Final Fantasy XIV composer Masayoshi Soken revealed that he had been battling with cancer since last year.
In a sobering close to the Final Fantasy XIV Digital Fan Festival, where he had also performed with his band The Primals, Soken opened up that he was diagnosed in March 2020.
“Until about October last year, I spent approximately six to seven months in a hospital room,” he said, via his translator and fellow Primals bandmate Michael Christopher Koji-Fox.
“So thinking about how to use that time, I didn’t want to just sit there and do nothing, and neither did Yoshida-san and neither did our CEO. And so they worked it out that we could have a special arrangement while I was in the hospital.”
Soken was undergoing chemotherapy during these months, which he found “mentally as well as physically tough”, but also wrote music to conclude Final Fantasy XIV‘s Shadowbringers story, including the climactic song ‘To the Edge’.
“Seeing the reactions of all the players around the world, it helped me conquer this cancer,” Soken continued. His doctors had also given him the clear to attend the Fan Festival as the cancer is now in remission.
The news came as a shock to both the community and the development team, who Soken had kept his condition private from as he didn’t want to affect their performance.
“It was a tough decision whether to talk about this or not,” Yoshida explained. “I want to apologise to the dev team members for not being able to tell you. But Soken’s back, and he’s going to ready for our next adventure.”