Pokemon adventures are coming for the Wii!! Mr.Seth McMahill, the assistant manager of product marketing for the Pokémon Series for over 10 year took time to interview with Amazing Kids Online magazine about the new PokePark 2.
AK: What are some of the new features in PokePark 2?
SM: PokéPark 2: Wonders Beyond offers fun with new skill games, attractions and battles to explore on your quest with the beloved Pokémon characters. Now you can play as Pikachu, Oshawott, Snivy, or Tepig, and each character has unique abilities. There is also now a second world to discover and explore in addition to PokéPark!
AK: Do you have a favorite Pokémon character in PokePark 2?
SM: With the choice of playing with Pikachu and his three Pals, that’s a hard question to answer! But, after playing the game for as long as I have and going on such an amazing adventure, I’d have to say it’s Oshawott! He can swim and get you to so many places you normally can’t go, plus he rocks in battle as well! Plus, he’s got such a great personality!
AK: Pokémon has been around for 15 years! What has been the key to the overall long-term success of the video games?
SM: The success of the video games depends on the player. Some people like all the fun characters, others like collecting, some like exploring and others like battles. There’s something for everyone in Pokémon video games.
AK: I know that you are the assistant manager of product marketing but how did you first become a game tester?
SM: I grew up playing games on my Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) like many kids my age. Some of my best childhood memories were spending hours on end in front of my TV being transported to many amazing worlds. As I grew older, I never stopped playing. One day I was in Seattle, and I noticed a toy that was like nothing I had even seen before. It was in a Japanese box, but I knew then I had found something special. I took it over to my friend’s house and he explained it was a Pokémon called Squirtle from a video game that was about to come out. A few weeks later Pokémon Red Version and Pokémon Blue Version launched in the US! I bought Pokémon Blue Version the day it came out and instantly sat down on the curb outside of the store and started playing. After college, I had a friend who was currently working as a tester at Nintendo of America, Inc. and said he would give me a ride if I got hired. Lucky for me, I was able to get in as a tester and that was the start of my career here at Nintendo! I actually had to walk 4 miles to and from his house uphill both ways—which is pretty funny—but after a few months, I had enough money for a down payment on a car. I still smile every day when I drive into work and see the Nintendo sign in front of our offices!
AK: What advice would you give to kids that would like to pursue a career in this field?
SM: It really depends on what they want to do in the industry. In my line of work, it was my skills in English and creative writing that really helped when I was doing localization on the Pokémon games. For what I do now, I find that public speaking is a huge benefit. It’s so important to be well spoken when you’re representing a game like Pokémon! A lot of people don’t realize how many other jobs there are in the video game industry other than developing games!
AK: Who has been a mentor to you in your career?
SM: I’ve had the pleasure of working with so many great people throughout my career here—Nintendo of America, Inc. is filled with such an amazing group of people. I feel lucky to get to come to work each day with them. In all honesty though, it’s not someone here who inspires me, it’s the fans of the Pokémon games! I’m so amazed by their dedication and knowledge, and it’s just awesome to be able to work on things they enjoy and talk about! I love going to events where I can hang out with them and just be myself—another Pokémon fan!
AK: What plans does Nintendo have for Pokémon in the future?
SM: Well, there is Pokémon Conquest coming out in June, and it’s a really fun and interesting way to play Pokémon! You take on the role of a young Warlord who is linked with a Pokémon, and together with your Pokémon, you must set out to recruit Warrior allies to strengthen your growing kingdom. Along your journey, you will encounter a variety of Pokémon, as well as Warriors and Warlords inspired by the Japanese feudal era. It’s a unique twist combining Pokémon and Warlords and it’s such a fun game to play! I think every Pokémon fan should try it out! Beyond that, we’ve already announced that Pokémon Black Version 2 and Pokémon White Version 2 are coming out this Fall. I can’t say anything about them right now, but they will be awesome games! We’ll be talking more about them in the coming months, so make sure you check Pokémon.com often!