Last time we saw Pinkie Paradise pick up her first Temtem and venture out in the big world. She caught a few new friends and went to study at a town with a weird squigly in the name. As she had and still has no idea how to make a squiggly c , we shall just name this town Brical de Mar… just imagine the squiggly. In the first leg of the journey we just made it there so let’s see what adventures await her in this episode…
Taking on sidequests
I made plenty of progress with my Temtem and was already getting to know the battle system when suddenly a few question marks showed up on my map. Temtem unlike it’s big inspiration has an active main quest and plenty of side quests. Yet first we had to meet the professor. This time he was accompanied by Sophia. She was beautiful, her skin coloured like chocolate milk…. well more like a gentle serving of nesquik in a glass.Her hair long and waving starting as a sort of fading anthracite colour…like garden furniture that has been left in the sun for to long flowing over into a deep cyan.. with the intensity of printing press ink that had just exploded in her hair.
Her clothes looked like a lovely breezy jacket that looks really hard to put on.. because this bra-like mini top is part of it’s design so I guess you pull it over your head like a shirt.. but the shape doesn’t really cooperate. She must spend a lot of time getting ready. She wears one of those aladdin belts.. you know what I mean those cloth band belt things that are very shiny and smooth. She also wears some across her arms so she accessories very well. She tells me I can visit her in Arissola, temtem tamers take on dojo’s to proof their worth and get rewards from it to further their journey! She also tells me I should study at the school first…. *la sigh*
So it’s back to school with me, but what is this.. a guy lost the key to his locker… well gotta help him find his key first! The poor thing! So even though the school bell just rang I do the noble thing and start to help him first. Through a few quick dialogues with people I find out he dropped the key at the Temporium… that’s like a pokecenter…but…there is no nurse just a heal computer where you can do it yourself…. that’s about all the differences.
I bring the key back and get some junk items. Higher up in the school I found the head mistress, who thinks two boys are skipping school. She asks me if I can go find them… so I head out and find those students. It quickly turns out I need a surfboard to find them which I can find out in the next town…so I decide to skip school. to get a surfboard to find these boys . It’s amazing how real this game feels!
Having left the town, heading north I quickly got into some more interesting Tem-battles then before. I noticed that even if my temtem had quite a few levels on my opponent I simply was unable to oneshot them. Even killing them in two hits proved a challenge with my starter moves. The two versus two battle system of temtem doesn’t make this any easier. I am completely unable to avoid all damage on my temtem.
My super effective moves are not able to oneshot and because I have a fairly diverse party so it’s not that uncommon that something I have gets hit super effective as well. Three battles down the road my Temtem are not looking healthy. So I head back to the Temporium to heal them up and walk over to the guy who has a store in the place of healing to buy some balm’s to heal my temtem and some antidotes and stuff. After getting to the store.. I decide not to buy any at all and just get some temcards. Those items are EXPENSIVE! Besides I already beat six trainers ( you fight them in pairs) how long can the road to the next town really be?!
Temtem is a lot more difficult than pokémon. While battles themselves aren’t THAT challenging, being a Temtem trainer is. You want to level up your tems so want to make sure everyone gets a turn.. but that means taking hits. You’ll want a team as full as possible because even a few levels ahead killing temtem in one hit rarely happens or you’ll run out of stamina before you can do that to all. Temtem is very much about managing your team. Limiting the damage you get and maximising your experience gains wherever possible.
Running away from random battles I also found a bit harder than in Pokémon. Normally you will lead with the two temtem you want to level the most. Those can’t run as easily.. and failing means two free hits from your opponent. So I figured I best just soldier it out, fight my heart out run back to the temporium and little by little make progress. Of course I could just ask a friend to travel with me… but I don’t have any friends yet! While it does sound really grindy.. and in a way it also is.. I really like the challenge. It gives you a chance to experiment with several Temtem and since this is an MMO you could have expected some grinding.
Showing my Sass
I catch a Ganki , a air and electric type Tem to help me deal with all the air type temtem I find on this route! Plus the first Dojo is claimed to use air and water temtem so I need an ace! I realise however that Ganki by now is almost 16 levels behind so I do need to grind a bit. I head back to the squiggly c town and head back to the school. Maybe I missed something. One teacher asks my name and I tell him “My Name is Inigo Montoya, you killed my father, prepare to die” . He looks at me like I am an idiot and continues to tell me stuff about Temtem.. like synergy attacks!
Some moves of temtem have a little plus icon at their name, if you put a temtem of the right element next to it, it will gain a boosted effect. For example if a Temtem of the same type is next some moves will raise in attack powers. If you put a toxic type next to the water type.. water moves might inflict poison. Such a nice idea and it makes having doubles of a type or certain team strategies compilations more interesting.
Soon after that I head back and Fight Sara and Lara twins who can;t figure out of them who is Sara and who is Lara… so I claim to be Sara instead.. which triggers the fight. I win so I guess I am Sara now! It’s hilarious to find all these dialogue options.
When facing a Temtem trainer you can steer talks the way you want them, either for a quick battle or to find some hidden dialogue. Some are amazingly geeky fun. Like that one where I mimic the princess diaries.. or later on where a guy keeps talking about a thing hidden under a truck on a deserted island. There is plenty of references to be found towards how much they are like Pokémon. For example there is a temtem naimed Saipat in this game. It’s a duck.. who fights with sais.. A Sai Duck! Unlike Psyduck .. who much to the fans dismay never got the psychic typing that makes part of his name.. the Sai .. of Sai pat is taken into it’s typing. It’s a dual fighting and water type. That’s pretty cheeky humor by the monkey’s at Crema. To add insult to injury they also gave Saipat an ability that allows it to use toxic type moves as if it was it’s typing.
The main character can make fun of dialogue tropes and can even recognise the game is still in early access, stating that it is weird that so many buildings are closed. I encountered a guy who thought he was better than me because he was from the city and I got the option to respect him or make fun of him! Even after battle I got the option to kick him when he is down! That is great it makes battling so much more fun! However this one comes with a downside! Dialogue is missable! Where in pokémon you can loop a conversation endlessly, once you chosen to commit to a certain line of dialogue here that is it. After that they will only ask you to leave or stay for dinner, which you never get. So careful you might sass yourself away from a juicy piece of gossip or lore! Not that I care.. I never finished school anyway some ignorance is to be expected.
Shopping for clothes
After a fair while I finally made it to the town of Arissola , I am ready to fight that first Dojo now! My temtem are all about level 20 ish now. Yet the Dojo Leader sophia seems to have vanished after visiting the wind fortress. Which lies past the gifted bridges a long route filled with Temtem trainers. “Ah I see, more training required huh” message received! My body is ready! So I start to prepare for my new leg of the journey. I pretend to be a tour guide, lying about my knowledge of the region.. luckily I loved dialogue so I actually KNOW what to pick! That’s kind of clever. I found these facts trough random dialogue and thinking logically about places I visited before.
People travel across this world like you do , to either see the sights or further their science. You can tell by their clothes or their temtem if people are from different areas which is kind of neat. There is a very vivid form of world building in these towns and the continents and trough side quests the game gently asks you to explore more. Sometimes you’ll have to catch a very rare spawning temtem, or find a specific chain of npc’s sometimes on description only. It sounds very simple but Pokémon always kind of lacked this.. it’s just random people everywhere without a connection.. here we see pop idols.. and people worshipping her, a ferryman and it’s passengers, a perfume seller and her material suppliers. There is is a bigger connection random people know each other.. the world is more alive…… omg there is a clothing store in Arissola!
Temtem has a lot of customisation options, plenty towns hold clothing stores which all have very unique items based on the region and local styles. You can buy dye sets to recolour your clothes in the ways you want as well which is like a big heart eyes emoji from me! I love gear systems like these and since your temtem trainer only wears vanity gear you can do what you want without jumping through numerous hoops. Heart Eyes Emoji Heart Eyes Emoji Heart Eyes Emoji! However the gear is incredibly expensive and I have not found a way to find easy money yet! If you know good ways to make money in Temtem let me know!
Because shopping always makes me a happy Pinkie! While I did not make a lot of progress with Temtem in this leg of the journey I again really like that I can take it slow, there is some stuff to explore, there is a lot of fun stuff to try and there is plenty temtem to catch. Temtem do not level up a a certain level but after gaining certain levels so I have to spend a lot of time with all of them. With my eyes on the first dojo and my goal and the wind fortress I know my journey is only just beginning and I am sure it will only get better.