Regarding AI fouls, league table scripting, and super-duper free kicks

Almost at the end of January now, in Season 10. The wages bill is dire again, so there’ll be no new players. The AI fouls count per match for my most recent session of 4 matches went like this: 0,0,3,0. One of those matches was better than all of the others. Can you guess which match that was?

The lack of AI fouls count is the canary in the coalmine for a single-player football game. A football game without AI fouls can never be great.

Yes, you can still have a good experience without fouls. But it’s the difference between pastime and passion. Given how great the experience is with AI fouls, it makes no sense at all to eliminate them in the way Konami have done. All I will say to Keith Konami, if he’s reading, is well done, Keith, well done. Golf clap, etc.

The current table:I started yesterday’s session in 4th place and lost the first match of my session. All the teams above me also lost. It was nice of them to do that.

Then I drew my next match. You won’t believe what happened… All the teams above me also drew! Can you believe that? Incredible!

So what happened was, I won my next match – and all the teams above me also won! This was truly astonishing!

My next match was against one of those teams above me – Fulham – who were as tough as a weirdly-ascendant Fulham in the year 2029 could only be. I got a draw out of that match, and was lucky to get it. That draw had to haul me up the table, of course.One of the reasons Master League remains compelling, despite the table massaging and the no-fouls, is the very real and very deep connection with individuals. R JARVIS is in serious decline now. 69OPR and he often plays like it, unfortunately, in my team of top players. But he still gets the odd important goal and the game recognises what he is to me.

I have made it to the Quarter Finals of the FA Cup for the first time in this PES. This match was a proper war of attrition. The game so far has seemed not to want to let me progress in the Cup.Finally today, a monster free kick. Their recent scarcity adds much value here. PES2019 on release and for some months after was very free-kick-friendly, even for me – but it has not been so for some time now.

Here’s a free kick from around 34 yards, it looks like to me. I’ve tried a few like this before and got close. I was stunned when this went in:

Yes I know: the GK, standing in the middle of his goal, should get it, but he doesn’t.

Also note the weird phenomenon in the replay – spotted by commenter abbeyhill a few weeks ago – of the pitch stripes switching from horizontal to vertical.

It’s my favourite free kick of nuPES, but not my favourite free kick of all time.

Any excuse to post the greatest free kick ever scored in a football game – my Georghe Hagi, back in PES2012:

That looks like around the 37-40 yard mark, a good few yards farther out than Benat’s whopper.

A few things make Hagi’s a better free kick. It’s an outswinger, it hits the perfect postage-stamp corner, the keeper is not so much at fault, and it came in a less free-kick-friendly edition of the series – a Silver Age PES game. As good as PES2019 has been for me and still is, it certainly belongs to PES’s Bronze Age, and the series’ agonising descent into multiplayer button-mashing hell.

(You can browse some of my PES2012 Hagi goals here.)

Updated: 5th February 2019 — 16:56


  1. Great FK NG, I did see it earlier this morning whilst browsing YouTube.
    That table massaging would bug the hell out of me, any success in the league would feel ‘assisted’ and tarnish the achievement, hardly subtle is it.

  2. Paul – any FK from a long enough range has the potential to bring that great shout of joy from me just like a long-ranger.

    Table scripting is hard to ignore this year. Most years it’s like watching any TV show or movie. Yes, we know these are all actors reading from a script that’s heading towards a planned conclusion, but we go along with it anyway ‘as if’ it’s real, and even though it’s weird to have emotions about something that isn’t ‘real’ we enjoy it too much to be bothered. That’s what a standard year of ML table scripting is like. This year it’s as if the actors are looking at the camera and grinning and asking me if I’m enjoying the twists and turns. It’s a different kind of suspension of disbelief required.

  3. That’s a very well put analogy NG, exactly like that.

  4. Keith konami has just looked over his shoulder and wondered who this ‘ken’ being mock applauded is…

    I got out of the wages hole with limited damage. Gomis re-signed on 1m+, mukiele likewise, only Cahill is holding out (and by that I mean his contract only has another year to run, nobody is out at the end of this season). Forster went, a full back went, samba went and I signed monreal regen (seems a bit premature at 32). I seem to be getting an attendance bump which is adding heftily to my wage budget and making life quite straightforward. End of year three will of course be the problem. For most average joes…

  5. Any news on the new DP with the scottish stadiums etc in? has it been given a release date?

  6. Uncle Turf – thanks for the head’s-up. Keith was a late substitute for the less-comical Ken. And the wages thing has never truly gone away for me. I think it’s league-and-club related. The game is all the better for it.

    Paul – not a ‘scooby’, as I believe people still say, about the DLC. Although I’m not waiting for it and haven’t been keeping an eye out. A quick look just now at EvoWeb suggests there’s no release date.

  7. The annual battle has started early this year….despite recent temperatures of minus 2 and a ground level shrub clearing exercise, mr rat was spotted strolling across my lawn this afternoon. F*cker. Straight onto the council for another 42quids worth of poison and rat investigationing. After previous farcical chasing with spades I’m launching an immediate air strike. If I see it again I’m going to try and borrow a terrier. Or concrete the lawn.

  8. Uncle Turf – rats in daylight hours? I thought they were mainly nocturnal, like mice. I know with mice they say if you see any in daylight hours it means there’s loads of ’em.

  9. This Thursday, Feb 7th the datapack will be released according to pes universe. They posted a couple Konami tweets so looks to be true.

  10. They are up for a fight any time any light conditions. I saw a mouse once in my garage, 13 trap empties later I reckon I got them all. I reckon it was just a rat passing through looking for food but even so he was on our cricket pitch and that just will not stand!

  11. had a field mouse in my garage once, ate its way through about £200 worth of fishing equipment and bait, greedy little stigs !!!

  12. Paul – I’d bet that was more than one mouse.

    #1 – thanks for the update – so it’s tomorrow. It’ll make 0.000001% of a difference to my ML and how I regard PES2019. I’ll only know there’s even been an update if I encounter Celtic/Rangers in European competition in the next 2 seasons or so (likely all that’s left of this ML). As ever I give not a single shit about faces, boots, tattoos, etc., and regard the focus on them as a symptom of the fatal illness at the heart of nuPES.

  13. NG – dont be silly, all the game play changes that Konami make but don’t mention, will be on show, to know what they are just visit the forums.

  14. Turf – When the rat stopped, which position would it have been fielding at?

  15. NG – no problem. The claims of gameplay having been improved by 200 percent while there won’t be any gameplay update at all will entertain me once again to no end.

    Cue multiple paragraph-length posts coming and ending with “I dunno, might be placebo…”

    Comedy gold. As for the rest of the update I’m with you. Could not care any flying fuck less.

  16. Good question chris99. To a right hand batsman it would have been silly mid off. It then wandered round the slip cordon before escaping down fine leg. Given the multi tiered bird feeding paradise one of my neighbours has I suspect it was just passing through – we’ve only ever seen one per year – but there will be loads of them waiting to march forth if we allow them free roam. I’ve never heard of the lone wolf rat.

  17. BTW NG for all the misgivings I have with the game, I get on average about 5 fouls per game. Theres still the odd game with zero but really fouls are not an issue for me. I’m using a gameplay mod of course so there’s that.

  18. Don’t worry Turf, 52% of the country will assure you that there will be no free roaming rats after Brexit.

  19. Chris – I would have thought it would be the other way round and that Project Fear have put out a news story to say that under a No Deal scenario we won’t be able to control them. I actually don’t give a shit about Brexit either way but can see from a vantage point of view that some of these claims are ridiculous.

    I am coming up to my 50th game day on the gorgeous The Forest. I have established a main camp which is all walled off to prevent Mutants gaining access to it and am planning on building a house boat to patrol the island and give me more access to heavily patrolled areas. I have also started rabbit breading as thier fur is a much needed commodity. If anyone is interested I have 15 mins footage of me just dickin about:-

  20. Darryl – whats the actual objective of the game ?

  21. Well well well……the ugly side of PES has reared it’s head in the most blatant way so far in my 6 seasons. My first foray into the champions league, I got to PSG in the quarter final. A disappointing 1-1 draw at home after pretty much dominating, Neymar was missing from the return leg (he’d been anonymous at “NEW SONNE ARENA” anyway but it was still nice to see him absent) so, hopes were high.

    Those hopes were dashed within 15 game minutes.

    Now, PSG’s goal in the first leg was “Fucking bullshit”, a shot hit the post and the ball as if it was made of metal and the scorer had a magnet on his boots, inexplicably went straight to him for a simple finish. Their first goal in the second leg? Exactly the same. Shot hit the post and found an improbable path past THREE of my defenders who didn’t react at all, and their CB Kimpembe finished like a striker with a first time shot into the top corner past a stranded keeper.

    2 of their other 3 goals were a joke also, the game actually finished 4-2, after being 4-0 down I scored in the 89th minute, then experienced an OG the likes of which my entire 15+ year PES career has never seen. An attempted diagonal long ball from the left touchline was intercepted by a PSG defender, but his attempted header back was wide of the keeper who’d strayed to his right, and nestled in the net. Despite meaning nothing to the outcome it still made me shout ” IT’S AN OWN GOAL!”

    But still, the rest was bollocks.

  22. Mike – One of the very reasons i’m glad i’m not playing PES.
    The levels of fuckery and cheating have always been ramped up in PES in the latter stages of tournaments, with things like what you mentioned happening all over the place.

    That and the fact ‘star’ players are anything but in PES, they are just identkit player X1739, makes every game dull and same-like.

    I don’t know how people are still playing and making content for PES every day, 7 months in, it was poor to start with and by the sounds of it, with all the recent online-orientating patches, is even worst now.

    Quite intrigued to fire it up and play a few games just to see for myself.

  23. Paul – Basically you have crashed in a plane over an island with your son on board. The objective of the game is to explore the island and gathering clues as to his whereabouts. However it soon becomes clear that the island has cannibals and weird mutant things on it in various tribes. They are too powerful for you at first so you have to develop your armour, weapons and camouflage before being able to take them on. I am still developing my home base with several dotted outposts to enable exploration and survival. It is one of the best games I have come across with the most complex AI behaviour of the cannibals. Stunning game set in beautiful scenery.

  24. Sounds different Darryl. I like exploring/adventure/puzzle type games but not a fan of the Fortnite style ‘hunt-gather-loot-build’ type affair so doubt i’d take to it.

  25. Darryl, I recently posted on a PS4 group I’m in asking about a game I’d seen on YouTube about 18 months-2 years ago. Turns out it was The Forest. Watched your video and a couple of others, it’s only £13.99 so I might get that before Red Dead or Resi 2, looks right up my street.

  26. And Paul, to be honest I’ve not had a great deal of negative experience with PES 2019 at all. I said early on that all the teams play the same and hilariously got shot down (it’s a fact, whether you’re playing Stoke, Barca or NXTYLLWHVOX they all play tiki taka,slick one-twos etc) but other than that most other gripes are bearable for me. It’s no PES 2013 mind.

  27. Wasn’t by me Mile. I’ve been saying teams play the same for years. It’s a cold hard fact. Anyone that says star players play differently and true to life in PES, or that each team feels different to play against is a flagrant liar, or fanboy, or both.

  28. Paul – the little one has Fortnite and can say it is nothing like that but is built around the elements you describe.

  29. Yeah, fortnite is just a cartoon-like call of duty, there’s no thought at all really. That looks more like far cry minecraft and very much my kind of thing (apart from the son stuff – that killed fallout as I’ve said before).

  30. Turf – yes a hybrid of Minecraft and Far Cry is a good way of describing it. The son bit doesn’t really play a part in the gameplay at all. Your end objective is of course finding him but your main occupation is outwitting the mutants. I can honestly say that I have never played a game like it.

  31. Will add it to my library Darryl. That Apex Legends game
    Looks pretty sleek !!!!

  32. Btw anyone who doesn’t watch Forged in Fire is dead to me.

  33. Mike – we’re at the stage of fighting for scraps from the online table. The first 3 months of PES2019 seemed like a return to Silver Age goodness, for me, but the thing has slipped since. Not happy. I played a couple of matches this afternoon with the new patch (a few actual gameplay changes announced) and if anything the game seemed faster and more frantic and the fouls fewer.

    #1 – lots of console players say they get plenty of fouls too. It can only be my style of play. I do rarely invite tackles, playing pass and move a lot. Still, it’s a style that brought 11 fouls on me in 1 match on PES5 last summer. That’s the standard.

    Darryl – enjoying watching your 15 mins of The Forest after work! I might be tempted…

  34. Yes Turf. Love that show. Your knife ….. will cut !!!
    If ever there was an assembly of redneck sister fuckers, it’s on that show.

  35. Please surrender your blade…go back to your chicken shack/trailer park and start polishing your collection of antique farm tools. Some seriously odd people and a lot of them come from a few particular states. And just happen to have a garage bigger than my house with a huge fuck off oven in it.

    Shed – if you don’t watch it you really should as you’ve got the outbuilding…

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