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Motoi Sakuraba

Overview Biography Discography Game Projects Interviews

Motoi Sakuraba Date of Birth: August 5, 1965 (Akita)
Education: Graduated from the University of Meiji
General Interests: Motorcycling
Instruments: Piano, Synthesizer
Game Works: Tales, Star Ocean, Mario Sports, Baten Kaitos

Employment History

Company Tenure Role
Wolfteam 1989 - 1995 Composer
Namco Tales Studio 2003 - Composer
Freelance 1995 - Composer

Brief Profile

Motoi Sakuraba is a prolific progressive rock musician that principally composes for video games. During university, Sakuraba became the composer and keyboardist of the band Deja Vu. After they split after the release of their debut album, Sakuraba produced the solo album Gikyokuonsou. He went on to join the game company Wolfteam, working initially on scores such as the Zan, Hiouden, and Arcus series and, after assimilation into Telenet Japan, Tales of Phantasia and Parlor simulations. Sakuraba's links to Wolfteam have largely been responsible for his vast array of works as a freelancer. He has continued to craft light-hearted scores for the highly successful Tales series with Shinji Tamura.

In addition to his work with Namco Tales Studio, Sakuraba has regularly worked with Camelot Software Planning under his former collaborator Masaaki Uno. After producing serious progressive rock scores for the Shining series and Beyond the Beyond, he went on to create light-hearted accompaniments to the Mario Sports and Golden Sun series, among others. Sakuraba has also regularly worked on behalf of tri-Ace, whose game projects are published by Square Enix. His works on behalf of their Star Ocean and Valkyrie Profile series have been chiefly responsible for his mainstream popularity and he has interpreted these works in several arranged albums, voice mix albums, and live concerts.

In addition to these commitments, Sakuraba has produced colourful scores on behalf of tri-Crescendo's Baten Kaitos series and Eternal Sonata. He has also created music for miscellaneous game soundtrack, various television series, and albums by his record label Team Entertainment. Away from composing, Motoi Sakuraba is a quiet family man who enjoys the company of his wife Yuko and his daughter Mio as well as the occasional motorbike ride. However, his opportunities for personal time are limited given he is the most prolific composer in an industry dominated by workaholics. He continues to meticulously produce over 250 tracks a year on behalf of Namco, Camelot, tri-Ace, tri-Crescendo, and other clients.

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