With the favorable outcome of Masashi Hamauzu's foray into symphonic arrangements with the Chocobo Dungeon arranged album, the composer was assigned his first RPG project in 1999, working together with producer Akitoshi Kawazu on the next Playstation intallment of the SaGa franchise. For the soundtrack, Hamauzu paired up with the skilled synthesizer programmer, Ryo Yamazaki, who had managed to capture the feel of acoustic instruments for Mitsuda's Chrono Cross score. The project would mark the beginning of a long and harmonious collaboration between the two musicians. The composer said of SaGa Frontier 2 that his approach to the game soundtrack was a departure from standard RPG scores. But when the experiment turned out both to express his artistic ideas and also worked well for the game, the methodology became the basis for his style. Hamauzu supplemented the original album with an arranged soundtrack centered upon piano arrangements. Called Rhapsody on a Theme of SaGa Frontier 2, the live music accentuates the great success accomplished by Hamauzu and Yamazaki on their first collaboration in synthesizing a rich orchestral sound using digital instruments.
"The idea that game music should sound a certain way is a common sentiment," Hamauzu writes in the liner notes for SaGa Frontier 2. "But I felt that conforming to the atmosphere of the previous games in the SaGa series was not entirely necessary. I asked myself why was I chosen to write music for the new SaGa if only to defer stylistic judgment to the preconceived expectations of SaGa's history. I felt it would be a mistake to fabricate a copy that any other composer could do just as well. It was important to me that I work on discovering my own voice. Only in the final two months of production did I realize that attempting to express my own unique character to the utmost was the best medicine for dissolving concern over how suitable my music was to the task of continuing the tradition of this series. I extend a heartfelt thanks to the SaGa staff for dealing with these self-absorbed struggles of mine. And also to the synth manipulator, Yamazaki-kun. In addition to the brilliance of his work, it was the appreciation he showed for my harmonic style that was my greatest source of happiness."