So I’m back in the Premier League, and after a couple of seasons of non-traditional kits, I’m back in orthodox Sky Blue. Complete with an authentic (yes, that word again) 2012-2013 real-life PNG overlay. Credit for that to regular commenter Paul, who takes any reasonable requests over at PES Ultra.
Another commenter, Werd Llitrah, recently mentioned the old yellow Coventry City strip featuring the justly infamous late-70s/early 80s tramlines. That set me thinking. I still had Paul’s other PNG overlay sitting around from last year, and it’s not time yet to revisit the brown kit, so…
And thus kitted out, I set forth into the wilds of season 5.
The last time I paid a visit to the Premier League I was relegated immediately. I mistakenly went up to Top Player, enjoyed a single good opening session, but duly suffered the ignominy of near-total obliteration in session after session thereafter.
I went back to Professional after relegation, and on Professional I will now stay for another season at least, and probably longer.
I sold a few players pre-season. My new-look First XI and full squad is on the right.
Rafael went. Mehmedi went. Gellazca followed. I got a nice price for Berengeur. All in all, I built up a nice little nest-egg of around £7,000,000. I went shopping.
But there were no goods to be found anywhere. The only players I could have signed were like ones I already had. The bigger, better players were all way out of my reach. 1% and 2% likelihood of success.
Back to my own resources. The Youth list.
Iyaghsek (or whatever his name is) retired. I picked up a replacement GK from the Youth list. While I was there I helped myself to Hugo Leal at DMF as a straight replacement for Berengeur. I also signed Lurling. The main thing here was to bulk out my sparse squad.
I had some cash left over, but decided to sit on that for emergencies. At the end of this season, if my ranking goes up, I’ll spend the money then—and get players for season 6. I do find that I’m looking two seasons ahead in this Master League. As and when my ranking rises enough for me to be able to sign some better players, I want to have a nice little nest-egg ready to go.
The season kicked off and… it has been tough. Professional remains a highly competitive difficulty level for me, make no mistake. Here is the table—which looks rather alarming on the face of it:
That is indeed the bottom half of the table, and that is not a good start from yours truly.
But I’m not downcast. I’ve been consciously playing very loose-aggressive (in poker terms) from the start of these matches, trying to force things, and it’s not working. My approach will change—has already changed, with good results.
I had success in PES2012 when I started playing that game tight-passive, i.e., setting out to nullify the CPU with defensive tactics designed to get a 0-0, and then taking any scraps that fell my way (and they often did). In that way I imposed some discipline on the essentially chaotic, utterly unfair world of PES.
I am and remain at peace with the gameplay. Not for me the Dark Nights of the PES Soul that seem to be coming along all too frequently for so many. I think PES2013 plays a wonderful game of football.
It probably helps that PES is just one of three games I’m playing right now in roughly equal measure. The other two help to modify my attitude and perceptions.
Those other two games are Football Manager 2010 and Dwarf Fortress. Compared to the different demands of that pair, PES2013 is relaxing and soothing—even at its cheatiest worst.
And there is no doubt that PES2013 often plays most foully.
I went behind to Newcastle early on, but I dominated play thereafter, and then agonisingly squeezed myself back into the match midway through the second half.
Plenty of time left for me to get a much-needed winner, I thought.
But no—immediately after kickoff, and until the end of the match, the CPU flipped into some kind of powerplay mode. Now that it was 1-1, I couldn’t pass or dribble, suddenly. I went the whole of the rest of match without making a single chance, having made chances galore whilst 0-1 down. It was a stage-managed 1-1 draw. I really felt that.