Palworld is big business. This Pokémon-inspired survival game hit one million concurrent players two days after release, peaking at 2.1 million. And with merchandise in the works, the Paltrain shows no sign of stopping. But, according to one report, Japan’s entertainers and celebrities have been warned not to talk about Palworld.
As reported by VGC, Japanese outlet Tokyo Sports has heard the entertainers one agency represents are told not to mention Palworld. We’re not talking about paid endorsements, according to Tokyo Sports’ source, just bringing the game up is strongly discouraged.
“We have told our talent not to mention Palworld on social media or in public.. in consideration of future potential collaborations”, the source states. The implication is that mentioning Palworld, which is clearly influenced by Pokémon, could rub Nintendo up the wrong way. And that, in turn, could jeopardize collaborations with the Pokémon Company/Nintendo.
That’s the theory, at least. If Tokyo Sports’s source is, indeed, correct, that doesn’t mean that Nintendo has been putting pressure on anyone. More likely, it’s just that agency playing it safe. But if Nintendo did take action against Palworld developer Pocketpair, it could be embarrassing for any of Japan’s celebrities or entertainers who praised it.
Nintendo previously issued a general statement (via NintendoLife), explaining that they’ll take appropriate action to “..address any acts that infringe on intellectual property rights related to the Pokémon”. They didn’t specifically name Palworld but it was pretty clear what the statement was in response to. Pocketpair has been accused of using AI to create its ‘Pals’, but there’s no solid evidence this is the case.
Palworld launched into early access last month and has hit hit 19 million players, including those on Game Pass. You can also buy it on Xbox and PC, via both the Xbox store and Steam.