Editor’s note (3/25/2013): While this album is no longer in print and not available from outlets like Play-Asia and CDJapan, collectors may want to try their luck at the VGMdb Marketplace.
Phantasy Star Collection Sound Collection II is at the same time an incredible soundtrack and a disappointment. First of all, it’s an amazing soundtrack because it features arranged songs from a game that already had great music and some of the songs on the CD are absolutely amazing. However, the disappointment comes from the fact that some songs have very bad arrangements that completely destroy the original feel of the songs. For example, the music style is completely changed in some songs. Two of my favorite songs from Phantasy Star IV (Behind the Circuit and Organic Beat) were changed from being somewhat “Techno” on the Genesis to being “I don’t know what” in this arranged soundtrack. I can’t really say what style the music is in because I’m not familiar with musical style but all I know is that it sounds nothing like the Genesis songs and will even take some time for people to recognize which song it is. It doesn’t help that they changed the tempo also and the songs are slower than what they were originally which sounds a bit weird.
However, this doesn’t mean that the songs are crappy. It’s actually not that bad but it’s just not at all what I expected and I feel that a Techno version would have been a lot better and would have kept the original feel better. Also, after listening to the first Phantasy Star Collection Sound Collection CD, I was expecting something similar in style. Basically, something that remained faithful to the original songs while improving the quality A LOT and adding some parts to the songs (like electric guitar solo). To me, PSC1 was more powerful than PSC2 and this is why I’m a bit disappointment by this soundtrack but it is ONLY because I’m such a fan of the original music and most people won’t really mind it.
There are some amazing songs in this CD though and it makes the CD worthwhile because of that. For example, the 4th song “Her Last Breath” is absolutely beautiful with an acoustic guitar arrangement. Song No.6 “Village Medley” is also a great one that includes all the village music into one song and they keep the same feel as the original songs which is good for me. There are a few other highlights in the soundtrack and overall it is a great CD that I would definetely recommend to anybody (especially Phantasy Star fans) but I personally think it is not as good as the first Phantasy Star Collection Sound Collection CD (also reviewed on this site by yours truly). Unfortunately, finding this CD anywhere is an impossible task as it was released only in very short quantity years ago in Japan and as such, it is now impossible to find and most people don’t even know that this soundtrack even existed.
Note: Because of this soundtrack’s complete unavailability, RPGFan has decided to sample every track in its entirety.