It’s quite easy to understand why there are so many great games like Pokemon available for discerning trainers to enjoy. After all, after the original Pokemon launched in 1996, the beloved RPG series brought us innumerable adventures, from the core series of the media franchise to memorable spin-offs. The list of Pokemon clones doesn’t end, and we’re happy to introduce yet another entry — Palworld — a combination of a 3D open-world Pokemon with first-person shooter/survival elements.
As stated above, Palworld is a colorful, open-world survival crafting game developed by Pocketpair Games, which, according to Polygon, also features plenty of violence associated with the FPS and survival genre. The newest gameplay highlights feature the player’s character capturing various creatures with pretty incredible fighting abilities into a device akin to a Poke ball. However, there are also some very distinctive elements in the new game that adds a layer of realism — if this was indeed a Pokemon game, it would be the most realistic one so far.
For example, Pokemon games are usually centered on Pokemon battles, with trainers capturing Pokemons that are defeated by their companions and are too weary of fighting and defending themselves. In Palworld, your Pal is still fighting other wild Pals, and you’re more of an assistance than just verbal support — you’re actually equipped with a hunting weapon that’s used to bring down wild Pals and enable their capture.
But wait, there’s more. Palworld is actually Pokemon with guns, and the game takes the adorable monsters and completely reimagines the entire in-game world and narrative elements. For example, Pals in the wilderness adhere to a certain food chain, and just like real-life animals, they’re not only exploitable for labor, but they’re also edible. Some are living in harmony with people and aiding household chores, like gardening, just about everything you might expect from an episode of the Pokemon animated series.
But this Pokemon clone adds another, darker layer to the narrative, as Pals can be forced into factory labor and, just like real-life animals, have medical and cosmetical tests conducted on them. There’s also a gathering and crafting element to the game, in which your Pals help you gather materials, either from natural resources or from other Pals. These Palworld pastel-colored monsters are also helping with the crafting gameplay element, and as seen in the trailer above, they’re more than willing to help with various activities — including hunting their pals from the wilds.
In fact, not only do these Pokemon-like creatures fight and hunt for you, but they’re also your means of transportation throughout the game’s world, and you can upgrade them with various ballistic weaponry to aid in combat/hunt. In all honesty, the game looks fantastic, and for anyone thinking about how Pokemon would play out in the real world, this game offers the answer. Palworld is still in development, and there’s no clear release date set. From what we know so far, the game is due to release in 2022, but it wouldn’t be surprising if the game, like many others, gets delayed.