Palworld’s Popularity Explosion Came At A Cost, Something Pocket Pair Can’t Afford

If you think only failure causes problems, ask Pocket Pair.

Story Highlights

  • It won’t be an understatement to call Palworld the most surprising explosion of the decade.
  • Since Pocket Pair went into it with little expectations, the sudden outburst was too much to handle.
  • Extreme success can sometimes cause problems, as it did for Pocket Pair, now willing for an acquisition.

Over the years, the video game industry has gone through many surprise twists, things nobody expected. Sometimes, it was a highly anticipated game turning out to be not what people expected, like Cyberpunk 2077 on launch. Then, you had some very unexpected titles becoming a lot more successful than what even the developers envisioned. These were both from big companies, like Hi-Fi Rush for example, and indies that surprised us all, particularly Palworld.

YouTube video

Palworld Became A Worldwide Phenomenon; Too Much For The Developers

At this point, I don’t think Palworld needs any introduction. A very unique take on the Pokemon concept, with guns and violence mixed in, it was a bigger surprise than anything. It wasn’t just the concept that was interesting, the execution was equally brilliant. Palworld is a very enjoyable adventure where you get Pokemon and the right to shoot stuff all in one package.

What was even more shocking was the overwhelming reception it received. Palworld blew up to unimaginably large proportions immediately after release. I don’t think it would be an exaggeration to say that it was the surprise of the decade in video game successes.

Let’s be honest.
byu/Sudden-Tie-9614 inPalworld

Everywhere you went on the Internet, you saw Palworld. I guess people were just desperate for a proper enjoyable Pokemon game. However, there was an inevitable downside to all this.

Palworld was a victim of the unfortunate “suffering from success.” Why’s that? The developer studio behind Palworld is a pretty small group that made this project with few expectations in mind. When it exploded, they were as overwhelmed as you and I were shocked. Palworld’s servers soon overcrowded, with the devs unable to keep up with the increased demand.

Palworld's popularity explosion was too much to handle, even for the devs
Palworld’s popularity explosion was too much to handle, even for the devs

Pocket Pair even released official statements about the need for more hands on deck to sustain this success. It apologized to Palworld fans for any delays and said it’s working consistently to improve things. But the fact remains that Palworld’s success was too much to handle, even for the devs.

Pocket Pair Is Even Opting For Partnerships and Acquisitions Now

Palworld’s success hasn’t ceased even now, and it continues to be a concern for Pocket Pair as well. Things have very much gone out of the hands of the devs, as they were a humble team pursuing small indie projects, and then Palworld just became a super success; now they’re in a bind.

In an official statement, Pocket Pair’s head expressed how Palworld blew up a lot more than anyone’s wildest expectations, and it’s at a point where the company can no longer manage it appropriately. As such, they’re open to any partnerships or acquisitions to better sustain Palworld’s fame and success.

According to Palworld’s JP Twitter, they are severely short of people and looking for developers
byu/Turbostrider27 inGames

Moreover, it was confirmed that no existing acquisition talks are in progress right now, so they’re open to any such discussions. And I believe this is for the best. An acquisition by someone who cares for Palworld will not only help Pocket Pair run the game, but it’ll be a blessing for the game itself, too. 

However, that also raises a negative side. Palworld has been enormously successful primarily because Pocket Pair was a small studio free of any restrictions. If it ends up in the hands of someone who takes away this free reign, I fear that Palworld will no longer be the creative adventure we’ve come to love, and I’d like to avoid that.

An acquisition is a good idea, sure, but needs to be thought out critically, for the sake of Palworld as well.

Palworld's creative freedom existed precisely because Pocket Pair was a small studio
Palworld’s creative freedom existed precisely because Pocket Pair was a small studio

Too Much Success Opens A Brand New Set of Problems

All in all, Palworld’s success and renown were so massive that it was of course a cause of joy, but also many problems as well. What does that tell you? Most importantly, it’s that too much of anything can be a problem. I used to think that studios that failed their games had it bad. Now, I realize that too much success leads to some different kinds of problems, too.

Just take a look at Pocket Pair. It could never have known that sustaining Palworld would become this much of a problem for its current resources. Still, from the developer statements, we know that it wishes to remain a small studio and work on indie projects full of love and dedication, and I respect that.

Pocket Pair was a small studio, so the problem with too much success is pretty self-explanatory here, but it can happen with big companies as well, like Helldivers 2 for example. Sony’s multi-platform co-op blew up so much that even a company as big as Sony had troubles, can you blame Pocket Pair?

Suffering from success
byu/Necronomicz inHelldivers

Now, it has a brand new set of concerns. First is how to manage the game, and things are bad enough that they’re ready to give up their independent status to sustain this. Next up is who to sign an acquisition deal with. A lot of factors need to be considered before making it official.

On The Bright Side, Palworld Shows Creativity Is Still Alive

Okay, that’s enough doom and gloom for one day. It’s success and popularity we’re discussing, it’s not like a game failed (kinda ironic, right?) Let’s look at the bright side of things. This overwhelming success Palworld has achieved is solid proof that creativity is still very much appreciated, and imaginative developers still exist.

Pokemon seriously needs to up its game
Pokemon seriously needs to up its game

Palworld was kind of a wake-up call for Pokemon games to ditch their monotony and look on the fun side. An indie attempt immediately blew out of control, which shows just how much people value creative freedom to just run wild. Who even expected a Pokemon with guns? No one did, and that’s precisely why it was so beloved.

This game is better than S/V imo
byu/nagyiskc inPalworld

This should be a sign for all the big developers out there, too. People value freedom above strict rules and a suffocating script. Sometimes, a little creative absurdity and ridiculousness are all that I need, and Palworld provided just that. I hope imaginative approaches never die.

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Hanzala is a dedicated writer who expresses his views as opinion pieces at eXputer. He's always been fascinated by gaming and has been an avid consumer of many different genres for over a decade. His passion for games has him eager to encounter the latest RPGs and actively look for new Soulslike to challenge. He puts forth his experience and knowledge of gaming into captivating opinion pieces.

Experience: 8+ months || Education: Bachelors in Chemistry.

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