One of the most critical — and certainly controversial — figures in the history of video game music is no longer with us. Koichi Sugiyama passed away on September 30th. He was 90. His death, which was not publicly announced until earlier today, was due to a fatal instance of septic shock. Sugiyama was a popular music artist in the Japanese film and television circuit as far back as the 1960s, but his gaming-related breakout was inarguably 1986's Dragon Quest. He would go on to compose the soundtracks for not only every mainline sequel but a multitude of spin-offs as well. It is unknown at this time whether or not Sugiyama finished any pieces for the upcoming Dragon Quest XII, but at minimum, it's a near-certainty his legendary motifs will be implemented by any prospective replacement musicians. In gaming's earliest years, even RPG scores were little more than catchy beeps and blips. Koichi Sugiyama was a pioneer in his field, imbuing Dragon Quest with robust, emotional tracks that became instantly synonymous with Japan's most beloved role-playing franchise. Sugiyama's work earned the composer multiple high-end awards, and his monumental legacy has been repeatedly recognized by the Japanese government. That legacy is not without significant controversy.