It's that time of the year again, soccer fans, where the footballing seasons begin to grind to a halt and Arsenal F.C. disappoints its loyal fan-base for another year running. Albeit only slightly this season. Konami has revealed its plans for this year's iteration of the long running Pro Evolution Soccer series – PES 2017, and it's sounding like they're really pushing out the stops to finally end FIFA's reign as the Lord of Soccer Sims.
Releasing in Fall/Autumn of this year on all consoles, barring Nintendo's of course, PES 2017's ethos is the ability to "Control Reality", or so says the developers' official blurb. With this in mind, Konami have made some seriously juicy changes to the gameplay.
Sticking with FOX Engine, the same engine used to create [Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain](tag:2683985), the biggest talking point of PES 17's reveal is the game's new 'Precise Pass' system.
Combining Real Touch and real ball physics, passing is an art form in PES 2017. Many factors determine the speed and accuracy of the ball. The pass that is made on the best situation and timing will generate a perfect trajectory, creating a great satisfaction when a killer pass is made.
This is a model that has been kicking about in FIFA games for a while now, but with PES' usually sublime emphasis on slick interplay between your team, we can expect this to work better than FIFA 16's passing system which felt way to sluggish to be that accurate a representation of the beautiful game. Especially seeing as they completely nerfed through balls, which is 99% of my game gone. So maybe I'm just being biased.
PES 17's other new features include:
- 'Real Touch' which will attempt to authentically replicate the various ways a player receives and controls the ball. So expect Messi to have Velcro-lined boots. Also, this addition should work wonders with the 'Precise Pass' system.
'Adaptive AI' is a series first, and a first for all football games. The game will actively learn the way you play and react to your team behavior, which is both awesome and terrifying in equal abandon. The days when a game rage quits halfway through an 8-0 drubbing are finally upon us!
- And 'Total Team Control' and 'Advanced Instructions' are bringing even tighter control of your troops to the game. The former allows you to "instantly change the attacking and defending mentality of the team", whilst the latter allows you to refine your team's ideology by switching between styles like intense pressing and 'tiki-taka', and confuse your opponents and, hopefully, the game's AI.
If PES 16 was anything to go by, the seminal soccer series is getting stronger and stronger by the year, so I, for one, have high expectations for PES 17. Hail to the King, baby!
What do you think?
PES or FIFA: what's your flavor?