There have been other “Best” DQ Symphonic albums in the past, such as the Roto and Tenku albums. This two-part collection contains music for Dragon Quest I through VII, and is from the London Philharmonic recordings.
Other than the Overture (which they pulled from DQVII), we find the track ordering by title number. We literally get the “best,” or perhaps best-recognized, tracks from each of the 7 Dragon Quest titles released up to this point (note the 2001 release, long before Dragon Quest VIII).
In this collection, Dragon Quest I, II, III, and IV get the shaft: only two songs per game title. In turn, strong emphasis gets put on V, VI, and especially VII (as the game was newly released at the time).
However, even though this album is sparse on the older titles, they picked some excellent songs from each. “Sea Breeze” from Dragon Quest IV is excellent, as are both tracks pulled from DQIII. I was definitely pleased with the track selection in this regard, though I would generally want more from II, III, and IV than from VII.
And let’s not forget that Dragon Quest VI has some excellent songs, including a personal favorite: “Flying Bed,” which features xylophone as a solo instrument in the arrangement.
If you’re really not interested in collecting each of the Dragon Quest Symphonic Suites, and you’d rather prefer a light selection from each game (excluding DQVIII), then this would be a good album. Personally, I find little use to it since I’m much happier with my complete collection of Dragon Quest Symphonic Suites. And if you like Koichi Sugiyama’s music even just “on occasion,” you’d probably be better off avoiding these “best of” albums and picking up each of the individual albums (then the only remaining question is, “which recording?”).