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Satoshi Tajiri at the Game Developer Conference.

Satoshi Tajiri (田尻 智, Tajiri Satoshi) is a Japanese video game designer, most commonly known as the creator of the ever so popular Pokémon series, alongside Ken Sugimori. Tajiri was born on August 28, 1965, in Machida, Tokyo, Japan. The creation of Pokémon has brought him to become a worldwide inspiration. He is one of the top 100 game creators of all time. Electronic Gaming Monthly (EGM) stated that Tajiri is one of the 10 most influential people who made a modern video game market and video game magazine Edge placed Tajiri on their list of the "Hot 100 Game Developers of 2008".

Early life

Satoshi Tajiri was born to a father that was a Nissan car salesman and a housewife. Tajiri enjoyed as a child in collecting insects which was his hobby that he enjoyed and that became also a major influence on the Pokémon series. Tajiri grew up in Machida, Tokyo, which at the time still maintained a rural atmosphere. He gained the nickname "Dr. Bug" by the children around his home town because of his favourite hobby to capture bugs. Tajiri initially wanted to become an entomologist which was his main profession. Later in the years, the urban areas of Japan spread and were more paved over. This resulted in that many places to hunt for bugs were lost due to that major renovation. Tajiri wanted to share his enjoyment of capturing bugs by creating Pokémon, claiming that he wanted to allow children to have the feeling of capturing and collecting different kinds of creatures he had.

Teenage years

His major reason of interest in video games was during his teen years which he was fascinated with arcade games. His parents thought that he was a delinquent for playing hours long in the arcade hall, knowing that there were many delinquents active to play different kinds of games. Tajiri enjoyed playing Taito's Space Invaders, which was his major interest in video games. His interest became that far and evolved over the years which he wanted to create his own video games. Tajiri won a contest for a video game idea that was sponsored by Sega. The impact of his love for arcade games made Tajiri frequently cut classes which he nearly didn't graduate. He refused a job his father suggested (which was at Tokyo Electric Power Company), but instead of taking that job he managed to take make-up classes to achieve his high school diploma. Tajiri went for two-years long to technical school at Tokyo National College of Technology, where he studied electronics instead of going to college.

Inspirations

Satoshi Tajiri has said that if he did not design video games he would be most likely in the anime field because Tajiri drew much of his inspiration from old Japanese shows and anime which includes Godzilla and Ultraman.

Tajiri also said that Shigeru Miyamoto[1] the creator of major video games such as Mario, Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda and many other successful video games that has been given a good name to Nintendo. Tajiri stated that he saw Miyamoto as a sort of mentor because he helped him with the first creation of the Pokémon video games and also the development style closely matches with that of Miyamoto.

Ash Ketchum, known as 'Satoshi' (サトシ ) in the original Japanese version of anime series, is inspired by Satoshi Tajiri himself. His first rival, Gary Oak, also known as 'Shigeru' (シゲル ), is based on Tajiri's mentor Shigeru Miyamoto.

References

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