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Composer Mitsuto Suzuki talks working with co-director Motomu Toriyama on FFVII Remake

Composer Mitsuto Suzuki talks working with co-director Motomu Toriyama on FFVII Remake

Written by Brayden — 11 May 2020

Famitsu has continued their interview series with the staff behind Final Fantasy VII Remake's music and their latest installment is with composer Mitsuto Suzuki.

As part of his interview he discussed working with co-director Motomu Toriyama someone he has worked with for the majority of his career at Square Enix.

All translations are thanks to 黒凧 BlackKite.

Famitsu: Hamauzu-san was in charge of new songs, but how did you decide on allotting [the work]?

Suzuki: The general allotment was decided by the Co-Director (Motomu) Toriyama and the sound staff Kawamori. Toriyama sent orders to me directly, and I produced them based on tangible images like "This is needed here" and "I want it to play it this way right here". As for Kawamori, we talked about the sound while standing; the conversations were relatively loose like "This may be needed here" or "Could I instead ask you to do this?", but many of them were related to deciding allotments including information sharing.

Famitsu: We think there's also a lot of dance music in the Wall Market, but what kind of offer came from the developers?

Suzuki: When we met with the developers, Toriyama immediately sent me a mail with a storyboard that reads: "In order to do choreography, we first need to have xx [number of] BGMs with around xx minutes". Most of the usual work was to match the sound timing with the pictures in the cutscenes, but this time we needed to decide the measures and compositions for the BGMs beforehand.

As we proceeded through researching about the direction, Toriyama sent another mail saying "I'll come to inspect this weekend", and what we did at "that night" were mostly reflected at this event scene BGM (laughs). For a tangible musicianship, we matched it up with a cabaret-like location while leaving the Showa feel intact, and we created dance music with a standard interval of 10 years from the 80's, 90's and 2000's. It was fun to create the music as well, but when I think how they would be used in the choreography afterwards, it became double more fun.

Finally, you can also read some of what sound designer Makoto Ise said in the previous installment below.

However, when I tried looking back, the existence of BGMs in FFVII is indeed very large, so I became convinced that playing a lot of them would make it more like FFVII Remake. Afterwards, I did BGM designs for each location together with sound members Kawamori & Ise, and Toriyama who controls the presentations.

BGM designs were pre-emptive meetings on designing implementations of BGM - from the place & timing to play BGMs to switching BGMs - under Toriyama's presentation policy while looking at it in the actual machine. But it did take quite some time. While Toriyama's images have become clear, the BGM data also became enormous. Most of the cutscenes etc also have exclusives, and we also prepared parts that change based on the situation in fields and battles, so we added a large quantity of BGMs with different arrangements.