Yuzo Koshiro was born in 1967, the son of a concert pianist, so he grew up surrounded with classical music. As a toddler, he began to learn piano from his mother, and he also studied violin and cello. When he was ten, he also studied composition with the famed film composer Joe Hisaishi for three years, after which he was self-taught in music. Koshiro combined his love of music and video games in high school, originally wanting to be a game programmer. But when he was nineteen, he heard of an opening at Nihon Falcom Corp. for a composer, so he sent them a tape of his music. He was hired, and composed his first game score within the year, called Xanadu Scenario II. Since then, Koshiro has composed other game scores such as The Revenge of Shinobi, Streets of Rage, Beyond Oasis (The Story of Thor), Sorcerian, ActRaiser, Ys, and Shenmue. These days, Koshiro works at Ancient, his family's small game development company, which is run by his mother and where his sister is on the design team. Koshiro has loved classical music from an early age, such as Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Bruckner, and Brahms, and he is also inspired by other genres such as old-style MIDI arcade game music, trance, rock, pop, techno, and forms of dance such as house and hip-hop. Koshiro's style varies from game to game - on Streets of Rage, he used his house, techno, and hip-hop background, while Shenmue, considered by many to be his finest, uses a full orchestral palette.