Tomoya Ohtani


Tomoya Ohtani on Sonic the Hedgehog Original Sound Track:

The Sonic title that I participated in for the first time was Sonic Adventure 2 that was released in 2001. At that time, I was in charge of the BGM of the action stages of Knuckles and focusing on the rap being incorporated in the theme song, I wondered how it would be if I let the rap parts function as the BGM of an action game that contained those keywords—the musicality that the character carries, the stage atmosphere, the hunting gameplay—and furthermore, as something that narrates the tension of story, character, and others in which those keywords exist in the background. I remember that I produced it by trying to stuff various information into one composition while thinking about such things.

5 years have passed since then, “Would you like to try to arrange Sonic sound of the next-generation consoles?”, and the question came. If I could direct all sounds, I’d like to do it!, I thought. On the other hand, I honestly felt that this is a project that seems to have rough passage due to various significance! They’re new platforms and it’s a milestone of 15th anniversary of birth of Sonic. Just like the first game of the series, it’s a title that lets me feel its returning to roots. I started the production with hope and anxiety. (Just as I thought, the phase of deciding the project’s initial direction of composition had had a rough passage….)

In an action stage that increased its expressiveness after becoming huger, I produced it by making the speed sensation and the coexistence with the big scale feeling as the composition concept, holding the composition of as long as five minutes or more by the whole stage, and keeping in mind the musicality special to the stage and each variation of the stage. The ones that I produced at the very beginning were the two stages, Kingdom Valley and Crisis City, but their directions were not easily decided and for only these two compositions, they passed through the rewriting in a few takes and were finally settled in current forms.

The production of the instrumental version used in the preview clip for E3 exhibition of 2006 is the beginning of the main theme His World that Zebrahead’s Ali and Matty participated in. It is what I produced with the plan of having the accompanied singing with rap put in, but in this point of time, Zebrahead’s participation was not yet decided and I thought to the extent that the intro of strings and the catchy melody should be impressive. Zebrahead had been busy due to their tours, the recording schedule was not easily decided, and the time when we could record the vocal was at the last moment of the data deadline…. However, I was really fascinated by Ali’s showerlike rap.

The one in which its production was decided foremost in the phase of determining the whole specification of the composition was Elise’s theme My Destiny that decorates the last ending, which also serves as this game’s two big themes. For directing the drama between Elise and Sonic that becomes the story’s focus, I also decided to lay the ballad that lets us feel the epic as support, and let it carry the role that narrates the story while referencing the phrases that become the motive everywhere. While it is a game that has the selling points of high-speed actions and of the goodness of tempo, the dramatic and slightly painful story is also prepared. It might be the part where the balance adjustment that intertwines these two contradicting elements into the music is difficult.

I will introduce the staff who were in charge of the composition. Mariko Nanba, who was also together in Billy Hatcher and the Giant Egg, Space Channel 5: Part 2, etc., produced My Destiny, Dreams of an Absolution, and so on. As for the boss battles, Eggman’s theme, and so forth, it’s Hideaki Kobayashi, who’s well-known for the Phantasy Star Online series. Tai-hey added even more colors to the event scenes and I also asked the jazz arrangement of Elise’s theme and so on of him. Also, I requested Jun Senoue for the rearranged version of All Hail Shadow that was produced in Shadow the Hedgehog, which was released in 2005. Last but not least, I myself produced the main theme His World, Crisis City, and so forth.

5 years ago, as well as now, what I am thinking of does not change much. I would probably continue to create even from now on while roughly adjusting the situations—what kind of role I would let it carry, what kind of information I would stuff—in the music. Also, before that, I hope I could produce the surprise, the deep emotion, and others as much as possible. I think the consoles will go on evolving together with the era, and the day when they become past platforms would end up coming before one knows, but I want to continue doing my best even from now on so that I could reserve the unfading, famous music even if the era changed. Thank you very much for purchasing this soundtrack.