Snowmageddon in parts of the UK meant I had to work extra over the weekend and the start of the week, wiping out much of my free gaming time.
So since last week I have only managed to play 3 matches in my Master League on PES2018.
I lost all 3 matches.
I can’t account for what happened. The matches were not all in one session, otherwise I would put it down to simple session variance – that old, old feature of PES that is so strangely overlooked in much of the to-and-fro debate about the series.
I lost all 3 quite badly, too.
I took the lead in one, and was pegged back to lose it 1-2. Then I lost 0-1. Then I lost 0-3. All against ‘lesser’ opposition, which admittedly doesn’t mean much in nuPES, but it’s still embarrassing.
The mini-run of doom plunged me down to the wrong end of the table:
It’s only November in my Season 5, and it’s only 9 matches into a long old season, so I am not worried at all at the moment. I still have more or less the same calibre of squad that finished mid-table last season. I’ll do the same again this season, I am confident. (Famous last words.)
Master League was always about incremental growth and struggle, so this is very welcome evidence of the old spirit still prevailing.
But I still want things to change. I want to get up there and win the league at the very least, and for this to happen within two more seasons. That’s my target.
So, this season will be about more, er, consolidation, or whatever football fans like to call it.
Next season, Season 6, I want to be my top-six season – i.e. that first season where you mount a vague sort of challenge, but still fall well short.
Season 7 will be my first serious tilt at the title. The couple of seasons after that will see me trying for the elusive Treble.
Such is my long-term plan here. All of which should easily see me through to the end of January. Which isn’t too far away, remember. (And then not long after: ‘PES2019: The King Is Back!’)
This week I’m expecting delivery of a new PC that might take up quite a bit of time that I would otherwise have spent on PES2018. If it wasn’t for the snow, I might already have it, but as things stand it is due for delivery Thursday.
A big part of the reason for getting the PC is being able to play PES2018 modded. I particularly mean modded gameplay – all the cosmetic mods (pitches, stadia, camera angles et al) are nice, but they are not my primary interest. Not even my secondary interest, to be honest.
I still have yet to see any actual evidence that any gameplay mods exist for the PC version of PES2018. There are plenty of Option File-type fiddlings with team styles and the like, but these could barely be called gameplay changes – and are often very subjective, to put it politely. I remain convinced that all those switches and levers we’re given to play with are mostly placebo buttons.
In the PC version of PES2018, core gameplay remains untouched by modders from what I can tell. If you post a link in the comments to an alleged ‘gameplay mod’, there’s a better-than-evens chance it’ll be a mass-Edit of tactics. These don’t change the core gameplay. The same urgent basketball-style back-and-forth rhythm that is so characteristic of nuPES is still very much intact.
But I’m not too far away from being able to run the rule over them for myself. PES2018 will continue on the PS4, of course, while I play with my new toy mostly in private. It’ll be early spring before any move to the PC version takes place.