Talk:Koji Kondo

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Super Mario Sunshine[edit]

There are some inconsistencies both on Kondo's page and Shinobu Tanaka's page, the two credited composers of Super Mario Sunshine. According to Tanaka's page, she is the "credited" as the composer for "Polluted Packun" and "Manta". She supposedly arranged a piece called "Fake Mario" as well. However, on Kondo's page, he is credited as the composer for "Mini Boss Gatekeeper", "Mini Boss Manta", and "Shadow Mario". Based on the fact that these pieces attributed to battles against the Polluted Piranha, Phantamanta, and Shadow Mario respectively, I'm inclined to believe that these are the same pieces listed under different names on each composer's page. With this in mind, I have a few questions:

  1. So what's the story here? Who composed which?
  2. Where did these claims even come from? No official soundtrack for Sunshine has ever been released. We only definitively know the credits for a few songs that have reappeared on compilation albums over the years.
  3. With question #2 in mind, how do we know the names of all of these tracks? Is there some sort of official track list for Sunshine unavailable to the public? Where else would the names of the tracks come from? Why are they different between the two composers (i.e. "Mini Boss Manta" for Kondo, "Manta" for Tanaka)?

Nintendo101 (talk) 16:02, 12 January 2019 (EST)

I think I read somewhere Kondo only did the Delfino Plaza theme and its arrangements (Bianco Hills, Ricco Harbour, Sirena Beach and the credits theme), while Tanaka did the rest. From what I gathered at VGMdb, Kondo seems to have composed the ones I mentioned plus the SMB acapella theme, while Tanaka did "Deep Sea of Mare" (the underwater bonus area theme), "Sky & Sea" (the sky-based bonus area theme), the "event" theme, Pinna Park, Mecha-Bowser, Noki Bay, Sirena Beach, and Pianta Village. Honestly, I think we should only be listing song credits if the game credits say so or there are other sources confirming them, so ones that don't have a source should be removed. As for naming, in-game song titles or official soundtrack titles are used if available, otherwise {{conjectural}} can be used instead. Ashley pose SMM.png Mario JC 21:23, 14 January 2019 (EST)

Mario54671 (talk) 10:21, 19 August 2019 (PDT)

It's true that a Sunshine soundtrack was never released, only certain individual tracks have been released as part of other compilation albums. It's THOSE tracks where we know for sure who wrote what. It's not that Kondo "only wrote Delfino Plaza, Bianco Hills, Ricco Harbor, Gelato Beach, Staff Roll," but these are the only ones that he wrote that we know of for sure. Likewise, Deep Sea of Mare, Event, Pinna Park, Sirena Beach, Mecha-Bowser, Noki Bay, Pianta Village have all also been released as part of other compilation albums and are all credited to Shinobu Tanaka. I don't think Kondo ONLY wrote those tracks, but until an official soundtrack releases, we'll never know for sure. I've looked into this for a long time, and what I gather is a couple of things…
Under "Music" in the Sunshine credits, Kondo is credited first. This tells us he was the lead composer of the game. Doesn't necessarily mean he wrote MOST of the music (could very well mean the opposite in terms of number of tracks contributed, as is the case with Star Fox 64), but he was still the primary composer and the sound director as well. Any time you see a composer credited first (at least in a Nintendo game), this means they were the primary composer. Not only that, but in the cases where you have multiple composers working on the same game, the person credited last is the one with the smallest role. Example, in Super Mario Galaxy 2, Mahito Yokota is credited first (because he wrote the overwhelming majority of the soundtrack), then Ryu Nagamatsu, who contributed nine pieces, THEN Kondo, who contributed only five. Another example is Luigi's Mansion, where Kazumi Totaka is credited first, then Shinobu Tanaka. This is another soundtrack that wasn't "officially released," but given what I just said, we know that Totaka was primarily responsible for the game's soundtrack, contributing all the main themes we all remember, and he had some assistance from Shinobu Tanaka. A non-Mario example is Zelda: Wind Waker, where Kenta Nagata is credited first, as he was the sound director and main composer, then Hajime Wakai was second, as he had his fair share of compositions, then Toru Minegishi who had a smaller role, and the very last person credited was Kondo, who only contributed around two new original compositions to the game. It goes in the order of who's most involved or who has the most responsibility in the soundtrack.
Going back to Sunshine, the fact that Kondo is credited first, and the fact that he wrote most of the primary themes does imply he was still very much in charge of the sound direction, as stated above. I don't believe Delfino Plaza and all its variants are the only tracks he's responsible for. Usually the lead composer/sound director is also in charge of all the incidental music that plays during the cutscenes, title screen music, most of the jingles that play throughout the game, and critical points towards the end of the game, like the final boss. I think this is why, for a time, people were taking guesses and started adding all these credits to Kondo's wiki page, as people started guessing which ones he wrote. I'm not a fan of this, of course, as I don't like this being done without some kind of definitive evidence. However, I'm not exactly a fan of "only including the ones we know for sure" either, as this gives people the wrong idea, thinking he only contributed a handful of tracks to Sunshine when he I know he didn't.
Having read other interviews where Sunshine is briefly discussed, Kondo does talk about Sunshine like it's still very much "his" game, as opposed to other games like Galaxy where he usually hands things over to Yokota. I think we can safely assume that, until Super Mario Maker, Sunshine was Kondo's last game where he served as main composer and sound director.
"I'm not exactly a fan of "only including the ones we know for sure" either, as this gives people the wrong idea, thinking he only contributed a handful of tracks to Sunshine when he I know he didn't." The obvious solution to here is to add a disclaimer on both this and Shinobu Tanaka's page among the lines of "As the entire Super Mario Sunshine soundtrack has yet to be released in an official capacity, the following only list tracks [guy] has been attributed in official soundtrack releases and may not include all tracks the person composed for the game." (would apply to any other title that had incomplete OSTs). --Glowsquid (talk) 18:38, August 19, 2019 (EDT)