I finally picked up Peter Crouch from my Youths, after resolving a knotty salary problem. I had 50 million in the transfer funds, but a negative salary budget. As others have remarked, it’s a shame you can’t divert money from one pot into the other as you can in FIFA. Although I think I prefer it this way. It brings some old-school difficulty and proper consideration to Master League. The dear old mode has been dumbed down so much in recent years. So I was glad of the salary budget problem.
I got rid of a few high-salary players. It’s a sign of the times that I can’t recall their names, apart from one (see below). The salary squeeze was eased enough for me to be able to sign Crouch.
Crouch was a hero of PES2015, and is already showing his worth three editions later. Those long, spindly legs seem to get on the end of speculative balls that other strikers just can’t reach. Still only a Youth and still only 16, but I have high hopes for this incarnation of football’s national treasure.
Whilst browsing in the Youths and in the wider transfer market, I’ve come across quite a few instances of this:
Ugh. I’m assuming that last week’s Superpatch removed a few players for whatever reason.
But why do it this way? Why not just remove them completely? Why leave a ‘Player Removed’ ghost of their former presence? This is horrible to see and about as counter-immersive as it gets. Shades of PES3’s ‘Oranges009’. (In PES3 there was a problem with Dutch licenses which meant all their players were called ‘Oranges123’ etc.)
Thanks to regular commenter Paul for my all-new Season 4 kits. I was wowed by the Away kit at first sight, but after seeing the Gazza-era Lazio-style Home kit too, I have gone with the whole package, including the GK outfit. We are the only Sky Blues. Nobody else is.
I had a decent January transfer window, in which the following event just had to happen:
Veldwijk is gone. The hero of Seasons 2 and 3 faded badly towards the end of my promotion year, and did nothing this season in the Premier League. Even the in-game text says he’s past his best and should be moved on. So off he’s gone. How eerily reminiscent of last year’s F FRIDAY trajectory. Friday ended up returning multiple times, as he was a youngster, but I believe this is the last we will see of the 30-something Veldwijk. Unless I’m still playing when he Regens. That is entirely possible, despite all my moaning about the game.
I brought in a few bench-fillers and rejigged my formation to place Emre Can at the centre of everything. Baker and Can take turns being excellent.
I think I’ve discovered a way to mitigate the ‘churn’ effect and force PES2018 to behave more like a proper PES game than it often wants to.
Away to Man City yesterday, I feared a 4-0 thumping or similar. That’s what’s been happening every time I’ve played a big team this season so far. I have stuck with Superstar difficulty, by the way. It’s brutal.
Against Man City I put the ATT/DEF level down to level 2 (TWO) and left it there for the whole match. I literally did not touch that dial, no matter what.
I was happy to see my team sitting deep and not committing so many men forward. I had to play my part and be disciplined with player switching and not using secondary pressure much, or at all. PES2018’s ‘churn’ – that incessant attack/counter-attack rhythm – was effectively nullified.
The match ended 0-0, a superb result for me. I restricted Man City to something like 5 shots on goal, only 2 of them on-target. I even had a couple of chances to nick the win.
Normally I’d have gone up to level 4 (FOUR) on ATT/DEF immediately after kick-off and stayed there for most of the match – and then this fixture would have played out like the proverbial nuPES basketball-hockey game, with scoring chances for Man City in the high teens.
Instead the match was slower and more methodical, with purple patches of action in proper proportion. This is my preferred recipe for PES gaming.
I carried the Level 2 philosophy into my next match, at home to Leicester. Because we were at home and because it was Leicester I adjusted the ATT/DEF level dynamically according to the match scenario, but still favoured Level 2 for 70% of the time. Won it 1-0.
In the next match, away to Liverpool, it all went a bit wrong when I conceded early after losing concentration. I went chasing the match using high ATT/DEF levels, and took a proper Superstar thrashing, 3-0.
These matches were among the best I’ve played on PES2018. It was only one session, but we will see.
Here is the current table, in the first week of February of Season 4:
Comfortable lower-mid-table mediocrity. No danger of relegation, which I’m pleased about after playing 80% of the season on the almost impossible Superstar level.