From the Video Game Industry to Life in Dongguan

Spanning over three decades, Tim Page’s career is a dream come true for any millennial. After graduating from Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne with a double bachelor’s in computer science and Japanese, he joined the first team of Nintendo in Australia.

“I always liked games. I think when I was young, I really liked it because it was a lot more skill based,” Tim said. “My dad brought a computer home one day and said ‘son, this is the future’. That was 1984.” He started programming by himself and it quickly became a passion.

He decided to opt for a second major in university after realizing that video games derived from Japan. “How (can I make) my resume look better than other people’s? By having that point of difference, it was enough as a talking point to get you to the interview.” He wasn’t particularly chasing a video games job due to the lack of advertisement. However, one day, he noticed a Nintendo recruitment ad and immediately applied.

Nintendo only had seven people in Australia, and he made it onto the team. “I happened to join at the right place at the right time. And it then went from seven to 50 and to 100. It exploded.”

After working with sales, he finally developed a cricket game for the Australian market. “We put a plan together with a local studio down in Melbourne, presented it internally and they gave us a shot.”

The Japanese office required them to double their projection numbers from 50 to 100,000 and they beat that number too. “That kind of opened the door for studios out of Japan to develop their own games. We cracked the egg,” Tim said proudly.

He then moved on to EA, a major worldwide game company. “I was poached by EA. It was a small industry in Australia, and I guess they found out through headhunters. I jumped on a plane, went out there and did an interview with them.” His job at EA was to travel around the world and find games developed by smaller studios that they could license and distribute through their brand. He was responsible for getting games such as Sim City. After joining THQ, he moved to Shanghai in 2008 on a mission to expand their business in the Asian market. “In the late 2000s, online games were just exploding in Asia. There was no better spot than China to do that.”

“What we tried to do was grab some of our popular, well-known licensed products and bring them to the Asian market. We built a lot of the components from the ground up to really suit the local market here. We did it for the WWE games and the Company Heroes.”

Two years ago, he moved to Dongguan for his second career, doing smart displays for SoundWedge, a brand that he helped to create. The experience he gained in his first game-developing career gave him the edge in bringing smart IT solutions to the retail world and consumer shopping experience.