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Dragon Quest composer Koichi Sugiyama has passed away at age 90

Bullet Club

Gold Member

Square Enix Mourns Loss of Composer Koichi Sugiyama​

Koichi Sugiyama, composer for many SQUARE ENIX games and widely known for the music of the DRAGON QUEST series, passed away on September 30th 2021. We commemorate his lifetime's work and mourn his passing.

Comment from Yosuke Matsuda, President and CEO, SQUARE ENIX Co., Ltd.

I would like to take this opportunity to offer my deepest sympathy to Koichi Sugiyama's friends and loved ones. Words cannot express the scale of the contribution made by Koichi Sugiyama from the birth of the DRAGON QUEST series until now. I remember seeing him conduct the orchestra in a DRAGON QUEST concert as if it were yesterday.

I thank and honor him for his long years of service and the many wonderful pieces of music he has written for our games, and offer my heartfelt prayers for the repose of his soul.




Koichi Sugiyama has passed away. Composers such as "Dragon Quest" series and "Kazerai no Shiren". He was 90 years old.


 
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Orenji Neko

Member
:messenger_loudly_crying: さようなら杉山様。This hurts。I thank him for so much wonderful music。A music for my life from Dragon Quest and elsewhere。The big boss of video game ost。 Will listen to remember especially favorite like DQ3 and 5 symphony suite。
 

Belthazar

Member
The end of an era for sure. He was one of the most legendary composers in video games history, but also a colossal piece of shit. Condolences to his loved ones, anyway.

But this does indicate that DQ XII will be an even bigger departure from what we're used to than anticipated... I'm curious to see what direction they go for the soundtrack now.
 

carlosrox

Banned
Damn, that's a big one. He's responsible for some incredible and iconic music.

on the other hand he is a sad example of a human being.

I mean, having some shitty beliefs may not necessarily mean you're an irredeemable piece of shit.

Plus how sure are we that all that stuff that's been said about him is entirely accurate?

Still, most cases I'd like to separate the art from the artist. If what he's purported to have said is indeed true that's pretty crappy then.

Still not gonna dance over his grave like a fucking nut.
 
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ranmafan

Member
A sad moment for us Dragon Quest fans especially. Losing one of the three main pillars of the franchise is a huge loss no doubt. And while yes there was a lot of things about him that were not great, his music was at least a joy for the gaming world, Japan, and all those who listened to it.
 
I learned how to play piano because of this man. He's an icon and a legend. He's wrote some of my favorite gaming pieces. His role in the development of video game music can't be understated.

Here is an article I wrote about him a few years ago.

 
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Dude had some very sad beliefs about denying the war crimes Japan committed during the second World War, alongside other things which wouldn't be surprising coming from a 90-year old. I do admit I let it slide a little both because of my affection to the original material and also because he really was born in an entirely different time and it's not uncommon for people with such advanced age carry outdated beliefs and point of views. I think it's the same on how I act towards Lovecraft; I don't necessarily admire the person for all its faults but I can understand where such ignorance came from. These people were born almost a century ago.

Dragon Quest is my favourite JRPG series and many of these tunes are among my all-time favourites and have enrichened many of my favourite gaming moments and memories. I'll mourn this.

People who will actively celebrate his passing like it's a good thing disgust me. He was an old man with very outdated thoughts, not an active evildoer.
 
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Fools idol

Member
Dude had done very sad beliefs about denying the war crimes Japan committed during the second World War, alongside other things which wouldn't be surprising coming from a 90-year old. I do admit I let it slide a little both because of my affection to the original material and also because he really was born in an entirely different time and it's not uncommon for people with such advanced age carry outdated beliefs and point of views. I think it's the same on how I act towards Lovecraft; I don't necessarily admire the person for all its faults but I can understand where such ignorance came from.

Dragon Quest is my favourite JRPG series and many of these tunes are among my all-time favourites and have enrichened many of my favourite gaming moments and memories. I'll mourn this.

People who will actively celebrate his passing like it's a good thing disgust me. He was an old man with very outdated thoughts, not an active evildoer.

Yeah, how I feel too. it's the Lovecraft argument to some degree, but obviously to a much lesser extent (Lovecraft was a product of his racist socioeconomic environment and fear mongering press of the time).

I have a 93 year old gramps who was in WW2 who is much the same, awfully resentful of the germans and openly racist towards the Japanese as a lot of his generation are. I call him out on it all the time but at 93 he doesnt give two fucks.
 
We aren't allowed to talk about politics here so let me just say it really fucks be up how people don't notice that acting like assholes will put others against them. It's like instead of trying to be better, they just want to be mean.

Back on topic, yeah, rest in peace to a music legend, even if a far from perfect human being. His relevance won't go away anytime soon.
 

SunlitSweord

Neo Member
Please don't bring retardera rethoric here.

People are made by lot of thing, words, actions, will, etc. Label a person for just one thing is terribly stupid.

Japan is yet to make an official apology for war crimes in China, so it's not a surprise. Different culture, story.
A quick Google search returned this:


I've never been invested in the Dragon Quest series, but the music from DQVIII was so good.
 
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ULTROS!

People seem to like me because I am polite and I am rarely late. I like to eat ice cream and I really enjoy a nice pair of slacks.
Separating his art from his beliefs, he contributed a lot of important musical works. He even influenced some people with his musical works.

I don’t like his revisionist beliefs and what he’s done but that’s another topic.

And let’s be honest, what positive impact and influence has Era done to other people?
 
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Isa

Member
Expected but still sad. Love the man and his work. My GF and I were actually playing several of his OST's this past weekend getting all nostalgic and then my girl booted up DQ11S on Xbox, and I showed her the first 4 titles too. The visuals, story, and music all came together to make something magical. And especially back when videogames were so new. I really hope Yuji Horii is able to stay with us for plenty more fruitful years. What a legend.
 

Cyberpunkd

Gold Member
Still, most cases I'd like to separate the art from the artist. If what he's purported to have said is indeed true that's pretty crappy then.
I don’t get the mental gymnastics of that, it’s not like the world has 10 artists. If Leonardo da Vinci was a child molester would we be having Mona Lisa in the Louvre?

Sugiyama was a thrash of a human being and the world is a better place without him, sad the reaper waited for 90 years to do his duty.
 

Perfo

Thirteen flew over the cuckoo's nest
I don’t get the mental gymnastics of that, it’s not like the world has 10 artists. If Leonardo da Vinci was a child molester would we be having Mona Lisa in the Louvre?

Sugiyama was a thrash of a human being and the world is a better place without him, sad the reaper waited for 90 years to do his duty.

What crimes Sugiyama did commit? Because being a child molester is an hideous crime... while having supposedly horrible views or opinions is a totally different case.

In any case the artist will be missed. I really wonder who'll be his successor now and if he managed to score some of DQXII's OST before passing away.
 
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SkylineRKR

Member
The resetera topic is 300+ posts of cheering. You'd think Hitler himself just died.

This makes them not an inch better. Probably worse, even.

Holocaust and war crime denial etc is a stupid thing to do in my culture, but no one canceled past DQ games for it before this whole cancel culture got it on. And its not like all of this was known just yesterday. They're hypocrites jumping the bandwagon at best.

If he actively killed people its a different matter, but as far as I know he voiced a certain opinion. And things not uncommon in Japanese culture itself. Pick a lane. Cancel all of Japan, then.
 

SunlitSweord

Neo Member
I don’t get the mental gymnastics of that, it’s not like the world has 10 artists. If Leonardo da Vinci was a child molester would we be having Mona Lisa in the Louvre?

Sugiyama was a thrash of a human being and the world is a better place without him, sad the reaper waited for 90 years to do his duty.
Can someone bring me up to speed? I know the guy had terrible views and opinions, but did he commit some unforgivable crime? Comparing a man with backwards views to a child predator version of Leonardo da Vinci from an alternate timeline is very strange if you ask me.
 

ParaSeoul

Member

The first time an Era post has made me laugh with it rather than at it
 

Perfo

Thirteen flew over the cuckoo's nest
Can someone bring me up to speed? I know the guy had terrible views and opinions, but did he commit some unforgivable crime? Comparing a man with backwards views to a child predator version of Leonardo da Vinci from an alternate timeline is very strange if you ask me.
Here, from Wikipedia... I'm not sure if there's more to it though.

Political activities and beliefs​

Sugiyama was a Nanjing Massacre denialist, stating that the facts regarding it are "selective in nature". He was one of the signatories on "The Facts", a full-page ad published by The Washington Post on June 14, 2007, which was written by a number of Japanese politicians and academics in response to the passing of United States House of Representatives House Resolution 121, which sought an official apology from the Government of Japan regarding their involvement of using "comfort women", which were women who were used as sexual slaves by Japanese soldiers during World War II.[15][16][17]

In 2012, Sugiyama wrote an editorial where he thought that Japan was in a state of "civil war between Japanese and anti-Japanese". Giving examples, he argued that the Japanese media portrayed acts of patriotism negatively, such as performing the National Anthem of Japan or raising the Japanese flag. In addition, he thought that the demands of the Japanese anti-nuclear movement, which grew following the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster of 2011, to immediately dismantle all nuclear energy facilities without offering any alternate solutions damaged the country's ability to defend itself.[18]

In 2015, Sugiyama made an appearance on the Japanese Culture Channel Sakura television program Hi Izuru Kuni Yori where he was shown agreeing with views shared by Japanese politician Mio Sugita who claimed there was no need for LGBT education in Japanese schools, as well as dismissing concerns about high suicide rates among the community. Sugiyama added that the lack of children born from LGBT couples was an important topic to discuss, also suggesting that Japan was more empowering to women than South Korea.[19][20] He later recanted his statement by saying that LGBT couples have existed throughout human history and he supports the use of governments to occasionally help them.[21]

He was also a board member of the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals.[22]
 

PJX

Gold Member
I don’t get the mental gymnastics of that, it’s not like the world has 10 artists. If Leonardo da Vinci was a child molester would we be having Mona Lisa in the Louvre?

Sugiyama was a thrash of a human being and the world is a better place without him, sad the reaper waited for 90 years to do his duty.
Fucking hell what a shit take. Go back to Resetera. You are a trash human being with that kind of thinking. Imagine celebrating a man's death because his opinion and beliefs doesn't match yours. Comparing opinions and beliefs to actual crimes, you're a special kind of person.
 
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SkylineRKR

Member
I don’t get the mental gymnastics of that, it’s not like the world has 10 artists. If Leonardo da Vinci was a child molester would we be having Mona Lisa in the Louvre?

Sugiyama was a thrash of a human being and the world is a better place without him, sad the reaper waited for 90 years to do his duty.

This idiology is very backwards. With this I picture people cheering at a plaza, when someone is being hung. Its like the dark ages all over again. Wishing someone dead makes you not a better person than Sugiyama. It seems almost commonplace to a lot of folks these days. Like, he''s dead? oh well good riddance, he had shitty views anyway'.

And I think a proven (not accused, which is something Ree often mixes up) child molester is worse than someone voicing a belief. But who am I. And even then, in the 1400's standards were completely different than they are now.
 

Cyberpunkd

Gold Member
Fucking hell what a shit take. Go back to Resetera. You are a trash human being with that kind of thinking. Imagine celebrating a man's death because his opinion and beliefs doesn't match yours. Comparing opinions and beliefs to actual crimes, you're a special kind of person.
He was a Japan equivalent of a Holocaust denier. Nanjing Massacre is well documented and one of many atrocities Japan committed in Asia - denying it is not an opinion, it’s intentional lie. Fucking hell, it takes really something to cheer on a Nazi party member (Rabe) saving the Chinese out of his personal responsibility as a member of a Master Race.
 

NeoIkaruGAF

Gold Member
I was never big on DQ games or music, although I appreciated DQ8 quite a lot at the time of release.
The series’s music never really struck me as something on the level of other industry bigs. The Symphonic Suites were on another level, that goes almost without saying, but the actual in-game music rarely showed great composing skills and most of all, it almost never exploited the hardware’s capabilities past the NES era. Feel free to educate me on the matter; as I said, my experience with DQ is limited.

Sugiyama passing means that one of the pillars of DQ is gone forever. Nostalgia and Sugiyama’s true merits apart, if the popular reception of DQ11’s OST is anything to go by, not a few people will be happy that somebody else will do DQ’s music from now on, regardless of their opinion of the man himself.

Anyway, a real legend of video games has passed. I think enough shit has been thrown at him while he was still alive, he can be spared the vitriol so soon after his death, at least for a while. Like someone said, it’s not like he was an actual murderer or something, as far as I know.
 

Yoshichan

And they made him a Lord of Cinder. Not for virtue, but for might. Such is a lord, I suppose. But here I ask. Do we have a sodding chance?
Rest in peace. I’ve been an avid listener since DQVIII which I originally bought only to play the included FFXII demo... then I became in love with DQ and most of that love came from Sugiyamas composition.
 
Hated the score of DQ11 to the point I dropped the game on PlayStation. But I installed the retro music mod on PC and it proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that his work was iconic.
 

SkylineRKR

Member
Hated the score of DQ11 to the point I dropped the game on PlayStation. But I installed the retro music mod on PC and it proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that his work was iconic.

The OG PS4 version is so grating that for that reason alone I'll settle with S despite the graphics being a bit worse.
 

Hugare

Member
He had some really questionable beliefs, but he was literally an old man yelling at clouds.

Dude was really old, born and raised in another era, so I get it.

My 92 years old grandpa also has some really dated opinions, but I'm not gonna cancel my +90 years old relative because of some shitty opinions that were probably indocrinated into him since he was a kid.

So I hope that he rests in peace.

I may be a piece of shit for saying this, but part of me is happy to know that he is not going to compose for DQ anymore.

DQ series was being his hostage, literaly. He was bound by contract to make music for it until he dies. But he was clearly not into it anymore and not giving a fuck about it.

I'll be kicking a dead horse here but DQ XI songs are just unbearable.

He composed some pretty iconic stuff yearsa go tho
 
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