Pokémon, Palworld Controversy Teaches This Developer A Lesson: 'I Try To Avoid Creating New Things'

Zinger Key Points
  • Palworld, likened to "Pokémon with Guns," sparked controversy for resembling Pokémon designs.
  • "The Pal called Sparkit is obviously meant to evoke the Pokémon mascot Pikachu."

Palworld, often dubbed “Pokémon with Guns,” has been at the center of controversy since its early access launch in January 2024.

Developer Pocketpair faced allegations of closely resembling Pokémon designs, prompting Nintendo ADR’s NTDOY The Pokémon Company to announce an investigation into potential intellectual property issues.

See Also: From Meme To Mainstream: Palworld Celebrates 25 Million Players Despite (Or Because?) Of Pokémon Plagiarism Controversy

Despite this, Pocketpair’s founder, Takuro Mizobe, clarified in an interview with Game File that neither Nintendo nor The Pokémon Company had directly contacted them regarding these claims.

“Nintendo and the Pokémon Company didn't say anything to us,” Mizobe stated. “Of course I love Pokémon and respect it. I grew up with it, in my generation.”

Mizobe defended Palworld’s designs by showcasing comparisons between Pal creatures and their Pokémon counterparts, emphasizing both similarities and unique differences. He acknowledged the visual resemblances while asserting Pocketpair’s commitment to originality.

“The Pal called Sparkit is obviously meant to evoke the Pokémon mascot Pikachu,” Mizobe explained. “It's a small, yellow furry electric creature, but it's still very much its own design.”

Despite the controversy, Palworld garnered immense popularity upon its launch, though it was accompanied by unsettling reports of death threats against Pocketpair’s staff. The game’s success continues to unfold with planned updates and potential releases on platforms like Sony Group Corp.’s SONY PlayStation, although a Nintendo Switch version remains uncertain.

When asked by Game File if he learned any lasting lessons from his time at Nintendo, Mizobe replied: “Kind of. I always think: to make new things is very hard. In game development, of course, sometimes we have to do it, but, as much as possible, I try to avoid creating new things.”

Read Next: Palworld’ Success Overwhelms: ‘Too Big for Our Studio,’ But Pocketpair Open To Acquisitions

Image courtesy of Pocketpair via Steam.

Market News and Data brought to you by Benzinga APIs
Posted In: GamingNewsTop StoriesConsumer TechPalworldPokemon
Benzinga simplifies the market for smarter investing

Trade confidently with insights and alerts from analyst ratings, free reports and breaking news that affects the stocks you care about.

Join Now: Free!