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  #31  
Old Dec 24, 2013, 01:21 AM
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I think the point about it being on a single disc is probably the only advantage, but then I don't have a Blu-ray drive in my PC, so it's a huge hassle. However, I think the large number of discs allows for more creative/elaborate packaging and bonus content to be thrown it. It'd be a shame to see that go away because they can cram it all into a single-sized jewel case.
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  #32  
Old Dec 24, 2013, 06:50 AM
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I think Blu Ray has already failed as an audio medium, even though it sounds good in theory (har har). Physical releases are becoming fewer in number, so you're already talking about a niche product within a niche product. But I have nothing in my house that can read Blu Ray discs, whereas I probably have a dozen products that can read CD's.

For their marketing purposes, I think they'd be better off pushing the soft copies of the release.
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  #33  
Old Dec 24, 2013, 07:45 AM
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The point of Bluray never should be audio only. Some companies [like SE] just love to brag about it and fool your average customers most of the time.

Last edited by Efendija; Dec 24, 2013 at 10:16 AM.
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  #34  
Old Dec 24, 2013, 11:14 AM
LiquidAcid LiquidAcid is offline
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I don't have anything against audio on BluRay. In fact, I think it's a good move since you just can't fix some of the inherent flaws of the CDDA (pregaps, seeking, error correction, etc.)

However already the DVD-Audio fixed all these issues, plus it's also physically much more robust. You got a bitrate of 176400 bytes/second for a stereo 44100Hz signal with 16bits depth (Redbook). A normal single-layer DVD can store 4.7GB, which amount to ~8hrs of content.

So even the Before Meteor release would fit on that.

If you just want to use a BluRay as the physical media, maybe because it's easier to manufacture (?), then please do so. But don't claim that it sounds better, because it simply doesn't.

My only real issue with BD is AACS, the copy protection system.
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  #35  
Old Dec 24, 2013, 11:31 AM
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Nah man, SE's just a bunch of greedy bastards lol
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  #36  
Old Dec 28, 2013, 10:27 PM
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Added a complete composer/arranger breakdown in the notes section (in English), added track times, linked a few more artists, and cleaned up the official tracklist a bit.
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  #37  
Old Jan 8, 2014, 04:19 AM
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The bonus / omake tracks are:
92 - Illusion
93 - Nostalgia
94 - Wakka's Theme
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  #38  
Old Jan 10, 2014, 03:12 AM
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A lot of low ratings for this album. Is this because of the format or the arrangements? I'm personally a bit disappointed with it, as very few of the arrangements match the quality of "Besaid Island". More tracks feature little more than new palettes or updated synth, and few tracks match the production quality one would expect from a PS3 era soundtrack (e.g. the FFXIII trilogy). Do others agree?
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  #39  
Old Jan 10, 2014, 04:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris View Post
A lot of low ratings for this album. Is this because of the format or the arrangements? I'm personally a bit disappointed with it, as very few of the arrangements match the quality of "Besaid Island". More tracks feature little more than new palettes or updated synth, and few tracks match the production quality one would expect from a PS3 era soundtrack (e.g. the FFXIII trilogy). Do others agree?
I agree with all of this.

I disagree with Square Enix using Blueray for their current soundtrack releases, especially when it is music not up to the same production values as the XIII saga.

There are indeed some really good arrangements on the remaster, for example I much prefer Hamauzu's versions of Mi'ihen and Tidus. But there are other arrangements which sound cheap. Some of the synth quality is not worthy of the title of 'HD Remaster.'
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  #40  
Old Jan 10, 2014, 10:25 AM
GoldfishX GoldfishX is offline
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I've only sampled a few choice tracks (so I can easily rule out the format, lol), but my impression so far would be the new versions are less exciting than the originals. I remember listening to Tidus' theme and while it isn't a great composition, I preferred Uematsu's original synth from the OST. The new version just kind of meandered along, which isn't such a good thing when the original is so mediocre. I definitely preferred the original Fleeting Dream (one of my favorite OST tracks), the arrangement didn't cut it at all.

I'm sure if I fish around, something will catch my ear (the instrument samples themselves are good), but nothing so far.
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  #41  
Old Jan 10, 2014, 12:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris View Post
A lot of low ratings for this album. Is this because of the format or the arrangements? I'm personally a bit disappointed with it, as very few of the arrangements match the quality of "Besaid Island". More tracks feature little more than new palettes or updated synth, and few tracks match the production quality one would expect from a PS3 era soundtrack (e.g. the FFXIII trilogy). Do others agree?
But Besaid Island is the worst arrangement on the entire album.... The ruining of that track is 75% of my disappointment with the whole thing.
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  #42  
Old Jan 10, 2014, 02:31 PM
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I hoped they would use a bit more live instruments, or even a few orchestrated tracks, like "The Blitzers" or the final battle themes, but nahhh... "Movement in Green" is one of the better arrangements, but on the other hand, what's that silly trumpet in the excellent "Luca" track!? It just don't sound right. Most arrangements simply are simply synth upgrades, only a handful has a original touch. A lot of tracks deserved better treatment, like the themes for Jecht and Auron. However, Tsutomu Narita did a great job with "Battle Theme" and "Fight With Seymour"! All in all, this is just for die-had fans I gues...
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  #43  
Old Jan 10, 2014, 06:32 PM
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I can't empathize with the people who find the new "Besaid Island" to be bad. If anything, I'd say the original is highly overrated. It's kinda fun but it's also too repetitive and undeveloped, and I didn't think it fit the area in the game very well either. As for other arrangements, I don't feel that most of them are really better or worse. I like both versions of "Tidus's Theme" about the same, for example. It wouldn't have been right for the game to make this into a giant arranged album, but some more changes would have been appreciated. In my opinion, all of Tsutomu Narita's tracks are definitely downgrades though. The hideous brass! It's ridiculous he even has samples that bad anymore. Sakimoto had better synth all the way back in the Final Fantasy Tactics Advance days, eleven years ago. Narita's a good composer, but good God, he can be a really shitty arranger. Some rather odd/bad choices were made in mixing "The Final Battle" as well.

I'm disappointed Nakano didn't take this opportunity to expand his compositions and make them less repetitious. I feel like Hamauzu should have just handled them because I'm pretty sure he could have done better. I'm surprised at some of the tracks that weren't changed at all. I am not surprised that I was right and this is indeed fake high-res, nor am I surprised that they did not even bother to take this opportunity to fix that horrid and completely nonsensical distortion on "'Let me blow you a kiss.'" Tsk tsk.
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  #44  
Old Jan 10, 2014, 07:46 PM
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I have an overall average to positive impression of the album, but I wish more serious arrangements were done. As others have pointed out, not a whole lot has changed. My biggest problem is with the format. I cannot forget for the life of me how I'm supposed to get the music off the disc (I don't have any PCs that can play them). Why can't I explore the directory on my PS3? Why do I have to search the internet to download music from an album I already own?

There are some standouts though. Mi'ihen was one of the better Uematsu tracks from the original, but Hamauzu turned it into gold; it's this kind of care and focus I wish would have gone into all of the tracks. Opportunities were definitely lost. I do like the references to his work on FFX piano collections and Vielen Dank.

I'm happy to hear Nakano back after his departure. His inclusion of a phrase that echoes Mel's theme from Dewprism in Luca was absolutely brilliant.

As for Uematsu... err... did he really even work on this album? Most of the tracks credited to his arrangement sound exactly like their PS2 counterparts. As if the data was just re-recorded as-is. Some of his worst contributions could have really used an overhaul. (Heck, I would have done them for free... Djose Temple needs to die and never come back...)

I hope to revisit this thread with a more detailed breakdown. I think the whole thing was a pretty interesting endeavor in the first place, and was impressed that Square would go so far as to bring Hamauzu and Nakano back for such significant work.

(and how much of Nakano's career now has been spent arranging music by Nobuo Uematsu?)
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  #45  
Old Jan 10, 2014, 07:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by _if View Post
I can't empathize with the people who find the new "Besaid Island" to be bad. If anything, I'd say the original is highly overrated. It's kinda fun but it's also too repetitive and undeveloped, and I didn't think it fit the area in the game very well either.
Disagree. The original Besaid has always been my single favorite track from the original score. It's a play of tranquil, abstract electronic timbres, minimalist figures, and a subdued, perfectly placed downtempo beat. That particular blend of elements makes the whole piece feel timeless and evocative, and exactly as developed as the core idea behind it needed to be. It's like a perfectly crafted piece of origami, and 12 years later, it still feels fresh and unique within the FF music canon, and Hamauzu's own repertoire.

This new version trades in all that sleek, restrained calm for overwrought sentiment, with bland, new-age texturing and a gratingly schmaltzy violin lead. It sounds like something from the generic "Asian Moods" budget albums sold in Japanese kitsch stores, with tacky bamboo and zen garden cover art.

It's honestly one of the most uninteresting, tone-deaf pieces of music I've ever heard from Hamauzu.
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  #46  
Old Jan 11, 2014, 07:32 AM
Mac_Tear Mac_Tear is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Psychonotes View Post
Disagree. The original Besaid has always been my single favorite track from the original score. It's a play of tranquil, abstract electronic timbres, minimalist figures, and a subdued, perfectly placed downtempo beat. That particular blend of elements makes the whole piece feel timeless and evocative, and exactly as developed as the core idea behind it needed to be. It's like a perfectly crafted piece of origami, and 12 years later, it still feels fresh and unique within the FF music canon, and Hamauzu's own repertoire.

This new version trades in all that sleek, restrained calm for overwrought sentiment, with bland, new-age texturing and a gratingly schmaltzy violin lead. It sounds like something from the generic "Asian Moods" budget albums sold in Japanese kitsch stores, with tacky bamboo and zen garden cover art.

It's honestly one of the most uninteresting, tone-deaf pieces of music I've ever heard from Hamauzu.
I totally agree! The new arrangement lost nearly all its charm with this dreary arrangement.
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  #47  
Old Jan 12, 2014, 03:31 PM
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... ... ... ... ... ... .. .. .. .. .. . . . .

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  #48  
Old Jan 12, 2014, 03:50 PM
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What is "better" is always a subjective thing so people who say they like original version are right and the people who say they like new arrangements are right too, from their point of view

Now my opinion lol - I'm glad I'm not a die-hard FFX fan because this thing is a waste of money.
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  #49  
Old Jan 12, 2014, 04:43 PM
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Now my opinion lol - I'm glad I'm not a die-hard FFX fan because this thing is a waste of money.
Please don't confuse the die-hard FFX fans with die-hard FFX music fans. I can't stand the game. (And now Square wants to make a 3rd entry... ugh... at least it will lead to another excellent soundtrack).
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  #50  
Old Jan 12, 2014, 06:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guitarist500 View Post
Besaid Island's re-arrangement is more creatively arranged than the original which felt repetitive and didn't seem to fit the area well compared to the re-arrangement,
Well, we're just in the realm of personal taste here. I think the original is much more creative, while the new one sounds like Asian muzak.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Guitarist500 View Post
yet people insist the outdated original is better.
You lost me here. In what sense is it "outdated"? The original track could have been released today.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Guitarist500 View Post
What do you guys want? Faithful re-mastering or re-arrangements that are different in a good way?
Not sure who you're addressing here. Nobody's expressing contradictory wants, and most people would probably have been happy with no changes to the music.
Personally, if you're going to re-arrange a piece, the only thing I care about is whether it's a good arrangement. I doubt anyone's any different.
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  #51  
Old Jan 12, 2014, 08:04 PM
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Please don't confuse the die-hard FFX fans with die-hard FFX music fans. I can't stand the game.
That's true, there's a number of OSTs I like but have no interest in corresponding movie/game etc.

btw I've never played FFX/X-2, haven't even tried XD
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  #52  
Old Jan 13, 2014, 04:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Efendija View Post
btw I've never played FFX/X-2, haven't even tried XD
Consider yourself lucky...
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  #53  
Old Jan 13, 2014, 05:02 PM
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To each his own. I for one love both the soundtrack and the game. One of the few games which had an instant immersive effect.
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  #54  
Old Feb 15, 2014, 08:30 PM
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This is such a mixed bag to me. Playing the remaster, I actually think all of the remixes I hate sound at least like they belong in the game, but I'd say it's pretty split on the number of tracks I think are improvements or downgrade.

I wish Uematsu would get over his 80s synth rock fetish that pervades all over this and FFXIV 1.0 - I know that stuff's always been there, but I feel like working with less led to creative arranging back in the day. The new arrangements of Fight with Seymour and the battle theme make my ears bleed. On the other hand, I love the arrangements of Tidus's Theme, The Thunder Plains, Wandering, and Movement in Green. Even Mi'ihen Highroad - which may be up there among my least favorite Uematsu tracks ever - got an immensely good overhaul, making the monotony of the track almost a strong point.
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  #55  
Old Feb 15, 2014, 09:43 PM
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I wish Uematsu would get over his 80s synth rock fetish that pervades all over this and FFXIV 1.0 - I know that stuff's always been there, but I feel like working with less led to creative arranging back in the day. The new arrangements of Fight with Seymour and the battle theme make my ears bleed.
I thought the same thing when I heard the mixes of these two tracks. They sound pretty awful and are not even mixed right (entire parts are drowned out, especially on Seymour). He would have been better off de-mixing these into SNES-style synth. His rock instrumentation has been unappealing since Blue Dragon (and this is coming from a general fan of that style in VGM). He legitimately cannot recreate his magic on NES/SNES or even Playstation with whatever he's using now.
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  #56  
Old Feb 17, 2014, 08:07 PM
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I just listened to this and think it's pretty bad. So many lifeless arrangements which are neither satisfying enhancements nor creative experiments. There are a high number of failures, and only a small handful of successes. "Movement in Green" and "Mi'ihen Highroad" are the two best in my opinion. The former, while not as good as the original, is an expansive cultural trek which retains a nice pop flavour; and the guitar solo in the latter is immaculately produced. Other good moments include "Creep", which is greatly improved upon in both mood and clarity; and "Thunder Plains", which has an infectious tinkery charm. I also appreciate the "Besaid" arrangement and its style which is at the same time similar and different to the original. "Guadosalam" is given an adequate if slightly dull facelift.

But oh dear. "Luca" is one of the biggest musical disappointments ever. "Calm Before the Storm" was similarly bastardised (Nakano what are you doing ). The mixing in "Wandering" is diabolical. "Battle Theme" is completely ruined by the brass. Even Hamauzu's arrangements of "Via Purifico" and "Beyond the Darkness" are, while fantastic, lazy re-hashes. The man also didn't take advantage of the opportunity to do a piano transcription of "Djose Temple". Frustratingly, "Ridess the Shoopuf?" and "Braska's Daughter" are still here. This soundtrack effectively keeps what's bad about the original, and makes what was good about the original worse.

At least "Lulu's Theme" was left alone!
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  #57  
Old Feb 18, 2014, 02:32 AM
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Other good moments include "Creep", which is greatly improved upon in both mood and clarity
I largely agree with your comments, but Creep stood out to me as one of the lazier remakes here. You can even hear the male choral samples cutting out cold.

I would say there's actually a lot of beautiful music on this set that's let down by a lack of cohesion between the different arrangers' mixing styles. The tonal balance from track to track is all over the place, and some pieces just sound downright cheap and weedy. It could be argued that it's the mastering engineer's job to bring some unity to such a wide range of material, produced by many different people (each likely in isolation with different gear), but by the sounds of things there was only so much he could do here with what he was given.

The original soundtrack - its own mastering failings aside - was just as diverse, but consistent.
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  #58  
Old Feb 18, 2014, 03:01 PM
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That's a good point regarding the mastering. As for "Creep", maybe I like it because I love the original and now I have a 5-minute version of it. I just find it a fair bit darker than the original. The abrupt choral sample doesn't bother me too greatly.
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  #59  
Old Feb 18, 2014, 04:20 PM
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Quote:
The original soundtrack - its own mastering failings aside - was just as diverse, but consistent.
I actually think FFX's soundtrack is the most inconsistent of the series' soundtrack in terms of both style and quality. Hamauzu's work is gold here, Uematsu produced some good battle themes and main themes, and Nakano created some masterpieces. But mediocre character themes (e.g. Rikku, Yuna, Seymour), monotonous drone tracks (e.g. The Void, The Temple Players, Decision on the Dock), and other clear missteps (e.g. The Trials, Djose Temple, Ridess the Shoopuf) hurt the overall experience for me. There were also way to many variants of the Hymn of the Fayth and Seymour's theme.

I had hope the HD remake would make things consistent, but I pretty much agree with what Murray said: "This soundtrack effectively keeps what's bad about the original, and makes what was good about the original worse."
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  #60  
Old Feb 18, 2014, 05:48 PM
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Haven't listened to HD yet, but I have to strongly agree with Chris that the character themes in FFX were really weak.

X-2's theme for Paine, on the other hand, I enjoy a great deal. Especially in piano form.
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