Temtem explained: Is this simply a Pokemon clone for PC and Xbox, or something more?

A game recently launched in early access on Steam that proudly wears its Pokemon influences on its sleeves. As a new addition to the creature catching and battling genre, TemTem's target audience is essentially the folks who grew up playing the beloved Pokemon franchise.

Today we'll be diving in to answer the simple question – What is TemTem?

Temtem at its core

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Anyone who's played a Pokemon game will immediately understand the overall flow and objective of TemTem. At its core, your mission is to catch and train as many TemTems (or Pokemon) as your heart desires in the hopes of conquering the 8 Dojos (or gyms) of the land and becoming the ultimate TemTem trainer.

Sounds pretty familiar, huh? In this regard, TemTem basically mirrors Pokemon to the letter, but there are a few key features that will appeal to even the most hardcore creature collecting fans.

A focus on duo battles and customization

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

One of the biggest differences between TemTem and Pokemon is the fact that all battles in the game are duo battles. This has been an option in the Pokemon series for quite some time, but never the core way to play. The focus on duo battles adds an immediately elevated level of strategy and difficulty to trainer encounters.

In addition to Pokemon's traditional type matchups, certain Temtem pairings will increase the power or reduce the stamina cost of moves. These new battle dynamics are a welcomed addition for more hardcore players that want a greater challenge than what the mainline Pokemon games have historically offered.

Temtem also offers many features Pokemon neglects, including player housing, deeper character customization, and more direct communication with the developer team.

Deeper online features

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On paper, Temtem is the Pokemon MMO Gamefreak never delivered. Similar to the Wild Area in Pokemon Sword & Shield, you will see players from all over the world out on their own adventures as you play, but unlike in Pokemon, you have a host of ways to interact with other players online. Battling, trading, and chatting is all dynamic and in real-time, as opposed to the flimsy friend codes and bespoke connections we're restricted to on Pokemon.

Another massive draw to this game is the fact that the entire campaign is fully co-op compatible. This means you and a friend can enjoy every aspect of this game together, including catching Temtems and battling TemTem leaders. This is a feature Pokemon fans have been asking for since 1998.

Can it really take on Pokemon?

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The recent launch of Temtem has been met with some serious from hardcore Pokemon fans who dismiss the title as a cheap Pokemon clone, but with strong sales numbers out of the gate and extreme server queues, it's clear that there is an audience looking for a more challenging Pokemon-like experience on non-Nintendo platforms, without drilling down into competitive Pokemon.

At the end of the day, Temtem is very much a Pokemon clone, but it also offers a host of features that long-time fans have been asking for. Currently, Temtem is only available on PC, but console launches are scheduled sometime within the year.

Is this something you'll end up checking out or are you actively playing? Let us know in the comment section below.

Miles Dompier

Miles Dompier is a Freelance Video Producer for Windows Central, focusing on video content for Windows Central Gaming. In addition to writing or producing news, reviews, and gaming guides, Miles delivers fun, community-focused videos for the Windows Central Gaming YouTube channel. Miles also hosts Xbox Chaturdays every Saturday, which serves as the Windows Central Gaming weekly podcast.