The Pokémon 'AI plagiarism' row engulfing Palworld raises so many questions

Palworld; a yellow creature on a tank
(Image credit: Pocketpair)

Palworld is Steam's latest hit game having scooped over two million users in 24 hours, selling 5 million copies in three days, and this despite social media users came out to criticise the game for 'plagiarising' creature designs from Pokémon and for accusations of AI use. Neither of which have been proved. But the suggestion of AI use hasn't harmed player rates or reviews, so are we in a new era of AI-washing?

The Japanese developer Pocketpair released Palword into early access on PC and Xbox on Friday and immediately began burning Epic Games' servers; the survival game, a kind of 'Pokémon with guns', is on track to be the next trending game, up there with Fortnite. So does it matter if Palworld's developer Poketpair has a dark cloud of AI use lingering above it? It seems not, as success and popularity can 'AI-wash' a game, apparently.

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Ian Dean
Editor, Digital Arts & 3D

Ian Dean is Editor, Digital Arts & 3D at Creativebloq, and the former editor of many leading magazines. These titles included ImagineFX, 3D World and leading video game title Official PlayStation Magazine. In his early career he wrote for music and film magazines including Uncut and SFX. Ian launched Xbox magazine X360 and edited PlayStation World. For Creative Bloq, Ian combines his experiences to bring the latest news on AI, digital art and video game art and tech, and more to Creative Bloq, and in his spare time he doodles in Procreate, ArtRage, and Rebelle while finding time to play Xbox and PS5. He's also a keen Cricut user and laser cutter fan, and is currently crafting on Glowforge and xTools M1.