Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
As a child, Satoshi Tajiri, the creator of Pokémon, lived in a suburb of Tokyo and loved to collect insects, hunting them in ponds, fields and forests, constantly looking for new insects and coming up with new ways to attract insects like beetles. He was so attracted to insects, in fact, that his peers used to call him "Dr. Bug."
Satoshi did not like school. His father wanted him to be an electrical utility repairman, but this is not what he wanted. In the late 1970s, the fields and ponds that Satoshi loved as a child were paved over by apartments and parking lots, and his idea for Pokémon grew, as he wanted to give modern children the chance to hunt for creatures as he did. Satoshi got into games when he was at technical school, spending all his time in arcades. He was such a big fan that one local arcade gave him a Space Invaders machine to take home.
In 1982, Satoshi and his friends formed a games magazine under the name of Game Freak. One of his Game Freak friends was Ken Sugimori, who drew all of the Pokémon's images. In 1991, Satoshi discovered the Game Boy. When he first saw Link Cables, he imagined insects creeping along them, and the Pokémon idea was born. The game was given some initial funding and concept work from another game design studio, "Creatures." Satoshi named his development company "Game Freak", after the magazine, and thus it can still be seen at the start of Pokémon games.
Satoshi went to work for Nintendo and spent the next six years working on Pokémon. He made friends with Shigeru Miyamoto, the genius behind Mario, The Legend of Zelda, Pikmin, and Donkey Kong. As a tribute to Miyamoto and Tajiri, Ash Ketchum (or "Red" in the Gold, Silver and Crystal versions of the series) is named Satoshi and Gary Oak (or "Blue" in Gold, Silver and Crystal) is named Shigeru in the Japanese version of Pokémon.
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