Aiming lozenges are so 2008

A couple of days of summertime stomach lurgy – you don’t want to know the details – hopefully over and done with, it was back onto the horse, and back onto FIFA20.

With renewed zest!

Regular readers may be familiar with an annual phenomenon that visits these parts: my early summertime slump. This is a period when I seem to be coasting through with perfunctory posts (occasionally no posts at all) and a diminished appetite for the beautiful virtual game.

It’s just one of the features of my football game year. I always, always, always have a slump from around mid-May to around mid-June – plus/minus a week or two either way. I can’t ever have the same intensity all year round

And then around about late June, early July, I do seem to get my second wind, and I’m all fired up again and enthusiastic while everyone else is mostly ‘meh’ until September.

And it’s happened. I’ve got my second wind now. A few weeks of long working hours and an enforced break from the PC for days at a time have helped to re-whet my appetite.

I’m back again with the feeling that sitting with a joypad in hand, playing a digital football game on a screen, is the best possible way to pass time.

FIFA20 is back at full throttle. It never went away. I bet many a regular reader thought they saw the signs of a wobble, and an imminent return to PES, or somesuch – but it’s been a peculiar year so far, an exceptional year, as you may have noticed. PC gaming. FIFA. A Pandemic.

Thumbnail catchup: Season 4 has seen me hit a difficulty dilemma.

World Class is much too hard for me with my modest skills and modest squad – and I am not complaining about the latter. The slow growth of the squad is one of FIFA20’s great delights. Really having time to bed in with a club, and a squad, and get to know players, is a refreshing change from the frenetic pace of Master League career growth in the benighted modern era of the other series.

World Class too hard. 5-0 thumpings at the hands of a rampant AI are routine. Only a matter of time before a sacking.

Professional difficulty, though, is too easy. 3-0 wins are routine. I have to be really sloppy to concede a goal, never mind lose or draw a match.

I was starting to consider the use of sliders as a difficulty modifier, either in the direction of making Professional a touch harder, or World Class a touch easier.

Then I remembered the Assisted/Semi settings for passing and shooting. If you go back to FIFA09 on this blog, you’ll remember the images that, ah, ‘grace’ this post.

Et voilà, all sorted. I now have a happy halfway house between Professional and World Class. Played 8, Won 3, Drawn 3, Lost 2. Goals are precious and celebration-worthy. Possession is sacred. And there is so much else still to come.

Here is the first full match I played with the settings. I’m well aware that few readers will watch all of this, so I have cherry-picked the most interesting moments and linked them separately below.

The first few minutes show me swapping my settings, and then my learning curve between Assisted and Semi-Assisted. And don’t worry, I eventually change the crowd-bothering camera setting too.

Also, apologies for the 720p setting. No idea why this massive 8GB 1440p-quality file defaulted to 720p as the max setting. Completely random.

THE HIGHLIGHTS:

My First Proper Shot Using Semi-Assisted

Does this show just how decadent full Assisted settings make us, or what? The crazy thing is that with Assisted settings on, that shot would have been on-target.

A Great Moment For FIFA Realism

When my player gets the ball on the wing, watch my striker in the middle tussling with the defender. I trust the reader will enjoy the outcome as much as I did.

My First Goal With Assisted Shooting

After the fiasco of my previous shot from this sort of distance, I had no expectation that this would go anywhere near the goal. But I reduced the ‘aiming lozenge’ (blast from the past there) and in it rocketed.

I forgot I was recording this match and went into the replay and fiddled about looking for the best view of the goal, thinking to make a standalone goal highlight, before I remembered. Duh.

–————————————-

And finally, here is a brief video I put together showing a snippet of PES2014 in action on the PC.

Why, you might ask? Why?

After seeing the EvoWeb discussion this week I felt all warm and fuzzy inside.

I felt inspired to revisit a game that still lights a burning candle in my heart, not least because I despised it upon its first appearance (horrific release, truly horrific). PES2014 remains widely disdained by the football-gaming community, unjustly so, which gives PES2014-love a bit of sub-cultural cache.

By then I’d played FIFA20 with my new Semi settings and wanted to see how PA1 on PES2014 stacked up.

Mainly though this short clip shows off one of the best things about the PC as a gaming platform.

It wasn’t long before I applied Reshade to PES2014, and well, you can see the results for yourself. The flips between Reshade On/Reshade Off are pretty obvious.

This video, thankfully, plays at 1440p:

I don’t think I could go back to playing with the washed-out colours you see at the start, before application.

As for the wonderful Semi-Assisted passing and shooting – FIFA20 does it. FIFA has always done it – FIFA invented it. The lozenges say so.

Updated: 26th June 2020 — 11:36

31 Comments

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  1. Touching on that pes 2014 video, I’d argue it looks better slightly washed out. It has a more authentic champions league evening game feel about it, the Reshade just amps up the saturation, which isn’t always a good thing. Just look at pes 2020.

  2. Tommy – my first encounter with Reshade I more or less thought the same – cartoony, etc – but time changes taste and mine has, and the Reshade look is infinitely preferable to me now. The unmodified look looks like a black and white movie to me now. How quickly I became a proper PC graphics snob!

    Also remember this wasn’t me actually changing any settings in Reshade. I basically just turned it on and got the result seen. There are all manner of knobs and buttons to twist in it.

  3. Reshade isn’t just an amping of saturation, far from it.
    My own custom ReShade setting for FIFA 20 uses Vibrance, chromatic filtering, Adjustive sharpening, Gamma isolation, and a fine tuning of various colour channels, to give what looks like a proper vibrant, bursting, realistic UHD broadcast of a live game on Sky in 4K, none of this bland, washed out, sepia like, detail diluted rubbish that game devs insist on setting as the default colour pallette.

  4. Paul – Did you ever capture before and after screen shots to show your tweaks?

  5. Certainly watching the semi assisted/manual venture with interest as I will go there at some point on world class. Maybe if I get promoted to the Premership at some point.

    Season 2 has now come to a close and finished 7th and 10 points behind the play off spots. Very good season all round but conceded to many sloppy goals. Looking forward to the next season as I feel I have brought in some quality that will allow me to push for a play off spot.

  6. In the context of it’s the best football game I’ve played there are still some things I’m not keen on with world class…

    The 50/50s are more like 95/5s. I was so fed up of being knocked off the ball I bought a monster, and he goes the same way. Shawcross at stoke shouldn’t be bumped aside by a small centre forward.
    Corners, free kicks, penalties are too fiddly for the reward they should bring. A free kick on the edge of the box is really not that much use to me because of the St. Vitus’ dance aiming marker.
    I have to change player control constantly. The Auto switching seems pretty poor to me.

    Any tips from you more seasoned players to improve this. I’m at the stage where I’m going to abandon stoke and start lower down the leagues – maybe div 1.

    And the constant references to certain clubs by the commentary is embarrassing. Leeds every five mins, ‘they’d have been expected to challenge but they’ll not be happy’ (they’re second). Not even half a season in and apparently there are vacancies at Leeds, Chelsea, villa, Liverpool (!), half a dozen other PL and Championship clubs, but nowhere else in the world. And I’ve been offered four international jobs.

  7. Are there any PES 2020 PC players here before I go trawling through the forums? I’ve done a very stupid thing and picked up the game on steam. It was relatively cheap, but would be good to know if there are any good gameplay mods in existence…? Reduce the scripting and there might even be a good game underneath.

  8. Turf – I have been playing on World Class now for 2 seasons and have to say I am in agreement with you. The defending is just so random, in particular the player switching. One game it all works as it should do and the next the switching goes all over the place and you find yourself switching two or three times, before you get the player you intended to switch to. By this time it is to late. With every other FIFA I have always chosen Air Balls only switch setting. This year I have had to go with Auto switching, even though it isn’t my favourite it does keep the goals I concede down a little bit.

  9. Yes, that’s it Darryl, it can suddenly jump from the centre back you want to the other one who is marking the striker. Mind I’m only half a season in so I’m persisting. Mid table looking best.

    Btw I know how much NG likes reminding humanity how much he dislikes them, and this weekend I was reminded of the special place in hell for one particular group – the Glastonbury shoulder sitting arm wavers. Just how selfish do you have to be to insist someone supports you while you block half a dozen people’s view just so you can get yourself above everyone else. I despise them.

  10. Tommy – I think of the regular commenters only #1 is still playing PES2020, and the last I heard he was trying out a new gameplay mod that he swore actually delivered on the fouls front. A claim I always have the same type of scepticism towards that we all had in March for that one person who knew for a fact the Army was about to mobilise for martial law, etc.

    Uncle Turf/Darryl – I’ve never noticed any controller selection issues at all, and it can’t all be down to the PC platform and the extensive mods that I’m playing with, as there have been 2 or 3 longish periods in all this when the mods were broken and I played sessions of the unmodded version quite happily without issues as well.

  11. I don’t suffer any issues with player switching either.
    I have men set to assisted switching, and then use the right stick to flick between other players and use the sewcondary press button in conjunction, works well for me, also a must is make sure the switching is set to player relative, not ball relative.

    Chris99 – I can and will take a before ReShade and after Reshade screenshot, the difference is remarkable, I’m sure Ng will testify to this having recently commented he could never play a game again with Reshade enabled.

    will post up later

  12. Turf, some tips:

    For 50/50’s using the L2 button is essential, this is your ‘physicality’ btton, it will make your player protect the ball, and lean in to the other player, so many tussles when ive played a ball through on goal, using L2 with my CF who’s running on to the ball, holds off the opposition player, same down the wings, in defence, its a must-use tactic.

    I do find Corners a bit hit and miss, the presets are often useless, I tend to select a player to play the ball to, then power up to 75% for a lower driven corner and apply RS curl to it, aim for the penalty spot away from the keeper, often results in a mellee for the ball, also when the ball is in the air, using the L2 button again (see above) to jostle for posiition and helps win the ball, timing oof the header/shot is crucial too, no banking a header like in PES.

    Also using R1 to trigger a short corner works well.

    Free kicks are fairly easy, but not easy to score, pick a player with good FK accuracy and curl stats, aim about 3 yards outside the post, power up to around 2 bars, then if you are shooting with say a Right footed player, after powering up, rotate the RS from the bottom (6 o clock) position, around through 3 o clock, to 12 o clock (anti-clockwise) and if you have applied curl correctly, the aiming marker will turn to a side pointing arrow in direction you have curled it. takes some practice but once used to the RS manouvers, you can get 90% of shots on target.

  13. I get how switching works and the various switching options as I have tried them all throughout my FIFA years. I am of the opinion that it is a vital tool of the scripting and doesn’t work as well as it should when the game wants you to lose matches.

  14. Darryl – as I said, I never have an issue with switching, auto-switch is pretty intelligent and if I want to flick back 2 or 3 players to cover passing lanes etc then I just flick the RS between players, I have never conceded a goal because the switching hasn’t worked.

    Playing on Legendary currently, where if anywhere the scripting should be more apparent, but it isn’t, I lose games because the AI is more clever, dribbles past me, shoots from distance, etc, haven’t yet experienced any ‘cheating’ although I haven’t reached the fab,ed Christmas period yet where things get noticeably tougher.

  15. Darryl – FIFA quietly has a strong scripting element, most noticeably for me if I am a goal up, the game will quite blatantly misdirect my passes away from my players and to the CPU, recover the ball, and have itself an attack. One of PES’s favourite scripting tricks is also one of FIFA’s. I’m aware of all ‘arguments from context’ against the idea that this is scripting – i.e. that it realistically represents the heightened anxiety of a team defending a narrow lead against a determined opponent, etc. – but you know in your bones when a football game is up to shenanigans behind the scenes, and FIFA certainly has its own shenanigans going on.

    Have to say though that 90% of all games lost and goals conceded are because of my poor play. And of that 90%, maybe half is because I STILL have PES ‘daddy issues’ with the way I approach things. A month ago that figure was higher though so I am getting there.

    Chris99 – one of the great pleasures of PC gaming are the enhanced visual options for me. Gameplay trumps graphics of course, but if you can have both, why not. And the Reshade possibilities enable any level of control from slight barely noticeable tweak, all the way to Wizard of Oz-like Technicolor transformation. FIFA is a success in a switch of gaming, but the PC is proving a smash-hit as a switch of platform.

  16. Any PC Whizzes out there have any advice?
    Suddenly, never did it before, can only assume it was after a dreadd windows update, If I boot the PC up and load up FIFA right away, its all loads up full screen fine, but if I do anything such as browse files, use a web browser, anything, then load FIFA, it only loads up in a small windowed screen.

    I try pressing the ALt=Enter keys for forcing the FIFA window full screen, but it just beeps at me and does nothing, I have to shut FIFA down, reboot the PC then fire FIFA up and it is back to fullscreen again.

    The FIFA config is set to full screen, as it always has been.

    Any Ideas?

  17. Paul – weird one, all part of the random weirdness of the platform of course, many’s the time my ‘rig’ does the equivlaent of making me pat my head and rub a circle on my belly before it’ll do something it’s been doing without complaint until now… No idea in this instance. Have you installed the latest GeForce update?

  18. NG – think I may have sorted it, amended the FIFASETUP.ini file to force the resolution.
    Still get the erratic controller in the menus if i Alt Tab away from FIFA and come back, have to close the game and restart it as it flicks between tiles erratically and you cant get to the advance button.

    Chris99 – As promised, Reshade screens.

    View post on imgur.com

    View post on imgur.com

  19. Paul – there’ll still be something , somewhere, causing the controller issue for you after you alt-tab, I don’t get that at all. I occasionally see the selection flick one to the left or right after I’ve alt-tabbed, but nothing like your issue. Could be a controller brand issue, could be a driver issue (either way, I.e. you’ve updated yours and I haven’t, or vice versa), could be a hardware thing with your individual setup, or mine, etc. etc.

    A few weeks ago I had a random glitch where my Reshade kept flicking off and on on its own at random (the problem mysteriously went away after a few minutes and never recurred) so I played most of a match alternating between default and Reshaded, and it was shocking how drab the original looked – and even that original isn’t bad at all.

    I had Reshade settings turned way up on my PES2014 demo above, your settings are nice and subtle.

    There’s no downside to PC gaming other than the occasional weird apparently random glitches you get.

  20. Paul – Are you sure your screenshots shouldn’t be titled “No sunglasses” and “Sunglasses”?

  21. Chris99 – those screenshots were taken with summer settings, clear skies, afternoon KO, and they aren’t over-saturated or harsh at all, they look bright, vibrant and as youd expect a match to look, not the drab dull originals on show.

  22. NG – I’m using a XBOX ONE licensed controller, not original XBOX/MS, a 3rd party, controller works perfectly in any other game, except this issue with FIFA20, its all over the EA forums, apparently has been an issue in previous FIFA’s too.
    Thy say moving the mouse pointer to top left corner of screen sorts it out, but it doesn’t, and I’ve never managed to get DS4 working with the PS4 Controller.

  23. I installed some highly rated graphics update on Skyrim and immediately deleted it. Bloody awful bright things everywhere. Surely a big attraction of the world is it’s subtle washed out tones.

    I checked my settings and I didn’t have some of the things mentioned enabled, and there were a couple of others I’ve altered, without touching sliders. Happy with tele broadcast unless advised better. I’ve opted to stay in the championship but restarted as Blackburn, for no reason other than low expectations – the way I was going stoke would have sacked me. I really hated how the game kept banging on about Leeds though, and the international job offers had got ridiculous – one a month at least. Does anyone bother with press conferences or after match? They are so dull but morale seems useful?

  24. Uncle Turf – I have taken to skipping press conferences 9 times out of 10. The 1 in 10 is usually when morale has taken a hit through bad results. Which seems like a gamey use of the feature, so I might just skip all of them.

    Disagree about Skyrim and the appearance of the world. One of the things I have against the fantasy genre as a whole is its drab washed-out look. As an amateur medievalist (it’s a thing) I know at least that the generic pseudo-mediaeval setting of all fantasy is based on a world that was just as bright and colourful as our world today. Contrast with sci-fi and the bright snazziness, lens flare, neon glow etc. That’s the other extreme but I do like the look of some of the Skyrim PC mods out there. Maybe one day when FM2019 and FIFA and XCOM aren’t so much of a thing (still an obsession that only gets bigger – I’ve just taken Carlisle to the top of League 2, and I want more).

    Paul – as ever there will be some reason why I don’t get the issue with my controller, my PC hardware, my settings, etc. etc. but that’s PC gaming, ultimately we just want to get on and play. E.g. I’m still happily using the custom script I made to record snippets without taking my fingers off the controller, but you never got it working. I bet you could, but it’s a time trade-off. Do you want to spend an hour ‘fixing’ the controller problem and the replay script shortcut problem, or do you want to play, etc.

  25. Was that an auto correct NG? Surely you meant ‘as a meddling amateurist’…I know what you’re saying, I remember being blown away when I heard that roman statues were garish bright coloured things, it’s just the Skyrim most popular graphics patch was like fairy dust maxed up to 10. All bright green glades and shiny interiors. I not like.

    In fact I don’t like either of Paul’s images. I think I’d go with reshade but dial the tv down a few notches. Just too much colour. (Which I always find a fascinating idea – how do we know that what Paul sees is what we see? That viral dress showed that in its most basic detail).

  26. Having watched the football tonight I now reckon those images should titled Sky and Amazon.

  27. NG – Trade off fidling with PC is right, I’m happy to press ALt&S for a screen grab or Alt&R for a recording on the wireless keyboard thats sat on sofa right next to me when I play, but appreciate your offering of the script and one day maybe I’ll tinker and get it working.

    Meant to mention, we had a discussion a while back about fitting a SS to the PC, well i did it, like you said, removing non-glass side to reveal all the componenets and cables, but was a lot more fiddly than you said it would be.

    I had a multitude of spare cables that came with my Corsair 750W modular PSU, all power related cables, but no Sata 3 cable, so my mate dropped a couple round, I was then able to connect the SSD to the Sata cable which went into the motherboard, job done, but the power….
    The PSu was so tightly packed in and with its thick cables I had no leeway to get to any spare PSU ports, so had to remove the adjacent 3.5″ HD caddy, by unmounting the bottom screws, take it out, then undo the chassis screws and remove the PSU unit, plug my SSD into a spare PSU port, then remount it along with the HD Caddy.

    I then didnt have any SSD bracket mounting screws, so instead just used velcro adhesive strips to stick the SSD to the mounting bracket inside the case.

    After all that, fired up the PC, but no new drive, had to go into disk utility, and mount the new drive as a new volume, and assign it a drive letter/name, once I did all that and rebooted, it was fine, brand new E:\Game Data drive of 1TB of fast SSD space.

  28. Turf/Chris99 – It’s down to personal preference, personally if i’m watching a football game in summer, in sunny bright skies, in 4k on TV, I want to see the bright virant colours of the stadium, the lush green turf, and the contrasts between objects, and for me thats what me ReShade settings give me, and as they are adaptive, it applies equally well to cloudy, moody dark skies, night matches and in-between.

    What I don’t want is a summery clear day to look a dusky sandstorm ridden yellow tinged blandscape as it looks with the default settings, if thats what you prefer then so be it, all down to preference and whether realism is a preference or not.

    Turf – Telecam is horrible. looks like the game is being played on hereford Utd’s pitch, for those of you that have never played on it, it is on a huge slope, almost like a chicane, the title is huge, and thats how Telecam looks, an unnatural slope to the view, andhardly any of the superb stadium detail on show, again though, if thats what you prefer, all personal preference.

  29. Paul – sounds about right with the PC experience, it does tend to depend on how the manufacturer has packed the components and arranged the cables. When I opened up mine, to fit a graphics card, the knock-on effect of eveeything else I had to do first was quite profound. There was no cable and no spare power socket, and it turned out no spare power, so I needed a new power supply, which wasn’t as bad as it sounds (easier than your SSD install sounds!) but still more than I was ready for.

    Velcro-ing an SSD to the chassis is quite common I hear. Some just leave a new SSD dangling in midair in the case, from the cable. My SSD came with four little screws and there happened to be relevant-looking holes for them on the case, so I just screwed it to them and it’s been fine.

    And it’s annoying how HD suppliers tend not to send the needed cables with the product anymore – they used to, so you hear a lot on relevant forums from old-timers that the cables will be coming with the new drive, and some do, but most don’t.

    When I took the side panel off mine everything was neatly packed and coiled and taped off. It’s not now. I barely got the panel back on.

  30. NG – It was neatly packed but so many thick PSU cables that the nearest spare PSU port was on the other side, buried under all the cables, so the only way to get to it was to remove several components. And like you I struggled to get the case back on all neat and tody, its probably bulging a bit on that side now.

    My next task is to fit a 32GB RAM stick, should be straightforward, its on the easy access glass side and will just click in.

    The SSd I bought was an Aseeno 1TB SSD HD, a fraction of the price of the entry level Samsung evo drives, but outperforms the Samsung in nearly every category on benchmark tests. I think 1TB SSD was £80.

  31. Paul – I’m actually afraid of taking off the side panel again as I know everything will just spill out… The RAM job really will be as easy as plugging in a USB stick. As ever, I’m jealous as I’m stuck with a 16GB max motherboard. The upgrade there for me actually wouldn’t be too tricky, just a question of making time. I’ll do it when I feel I have to. The PC’s been running lovely and smooth and quiet over the past few chilly days!

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