chocobo Racing, Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo Tales, and Chocobo and the Magic Picture Book: The Witch, The Maiden, and the Five Heroes, as well as an album of arranged music from Chocobo's Mysterious Dungeon and a single entitled Chocobo no Fushigina Dungeon Toki Wasure No Meikyuu: Door Crawl for the theme song of Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo's Dungeon.

The first album of the discography released was the soundtrack to Chocobo's Mysterious Dungeon, Chocobo no Fushigina Dungeon Original Soundtrack. It was released by DigiCube in 1997 and was reprinted by Square Enix in 2006. An arranged album of music from that game was released in under the title Chocobo no Fushigina Dungeon Coi Vanni Gialli by DigiCube in 1998, and soundtrack albums to Chocobo's Dungeon 2 and Chocobo Racing were released the following year, also by DigiCube. There were no further album releases in the series until 2006, when Square Enix produced a download-only soundtrack to Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo Tales. The latest releases in the series are the soundtrack to Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo's Dungeon and a combined soundtrack for Chocobo Tales and The Witch, The Maiden, and the Five Heroes, both of which were released by Square Enix in 2008.

Music of the Final Fantasy Tactics series

The music of the Final Fantasy Tactics series, composed of Final Fantasy Tactics, Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift, and Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions, was primarily composed by Hitoshi Sakimoto. He was assisted by Masaharu Iwata in composing the music for Final Fantasy Tactics. The Final Fantasy Tactics Original Soundtrack, a compilation of almost all of the music in the game, was released by DigiCube in 1997, and re-released by Square Enix in 2006. No separate soundtrack has been released for Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions. The soundtrack was well received by critics, who found it to be astounding and one of the best video game music soundtracks in existence at the time of its release.

The music of Final Fantasy Tactics Advance was again composed by Hitoshi Sakimoto, with assistance from Nobuo Uematsu, Kaori Ohkoshi, and Ayako Saso. The Final Fantasy Tactics Advance Original Soundtrack, a compilation of almost all of the music in the game, was released by DigiCube in 2003. A new age arrangement album entitled White: Melodies of Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, a selection of musical tracks from the game arranged by Yo Yamazaki, Akira Sasaki, and Satoshi Henmi, was released by SME Visual Works in 2003. Final Fantasy Tactics Advance Original Soundtrack was well received by critics, who praised the album's composition. Critics did not react as well to the White: Melodies of Final Fantasy Tactics Advance album, finding it to be a mediocre album with poor arrangements.

The music for Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift was also composed by Hitoshi Sakimoto, this time with the assistance of composers from his company Basiscape. The music was released as Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift Original Soundtrack by Square Enix in 2007. It was enjoyed by reviewers, who found it to be pleasant and rewarding.

Music of the Final Fantasy VII series

Final Fantasy VII is a role-playing video game developed by Square (now Square Enix) and published by Sony Computer Entertainment as the seventh installment in the Final Fantasy series. Released in 1997, the game sparked the release of a collection of media centered on the game entitled the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII. The music of the Final Fantasy VII series includes not only the soundtrack to the original game and its associated albums, but also the soundtracks and music albums released for the other titles in the collection. The first album produced was Final Fantasy VII Original Soundtrack, a compilation of all the music in the game. It was released as a soundtrack album on four CDs by DigiCube in 1997. A selection of tracks from the album was released in the single-disc Reunion Tracks by DigiCube the same year. Piano Collections Final Fantasy VII, an album featuring piano arrangements of pieces from the soundtrack, was released in 2003 by DigiCube, and Square Enix began reprinting all three albums in 2004. To date, these are the only released albums based on the original game's soundtrack, and were solely composed by regular series composer Nobuo Uematsu; his role for the majority of subsequent albums has been filled by Masashi Hamauzu and Takeharu Ishimoto.

The Compilation of Final Fantasy VII began eight years after the release of Final Fantasy VII with the release of the animated film sequel Advent Children in 2005. The soundtracks for each of the titles in the collection are included in an album, starting with the album release of the soundtrack to Advent Children that year. The following year, Nippon Crown released a soundtrack album to correspond with the video game Dirge of Cerberus, while Square Enix launched a download-only collection of music from the multiplayer mode of the game, which was only released in Japan. After the launch of the game Crisis Core in 2007, Warner Music Japan produced the title's soundtrack. The latest album in the collection, Before Crisis: Final Fantasy VII & Last Order: Final Fantasy VII Original Soundtrack, was released by Square Enix the same year as a combined soundtrack album for the game Before Crisis and the animated movie Last Order.

The original music received highly positive reviews from critics, who found many of the tunes to be memorable and noted the emotional intensity of several of the tracks. The reception for the other albums has been mixed, with reactions ranging from enthusiastic praise to disappointment. Several pieces from the soundtrack, particularly "One-Winged Angel" and "Aeris' Theme", remain popular and have been performed numerous times in orchestral concert series such as Dear Friends: Music from Final Fantasy and Tour de Japon: Music from Final Fantasy. Music from the Original Soundtrack has been included in arranged albums and compilations by Square as well as outside groups.

Music of the Front Mission series

Front Mission is a series of tactical role-playing games produced by Square Enix (originally Square). The music of the series includes the soundtracks to the main series, composed of Front Mission through Front Mission 5: Scars of the War, as well as the spin-off games, which include Front Mission Series: Gun Hazard, Front Mission Alternative, Front Mission: Online, Front Mission 2089 and its remake Front Mission 2089: Border of Madness, Front Mission 2089-II, and Front Mission Evolved. The soundtracks of the series' installments have been released in album form in Japan, with the exceptions of 2089, 2089-II, and Border of Madness, which reuse music from the other installments, and Evolved, which was published in 2010. The soundtrack to Front Mission was released in 1995 by NTT Publishing, which also published the soundtrack to Front Mission: Gun Hazard in 1996. DigiCube published soundtrack albums for Front Mission 2 and Alternative in 1997 and 3 in 1999. Square Enix published the albums for Front Mission 4 in 2004, and 5 and Online in 2006.

The soundtracks of the series have been warmly reviewed by critics, especially those of the main series and Gun Hazard. The music of Alternative and Online was less well received. The music of the series typically includes a fusion of electronic and orchestral music, though each game and composer in the series has taken the music in different directions. The composers for the series have included Yoko Shimomura, Noriko Matsueda, Koji Hayama, Hayato Matsuo, Hidenori Iwasaki, and Garry Schyman. A box set of music from across the series is currently planned, but has not yet been formally announced or given a release date.

Music of the Parasite Eve series

The music of the 1998 role-playing video game Parasite Eve, based on the novel of the same name by Hideaki Sena, was composed by Yoko Shimomura, and was one of her early popular successes. The music for its 2001 sequel Parasite Eve II was composed by Naoshi Mizuta and arranged by Hiroshi Nakajima. The 2010 spin-off title The 3rd Birthday was composed for by Shimomura, Mitsuto Suzuki and Tsuyoshi Sekito. Shimomura's work was described by herself as experimental, and incorporated multiple musical genres including opera music. The score for Parasite Eve was recorded at the Andora Studios in Los Angeles. For Parasite Eve II, Mizuta spent a year and a half on the project, using the game's scenario and visuals as references and taking inspiration from multiple film genres. It was Mizuta's first project after transferring from Capcom to Square Enix (then Square). For The 3rd Birthday, Shimomura worked with Suzuki and Sekito to create a score reminiscent of Parasite Eve, while Japanese rock band Superfly provided the theme song "Eyes on Me".

The original Parasite Eve Original Soundtrack album was released in May 1998 through DigiCube. Shimomura also produced an arrange album, Parasite Eve Remixes, which was released through DigiCube in July 1998. The soundtrack album for the second game, Parasite Eve II Original Soundtrack, was released through DigiCube in December 1999. It also released in North America through Tokyopop Soundtrax in September 2000. The third game's soundtrack album, The 3rd Birthday Original Soundtrack, released in December 2010 through Square Enix's music label. The first two game's original soundtracks were reissued through Square Enix in January 2010 due to popular demand, and a limited edition combined album titled Parasite Eve I & II Original Soundtrack Box was released alongside them. While some albums have received mixed responses from critics, the music of the Parasite Eve series has generally received positive reviews, with the score for the first game bringing Shimomura international acclaim.

Parasite Eve

Parasite Eve (パラサイト・イヴ, Parasaito Ivu) is a Japanese science fiction horror novel by Hideaki Sena, first published by Kadokawa in 1995. The book was published in North America by Vertical, Inc. in 2005.

Parasite Eve was adapted into a film and manga series. It was later expanded into three video games that serve as sequels to the novel, along with a spin-off third game. The video games have also been adapted into a manga series.

Spira (Final Fantasy)

Spira is the fictional world of the Square role-playing video games Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy X-2. Spira is the first Final Fantasy world to feature consistent, all-encompassing spiritual and mythological influences within the planet's civilizations and their inhabitants' daily lives. The world of Spira itself is very different from the mainly European-style worlds found in previous Final Fantasy games, being much more closely modeled on a setting influenced by the South Pacific, Thailand and Japan, most notably with respect to its vegetation, topography and architecture.

The creation of Spira includes distinct ethnic minorities including a portrayal of the fictional Al Bhed language that is prevalent throughout the game's dialogue. The backstory and concept behind the dark religious themes of Final Fantasy X were a central theme to the story and their ultimate resolution was well received. The popularity of the Eternal Calm video served as the impetus of Square Enix to do Final Fantasy X-2 to make their first direct sequel in video game form and depict the evolution of Spiran society after religious and political upheaval results in new factions and instability in the world. Spira and its inhabiting characters have been featured in several other Square Enix works including Dissidia Final Fantasy, Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, three games within the Kingdom Hearts series and Theatrhythm Final Fantasy.

There have been numerous academic essays on the game's presentation, narrative and localization aspects. Washburn writes that mastering the game comes with the mastering of the cultural knowledge of Spira to unlock skills and abilities. O'Hagan writes on the localization of the games that impact the game experience, detailing alterations to the script and dialogue with modifications, additions and omissions. Another aspect was that the presentation of Spira without an overworld view can be considered a pioneer in 3D role-playing game maps.

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