Final Fantasy XII Hitoshi Sakimoto
Image: Square Enix

Throughout the Nintendo Life Video Game Music Festival we're speaking to a range of composers and musicians for a mixture of in-depth interviews and shorter, sharper (and perhaps a little goofier) Q&As where we ask just ten rapid-fire personal questions; we're calling these shorter features 'Quick Beats'.

Today we're speaking to composer Hitoshi Sakimoto, who we previously interviewed back in April as part of the Astria Ascending team. That JRPG from Artisan Studio is scheduled for release at the end of September, but today we're asking this VGM veteran VGM — whose impressive list of credits include such classics as Vagrant Story, Final Fantasy Tactics, Final Fantasy XII, and Valkyria Chronicles, to name just a tiny handful — some more personal musical questions.

So, join us now as Hitoshi Sakimoto answers ten rapid-fire questions of a musical flavour...

What was the first song or album you remember buying?

Yellow Magic Orchestra's RYDEEN.

What was the last music you listened to?

Let me think ... as I checked my iTunes just now, Dua Lipa's Future Nostalgia was the most recently played. It’s been played often.

What was the very first video game you wrote music for, and how do you feel listening back now?

For commercial works, I think it's Bubble Ghost. (But my memory is a bit foggy)

Which piece of yours are you most proud of?

Basically, my latest job is what I’m most proud of.

Which piece by someone else do you wish you had written?

I can’t decide which one is the best, so as I checked iTunes again, I saw that I repurchased the YMO album on iTunes. The first thing that comes to my mind is the BGM version of Thousand Knives, which I still really love.

What do you listen to while you’re driving?

I actually only enjoy my favorite music if I'm driving. So in the car, I just play all the albums I bought.

Do you have a musical hero?

I can't pick just one person, so as I always said, I really respect the YMO fellows.

Which decade had the best music?

Sorry, but my favorite is the '80s.

Ocarina, harp or bongos — which magical instrument do you take on an epic adventure?

I think percussion would be the most functional. If it’s just for fun though, I would like to play the Wind Controller.

If your house were on fire and you only had time to grab one keepsake before you flee to safety with your family, what would you take?

If I think about this I will take too long and die, so I’d rather focus on keeping everyone safe.

Be sure to check out our other Quick Beats interviews with the likes of Austin Wintory, Yuzo Koshiro, Darren Korb, Jake Kaufman, Lena Raine, and Manami Matsumae, and keep an eye out for plenty more in the coming days as the Nintendo Life VGM Fest continues.