Finally, some relief from the twin time-sinks of work and life, and a chance to live as God intended me to live: just chillin’ in my yard, playing my Pro Evo.
A long session of 7 matches on Monday has moved me all the way through the mid-season Transfer window. And then some.
Suddenly, I’m in late April of Season 1.
The end of the season is in sight. Intriguingly, I might be within sniffing distance of the playoffs (if there are playoffs in PES2011’s D2; I really don’t remember).
Goal-scoring has been a major problem for me in PES2011. The nuPES methods of moving the ball forward and creating chances had become so baked into my muscle memory that I’m still even now only partially free of them.
I still revert to the awful, anti-PES, online-friendly, pinball-style approach.
Or I try to – PES2011 won’t really let me do it.
It takes the longest time to get used to the novel notion that players don’t have a universal great first touch. They can’t all spin in place, ballerina-style, without losing the ball. The kind of one-touch ‘ping-pong’ passing that nuPES has notoriously made feel normal, is largely missing from PES2011. You can still do it, but so rarely that they feel like special passages of play.
I’ve started creating the kinds of chances that are optimum in PES2011, and the goals have started to come. Not in a flood, but in enough of a trickle to keep me in mid-table and in touch with the leaders.
All of which was helped by a very active Transfer window. I shipped out a ton of the Defaults, without regret. I’ll be seeing more than enough of the Defaults throughout all my retro PES years to come.
I brought in some solid professionals.
I brought in the ageing Aduriz, in a rare case of reverse-influence across PES editions. We often get players whom we’ve had in past PESes. Here I am, getting a player in PES2011 that I had in a future PES. Aduriz was one of my star strikers in PES2017. Seeing him pop up in the List of Targets section was really a no-brainer.
31 years old, 79 OVR, and of course in decline, but I’m here to relish the world of Pro Evo, not to be some 1337_haXXor_Gam3r, or whatever the average online player calls himself.
The online gaming toxin that infected PES a few years ago now (probably around the time of PES2011, ironically) will never destroy the affection and regard that I hold for the series’ historical reality. No matter what happens (other than personal death or debilitating injury, of course) this timeless PES world will always be available to me.
Here is my full First XI and Squad for the second half of Season 1:
Yes, the Advanced Start has bought me a short-cut past the traditional Season 1 grind. That’s fine by me. I needed this non-grindy start to my past-PES adventure.
How are fouls? Intermittent – surprisingly many matches whizz past without any fouls, just like the very worst that nuPES has to offer. But most matches feature an acceptable 3 or 4, with some matches having many more. PES2011 is an honest football game that penalises both sides’ over-aggression, unlike all the PES games of recent years.
Still no great goals to report. I keep nearly scoring them, so they’re not too far away, I feel. I had forgotten just how seldom old-school PES dealt in spectacular goals. Rarity increases value. When one comes along, I believe I will emit a shriek.