This post will highlight Dual Orb II, an RPG for your SNES you probably never played or knew about. And I guarantee none of your friends recommended you play it.. but it was only released in Japan. Why should we highlight its music? Well, it just so happens a legendary Sunsoft 5 composer wrote the soundtrack. So there.
Developed and published in 1994 by I’Max, this RPG was known for it’s brutal difficulty, high encounter rate, and cliched plot. [EDIT- 10/24/12] – Stupid Wikipedia has this game listed as being a US release. It is NOT a US release – it is a Japan only game for Super Famicom. I went ahead and corrected it. No wonder I’ve never heard of it.
The composers are actually very interesting. Well, one of them.
The composer duo is Nobuyuki Hara and Yu Yoshida. Yu Yoshida is a relative unknown. All I can find out about him is he did the music for this game. But Nobuyuki Hara…
Nobuyuki Hara was paired with Naoki Kodaka on many projects for Sunsoft, including this:
Naoki Kodaka would go on to write music Batman: Return of the Joker, a VERY iconic NES Sunsoft 5 chipset OST. Hara? Well, he goes on to write music for Dual Orb II. Let’s take a look at some of his work. It’s an RPG and it has a battle theme. I like battle themes. Let’s see what he can do: (all credits for Dual Orb II music: InsaneVisionary)
Beautiful. A perfect SNES era battle theme. Multiple synthesized trumpets, orchestra hits, and synth strings. It’s vaguely reminiscent of Kenji Ito and Uematsu. How about some more?
Some interesting vibes. Not a spectacular “cave theme” but good enough. I think a lot of what I like about this soundtrack is really just instrument choice. The layers really stack up well. Again, vaguely reminiscent of Uematsu.
A lot of why I’m highlighting this game is because, well, it’s interesting to me to hear RPG music from this era that I haven’t heard before… because I just really assumed I played ALL the SNES RPGs. This next one starts out pretty intense for a “forest theme” and then backs off.
And here’s some “dungeon theme”. Again, I love the layers and reverb. It reminds me vaguely of the Sunsoft 5.
Well, I hope you liked the music to this game. Leave feedback and check out this playlist for the complete soundtrack.