Review – Temtem: Pokémon is celebrating its 25th birthday next year and that will certainly not go unnoticed. The well-known games have appeared exclusively on Nintendo consoles / handhelds for years and are still extremely popular. In all those years there have been many attempts to release a similar game on other consoles and even mobile devices, but that was not a great success. Can the game Temtem change this?
|Release date||January 21, 2020|
|Genre||Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game|
|Platforms||Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X and Series S|
When developer Crema collected money via Kickstarter a few years ago for a new creature catch game and already released some images, expectations were high. Especially the promise that the game would also appear on console next to PC was a good reason to support the project. Meanwhile, the game is still in the Early Access phase and new additions are still being worked on. Now that the game has also appeared on one of the next-gen consoles, namely the PlayStation 5, it seemed a good time to see if it can compete with the long-standing success of Pokémon.
It is not entirely illogical that we make the comparison with one of Nintendo’s best-known games. Temtem contains a lot of elements that are (in) directly an exact copy of Pokémon. Nothing is more fun than catching, training and collecting creatures that can look cute and tough at the same time. Temtem naturally contains elements that ensure that the game manages to leave its own mark within the genre, but the countless similarities with Pokémon are undeniable.
These similarities immediately become apparent at the start of the game and the start of your adventure. Here too you start in a small, cozy village and you have to visit the laboratory of the local professor to make a choice between three Temtem with which you want to go on an adventure. It feels somewhat familiar and confidential, but could have distinguished itself a bit more with its own story.
You yourself start out as a brand new Temtem tamer whose goal is to beat the various gyms on the six floating islands of the Airborne Archipelago. On your adventure, however, you will be confronted by the evil organization, Clan Belsoto, whose goal is to take the islands by force. Does this scenario also sound familiar to you? Good news, because there are more similarities to come.
The world you travel in also has undeniable similarities with the Pokémon games. You can only find Temtem by walking through the tall grass and if you choose to catch a Temtem, you have to weaken it first to make it easier. Fortunately, catching these creatures does not happen in a ball, but by means of a kind of virtual card in which you lock up the creatures. (YuGiOh meets Pokémon)
Certain villages in the world of Temtem have a Temporium where you can heal your Temtem. Have you caught more than six Temtem? Then they are automatically sent to a storage space in the Temporium that you can also use to put together your team. In the same building there is also a small shop where you can buy useful items to continue your adventure.
Fortunately, there are also elements that distinguish Temtem from Pokémon. Every fight is automatically a double fight, although the same rules do not always apply to the opponent with only one Temtem. You even get a second creature to fight with from the same professor who gave you your first Temtem. Double fights mean that you have to play more tactically and that is still a lack in Pokémon games.
In addition, the difficulty of this game is a lot higher. You notice that from the start when your Temtem barely survives three fights against wild Temtem. By leveling it becomes a lot easier every time to survive multiple battles, but as you continue in the story you will notice that there is a lot of technique and strategy involved.
Obviously, there are over 100 new creatures to get to know, and that creates somewhat the same feeling as just getting to know the 151 Pokémon in Red / Blue / Yellow. Again you have to learn which types a certain Temtem has to determine which attack is just effective against your opponent. Super effective attacks are also available here, but you cannot miss an attack or deliver a critical hit.
Temtem also contains quests and side quests that are indicated by an exclamation point or a question mark and can be found in a side bar on the right side of your screen. These range from solving puzzles to collecting a certain amount of items and are great as a snack to keep you entertained.
Not unimportant is the presence of online co-op. You can play the game with a partner by your side to go through the story together or you can compete against each other in an online PvP battle. The game also includes an online chat window where you can talk to people from all over the world and make deals to trade or just become friends. Moreover, the game is cross platform, so you can play together with someone on PC on the PS5.
The game is made in the Unity engine and that makes everything look very colorful. The cartoon-like style reminds us of the most recently released Pokémon games, although Temtem looks just that little bit better. The game runs extremely well on the PlayStation 5 and loading times are almost non-existent. Occasionally you will come across an unfinished building in the game that is supposedly still “under construction”, but that is not entirely illogical since the game is actually still in an Early Access phase.
The world of Temtem contains a lot of nice creatures that, like the world itself, all look beautiful. The similarities with Pokémon are undeniable, but the higher level of difficulty and the double fights ensure, in addition to a few other factors, that the game still stands out. The fact that you can run around the world with a partner through online co-op is a strong plus.
Positives of Temtem
- Higher difficulty
- Beautiful environments
- Side Quests
- Online co-op
Negatives of Temtem
- Well-known story