February 26, 2024

Palworld has seemingly come out of nowhere, cannonballing into Twitch feeds and Steam charts despite its extreme similarities to both Pokémon and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. But considering the game is still in early access release, it’s doing some major numbers.

Developed by Japanese developer Pocketpair, the action-adventure, role-playing survival game dropped on Steam, Xbox, and Windows PC on Jan. 18 and has already sold over 5 million copies in a few days. As IGN points out, that’s more than Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us Part II, which sold 4 million copies in three days, Insomniac’s Marvel’s Spider-Man (3.3 million copies), and Sony’s God of War reboot (3.1 million copies).

Palworld is a large open-world map that where you can build bases and “peacefully live alongside mysterious creatures known as Pals or risk your life to drive off a ruthless poaching syndicate.” You can use the Pals to fight your battles, force them into labour roles, sell them, or eat them — it’s really dark for how cute it all is.

Palworld is currently the top played game on Steam, with a peak of 1.5 million concurrent players, and a total of 74 million hours banked — overtaking Counter-Strike 2 and Dota 2. It’s currently the third most played game on Steam behind the mighty PUBG: Battlegrounds and Counter-Strike 2.

Guess it pays to directly copy one of the biggest franchises of all time — though Pokémon fans, understandably, are beyond mad. Is something burning? Can I smell a lawsuit?