If it hasn’t been made clear by now, Masahiro Sakurai takes every aspect of video game creation very seriously. We’re not just saying that because of his beloved “Creating Games” YouTube Channel, but instead, we’re saying that because the videos within that channel highlight many experiences he’s had that indicate just how seriously he takes things. For example, he’s talked multiple times about music on his channel, and his latest video highlighted a pair of songs that required both his input and a true understanding of music. An understanding that even Sakurai admitted he misunderstood for one piece he wanted in Super Smash Bros Ultimate.
The song in question was from the retro title Athena, a game many have likely never heard of. Sakurai wanted to “modernize” the song for the fighting game and asked his composer to do a certain thing with the track. However, to his surprise, the results were basically the opposite of what he requested. As he would find out, the song had two different main melodies that came together to compose the track. Sakurai focused on one melody, and the composer focused on the other. It’s a fascinating breakdown of music and how things work when making even a “remaster” of a song.
The other track that Masahiro Sakurai talked about was the main theme for the game Psycho Soldier. As he reveals, it was apparently the first game to have a vocal track. He was in the recording studio when they did the vocals for the track, and like the original game, they did both an English and Japanese version for the game. The reasoning behind this, and how Sakurai helped put things together, further showcases how much care he puts into things. You can watch the full breakdown of these songs below:
The lesson that Sakurai imparts at the end is about how the original piece is “always right” and that just because you hear or think you hear something different doesn’t make it correct. This is another reason why so many people like Sakurai. Not only does he have a deep love of gaming history, which these two tracks prove, but he wants things done the correct way over the “personal” way. He’s willing to admit when he does something wrong, and to that end, work hard to make things not only right but faithful to what came before.
We’ll no doubt get more music-themed videos like this in the future.