Pokemon Players to Face Off, Grab Lunch

Pokemon is ratcheting up its promotion for its new Pokemon: Diamond and Pokemon: Pearl video games, sponsoring an international video game tournament and offering promotional items through a partnership with Burger King.

Sixty-four of the world’s best Pokemon: Diamond and Pokemon: Pearl video game players from the U.S. and Japan will have a chance to face off in the first ever Pokemon Video Game Showdown, set for Aug. 16 in Orlando, Fla.

Finalists will be chosen at two qualifying tournaments, in which 256 entrants will fight for one of 16 spots from each city advancing to the finals. Qualifying tournaments will be July 12 in Los Angeles and July 19 in New York. Potential contestants need to register and complete an online quiz at http://showdown.pokemon.com.

Meanwhile, Burger King will offer one of 12 exclusive Pokemon game cards and an accessory with each BK Kids Meal as part of a worldwide promotional agreement.

Burger King will be the exclusive outlet for the cards, which are based on the Pokemon: Diamond and Pearl trading card game and features characters from the Pokemon: Diamond and Pokemon: Pearl video games.

The promotion runs from July 7 to Aug. 3 in the United States and from late summer into the fall internationally. Pok’mon: Diamond & Pearl the Movie: Giratina and the Sky’s Bouquet: Shaymin is the long title of the 11th Pokemon movie, which is scheduled for release in Japanese theaters on July 19, 2008.