Tales of the Unexpected Earnings

I’d forgotten all about this old-school Master League screen. Expected Earnings used to be a regular haunt, particularly in the very early stages of a Master League. You’d tentatively open it up and flinch as you saw just how much budgeting and economising and tightening of the belt you’d have to do to avoid a Game Over, or the forced selling of your best players.

That was Golden Age PES on the PS2, when Master League was never meant to hold your hand and be ‘accessible’, or whatever buzzword was used a few years ago by the design wonks at PES HQ. Expected Earnings used to be brutal and forbidding and capable of giving you nightmares. The very phrase ‘Expected Earnings’ was akin to ‘Room 101’.

Here in my Silver Age Master League, I have got the PES2011 Advanced Start glitch giving me wings, as the sums show. I won’t be tightening my belt much in this ML. But still, the screen has the power to give me the willies no matter how apparently well-off I am.

This has in no way been any kind of traditional Default ML – which is exactly what I needed it (not) to be.

The open-ended future is one without any new PES games in it, barring an unlikely, borderline-miraculous change of philosophy at PES HQ. So I have all the time in the world to get to the traditional grinding Default MLs in the future, and I will. (I fancy playing one of the ‘lost’ PS2 games after this, in due course.)

I went shopping with my £9m, and shipped out nearly all my remaining Defaults – leaving myself light on numbers, but strong on quality.

I also changed the starting formation to a more classic-feeling 4-3-3:

I started the new season fairly confident of a promotion campaign.

Aaaand…. opening results have been terrible. I met newly-relegated Wigan Athletic and Aston Villa in the first two fixtures, and lost them both 1-0. Then I drew the next two matches 0-0. Then I drew the next match 1-1, scoring my first goal of the season, another scrambling, scuffed-off-the-knee job from one of my midfielders.

I’m already eyeing the new formation and remembering why I ditched the 4-3-3 after the PS2 years in the first place. I don’t ever remember getting it to work on the PS3 games. 4-3-3 was perhaps a Golden Age-only possibility.

I’ll give the 4-3-3 another 5 matches and then make a decision. The goals need to come or there’s no point in it. I might as well revert to the 4-2-2-2. I’ll see.

Overall, PES2011 is fulfilling one of the central requirements of a great football game: that it be the background pipe-and-slippers of daily life. No matter what else is happening, no matter how tiresome life and work decide to be, I’ve got this little bolthole to retreat to. No multiplayer online frenzy of fun-and-flow could ever take its place.

Updated: 24th April 2018 — 11:10

93 Comments

  1. NG – we have done the AI (that we do(not) need) discussion several times before, and you are right in saying that its an aggressive attacking AI, but its the way it goes about it and the context that makes it so poor and makes it an AI that we do not need.

    It would be fine if The AI was aggressive in the right context, ie Barcelona dont have a particularly high tempo but pass you off the pitch and are deadly in the final third, Real Madrid play at pace utilising the wings, with ronaldo and bale and players use skills, Bayern are very tight in midfield, using Ribery and Robben to send crosses in for Lewandowski, Man City pass fast, play very direct and attack in waves, Stoke play long balls into the CF, etc etc…… but they don’t.

    Every single team plays the exact same identical way, attacks the same way, defends the same way, the only difference between playing Swansea, or playing Madrid, is the kits and player names, that is all.

    Here is a video I recorded ages ago showing PES 2013 running inside a Windows VM on an iMac using Jenkeys Patch.

  2. cd452 – Great first post. There’s something very enticing about PES 5 that keeps calling us all back. I’m envious of you getting to sample it for the first time. I look forward to hearing how your ML progresses.

    I was waiting to pick up midi-Shed in town last night when I remembered that copy of PS2 PES 2011 I spotted in the rather excellent little independent retro game shop that recently opened here.

    I risked not paying for parking to nip in and was delighted to find said copy of PES 2011 still on the shelf, having first spotted it a few weeks ago. I even found myself picking it up and perusing the back cover just as I did back in the day when trying to look casual about buying a game I had been gagging to buy for weeks.

    A nice chat with the shopkeeper about the upsurge in retro games in the face of the curse of online gaming took place before a paid my fiver and left feeling very happy that I had rescued a PES – one that I have never played.

    My PS2 has been stolen by midi-shed for his room but I did manage to steal it back for a quick game in the shed last night. I hooked up the PS2 with a HDMI convertor (highly recommended) and was staggered by how good the presentation and menus are. The game also retains much of the nostalgia we associate with PES 5.

    Only played the one game (a 1-0 win as England vs USA) on Top Player before I unhooked the PS2 and filed PES 2011 away for another time. Just that one game showed how badly we have had it since PES moved to last gen and now current gen consoles. Graphics aside, the PS2 era is where it’s at in terms of a proper single player changer and the AI we REALLY need. Whether I ever go back there long term really depends on getting another PS2 for the shed and whether I can prise myself away from the convenience of the PS4.

  3. Paul – Out of interest, what footy games would you say do display an opposition AI with varying tactics and playing styles. I only ask as I realise I’m not sure if I have ever really noticed such a thing while concentrating on playing more-or-less the same way in every match apart from attacking and defending.

  4. cd452 – it’s remarkable how well PS2 emulation on PC works nowadays, isn’t it? If you go back as far as 10 years ago or even 5 years ago, it was dodgy, and there’d be more toil over getting the thing running than actual playing. The holy grail for console emulation was always getting it to the stage where it runs with the straightforward ease of any app, plug and play etc., and that’s where we’re at now. It was hugely influential in my decision to go retro PES from now on.

    #1/Paul – of course, I won’t be able to sample today’s DLC and enjoy the placebo patch discussion, either of you planning to download and check? There’s no patch been trailed of course, so there isn’t one. A shame as Konami have got previous GOOD form on pushing out an April patch that radically changes a PES – PES2014 – but that was then and this is now. PES2014 had zero foothold online, and there were precious few playing it offline, so there was nothing to lose by pushing out a late patch. Imagine the shrieking online if the core values of PES2018 changed now. I’m reading that today’s PR efforts from Konami are all myClub-focused.

  5. Shed – depends how tech-minded you are and how decently-specced your Macbook is, but you could set up a Windows partition on that, and play retro PES on your Macbook. Might be more fiddling than it’s worth though. If you’ve reached an armistice with PES2018 and enjoying what you get to play of it, stick with that I say.

    Re. The AI That We Need, I agree with the implied view that footy game AI has always been pretty basic. The ultra-aggressive PES2012 and PES2018 AIs were and are both what we Need in a single-player game. I think Paul will say the FIFA AI plays much better than the PES one, and what little I have seen of the former he might be right. I will get to FIFA. #oneday

  6. Shed/NG – I dont think any football game to date, even PES 5 has ever completely nailed the AI in terms of being realistic, varied, intelligent all over the pitch and most importantly, situation-aware. Based on the above, PES 18’s AI is one of the worst I’ve ever seen.

    And Yes, FIFA 18’s AI is light years ahead, every match I played, felt different, teams actually played like their real life counterparts, the COM was aware of match situations such as aggregate scores, late goals, the need to attack or defend in numbers, it adapted to things you try repeatedly, and whilst still far from perfect, with a few flaws, it makes PES 18 look fisher Price in comparison.

  7. The PES2014 April patch coincided with the game being free on PS Plus, I assume in a last ditch attempt by Konami to mend some of the damage ready for PES2015. I played through 11 seasons of ML over the summer that year after not playing a football game for 6 months, good times. The game which saw me through the winter of 2013/14 was Ni No Kuni. I bought Ni No Kuni 2 recently and it is a shadow of the first game. As is so often the way with modern gaming the turn based strategic combat has been replaced with real time action RPG nonsense and according to the reddit community is much better. Another game I’m no longer the target audience for. Thankfully the Switch will scratch the turn based combat itch with Mario + Rabbids Kingdom later this year.

  8. Cook – the real-time combat toxin has done to turn-based classics like Final Fantasy what the online multiplayer toxin has done to football gaming. Those who love the ‘fun and freedom’ of it are the ones listened to, and coincidentally also the ones willing to pay for boosts or boxes or whatever they’re called. Final Fantasy 15 is an FF game in name only.

    There are still plenty of turn-based strategy fans, enough for them still to appear. XCOM2 is the best turn-based strategy game I have ever played, nosing ahead of any Civilization. I’m keeping an eye on Battletech, released just two days ago, predictably with technical problems on PC right now, but has been warmly received by the mech-head fanbase.

  9. Shed – this season is shaping up to be a titanic battle between myself and PSG (unexpectedly relegated last season) for the title. After playing 3 games, we’re both on 9 points with the 3rd placed team on only 4. PSG have scored 11 goals and conceded none in those three … It’s interesting to hear your thoughts on a much later PS2 edition – what’s the general consensus on how the later PS2 issues compare to the ‘classics’ like PES5 and PES6?

    Shed/Paul – the only time I can recall seeing a noticeable difference between AI teams in recent years was on a FIFA a few years back. Even then, the only obvious change was that Barcelona, Bayern etc would have the keeper pass the ball out, while Stoke, Bolton and so on would lump it up the pitch!

    not-Greg – Indeed. With my set-up, it’s actually easier and quicker to load up any game I want on PC than to have a session on the PS4. Even setting up the PCSX2 that I was initially using was the work of moments, and played without any issues.

  10. NG – I have downloaded the data pack – did a quick check, ZERO change in gameplay of course. Did screw up my EDIT file as I mentioned a few posts back but nothing else. Few faces here and there, whoop de doo. In the words of South Park’s Officer Barbrady: move along now, nothing to see here.

    But i DO hope the forumgoers are going mental over it and seeing a “tightened up” and “more organic”game and whatnot. Should entertain me for a few hours if nothing else.

    Was looking into Destiny 2 on PC for some shooting action btw, but then I realized I had to download a separate app, create an account etc etc. Not up for that at all so that’s that for that idea.

  11. Shed – this sounds a bit random but I would nominate FIFA09 and PES3 as the games with the best AI team individuality, and not coincidentally they are both among my all time favourites

  12. #1 – the forums will be saying it’s tightened up, more organic, and the changes are imperceptible but definitely there, etc. etc.

    cd452 – I’ve also got a native PC version of PES5 installed, with an ML save on it that I have been playing, on and off, for about 6 years now. I briefly resumed it in full, in the open, on the blog last summer, but the PC platform is not where I can ever play a daily football game for several reasons. I still play a few matches of PES5 on PC every few weeks.

  13. Yes, cd452, much as I love cricket I’ve never got away with any cricket game on any console of any type; arcade – Graham gooch on the spectrum, the various Brian Lara’s, ea’s and codemasters, or simulation – test match, cricket captain.

    The problem I have is the length of time of the real sport and way the action unfolds (hence comparison with f1). Even 20/20 isn’t just a thrash, and yet so many of those games allow you to do a sobers from the off, you can be 60+ for 3 after 3 overs. If you try and play accurately you condem yourself to hours on one match. Eventually I snap and chuck on any bowler looking to take a hat trick or if batting look to launch every ball (not dissimilar to my own dreadful batting career). I’d add those Tour de France games to the list and run for gold beyond 400m (that separates us on ages – doubt Paul knows that one!)

    Shed – do those converters work? Shadow of Rome remains the ultimate game. The pes5 killer…

  14. Uncle Turf – The convertor I have seems to. Most PS2 games look fine on modern TVs but the minute details of a footy game in full flow don’t translate well onto modern HDTVs – especially with bigger screens.

    I’ve tried various set ups and the convertor provides the best results. I’ll have to test it but I’m sure PES 2011 on PS2 shows significant improvements in graphics to PES 5. Blimey, those games feel fast now though.

  15. Uncle Turf – I don’t remember Shadow of Rome. Just took a look on YouTube – here it is running in emulator form at 1080p in PCSX2 on PC – and it doesn’t trigger any latent memories.

    If you go the emulator route, I doubt your laptop would achieve the above results (looks like a modern game), but native PS2 resolution should be easily in your grasp.

  16. Hmm…how many times have I been down this retro route only to be disappointed. I don’t have a huge tv for gaming. Which convertor have you got Shed – some of them seem flakey and others are a fair chunk of cash? Laptop emulation is not the route.

    Shadow of Rome was a bizarre adventure game featuring two characters, one would stealth around palaces uncovering plots, the other would take to the arena and engage in insane combat. Once finished you could take on gladiators in an attempt to collect the trophies for bonkers fighting moves – for example beating to death an enemy with another enemies head, or throwing limbs into the crowd. A small band of enthusiasts have pleaded for years for a new console update, to no avail.

  17. Very few games from before year XXXX are at all playable now. The year XXXX is a cutoff that changes as we move forward in time – in football game terms, the cutoff year is currently around 2003 for me. It was 1998 not too long ago. Platform also is a factor. I have a DS emulator on my phone on which I play a round of Advance Wars from time to time. #whennintendowasgud

  18. uncle turf – The one I use is this one…. https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/For-Sony-Playstation2-PS2-to-HDMI-Converter-Adapter-Adaptor-Cable-HD-USB-PSX-PS4/152737414945?epid=2194690426&hash=item238fdbff21

    Like you, I’ve taken the retro route before and then flopped back to the latest PES. I think this is because I have often left nuPES before reaching a satisfactory conclusion. This is why I’m back with PES 2018 and enjoying it, mostly. I still like the idea of sticking two fingers up (although no one does V-sign anymore in the f*** off way, have you noticed?) at new games and retreating to my shed with a precious little hoard of retro games.

  19. I think any potential appeal to me shed would be the lack of new ideas on the ps4, witness the endless franchise repeats (far cry x, et al). Mind I’m not sure I could compile a list of ps2 must plays, everything on my personal list is GameCube, snes, ps1 etc. Think there was some iffy football game once…

  20. welcome cd452, great to see more people joining both the comment section AND the retro-frenzy! How’s the stamina and injuries affecting your experience in the ML? Last time I played a long-term competition (besides my usual World Cup ventures) I completed a season with Roosendaal in the Eredivise (League mode) and it was goddamn hard to deal with it, at a certain point I had like 13 or 14 players available. It was on the PSP though.

    Shed – The retro army grows! It’s a crime that these games cost so little and that no one pays attention to them anymore, given the amount of quality gaming time you get out of them.


    Regarding my 2009 default ML, the winter transfer period just went by and I couldn’t buy a single player. Offered (outrageously expensive) contracts to a few newgens and they all refused, also tried a few on the “available for transfer talks” list but they refused as well. Only had like 2000 PES to spend so between the transfer and salary costs, all I could do after these rejections was try to acquire the lowest valued players of the database, and most of them wouldn’t be any upgrade to my current squad. Decided to take the hit and wait until the end of the season (by then I’ll have a better “club popularity” grade) to attack the free agent market with all the contracts that’ll be expiring this season.

    In the meantime I’m still not out of the promotion race. Valenciennes was 6 points ahead of us and we were facing them in the last fixture. We were 2-0 up until the last 5 minutes of the match, then they score two and we draw 2-2. A win here would’ve been amazing, putting us just 3 points away from promotion with a lot of fixtures to be played still.

    My bad though. I subbed off Ximelez for Baumann, put Jaric on Ximelez’s spot as a left-wing-back and then Baumann took Jaric’s spot as a left-centre-back. Few minutes later, cross from the opp. left-side, and their striker headers the ball without any kind of opposition…who should’ve been marking him? Baumann.
    Jaric was amazing for 85 minutes, then I blew it by destabilizing the back-3.

  21. Interesting times on my PES 2011 adventure. I have now finished season 3 (9th). With the advanced start came expectations and money to spend, given my income available. Another season in D2 has meant I have dropped 100 places in the rankings this year. A lot of pressure now for next season as I need to go up, otherwise I will see a big drop in my earnings. This would result in staff being cut and me effectively undoing the advanced start.

  22. not-Greg – how far into your PES5 save are you? I’ve seen you reference your 40+ season ML on the game on the blog several times (I’m actually currently reading through the blog from the beginning … we’ll see how far I get) and envy the constant challenge you say it gave you throughout that entire time. That’s exactly what I’m looking for in a football game now and something I hope it will be able to provide.

    Uncle-Turf – Agree with everything you say there. On DBC and AC I’ve tended to play first-class/Test matches only, and often get off to a realistic start before eventually being unable to resist the temptation of whacking every ball, normally getting caught on something like 80 off 70 balls. The career mode in DBC where you play as a single player somewhat resolves this problem, as you have to deal with your slow/useless team-mates, but the temptation is still there.

    Orlando – I’ve actually been extremely lucky injury-wise, and haven’t yet had one that’s kept any players out of matches! Even stamina wise, I haven’t had too many issues – maybe because I’m still in D2 with it’s 14 league matches per season? It’s a rare game that sees more than 3 or 4 of my regular players out of the starting line-up for stamina reasons. What season are you in on PES2009?

  23. Cd452 – from what it’s worth pes 5 is the only pes on which I could not “break” the ai. On each pes after a certain amount of time the cpu ai wilts and you know you will keep winning barring a lapse in concentration or heavy scripting. That never happened for me on pes 5. Though in all honesty it was my first pes.

    Also, just saw a glimmer of hope in real life football during the arsenal – atletico game in the Europa league. A non-contextual call by the ref! Second yellow in the tenth minute, boom player sent off. Simeone went nuts – not a lipreader but quite obvious he shouted “hijo de puta” which is not very nice – sent away as well. Good on you ref!

  24. cd452: I remember I had to readjust my way of playing the game because I was abusing the sprint button too often. Naturally, after a few fixtures most players were out of energy…learning to economize stamina is probably one of the hardest challenges for those who like me spent years playing the new games and then had to adapt to the merciless realism of PES5.
    Also I forgot the D2 season was shorter in earlier PES, was surprised when I found out that PES2009 had 12 teams in D2.

    I’m on season one. After another session, I’m 4/5 matches away from the end and my hopes of promotion have vanished almost completely. That match against Valenciennes was really the “do-or-die” for our beloved defaults, since after that we lost a lot of precious points which put us 8 points away now from 2nd place, and also far away from the 3rd, 4th and 5th. I’ve already changed my mindset from “promotion mode” to “rebuilding mode”: I’m focusing now on giving more minutes to our younger players (Ruskin had barely played so far, also Ordaz, Giersen) and using these last matches to see who deserves to stay in the roster for next season.
    6W-5D-7L so far, 5th worst defense and 7th best attack in the competition.

  25. orlando.jabulani – I remember the big Transfer Arrow getting more than a few brickbats at the time, but I never minded it. PES2009 was a neglected classic. I think I was quite harsh on it too, in the year after PES2008(PS3) I was suddenly attuned to the previously unthinkable possibility that ‘PES could be bad’ and overdid the fussiness. PES2011 got the same treatment.

  26. cd452 – my mammoth PES5 ML was 40+ seasons and was all on PS2 back in 2004-5. I must still have that save on the PS2 memory card, which is stuck inside my old PS2, which is somewhere in a cupboard. I’m only about 5 seasons into this other ML save, started roughly 2011/12 on PC and migrated between at least three different machines since.

    I never, ever tired of my PS2 ML on PES5. I had Bergkamp three times over, twice as a Regen. I only stopped playing it one particular night because PES6 was coming out the very next day.

  27. Darryl – I’m a season behind and not getting to play as much as I’d like, but the PES2011 magic is well and truly embedded now. I just cannot get anything going though. My players are decent but never seem to do anything. I suspect a hidden Team Spirit-style effect.

    #1 – saw the highlights only and the ref could easily have just ignored that second foul (which certainly was yellow cardable) the way most would, so yes, a rare instance of non-contextual decision-making. Hence the fury from Simeone & co, because in pretty much every other match, that player stays on the pitch. All managers, fans, pundits and players alike regard a 10th minute sending off for two yellows as ‘too early’, similar to the unwritten rules that there can’t be a penalty in the opening 3rd of a match, and there can’t be more than 1 per team per match.

  28. I see Coventry city’s most visible fan has been scuppered with his traditional choice of attire.

    Shed am I not right in thinking the box simply allows running a ps2 signal into an hdmi slot, I’ve seen comment that a component cable would be just as good. Sure I bought something before for the cube and it was pretty much a dud, although I imagine there’s a high doa rate.

    I’ve said this before and been knocked down somewhat but I’m yet to feel the ps4 has the breadth of games I’d expect. When you look back at the past there were all manner of offerings, from obscure sports to insane platformers. Now it seems a safety first option, so we get endless WWE games, just a couple of football titles (no management sims or one off studio efforts), riffs on the same tomb raider, call of duty and GTA theme. Presumably they’re just really expensive to develop?

  29. Uncle Turf – I was wondering when the snooker would come up. I watched a frame the other day between Jamie Jones and Shaun Murphy that trundled on for a good half hour, with minuscule breaks, misses, snookers, and dodgy tactical decisions from Murphy, and the commentators – Parrot and some other geezer – were audibly sighing and sounding apologetic about it not being ‘high quality’. It bloody was high quality! The only reason I watched the frame was because of its scrappiness. I think it’s all part of the same phenomenon that’s give us nuPES. Something rotten is abroad in the world of man.

  30. NG – same here and season 4 has started like the others as I have won 2, drawn 0 and lost 3. Bloody hard going.

  31. NG – I was outraged last night watching trump and wakelin – crucial frame, down to the colours, safety play in evidence, cut to studio voiceover saying ‘and 16 minutes later they were still on the brown’ and we flew ahead to a pot. It’s as if snooker only exists if balls are going in, the tension in those 16 minutes would have been massive. It’s the same attitude that sees games on match of the day omit lumps of time, or start midway through a half, so we can have more inane chat.

    Pes 2016 euro…it’s the only pes game I have now, due to small fella liking it (it was his first and he has no idea of the canon) – is it somehow different to the standard release plus data packs? I’ve been playing a few games in french division two while the footy is on the radio and they are not at all what I recall. Dominating possession – 60% plus at times – yet I’m getting whacked on the break, fouls (including free kicks in range), outstanding keepers, really hard to sign players, etc. It’s actually very pleasing.

  32. I blame this era we are living in now for its perpetual need of Instant Gratification and ‘success’.
    No one wants to work hard or earn anything, they’d rather just be a reality tv ‘celeb’ or post endless photoshopped selfies on Instagram in the hope of getting 5million followers and some form of ‘fame’.

    I play a snooker game on the iphone, its an online game, as most are, and the winner is the first one to get enough points ahead to need a snooker, so if my opponent goes 32 points ahead, and theres 30 points left on the table, and he misses then I don’t even get a chance to play a snooker, game over, he wins, annoying but I’ve tried loads and it has the best physics, graphics and biggest player base so I stick with it.

    But its rare that an opponent will play a tactical game, I can break and leave the cue ball up on the balk cushion behind the pack, and 8/10 people will always try a ridiculously long acute angled pot, rarely ever see a safety, and the games that are tactical are so much better, the tension of who will make the first mistake and leave a ball on and let the others finish in one visit is part of the fun.

    As for the PS4 lacking a diversity of titles Turf, I’d disagree.
    We have had genre defining titles on the PS4 such as the Uncharted series which set a new benchmark in production and storytelling, and there are loads and loads of quirky little indie developed games on the PSN store if you look closely enough.

    People tend to look back remember past things such as tv shows, films, games etc fondly as they hold a memory they connect with, which seems far greater/better than the present day, but when revisited they aren’t all that, its just the memory of a different place in life when you experienced this media that resonates usually more than the actual product itself.

  33. NG – You reminded me I have XCOM 2 on the PC. I played a few missions with the intention of returning but remember being disappointed the story didn’t follow on from XCOM 1. I trust your judgement with this stuff though so I’ll get around to it at some point.

    Turf – I agree, the variety of games on PS4 is poor, mine’s not even plugged into the telly. I guess development costs are so high there’s only room for the big guns and the indies. The indie games are where the innovation is happening, the Switch is the perfect platform for the arcade stuff and the PC for the strategic.

  34. Luckily there are still some exclusives and gems in the PS4 library. Curiously mine was gathering dust until I started playing fifa on it. Now that I’m back on FIFA – btw Paul (and others) you will immediately again notice the fact every team brings a different challenge, refreshing after pes – its getting some playing time.

    Also, am going to spring for Bloodborne. Have always been intrigued by the “souls” series but never got around to playing it. 55 percent off now in the PS store and a PS4 exclusive with rave reviews – hell I’ll go for it.

  35. Uncle Turf – Dennis Taylor is the biggest culprit for moaning and sounding apologetic for ‘the quality’ in a tight, tactical frame, when they’re literally the only frames worth watching. Despite him being involved in the most famous such frame of all time. Does he really think 18 million viewers were watching at 1am hoping to see a century break?

  36. Paul – you’d love iSnooker on the PC. The (tru)PES of online snooker games. Proper physics, proper rules, and a rating system which means that the playerbase is mainly composed of players who play properly – the wild players who go for any pot from any position lose a lot more than they win, remain low-rated, and tend to just play each other casually. I played it for a few years a decade ago. Would never have time now.

  37. Paul – uncharted was one of the titles I had in mind. I didn’t particularly like it with all that quick time stuff but it’s surely just Tomb Raider with knobs on? Just like they’re banging out the open world stuff, sniper elite 4 is sniper 2/3, Assassins Creed 207 is just…and so on. I don’t see the way out there kind of games (maybe I don’t look in the right places) but where’s the No one can stop Mr Domino…? (please tell me someone else played that). Even the footy world is down to the choice of 2 – at one time we had loads of them, most were crap granted but it was choice. It’s probably because Game and CEX are the only high street shops left, and they just pile up the bigger stuff – similar to what book buying would be like if WH Smith were the only outlet.

    Alan McManus seemed to speak quite directly last night – calling bad shots and poor decisions for what they were, but the fault lies in the tiny snippets of each frame, no context, no way of knowing what has built up.

  38. NG – I will look it up, but not having a PC environment, it’s probably a no-go for me.

    Turf – That’s like saying Skyrim is just dishonored but in a different setting, or that GTA is just mafia in a different country etc.
    Have a look on PSN, there is a wealth of titles quite small in size, a lot are free, some between a quid and ten quid, that are along the lines of Mr Domino game, which was one of the oddest PS1 games ever,k controlling a running domino being impeded by other dominos, those bloody pesky electric wires!!!

    Game and other shops don’t stock these smaller quirkier titles because it would require a physical disc, which would take shelf space away from the AAA titles which sell in their millions, plus most of these smaller indie titles are only digital downloads as the cost of mass producing discs which may not sell are way beyond tiny studios budgets.
    The choice and variation and diversity of games is out there, you just need to look.

    The most recent Games awards featured smaller indie titles amongst the biggest winners, Limbo, Everybody’s gone to the rapture, and other games that are widely acclaimed that most casual gamers have never heard of.

  39. That’s probably it Paul, I don’t ever look at PSN, I’m a physical discer simply cos I don’t trust the hardware not to die and I like having something in my hand.

    Uncharted is still shit though…

  40. #1 – that’s great to hear, I’m very hopeful it will have the same longevity for me. I’ve secured promotion to D1 with 3 games remaining of the season, having won 8 and drawn 3 of my games. PSG are ahead of me with 2 more points, and we play at the end of the season – could decide if either of us get through the season unbeaten.

    Orlando – I think I adapted quite quickly to using spring less often in most instances, which may explain why I haven’t suffered the same stamina issues. Having said that, I’m still in the habit from modern games of receiving the ball in line with the last defender, and holding the sprint button when receiving the ball to try and get some space. Of course, in PES5 this only results in a huge knock on, straight into the arms of the goalkeeper! Sounds like you’ve had a solid first season, so hopefully promotion will be on the cards in your next.

  41. Turf – Hardware dying?
    How would that matter? If you downloaded games on your PS4 and it suddenly died, beyond repair, and you bought a new one, when you sign in to your PSN account, all the games you ever bought and downloaded are immediately available free of charge in your library, you’d just download them again to the new PS4, much like still having the disc and just popping it in.

    Haha Uncharted isn’t shit by any means, hence the multiples of awards it has won. very linear admittedly, but the storytelling, production and graphics more than made up for the linear game play, it was a fine blend between action gaming, adventure and an interactive movie.

  42. I would say The Last of Us was the best game I’ve played on the PS4. Although No Man’s Sky is bloody good as well.

  43. Lloyd, No Mans Sky was a disastrous release, so may bugs and issues and faults with the game, took them months to patch it to a decent level, and The Last of us was decent, but i got very fed up with it as some of the levels were nigh on impossible, and the AI of the zombie creatures was just insane and led me to give up on the game half way through.

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