The Evo That Men Do

Well, another few days of having other life-stuff to do (not to mention other gaming-stuff to do – more later) has limited my footy gaming time.

How many times have I said that recently? Quite a lot. Does it mean that FIFA16 isn’t quite filling the PES-shaped hole in my life? Possibly.

And here’s more evidence – this goal, scored on Wednesday morning, is from… PES2014:

This goal is from the weird post-season friendly you get in PES2014’s Master League.

I played because it was in the PS3 disc drive when I powered up the PS3 to put the console through its monthly maintenance.

Those of us with old, unused PS3s or 360s should warm them up at least once a month, install updates, put the disc drive through its paces, etc.

PES2014 was in the drive. Yeah, I thought. Why not.

And I found PES2014 very FIFA16-like. Will I go back to play it some more between now and… is PES2017 really just four or five weeks away? Bloody hell.


NMS opening screen

No Man’s Sky arrived for me this week – above is the first screen I saw when the game started. There’s a thing on Reddit about taking this screenshot for the sake of comparing starting worlds. I got a lush green planet with strange doughnut-like rock formations. I’m still exploring it.

This game arrived at the worst possible time for me. I won’t get real time to play it until next week, maybe later.

I’ve played about 2 hours, achieved spaceflight, but yet to have a space-fight.

The game reminds me strongly of Minecraft in the exploring sense, but even more strongly of one of those Journey-type arty games where it’s all about the experience than the edge-of-the-seat twitch gameplay. My kind of game, in other words.

But like I said: two hours in, and barely done anything.

And so the traditional yearly PES Chronicle busman’s holiday goes on.

I have played more FIFA16. World Class is not treating me well. I cannot buy a result at the moment and have dropped out of the top 3. The teams above me are also conveniently losing and drawing games in the same way I am. League table scripting is alive and well in FIFA16.

I’ve also been noticing that I attempt to defend the Pro Evo way, which simply doesn’t work in FIAF16.

In Pro Evo, we defend by swarming the ball-carrier until we get the ball back. That’s it. We pretend that we stand off and cover the passing lanes and all that stuff, and we do (I do), but only some of the time. Maybe as little as 5% of the time. The other 95% of the time is all about clamping sprint+X+Square, and charging the ball, and kung-fu slide tackling, and let’s stop pretending different.

This Pro Evo-style ‘sprint-clamp-swarm-sliding defending’, as I must now call it, doesn’t work in FIFA16. Not enough to make it worth doing anyway, and it’s costing me. Because I keep trying to do it.


  1. I REALLY want No Man’s Sky but funds are a bit tight for £50 purchase. I could trade in PES 2016 for £9 though! Hmmm.

    There’s too much goodness in FIFA to give up on it yet so my plan is to try a recommendation I found to go up to Legendary with a minor slider tweak or drop back down to Pro with manual passing.

    I’ll let you know how I get on.

  2. NG – second Iron Maiden themed post title on the spin. Can’t wait for next year’s tour, taking my son for the first time. It’s a matter of life and death you know.

  3. I was about to say iron maiden, should have waited till 23.58 to post though…

    I’m in very real danger of being relegated in 2014. I ditched my superstar game as I was struggling and looking likely to drop out of the premier league and now on top player I find I’m struggling and possibly likely to drop out of the premier league. I’m 17th after 17 games. I’m findng it hard to beat even the lowly teams and every goal scoring channel has dried up. The difference is I’m actually enjoying this more as for all the wank fuckery I am making mistakes and can see I’ve abandoned the old philosophy of ‘none shall pass’, lured into an attack at all costs feeling by the likes of 2015 and 16.

    Nms looks really interesting but as I still have fallout 3 to even open I’m in the second hand camp.

  4. Lloyd – that’s 3 Iron Maiden post titles. Tut tut 🙂

  5. Shed – I’m going to have to compromise with FIFA16 too. World Class is justly infamous.

    As for No Man’s Sky, you will soon see a glut of trade-in copies as Cuntyfuckbollocks2001 (a typical ‘gamer tag’, I gather) realises it’s not Skyrim in Space and bounces off it. I’m not sure what it is yet either.

    Uncle Turf — you’ll baulk at this, but maybe try Professional. I stayed on that for many seasons before moving to Top Player with a good team.

  6. NG – just played two games and beat palace 6-2 and poor old Gateshead 2-1 thus easing my worries. Gateshead were pretty much the shell I left give or take an old Southampton player, castolis was everywhere, opened the scoring and I only got the winner with five mins to go. A clear sign of the AI playing well above its stats.

    One game to go before transfer window.

  7. NG – forgot about that one. That used to be my favourite album until Book of Souls.

  8. Turf – one nice thing about my ML world is that several old defaults have carved out a career in the top flight e.g. Gellazca a regular at Chievo Verona, the RB Feisserlein (sp?) at Torino, not to mention that Aakopberg (sp?) goal in my video. Always nice to see them again, although as you mention they play rather better than you might have remembered

    Obviously I take ‘southerner’ as a compliment

    thanks all for the laptop gaming advice, a Toshiba might be a good shout not-Greg, the screen quality seems better than HP/Dell/Lenovo and I always like to buy Japanese

  9. I was just thinking Lloyd, won’t it be far more difficult to win the Euros with (presumably) an average England team than to win trophies with your all-star ML team? What happens if you get knocked out, a season 26?

  10. Abbeyhill – I said to myself I wouldn’t celebrate against my old team but such was the importance of the win I let rip when the second went in.

    Followed it up with a comfortable win against man city (work that out?) I’m now not just well above relegation I’m only three points off Europe. Time to shop.

  11. good result Turf, Man City are incredible in PES2014. Obviously on all PESes you can get a run of very bad scripted games but usually it’s just a session, like 4 or 5 games. On 2014 it can be triple that. Last season I was hoping to challenge for the title again but started 8-0-7 and almost gave up. Then the scripting was turned off and 11 straight wins!

  12. I still hold to my view that PES2014 was/is the strangest football game we’ve ever had. You’re always guaranteed to see something peculiar. No such thing as a routine session.

    Lloyd – I’m not into music at all these days but I have fond memories of being an 18-yr-old Iron Maiden fan with long shaggy hair and all the t-shirts. 80s Maiden are ‘my’ Maiden. Book of Souls reminded me so much of that era. Expect more song-tastic punning post titles in the weeks to come. ‘Pun To The Hills’, though, is definitely not going to appear.

  13. Undoubtedly, whether it’s ‘heart’, momentum, the concept that football is difficult and passes are misplaced all the time, scripting, there’s no doubt that 2014 is the cuckoo in the nest.

    I shipped out a couple last night, schneiderlein and Rodriguez, failed to offload any more, and brought in five; Isco on a free, regens of zanetti, a striker called abreu and an amazingly high keeper called rogerio ceni (or similar). My only money signing was alexis Sanchez. Robbie Keane was an 85% regen but it would feel wrong. An ambitious bid for zlatan failed. I feel that’s where my hopes may founder, I don’t have a real top drawer goalscorer. As a lot of the well known ones are on their way down I’ll likely have to wait for them regenerating. No matter what the end of season brings I won’t leave Southampton after just a year.

  14. Abreu can be your top draw striker Turf, I have him too. Clumsy feet at first but a rapier left foot. Also worth swinging in a few high crosses now as he’s really good in the air

  15. Really? I got him for his height as Robinho, Sanchez, etc don’t offer that but his other stats looked a little clumsy aside from a high finishing level. Good to know ta.

  16. That saved me asking about the last posts title. I also didn’t recognise this as one’s as a song title, just assumed it was chosen as it was a well known Shakespearean quote. Can’t wait to see nG work Charlotte the Harlot into the next post’s title.

  17. Went to homebase last week to buy a brush to do the decking. They had one that looked the job in a box marked ‘patio brushes’ for 6.99 but there were others in the box so I asked the assistant if she could check the price was 6.99. “No, it’s actually 6.66” – “ah, the brush of the beast” says I….not a flicker….

  18. As a teenager I was a huge punk fan and collected all the badges and stuff. I came to realise towards the end of my teens that the punk scene was anything but being about individuality as the mowhekans, chains and leather gear was nothing more than a uniform. The sheep that break away will always find another herd to attach to. In Blackpool we have the punk festival. There is no sadder sign than middle aged punks in thier gear.

  19. In other news I had two games of my on and off career on PES 2011. A last minute winner against Liverpool took me to 11th.

  20. Darryl – Goths expressing their individuality by all dressing in black always used to make me chuckle.

  21. Uncle Turf — I can’t think of a great analogy for what PES2014 is in the family of football games. It’s a bit like the normal one in The Addams Family, but then that doesn’t capture its peculiar nature.

    Darryl — I’m thinking the same with tattoos these days. The amount of young people who approach me to admire their new tattoos. I have no criteria with which to evaluate how good or bad they are. It’s just another way of looking the same as everyone else, and where the body goes the mind follows.

    Chris99 – Goths I have met have this thing where they will explain that there are no true Goths but them. I used to be a heavy metal tribe member. Long hair, big leather belts, denim, the lot. I visibly recall a satisfying feeling of being part of a subculture.

  22. I’m wondering what it is you do that causes young people to display their body art to you….

    I’ve got a back covered in flowers and a couple of others but all can be hidden by a tshirt. I wonder at the people who get them so visibly if they ever consider one day it will have an impact, either when they fade, identify them when they want to remain anonymous or lose them something as someone judges them purely on their ink.

    Pes 2014 is the trip step they used to build into castle staircases. You think it simply follows on and is merely another level of the same height but then you fall on your face having completely misjudged it.

  23. I just don’t get the modern fascination with tattoos, especially sleeves. To me tattoos are something ex merchant seamen have.

  24. Uncle Turf/Chris99 – I work with a very pretty young woman, late twenties, who over the course of the last 6 months has progressively ‘sleeved’ herself with tattoos. She likes to show them to me to see what I think. I don’t think they’re horrible, but I think they’re a very bad idea when done to that extent. Her various boyfriends all have the same sort of tattooed arms. It’s just a thing now.

    I forgot to say earlier that people in general just don’t get jokes in the way you expect them to. They look at me in confusion and/or disgust if I try to dish out a quip. There’s not even any polite laughter on offer. They aren’t prepared for jokes in regular everyday speech. It’s a TV thing.

    I also forgot to post this yesterday – it’s me pissing about in No Man’s Sky, about half an hour in.

    This cliplet captures what I was saying about arty/Journey-style gameplay. The various discussion forums about NMS are in various shades of meltdown about too little to do apart from exploration for its own sake, and it being all single-player. The very slight, almost theoretical multiplayer component to NMS has yet to be demonstrated as working. The Internet is griping about ‘no multiplayer’. I’m still not far enough in to decide for myself about NMS, but I’ll say this: ‘we don’t need no stinkin’ multiplayer‘ is definitely a t-shirt I’ve got to have made.

  25. When I was 8 I used to have a pair of green flares with a triple button waistband. They were just the thing then. Unlike tattoos they weren’t permanent, and today I have the option of not wearing them.

  26. NG – I have been reading up on NMS as the only reason is I think the little one would love it as his latest obsession is planets. The general consensus is that it gets repetitive after a while as there is little interaction with the species you encounter and they all appear similar after a while. The more I read I think he would like it.

  27. I concur on sleeves, I think they’re just too of the moment for something permanent, the future will be littered with ageing grandparents having to explain why their blue splotchy arms where meant to be a ‘look’. Hence my staying within the confines of a tshirt.

    NMS looks stunning, like a nature documentary, but I’ve read that about the lack of activity and pretty rapid grind. I’ve never played minecraft so I can’t compare but is it possibly a prelude to all kinds of dlc? I’d actively aim not for any kind of multiplayer given the likelihood of some twat pulling some newly discovered fiddle to steal all your resources or the like but I would possibly worry that my legendary impatience would prompt a desire for weaponry and bombs.

    Two games last night with my new squad, another mauling by Chelsea and a great 2-2 with Liverpool. Having some really star names seems to add the key to unlocking defences as hazard and Suarez did two flick things I doubt I could recreate even if I pressed the right button at the right time.

  28. I’ve decided I’ll pick up NMS around the time FIFA hits. I suspect loads of copies will be traded in for that. The lack of frantic blast-em gameplay and online shenanigans certainly doesn’t put me off – I have Star Wars Battlefront for that!

    On Fifa 16, I did a little experimenting with Legacy last night and it does indeed seem to play better that World Class. Following a suggestion I found online, I dropped speed for both me and the AI to 45 and gave myself a little boost in acceleration and the AI a 65 rather than 50 pass error.

    By the end of the session I had dropped AI pass error to 53 and had just one digit up on my acceleration and it played very much like Pro but with the AI a lot more attacking. Still experimenting but I’ll not be fussing over sliders like I have in the past.

  29. Sounds very like my fifa14 experience – the existence of sliders is enough to spoil things as it means endless tinkering.

  30. Turf – Should we call you Uncle Claudio?

  31. Darryl/Shed – the NMS trade-ins will be cluttering up the preowned shelves as of tomorrow at your nearest games store. Today’s typical gamer will not take to it at all. Plenty of them were agog for it on the basis that it was some kind of Elite/Skyrim/Mass Effect hybrid. It’s more like a 1980s concept game (Tau Ceti anyone?) than any of those franchises. I’m engrossed by it. Darryl – your lad will need your guidance to start off with as the designers have made some rather eccentric interface decisions that will flummox even you. After that, it’s all exploring strange new worlds and seeking out new life forms. Maybe the new civilisations will come in future DLC.

  32. Uncle Turf – there’s lots of weaponry and bombs in NMS – there’s decent outer space combat. But the overall meditative pace of everything else would do your head in pretty quickly I think.

    Re. PES2014, it was when I got the star names/Super Regens and bumped my average OVR up a bit that the regular fireworks started, and the game became a bit of a Special One.

  33. Re. Sliders, I’ve always been against them for that very reason: they undermine confidence in the game. Dodgy session? Instead of coming back next time, grappling with the game and learning it, you end up fiddling with the sliders instead, seeking a permanent sweet spot that a good football game cannot have. Having said that, my FIFA16 experience has stalled on World Class. I think I will be using Shed’s suggested settings here and trying to resist the fiddle temptation.

  34. Really? I haven’t seen anyone mention the combat at all. I’ll see a mate of mine tonight who bought it on release so will get another summary but yes contemplation in gaming isn’t really my thing. I’m already itching to start a new skyrim as my steadily levelled wood elf got surprised by a sodding forsworn and glitched into a stupid death. 2014 is waiting to explode I feel, my team is on 86 overall now but only Sanchez seems capable of the individual tricks and I can’t pull off the standard right stick nonsense. The through ball nerf continues to annoy me, there’s no reason it’s so likely to fail.

  35. That’s an absurd comic-booky depiction of space, of course. Space is never bright and colourful in that way, not even close. The use of 1980s-style sci-fi synth mood-music is very effective throughout the game, though.

  36. Seen copies of NMS at £35 on eBay. Still holding off for now though.

  37. For some reason, that No Man’s Sky clip reminds me of the Buck Rogers game way back when on Megadrive! I Imagine it’s nothing like it but still.
    in other news, I just saw a video of two blokes playing PES2017 against each other and there were fouls. FOULS.

  38. Shed – I’ve yet to actually play NMS beyond the pseudo-tutorial that the opening 2 hours consists of. Today at some point, hopefully. Lot happening in life.

    #1 – there are always fouls in multiplayer. The game’s calibrated for the way they play. I’ve seen enough of the AI matches to know that PES2017 will be a no-fouls game once again. If they were to ‘give’ us fouls in single-player again, it’d mean calibrating the sensitivity threshold in such a way that the amount of fouls in multiplayer would skyrocket. Multiplayer is the core market now, so it will never happen. No-fouls is here to stay in PES and FIFA single-player. There’s a lot of forum blether about different refs having different levels of strictness, but even if that’s true (I’ve yet to see any evidence for it whatsoever) it’s likely to be the difference between 1-2 fouls per match and 2-3 per match.

    A litmus test of how degraded expectations have become in this arena appeared on the forums a week or two ago when the first AI gameplay vids appeared. Of course everyone noticed at once that there were no fouls, or so few as to make no difference. But nobody really talked about it or got outraged about it. No-fouls is the new normal.

  39. Mmm, that is very 80s, not even Star Trek like but full on fast n furious does space dogfights. I’ve obviously got the slightly wrong impression as I thought it was all peace, love and understanding. Were they instantly aggressive towards you or did you piss them off Civ style?

  40. Uncle Turf — that’s not my vid, it’s from IGN. It’s standard fare for the space-sections, though. My understanding is that the enemies are pirates, i.e. hostile no matter what. I really will play some more of this game later today, probably, and see for myself.

  41. Ah right, like the barbarians.

    For those right minded people, I’m now a level 16 Pokemon trainer and am seeing the supposed harder to catch bug.

  42. NG – thanks for that. NMS may be a future consideration as mini Darryl would be happy watching me play as he is obsessed with planets and also knows all the dearth planets at the age of four. I finished season 5 of my PES 2011 ML with a 10th place in the premereship for the second season running. The thing with 2011 is that you get loads of set pieces as it is like real football as there are lots of breaks of play and stoppages. It is about building momentum. A long ball will see a defender clear it out for a throw in and then you just build up the pressure. The game plays best on -2 speed and 15 mins length.

  43. Finally had a few more hours on No Man’s Sky. A brief 2-minute snippet of me leaving the ground, zapping a few asteroids, and approaching a moon. Can you spot what I named the moon’s planet? In NMS you name the galaxy as you explore it. The mellow pace and sound design also really, really makes me want to watch 2001: A Space Odyssey, Blade Runner, and Dark Star all in one go.

    I glory in the fact that there is so little to do except wander around amusing myself. No bristling compass of quest markers in this game, thank you very much. Places that might be of interest appear as icons – and disappear again if you pass out of range. No map. No journal. The game tells you very little about itself. A proper 80s throwback.

  44. “The greatest Dmf ever in the greatest football game ever” perhaps? By contrast I bought undead nightmare and max Payne 3 for small change today. I was reminded what a great game redemption was. All those quests…

    Nms looks like it really needs a Carl Sagan voiceover. For a brief second a few years ago I considered the pale blue dot quote as an addition to the flowers but it’s really quite a popular tattoo. I’ll stick to my roses, naked women and names of all the whalers I’ve served on.

  45. Nice euphemism Turf

    Only level 14 on Pokemon, need to catch up

  46. Uncle Turf — and I named that moon Vornander. I don’t like at all the way the planets and moons are all jostling so close together (and in each others’ skies). Nearly as bad as the glowing red backdrop. Gas clouds my arse. I’m a sci-fi snob and I even hate hearing explosions and seeing oxygen-rich fires in space. I’m going to explore all the other planets and moons here and name them after PES players before I leave. The name I give them is the name they’ll have forever in the 18-quintillion-star NMS universe.

  47. NG – about the no fouls thing. I haven’t seen any other videos but if your suspicions are correct then that is depressing as was the case last year. Especially since the gameplay is so good nowadays. Argh.

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