Does Palworld use AI art? Controversy explored as community speculates Pocketpair took shortcuts

Does Palworld use AI art?
Does Palworld use AI art? (Image via Pocketpair)

Against the backdrop of raging success, discussions surrounding Palworld have steered into whether the title uses AI art and its distinct design similarities with Pokemon. The latter has been a talking point ever since the game was revealed, with many calling it Pokemon with guns.

Ever since the game's launch, various X posts have shed light on the striking similarities between several Pokemon and Pal designs. These have led to spirited discussions, with many in the community wanting to avoid the game altogether.

The controversy intensified when @imZaytri shared a number of posts discussing Pocketpair (the developer behind Palworld) and AI art at length.

Palworld faces AI art allegations as community wonders if Pocketpair took shortcuts

@imZaytri noted that one of the earlier titles from Pocketpair was AI: Art Imposter, which revolved around an AI Image generator being used by players. This was followed by posts depicting Pocketpair's CEO Takuro Mizobe talking about AI that generates images as a potential way to circumvent copyright issues.

Google translation of the CEO's X posts revealed discussions regarding AI-generated images resolving copyright issues and marveling at fake Pokemon generated by AI. Another post in April 2023 stated that we could see "true AI-powered games on gpt4" later that year.

In a recent blog post, the CEO mentioned that the company's new graduate artist could create designs frighteningly quickly, and with their help, the CEO could complete 100 Pal designs. @imZaytri concluded it could be because "much of it wasn't original."

None of this provides a clear-cut confirmation regarding whether Palworld used AI-generated art to design Pals in the game world. We must wait and see whether Pocketpair responds to these allegations or decides to avoid any conversation regarding the same.

The industry at large has been grappling over the past several months with AI image generation and the copyright issues that stem from it. Coming to video games, Valve shared a blog post on AI content on the platform last week, stating that developers need to disclose if and how they have used AI in developing their games.

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Edited by Adarsh J Kumar