Seiken Densetsu Music Complete Book :: Liner Notes Translated by Gerardo Iuliani
Kenji Ito - Composer (Final Fantasy Adventure, Dawn of Mana, Children of Mana)
It's said that things change a lot in just ten years, but I never expected I'd end up experiencing something like this...
Twenty years ago, I had been approached by Square and entered to work there for two years, but I was still in the middle of my "apprenticeship", so I wasn't still recognized as a new composer. Thus, the very first title for which I was allowed to compose entirely by myself was Seiken Densetsu: Final Fantasy Gaiden (Final Fantasy Adventure). In total, the team that worked in the game was composed of ten people, all led by producer Koichi ishii. And since we all were youngsters in our middle twenties, we worked filled with both "passion" and "confidence", to ensure at least one of us would bring fun to lots of players...
I still remember that, right before Seiken Densetsu: Final Fantasy Gaiden was completed, we were in the middle of a play-test period in which we made around ten normal players try the game to find bugs and other operability issues. A lot of them ended up becoming moved to the point of even crying upon reaching the scenes right the final battle and the ending. I still remember that when I heard these things from the other members of the staff in my room, it made me so happy that I ended up crying myself. There were a lot of hardships back then, but I was pretty glad to have worked on it and that our feelings could reach the players.
Later on, the environment in Square gradually changed and I was succeeded in my role as a composer by Mr. Hiroki Kikuta and Ms. Yoko Shimomura, and before I even noticed, twenty years had passed. And right now, I'm very glad that I even got the chance to work on a memorial box like this one. I also think that Ms. Sachiko Miyano did a great work at arranging our compositions and I'd therefore like to take advantage of this chance to thank her.
Likewise, I want to tell something to those that always loved the Seiken Densetsu series during the past twenty years: I'll be very thankful that you bought this album if you can enjoy once again the memories of playing these games as you listen to the songs. Really, thank you for these twenty years. And thus, we'll see what the future will hold for us...
Hiroki Kikuta - Composer (Secret of Mana, Seiken Densetsu 3)
It's 20 if we put it in years. It'd be 7300 if we put it in days, though that would it make seem much longer, so I'd rather think of it as just twenty summers. Even the summer from twenty years ago was as hot as this year's.
Around the time I began working at Square, I didn't know anything about the development of commercial games. While companies have a rather cold and detached image in the eyes of society, the environment inside there felt to me every bit as harmonious as the gatherings for club activities I had back at school. It felt very comfortable we could actually work producing software freely. Frankly, I thought that Square was very supportive of the joyful curiosity that youngsters have, which made the company very attractive to everyone. It even seemed that all of the members that became project leaders at some point had entered the company around the same time. Everyone had an unbelievable fervor and passion for creating new things spiralling in their hearts.
I spent my twenties there, which were filled with frustrations and disgraces. While my thirties were filled with surprises and challenges, it was also there were I actually experienced what working was for the first time.
To me, the Seiken Densetsu series was an expression of rebellion against the frae we call "companies". While they restrain us ever since we're children, push us as they like, and fill us with wounds, they also have such an overwhelmingly strong power to continue fighting everyday. As they're so pompous that they try to force individuals to submit to them, and coerce them into the "twisted policies", we silently made this as our beautiful revolution banner. I wished that the melodies I created would sway the hearts of the children and help them to get a firm grip on the future they want to create by themselves. As you can see, the answers to that are among the lines you all can read here: we're friends.
Yoko Shimomura - Composer (Legend of Mana, Heroes of Mana)
First, congratulations to the Seiken Densetsu series on its 20th Anniversary! It was a great, great honor for me to have participated in such a wonderful project as this. Among the three composers, it looks like I was the one who got to put on the largest face out there, regardless of our order of entry to the company. (*laughs*)
20th Anniversary... 20 years... it's really incredible. The babies that were born screaming "gyah!" back then would now be fully grown adults. Oh yes, as for my own age... (*stays silent*) But it isn't embarrassing at all to grow older! That's something I can say with full confidence. Luckily, and thanks to all the courage, love and confidence that was put into this series, it reached its 20th Anniversary.
The first time I was involved with the Seiken Densetsu series was back on '98. I really wanted to work on a fantasy-styled RPG, and I was very glad that I finally got the chance to do so. Mysterious animals, soft and vivid colors, sad stories, stories that made you think, and mysterious lines suddenly coming out from the mouths of everyone. Somehow, it felt very fresh, filled with love and shining encouraged by all of it, I even proposed quite a few ideas. When my role was finally settled, I was very happy, but very confused too.
That was because everyone who played the original Seiken Densetsu and heard the songs that Kenji Ito-san made for it ended up being very moved by them and said "They were such great songs". And thus, given that the songs for the second and third games composed by Kikuta-san were greatly appreciated by everyone too, I was under a lot of pressure when I was finally given the role to compose for the next game. I was very anxious and frequently had thoughts such as "Was it really okay for them to put me in charge of the next game of such a series?" and "Am I good enough for this?".
I began working for Square in the '93. Kikuta-san had a booth in one of the corridors I had to go through to reach my workplace, so I had to listen to the music from Seiken Densetsu 2 everyday. Although I hadn't been working for the company for a long time back then, I honestly felt that the music for Seiken Densetsu 2 was pretty much a step short of actually becoming worries, tears and smiles. How couldn't I respect such a great kind of music? Therefore, shouldn't I have to do my best, without hesitating at all, too?
The day in which we played the medley and the tunes from Seiken Densetsu 1, 2 and 3 began flowing throughout the place, I got all misty-eyes before I had even noticed it. While I was a little shocked that "none of my pieces were there!", I didn't really mind because I earnestly think the entire Seiken series, not only the games from it in which I worked, are deeply related to my musical career.
Well then, thank you very much for having paid attention to my rather long trip down the memory lane. To all of the Seiken Densetsu fans out there, and all of the creative staff of the series, and especially to you: thank you from the bottom of my heart, I truly love you all. And a second helping of love wouldn't hurt either.
Takayuki Aihara - Composer (Children of Mana)
When I told everyone that my dream was to work as a game sound creator, I was told that I should aim to write songs for "the easy road, the RPGs". Actually, games like Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest were released during my time as a senior high school student, and since I had aspired ever since to be a sound designer, my greatest wish was to work on such games.
However, as I started working as a developer of arcade video games [Editor's Note: Namco], I didn't really have any chances to work in a consumer-focused genre such as RPGs. Everytime we got a new hardware, the expressive musical power we had on our hands experienced a remarkable improvement, and several RPGs were created using these new technologies. While I did enjoy them as yet other game fan, I'd say that my expectations at work were destroyed, sliced, and annihilated; and thus I had to continue running into more boring vectors.
After 15 long years being worked to death, my friend Kenji Ito-san who was born in the same year as myself, Showa 43 [Editor's Note: 1968] called me on the telephone one day. While he intended to sound calm on the telephone, he told me that the day in which I could work on the Seiken Densetsu series, which had always been one of my goals, had finally come! Honestly, I remember that the inside of my brain was as vibrant as samba carnival that day. Of course I had played the original Final Fantasy Gaiden at the time it was released, and back then, I was passionately playing it with two or three of my children, which were in the kindergarten back then. So when I had that conversation with Ito-san over the telephone, I felt this was the materialization of all my efforts.
Time has passed quite fast, and now my children are about to attend their coming-of-age ceremonies, so now I think back on it, I've been working as a soundtrack designer for 20 years. Most likely, this is the feeling of having reached such a milestone, and I hope it continues going on for many more years. To all the ever-changing and notable members of the development staff, to all the fans that have continued supporting us with their tremendous love, I truly want to give my congratulations on the occasion of the Seiken Densetsu 20th Anniversary.
Masaharu Iwata - Composer (Children of Mana)
Hello everyone. I'm Iwata. I'm very glad that, for this great musical compilation of the Seiken Densetsu series, they even went and recorded the music from Children of Mana. While the game's score has been digitally distributed through the Internet already, I personally think that being able to actually listen to the music in CD form, and moreover, having the entire box commemorating the 20th Anniversary of the series, should be a very moving experience to everyone out there.
I began composing for Children of Mana after I received an e-mail from Ito Kenji-san back in December 7th, 2004. While he didn't specify what kind of work I was getting myself into, I replied "Please, give me your contact address". While we were acquaintances, I had hardly ever talked to him, so I remember being very nervous about it. We immediately began talking through the phone, and then, he suddenly told me "I would like you to join me in creating music for the Seiken Densetsu series".
I had never even dreamt that I'd be partaking in the creation of such a large-scale title. Among other experiences, I had bought and played through Seiken Densetsu 2 and loved its music greatly, so being part of the staff working on a title of that same series felt wonderful to me. After that, I began working under Kenji Ito-san's supervision, who checked up the demos I made, gave me instructions, and even occasionally gave me advice, until we finally completed the score. Since the original goal for the game was attracting more players, the normally calm and gentle Ito-san was more quick to point faults than ever, so that was quite a problematic job. (*laughs*)
The internal soundfonts used by the DS were still unknown to me, so I was quite worried about how far I could push it. However, I think it wouldn't have ending up sounding so good if it weren't for the efforts of the sound engineers, who did a wonderful job. There were many more hardships, but thanks to everyone, beginning with Kenji Ito-san, I had one of the most interesting experiences in my career. If you can love these songs after playing the CD for the first time, that would be the greatest honor to me.
Tsuyoshi Sekito - Composer / Arranger (Dawn of Mana)
Congratulations to the Seiken Densetsu series for its 20th Anniversary! I'm very grateful for having been able to participate in this project. Well then, while I was initially planned to be in charge of part of the arrangements, in the middle of the development I was tasked with also composing part of the music...
While I had to make the music for several of the movie scenes present in the game, they featured beautiful environments where several dramatic twists took place. What kind of music should I make for them? I remember that was something that greatly worried me. To further understand the changes in the emotions of the characters that appeared in it so the music could further match them, I took a copy of the script the voice actors would use at the time of the recordings and gave it a thorough reading.
Even now, I think that the piece that left the largest impression on me upon listening to it is "Pack of Ice Wolves II" from Disc 09. The event movie during which it plays is basically a large-scale battle in which all the characters are alternating between attacking and defending very quickly, so there's also a great number of sound effects. Furthermore, it has a length of four minutes, so it has a lot of strength, while being also very speedy to go accord to the story events during which it plays, so it was quite a lot of trouble to make. Upon listening to the stories of the movie composers I respect so much, I got the hunch that "under this situation (in which I have so many sound effects), it won't be enough if I make the music with just one or two tracks", so I had to take caution to not make the overall sound too dense as I continued on.
During the recording for the orchestra, there was this little secret episode in which Ito-san continued directing the orchestra until the end of the day despite being terribly sick, and he collapsed on the sofa right after we had finished. I also remember there was a time in which Soken-kun wasn't being really attentive to the work he did, so I had to hurry up back to work and pretty much ended up giving up my summer holidays, or something like that. (*laughs*) He truly became a nice guy in which anyone can rely on! However, making up a 20-disc set!? Anyone would need around three years to fully listen to it! I'm joking, though. I'll be very glad if you can enjoy it alongside the vivid memories of having played the game.
Masayoshi Soken - Composer / Arranger (Dawn of Mana)
I'm Soken. Normally, my main work consists of working on sound effects, voice recording, and general sound engineering. Good day to everyone out there. When I was told to write these liner notes, I went to review the files in which I worked so long ago, and here are the results of that: The first song in which I worked was "Don't Hunt the Fairy -SK4 Ver.-", whose initial creation date was on June 23th, 2006 at 11:40 pm. The last song I completed was "Irwin on Reflection -Hurry Up Ver.-", whose final revision was on August 14th, 2006 at 1:36 pm. This was pretty much the condensation of the up-front battle I had with Seiken Densetsu 4 over 52 long days.
The day in which that angel-faced demon first appeared before me was most likely at the end of May 2006. "Ahhh, Soken-kun! Are you too busy with work right now?", Sekito-san said with a deceiving laugh. I'm pretty sure it was pretty obvious I was, but if there was a opening anywhere, he'd instantly use it. In that way, I ended up getting roped into working on Seiken Densetsu as well. Initially, it was planned that I'd make 20 songs and an alpha. I was told to "Please, compose them within a month!", which at the time was an order every bit as unreasonable as "Eat 100 plates of beef covered in rice and vegetables in 10 seconds!"
The work I did during that time really felt like a battle. During the subsequent days and nights, I had to continue make, make, make, and make songs one after other from dawn to dusk to the point where I felt like vomiting blood into cans. On the other hand, the ones giving the orders (Oowata-san, who is yet other angel-faced demon) kept telling me "if you can do that, do it!", and I constantly heard a voice in my head saying "Put even more into it! Go for it!"; so before I knew, the number of recorded tracks I had made swelled up to a total of 32, so I put them all into a CD and turned it in at the expected delivery date. But disappointingly, I lost a lot of weight due to this.
If I'm to put this in terms everyone who likes professional wrestling should know, it'd be "use your abilities to the fullest". That was a maxim I followed from the very start of this work. If I had to summarise everything related to these developments, most likely I'd come out as an extreme masochist. I'm the type to say that these are unreasonable demands, yet on the contrary I'm the one who gets flared up the most to work on them...
Agh, what kind of ridiculous nonsense am I spouting out now? But.. there's a pretty simple reason for that. It's because when I'm ordered to make music for a game, the developers must have all sorts of thoughts about the game itself. "I have pondered quite a bit about this part. I want a song that only plays during this". That way, I can come up with something while I'm looking at the monitor during work, resting up at home, or sleeping and having absurd dreams. If even one part of these thoughts even the "Do this like this", was missing I wouldn't be able to decide how to work. While I commented on all of this during a friendly chat for the Seiken Densetsu 4 Disassembled True Style book [Editor's Note: The Seiken Densetsu 4 official guide], at the time I worked on the project I didn't smile or laugh at all. It was extremely painful and hard. However, even in these incredibly hard times, I managed to have some a lot fun in a way or other.
When I learned about the release of this soundtrack box, which would package so many CDs for all the franchise's titles, I even thought, "It must be a joke! How can everyone love this series to that point!?". Yet I was truly very proud of having played a part on it.
Finally, and while this isn't really related to anything in particular, whenever I called out a certain Kenji Ito-san like this "ItoKen-saan", he would poke out his head, turn around back and forth, and ask "Whaaat?". He looked like a owl whenever he did that.
Koichi Ishii - Designer / Director / Producer (Mana Series)
Long time no see! I'm Ishii. First, congratulations to the Seiken Densetsu series on its 20th Anniversary. I'd like to give my heartfelt thanks to Square Enix for having given us this opportunity. As for me, while I really wanted to say my congratulations to the "Seiken Densetsu series for its 20th Anniversary" in some way, since I've left Square Enix and work independently now, you all might have thought I wouldn't be involved with it anymore. Therefore, I was extremely glad when I was asked to write these liner notes and it's been extremely moving for me.
At this time, I've stopped working in the development of the respected game series that I used to work quite a lot, such as Final Fantasy and Seiken Densetsu. Despite this, the Seiken Densetsu 20th Anniversary has become such an important juncture to me that, for some reason, I couldn't stop feeling this was going to be a wonderful recording.
Seiken Densetsu was a title in which I worked especially hard, and into which I poured all of my love. After Final Fantasy had developed its own style as a game series, alongside the SaGa series, there was a "challenging" title that created a new type of gameplay, yet retained the usual Square-ism found in these other games. That's what Seiken Densetsu was to me. So many related staff members went on to make further games for the series and that so many players loved Seiken Densetsu so much... nothing else makes me happier than this.
Thus, I want to express my gratitude to everyone out there who loves Seiken Densetsu, and the same time, express my sadness for the fact that I wasn't able to give you all the "new Seiken Densetsu" you're all expecting.
However, there is a single present I can give you all: The airy "Seiken timbre" contained in the songs that adorns the 20th Anniversary for the series. Gentle, harsh, delicate, and grand, these numerous melodies will vividly call out to the greenness, wind, and character interactions of the Seiken Densetsu world in which you ventured so long ago. If you all can tie your hearts together like this and look at the Tree of Mana alongside me, I'll be extremely happy.
While the Rabites used to always be at my side long ago, they aren't with me anymore. If the time ever comes for me to encounter them again, I think I'll embrace them tightly, so I can be able to express my love and make up for all the time we were apart.
"Really... my deepest thanks to everyone who continued loving Seiken Densetsu for so much time".
Hiromichi Tanaka - Producer / Director (Secret of Mana, Seiken Densetsu 3)
Over 25 years ago, the original Seiken Densetsu project we had planned was a 3-D dungeon-type RPG that was projected to be released in the Famicom Disk System. That was before the first Dragon Quest had been released, so if we had managed to complete that game as we had planned, most likely it'd have become the first title to become a commercial RPG. Unfortunately, this project was canceled and thus it never saw a release.
Therefore, we began working on the second Seiken Densetsu project, which was supposed to be a grand episodic RPG divided in three chapters, under the lead of the director Mr. Kazuhiko Aoki. The game was supposed to be developed for the Famicom Disk System as well, but between the arrival of ROM media of a much larger capacity and the fact that the Disk System itself was not being supported anymore, we were forced to terminate its development. At this time we only had the trademark Seiken Densetsu registered, but after all, both of the titles that were going to bear it were canceled before any progress had been made into them.
Then, many days and months later, the Game Boy was released. This time, following the release of Makai Toushi SaGa (Final Fantasy Legend), we managed to make Seiken Densetsu as a Final Fantasy Gaiden. It was an ARPG due to its action elements, but the other reason for us giving it that name was because I felt it was time to finally give some use to that trademark we had lying around.
Soon enough, it became the time in which the Super Famicom was completed and released. During that time, we were still seeking a higher capacity media for our games, and upon getting word from Nintendo that they were developing a CD-ROM adapter for the Super Famicom, we decided to start a project in a different direction from Final Fantasy IV, which at the time was in the middle of development and was touted as a next-generation RPG fitting the large storage capacity the new cartridges had. The development codename for the new project was Maru Island, and we were making it as a collaboration work with Akira Toriyama-sensei after we established contact through Shueisha. I frequently ran back to the office just to receive and look at the screen mock-ups that Toriyama-sensei did in the initial stages of the project.
Despite that, the CD-ROM adapter was never completed. Once everyone learned that the CD-ROM adapter was never going to see a release, they decided to abandon everything that had been planned for development since the very start, including Toriyama-sensei's contributions, and decided to revise the project in order to make it release into a ROM cassette. We said that we would wait for the CD-ROM to make a collaboration project with Toriyama-sensei, but when it was revised, it actually became an entirely different project with an entirely different direction. That was what later on was completed into the game we know as Chrono Trigger.
Thanks to the high speed of the ROM, it was possible to seamlessly make the action visible in the field without the need to make a transition into a battle screen. But in the end, the new RPG I wanted to start making one that didn't have a command-style battle system (Motion Battle System) and tested the reflexes of the players wasn't a title that existed at the moment.
Upon seeing that my goal was to make an action RPG, and learning that an ARPG was the next game we were going to make, I decided to make it into a sequel for Seiken Densetsu, so we reestructured everything to use the world setting we had already from the previous game, and Seiken Densetsu 2 was finally completed. Seiken Densetsu 3 was created as part of the Seiken Densetsu series from its very inception. Thus, this was pretty much the complicated history of the Seiken Densetsu titles.
Back then, I would have never imagined that so many people would have continued loving the Seiken Densetsu series and its games so much that it would continue for over 20 years like this. My greatest thanks to everyone who played through them during this long stretch of time. Really, thanks to all of you.
Akitoshi Kawazu - Producer (Legend of Mana)
We will now unveil just one truth: that what we have here used to be an entirely different game. Therefore, when Ishii-kun came up with the Seiken Densetsu name and told me that he had a story for a game based on this name, I thought it'd be a good idea to at least listen to what he had to say.
Somehow, what happened later on ended being pretty hard to understand as a group of Japanese sentences. In short, the Seiken Densetsu project was canceled, and many years later, Ishii-kun made an entirely different game with the Seiken Densetsu title. As for the title, not even Sakaguchi-san knew what relation it had to the game's plot. However, once we saw the product itself, we saw how appropriate it was for both the story and the game to have the Seiken Densetsu title, and that was how we came to complete it.
The first game was given the title Final Fantasy Gaiden because of business decisions taken by the company's higher-ups, and I remember that even Ishii-kun was opposed to that move. Well, it was only natural. That game was Seiken Densetsu, so it didn't have anything to do with a side-story for the Final Fantasy games. In that same vein, the first game was also Yoshinori Kitase's debut game, and actually, we couldn't have completed it successfully if he weren't around. As this was Ishii-kun's first work as a director, this allowed him to unfold the dreams in which he wanted to include many elements into the game. Although I continually kept an eye on the project, it was still the cause of a lot of trouble. The only reason why we could realistically carry out the project to the end was because of Kitase's great contributions. As you might have imagined, he began working on the next titles for the Final Fantasy series after all this.
Also, the first game in the series was for the monochrome Game Boy, and the person in charge of its pixel artwork was Kazuko Shibuya. Ever since the first Final Fantasy, Shibuya-san and Ishii-kun were in charge of the character design and its consequent portrayal in the games, and they were a combination like no other. Although I call them a combination, they had very frequent quarrels among themselves. This was mainly because Ishii-kun frequently revised Shibuya-san's pixel art without consulting with her first. However, as they continued working from Final Fantasy III to Seiken Densetsu, and to Final Fantasy IV afterwards, Shibuya-san gradually improved her pixel art ability. Eventually, she became able to draw pixel arts of such a high level in a consistent way that we wondered if the players wouldn't be able to connect with them. The game that was graced with such beautiful art ended being Romancing SaGa.
I personally think that Kenji Ito, or Itoken, also helped to reinforce the image of the SaGa series quite greatly, but Seiken Densetsu was the first game he scored entirely on his own. Therefore, it's no wonder that he has much stronger feelings for Seiken Densetsu than for the SaGa series. Later on, he was succeeded by the composers Kikuta-kun and Shimomura-san when the subsequent Seiken Densetsu games were released, which was quite weird for Square games in that each game had different composers. I feel that this is what helped us to give the game series its own unique color, but of course, this also was something that caused great troubles to the composers themselves.
Seiken Densetsu 2 and Seiken Densetsu 3 were made by the combination of Tanaka-san and Ishii-kun, and continued Seiken Densetsu on the Super Famicom. After that, we underwent a large change and began developing games for the PlayStation, which also greatly changed the composition of our team. Because of the gathering of members for the team that would in the creation of our largest project thus far, Final Fantasy VII, the team that worked on Ishii-kun's Seiken Densetsu series and the team that worked in my own SaGa series were fused into one. The game that was born from such an union was SaGa Frontier. Most likely, the name was influenced by the Frontier Menthol cigars that Ishii-kun frequently smoked back then.
After that, the SaGa Frontier team was split up back into its components, so my team could focus in working into SaGa Frontier 2, while Ishii-kun's team worked in the creation of Legend of Mana. That time, I had the position of producer and mainly was tasked with keeping the budget and schedules in check, but I made a mistake. Since Ishii-kun was so troubled with the content he wanted to put in the game, I decided to be more loose with the schedule and budget for it, and from that moment on, I didn't keep so much of an eye on it as I used to.
Practically speaking, this might have been the best way to do it, but at the very end, when it was pretty much time to force him to cancel the project, I decided to retighten my watch on it so it would keep with the schedule we had originally planned. In the end, we were able to work the project back into the timeframe we expected, with delays included, and considered that we should complete it into one or two more months at most. Because of that, I had a great battle against the rest of the company, which revealed to me that being a producer was my true vocation. Of course, changing the release date for a game by one or two months is actually a very dramatic change and a decision that isn't easy for any game maker, but at the least I managed to make an announcement about it to the players, as I felt I should.
After this, Square decided to jump into the great enterprise of making online games, and thus Ishii-kun and Tanaka-san had to begin working in Final Fantasy XI, meaning that Seiken Densetsu would be taking a brief rest. After Final Fantasy XI, Ishii-kun didn't talk much to me about making games again for the Seiken Densetsu series, so I guess this is the point were the conversation about stories from the past ends.
I still have a very important memory about the development of the first Seiken Densetsu game. Once the development of SaGa 2 had ended, I had planned to make something for the Super Famicom next. Ishii-kun and I constantly talked about wanting to make a pure fantasy RPG different from Final Fantasy, so we always wondered when Seiken Densetsu would be finished after we began working in it, and always waited for that moment to come.
However, the development never ended. Inevitably, the creation of Seiken Densetsu directly led into the beginning of my personal project Romancing SaGa. If the development of Seiken Densetsu didn't go in the right direction, most likely Romancing SaGa would have never existed, and other fantasy RPGs would have been made in its place. At the time that first game was made, Square had already released Final Fantasy III and we had moved our offices from the old building in Okachimachi to a new one located in the seventh district of Akasaka, so that was a time in which a lot of new people came in.
Currently, the company has changed into Square Enix, and it has its headquarters located in a tall building near the Shinjuku station, with a crowd of over a thousand people as staff members. Of the staff members from back then, some of them continued working here while others went their own separate ways.
However, the fact that a group of young men were brought together by the invisible chains of fate to create a game, and said game is still being loved by thousands of players around the world after twenty years... that a creation of non-divine beings as us humans managed to accomplish this, is something that truly fills me with happiness. If twenty years later I get again the chance to write more lines like these, I won't turn down the request to do so.