Palworld is the biggest third-party Game Pass launch

Palworld, the controversial game dubbed as “Pokémon with guns,” has achieved remarkable success, selling a staggering 19 million copies since its Early Access launch, despite receiving mixed reviews. Developer Pocketpair disclosed that out of this total, 12 million copies were sold on Steam, while seven million found their way to Xbox platforms following the January 19 release. This momentum led Microsoft to declare Palworld as the most significant third-party launch on Game Pass.

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Expressing gratitude for the overwhelming support, Pocketpair CEO Takuro Mizobe acknowledged the tremendous response from fans worldwide. He conveyed excitement about the ongoing journey with Palworld, emphasizing that the valuable feedback collected during the Game Preview phase would guide them in enhancing the experience for Pal Tamers across all platforms.

Palworld’s triumph extends beyond just sales numbers. Notably, it claimed the title of the largest third-party Game Pass launch and experienced the most extensive third-party day-one launch on Xbox Cloud Gaming, a feature bundled with Game Pass Ultimate. The game’s peak performance on Xbox reached almost three million daily active users, making it the most-played game on Xbox platforms during that period.

Despite drawing comparisons to Pokémon with its creature-collecting concept, Palworld ventures into unique territory. It incorporates sharp social commentary, addressing themes such as labor exploitation. A game FAQ humorously states, “Don’t worry, there are no labor laws for Pals.” The juxtaposition of cute characters engaging in battles with firearms and the inclusion of unconventional themes sets Palworld apart from traditional Pokémon games.

Microsoft underlined its commitment to supporting Pocketpair as they continue to refine Palworld during the Early Access phase. Joe Skrebels from Xbox Wire revealed that Pocketpair is actively listening to player feedback and implementing improvements. Notably, one of the most requested features, cross-play, is in the pipeline.

While early reviews indicate a mixed reception regarding the game’s fun and polish, Microsoft’s backing provides valuable resources to Pocketpair. The tech giant is contributing dedicated servers and engineering support to optimize GPU and memory workload. Palworld has also affirmed its commitment to addressing bugs promptly.

As Palworld progresses towards a full 1.0 release, the collaboration between Pocketpair and Microsoft signals a promising future for this unconventional and attention-grabbing gaming experience.