Season 3 has wound to a finish. I dashed for the line in the end, playing the last 12 or so matches across two sessions close together. Setting aside some growing concerns about where the mature PES2017 gameplay is headed, I enjoyed an exhilarating run-in where I was nip-and-tuck with Aston Villa at the top of the table for the last few matches. I never managed to overhaul them, but kept getting close. Of course on the last day it was still all to play for, as it so often is in Master League.
I have a tradition in PES of going up in 2nd place, and for the longest time it seemed that would be how it’d go again. I met Cardiff in the last match and they were tough. I was behind twice, and fortunate to come away with the draw.
At the final whistle my team celebrated and I knew I’d won the league. A special feeling, particularly as it’s something I rarely do. 90% of my promotions in PES have been in 2nd, so this was special.
I was festooned with garlands:
The roll of honour
Look at the kerning on GALLARJO between the R and the J. Shudder.
Only 3 players in the Team of the Tournament, though – about right, I’d say. Rice was a great performer for me again but he missed about 7 matches through suspensions.
That £18m of made-up money I spent on Friday pre-season was money very well spent.
And finally some highlights from my run-in – can you guess what my favourite goal is from these? It’s not the one you think…
No, it’s not the Son rasper from 30 yards, although I liked that too (his first contribution of note since returning from that December training injury). Lescott’s scissors kick (and it is a scissors kick, not a bicycle kick) is also nice, but not something I felt particularly exultant over. Him kissing the screen was a surprise though.
My favourite goal in this clip is Cahill’s slotted finish from 0:55. It seems so straightforward, but I needed a goal like that. It came at a time when I was getting really pissed-off with Top Player’s fast and furious nature. I just wanted to put my foot on the ball and play a killer pass, and I did so.
I do end Season 3 on a high – with some misgivings, but on a high. This Master League is the best we’ve had since PES2012.
I’m looking forward to the Premier League, and to what will probably be an immediate transition to Superstar.
I’ve decided not to spend any more time on Top Player unless I have to.
I only moved up from Professional to Top Player mid-season, so my switch up now to Superstar is sudden – but necessary.
I’ve found Top Player to be extremely fast and furious, making PES2017 seem a lot more like PES2016 than I ever want it to be.
From that mid-season point onward, fouls all but disappeared completely from my game. Around 60% of my matches now end with no fouls against me at all. The remaining 40% end with a token 1 or 2. I never have any matches with more than that now. Rivals matches are the worst for this, as I believe the game represents the famous ‘referee showing a bit of common sense’ and hardly awards any fouls at all.
Low-fouls and no-fouls matches are typically insane, frantic, end-to-end affairs that have little deep interest for me. I never finish a fouls-free game thinking ‘what fun that was! the action neva stopped!!!’
I want and need PES2017 to go back to being the stellar 9/10 game I was playing a season or so ago. The means a game that can be fast and slow. That features regular stoppages in play. Where I’m discouraged from sprint-sliding all over the place as my number 1 mode of defence. I’m hoping the Premier League on Superstar will make the second half of Season 3 on Top Player seem like an anomaly.