Daylight Robbenry

Shaping up to be a classic PES year. I’m not counting chickens yet, but the augurs are good.

Heading for mid-November in the ‘real’ world, my Master League world in PES2019 is taking on surprising levels of depth and width.

Season 5, and my club, Coventry City, continues to languish in The Championship. Master League is a made-up world, so there are no pundits on my back questioning any of my questionable decisions.

This is the lowest-ranked I’ve been heading into Season 5 on any PES for many years.

My aim for the coming season is one thing alone: promotion. It’ll be tough on Superstar. And yes, I do think occasionally about dropping back down to Top Player, but that level is really too easy for me now. I am generating a kind of enjoyment and deep absorption from the friction of struggling with Superstar that I don’t want to miss out on. The struggle is a joy. So here I am to stay.

This is my full squad for the start of Season 5:

Valverde, Arciero and Soulas at the bottom of the subs’ list are my only Loanees so far this season. They’re really just to provide cover. I clawed my way back into the black financially, but splurged it all on renewing contracts.

Suddenly, that formerly rich-pickings Loans list seemed to dry up. No more Diawara-style stars. Valverde was the highest-rated available.

Since this screenshot was taken I have abandoned the DMF role for the first time ever in my PES history. Rodriguez went to the bench. Rice moved to the DMF slot but will play as a CMF. Castledine has taken the central midfield role but will play slightly further forward as an AMF. And I’ve moved that left-sided AMF position a little wider and a little further forward and made it an SS role – to accommodate Robben, who has started to emerge from the Youth doldrums and is delivering performances.

That is an unfortunate nickname for Lincoln. I know ‘terrible’ here is meant in the same semi-archaic sense as ‘terrific’, but nowadays in English, the foremost sense of ‘terrible’ is, well, terrible. But Konami gonna Konami.

I’ve had a decent start to the season on Superstar:Those 4 draws all came in the first 4 fixtures, and all ended 1-1. Frustratingly, in three of the matches’ cases I was 1-0 up and dominating for the majority of the time, before conceding the heartbreaking equaliser late on. Superstar in PES2019 – as in previous recent years – is a harsh, unforgiving mistress.

A major turning point in my PES2019 fortunes came in a wonderful match versus newly-relegated Hull.

I went into the match needing a win to get myself into the top half of the table and really get this hoped-for promotion season kickstarted.

I made my mind up before the match that I’d Had Enough of the draws and I damn well would win this match no matter what.

I played like a demon, covering spaces, tracking runners, shielding the ball, and somehow it was still 0-0 after an in-game hour.

Then I slid in too rashly in the box, and conceded a penalty. Most AI penalties go to the keeper’s right (left as we look at it from the kicker’s POV), so I duly dived that way – and saved it.

Yes! I lived on.

Play was cleared to the halfway line, where I promptly lost the ball. Hull surged back toward my box, and I rashly button-mashed in panic, leaving a Hull striker clean through. I chopped him down from behind. Red card for my defender – Cadavid – and yet another penalty for Hull.

I dived the same way. The AI player put it high, straight down the middle – and the ball hit the bar and bounced out.

Yes! Again, yes!

Now I was in ‘holding on for the 0-0’ territory. But I was also in ‘can I snatch a goal for a famous victory?’ territory….

I didn’t have another CB on the bench, so I played these last few minutes with one CB and two SBs. A helluva risk, but one I wanted to take.

Hull pushed right up against me. It was the most overt change of approach from the AI I’ve yet seen in PES2019. They were all-out attacking, leaving only a token few defenders back to cover my forwards (Robben, Gomez, Jarvis).

I thought I was up against it before – now the pressure seemed tenfold. I led a charmed life. Time ebbed away. I wasn’t threatening the AI goal at all. I knew I would get perhaps one opportunity before the final whistle.

I used to specialise in getting results with 10 men, or even 9 men, on ISS and PES of old. Been a while since I’ve done that…

Right at the end, I was defending a free kick when the ball fell to me. Hull had all their big men pushed forward, leaving themselves really short at the back. I went on a breakaway where I had 3 strikers against two defenders…

Jarvis with the little dinked through-ball, and Robben with the rifled finish.

The game obviously ‘knew’ what the goal meant to me, as it showed me those riotous celebration scenes, typical for a goal celebration of a team that knows it’s performed a smash and grab at the death.

I’ve scored quite a few aesthetically nicer goals on PES2019, but not one of them was more satisfying than this goal.

I held on after the AI’s kickoff. They had one attack, which I halted in its tracks. The final whistle went. It was the most glorious win of my PES2019 career so far.

Updated: 9th November 2018 — 11:25

97 Comments

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  1. Paul – save yourself the time, I am aware of the list of ‘things’, but my stance now is the same as it has been for – what is it? 17 years (since the first ML?): it really, truly, crazily, doesn’t matter.

    I saw a Pro Evolution Soccer trophy (a silver promotional merch thing that looks like the old UEFA Cup) on ebay the other day and thought of you, but the bugger’s gone now.

  2. NG – Save myself time with what? The ML logic?
    Was just interested in seeing if anyone can figure out how it works, the form arrow impacts were always a mystery until that was figured out with the +/-% increases, just be nice to know.

  3. No, I thought you’d immediately set to work on a long list of things ML does/doesn’t do that it should/shouldn’t do. Save the time! Almost everything it does it shouldn’t do, and vice versa.

  4. Finished season 7 in 7th place, securing Europa League football for season 8

  5. Paul – I’ll check this evening but I think it’s the usual Barcelona / Bayern / PSG and whatnot so I think it’s tied to team strength (as in OPR ratings) as well…last 3 seasons ; couldn’t tell you TBH as I’m on a restart right now (ML save lost again) and just started out.

  6. No NG, that would be a waste of time, we’ve discussed that over and over many times, we are all aware that PES does not do a lot of things that it should, or does them badly, I was simply referring to understanding how the club ranking is calculated. Thats all.

  7. #1 – That would be very poor, if the club ranking is based on team strength (ie an Average of the teams OPR). If that’s the case, rename the listing ‘Club Ability Rankings’.

    In my eyes the rankings should take into account the same as the UEFA/FIFA rankings – clubs who have achieved consistent success in the top leagues are ranked higher.

  8. Linked to the conversation but in a real life context: imagine if after all their recent success with Zidane in Europe, Real Madrid don’t qualify for the CL (or even the EL) next season! Obviously only roughly a third of the season in but it’s an awful start for them and really does emphasise Zidane’s credentials as a coach but even more so the insane ability of Ronaldo.

    Paul – dont think you replied, but I mentioned on Friday how much I like the new kit you made me and wondered if you’d mind making me two more for my next in-game season? No worries if not/you’re busy

  9. I did see your comment Jay, if I didn’t directly reply then apologies, always busy over the weekend.

    Happy to sort you 2 new kits out, let me know what you want, colours etc.

  10. Paul – this has no basis on facts but I think it’s a combination of;

    Team strength
    Hardcoded position (e.g. Madrid are always near the top no matter what players you move in or out in edit mode)
    Performance throughout seasons

    At least to me it LOOKED that way… In previous editions this kind of made sense.

  11. #1 – So Madrid could fail to qualify for Europe for several seasons, and finish top 10 in what is in truth, a weaker league than the premier league, but still always rank higher than premier league clubs? Sounds like Konami. Put a feature in, absolutely basic, and no substance or logic behind it.

  12. Paul – I’ve emailed your PESFX email with the request 🙂 thank you very much

  13. Paul – just one point on that as FIFA uses a similar logic when coming up with the teams goals in terms of where you finish. This too is based on the teams OVR and not past performance. This is why people started to jig about with thier starting line up a few years back.

  14. Teams goals as in team Objectives Darryl?
    Crude. Neither game gets everything right.
    If Pes’s ranking affects transfer signings though it would at least be useful to know what affects the ranking.

  15. (see comments on Paul’s post today on FIFAFX for further context)

  16. Jay – I think good coaches know when to quit. There are many examples of clubs at the top of the game declining after the departure of a ‘top’ manager but perhaps there’s more to it in terms of a squad ageing together and papering over the cracks before an inevitable revamp. Man U obviously spring to mind but dalglish didn’t leave Liverpool in great shape and so on. Maybe Zidane knew Ronaldo was a done deal and jumped with a legacy intact rather than the cliched needing a break? Personally I think luck is underrated as a feature of management.

    Whatever job Lloyd has, I want, as clearly he has more free time than anyone. If I include all my restarts and current campaign I’ve played 7 and a half seasons. As a full time student, who has effectively finished, and doesn’t need to leave the house and has bored of fortnite. I’m beginning to wonder if the real lynx fur jockstrap wearing diamond playboy isn’t the green ninja named commenter…

  17. Turf – Station Supervisor on DLR. Get lots of rest days due to unsocial hours(nights) and weekend work. Off Mon-Fri this week.

  18. A sort of sir topham hat then?

  19. Jay – How are these?

  20. Paul – a striped Coventry one that looks a little like the one on the right there would be sweet, as I’ve started saying of things that are ace. If/when promotion comes it’ll be a big deal and a kit that evokes the Class of 1987 would be fitting.

    Uncle Turf – I’ve got two days off work this week and plan to be in the Premier League by the end of them.

  21. Paul – they’re very nice! Particularly like the black Bucanero one. Excellent work as always – I’ll take them 🙂 thank you!

  22. Paul – actually, would you mind changing the blue and white stripes to two shades of green stripes? And the Swoosh to red. I’m happy for the detail and style to stay the same.

    Literally the first two colours that show up if you image search “olive green” on Google.

    And then swap the colours of the GK top to blues?

    Thank you 🙂

  23. NG – unkind people might say two weeks wouldn’t be enough…

  24. Uncle Turf – and some people might be right. I’ve decided I won’t budge from Superstar no matter what happens (not strictly a Purity decision, but because Top Player is really much too easy). Potentially I could be in D2 all the way to PES2020.

  25. Jay – those greens are fucking revolting. But as you wish.

    NG – I will design you a striped Coventry kit for your promotion success. Just let me know when you want it.

  26. Paul – thanks, and I don’t want to spoil tomorrow’s post, but you can take your time with it.

  27. Paul – haha! My bedroom has an olive green feature wall! The other walls are cream! If the kit looks rank I will of course accept full responsibility as your suggestions have all been very aesthetically pleasing, I’m just not a blue and white stripe fan! Can’t wait to play in the Bucanero kit.

    In my ML World I’ve been dumped out of the FA Cup again by Manchester United – I think that’s three years on the trot now – in the quarter finals. Still in the driving seat in the league. Top by a few points with 7/8 games left and into the quarter finals of the CL, where I’ll face Inter. I’ve normally won it all at least once by the end of Season 7 (SEVEN). The earliest the FA Cup will come is Season 8 (EIGHT).

    Still very much a 9/10 game for me. Finances, transfers, training, and gameplay keeping me interested in my ML Story, even with Paul’s extremely seductive romance novel over on FIFAFX.

  28. Jay – It’s ok, I’ve seen your choice of ties, it was to be expected 😉
    NG – No worries

  29. Paul – that’s an elite tie. Lighting didn’t do it justice 😉

  30. Well I’m off to a great start in the quite alien-feeling ligue 2. Got played off the park in my first league match and lost 4-0. After that, knocked out of the coupe de France, 2-0. Well at least it looked good with the custom scoreboard, entrance and all courtesy of the evoswitcher mod.

    In good news I got a striker called Traore (one of many) who is about 6 foot 8 and wins most aerial challenges. Got a nippy cmf called Ideguchi who is the only one besides Arcas who can actually dribble. Hooray for stats actually doing something.

    #pesstatsmatter

    Paul : excellent kits as always though that green is indeed hideous.

  31. #1 – That EvoSwitcher tool, and the many mods for the PC PES are works of genius, cracking tools.
    I did try telling him, it actually looks ok modelled up and will probably look quite trendy in game, but wouldn’t have been my first choice colours.

    You should have seen the tie he wore to a wedding, was like something out of the 80s SwapShop 😉

  32. Paul; thanks so much for the kit. In all my pes years I have never had a custom kit and am honestly delighted with it! It’s great to see my lads in it. I can’t thank you enough really appreciate it.

  33. More than welcome Gary, glad you liked it mate.

  34. Paul – big fan of those! The goalie kit is spot on and aren’t those olive greens a real treat?! Along with the Bucanero black kit (I presume the socks and shorts are black, too?) I can see my players winning it all!

    Very much echo Gary’s sentiments. The kits make a big difference to my enjoyment of the game and they’re very much appreciated 🙂 I look forward to loading them up!

  35. I think someone on here has a subscription to guns n ammo magazine and enjoys hardcore paint balling

  36. Turf – wouldn’t be me. There isn’t a more annoying merchant or sales type than the knob at a paintballing stand in a shopping centre. Just like an olive green. Complements my skin tone 😉

  37. Well i guess that explains his “taste” in colors then Paul 😉

    The evoswitcher mod is indeed bloody awesome they’ve added goalsongs recently for a couple of teams. Small additions on their own but put together they make a huge difference.

  38. #1 – I had my finger hovering over a pretty potent gaming PC (custom build) the other day, that would have played PES 19 and any other game on the highest settings with ease, but stopped myself, the money wasn’t an issue, more the principle.

    I couldn’t justify spending £900 on a machine to be able to play PES just because Konami can’t be assed to finish the game properly themselves, and PES is literally the only thing I’d use the PC for.

    That, and another session of matches on FIFA 19 last night that were some of the best I’ve ever played, convinced me I don’t need to be playing PES.

  39. Paul – I fully understand and the principle of it all would hold me back as well. As it is it will probably give you hundreds if not thousands of hours of gaming excellence for years to come so there’s the flip side to that coin. However as it is just for pes for you I’d say… Don’t. It does make the game better but remember that most bells and whistles it adds (see the extensive list I posted a while back) are already present in fifa for you. Maybe a few exceptions here and there that you’ll never notice.

    I’d stick to fifa all the way if I were you! Strange how the PES pangs keep coming back for us. I can honestly and objectively say that fifa 18 was the far superior product last year and I put some hours in on that one. At the end of the day though pes still won out in terms of hours played and I seriously rate pes 2018 in pes 2008 territory.

  40. #1 – That’s the overriding factor- I’m not aching to be playing PES at all, I don’t even think about it.
    Usually it would be that FIFA’S bells and whistles, the stadiums, presentation etc is immense, but you long for the PES game play because whilst FIFA’s is usually good, its not PES, but that just does not ring true at all this year.

    EA have gone down the surprising simulation route, the game is slower, heavier, players don’t just turn on a sixpense, CB’s can feel clumsy and tank like, and there is great individuality between players, so the game play is also there this year, so there just really is nothing PES could give me over FIFA.

  41. I love my gaming PC for its own sake. Having a tinker and a tune-up is something I like doing anyway (I’ve got two old ThinkPads with different flavours of Linux that amuse me for a few hours every now and then), and it runs some of my principal gaming delights – the peerless XCOM2, etc. – like the proverbial butter.

    I really don’t feel the need to enhance my PES experience from what it is on the PS4. I know it could be ‘better’ atmos-wise, loads better, but I’m fixated on gameplay to the exclusion of all else.

  42. NG – I stumbled across a website the other night, old-games.com which literally has thousands of older games on for download, I grabbed a few old classics I used to love, a few adventured games, PES3, and some others, and all run flawlessly inside a Windows 10 VM on the 2018 MBP. That’s the extent of my wish to PC game, £700+ for a PC just to play PES is ridiculous, I seriously would not use it for anything else. I dislike PC’s, all the fiddling, the constant time churning updates, the ecosystem of it, the crashes.

    I love being able to pick up my MBP, open the lid from power off, and be working away within 10 secs.

  43. Paul – Nice find, that. Some absolute horrors on there by the look of it, but a few gems. Reminds me that I keep meaning to install Command & Conquer Generals, as that’s one franchise I’ve never really given a fair shot but have always wanted to get into.

    I don’t get the time to PC game, nor do I have the correct set-up. My PC is sat in the wardrobe at the moment. I’ve recently negotiated successfully with the wife to let me get a computer desk for the landing, so I may delve into a few more PC games soon. Like not-Greg, my machine won’t blow anyone away, but it’ll handle most titles at decent resolutions. Perfect for picking up slightly older titles.

  44. Struggling in season 8 in the League. 19th after 10 games, but 5 wins out of 5 in the Europa League.

    Scored a cracking R2 goal with Hulk today, will try and upload tonight.

  45. Paul – that is the perfect spot to be in then I would say. I thought I picked up on a little pes hankering in some of your posts but I must have mis interpreted. I must say your fifa posts are whetting the FIFA appetite but like yourself, I’m sticking to my guns for now.

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