There’s a great new Default player in Master League 2012. Goes by the name of Irjescu. He’s a DMF/CMF—the kind of versatile everyman midfielder that PES has always specialised in. He’s got a great booming shot on him. His accuracy is laughable, but with proper development that can be cured. He’s one of my favourite Default players.
I’ve actually scored a few goals with Irjescu already in season 1. Each was a true net-busting 25-to-30-yard screamer.
Alas, the shots didn’t go where I was actually aiming. They were the kinds of goals that are making people quit PES2012 in disgust, I’m sorry to say. I won’t ever show a goal like that on here or celebrate it. When it happens in-game, anybody able to see my face would probably think I was eating a lemon.
Thankfully, in version 1.00 of the game at least, truly wonky shooting happens very seldom—and when it does happen, it’s mainly Irjescu.
So, here’s the latest news on my Irjescu:
It was a training injury. His return date is April 2013.
It’s a terrible blow, particularly as I’d trimmed my squad down to 23 players in the post-season period. Irjescu’s injury leaves me quite light.
Below is my current full squad, showing my preferred starting formation (this was before Irjescu’s injury):
That’s not my first-choice starting XI. Ahmet is my no. 1 keeper. The short-term injuries to El Moubarki and Cinalton have kept them out for a week or two. They’re both first choice players when fit.
Irjescu’s injury promoted a rethink. I have since rearranged the above formation to a 4-1-3-2 with one DMF, and Ettori occupying a central AMF role behind the front two. It also accommodates my two new boys, Sciacca and Ozturk, who are proving very useful. Shimizu is… a little guy who gets a game sometimes.
Here’s the table after 1 match of season 2—I’m playing on Regular, it has to be said. We should all stop marvelling at the fact we’re playing on lower difficulties now. The levels have been rebalanced. Top Player is no longer the same as it used to be, and no manly chest-hairs are acquired or bigger testicles grown through doggedly sticking to it. Professional and Regular are both perfectly fine places to be.
I’ve played a few matches after the above, and lost them all. I’m back down scraping the bottom. I show the above table in the expectation that it’s the highest-placed I’ll be all season. I do have some pride.
I cannot leave without a word about my current star player—Ordaz. I call him Awesome Ordaz this year. The Default strikers often flatter to deceive, but Ordaz has got it all this year. I also quite like Maqualao, whose novelty goal appears first in this clip:
The first goal is made by Maqualao’s first touch, which slightly bobbles the ball up into the air for him to strike with venom.
The second goal from Ordaz, a delicious R2 finish, was the goal that won me game #1 of this season 2, and gave me the briefest sniff of life near the top of the table.
I wrote the bulk of this post late last night (Sunday). This morning, Monday (natch), for no reason at all, I played some PES2010 (yes, PES2010—the one that everybody but me hated).
Then I played some FIFA12. Oh, FIFA12…. why did you have to go and exist…. Why, FIFA12, why?
It’s all left me with some food for thought.
Deep breath. I’m going to just come out and say it. I don’t think that PES2012 is a great game of football. There. I’ve said it.
PES2012 is more than adequate—it’s definitely not shit. But it’s not amazing, nor even very good. I invested so much in anticipating it through the summer that it’s hard for me to say I think PES2012 isn’t great, because by doing so I retrospectively make myself look a little foolish, and nobody goes out of their way to do that. But I’ll turn 40 next year, and one of the great side-effects of becoming OLD is that you care a lot less about such things. (Seriously, that side of ageing is great.)
There was another PES game in recent memory that wasn’t great… one that was only ‘more than adequate’… that game was PES2010. I played the absolute arse off that game, and rated it the highest of any next-gen PES game.
Why? Because of Master League. I played it for 20 seasons. I loved it so much I bought the fucking t-shirt. All inspired by a version of PES that was widely dismissed as a bad joke. I played it this morning, as I said, and the old magic is still there. PES2010 had a magic for me that was more than the sum of its clunky parts.
PES2010′s Master League brought in all the new features and depth. Features and depth that PES2012 has taken away.
So PES2012 never really had to be a superb game for me to potentially play it for ages and love it. The whole edifice of PES2012, for me, rests on its Master League. And I have a slightly queasy feeling about that. We’ll see how things unfold.