My experience with the original Etrian Odyssey is a unique one, mainly because I experienced it only through its catchy, oldschool soundtrack composed by Yuzo Koshiro. The name "Etrian Odyssey" itself is somewhat foreign to me, as the soundtrack was released under the Japanese title for the game, "Sekaiju no MeiQ," which I always thought was a bizarre title for a Japanese game.
The soundtrack unfortunately didn't make its way stateside, as is the case for most game scores coming out of Japan. I remember enjoying the soundtrack, but one piece in particular, titled "Scene - Blue and White," stuck in my memory. It is a contemplative and somewhat melancholy tune with a descending piano melody that really struck a chord (pun intended) with me.
When I learned that an arrangement album was in the works titled "Sekaiju no MeiQ Super Arrange Version" (Super Arrange is oddly a common subtitle for Japanese arrangement albums), I remember frantically pulling up the tracklist online to see if "Blue and White" was featured on the album. Indeed it was, much to my excitement. The arrangement sported a beautiful piano and lots of reverb, giving an even more warm and enveloping atmosphere.
There was one instance when I had the arrangement of "Blue and White" on repeat for over two hours late one evening while I was studying for a important exam that was scheduled for the following day. I don't need to explain that exams and the required studying for exams can be a stressful experience, but Koshiro's music put me in a surreal state of calm and focus, which I associate this song to this day.
So while I didn't play the original Etrian Odyssey, the title recalls this specific memory to the forefront of my mind. I am actually very excited about the release of Etrian Odyssey II, and it's strange to think that if I hadn't listened to the score for the original Etrtian Odyssey, I probably wouldn't have cared about the sequel at all. I think this simply goes to show how important of a tool music is in the promotion of games. I am looking forward to both the game and the score for Etrian Odyssey II due out next month.