The Veldwijker 3

I have scored my first proper long-range goal in this PES2018 Master league. In fact, it’s my first proper PES2018 long-ranger, full-stop. I don’t recall scoring one quite like this in my pre-ML Exhibition and Tournament warmups:

BOOM. The scorer there is my new big man up front, one LARS VELDWIJK. This was one of the goals from a stunning debut hat-trick against Millwall. (Naturally, the nuPES nerf meant he did sod-all for a few matches after.)

He’s this year’s F FRIDAY, it already seems, and just like last year’s big man, I picked VELDWIJK up from the Dutch league.

I looked up the pronunciation (isn’t the Internet a marvel?). I’m going to go with the most common UK version. Veld-witchk. The second syllable is close enough to ‘witch’, with a hard K at the end.

Over the years, people often ask me what buttons I press to score these goals. I press the shoot button. That’s it. Goals like this come along if you try them often enough. This must have been my 100th attempt, at least, to bag a long-ranger in this ML. This attempt was the first one that didn’t either whistle wide or land in the keeper’s gloves. Persistence and the shoot button are the only real ingredients of getting a PES long-ranger.

It’s nice just to belt one in from 30 yards every so often. The long-range goal is football gaming’s equivalent of the explosive headshot in an FPS.

Back at the worktable of my ML, my pre-PES2018 mutterings about House Rules are on hold for now. I have filled my boots with new players in the transfer market. I have a huge, versatile squad. I will see where this road leads me in PES2018.

There is my full Season 2 squad, on the right here.

J CORREA got the star signing cutscene.

Veldwijk has been the star so far – 5 goals in 9 games.

Puncheon and Baker are promoted Youths.

Besic was my most expensive signing from Everton at £9m.

Cris is on-loan somewhere and shouldn’t be in this picture.

F Grillo is one of my most important signings – an LB who can deputise as a CB when required.

Cumulative stamina takes its toll this year, I’m finding, so a squad this size feels pretty much required.

I’ll be dumping Arcas and Castledine as soon as I can. Both players are shockingly anonymous for me this year.

Canning and Erikson and Candemir and the other Default dross can go ASAP too. I have no attachment to them, no sentiment.

These were the promoted/relegated sides:

Hmmm. If I can find a bookmaker to put a few quid on those sides being the real-life promoted/relegated sides come next May, I might take it. Only a quid or two, though. The accumulated odds for all 6 outcomes would be very favourable, especially with Palace’s start making them seen near-certs for the drop.

The first three games of the season were tight, tense affairs – the best football gaming that PES has to offer. Then the results started coming. Veldwijk won a couple of games on his own. At the time of writing I’ve just completed a session where I lost badly a couple of times – once to newly-relegated Huddersfield, who rightly seem better than the average D2 opponent – which all leaves me like this after 9 matches of the new season:

Veldwijk is a star already. It’s not just the long-ranger. It’s all-round play. Small, nippy strikers in nuPES are far too common and samey. I’m talking about the tiresome CF/SS/AMF hybrids, who might as well all be the same player. Much more interesting to play with big, lumbering men up front who can’t play anywhere else. I wonder what a Veldwijk-Friday partnership would be like? Probably rubbish, in a Gerrard-Lampard kind of way, but I’d like to see. So I have cheekily popped back into the transfer screens and laid down a marker for the great man:

No chance of signing him yet, but the time will come.

PES2018 is simmering along nicely. No, this isn’t anything like the Master Leagues we enjoyed in the Golden and Silver Ages of the series. But it’s very decent nonetheless.

If the fouls aren’t fixed, PES2018 will never be a classic edition of the series.

But when was the last true PES classic? By true classic, I mean a PES game that was popularly-acclaimed as being so, rather than a ‘personal’ classic. Thus, my precious patched PES2014 – definitely a personal classic – doesn’t really count.

By this strict criteria, the last popularly-acclaimed PES classic would have to be PES2012 or PES2013. Both of those had enough dissenting voices that we might even have to go back to PES2011 for the last classic PES.

There have certainly been no classics in the series since the current generation of consoles came along. PES2015 comes the closest, but even that was and is by no means popularly acclaimed.

PES2018, I feel, is unlikely to reach classic status (but you never know).

A PES doesn’t have to be a popularly acclaimed classic to be worth the time and effort. Most PES games in history haven’t been widely-acclaimed classics, let us remember. PES3, PES5, PES6, and PES2011 – that might be it on the popular classic front, and at least two of those choices are debatable.

I can almost hear the voices: ‘I’d say PES2 was a classic…’ So would I, but the question is about popular acclaim, not personal affection.

So I’m putting aside notions of whether my experience with PES2018 is or isn’t ‘classic’, and just playing it and enjoying it.

Updated: 13th October 2017 — 11:09


  1. Doesn’t bode well if an information agency is misplacing potential candidates files.

    Have you played PES18 at all Turf?

    This is my instance of PES15 running on Mac/PC with the PTE Patch and SweetFX mod

  2. Some strong signings in January – I see 2015 as the year the wheels fell off recruitment as well – and I appear to be back on track, four points off the promotion spots. In how many MLs prior to 2015 could your season two side feature Buffon, Heinze, distin, sissoko, bresciano, payet, totti, Toni, Kane and cisse.

    I haven’t played full game 2018 Paul, just the demo. I’m not sure I will play 2018 before it hits a tenner in cex, it’s definitely the worst year (bar 2014) for chronicles contributor feedback. None of the usual early weeks love and a lot of dissatisfaction with konami. I’m sure the claim was for an overhaul of the ml, sounds like another crock.

    Btw I didn’t mention ‘an information agency’, cowley would have been upset at that term.

  3. Who says football games these days have no fouls?

    If you can’t beat em suplex em from FifaCareers

    Honestly I couldn’t stop laughing when I saw this…

  4. Look at this…….
    In what world is this not a foul??? in fact should have been 2 penalties, one for the kick round the back of the legs and one for the smack in the face…….
    This is the shit that needs patching ASAP.

  5. That sort of thing might be funny to people playing their mates but its the kind of nonsense that ends the single player game. All the time spent building a squad, creating tactics, keeping focused on the game and then that load of bollocks. Cue Adam sticking his fingers in his ears, and singing ‘la la la not listening’. If it happened in a fps – blokes springing back up after a bullet to the forehead and the like – there’d be forum meltdown.

    I’m more surprised at Fifa though.

  6. Uncle Turf – I believe the official Konami view is ‘some people like it like that’. Multiplayers love the fun and frolics of such boisterous rumble-tumble gameplay, but as you say, it’s death for the single-player game. It’s a mighty tree that’s been toppling for years now. Cf. your PES2015 Season 2 squad.

    I suppose the equivalent of what they’ve done with no-fouls footy gameplay would be to remove the reload mechanic/animation in FPS games (has that ever happened?), to speed things up and make things fast and fun. Of course that removes a whole layer of strategic gameplay and any sense of planning and caution, but from the point of view of giving ‘millennials’ what they say they want, job done. There’s a 17-year-old FIFA player started in my office who’s genuinely never heard of PES. No-fouls fun-and-flow in PES is intended to tempt him over – but how will it do that when both games are the same? (The 17-year-old also had a lifelong belief that he was born in the first year of the 21st Century. I soon put him right on that.)

    Paul – had a couple of near-copies of that incident last night. Things have got to the point where too many matches feel indistinguishable from PES2016 and PES2017.

    JS Hutt – nice find, and as ever in forums I love the way it’s just not taken seriously by most contributors there.

  7. NG – if that had happened every other match, it wouldnt have been as bad in a weird way, because it would have been ‘the norm’ but I was having a really good session, 5 matches, 4 defeats and a draw, hadnt won for 10 matches, seriously needed a win, was 1-0 down in that match in the clip above, set to all out attack, it was late on, possibly even 88th min or later, that was one chance id fashioned all game, then that happened, blatant cheating.

    As Turf said, all the tactical patience, focusing, etc was for nothing as the game punished me by unfair means.

    I tweeted that clip to officialPES and Adam, had many re-tweets and replies from people saying they get the same and how crap it is,m obviously not even a squeak from Adam or officialPES.

    They may be working on a patch, which may or may not even address the fouls, but when I’ve shelled out my hard earned 50 quid for the game, I don’t expect to have to wait months to see if it then becomes playable.

  8. NG – cuff the lad’s ear and send him out to get ‘the long stand’ or tartan paint.

    Tbh it’s only the rank cheating of 2015 that’s keeping me involved. Had I been able to assemble that good a squad in year two with a fair match up of abilities I’d be blowing through games 9 or 10 nil. Honestly, some of the sides in French league two are one star, 50ish averages. Fabulous presentation, appalling standard.

  9. Paul – it is the norm for me, challenges like that don’t get called even outside the box. I’ve had a few matches every now and then with a decent amount of fouls. But one shooting-range FK per 15 matches is about the average for me, which is a disgrace. Did I imagine that David ‘free kicks’ Beckham became associated with this game?

    Uncle Turf – as ever, it’s the collective belief-flavoured resistance to the Truth that interests me more than anything. I divulged the info about him having actually been born in the last year of the 20th Century, within earshot of several other people who were quick to pipe up in support of the outright, demonstrable falsehood that 2000 was the first year of the 21st century. Majority view wins in such circumstances. Similar thing happens with the ‘child abductors cutting a child’s hair in the supermarket toilet’ urban myth. Because there are more people saying ‘but that really happened!’ than not, the majority view is the official truth. It all makes you ask: what else is believed only because most people believe it? Everything?

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