It seems I cannot quit signing this player. This is now the 5th time I have signed F FRIDAY in PES2017. He’s not that great anymore – in fact, he is positively average. But that’s exactly why I want him now.
Playing with lesser players for a lesser team has revitalised PES2017 in a way I never could have imagined without experiencing it for myself. PES2017 feels like a classic PS2-era PES much of the time. It really is astounding how House Rules – something I’ve always resisted – make the gameplay better. PES2017 must be played with average players to be experienced as a great game.
Friday’s not the only player who’s followed me to my new abode.
Like Friday, J RICE is in his 30s and in serious decline. He barely played for me in my last few seasons at Coventry.
Here are my current House Rules in total – very simple:
- No player in the squad rated above 80 OPR.
- Any player whose OPR hits 81 or above can still be picked but must be sold or released on Day 1 of the next transfer window.
- New signings must be either Youths or Veterans in decline (i.e. a Friday or a Rice).
These House Rules have produced a very interesting opening overture to my first Season in the French league.
I did not score a single goal in any of my opening matches. Not. One. Goal.
I went 3-0 down in my opening Champions League match – versus a rampant Manchester City. Then I did finally score a goal (my first as Saint Etienne) to make it 3-1 and give me faint hopes of a comeback. But I got a player sent off and ended up being properly pummelled 5-1.
The AI plays much better when you have lesser players yourself. As the table at the end of the post will show, the AI scores an average of 2 goals against me per match and is always dangerous. A lot better than the feeble showings it was putting in by the time I got my Coventry side up to Harlem Globetrotter-levels.
Players are slow and heavy and cumbersome in the turn. This means I get more fouls too (well, about 3 or 4 per match, which is lots by PES2017 standards).
This is how PES should be played, I think. Every match is a puzzle. How am I even going to create a chance?
I had a few players rated in the low 80s. They all had to go. The way I did it was very simple. I identified the players I wanted, and traded my high-rated players for those low-rated ones. Each trade was rated at 100% likelihood.
Which left me with this squad to take on a Ligue 1 and Champions League campaign this season:
I don’t really know many of the existing players yet, but I am getting there. Kyle Walker also followed me from Coventry. The way things are, he’ll be at or near 81 OPR by season’s end (maybe even by mid-season). He will be moved on when that time comes.
Look at the Team Spirit rating – 54. Shocking. But the matches are amongst the best I have played on PES2017, or on any PES in recent years. It strongly reminds me of the best of PES2014. The struggle and grind. It also reminds me of the golden seasons in the early stages of my Coventry City seasons in PES2017.
The league table after 4 matches:
I believe the shape of my summer has swum into focus.