Starfire with guest Takeshi Abo – PA87

By | August 15, 2017

Pixelated Audio - Video Game Music podcast and Retro Gaming Starfire PC-9801 Takeshi Abo

Heading back to the YM2608 for a look (and listen) at a game called Starfire for the  PC-9801. A system exclusive, 1st person action RPG, released on October 14th of 1994; developed and published by a small company called StarCraft Inc. It’s an interesting game that, even though a Japanese only title, borrows heavily from Western games like “Might and Magic.” More importantly, the music composed by Takeshi Abo, is a mixture of ambient, dance, and focuses on rhythm and pace to carry the mood. 

Join in as we discuss the music of Starfire and also chat with Takeshi Abo about his music from over 20 years ago!


Starfire (1994, Starcraft Inc.)
NEC PC-9801, YM2608 (MUSDRV Sound driver)
Composed by Takeshi Abo (homepage)
– Interview transcript available at Patreon –

Track List:

  • 0:00:00 Title Screen
  • 0:07:33 Opening
  • 0:10:28 Enemy Ship I
  • 0:17:08 Galaxy II
  • 0:20:11 Planet II
  • 0:28:42 My Ship
  • 0:41:07 Battle I
  • 0:43:02 Boss Theme
  • 0:45:49 Planet III
  • 0:53:08 Event I
  • 0:55:31 Enemy Ship II
  • 1:12:15 Galaxy I
  • 1:25:22 Unused Track
  • 1:31:47 Ending


Thanks to tails_ at our partner site for the logged data!


7 thoughts on “Starfire with guest Takeshi Abo – PA87

  1. NORM

    Good Lord…this ep was murderous! What a great soundtrack. I downloaded it immediately.

    Abo is super cool, too. Awesome, awesome stuff.

  2. Nathan Daniels

    Hey guys! Loved the episode. I hadn’t even heard of Takeshi Abo before the episode, but as soon as I finished listening, I grabbed all of his OSTs available on VGMrips. His style is very interesting; it is a lot more loop-centered than most Japanese composers. His songs often seem to be built on the foundation of a bassline instead of a melody. This tends to be more of a feature of Western composition; there were certain tracks that totally reminded me of Matt Furniss.

    I had a few technical questions. With the YM2608, you said there’s 6 channels of baked-in ADPCM samples, and one channel of compressed 8-bit samples. So can the 2608 reassign FM channels for sampling like the 2612, or is that 8-bit sample channel the only one that can be used for custom samples?

    Also, with the baked-in ADPCM, what manipulation can done to the channels other than volume and pitch changes? And to your knowledge, did anyone ever figure out how to trick the chip to reference custom samples in software using the ADPCM channels?

    Anyway, thanks for the good work! It’s amazing to hear these composers talk about their experiences, and there’s no other English language media out there who is bringing this level of information about Japanese VGM.

    1. Nathan Daniels

      On the way home today, my youngest boy reminded me of something else I meant to mention. We were listening to the Starfire OST, and he asked, “Daddy, are we listening to video game music, or Transformers music?”

      He meant Transformers: the Movie, from 1987, and he’s right; there are a few tracks that sound reminiscent of that score. We were listening to Event I and Enemy Ship I.

    2. Rascal

      “I hadn’t even heard of Takeshi Abo before”
      He is a legend :) I love his music.

  3. Bowl of Lentils

    Really awesome episode, I always love the PC-98 soundtracks you guys find. I was not aware when I downloaded the episode that Takeshi Abo was also the composer for Steins;Gate and the Infinity series (I know that his soundtrack for Ever17 in particular popular among fans of that series). I won’t call myself a huge visual novel fan but it is a genre I’m always curious about and I have played a handful of titles, Steins;Gate being one of them. You mentioned that Abo would be willing to do more episodes on his other soundtracks and it would be really cool to do one featuring his work on Steins;Gate, although I’m not sure if it is old enough to be considered retro. Anyway, great episode.


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