Pro Evolution Soccer 2010

Posted on 13 April 2010 by Fahad Majidi

Over the last year it’s become fashionable to knock the once untouchable Pro Evo. In forums across the globe fans bemoaned PES 2009’s lack of licenses, its slowdown, its bananas defensive Al, its ‘cheese’ tactics, and the slideyness of its players. And while, to varying extents, they’re all legitimate complaints, what the boo boys often wont tell you is that they play the game all the time, and that despite the flaws it is a brilliant football game.

Now its even better, having fixed the flaws that caused such a stir a year ago. New PES is improved across the board after a summer of tinkering to make Roy Keane Proud. Slowdown has been eliminated, making every match super smooth. The success rate of cheese tactics – like drawing the keeper and cutting the ball square to unmarked forward who rolls it into an empty net has been reduced. Players feel robust and no longer slide around the field as if towed by an invisible rope. And while it still cant complete with FIFA 10 when it comes to official teams and kits, PES has snagged the Champions League License, and included its deepest ever edit mode.

As a result this feels like the near perfect next-gen PES we have been waiting for. Shooting, already well implemented last time out has been tweaked to make everything more delicate: half-filing the power bar more often than not sees the ball zip over, while more shots from crazy angles go wide. At first this is frustrating, but if you then go back to last year’s game you immediately realize it’s much improved. Wide free kicks from 30-40 yards out have also been fixed, so you can actually whip across in and have players attack them instead of watching the ball harmlessly sail into the hands of the keeper.

There’s no denying that this is last year’s PES with ton of refinements and improvements, but there’s also no denying that’s a very good thing indeed. Its clear Konami has a worried eye on the competition. Nowhere is this more evident than the new Become A Legend mode, clearly (cough) “inspired” by the Be A Pro-mode EA introduced in the FIFA 10. You create a player and embark on a career playing as him and him only, starting out as a precocious 17-year-old at the Superbly named FC Babilayna. After a trial game you field offers from three teams and sign for whichever you like the sound of.

I started out at Wearside (Sunderland) where it quickly become clear that you truly have to earn your Legend Status. That means spending much of your first season toiling in the reserves, playing against the first team and trying to get noticed. You can skip these games but doing so means you only get the bare minimum improvements to your stats, which increase with experience in the same way as players do in Master League. (You can weight development across six areas: kicking, dribbling, balance, power, speed and stamina).

Initially, having to spend every week playing meaningless matches against the same players is tedious like watching Charlton. But stay with it and it means that after a couple of seasons – by which time I’d negotiated a bigger contract with Espanyol – you get a much greater sense that you have earned your spot in the team that you would from just walking straight into the senior side. Your first goal is a magic feeling, your first international cap four seasons down the line truly special.

The mode isn’t without its flaws, though. One is the perspective during matches: the game adopts a roaming, behind the player cam similar to that of FIFA’s Be A Pro. Problem is in PES it has a tendency to lurch around as if the cameraman has had one too many pre-match livener. You can combat this by switching to a default PES View we prefer Wide, obviously – but then you can only ever seen a third of the pitch at any one time, which is hardly ideal.

This needs looking at next year, but a bigger challenge for Konami will be adding s sense that you’re immersed in the real world. Become A Legend is fun, but you are always aware that you’re in change of a fictional player in a fictional league. In FIFA’s Be A Pro have the choice of being thousands of real players, in real league, and as a result there’s no competition as to which is superior.

All of which leads to the two most important questions of all. Namely, what’s stopping us giving PES10/10? And – of course –is it better than FIFA 10? The first is an easy one to answer. There are just too many major quibbles – like the fact that Master League has barely changed in half a decade (this backs run out of position to chase down a winger, but it’s something PES must Fix).

The second question is tougher. For years PES was the realistic, sim-focused football game, while FIFA was the casual, quicker-paced rival. Now the tables have turned FIFA 10 feels like the better representation of actual football, while PES is more fun, accessible game. And the end result is a score draw. For the first time in over a decade – since the FIFA/Sensible Soccer Mega Drive era, in fact – the fans have two outstanding and, crucially, very different, football titles to choose from. It’ll be very interesting to see which plays best online, but for now whichever side you support, you can’t lose.

2 Comments For This Post

  1. Blue Digital Camera Says:

    I’m really excited about the Premier League this year. World Cup was fun, but the Premier League is so much more fun to follow. Just wish it wasn’t so difficult to follow in the States. It’s getting better though. :)

  2. Cristina Emeru Says:

    Thanks nice article my friend

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