What your brand can learn from the new cultural phenomenon Palworld

Insight

Since the release of the first trailer, Palworld has been dubbed as “Pokémon with guns”. Which makes perfect sense, since it’s a fairly accurate description. But it’s also a bit shortsighted according to the specialists at our Gaming Intelligence team. If you take a closer look, you’ll see that Palworld is much more than just a Pokémon copycat. It's a success story full of valuable lessons for brands.

We at The Invaders channeled our inner Nostradamus and took a look into whaWith all those cuddly creatures running through your screen, it is understandable to compare it to Pokémon. But Palworld is much more than just a monster-hunter game like the famous Nintendo IP. As soon as you start playing, you’ll notice that the gameplay goes deeper than that. Its gameplay also houses other popular elements like action-adventure, base building and survival.

The mind boggling numbers of Palworld

Palworld stands as a compilation of popular features from various games, seamlessly blending successful formulas into one digital world. This approach might not offer any groundbreaking features, but this combination of popular game aspects has resulted in impressive numbers:

  • 19 million copies sold in less than 2 weeks

  • One of the only two games to ever hit 2.000.000+ concurrent players on PC-game marketplace Steam

  • Over 300 million hours played in the first two weeks

  • 3rd most watched game on Twitch, YouTube and Kick with 63M hours watched in the past week

And it’s not just sheer numbers. The overall response to the game is also mostly positive. An impressive feed for a game made by a small team of developers. How did they do it? Getting your inspiration from existing games and IP’s, and blending them together is no new strategy. But it’s rarely successful. Why is Palworld looking to become an exception? Well, because they actually understood the needs of gamers, carefully listened to them and put players first.

Know your audience

The reality of the Pokémon vs Palworld conversation is that the Pokémon community has been asking for Palworld’s popular features like survival, gathering resources, using your creatures or even a PC / console version of the game for years. But Nintendo never fully acknowledged these wishes from the community, and with that left a blank space in players needs that Palworld perfectly filled up.

This level of understanding of the gaming community is the reason why Palworld excelled to the level they have achieved. From the moment it arrived on the scene, it was dubbed as 'Pokémon with guns'. This not only made it highly marketable but, more importantly, intrigued gamers to follow this project. Who wouldn't want to delve into the nostalgia of a game that has been played by generations, now presented in a new jacket?

Just as important is the fact that this jacket not only looks good, but is also quite warm and comfy. It might not be a contender for Game of the Year, but most elements are solid and work well together. It’s still too soon to call it an absolute success, but Palworld is off to a promising start.

What brands can learn from Palworld

Gamers can be protective and picky. We don’t like it when someone meddles with something we love. Unless it's done right and enhances the experience. Palworld took something that’s almost sacred (Pokémon) and shaped it into something that gamers have been wanting for a long time. Many gamers think this is the game that Nintendo should have made with their Pokémon IP’.

If you want your brand to be successful within the world of gaming, it is vital that you keep this in mind. Listen to the players and put their needs first. If you do so, they will embrace your efforts and turn it into a success. Being a household name does not guarantee success. The gaming world doesn't care who you are, but what you bring to the table. Make it good. Make it tasty. Make it something they can’t resist. To do so, you need a chef who knows the right recipe. You need a specialist.

But do stay safe

Palworld is in many ways an interesting example. Also because of the risks it takes by ‘copying’ elements from other games. The Pokémon company has already issued a statement that they would be ‘investigating and taking appropriate measures to address any acts of infringing the intellectual property of Pokémon’. According to experts Palworld appears to be safe for now, but there's definitely still a chance that it will blow up. The success of Palworld could still end abruptly.

This is also something you should consider as a brand. The possibilities within gaming are endless, but in some cases, there are uncertainties surrounding what you can and can’t do. Knowing the legal site of things is therefore just as important as knowing your audience. So be wise, and make sure you consult a specialist before you make a move.

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