All good things come in time, and this project was no different. It took years to listen to every quality Tales song ever composed, from Phantasia all the way to Berseria, at least 100 times. But today that journey ends, the destination met. Now I can say I'm a true aficionado of Tales music.
Tales and Final Fantasy are eternal rivals not only in the quality of their gameplay, but also their music. I've been listening to FF themes since I was a child, but I had completely neglected Tales until this project began. Now I'm in the humorous position of having listened to Tales music more thoroughly than FF, which needs to be redressed next. With Tales done, my next target is the FF XV soundtrack. Once I've listened to the good songs from this game 100 times, I'll be up to date on both Tales and FF.
Once I have a full catalogue of all the best Tales and FF music in their respective playlists, I can begin the grand melee. I'll play a song from my 5 star Tales list at random, then a song from my 5 star Final Fantasy list at random, and whichever song was more pleasing to my ears gains entry to my 10 star video game music playlist, which will be brought into existence via this second phase of my project.
The third phase of my video game listening project will be taking the songs from that new playlist and having them compete, one random song vs. one random song, against the music from other video game franchises -- Lunar, Ogre Battle, Xenogears, Chrono Trigger and the like. Whoever survives that competition will become my 20 star video game music playlist, video game music's final form.
Nothing could start until my Tales listening project was complete, but now things actually get more exciting and fun than ever. The Tales listening project is dead, let the video game music grand melee begin! (Just as soon as I finish listening to FFXV, of course. . .)
This, too, is a tremendously large undertaking, so I wouldn't be surprised if I were still working on it in 2018. But the prize that lies at the end of the rainbow, music that's been filtered and filtered until it represents only the best of the best, is well worth it.