I call him Ian

I have sacrificed Season 14 of Master League to breaking in a new-look young squad, and I am loving it. Plenty of star names, but they’re all Regens, and all on the inconsistent side. With the notable exception of Xavi, who really does feel like something special in PES2019. He also has surprisingly good stamina for a ‘fancy Dan’ type of player. Wanting to see how Xavi develops is one of many stories that keep me pinned here. That’s if I can keep him, of course. He was expensive to begin with – £4m a year – and his next contract renewal will probably pose me a dilemma.

I was knocked out of the Champions League at the group stage after a truly dismal performance over the six matches. Lost 4, won 2. I did well to finish in 3rd place in the group, and qualify for the Europa League — which I am very happy about. This competition is my long-term bogey competition throughout all my PES and Master League history. I’ve won it in all its guises, going all the way back to its WEFA Cup days, maybe twice. I think. Possibly more than twice, but in recent years definitely not at all.

Given the league table situation the Europa League might be my only route back to the Champions League next season. I will be giving it my all. My first proper trophy is yet to come on PES2019, remember. The Community Shield win was a one-off exhibition match with no preceding rounds and therefore doesn’t count.

I’ve progressed to just after mid-season. At the time of writing I’m halfway through February and heading at full speed for Season 15 and whatever it brings.Look at that table – rubber-banding is much in evidence. Last time, I was totally out of the picture, but results above have mysteriously gone my way. I have lost 12 (TWELVE) matches, but all the teams above me have nicely lost and drawn a peculiar amount too. With 10 matches remaining the game is dangling the carrot of top 6 (very doable), top 4 (ditto), or even the title (very remote chance).

I sent out a couple of youngsters on Loan for the first time in this PES. I haven’t had the luxury of a surplus of players before. R JARVIS went on loan for 6 months. I saw T WERNER in my Youths and signed him specifically to send him out on Loan, and he went for a year. I’ll be interested to see how developed they are when they return. Jarvis was already shaping up well but he needs regular games, not occasional ones.

I only bought one player in the window – yet another ‘name’ Regen. I wanted a new young AMF with a booming shot. Xavi and Modric have come a long way but PES shooting is all about being able to wallop the damn ball from 35 yards, and neither can do that yet.

I searched for AMFs, under 25, with a shot power of at least 81. A few results popped up, but the most affordable was a certain N OGILVY. I looked up that joke PES name… and he’s Clint Dempsey. More of a CF to me, but in PES2019 his main role is AMF.

I spent a few minutes on the squad number screen and made all my squad numbers ‘proper’. Castledine is number 7. Forlan is number 10. Xavi is number 8. Cech is number 1. Etc.

In the Europa League my Round of 32 opponents are Basel. I won the first leg, at home, 1-0, spurning numerous opportunities to make the tie safe. Second leg at theirs, with my narrow lead, is my next match.

By Tuesday’s post I may have finished the season – although 10 league matches and a hopeful Europa League run may be just too much. I won’t get to play at all until Monday now, and I can’t wait. I haven’t had this much zest for an ML since at least PES2015, and probably more like PES2012.

Updated: 10th May 2019 — 11:39


  1. I noticed you uploaded a new YT video, assumed it was destined for inclusion in this post? But No video.

  2. Paul — a YouTube snafu involving my use of a copyrighted track. They sent me a nice early notification, nothing to worry about etc., and I pasted the link, but then the link wouldn’t work. So I thought bugger the music and deleted the audio from the track, then thought, actually, I’ve still got the raw files and will make a longer one for Tuesday hopefully. The only thing of real note in this one was Ogilvy’s/Dempsey’s first goal, which was pretty standard anyway, and maybe Castledine hitting the bar with an R2 curler. That’s the idea of these ‘moments’ clips of course, just mildly interesting, nothing astounding. Also I think I’ll go back to using YT’s free music options now.

  3. On the rubber banding theme…my latest Colchester game was 0-1, 0-2, 1-2, 1-3 (I changed nothing in this, it was then half time). Then 2-3, 3-3, 3-4, 3-5, 4-5 and with the last kick of the game 5-5.

    Wtf is going on? I have a run of the mill 4-4-2 average League 1 side. I can’t find any mention of this online, just people posting formations ‘guaranteed to get goals’. Has my PES ‘broken’ curse hit this as well? Much as I enjoy scoring I’m seriously wondering whether to restart as it’s so ridiculous.

  4. Bought the game today for the Xbox One. Was thinking of trying the unpatched out-of-the-box version first. Would that be a reasonable option or is the general feeling that the fully patched game is definitely better?

  5. Good to read you sorted the squad numbers out NG, one thing I absolutely have to do every season. If I see a CB wearing number 4 it makes me want to forfeit a game to sort it out, even the reserve RB hogging the number 2 is a no-no.

    Good to see PES still going strong. I never really intended to leave my ML but I got into a few other games – FIFA, RDR2, Dead Cells and of course XCOM 2. Speaking of which I’m nearing my first end game on Ironman (Veteran) of which I’m immensely proud after what must be 10 ‘game overs’ before now. I’m starting to get anxious for my squad of super soldiers but what a great game it is.

    I plan to return to PC PES with all the bells and whistles, most definitely stadium server, there’s an amazing range of stadia available. I have a bit of unfinished business in FIFA beforehand. I’m 10 seasons in and haven’t won anything more impressive than the League 1 title.

  6. Uncle Turf – only a more advanced FM-head than me could answer your justified question there. My only offering is that you bring some sort of anti-Midas touch to any game you try to play…

    rhymes450 – it’s close but on balance I would say the fully updated game has everything the vanilla release did, with much of the problems taken out. Never suffered LCS myself though, so bear that in mind.

    Cook – yes the squad numbers annoyed me too but it’s one of those where I forget to do it for so long that my main striker ‘owns’ number 18 or number 24 or whatever he ended up with at random. But now I have properly done by first choice First XI numbers and it does feel and look better. They never all play together at the same time of course so there is still the likes of number 14 and number 20 et al on the pitch.

    And Veteran Ironman was my setting in my playthrough of the vanilla XCOM2 campaign too, so I know roughly what you’ll have been through. I lost my greatest soldier in a very late battle. He’d earned all the promotions and all the armour, but I made one foolish choice and had to watch him be torn apart by the enemy. That was about 3 battles from the end. So be careful…

    Currently attempting Long War 2 for the umpteenth time. This time I’m playing ultra-conservatively like you see the YouTube players playing it – i.e. cautiously advancing (turn limits are more generous in LW2), activating as few pods as possible at a time, retreating when needed, evacuating before disaster strikes, etc. and so far so good. Avoiding squad wipes is the thing for me as I never used to be able to admit defeat before all the death, and just call for evac.

  7. NG / Cook – Long War 2 is absolutely the way to go for best XCOM 2 experience imho. It’s the reason that the game is my most played title on Steam. 🙂

    I’m enjoying seeing how your regens are progressing – as you seem to be NG. Also, chalk me down as another that has to sort out the squad numbers each season. 😛

  8. NG – I fixed it last night, a 2-2 draw followed by a 0-0 scrap…oh and then I lost 3-6 to Rotherham!! What is going on? Des Lyman and the teleprinter boys would be going into meltdown for Colchester every week. Going to have to do some research.

  9. Thanks NG. Will play the unpatched game for a while. I’m seeing the LCS (not sure any regular reader of this blog could fail to see it at this stage…even if it didn’t exist:) but I’ll see if I’m up to the challenge of defending against it for a while. For the moment, I’m having mixed luck. In a week or so, I’ll get the patches, see how the game compares and decide.

  10. Following on from last post …. An example of the way PES 19 uses space.

    This isn’t a one off. It happens regularly.
    My Player allowed to run 50 yards unchallenged through the middle of the pitch.

    Essence of football my saggy ballsack

  11. SockWulf – I could play LW2 forever and probably will. I have 190 hours in XCOM2 on Steam in total, and probably 100 of them are LW2. I have to conclude business with it before moving on to WOTC. I’m nowhere near even getting to the first Dark Events yet, so this could be a while, although my current attempt is the most promising yet. It’s hard to decline missions but that’s what I’m doing when I know I haven’t got the personnel to cover them.

    Uncle Turf – store your save file somewhere safe and reinstall the game in Steam? Might fix it.

    rhymes450 – don’t know if you were around in September but I notoriously never experienced LCS, and if anything it’s something I notice now, today, rather than in vanilla. I could appreciate scepticism of others and I recorded full games, highlights, the lot, to show it. I’ll dig out the links later, not that they really prove anything one way or the other.

    Paul – I’ll add James’s wonderful phrase to the list of ones that you love. #AIthatWeNeed #GoldenCopy #FormAndEssence

  12. NG – I bought WOTC on release, but it wasn’t long before I ventured back to LW2. Horses for courses of course, but the amount of tweaks and improvements in the mod makes it tough to move on from .. strategical choices such as having to pick which missions to take on being one. 🙂

  13. SockWulf – of course vanilla XCOM2 punished turning down too many missions, so I was always reluctant in LW2, which led of course to me trying to take on missions with basic weapons and 4 Rookies and a Corporal, that 8 fully equipped, experienced soldiers would just about manage. My average quitting point for my 15 or so LW2 campaigns has been when the Faceless start showing up. I once played all the way through to that one where the waves of enemies come at the crashed Avenger. I had about 3 good soldiers. It was suitably harrowing. My few hours on WOTC before I went back suggested to me that they took notes from LW2. The general tactical feel felt very similar.

  14. Paul – I could deliver any number of rebuttals that might briefly cause that low-hanging scrotum of yours to involuntarily contract upwards for the first time in years, but I can’t be #FormAndEssenced.

    Weirdly, playing PES and FIFA in close rotation has turned my FIFA 19 into a #GoldenCopy. I absolutely destroyed a dozen opponents in Weekend League last night, and many of the fixtures were the type that can swing either way for me. I’m a great technician in football games, but lousy at the kind of exploit-heavy, reductive kick-‘n’-rush that you seem to need to succeed at the highest levels online. I just don’t have an appetite for it: the moment that playing a football game is reduced to an unromantic systems-based approach, I have zero interest in taking part.

    The most significant ideological separation between FIFA and PES in recent years is that EA Canada have moved towards greater automation of defending. Your AI-controlled players provide blocks and interceptions that you just don’t get in PES, and your back line holds its shape with very little direct interaction. In fact, the standard playstyle online is to press with forwards or midfielders whenever possible, and to only switch to centre-backs when you have no other choice.

    A few days with PES has underlined just how I’ve got used to FIFA 19 doing so much of the defending for me – which is a surprise, as I’ve always thought of myself as a pure “manual” defender (I hate that holding a button to turn a player into an AI-controlled homing missile shite; it’s a longstanding aversion). This has somehow translated to *far* better defending in online FIFA. Thanks PES!

    Quick question: does anyone here play ML on Challenge mode? Is the chairman always such a dick? I lost 25 “confidence” points for a run of seven defeats and three draws on a few days back, then – rubber-banding ahoy! – somehow managed to only scrape back five points from a sequence of two draws and eight victories yesterday, while also completing a “Win 5” objective. And I took the scalps of the top two teams during that time. Is it just broken? Or do you need Invincibles-level performances to get a pat on the back? Right now, I’d settle for vague flicker of recognition and a nod of the head while passing him in a corridor. Miserable bastard.

  15. James, good to have you back and yes on Challenge mode the chairman is a complete twat all the time. I have been playing it constantly since release and been sacked by the cunt well over 20 times. On my current ML effort I survived two and a half seasons in D2 but then was dismissed despite being miles clear at the top. At that point I reloaded a save and temporarily went back to classic mode to get through the ‘sacking window’ as the entire thing is clearly absurd

    season 4 off to a decent start, although squad a bit threadbare as there was only one really good player on the loan list, a Belgian DMF Dendoncker. After pondering regen Forlan and his exploits for not-Greg for a while I reluctantly decided against as his starting wages are already 1.7m and will no doubt escalate absurdly. Instead we picked up Gomis from the youths – I remember Turf having some success with him – and with his very first touch for Red Star he headed in Castledine’s corner for a late winner, superb moment!

  16. abbeyhill – Thanks! Might turn it off it becomes a problem, but I quite like the idea of having my hand forced on transfers every now and again. So far, though, I’ve seen no evidence of players being unhappy with a lack of matches, or anyone looking to force a move.

    Dendonker is a really solid DMF, but also plays well as a centre-back – I’m at Wolves at the moment, and he’s a valuable squad member. His height makes him pretty handy at man-marking opposing target men. You still only win around one header in five when they compete for punts downfield, but that’s actually not a bad ratio for those situations in PES, it seems.

    A player I’m really enjoying at the moment is Talisca. Looks tall and clumsy, and doesn’t always fare well against aggressive pressing – but when you get something right with him, he’s an artist. Piledriver of a shot, too.

  17. Challenge mode makes players less keen, and hence more expensive, to join but the only big difference in the transfer market is that the AI will sometimes activate the buy out clause meaning you are powerless to stop key players leaving. Not often though

    Personally find that formations are pretty important in this tough PES and I’ve spent a long time looking for optimal ones. Wide midfielders seem pointless given the low success rate of headers so currently I’m using a 4-2-2-2 with the midfielders and strikers in a zig-zag arrangement when the opposition has one striker up front, a more defensive 5-2-1-2 when they have two or three up top. Dynamic full backs with a decent low cross are key to making both work. I’ve always preferred a more manual style of defending with R2, but just holding X to home in with a tackle seems to work much better in 2019. R2 still the best way of trying to block a low cross with your full back though

  18. That’s pes players all over. Always having to try to make excuses for the game. What rebuttal to my player running 50/yards through the centre of the pitch which is more vacated than a man utd homecoming parade is there!? Would be hilarious to hear it.

    And pes defenders not being aware of where the ball is or wbos around them or the context of the situation, plus the lethargic player switching obviously means that pes defending feels more manual, because you have to work five times as hard to get it to do what you want because the AI and game mechanics are so shit.

    And referring to Fifa online is completely pointless as the game is vastly different online vs offline.
    We all know that online in any game is the crudest most basement level idiotic representation of them all. People don’t play to play football, they play to win at all Costs

  19. Paul – the first part of my post was directed at you, and was intended as a light-hearted sentence where I exit the prior discussion. The rest of the post was directed to everyone, and was not in any sense a continuation of our exchange about single-player AI. I apologise if that was unclear.

    I’ll happily debate FIFA 19 vs PES 19 – or FIFA and PES in general – at great length. They’re both very fine instalments that have to stand up to far greater scrutiny than the vast majority of videogames due to the way that we play them, and the sheer hours we spend in the company of their idiosyncrasies.

    But we shouldn’t continue this, you and I. For me, it’s a topic of interest, and I’m curious to hear and discuss the views of others whether I agree with them or not; for you, it seems almost *personal*, and your indignant, occasionally acerbic responses don’t strike me as at all commensurate to the topic at hand. So: tap tap, I’m out.

  20. Abbeyhill – yes, Gomis was a striking bright light, in that he had power and some sort of definite style compared with the acres of dross that pass for attacking players nowadays. Only problem was his wages went through the roof as he tipped into the older player declining stat bracket.

    And challenge mode was indeed yet another konami fuck up. Finish 9th no matter who, what or when, ultimately get sacked because it can’t handle anything remotely sophisticated. Whatever the opposite of the Midas touch is their innovation team have it. But those faces, and hairstyles and tattoos..!!

  21. Maybe because I’ve nothing to win/lose but I didn’t find that title ‘race’ remotely interesting. At no point did I ever feel Man City wouldn’t win every match remaining.

    The one day international was good though.

  22. James – not personal at all.
    And fully support/respect others opinions on the games, I wouldn’t have been here posting daily for over 10 years if I didn’t welcome all opinions, we are all individuals and will all have varying opinions and views on the games we play, but, I had an issue with you citing comments as fact, when they’re not, they’re just your opinions.

    To claim that the PES team always get the form and essence of football right and that EA dont even try, is a ludicrous statement when you consider the presentation, big game atmosphere, range of animations, commentary, everything that goes into making a football game feel authentic, and exciting, that EA offer, but yet PES just do not, and the things they do put in are often broken.

    As Turf commented, PES productions do the absolute basics, and even then not very well, The absolute epitome being that you play a career mode with the very intention of reaching the tip of the pile and winning the league trophy, yet, there isn’t any trophy, and hasn’t been for years, just a blank placeholder space, if that is not the biggest example of amateurism, and lack of effort I don’t know what is.

    But yeah, we’ll leave it there, there’s nothing left to discuss, what you said is untrue, its your opinion though, so of course you are welcome to it.

  23. Paul/James – to me it feels like an argument not worth having, certainly one that I’m not interested in personally. After a draining working weekend I’m just looking forward to a day off doing things I love, and that’ll be PES2019 on this particular day. I’m really not into the idea of defending this or rebutting that etc. My chronicling of my PES-playing experience is sort of baked into the blog title, and it will just roll on and on this year. I’m excited about PES at this time of year for the first time in years, and I’m not going to worry about its legitimacy or otherwise.

    Uncle Turf – totally agree, and I dislike the adulation that Man City get. I’d much rather watch Liverpool or Spurs any day, even the likes of Crystal Palace. It’s probably no coincidence that I disliked Spain when they were at their del Bosque height a decade or so ago. I like all the individual players and Guardiola is of course a master of his craft, but the output they produce… it’s not my kind of thing. I’m a simple soul and I like the more ragged approach. TL;DR: Tippy-tappy prima donna football my arse.

  24. Well said NG. You hit the nail on the head re: PES this time around for me too. I’m usually done by now, or rarely playing come this time of year, but PES2019 still has its hold. Long may it continue. I’m approaching mid-season in my current term, and I’m lining up an 18yo L. DIARRA as a DMF option. Maybe he’ll be my XAVI for now. We’ll see.

    Oh, and touching on something you said earlier. I have 475 hours on XCOM2 thus far, with around 450 of those being with LW2. It hasn’t even started to get old. To be fair, I didn’t hang around once LW2 surfaced due to being hooked on the first Long War mod on XCOM: Enemy Unknown. Big fan of their work! Not bad considering I was determined to dislike the newer versions of the game when Firaxis rolled them out. Surely nothing could come close to my beloved UFO: Enemy Unknown back in my Amiga days, or Laser Squad in the Spectrum / C64 era. I’ve rarely been happier to be wrong. 🙂

  25. That’s fair enough NG, didn’t see it as an argument anyway, James had his say on what he thought, and so did I.

    The space video I posted above shows what a mess PES’s AI is.
    I don’t need to add anything further.

    And Man City…. Arab oil Money buys you titles.

  26. SockWulf – I have about 150 hours on Civ 5 over the past couple of years as well, otherwise I’d be closer to your XCOM2 figure. I’ll be resuming my current LW2 push later, where I am very cautiously optimistic that I’ve got the best chance of any attempt yet.

    Paul – the script is written for Spurs to win that final! Poor old Klopp, I do like him, but he has no luck. If he does win that cup I’ll enjoy watching his reaction more than any. I still hate that the CL Final is on a Saturday evening now though. That will never feel right to me.

  27. NG – we have had far too good a season to finish it empty handed, I believe the script was written for us to miss out on the title, but have the UCL as a consolation prize of sorts. Not a bad consolation mind.

    Of course if it was a PES script, We would score the winner with Wijnaldum running through the centre of Spurs midfield totally unchallenged, to side foot home, then henderson and Salah could kneel in front of the cameras and Smile as theres a big blank space in front of them.

    Of course I jest.

    Have you seen EA Access is coming to PS4.
    £3.99 a month for a huge back catalogue of EA titles, quite interested as 4 quid a month for Madden, NHL, FIFA, Need for Speed etc isn’t bad going.

    Full list of titles included:

    Army of Two
    Battlefield 1
    Battlefield 3
    Battlefield 4
    Battlefield 1943
    Battlefield: Bad Company
    Battlefield: Bad Company 2
    Battlefield Hardline
    Bejeweled 2 Deluxe
    Bejeweled 3
    Burnout Paradise Remastered
    Dante’s Inferno
    Dead Space
    Dead Space 2
    Dead Space 3
    Dead Space Ignition
    Dragon Age: Origins
    Dragon Age II
    Dragon Age: Inquisition
    Feeding Frenzy
    Feeding Frenzy 2
    FIFA 14
    FIFA 15
    FIFA 16
    FIFA 17
    FIFA 18
    Fight Night Champion
    Heavy Weapon
    Madden NFL 15
    Madden NFL 16
    Madden NFL 17
    Madden NFL 18
    Madden NFL 19
    Madden NFL 25
    Mass Effect
    Mass Effect 2
    Mass Effect 3
    Mass Effect: Andromeda
    Medal of Honor: Airborne
    Mirror’s Edge
    Mirror’s Edge Catalyst
    NBA Live 15
    NBA Live 16
    NBA Live 18
    NBA Live 19
    Need for Speed
    Need for Speed Payback
    Need for Speed Rivals
    NHL 15
    NHL 16
    NHL 17
    NHL 18
    NHL 19
    Peggle 2
    Plants vs. Zombies
    Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare
    Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare 2
    Rory McIlroy PGA Tour
    Skate 3
    Star Wars Battlefront
    Star Wars Battlefront II
    The Sims 4
    Titanfall 2
    UFC 2
    UFC 3
    Unravel Two
    Zuma Deluxe
    Zuma’s Revenge!

  28. Paul – or not score, as you didn’t score, and as I never score when the space thing happens, and as we exhaustively discussed several months ago when the topic first surfaced. No, the space thing and other issues have never fully disappeared from PES2019, but it’s still at least 15 and a half times better than any of the lightweight, empty FIFAs I’ve played in recent years. I’ll never play FIFA19 because I’m just not interested in it. I’m sure it is a great game, but you’re welcome to it. I’ve got one that does me.

    I’m really not up for the 1056th version of this. Please just let it go now.

  29. LMAO @ Lightweight, empty FIFA.

    I really would love a proper sensible definition of ’empty’.
    totally bemused how a game with hardly any stadiums, no trophies, a half broken shallow ML mode, and moronic AI can be labelled as 15 x better than a game with proper presentation, trophies, stadiums, adaptive AI ……….

    I guess there’s no accounting for taste.

  30. Paul – that is some list and very tempted at 3.99 a month. It is about time they did something like this as the little one has the XBox One with a game pass. But that list is much more to my taste.

  31. Never mind all this pes v FIFA love/hate nonsense – what the fans want to know is was that really Werd sneaking back onto the blog? I thought he’d had a fall and been eaten by his cats.

  32. Yep NG, I was around when you posted the video about not suffering from LCS. I’ve probably read every post since you were playing PES 2008 on the PS2/PSP. I think that it’s probably down to the very strategic defending style you seem to adopt. I’m finding that if I can take early control of the full back, stand off and exert secondary pressure on the winger, very often, he’ll turn back and play the ball backwards. Then if the winger does get the ball behind the full back, I find I’m almost better off letting him make the LC, switching control and cutting it out with one of my defenders before the ball gets to the near post. But it does get extremely tricky when the winger plays it inside to a teammate on the vertical edge of the box, who then plays a low pass across the box for an inrushing player to shoot. That low pass seems nigh on impossible to defend against so far. I’m guessing that you didn’t see that much because you didn’t allow the situations to develop. In any case, I’m really enjoying the defending challenge for the moment and, elsewhere, the game is surprising me by how good it is. It looks stunning, even on my original Xbox one, and I’ve already scored a long ranger and come back from a 2-0 deficit in the South American Club Championship (only on Top Player admittedly). Is there anything better in life than coming back from 2-0 down in a video football game? Well, yes there is, but it is pretty satisfying and I think it happened to some extent because I was enjoying the gameplay so much that my concentration didn’t waver. We’ll see if the honeymoon lasts with the vanilla version.

  33. Considering I haven’t played PES 2019 since pre Christmas, maybe not since November, do you think all the changes to gameplay and ML will have suitably changed it enough to make starting a new ML worthwhile? Or do the same transfer market issues exist and people’s issues with gameplay?

    Can’t decide if I want to start a new ML or a career mode on fifa starting in L2!

  34. Jay – you won’t find a great deal different since your successful all-conquering Master League campaign, so I think the appeal of another one may be limited unless you deliberately restrict yourself to lesser players or something like that. The form and essence of PES remains true.

    rhymes450 – it’s as good a theory as any. I’ve certainly always, always been the type of defender who uses secondary pressure whilst covering likely outlets with my controlled one. The LCS sufferers will say ‘but I do that too’. As you may remember from my full-length matches and goals posted at the time, I never had LCS (they were a fair representation of my experience), and if anything I notice the tendency more now, today. I did often have the ‘AI turning away from goal’ thing, I remember. That was appalling to be in the game on release. I bet you’re seeing that on vanilla. For that reason alone, patching it up must be worth it? Whatever you choose, happy form and essence!

  35. Jay – FIFA 19 continues the steady progress that FIFA 18 made with offline AI, inspired in part by the introduction of offline Squad Battles in FUT, so Career Mode is as good as it has ever been, I’d say, and definitely worth a look if you’re curious.

    That said, I’m one season through my first Master League since August, and I’m *really* enjoying myself. I don’t care about the missing licences and other such frippery: on the pitch, with the players, PES is the solo experience I prefer.

  36. You’re back Jay! How is fatherhood? I think you should go for FIFA, as you did comprehensively ‘beat’ PES2019 and it has not changed that much

  37. NG, I remember you commenting on the “AI turning away from goal” thingy, but I haven’t seen it at all and I suppose I would’ve noticed it. Maybe it’s not in the Xbox version 🙂

  38. rhymes450 – nice callback to a notorious PES2011-era episode there…

    Nobody has had a go at the post title for this one, which doesn’t surprise me as only the real oldies would make the connection between N OGILVY and Ian Ogilvy, a well-known TV actor of the late 1970s, most noted for starring in The Return of the Saint. I used that show’s theme music for a ‘moments’ clip compilation but took it down without publishing after YouTube sent a copyright notice. That normally wouldn’t affect much, but pasting the link here didn’t work, so I pulled it.

  39. Wow .. The Return of the Saint. I vaguely recall that from my childhood, only because I was fascinated by the ‘futuristic’ graphics of the matchstick man. My parents were more into the likes of The Rockford Files at that time I believe. Well played sir! I’d never have got that one.

  40. Aah, an ex-templar-y post title nG.

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