The Pokémon Company seemingly acknowledges Palworld as it confirms plans to ‘investigate’ any potential IP infringement

Detective Pikachu looking contemplative in Detective Pikachu Returns.
(Image credit: The Pokémon Company / Nintendo)

The Pokémon Company has released a statement “regarding another company’s game released in January 2024,” and outlined its plans to “investigate” and “take appropriate measures to address any acts that infringe on intellectual property rights related to the Pokémon.”

“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,” the statement reads. 

“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.”

While not explicitly named, it certainly appears that Pocketpair’s new crafting and survival game Palworld could be the game that The Pokémon Company is referring to. Ever since it was unveiled, gamers began to refer to Palworld as ‘Pokémon with guns,’ since, like in Pokémon, you can capture and raise creatures, but fight with or against them using guns and weapons. It was released in early access last week and has already sold over eight million copies on Steam alone, but despite its success, it’s received criticism from some for its similarities to Pokémon

The producer of Palworld and the CEO of Pocketpair, Takuro Mizobe, recently said in an interview with Automaton that although Palworld references Pokémon “as a great predecessor of its genre, Palworld feels completely different as a game.” Furthermore, he added that “we have absolutely no intention of infringing upon the intellectual property of other companies,” and as of January 15, “we have undergone legal reviews, and at this moment, there have been no specific actions taken by other companies.”

Regardless, it remains to be seen whether anything will come from The Pokémon Company’s investigation, or if any action will be taken. 

If you love Pokémon, be sure to check out our ranking of the best Pokémon games to look for your next adventure. You can also check out our roundup of the best Nintendo Switch games for some new titles to play.  

Catherine Lewis
News Writer, TechRadar Gaming

Catherine is a News Writer for TechRadar Gaming. Armed with a journalism degree from The University of Sheffield, she was sucked into the games media industry after spending far too much time on her university newspaper writing about Pokémon and cool indie games, and realising that was a very cool job, actually. She previously spent 19 months working at GAMINGbible as a full-time journalist. She loves all things Nintendo, and will never stop talking about Xenoblade Chronicles.