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The best Pals to catch early in Palworld

 Palworld best Pals - Three Pals looking over the player.
Palworld best Pals - Three Pals looking over the player.

Picking a selection of the best Pals in Palworld is a trial-and-error process, especially early on when you're first building your base and have no clue as to how you can exploit each cute creature you find. Your first goal should be achieving self-sufficiency; creating a place where Pals work to produce materials, create enough food to eat, and ideally don't get disgruntled due to sanity loss.

You'll also want a strong squad of combat Pals to help you capture more fearsome creatures, and overcome the tower-based boss battles where you face opposing Pal trainers. Though there's a massive selection to choose from, there are definitely some early standout Pals in terms of Partner Skills, and how handy they are in getting your base up and running to produce resources.

Lamball

Palworld best Pals - Lamball
Palworld best Pals - Lamball
  • Good all-rounder for your base

  • Produces Wool in its spare time once you build a Ranch

This is the first Pal that the game directs you to catch as part of the tutorial, but honestly, Lamballs are fantastic all-rounders for your base. They may be lacklustre in combat, but their combined traits of handiwork, transporting, and farming lets them complete lots of odd jobs. They can collect and store materials that other Pals create, build new structures, craft at workbenches, and once you unlock the Ranch, they'll spend their spare time producing Wool—a material required for early armour repairs that's a bit annoying to gather otherwise.

Cattiva

Palworld best Pals - Cattiva
Palworld best Pals - Cattiva
  • Your go-to mining Pal

  • Harvests grown fruit from your Berry Plantations

This catlike Pal is another you encounter early, but it's useful to grab since its mining trait lets it smash up rocks so other Pals can collect the stone and store it. Once you build the Stone Pit, you'll have an unlimited source where you can put your Cattiva to work. Stone might not seem super valuable initially, but after you unlock the Crusher, you can convert stone into the Paldium Fragments you need to craft Pal Spheres and all sorts of other useful items.

Similar to Lamball, handiwork and transporting traits also let Cattiva collect and store materials, and since they have gathering, they can harvest grown Red Berries from Berry Plantations.

Pengullet

Palworld best Pals - Pengullet
Palworld best Pals - Pengullet
  • Waters Berry Plantations and works the Crusher

  • Also a good all-rounder

My personal favourite early Pal to grab is Pengullet, primarily because this lil penguin is the first Pal you're likely to encounter with the all-important watering trait. This allows it to water Berry Plantations—a key step in making your base food self-sufficient. It also works the Crusher to turn stone into Paldium Fragments. Add to that its handiwork and transporting traits, and you have both a vital addition to your base and a good all-round helper. It's no slouch for base defence either with its Ice Missile projectile attack.

Daedream

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Palworld best Pals - Daedream
Palworld best Pals - Daedream

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Palworld best Pals - Daedream's Necklace
Palworld best Pals - Daedream's Necklace
  • Has an incredible Partner Skill for early combat

If you want to make early combat in Palworld a breeze, your best bet is a Dark-type team, and at the centre of that, Daedream. This Pal can only be found at nighttime, but it's incredibly strong because of its Partner Skill. Once you catch a Daedream and reach level eight, you can unlock the Daedream's Necklace in the Technology tab to craft at the Pal Gear Workbench. It's pretty cheap, too.

The only material that might give you trouble is Leather, which you can get by killing the purple, antlered Eikthyrdeer. Once crafted, any Daedreams in your party will float behind you invulnerable and follow up your attacks with theirs, meaning you can stack multiple at once to barrage enemies.

Hoocrates

Palworld best Pals - Hoocrates
Palworld best Pals - Hoocrates
  • Great leader for a Dark-type focused combat squad

This owlish Pal is another that can only be found at night, but it's the cherry on top of a Dark-type focused squad, especially if you have four Daedreams floating behind you. Hoocrates' Partner Skill buffs the damage of Dark-type Pals in your party, making them a perfect combo for your Daedreams. They also have a powerful array of their own attacks.

Foxparks

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Palworld best Pals - Foxparks
Palworld best Pals - Foxparks

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Palworld best Pals - Foxparks Harness
Palworld best Pals - Foxparks Harness
  • Uses the Primitive Furnace to create Ingots

  • Partner Skill turns it into a flamethrower

While building up your base, Ingots will become a pretty important material, but you can't make them without building a Primitive Furnace and finding a Pal with kindling. Enter Foxparks. This fiery fox can't do much else for your base except kindling, but once you reach level six, you can unlock the Foxparks' Harness in the Technology tab to craft at the Pal Gear Workbench. Similar to Lifmunk's SMG, activating Foxparks Partner Skill when summoned will let you use them as a flamethrower in combat.

Lifmunk

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Palworld best Pals - Lifmunk
Palworld best Pals - Lifmunk

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Palworld best Pals - Lifmunk SMG
Palworld best Pals - Lifmunk SMG
  • Chops down trees in the Logging Site

  • Plants and gathers from Berry Plantations

  • Has a hilarious Partner Skill

While Gumoss is the obvious pick as an early planting Pal for your Berry Plantations, they don't do anything else. Lifmunk, on the other hand, can both plant and gather from Berry Plantations, plus chop down trees and produce wood once you build a Logging Site. This Pal can also help at workbenches and even produce drugs once you construct a Medieval Medicine Workbench. Last but not least, at level 11 you can unlock and craft an SMG for them, which they'll fire while perched comfortably on top of your head.

Eikthyrdeer

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Palworld best Pals - Eikthyrdeer
Palworld best Pals - Eikthyrdeer

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Palworld best Pals - Eikthyrdeer Saddle
Palworld best Pals - Eikthyrdeer Saddle
  • Excels at chopping down trees in the Logging Site

  • A strong first mount

These purple deer Pals are excellent at chopping down trees, but they're also one of the first potential mounts you can get in Palworld. Once you capture one and reach level 12, you can unlock the Eikthyrdeer Saddle in the Technology tab, and craft it at the Pal Gear Workbench. It is quite expensive—the material that'll likely give you the most trouble are Ingots, since you'll need to mine ore, build a Primitive Furnace, and find a Pal with the kindling trait like Foxparks to operate it.

However, once crafted, you simply have to summon Eikthydeer and hold F to hop on. Since you inherit Eikthyrdeer's attacks when mounted, it can be pretty fearsome in combat.

Teafant

Palworld best Pals - Teafant
Palworld best Pals - Teafant
  • The first Pal you'll find who provides healing

This teapot shaped-elephant really doesn't have much to recommend it base-wise, since the only skill it provides is watering. However, Teafant has one unique quality that makes it very valuable early on; healing. If you summon Teafant and hold F, you'll activate the Soothing Shower skill, which replenishes your HP—perfect if you find yourself struggling in a boss fight and need to stay alive.

Tanzee

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Palworld best Pals - Tanzee
Palworld best Pals - Tanzee

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Palworld best Pals - Tanzee's Assault Rifle
Palworld best Pals - Tanzee's Assault Rifle
  • Another all-rounder who can chop wood, gather, or plant

  • Can also use an assault rifle

Tanzee is a little similar to Lifmunk; it's a handy all-rounder Pal for your base that can chop wood at the Logging Site, gather wheat or red berries from plantations, and even plant new crops so they can be watered. Tanzee even has an advantage over Lifmunk in that it has transporting, so can pick up and carry resources to place them in storage. After you craft Tanzee's Assault Rifle, this little chimp's Partner Skill means it can also let loose on enemies with a gun, making it a decent early game combat choice.

Flambelle

Palworld best Pals - Flambelle
Palworld best Pals - Flambelle

While Foxparks is likely the first kindling Pal you'll come across, it's not long after that you'll find Flambelle. This Pal is pretty useful, producing Flame Organs for crafting at the Ranch, but can also help out with kindling, transporting and handiwork tasks. Perhaps the best thing about Flambelle is that catching or killing them drops the usually hard-to-find late game item, High Quality Pal Oil, which is used to make guns and produce polymer.

Celaray

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Palworld best Pals - Celaray
Palworld best Pals - Celaray

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Palworld best Pals - Celaray's Gloves
Palworld best Pals - Celaray's Gloves
  • An improvement over your regular glider

While Celaray might not have much to recommend it for your base other than its watering ability, its Partner Skill lets you use it as a superior glider. You'll first have to research Celaray's Gloves at level seven and craft them at the Pal Gear Workbench, but once acquired, you can summon this Pal and activate its skill to drift longer distances. This is perfect for exploration and traversal, especially if you don't have a flying mount yet.