It’s been a week since the PES 2013 announcement was made, and has given us plenty of time to take it in.
I’d like to run over my thoughts of each of the key concepts we’re being sold this year, with my take on how it may transpire.
Total Freedom of Control: This is centred around ball control, as opposed to player freedom of movement.
What does that mean? Simply put, if the Super Cancel controls are still in the game, then expect scripting to “aid” the man you’re controlling in-game. Therefore total freedom is limited to how you receive the ball, and what you initially do with it.
Dynamic First Touch: This feature as got me salivating at the possibilities should it be implemented in the manner I expect. This could make or break the game in my eyes. For too long football games have simply automated the most crucial aspect of the game. A key part of any player’s ability is first touch. Finally we’ll have a game where you are going to have to concentrate 100% on your game, as every pass must be brought under your spell before you can do anything. It’s going to take some getting used to, but it will suddenly make so much sense and you’ll wonder how you ever played football games without this fundamental concept.
Full Manual Passing and Shooting: I can’t say the current full manual passing system is enjoyable, although I only play on full manual passing with zero assistance. True manual passing would probably frustrate many of the more casual gamers, so there is some hand holding in there. But if they passing system matures this time round, and with shooting also benefitting from similar levels of control, this could be big.
Dribbling: The use of the R2 button to caress the ball, which builds on the Dynamic First Touch system, could revolutinise how you control and dribble in the game. All of a sudden keeping control of the ball will be the focus of your gameplay. Master this concept and you could set yourself apart from the masses. It will be interesting to see if there will be levels of control available ranging from fully manual with varying degrees of assistance available.
Full Manual One-Two: I thought this has already been implemented practically with the ability to control two players at once! I guess we’ll have to wait and see how this plays out in the game.
Response Defending: “Players can use R2 and X to slow down an attack, with a double-tap of the X button prompting a perfectly-time challenge.” This statement doesn’t sit well with me just now. Correct me if I’m wrong, but that to me says “double-tap X to successfully tackle every single time”. Unless a perfectly-timed challenge can yield a failed tackling attempt?? I’m sure the wording wasn’t quite meant like that, but I call them as I see them!
Something else which caught my attention was that this feature was spoken about with the PS3 control buttons. A clear sign that this game is not coming out on the 360. You heard it here first folks! (That was a poor attempt at humour in case someone responds back in a fit of rage at Konami or me!)
Goalkeepers: Finally a power bar for throwing the ball out. Whether this means that they’d had a complete overhaul with realistically responsive keepers, or are exactly the same, but with the power bar being the only addition, only time will tell. We pray it’s not the latter..
Player Individuality: Hasn’t this always been a hallmark of previous PES games? Even back on the PS1 with ISS Pro games, it was easy to spot star names by their appearance and their abilities. I guess they’ve been neglected a tad, and so will be more apparent. We’ll have to wait and see just how many players are afforded this star treatment to help distinguish them in the game.
Individuality to Goalkeepers: We should be expecting an overhaul for goalkeepers – it’s official. I hope this translates into unrecognisable gameplay from previous games. Goalkeepers have been pretty much the same for over a decade, so this will be a major boost to the game, if done right. It’s going to be an anxious time waiting to see how this works out.
Balance of Play: I guess this is the AI system maturing from last year. With fan feedback this should mean more focussed team play, with sharper player movement off the ball.
Tactical Precision: Again AI evolving is the message here – we’ll ahve to wait and see.
That just about covers it from my perspective, please leave respectful comments with your thoughts on my thoughts.
Please note I’ll be running a series of polls over the coming months to guage your feelings on key areas. I’d really appreciate your participation as it will feed into how I shape my articles in the coming months too.
Thanks for reading.