The Last Word on Castolo

Season 1 has ended. Castolo has retired. That’s him above, strolling around on the pitch after the final match. He wasn’t even playing in the match, and he wasn’t on the bench either, but he still showed up to take his retirement applause. I cannot recall a single good moment from Castolo all season – and he did play most of the opening third of it. Nope, I won’t miss the overrated Myth one bit.

One of my mid-season Youth signings, Pelaez, has been a revelation in the closing parts of the season – as was Shimizu. Both are automatic first-choices. I’m wondering if the Advanced Start also triggered something under the hood that made these two youngsters better than they ‘should’ be.

I finished 10th in the end. The final table:

I did my best with the photo editor there, but really, PES2011’s lighting is to blame. You can just about see that I scored 36 goals, and conceded 36 goals. I lost as many matches as I won.

A mediocre season, then, but oddly, I had a couple of players in the Team of the Season:

Palmieri I can understand, at a stretch, but Iaquinta? He scored about 10 goals, all in all. The qualifying factor must be the overall average of his post-match ratings, which were always good. Iaquinta was one of my ‘cheat’ players that I got thanks to the Advanced Start.

PES2011 is slightly annoying me in a number of ways.

First annoyance: the COM AI is really not up to much. We’ve had much better AIs in every edition since, in terms of aggression and, yes, the occasional (or frequent) feeling of unfairness. PES2011’s immediate successor, PES2012, and of course PES2018, both featured the kinds of AIs that beggared belief at times.

Second annoyance: many of the players on the AI teams have names like PLAYER and TRANSFER, which not even I can manage to overlook. I should get into my Option File and perform some in-flight surgery. I probably won’t, though.

Other than the above gripes, the PES-ness of PES2011 is unimpeachable. The way the players move and react continues to startle and impress me. What a football game we’d have today if they’d only stuck with this vision. Granted, not many kids would be playing it.

I still haven’t scored a great goal in PES2011. This vexes me, as one of the principal joys of footy gaming in general, and PES in particular, is scoring the occasional goal that plasters a massive grin on your face. The kind of goal you remember years later. I’ve mentioned it before, but I can still remember one particular goal I scored with Michael Owenn in ISS98.

In lieu of a memorable goal, here’s one that is fairly typical of the 36 I scored all season long:

That’s a missed shot right at the start. See how lamely wide it goes. That’s player stats and context at work, there, classic PES-style.

Ximelez retrieves the ball and send the cross over. Shimizu… handballs it back across goal, where Aduriz is the Johnnie-on-the-spot to score from 1 yard out. Seriously, 95% of my goals are like this. No wonder, really, that the bigwigs at Konami decided to go the more arcade-friendly route.

Here’s another old friend from PES2011’s Master League – the post-season Void:

I have to laboriously go through every single one of the above weeks, one after the other. There’s no skipping weeks allowed. I disable Autosave for the duration, of course, but that only makes a 20-minute operation into a 10-minute one. It’s still aggravating.

In summary, then, after Season 1: the classic PES feel of PES2011 is wondrous, and feels even more severe and sim-like than I was expecting. The Option File I’m using is an absolute dog. And Castolo is a cunt.

Updated: 19th April 2018 — 18:10


  1. Haha that last paragraph !!!!!!

    Plenty more seasons left in PES 11 then?

    I’m ploughing on with my British only PES 18 New ML, its a chore, all my players bar 1 or 2 new signings are shit !
    As I’m playing a super league setup, most times in the league are all very good, my avg player OVR is about 58, and Team Spirit is 44 at its best, its a slog, reminiscent of the old PES days, which is a good think, but demoralising not winning.

    I’m having to employ the ‘defend fort my life, try to snatch a draw or 1-0’ tactic, which is mostly failing, in my last match I was 1-0 up against Sampdoria after a nice glancing header from a corner, that was in the 70th min, but still went on to lose 2-1.

    My fear is that there aren’t enough middling British players that i will be able to sign, who can better my team, and I can’t afford or attract the big British names, so will float in a state of limbo.

  2. PES 2011 is still going strong for me as I got my opening 6 games of season 3 in this morning. Won 3, Drawn 1 and Lost 2 which is a better start and am in 6th.

    I am currently sat in the market place in Preston and am at a loss. I have the day off and am meeting a mate at 3.00pm. I got into town at 12pm as we had a meeting at the little one’s school this morning and the wife was driving back to Preston. Once upon a time I would have been happy tottering around the games and book shops, have a pint and nip to the bookies. Not any more as the town (or city) is an Alien place to me. I can barely stand being in a game shop for more than 2 mins. As for the bookies there is no real races on till later on as the virtual racing takes over everything. The two fatty veg samosas are sitting heavy in my belly. I would happily go back home.

  3. Darryl – I often find myself in Preston an hour or two early for a campus meeting. Nine times out of ten I end up back at the campus in a corner reading a novel. The other one is when I use the bog in the Harris museum and maybe stay for a coffee. This isn’t just Preston, although it doesn’t encourage lingering, its most places now, I have less than fuck all of interest to do.

    Castolo channelling his inner John terry. What a twat.

  4. Bit shocked at the language there n-G. Poor Castolo. My memory for past PES is poor but I’m sure I remember him being a decent player once. Or was that Castello? Same player?

    On the PES 2011 AI front, I do fear this is going to be something we notice on returning to old PES. Still, 36 goals against is not bad despite your fledgling side. How would you compare the PES 5 opposition AI to this and PES 2018?

    I’ve not played any PES all week but aim to get few games in over the weekend – if only to avoid the hot weather. I’m not a hot weather fan but while I usually get into it during the summer, this sudden heat wave, weather bomb, Sally sunshine or whatever they call weather now has got me agitated.

  5. Shed, the sunshine is glorious, I took a day off yesterday and spent all day in the garden in the 28 degree sunshine painting the garden fence, one of those jobs you severely underestimate and once started you wish you hadn’t. 4 bloody hours, i have all kinds of sun marks and lines.
    We get so much crap weather here in this country, the 2 days of April warm weather is more than welcome.

  6. It’s 16 degrees in Gateshead. 16! I despise the way the media ignores the regional variations in this country and assumes everyone lives in London like them. It’s a pleasant April day, no more, no less.

    Pictures of Paul in his speedos covered in creosote will be up on the site later…

  7. Paul – Nothing in your glorious sunny day story has sold hot weather to me. That all sounds utterly miserable.

  8. It was interspersed with lunch in a beer garden in the sun with a pint of cider too Shed.

    Turf – You bought the domain then?

  9. Paul – your all-Brit ML sounds like it’s starting at traditional Default level – strangely draining, isn’t it? That’s why I wasn’t too bothered about encountering PES2011’s Advanced Start glitch. I really could not be arsed with the Stremer Slog. You might remember last year when I jumped to PES5, I bounced off the Default start and resumed an older, more progressed save instead. It might be time to say the unsayable and declare the trad-Default ML a thing of the past. Sacrilege, I know.

  10. Daryl – too late now, but a quiet corner of a pub with a book (or a book on your phone) would suffice. Re. game shops, I was in one today and had to leave after a minute. The music was overbearing. Meat Loaf, too, who I’ve never minded much. I was in there long enough to see that FIFA18 preowned is now £22. It was £30 or so a month ago. I also peeked at a preowned PES2018 – £25.

  11. Shed – only calling it as it is. And you’re right, Castello is the player upon whom The Myth of Castolo is based.

    Re. the sun, not a fan either. Nice to look at and walk in for a few minutes, but deliberately contriving to be in it… Nope. The news organisations have a set way of covering a spot of ‘nice’ weather. It’s traditionally hotter than [insert name of proverbial holiday destination – Corfu, Costa de Sol, Algarve, etc.]. And there’s always a picture of a packed beach, with a detail shot of two sunbathers in a deck chair. I hate sunbathing and always have, and remarked as such to a sun-lover yesterday. A curious feature of sun-lovers’ psyches is that they see their stance as the default one, from which sun-sceptics are deviant and must be held to account. ‘But why don’t you like sunbathing?’ was the question. I shrugged: ‘It makes me feel uncomfortable.’ Their response: ‘But why?’ In other words, I was being asked to justify a physical aversion to baking in the sun, in a way that nobody would ask me to justify why, for example, I don’t like sweetcorn. Such people (lovers of sun or sweetcorn or anything else you don’t like) will always assume that their orientation is ‘obviously’ the correct one.

  12. Uncle Turf – and another thing on the weather, related to the discussion yesterday about Goths and girls with their smartphones tucked into rear jeans pockets: the appearance of fine weather always prompts the emergence of a temporary tribe called the Shorts People. These are people who have decided to wear shorts from now on, no matter what happens. They all favour knee-length cargo pants, I’ve noticed, and often flipflops. When the few days of heat that triggered their appearance inevitably turns chilly again (if it’s not already), the Shorts People stubbornly stick with the shorts and grimly hang on for summer to return, shivering in the meantime. The same process that creates Goths and girls with smartphones in their rear pocket, creates Shorts People.

  13. NG – coming from a ML where I could win 3 or 4 nil every match on Top Player, but then lose most matches on Superstar due to the complete cheating fuckery on show, a balance of the two was the ideal, and that is kind of what I’ve got.

    Top Player with a crap team (remember they are all youths and rated 50-60 OVR) and low Team Spirit means every match is hard, but results can be achieved by focus, concentration and tactics, without being cheated off too much, my main concern is with the actual ML infrastructure/house rules and whether they will be fit for purpose for any kind of longevity.

    It’s that time of year where nights are lighter, more time is spent outdoors and gaming time dwindles, so the time that is spent playing has to be meaningful, not sure the Brit-Only ML house rule has much legs in it tbh.

  14. Paul – last summer in PES2017 I played two seasons as St Etienne in a rare managerial change, and got a lot of mileage from having an OPR cap as my sole House Rule. I think I capped it at 81. Any player who hit that was sold immediately. I ended up favouring players in their high 70s OPR in decline. It was a good little side-ML to round off PES2017.

  15. I will just play this ML casually and see where it goes, I wanted something different from the last 10 season grind ML, so this will be different.

    I’m very much leaning towards PES 19 all pimped out with mods on the PC.

  16. I am not a sun lover either. I am going on holiday to Turkey later on in the year and most of my time will be spent in the water where I am happy.

    PES 2011 is just not bending for me and have lost my last 3 games to leave me in 13th.

  17. Unless you get the Turkey Trots that is.

  18. Half way through season 3 and the more I play PES 2011 it makes going back to the new games harder. We have spoken about fouls and stuff to death but it is the simple basics of football that have been taken away. The CPU in this game does make mistakes and doesn’t have prefect control. The same applies to your own players. This brings into the game an importance on winning and awareness of getting the second ball. So in the game you can play the percentages and hit a hopeful long ball that you know the defence is going to struggle with but aim to win the ball from the clearance. This morning I had momentum in a game and played a long ball to the CPU full back with the sole intention of him putting the ball out in the final third. This meant I could keep the pressure on from the throw in. Simple football basics. But the modern games have now ignored this with the basketball swapping of possession.

  19. Darryl – I can see what you mean. Since my return to pes 18 I’ve found that hardly any games are engaging and a lot of that has to with the removal of the basics. Fouls, individuality, tactics, it is all non existent. To my disgust I found that Bayer leverkusen plays exactly the same as say, fc Utrecht. Kind of already knew that but still, quite disheartening as I went for a bit of an eredivisie / Bundesliga mix in hopes of games being a bit more interesting. Alas, it seems it is not to be.

    After a few sessions and about 10 games into my “pes 18 revival” I’ve seen three (3) moments of interest. 1) I’ve scored my first free kick from shooting range. Appalling goalkeeping, not my skill or castledine’s made it happen unfortunately. 2) my goalkeeper Ruddy is a real standout individual so far. Well pleased with that. 3) PSV have Romario in my game and he actually played a bit like how a played in real life (a long time ago mind you) in a cup match just now. In the preceding regular season match though, I couldn’t even tell he was on the ball.

    So ah… A mixed bag really. Paul, how are you getting in your super / elite / Mashup league on pes 18?

  20. How’s this for Arthur c clarke’s mysterious coincidences…. I play marvel puzzle quest, one of those match tile app games. Players join 20 man alliances, randomly unless they know someone who runs one – I don’t, the alliance I joined was just next cab off the rank, is a mixed bag of uk, Belgian, American, et al players. Occasionally we mention other games we play on the chat forum. Today I got a message asking if I’d been playing Pokemon go in Darlington as the marvel puzzler asking had just beaten someone with my name. Probably not very security conscious of me to use the same user name but the odds on that must be pretty extreme. On a par with me dialling a local number randomly and getting Werd or almost mowing down a pedestrian Darryl when I’m on the way to uni.

    I’m now thinking of ditching windwaker as I simply feel too old and grizzled for the cutesy stuff. It’s not particularly challenging either.

  21. #1 – Starting to become a bit more immersed in my UEFA Superleague/Elite League Mashup, I’m doing very poorly, rock bottom, 6 defeats from 9 games, my players just simply aren’t good enough to compete in any area of the pitch, so even when i manage to string a nice little move together, any ball played in behind the defence or into space just sees the COM players out sprint me, out muscle me and deal with the danger with ease.

    Last night I started backing off the COM more, rather than my usual aggressive pressure tactic, and make the COM make a decision, it seems to be working quite well as the run of 5 straight defeats halted with a 0-0 draw against CSKA and a 1-1 draw with Schalke.
    Then followed a very enjoyable 2-0 win against in form Napoli, so results can be achieved they are just very very hard to come by.

    I have a couple of signings (English) in the works that should see the team boosted a little, and after the draws and win, a 3-1 defeat agaist Lyon followed, but my Team Spirit went up from 44 to 52, which is helping, as before no player would make any decent runs or track back.

    One thing that is annoying is that when using the scout, you cannot search for just English players, only by area and set that to England (or Wales or Scotland), but that only returns players currently playing in those countries, the results I got back were for Kosovans, Swedes, Africans etc…

  22. Uncle Turf – I’ve tried many times to fill the glaring Zelda-shaped gap in my gaming history, but I… just… can’t do it. I get so far and then that floating thing going ‘hey!’ annoys me too much.

    Darryl – only just embarked on Season 2 here – some new signings, of which more tomorrow – and I have to say it’s true that the AI is considerably less vicious than we’re used to now, but the footballing makes so much more sense. A clear demonstration of how the Philosophy of PES has turned from ‘football in computer game form’ to ‘a computer game based on football’. There’s a crucial difference.

  23. I bought a Switch last week so have been knee deep in Zelda BOTW for the past few days. It’s my first Zelda so I was unsure what to expect but it is truly a wonderful game, the commentariat were 100% correct. Easily in my top 5 if early impressions are consistent. The Switch itself is great, the novelty may wear off but for now I’m a little bit in awe, like the feeling I had when my dad bought the Amiga home in 1990.

    NG – If you get the opportunity at some point, play BOTW. It’ll convert you.

  24. I think windwaker is a particularly cutesy version of zelda adventures. And the sea remains really annoying, a lot of parallels with skyrim/red or dead, etc in terms of simply plodding from here to there.

  25. Cook – it’s a measure of my detachment from Zelda, and from all things in general gaming, that I had to think really hard to remember what ‘BOTW’ stands for. Gaming for me now is all PES/FIFA on consoles and the likes of XCOM/Civilization etc on PC. I have been playing loads of They Are Billions on PC recently.

  26. Never seen the fascination with Zelda games, it seems its trendy to like the Zelda series so people do, just for the sake of it.
    Duck Hunt on NES is where its at.

  27. I’ve also never played a Zelda game. I’ve also never owned a Mario game – although I have had a go on one or two of midi-Shed’s.

    Still no PES over the weekend. Tidying up the garden took up most of my weekend. Damn you heat! Oh and the evening was spent both nights having to be shut in due to our neighbour having a third barbecue in as many nights.

    I hate the term as it’s no doubt a favourite of those who carry their phones half out of their back pockets, but I did “binge watch” the new Lost In Space series on Netflix. Good fun. Just got the last episode to watch tonight. I absolutely refuse to “skip intro” by the way.

  28. Shed – now that it has turned cool again, even a bit chilly at times, the fun is watching out for the tribe I call The Shorts People – these are the summer-clobber-wearers who called summer too early and now won’t go back on it, and stubbornly stick to wearing their shorts and t-shirts outdoors no matter what. I saw plenty of them today, and they’re not all daft young things. A middle-aged woman in a sleeveless summer frock walking along in a proper brisk spring breeze, and it was plain from her face that she was freezing, but no, having called it, they won’t un-call it.

    Also watching Lost In Space. I’ve got 4 episodes to go. I remember watching the original repeated Sunday lunchtimes on Channel 4 in the 80s and finding it almost unwatchable because of how the Robinsons were tricked by Dr Smith every week, discovered his schemes, but somehow forgot all about it by the next week. The reboot is at least got proper sci-fi credentials with the alien planet being alien. It’s cheesily 21st century as well. By episode 3 I was all like: ‘Okay, okay, women can be engineers too, I GET IT.’

    Despite it all I’ve got some PES time under my belt. We’ve discussed it before, but football gaming fits perfectly into the crannies of middle-aged life. The other night I had 35 minutes to spare – just 35, no more – and in that time I got in a browse of the transfer market, a bid, and 2 matches. Any other game, any other genre, just doesn’t lend itself to that convenience. I need chunks of hours set aside for Civ or XCOM, for example, or I’m not even going to load them up.

    Paul – I once played a Mario game. Never again.

  29. I saw a girl with a huge galaxy s9 plus hanging out of her skinny jeans back pocket over the weekend, had a little chuckle to myself.
    Lost in Space Reboot on Netflix is on my ‘to get to’ list, looked good.
    Saw Rampage, with the Rock at the cinema on Saturday, bloody good, take your brain out movie, the effects on the creatures were absolutely unbelievable.

    I grew up on Mario’s on the NES, Mario 3 was the best, and of course Mario Kart.

    Carlington, a LMF/AMF is starting to carve out a decent identity in my ML, he’s only 62 OVR but seems to dribble well and make decent runs, and can unleash a decent shot.

  30. Paul – re. the back-pocket phone girls, I want to know what it’s all about, i.e. is that really the most convenient place to stow their phone (and if so, aren’t they worried about it working loose, pickpockets, etc.), or is it a fashion/display thing, something that the young girls are doing these days, similar to their pouting photo thing?

    Re. your scouting problem from earlier, is there a nationality field in the Advanced Search screen?

  31. It must be some sort of fashion trend NG as common sense obviously dictates that its easy to be stolen, work loose and fall out, or just looks plain silly, file it away with all those snapchat filter selfies with bunny and dogs ears that the female population seem so keen to love taking.

    RE the scouting, If I use advanced search I can indeed search for nationality, and find English/Welsh/Scottish players, which is what I have been doing, but over a certain OVR level, chances of signing are very low, and theres only a handful of British free agents to tempt.

    Using the actual scouting option is meant to return players with a high chance of signing because your scout is in regular contact with the clubs etc, but there is no option to scout by nationality, only Area, meaning what country the players currently playing in, so choosing England will return Algerians, Moroccans, Africans, etc all currently playing for clubs in England.

  32. A tad unfair on Mario and zelda you lot. I have few warmer and fuzzy gaming moments than my first games with link and the chubby plumber. Mario kart, of whatever incarnation, has to be in all time top tens, especially when multi playing. I just think that zelda has had its time for me now, I’m too schooled in the more violent, not everything is black and white type of adventure gaming. I swapped it for the ps4 reboot of arkham, two games I loved on PS3 yet didn’t download any dlc so there’s plenty to go at.

    Do postmen get included in the shorts people? Personally I can understand why they opt for al fresco pants the speed some of them seem to go nowadays. The most offensive style I encounter is the leggings/ugg boots combo that infests school playgrounds at drop off time. It’s almost worth abandoning my principles and investing in private education.

  33. Turf – I was a Mario fan too, as stated earlier, Mario 3 with the raccoon tail that let you fly/hover was superb.

    Did anyone play Mike Tyson’s punch out on the original NES?

  34. I can see why Zelda BOTW gets so many accolades but personally I’m struggling to love it compared to the more story and character driven instalments like Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask. That rather twee sense of humour plus an annoying level of difficulty. I got as far as the first guardian but that was far too tough so I’m back drifting around hoping to level up in some fashion but without much sense of purpose.

    Super Mario Odyssey in contrast has been one of the finest games I’ve ever played!

  35. Paul – I did. Never was able to beat Tyson / Mr. Dream back then. Great game, simple but fun. As soon as I hear the music it takes me back.

Comments are closed.