The Pokémon Company is currently "investigating" Palworld
Following claims that Pocketpair copied monster designs from Pokémon for its survival game Palworld over the past week, The Pokémon Company has confirmed that it is looking into whether the game infringes on its intellectual property.
Palworld has been a huge success since its release last week, selling over eight million copies on PC and Xbox and achieving the second highest concurrent player count on Steam. However, its developer has been accused of using AI and stealing Pokémon assets to create its own creatures.
TPC has now confirmed that it is "investigating" whether the game violates its IP rights or if the "Pal" designs are just similar. “We have received many inquiries regarding another company’s game released in January 2024,” the company said. “We have not granted any permission for the use of Pokémon intellectual property or assets in that game. We intend to investigate and take appropriate measures to address any acts that infringe on intellectual property rights related to the Pokémon.”
Palworld's gameplay has few similarities to the Pokémon franchise, with a focus on survival rather than collecting monsters, but some of its designs have been highlighted for being too similar to Pokémon. Some Pals have dimensions and features resembling existing Pokémon, including one with a face nearly identical to Galarian Meowth's.
Speaking with Automation, Pocketpair CEO and Palworld director Takuro Mizobe dismissed the accusations, stating that the game had passed legal reviews and that no company, including Nintendo and TPC, was taking any action against the studio. “We make our games very seriously, and we have absolutely no intention of infringing upon the intellectual property of other companies,” Mizobe said.
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