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The Pokémon Company confirm investigation into Palworld

By - | Views: 47,788

Well this could be about to get interesting, as The Pokémon Company have actually released a statement in regards to all the speculation about Palworld amid many claims of copying Pokémon's homework.

So far, there's no really solid proof that I can see of any actual direct copying (or of any AI use that people keep claiming too). There's a good few similarities to a few Pokémon, but lots of the examples people keep sharing around don't have me overly convinced. 

Here's what The Pokémon Company said (source):

Inquiries Regarding Other Companies’ Games

We have received many inquiries regarding another company’s game released in January 2024. 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. We will continue to cherish and nurture each and every Pokémon and its world, and work to bring the world together through Pokémon in the future.

The Pokémon Company

They didn't name Palworld directly, likely as that might put them in hot water if nothing comes of it.

Really, this reads a bit like a "please stop emailing us" statement. It was obvious they were going to look into it. Nintendo and The Pokémon Company are notoriously tough on taking action and they already started wiping traces of a Pokémon mod for Palworld. Even Nexus Mods have said they will not be hosting any such mods.

Again, they cannot take action just because it's a game that has monster catching in it. Pokémon don't own that idea, they can't. They could only take action for actual plagiarism. And as a whole, Palworld is actually objectively a very different game to anything Pokémon has put out.

In other news, Palworld crossed 8 million copies sold now.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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SentakuHM Jan 25
it seems that they want some money!
jams3223 Jan 25
Nintendo don't own an art style, so there's nothing that they should be thinking of doing; the game has nothing related to them other than using the same art style as them but totally different designs. I am sick of people saying Nintendo owns a quadrupedal animal design like they're gods or something; the originator of these designs is God himself. Also,  don't tell me that they've copied the monster-catching formula from Nintendo because they weren't the first to invent monster-catching games.
Hermes Jan 25
Well, the overall style of most pals is something that derives heavily from pokémon. I think that's the issue, more than the game itself. Some Pals are flagrant Pokemon copies. It's not about the game per se being a copy of Pokémon. It's about the pals being pokémon copies.
TheRiddick Jan 25
This was probably spurred up by Pokemon cultists frothing at the mount in anger on reddit who no doubt were hounding Nintendo and Pokemon company every 5minutes to sue/delete PalWorld!
Liam Dawe Jan 25
Quoting: TheRiddickThis was probably spurred up by Pokemon cultists frothing at the mount in anger on reddit who no doubt were hounding Nintendo and Pokemon company every 5minutes to sue/delete PalWorld!
The state of social media is frankly batshit crazy, people frothing at the mouth "defending" Pokemon and Nintendo, going on some kind of crusade as if Nintendo gives a shit about anything but profits. It amazes me how people knight for companies like this, I've rarely seen anything like it. People absolutely determined to find things wrong with Palworld.

I'm never going to stick up for actual plagiarism if it's ever proven (which as of yet, it is not) of course.
Klaus Jan 25
Quoting: HermesIt's about the pals being pokémon copies.

My thought too. Googling for "Palworld screenshots" shows me some pals that look like carbon copies of

- Eevee (ger. Evoli)
- Meowth (ger. Maunzi)
- Electabuzz (ger. Elektek)

I thought at first that the "flamethrower" Pal looks like a Pokemon too, but it ends up just being most vaguely similar to something in between the fire version of Eevee (Flareon, ger. Flamara) and Vulpix. So on that one I am conflicted. "Fluffy canine-like fire breather" is generic in the grand theme of monster-catching games, and the "orange to red" for fire monsters too. The fluffy sheep-like ones vaguely remind me of something, but I'm not sure its even Pokemon.

But the three listed above are too close for Nintendo not to sue. Not about the gameplay, but about the specific designs.

On the plus side, that's an issue that can be fixed without taking down the game entirely.

Last edited by Klaus on 25 January 2024 at 12:16 pm UTC
eldaking Jan 25
We generally have a very tenuous grasp on what is legally distinct or not, and the game clearly wants to be as close to pokemon as possible.

I personally think it is fine, but I have seen people comparing the 3d meshes and they look way closer - with textures it is clearly distinct, but I don't know if the meshes being too similar might be infringement?

But I must say that I really, really don't care for Nintendo's intellectual property. As far as I'm concerned, anyone should be able to sell games containing the Nintendo-created Pokemon. The original 151 are almost thirty years old, IMO they should be on the public domain already. So yeah, screw Nintendo, they might find a valid legal argument but morally fuck them.
TheRiddick Jan 25
Honestly all creative arts are based off ideas previously thought up or done, its transformative arts afterall.

The issue is when it comes to DIRECT copying works. And this is where it gets grey because AI algorithms take works of arts and modifies them, but without the original authors works it has nothing, cannot come up with anything on its own.

This is not the case with humans, we can spin up crap without original concepts in our head, it just rarely happens.

So I don't think PalWorld can be sued for plagiarism! that would break the entire legal system and put us into a dark future where everyone gets sued by the big powerful companies.

But they can sue if they find a model that is a 1:1 copy of their works or has stolen assets, that is copyright infringement which has a place in the courts.

That is my 2 cents about it all. Sorry if I'm misinformed about something, just the way I understand it atm.

Quoting: Klauscarbon copies

NONE of them are carbon copies, some are quite close, but none are carbon copies from what I've seen. A simple vertices inspection would reveal that.

Last edited by TheRiddick on 25 January 2024 at 1:15 pm UTC
mindedie Jan 25
Quoting: Klaus- Eevee (ger. Evoli)
- Meowth (ger. Maunzi)
- Electabuzz (ger. Elektek)
- cartoonish desert fox.
- bipedal anime/cartoon/children book cat, done multiple times before Pokemon creator was even born.
- ogre in full tiger suit? stylized golem?
...just make any cartoonish style real/phantasy creature or thing and will "infringer" one of 1000+ Pokemon. No doubt, would find some sport team mascot looking like some Pokemon, conceived years or decades before Pokemon game... just wearing teams attire/logo.
Talon1024 Jan 25
There is already clear-cut solid evidence of plaigiarism on the part of Pocketpair.

But since they made so much money from Palworld, one would hope they would use it to hire on a few more artists so that the Pokemon ripoff designs can be replaced with less infringing designs and models.

Last edited by Talon1024 on 25 January 2024 at 1:29 pm UTC
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