Is there an alternative to Pokémon? I tried Temtem, my verdict!

Is there an alternative to Pokémon?  I tried Temtem, my verdict!

You are probably a lot of Pokemon fans wondering if Temtem could please you. Imagine me too, and that’s why I tested for you the start of the Cream title, finally passed in version 1.0 this week, so I could assess the quality of this alternative to one of my favorite franchises.

As the Spanish studio Crema was preparing to switch its production to version 1.0, the question “Would Temtem be worth trying?” it came naturally. If this is a title that didn’t pique my curiosity at first glance, it must be admitted that it was difficult not to be tempted by a Pokémon-like with a massive appearance. Between alleged pastiches and dubious clones, Games similar to the Game Freak franchise are legion, but few make it to the top. More hyped and with a very serious following for almost 3 years, Temtem is attracting more attention: What if the true groundbreaking experience for Pokémon fans was elsewhere?

A story of perspective

This article is an opinion piece, it is by nature subjective. The author’s opinion is personal and not representative of that of the rest of the JV staff. If you want a more complete description of the possibilities offered by Temtem in the context of a review, we invite you to consult friend Kaaraj’s Temtem test written in 2020 and based on the early access of the game.

Summary

  • Can we do (much) better than Pokémon?
  • Smooth, HD Pokémon, a dream come true
  • It’s not Pokémon who wants…

Can we do (much) better than Pokémon?

My Pokémon experience is a bit out of the ordinary: I didn’t grow up with the license like millions of players, having somewhat stupidly neglected it on the basis of not always astute prejudice, before trying his hand at Pokémon Sword/Shield in late 2019 and discover a true addiction to complete the Pokédex, further enhanced with a Pokémon Legends: Arceus that kept me busy for nearly 200 hours this year (and which I love despite its dated finish). If I’m what we call a “new fan”, I took the time to play old titles, including new versions, and immerse yourself in the fascinating universe designed by Satoshi Tajiri and Ken Sugimori to the point of awaiting the release of Pokémon Scarlet/Purple with feverish anticipation.

Pokémon vs Temtem: a choice as delicate as the headline?

Is there an alternative to Pokémon?  I tried Temtem, my verdict!

However, many of the license’s inherent flaws can only make me sad as a veteran gamer: while I can appreciate Celeste’s graphical minimalism as much as Horizon: Forbidden West’s photorealistic 4K, The technical weakness of the Pokémon games always somewhat tarnishes the experience they offer. Anchored in technical standards from another time, we regularly wonder what the franchise would look like if it were developed by the teams behind The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild or Super Mario Odyssey…or even by studios with even greater means if The Pokémon Company it was opened to other manufacturers. The question would arise not only about the realization aspect, but also about its online component, Nintendo being known for a certain reticence at this level, and a netcode that is far from exemplary.

In short, on these two points, Temtem may offer a highly improved “Pokémon-like” experience on paper, first of all because of its availability on all platforms (the Nintendo Switch of course, but also and above all the PC and the “next gen” consoles PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series), as well as its MMO aspect, imposing certain standards on games in line!

Smooth, HD Pokémon, a dream come true

Is there an alternative to Pokémon?  I tried Temtem, my verdict!

In general, Temtem takes us to familiar terrain, but with many improvements.

To free myself from the Nintendo hybrid console to experience the joys of a “Pokémon-style” video game with fewer technical limitations, it’s in a steam version that I embarked in the wild lands of Deniz, island where the adventure of my avatar begins. This is the opportunity, from the first moment, to face a much more complete character editor than in any of Game Freak’s games, and with much more inclusive options along the way. Certainly, we are not in an RPG with countless options, but it is clear that Cream puts the small dishes in the big ones and wants us to identify as best as possible with the character embodied. We are far from the very low amount of combinations that Pokémon offers!

Avatar customization is quite rich in options (in any case, many more than in a Pokémon).

Is there an alternative to Pokémon?  I tried Temtem, my verdict!

The first few gameplay sequences are meant to be extremely familiar to anyone who has ever played the world’s highest grossing franchise episodes (hey, I’m not saying that!). You play as an apprentice and your first objective is to find the master, answering here on behalf of Konstantinos, which will make you choose your first Temtem from three options. Then you face your rival, although this time the fight differs from the ordinary as it seems impossible to win it, your opponent with a Temtem that is too strong. We hope to learn a bit more the hard way, but the professor quickly balances our chances by providing a second creature with superior abilities. This is where the adventure really begins, and that we can enjoy the joys of exploration, fighting other characters (or players)… and hunting wild Temtem!

The two points I was most looking forward to Temtem in the turn reassured me from the first moments: without necessarily having a dazzling art direction (Cream’s game offers a “mobile game” style, whether we like it or not), its fluidity is extremely pleasant and promotes quite lively movements on the map. It also brings a certain dynamism to the fights, whose turn-based mechanics is similar in all respects to that of its model. On PC in any case (and it seems likely that Microsoft and Sony consoles will play on the same court), the experience is pleasant, since the game is reactive, and armored with options in a frankly ergonomic menu in which we like to evolve. . Therefore, it is obvious that by clinging to Temtem, we will have a lot of fun managing your creatures, your inventory, navigating the map but also access the many online features… like chatting with other players, as we remember, Temtem is a true MMO, what is its main difference from Pokémon, which has very limited (and often frustrating) online features.

If the lack of a true MMO dimension frustrates you in Pokémon, you can find your account in Temtem.

Is there an alternative to Pokémon?  I tried Temtem, my verdict!

It’s not Pokémon who wants…

Where the shoe squeezes is that Temtem is still a dumb and petty clone of his model. His bet is clearly to offer an experience based on similar bases in all aspects (capture of wild creatures, turn-based combat, table-type system, meeting of trainers, etc.) but considerably improving what sticks most about Game Freak: the aspect online multiplayer and finish level. First of all, on the online side, the creation of Cream fines any of its competitors: intended as a true MMO, Temtem is rich in possibilities and much less restrained and conservative than a production signed by The Pokémon Company. Having not been able to see what it looks like on Switch, I remain skeptical about the possibility of enjoying the same freedom of sharing (and the same network quality) with other players on Nintendo’s hybrid console. . Still, as a “pokéfan”, we really want this integrated chat. (accessible both in “global”, therefore in English, and in the language of our region) that allows to propose exchanges and fights, which unfortunately we do not expect to find a second in two months in the 9th generation episode. Something like 60fps, by the way.

In fact, it is time to conclude on the question of form. let’s be clear, on a purely technical level, Temtem buries any Switch episode of Pokémon. It’s pretty painful to revive a Shiny Diamond/Shiny Pearl Pokemon (since this remake isn’t shiny or pearl) after spending an hour on this very solid competitor when it comes to comparing it to a classic top view from the episode. The fluidity is a joy to watch, and while the aesthetic, as already mentioned, sounds very “mobile game”, the clearly higher resolution gives the impression of a visually much neater title overall, in any case, much less “slime” than the always difficult to accept the representation of a Pokémon in 2022. However, Temtem’s game phases remain limited to a fixed camera angle, which makes it impossible to compare it to the excellent Pokémon Legends: Arceus, which I like to consider the ugliest game I’ve ever enjoyed playing.

Temtem offers better graphics than Pokémon… but its art direction won’t appeal to everyone.

Is there an alternative to Pokémon?  I tried Temtem, my verdict!

Still, Temtem’s main flaw lies in its global identity. The overall style lacks character, and Just because the overall resolution is higher doesn’t mean the models will easily compete with Pokémon. Trainers fundamentally lack charisma, and are generally content to rather stupidly copy Game Freak’s already rather cartoonish standards. Certainly, it is especially on the creature side that we look forward to Temtem in turn, but so far, almost none have the charm of the famous “pocket monsters” whose secret their creators have. This observation alone pretty much sums up my general feeling: Temtem does everything like Pokémon, prettier and perhaps even more complete, but without the personality that will inevitably have trouble finding itself, for lack of being able to really innovate the concept that have. he is “satisfied” to control in appearance.

In conclusion, and while players who stick to the Temtem style will have a solid lifespan in store, I make no secret that I still want to venture more into Paldea’s side next November. While I’ll always complain about the arguably ubiquitous 30fps, clipping, and aliasing, and miss Temtem’s inherently superior online features, I’ve clearly become just another pokéfan. On the other hand, if Pokemon is only moderately your cup of tea and/or if you’re really tired of its failings to the point of not wanting to make any more concessions, you might find your happiness on Deniz’s side, because Temtem is still arguably the best of the bunch. available alternatives.

#alternative #Pokémon #Temtem #verdict

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