10 Best Games Like Palworld

Provided you haven’t been completely off the grid, hiding in a cabin in the woods somewhere, you’ll be aware of the totally 100% legit and legally distinct game known as Palworld. Or as those less informed will know it. Pokemon With Guns. 

It’s a game that blew up beyond all expectations and nearly became the new record holder for the highest concurrent player count on Steam ever, which just shows how hungry gamers have been for a Pokemon game that doesn’t suck. 

It’s a game that I found myself playing more than I would have imagined, but seeing as the game is in early access, and Pocket Pair has a habit of not finishing their games, it’s good practice to try to find a few games like Palworld to play until they provide a fully finished game for fans. 

So with that in mind, here are ten of the Best games like Palworld that you need to try! 

Games Like Palworld

Selection Criteria

Here are the criteria that we used to provide a selection of games that have at least one or more core similarities like Palworld: 

  • This list will primarily be made up of Creature Tamers, Survival Games, and Open World Exploration Games
  • We will only be considering games with a Metacritic of 65% or higher
  • Only one game per franchise 

Okay, let’s get out there and Catch ‘Em All… ahem. I mean, obtain the entire collection! 

Best Games Like Palworld

Best Pokemon Alternative – Pokemon Legends: Arceus

Review: Pokémon Legends Arceus — SwordChomp.com

Where else would we begin realistically? I mean look at Palworld’s Pals! You can practically name every Pokemon that inspired each Pal at a glance.

Pocket Pair hasn’t hidden their adoration of Pokemon and the fact that it is the main inspiration behind their new early access hit. Which by extension makes Pokemon as a series a great alternative for Palworld players. 

While I’m a champion of older GBA Pokemon outings, I have to concede that of all titles available, Pokemon Legends Arceus is by far the closest match due to the semi-open world design where Pokemon run wild and allow for authentic encounters, rather than a fade to black when you enter the tall grass. 

I will warn Palworld players that games like Pokemon Legends: Arceus is the reason why so many people swooned when Palworld arrived on the scene, but if you want more of the same, this is a good pick for sure. 

Best All-Round Creature Tamer – Cassette Beasts

Cassette Beasts Dev On Doing What Pokémon Doesn't In A Zelda-Inspired  Overworld | Nintendo Life

Palworld is regularly referred to as a Pokemon Killer, but I have been telling people that Pokemon has been dead for years, and it’s because of games like Cassette Beasts, which is a creature-taming RPG much like retro Pokemon games of old, but dare I say, better. 

Cassette Beasts offers a fresh take on Game Freak’s tired formula, offering monsters that scale with you, meaning your team is made up of favorites rather than those with the highest level, not to mention a much more sophisticated elemental system, a fusion system and so much more.

Add in the fact that New Wirral plays host to a much more engaging, mature story than Pokemon has ever delivered, and you have a Pokemon Killer that was proudly boasting that accolade long before Palworld was on the scene. So for a cultured and fresh take on the creature-tamer RPG, this is a great game to try. 

Best Like-For-Like Gameplay – Ark: Survival Evolved

ARK: Survival Ascended on X:

If you’re looking for something that offers that blend of survival mechanics and creature taming that Palworld offers, really there is only one option that will even come close, and that’s Ark: Survival Evolved. Another game that Pocket Pair has unashamedly stated they were inspired by. 

In this game, you’ll have to do all the survival staples, like get wood and stone, build crafting stations, build a base, and pray that some griefer doesn’t raid you. But the main selling point of this game is the dinosaurs that roam the land. Which serve as both a threat and an ally if you can manage to tame them. 

Sure, it’s a bit more grounded in reality when compared to Palworld, but the survival game loop pretty much remains the same. Build a base, and tame dinos to help with progression. Minus the colorful designs and silliness, this is about as close to Palworld as you will likely get. 

Best For Battling Monsters- Monster Hunter: World

Monster Hunter World review – feast of fun and fury where you're on the  menu | Games | The Guardian

Taming monsters is great, sure. But what about going out into the world with your party of warriors with the sole focus of taking them down instead? Why be a Pal Tamer, when you can be a Monster Hunter? 

Monster Hunter is a series that is very much aligned with the JRPG genre, playing like a modern-day Final Fantasy title where you must explore the world, and use a variety of satisfying and deep combat mechanics to take down gargantuan beasts, and collect all those lovely rewards for your efforts when the job is done.

How is this like Palworld you ask? Well, if you’ve battled against an Alpha Pal in the wild, you’ll immediately see the similarities. These battles see you think methodically about team comps, items to bring along, and strategies to avoid being beaten to a pulp.

Sure the pieces of the puzzle are a little different, but the end goal is the same. Take down the huge beast before you. 

Just remember, if you do play this one. Don’t stop to throw a Pal Sphere, just keep hacking and slashin’! 

Best For Those Looking For Something Different – Monster Sanctuary 

Monster Sanctuary | Nintendo Switch download software | Games | Nintendo

Okay, so now we are going to pitch something that is similar but also quite different to Palworld, but hey, it’s always good to broaden our horizons. Monster Sanctuary is a creature tamer, much like Palworld, where you will explore the 2D setting, find cute and helpful creatures to battle with, and help you explore further. 

However, where this game switches it up when compared to Palworld is that this is a pretty traditional Medroidvania title, and your monsters are the key to progression. 

That being said, you still get to collect 101 monsters, build up your Sanctuary, and battle with your chosen party. So while it is a little different, there are plenty of familiar mechanics in place here for Palworld fans. 

As someone who loathes Metroidvanias, it’s one of the few I really like, so consider that an endorsement and give this a try.

Best For Exploration – Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

The Legend of Zelda™: Breath of the Wild for the Nintendo Switch™ home  gaming system and Wii U™ console – Official Site

I wanted to add in a game that represents the open-world exploration and traversal present in Palworld and there are loads of games I could have put in here like Genshin Impact or Fenyx: Immortals Rising, but I decided to go with the game that inspired all these games I would call Breath of the Wild-likes. 

While there are no creatures to tame, and very few things you could claim to be survival mechanics, when you play Palworld, you immediately see the similarities with BOTW. Whether that be the climbing mechanics, the gliding, or the shape and scale of the overworld. 

It should hardly come as a surprise as Pocket Pair’s most recent game before Palworld was an unashamed BOTW clone with survival mechanics called Craftopia.

I guess all that was missing to make it a smash hit was a whole bunch and legally distinct monsters to capture. 

BOTW is definitely more of an action RPG than a survival game, but the rewarding open-world exploration is what ties the two together. So if that’s what made Palworld so fun to you. Then BOTW should be your next game to take on. 

Best For Those Who Suck At Battles – Bugsnax 

Bugsnax Review: Delicious And Nutritious - GameSpot

Does anyone remember Pokemon Snap, a game that had you catch Pokemon through the power of photography? It was a blast, and there wasn’t a single battle to be had in that game. Well, as an alternative to Palworld, I want to put forward its spiritual successor Bugsnax, a game where you need to collect Food-Bug fusions. 

It sounds odd, and quite frankly it is, but provided you can roll with the zany nature of the characters, the world, and the storyline, I assure you, you’re in for a treat. 

Every Bugsnax is a puzzle in itself, and only through understanding their nature, movement, and unique traits, will you be able to figure out how to capture each one. So there’s a little more nuance to this than hitting a Chikipi with a Wooden Club before stuffing it in a Pal Sphere. 

Snaktooth Island is a joy to explore, there are loads of Bugsnax to add to your collection, and everything you catch looks good enough to eat. What’s not to love about that? 

Best For Creature Base Builders – Viva Piñata

Viva Piñata - YouTube

If you find yourself confused and asking ‘What the hell is this game’. Well, simply put, I feel sorry for you, because Viva Piñata was an absolute blast. 

For those unaware of this game, this was a 2000’s Garden Ranching Sim developed by Rare, which would have you create a hospitable living space, attract Piñata animals to your base, and use them to make the place bigger and better. 

It seems a little far removed from Palworld, but honestly, if you loved the base-building aspects of the game and want the fun and whimsy turned up to eleven, then Viva Piñata is everything you could ever ask for and more. 

It’s a hidden gem of years gone by, and with that comes the jank of being from a gaming generation gone by, but even still I would recommend that if you have an Xbox 360, you dig it out, dust it off and play this one, you will not regret it. 

Best For Creature Breeders – Pokemon: Infinite Fusion

What is Pokémon Infinite Fusion? - Dot Esports

Alright, so I know we usually work off a one-game-per-franchise rule, but considering that this is a fan-made Pokemon game not given the Nintendo seal of approval, I’m going to give myself a pass on this one. 

I was spoiled for choice with Pokemon ROM hacks to choose here, but of all those present in the wild I think that Pokemon Infinite Fusion is the closest to Palworld. Not only because it’s a traditional Pokemon game with all the typical trappings that come with that, but also because of the fusion mechanic.

For those who have put a good few hours into Palworld, you’ll know that you’ll only get so far with standard Pals, and breeding becomes a necessity. Meaning you’ll need to stock up on Cake, and breed a glorious Frankenstein’s monster to carry you in battle. 

Well, Infinite Fusion takes all the base Pokemon models across all modern generations, and then allows you to create up to 220,900 different Pokemon variations, which is just insane. 

So if you really got a kick out of Pal breeding, then Infinite Fusion is the one to try! 

Most Critically Acclaimed Alternative – Persona 5 Royal 

Steam Workshop::Persona 5 Royal

Then lastly, we have a game that may be as far removed from Palworld as we can possibly get without straying away from ‘close alternative’ territory, but Persona 5 Royal gets on this top ten based on its critical acclaim alone. 

In this game, you play as Joker of the Phantom Thieves, and along with your pals, will need to delve into Mind Palaces, rid the evil from people’s hearts, and save the world, all through the power of your Personas, this game’s much more mature answer to Pokemon. 

It’s a perfect blend of classic JRPG gameplay, and authentic life sim realness, with just a hint of creature taming and splicing thrown in there for good measure. 

It’s an incredibly stylish game with an excellent story, satisfying mechanics and so much depth. So even if you don’t think this game is for you, I would urge you to try it. It might surprise you. 

Honorable Mentions

The annoying thing about top tens is that you can only offer the absolute best of the best, meaning loads of ideas get left on the cutting room floor. But fear not, we have a list of the best of the rest, which you should look into if you exhaust all of the above: 

So Many Creatures, So Little Time…

So there you have it folks, 10 of the Best Games Like palworld that you should try out when you get a chance.

While I am hopeful that Palworld will continue to grow and become even more polished than it is today, I remain a little skeptical based on the developer’s track record.

So if you feel that way too, I hope this list serves you well, and as always, thanks for reading Indie Game Culture! 

Games Like Palworld

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