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Sentinel Report #5: The Appeal of BABYLON’S FALL’S Music (1/2)

Events Sentinel Report #5: The Appeal of BABYLON’S FALL’S Music (1/2)

02/25/2022 03:30

BABYLON’S FALL lead composer Yamaguchi Hiroshi here.
In today’s article I would like to introduce you to the music from the game!

Musical Concept

Put simply, the concept behind the music for BABYLON’S FALL is “Medieval Sound”.

This style centres on music from medieval Europe and features instruments used in that period but is not limited by it and we have tried to be as free and imaginative as possible in creating the music for the game.

If you were wondering what parts of the music are medieval, then one good example is the track played on the character creation/ character select screen after exiting the title screen. This piece was played by a brass quartet using ancient instruments called the Zink and the Sackbut.

Zink played by Yoshimichi Hamada
Tenor sackbuts played by (left to right) Nobuko Miyashita and Kohei Minami
Bass sackbut played by Yuka Mitani

The bard Leto, who sits at the seafront in the port of Kumar where the Sentinels gather, plays a very old instrument called a lute.

Lute played by Toru Sakurada

While exploring and fighting during the very first quest in the Civic Cloister, you can hear the tones of the Viola d’amore and the Viola da gamba, forerunners to the modern violin and cello.

string instruments used around 16th to 18th century western Europe.

[Updated: April 14, 2022]
There was a mistake in the information that was initially published. We apologize for this and have corrected the description accordingly.

Viola d’amore played by Akira Harada
Viola da gamba played by Takako Tanaka

Viola da gamba played by Sofia Radilova

These are three examples of the instruments used in the game.
Strictly speaking, some of the instruments used date from a time slightly after the medieval period, but we settled on the easily understood term “medieval” to cement the overall musical concept in the development team.

We started in this direction when we were inspired to research ancient European instruments by the oil painting style of the graphics,

The sound that these pre-modern instruments produce is quite unique and has its own appeal, but they obviously lack in versatility when compared to more modern instruments, having limited reverberation and fewer playing techniques available. We felt that this was a perfect metaphor for the Sentinel force, who have literally had their freedom taken away.

You can also hear some traditional ethnic instruments too, such as the Gaida and the Gadulka. See if you can search out the sections where they are played in the game.

Gaida played by Petyo Petrov

Gadulka played by Borislav Gulabov

The music that Shuwamina the ex. Sentinel plays at the Dancing dolphin is based on Gypsy Jazz, which is not “medieval” at all.
I was originally torn whether to give the music here a more Celtic style or not, but ultimately, I chose the style I did because wanted to create a feeling of pathos and melancholy to capture how the Dolphin is a refuge for the soul, with the prospect of fine drink and a good meal offering the weary sentinels a fleeting moment of respite from their worries and tribulations as they risk life and limb under foreign skies.

Violin: Stoimen Peev
Accordion: Georgi Velichkov
Guitars: Kiril Georgiev and Boyan Hristov
Bass: Boris Taslev

The game also contains numerous other variations on this theme, such as pieces where the melody is played with medieval instruments, but the tune is not or tracks that combine medieval sounds together with synthesized ones. Everything was based around the core concept of “Medieval sound”, but we aimed to use many different types of music that fit with the setting and feel of the game to create a unique and innovative world.

Boss Battle Music

The music used in the boss battles was an area that we put particularly great effort into. For these pieces we aimed for a solemn and majestic sound that suggests the symphonies of baroque and classical music from after the medieval and renaissance eras. To achieve such an epic sound, we carried out large scale recordings with a full orchestra and chorus in Bulgaria.

These are the parts of the game where the excitement and drama in the music builds the most, and I feel we have managed to create some fine pieces that capture the personality and background of each of the gigantic boss monsters, so I would be delighted if players listen out for those while playing.

The crew from the Sofia Session Orchestra & Choir

Soundtrack

Finally, I would like to introduce the BABYLON’S FALL soundtrack. This de-luxe five-disc package contains a total of 86 music tracks from the game!

Square Enix Store

There are even more great things coming from the ever-expanding world of BABYLON’S FALL, so watch out for future updates!