Pokemon 12th anniversary column PART 2!

“Pokemon YELLOW”
In this game, Pikachu cries “pikachu!”, like TV animation.
Of course, there is no such high quality sampling function
on the Game Boy hardware.
Therefore, we must think different way to recreate
the cry of “pikachu!”.

At that time, I was a programmer and I came up with
following idea to solve this problem.
Program the converter to make the sound into
one bit data, and recreating the sound.

The structure is as follows.
First of all, make the sound degitalize using
the equipment, suich as a sampler.
*This is the wave of DIALGA’s cry.

Here’s the maximized picture.

Almost completely degitalized.
Above waves are numerated as sound data.

Then, convert them into “0″ and “1″.

Detail data are…
like above picture.

Since the sound differs depend on
how we set the level of “1″, few different
converting systems were prepared.

Using the Game Boy’s click noise (beep!) to make
“0″ as a silent, and “1″ to sound.
The important part is, to recreate them with very fast speed.
Faster the better. It will give us a nice sound.

Ta-da! “pikachu” is done!

It still sounds cute…

See ya.

(c)1995,1996,1998 Nintendo/Creatures Inc./GAME FREAK inc.


Pokemon 12th anniversary music column!

Today, I’d like to explain the changes of Pokemon music
by comparing main themes of previous series.

*Portion of music only. Also, it includes sound effects.
Thank you for your understanding.

(1) Pokemon RED/BLUE

>Opening demo

>Title theme

Above softwares were developed for the game
machine called “Game Boy.”
Game Boy allow us to use total of four notes.
Coordinated by two square waves, one triangle wave
and one white noise.
Not only I composed the opening theme,
but I also composed the game music,
sound effects and Pokemon cries. All of them.
The opening music was created with the image
of the battle scenes.
“Monster” was the image of the title scene music.
I follow a guide and composed about 30 fifteen seconds
music to confirm the direction.
After this, I started total music composition.
To make the sound gravely, I added one rather heavy
white noise as if sound like marching music.
By changing the volume of white noise little by little,
it expresses a leap sound of snare drum.

(1)Pokemon YELLOW

>Opening demo

Mischievous, naughty, cute, angry, obedience,
fluffy, electric, red cheeks and so on…
I composed from above Pikachu images.
Since a large amount of data transfer was made
while changing scenes during the opening demo,
it was framed not to slow down the music.

(2)Pokemon GOLD/SILVER

>Opening demo

>Title theme

These softwares were also for Game Boy.
I composed the opening demo music,
and our sound designer, Ichinose made the arrangement.
At the very beginning, “ding dong” sounds represent
the bell of starting the brand new adventure.
Regarding the title music, I did the arrangement.
Incidentally, game music were composed by myself and Ichinose.

(3)Pokemon CRYSTAL

>Opening demo

>Title theme

This software was developed for Game Boy Color.
I did little experimental feature with this software, such as
panning(shifting the sound from right and left, vice versa.)
I composed and arranged the opening demo and the
title theme.
Around this time, my main task changed to
the director work. Therefore, the number of the
composed music had drastically decreased.


>Opening demo

>Title theme

The hardware shifted to Game Boy Advance from this point.
Four sampling waves, three square waves and one white noise.
(Even with this specification, game music can drowned out,
once the sound effects beep.)
This title theme had a splendid impact!
Ichinose did the arrangement,
and he sure did the remarkable job! Wonderful!
The battle music was the only part I composed.


>Opening demo

>Title theme

For Game Boy Advance.
All game music were arranged by Ichinose.
We had a discussion and concluded as
not to change from the basic sounds.
The music were arranged by adding extra sounds.


>Title theme

The softwares for Nintendo DS from here.
Any sound can be created with this hardware.
Sampling waves and 16 notes. What a gorgeous feature!
(But considering about the sound effects,
we used ten notes only)
Opening demo and title theme music combined as one
music and it became magnificient.
Ichinose did an excellent job with the music arrangement again.
Can you tell?
The title theme was the arrange of the one from RED/GREEN.
It sound so original. Superb!
The game music were composed by myself, Ichinose and Sato.
I was in charge of the battle scene music.
Sound effects were designed by Nohara.
Whew, our sound staffs are getting increased.
Adding members, Sato and Nohara made the
game sound and music enriched!

How was the column above?
Checking the Pokemon history from
the phase of opening demo and title themes.
It reminds my old memory and also gives me the freshness.
I believe this is one of the POWER OF MUSIC.

See ya.


On February 27th.
The video game “Pocket Monsters RED/GREEN”
for Game Boy was launched in Japan.
many other Pokemon gave a birth.

Today is a very special day, not only for GameFreak,
but to the development staffs including myself.

The initial members of Pokemon RED/GREEN are
still working hard in GameFreak.
And, today is a good day to look back where we came from.

Aiming for high quality creation.
Today, higher than yesterday.
Tomorrow, even higher than today.
We will keep trying our best with passion above.
This passion didn’t change a bit from those days.

And we will keep this thought as the most important thing.

We reached Pokemon 12th anniversary
and we would like to express our gratitude to
the people all over the world.
We deeply appreciate your support.
Thank you very very much!

And… Pokemon still continues to get evolved!



On February 24th(Sun), I visited to the Kyocera Dome
in Osaka.
“I love Pokemon Club Party (Pokemon Daisuki Club Party)”
was held there!
To be precise, this event was exclusive to the members
of Daisuki Club only.

The events were held one in the morning
and the one in the afternoon.
I was impressed by the numbers of the people
and by thier extreme passion!
Many games were ready to play.
The crowd, not only kids, but thier parent
also enjoyed games.

The Kyocera Dome is actually a size of baseball stadium.
I should feel amplitude enough, but I couldn’t!

As I always feel, I really enjoyed the Pokemon events.
I got very excited.

I went to see many spots.
Such as… I checked and realized that the game rules
are really admirable.
Also, taking a lot of pictures.

Then… people started to gathering toward to the stage.
Yes, the Pokemon live show is just about to start!
At the entrance, “flowers” were handed over to
each and every kids.
(I wonder why…?)

On the stage,
The master of ceremony, Pokemon and audience,
entire attendees search for mysterious Pokemon.

As show goes on, everybody in this event call
for the name of Pokemon to face the adversity.
And at last, the show reaches to the conclusion,
kids raised thier hand highly holding “flowers!” all at once!
A carpet of flowers! Created by 2,500 audience!
(I did’t expect the “flower” is used like this!)
Then, the mysterious Pokemon showed up!
What a happy ending!

The last scene of the show.
Each flower was handed to thier parents
as an expression of gratitude!!
“A lot thanks!” from kids to thier mom and dad.
It was a just beautiful sight.

There are many marvelous Pokemon events.
But, this event especially gave me the warm feeling!

For those people who missed this event,
there may be an another chance in the future!
Please check “Daisuki Club” out!!

See ya

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This time, I’d like to write about how we address
oversea’s Pokemon names.

It requires a lot of effort to name enourmous
number of Pokemon.
Addition to this, especially the naming of
leading Pokemon needed to be worldwidely same,
and this is, one tough work.

For example, Pokemon’s name “DIALGA.”
We got a comments from Spanish translation team
in Europe about the image of this name.
Their impressions are… alga and seaweed.
Therefore, they would like to have a different
name other than this.
Well, they are right. Even in English, ALGA
nearly means seaweed.
The image from this word might be certain…

But it is not good to give up easily.
This is the starting point of adjusting
the image and thought.

Even the word ALGA is “alga (close to seaweed),”
the name is constructed with “DI + ALGA.”
Let’s think from the Japanese origin name.

Then… suppose, the part of DI (pronounce “Dee”)
>Does it recognized as Dee+Alga?
(which means Dee + Seaweed?)
>Is there any paticular meaning in DI?
>Does people find out the image of seaweed instantly from this name?
and so on.
Exchange of discussion continues with the word “ALGA.”

This is a sample of naming the pokemon which
will be used the same name worldwide.
And due to the miscellaneous reasons, the name
cocluded to DIALGA.
It was one of the final candidate, and the name sounds
very cool in Japanese.

We finalized the name “DIALGA” in Spainish version also.
Well, what do you think about this name?
I wonder Spanish players image seaweed from this name or not.

Starting from original Japanese.
Then, English, German, French, Spanish, Italian and Korean…
As the world of Pokemon expands, there are pleasure and adversity
of localizing into their languages.