Follow Me

Pro Evolution Soccer 2016 Review

Another year, another PES. This one marks the 20th anniversary of the series,  but the question is: is it any good? Last years saw a huge step up in the quality of the series and made some actual competition with it's rival, FIFA. Can they keep that momentum going?

Developer: PES Productions
Publisher: Konami
Format: Xbox One
Release Date: September 18th
Copy provided by the Publisher
Lets start with the actual gameplay. PES has always been a little tougher to get to grips with than FIFA and this year is no different for new comers. However once you have got the handle on it you can move the ball around the pitch with a fluidity unseen in past iterations of the game. Passing plays become a joy to do in the lead up to a goal scoring opportunity instead of a chore. This also makes the goals so much more satisfying as well and can create some genuinely exciting moments. However the goalkeepers seem to still be making some questionable decisions. Punching out a ball that they should easily be able to catch is not uncommon here.

Graphically PES doesn't seem all that great considering the technology available these days. However they are a huge step up from last years iteration so it is going in the right direction. It's really only the cutscenes, in the tunnel for example, that the graphics make you question what generation of system you are on. It's not up to scratch for what gamers expect in this day and age especially considering how much less a sports game has on the screen at once compared to other genres. The soundtrack in the menus is a little sparse as well. With only 13 tracks available you will start hearing them again sooner than you would like. There is a point where "We Will Rock You" starts to get a little stale.

The game modes on offer are plentiful. There is still the iconic Master League (what would PES be without it!), where you manage and play as your team and try and take them to the top. There is a similar mode called myClub which involves you using a custom team and trying to build it to be the best it can be. It's similar to the card games found in other sports titles, but it does have its own style. What players you get is still random but you send out scouts to find them instead of simply opening packs of cards. You also buy them one at a time. There are micro-transactions present in this mode, but from what I played it seems a lot more doable to obtain what you want without the endless grinding other sports games force you to do. They are there for the people who really want to make it quicker. This mode seems like it will be where most will spend their time as, from the few hours I played of it, I was hooked. The lure of getting a better player is a great way to keep someone playing.

Be A Legend also makes a return to the series, This mode puts you in the boots of one player instead of the whole team. This requires you to think about what you should be doing for the team and not be always looking for the goal. The mode offers variety from the standard format most are used to. The other game modes include various leagues and cups including the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League which are, once again, two of the few licensed things in the game.

Licensing has always been an issue with the PES series and this year is no different. It's just not the same playing as London FC instead of Chelsea or Merseyside Red instead of Liverpool. Unfortunately this is out of their control since EA has the licensing pretty securely locked up, but it still takes something away from the game. There is a handful of licensed teams however, like Barcelona, Manchester United and AC Milan. So here's hoping in later years Konami can secure the full roster.

The achievements/trophies on offer are a carbon copy from last year, so people would be forgiven that the game is a carbon copy as well. However that is not the case. The effort that could have gone into making a new list has gone into making a great football game and even though the tasks are the same, you will have more fun doing them!

At the end of the day the core mechanics of Pro Evolution Soccer are second to none and that really is what a football game is all about. The fluidity of the gameplay is such a joy to play with and makes for a really enjoyable experience. However the flair is what the game is missing, with some pretty rough graphics in places and still lacking in licenses. If you can look past those cosmetic problems then you are in for a treat of a game. PES Productions have made some really big steps in the last couple of years and hopefully they keep the momentum going!

+Fluid Gameplay
+myClub is addictive
+Variety in game modes
-Graphics seem a little rough in areas
-Still missing licenses

8/10 "Great"

What I Played: About 10 hours playing in various game modes and getting a little addicted to myClub.
previous article
Newer Post
next article
Older Post

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.



Email *

Message *