Idol Worship: Bo and Ippo

Not a spoiler
If you haven’t played Phantasy Star 4, just pay this no mind.

The culmination of the Phantasy Star series, rather appropriately, contains the series best soundtrack. Ippo outdid his easily outdoable PS3 score, but more impressively, outshone the first two games soundtracks. One of the largest cartridges at the time, PS4 has around 45 tracks in it, and many are superb. I had a hard time deciding which few to post here and I recommend you download a GYM plugin for your audio player and then the whole soundtrack.

This song is played at a tragic event in the game (eat your heart out, Aerith). I still find it very depressing. Pain

Another somber track, although I’m not sure if it’s supposed to be since the whole game makes me sad. Motavia Town

The battle theme. You’ll hear this significantly less than PS2’s battle theme. Meet Them Head On

Yet another sad piece. PS4 does a wonderful job tying the games together and making you feel extra included if you played the rest of the series. Requiem for Lutz

Neither of these men is hugely successful or famous and they are not as talented as Nobuo Uematsu or Yuzo Koshiro, but they have still composed great music. Because I cannot remove nostalgia from what I hear, their music strikes an emotional chord with me. They embody the sound of my childhood and it is entirely possible the only reason I keep games in my life is to relive my past. Writing this article took hours, as opposed to my usual ten minutes because I couldn’t just listen to the few tracks I selected for you. I couldn’t help but listen to entire soundtracks, then get sad about Phantasy Star 4 and look for pictures, and read reviews, looking for other people who remember it as fondly as I. It was especially hard to not give away any major plot points, but it’s worth it because I want you to play and enjoy these games. These unknown composers are important to me and I thank them for their music that sustains my memories.

Where are Bo and Ippo today? I’m not sure. It’s very hard to get information on obscure Japanese game composers if you don’t speak Japanese. They may have moved on, deciding working in “real” music is more fun or more profitable. The games they scored came out over a decade ago so they may have simply retired. If anyone has more info on these two, please send it my way.

Full credits for Tokuhiko Uwabo:
Alex Kidd in Miracle World – Composer
Battle Golfer Yui – Sound programming
Castle of Illusion – Possibly did port from Genesis
Columns – Composer
Choplifter – Sound efects
E-Swat – Sound coordinator
Fantasy Zone – Port from arcade
Panic! – Supervisor
Phantasy Star – Composer
Phantsy Star 2 – Compser
Revenge of Shinobi – Sound programmer
Sonic 3 – Sound programming
Sonic & Knuckles – Sound programming
Sorcerian – Port
Space Harrier – Port from arcade
Space Harrier 2 – Composer
Streets of Rage – Sound programming
Super Daisenryaku – Composer
Super Monaco GP – Composer
Quackshot – Sound producer
Y’s – Port from TG16
Zillion – Composer

Full credits for Izuho Takeuchi:
Aerial Assault – Composer?
Assault City – Composer?
Forgotten Worlds – Likely did the port from arcade
Land of Illusion – Composer?
Mega Man 7 – Compser?
Phantasy Star 3 – Composer
Phantasy Star 4 – Composer
Psychic World – Composer?
Sonic 2 – Sound assistant
Y’s – Port from TG16

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14 years ago

Hey just wanted to say i loved this blog. I never leave responses but you’ve done a ton of research and answered a lot of questions I had about these guys. Keep up the great work and lets both keep our fingers crossed on a REAL Phantasy Star sequel!

13 years ago

“Ippo worked with Bo on porting the Y’s music, originally composed by the oft mentioned Yuzo Koshiro, from the TG16 to the Master System.”

I knew Bo and Ippo were talented people, but I did not know that they possessed the ability to travel through time! How else could they port music from a 1989 game into a 1988 one?

All irony aside. Ys was originally released for NEC PC-8801 in 1987. That’s two years before the PC Engine (TG16) one.