01 - Opening
02 - Opening Title
03 - Prologue
04 - Field Music: Prelude to Battle
05 - Field Music: Trial of the Knights
06 - World Map
07 - Field Music: Passing the Test
08 - Town
09 - Bar
10 - Arena
11 - Field Music: Battlefield of Deep Forest
12 - Field Music: Underground Labyrinth
13 - Boss Battle
14 - Boss Battle Victory
15 - Event Music: Losing One's Bearings
16 - Event Music: Flight
17 - Event Music: The Eastern Castle
18 - Event Music: The Queen's Wish
19 - Genyuusai Battle
20 - Last Boss Battle
21 - Last Boss Battle Victory
22 - Ending
23 - Bonus Tracks
Riglord Saga is one of the Sega Saturn's earliest RPGs. Released in the US originally as "Blazing Heroes," then quickly reissued with a new name (Mystaria: The Realms of Lore), the game didn't exactly make big waves on either side of the Pacific. But there were a few memorable things about the game. For example, it was one of the first RPGs to use rendered 3D polygons akin to some of the fighting games released that year. The game also had long, complex dungeons and difficult battles.
But the one thing I remember most about the game was its excellent soundtrack.
There is reason to believe that the Saturn was more capable than the PlayStation at presenting high-quality sequenced audio. Yoshihara Urita's score for Riglord Saga proves this point well, especially if you compare it to early PlayStation soundtracks. Listening to the opening track, I can hear two things that leave an impression on me. First is the looped background audio, which sounds good enough to be PlayStation 2 audio (it reminds me of a song from the .hack// series as a matter of fact). The second thing I hear is the life-like woodwind instrument, the particular type I cannot identify (it's no mere flute; it's likely an Asian instrument related to the recorder). Talk about an ear-opening experience!
However, the majority of the soundtrack rests on these two laurels. High-quality loops repeat every five to ten seconds, and a very unique-sounding instrument is placed on top, like icing on a cake, to present either the main melody or else some form of decoration. It's a good formula, but it can only go so far. Perhaps that's why the soundtrack is so short. One disc, under 50 minutes, only 23 tracks to score an entire RPG. Compare that to, say, the Chrono Trigger OST, and we see a severe lack of quantity.
The Riglord Saga OST is a great album for Saturn fans to remember one of the earliest RPGs for the console, and it also works well in demonstrating the console's prowess. The music itself is also memorable, but there are only a few melodies (re-used throughout the soundtrack) that will remain with you, even after a dozen listens. If you're in the market for old, rare soundtracks, this might be one to pick up.
Reviewed by: Patrick Gann