The game has gone slightly bad again, but I won’t be restarting Master League again. It’s this career or bust for me now. There’s probably nothing else for me between now and the 2012 games’ demos in September.
The stumble and step-around animations are just part of PES2011 and something to which I should just resign myself, and I mostly do.
PES2011’s high AI pressure really does seem ridiculous to me. I try to cope with it by not hanging onto the ball for long, but however zippily I move the ball along, there’s a degradation of possession that seems to guarantee a ‘turnover’ eventually.
I’ve said so much about PES2011’s negatives in recent weeks and months that I’m tired of it myself. I’ll focus on the positives today. Because I am still playing the game, after all, and with a high degree of immersion and enjoyment to boot.
Lukaku is still a phenomenon for me, but in a different way nowadays. There are no more of Lukaku Mk I’s regular 25-yard howitzers that always made me smile, no matter how many times I scored them. Instead, Mk II’s something of an all-rounder, getting tap-ins and headers from corners, that kind of thing.
He’s the division’s top scorer, and by some distance, as can be seen from this screenshot:
That’s some pretty good going, and a few more goals than Lukaku Mk I had got me by this stage. I’m very happy with Mk II now. I’ll take the quantity of bread and butter goals he scores over the pretty-looking ones that Mk I was always banging in.
My overall league form has been going quite well. I’ve experienced a few defeats and draws that I shouldn’t have suffered from, thanks to suspicious late equalisers and winners from the CPU.
The scripting debate goes on and on. I’ve felt its heavy hand more than once recently. I’m a long-term believer that the game takes control of the flow of events—or more precisely, takes control away from you—at certain times.
There was this one really tough match against Shakhtar Donetsk. The AI pressurising seemed to be turned up to 11. I had to battle and scrap for everything. I battled and scrapped a 2-1 lead with a minute of ordinary time on the clock. The AI kicked off. I won’t describe how the ball then ended up in my net five seconds later. I’m being positive today.
I wasn’t too bothered. I’ve come to regard PES2011’s little ways with a degree of fond toleration that I probably shouldn’t. I should be fuming and spitting, but I can’t really be bothered these days. So there’s a football game where some funny business goes on occasionally. So what?
I’ve fought in plenty of other matches in which the AI hasn’t come back, and I’ve taken the points.
With 5 matches left of the season I’m in 4th place, and 4 points behind a promotion spot. I’ve kept pace for about ten matches with the top 3 without quite managing to catch them yet.
There are 5 matches left in the season. I’ll easily have played this season by Monday and will reveal all then. If PES2011 is anything like its predecessors, I bet I’ll go into the final match with a chance of clinching promotion.