Palworld Causes Controversy Over Supposed AI Usage
By Yung Namahage • 1 month ago

Probably the biggest Pokémon competitor/clone to date, Palworld has been all the rage since it released in early access on Steam just a few days ago. The designs are very blatantly inspired by those from Pokémon, but the guns, human trafficking and edgy sense of humor is enough to make it distinct enough and garner a fanbase of its own. Or maybe it's the closest we've ever gotten to playing Pokémon on non-Nintendo systems. However, not everyone is pally with Palworld, particularly due to comments the CEO of the developer has made over AI.

Takuro Mizobe, CEO of Pocket Pair, has talked about AI plenty of times over the years on Twitter. People have unearthed these recently and are beginning to suspect it means he used AI somewhere in Palworld, particularly in the creaton of Pals (the not-Pokémon). It also doesn't help that he previously released a game called AI Art Imposter, which is essentially a party game centered around AI art generation.

However, it was then proven that the tweet about AI-generated Pokémon were actually in reply to BuzzFeed data scientist Max Woolf, who was actually the one responsible for using AI to generate fake Pokémon.

While Mizobe seems to have a positive view of AI, there still isn't definitive proof of Pocket Pair using any in the creation of Palworld, or for designing the many Pals. That's not to say they're truly original, as Twitter users are pointing out, human artists are just as capable of ripping off existing designs as any generative network.

What do you guys think? Have you played Palworld, and do you think it was made with the help of AI? Does it even matter? Sound off below!