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Palworld: “Pokémon With Guns” Becomes Steams Highest Concurrent Played Game Ever

The brand new hit game Palworld, dubbed “Pokemon with guns” has sold 7 million copies in 5 days, becoming Steam's highest concurrently played game of all time. 

Created by Japanese development company Pocketpair, the release of Palworld on Friday the 19th of January has taken the gaming world by storm. 

Described as a “multiplayer monster-collecting game with open-world survival elements", Palworld has been an instant success, leading to so many players playing the game that many have complained about long login times and server crashes. 

Its creatures have drawn incredible similarities to already established Pokémon characters, and has thus been criticised as a Pokémon rip-off by many fans.

In the game “pal-tamers” as the players are called are tasked with travelling around the game world battling creatures known as “pals” to capture and recruit them, as well as taking on human foes. 

These “pals” can be utilised in numerous ways, either by aiding the player in battle, or to be put to work in the players base to create supplies and items used by the player. 

So far the games peak player base has reached over 2 million concurrent players, beating out the likes of Counter Strike 2 which previously held the top spot at just under 1 million concurrent players. 

The U.K News Editor for IGN, Wesley Yin-Poole, said in an interview with the BBC that early interest in the game "gave us an indication that it was going to be very popular, but no one expected it to be as popular as it has proven over the weekend". 

He said Pocketpair is a small developer "with a few games under its belt, but nothing explosively popular like this". 

"The Last of Us Part Two sold four million copies in three days. Palworld has sold faster than the fastest-selling PlayStation exclusive of all time, the success is astronomical." "It just goes to show that this sort of genre is immensely popular and, personally, I'm just surprised it's taken this long for someone to do something like this." 

As of the writing of this article, Palworld has a review score of “Very Positive” on Steam with just under 75 thousand reviews, yet even with this there are still some who don't view the game in a favourable light. 

Clydor on Steam reviews the game negatively saying “At first the similarities between pokemon didn't bother me and I really enjoyed the game. But now that we've learned that most of these pals are straight up stolen 3d models, I've uninstalled.” 

“It's not about defending Gamefreak or Pokemon. It's about the precedence that is set by turning a blind eye just because it's fun. If the small guys can just copy, then the big guys will do it with more money and power. It's not about defending Nintendo, it's about defending the little guy who now just has to accept others can steal their art. Literally almost EVERY pal has a Pokemon counterpart. I'd understand one or two, but they are straight up the same mesh models.” 

Other reviews have also pointed out similarities between the gameplay of Palworld and other survival games, such as Ark: Survival and Rust, however Westley believes that these similarities are not "necessarily problematic from a legal standpoint". 

"While it has got monsters that are very similar to Pokémon, the way the game plays is very different”.

"What's really impressive about it, is just how well it's taken ideas from other games and blended them together to create this really compelling mishmash of concepts. So I think that's more about what's happening here than simply just ripping off Pokémon." 

Other issues, such as connectivity problems and bugs, have been addressed by Palworlds developers stating that the game is currently in “early access”, meaning that it is not the finished product, but has been released regardless of that to give players a chance to play the game early and also to give the company more time and resources to be able to polish the game with its astonishing sales. 

Yet with over 50,000 inquiries made so far Poketpair has said that these issues are to be expected, and that they would "share information about the fixes for these issues as soon as possible". 

Edited by Chloe Mansola 

Image “Palworld” by Poketpair, Inc is licenced under CC BY 4.0 DEED


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