I, the worst of all

I’ve often labelled myself an average player of PES, but this takes the cake. Or the biscuit, or whatever. It’s my worst ever start to a Master League. I have played 24 matches, in which I have scored 5 goals. That’s FIVE goals. In TWENTY-FOUR matches. It’s the worst record in the division by a long way. And the worst in my whole ML history by some way.

Perhaps I’m really a below-average player. Perhaps I’m the worst player ever to pick up a joypad. I don’t know yet. People are saying PES2010 is a tragically easy PES, but I’m not finding Master League that way—for now.

I’ve just had a 7-match session where I didn’t score a single goal, and created very little opportunity to score one. I suppose this is what Master League is all about—getting through and enduring the tough times at the start, feeling your way towards the tipping-point. I wish that point would hurry up.


The way the CPU plays is a big factor contributing to my non-form. It plays keep-ball sometimes to a ludicrous extent, literally ping-ponging the ball in midfield for 10 or 15 or 20 in-game minutes at a time. I’ve experienced massive frustration at being unable to get the ball.

Putting on the squeeze (i.e., sprint-clamping, or double-pressuring, or the Claw, or whatever you want to call it—its names are Legion) doesn’t help. It just makes the frustration mount, because you automatically feel that it should get the ball back sooner or later (which is why we all do it). Sometimes it does , but more often it doesn’t. The best thing to do is relax, loosen your death-grip on the sprint+tackle buttons, and wait for a natural opportunity to win back the ball as play ebbs and flows around you.

The Defaults are the worst ever. I say this every year, but it’s truer than ever this year. Schwarz, after a promising start, is so far proving to be just another Default-style striker. He’s got a peculiar style of running when he’s tired or out of form that makes him look like a bird with an injured wing. It really winds me up and he’s straight off the pitch when it happens. I also drafted Shimizu from my Youth squad, and he’s been disappointing as well.

I never have a full squad of in-form players. Blue and Purple down-arrows are the norm for most of the squad most of the time. Some players are permanently on purple down-arrows. There’s no more ‘Regulate Condition’ option either. You’re stuck with the arrows you’re given.

In previous PES games I’d never play a blue- or purple-arrowed player under any circumstances. In PES2010, I often take to the field with half a team of blue-arrowed players, and count myself lucky. An alarming amount of the time there’s no choice but to play with a couple of purple-arrowed players. No doubt upgrading my coaches and medical staff at the next opportunity (only at the end of every season) will alleviate the issue. That’s become a high priority now, higher than getting new players.

I sold a lot of players in the mid-season negotiation period. The first thing to note here is that this hallowed period is no longer a set-in-stone chunk in the middle of the season. You can initiate deals and have them accepted at any time of the season.

It felt weird at first to be still negotiating transfers after the first official window had shut. Any players bought or sold don’t actually move until the next transfer window, so the essence of the system is preserved. Still, it saves you a lot of time when the official window does roll around, and it also lets the new Scouting mechanic really work as intended.

Castolo—who has been more of a myth than an actual player for several PESes now—was the first to go. I was delighted to be deluged with offers for him, and for so many others. I could have sold 15 players if I’d wanted to. I got rid of so many so quickly that I can’t remember who they were. El Moubarki. The Van one—what’s-his-name, Van den Berg, yes, him too.

There were more than a few whom I initially baulked at selling. I was offered £600,000 for Jaric. Good old Jaric, one of the best Defaulters without question. His value was only around £50,000. I was being offered more than ten times that. Every player has his price. I thought about how I would start to pay for all my expensive backroom staff upgrades further down the line. It was an offer I couldn’t refuse.

I also sold Zamenhof, Libermann, Stein, Fouque, and Huylens. I only bought one player—a decent AMF called Antonio Hidalgo who, at 31 years of age, is a typical early-stage ‘make-do’ player for me in ML. I stopped it all there, as my squad was now at 24 players and for me that’s the optimum size. I don’t like to drift too far either way.


I’ll finish with today’s Net of the Day. Today’s net (left) is my very own Coventry side’s home-stadium net. I just love these tiger stripes. The colouring at least will likely change, as I plan to go for a very different home kit next season.

All in all, next season—or at least the end of this season—cannot come soon enough. As I mentioned a few posts ago, I’ve never really enjoyed these early stages of a Master League. I think my move to Top Player came too soon. I will definitely drop down to Professional at the end of the season. Or actually,.. why wait? You can now change difficulty level at any time in Master League, not just between seasons. So I have done so, and am now playing on Professional. I wonder if it’ll make any difference to my wretched form.


  1. Hard Luck on your poor form. I started of quite well compared to what i usually do, often stringing together beautiful passing moves.The highlight of my season was a beautiful Castolo chip (Yes I know…) over the keeper from 25 yards out. I was struggling for goals though. At the start of the Window I was 15th- Not too bad compared to what I usually manage. The second half of the season was just awful though, I was getting soundly beaten on a regular basis- unable to escape my own half. Eventually I picked up a win- My most satisfying win yet- In the 1st half of the season If i had won there might be a niggling worry about the difficulty in the long run. I no longer worry about the difficulty. I worry about going on such a bad run of form like that ever again. Just like the old days…
    Personally I never use the claw. I cover passing options, and do my best to block incoming crosses. Pressure is only used when a play receives the ball with his back to goal, usually I win the ball on such occasions. I employ ‘Defenceless Defence’ as you once called it.
    I wouldn’t say the defaults are the worse ever- I personally believe they were the worst ever in Next Gen PES 08. That was because that game was so flawed, Scripting was terrible, Passing was pointless and ineffective, and the game forced you to ‘super-dribble’. Grrr. As I said before, I don’t think Schwarz is the same Schwarz we’ve always had, or at least develops at a worse rate. His identity and appearance is just a placeholder, a container, for something much different. Although I do believe with a proper coach and proper Youth team coach, he could develop into the superstar he used to be. Ditto to all the other Youth Players.
    The form arrows work quite well in my opinion. When your down in the dumps, it just gets worse, you have to scrap your way back. Good form is difficult to maintain with a Level 1 Athletic Coach, which I presume you have. When your Athletic Coach upgrades i believe you will see your players maintain good form for longer.
    I’m surprised you sold Van den Berg. He’s a great utility player and can play in a number of positions without much of a stat penalty. More vital than ever this year. I wasn’t too surprised about Jaric. He’s way overrated (IMHO), his free kicks and Crossing ability is his only worthwhile attributes. His value isn’t actually £50,000, that’s the value of his wage, the money he deserves to be paid. Although £600,000 is still quite a massive fee, you can buy some good players if you look around, I search by ‘Openness to Negotiation’ and ‘transfer listed’ players, theres some real bargains to be found, you’ve got to be quick though.
    Sorry about the super-long post- there’s just soo much to talk about in ML this year!

  2. patrick222—I think you’re right about Jaric’s value. I no longer keep notes as I go along, so details like this are bound to be wrong quite a lot (it used to kill my immersion, having to stop to scribble things down). Thinking back, I think his value was in the £75,000 zone and his wage was £50k. Still a great deal though.

    Have you seen the free agents list yet? It’s tucked away, quite hard to find compared to previous years. There’s lots of bargains in there, as is traditional.

    The difficulty remains a worry for me I’m afraid. I’m struggling in Master League, but I’m playing an International Tournament as the Netherlands on Professional, and I’m winning every game comfortably 3-0 on average. I’m only playing the tournament to unlock the classic Dutch players and make Sir Dennis Bergkamp available, so it could be argued that I’m more relaxed, and that the Dutch players are superb technically anyway, but I don’t think it should be a walk in the park. I’ve yet to play the final, though, so I’ll see how that goes.

  3. Blimey, sounds like you’re having a tough time of things. I started a second traditional Master League with the defaults in Division 2. The ability to sign players at the start of the season proved very important as I managed to get Cattermole, Malbranque, Kerlon and some youth player called Oscar. All made the team better.

    I’m coming up to the halfway point and although i’m out of the cup, i’m 5 points clear at the top. Castolo has been a bit of a star – playing as a right winger. Has a few assists and even a couple of goals. I think since my Default challenge on PES 2009, i’m used to playing with crap players. Don’t score many goals, but the Jaric inspired defence is very tight.

    Surprised you sold Jaric, he’s one of the last to go for me. I also keep van den Berg for as long as possible as well.

    Hopefully this run is making you more determined rather than putting you off PES.

  4. Wow! sounds like a wretched time in the early days of your new ML career, isnt that what we expect though? torrid times with the default players… if i recall last year didnt it take something like 5 seasons to get promotion from Div 2?

    I bit the bullet and purchased PES10 friday afternoon, played a few exhibition games, a champions league tournament where I didnt escape the group stages and yesterday attempted to fire up a brand new ML mode.
    Firstly …. I chose PES united and started in Div 2 of the EPL (I have the WENB OF installed) but to my suprise, no Castolo, Huylens, Minanda et al… but a team of over 30year old unknowns….. i remember Not-Greg posting about how to choose classic players before but I didnt see the option!?! so now im stuck with PES united in a strip i dont like with a bunch of unknowns…. I have since quit my ML, edited PES utd into my trusty MK Warriors team with re-designed kits and sponsors etc and am due to start a fresh… IF i can find the classic players option.

    On a side note, as first impressions of PES… the presentation is top notch, gfx very nice, and the depth to the game is superb, I still have a few gripes and issues with actual gameplay, but rather than moan I will just accept it for what it is, typical old fun, superb, but sometimes annoying PES!

    As for the goal nets, as i said, I ahve the WENB Option File installed and I still get the fancy coloured nets, looks very swish, the bullet header i planted home in my first game looked great rippling a sleek black net, which accessorised my yellow/black away kit very nicely !!! 🙂

  5. Liam—every time I have a go at Castolo people say how great they’re finding him, but I just don’t see it and I think he’s a spent force, I really do. Okay he can be adequate and can sometimes do good things, but so can Macco, so can Burchet, so can Ximelez (much better in 2010 than ever, I find)! Castolo’s just one player among many nowadays, with only the myth to raise him up above the rest.

    But I can’t talk – I’m rubbish, as my record shows. It’s definitely not putting me off PES2010, quite the opposite. This kind of thing is the best of PES, right here.

    I’m very worried to hear about you being top and apparently finding it relatively easy. That’s exactly what I’m hearing across the forums. My struggles are very much in the minority. But that’s only on ML. On other modes I find the game disturbingly easy too. What kind of longevity will this game have?

  6. Paul—for how to get the Defaults, see the first paragraph of ‘The Setup’ section, at the start of my Master League 2010 post.

    Reading between the lines of your comment, I think you were struck—as I was, and still am—by how relatively primitive PES2010 feels next to FIFA10’s gameplay. (Is that fair?) With that gulf in quality of handling (and it breaks my heart to say that), the only thing PES2010 has going for it is Master League IMO (I’m not interested in online). And what a thing! As I’ve said before, if ML was a game released on its own without any other modes in it whatsoever, I’d still pay 40 quid for it.

  7. @patrick222…

    I am doing really well on my ML, I’m sitting top of the league after about 10 games and my form arrows are still either blue or purple, it does seem a bit Strange, surely if Im doing that well the arrows should be a bit better off?

    Is anyone finding getting in behind the defence rather difficult? Most of my goals have come from crosses/headers, I’d love to slide a ball through the defence and slot home a 1-one-1, it’s just not happening yet. Maybe that just how I play though?

    Change of topic, has anyone seen Guiterrez’s goal celebration? The Diomansy Kamara style hand shake by the ear type thing? Nice touch konami, very cool.

  8. Thats EXACTLY how I felt Not-Greg, after playing my first few hours on PES i was left a little dismayed at how it felt and played, even though id enjoyed the demo.
    I Fired FIFA up for a game and it just felt so silky smooth and sleek compared to PES, for many reasons I wont go into as its been done to death.
    I think we just have to accept them as two very stark, different games these days and enjoy each for their own qualities.

    I will refer back to your post, i do remember you saying the classic default players are hidden away, I was looking out for it too but must have missed it as I was trying to take in the new look and feel of ML.

    One thing I did notice with my very brief foray into ML (2 games worth) is that players stats were decreasing week by week, even after Id setup individual focus point allocations respectively. Is this normal?

    I will look forward to starting a new ML career with the defaults later this week, for now im concentrating on my MM career in FIFA, having been sacked as Liverpool boss (who said FIFA wasnt realistic) after a run of dismal results, and am now the proud manager of Dundalk Rovers in the Irish League!!!

  9. Aaron—the form arrows thing is related to your backroom staff. An upgrade or two should sort the problem out. I hate playing with blue- and purple-arrowed players, but it’s unavoidable at the start. Just one of many little changes from ML in the past, where you could always pretty much play with a team in positive form, even if they were knackered. Now the opposite is true.

    I’ve seen Gutierrez’s celebration a few times, I always love it when he scores. He’s the new Castolo for me—in a good way.

  10. Paul—the Defaulters aren’t hidden, it’s just that the option to choose them is easily overlooked on the team selection screen. It’s there though. Check that post, there’s a photo of the screen in question.

    My admiration for FIFA10 has only increased since PES2010 came along. I made a big fuss in the summer about not playing two football games, but now I find myself liking both games for different reasons and really wanting to play both games. But it’s impossible for me to do so, like trying to drive on the left one day and on the right the next.

    In ML some player stats will go down, seemingly no matter what you do. It’s a new system, possibly related to your backroom staff levels. The ones who decrease will all be old or poor players, Only your younger and better players will increase their stats. So I think at the moment anyway. I don’t know, but it’d make sense that if you max-out all you backroom staff then all players experience some growth until they naturally begin to decline in their later years. I’m ages from getting to that level…

  11. I’m definitely not finding it easy – just that my defence is holding up really well, and like I say – the Master Leag default challenge got me playing a certain way. Very little dribbling basically.

    Most of the victories are by 1-0, and it’s mainly due to the players that I brought in, rather than the trusty defaults.

  12. I had a similar type of experience, started the season winning losing and drawing, not really stringing any meaningful results, then it happened,I won eleven on the spin,not beating any one convincingly but the goals were flowing which made me think this is too easy,I took a break and came back to it last night…out of the last 15 games of the season i won 2 games losing most, and some 4 or 5 -0, I wondered if this was the scripting kicking in as with one game to go i was one point off the play offs and low and behold my last game is against the team in 3rd place, i beat them convincingly 4-1. In my last in the previous 3 games i hit the post 6 times in total, in my 11 game winning streak those type of shots were flying in……not sure what to make of it but it has certainly brought me back to re thinking my game plan

  13. After spending the last few weeks in Defualt Hell, I’m seriously considering not giving them a go with my first 2010 ML.

    The game releases tomorrow, and while I have the first two seasons of my Emil AC story in the can (to borrow a film-making phrase), my guess is that once 2010 arrives on these shores, I’ll want to spend at least a couple weeks kicking the new Master League tires.

    Maybe not with the Defaults, though, as I feel I’m paying those dues (or paying for their sins) in my other story!

    Hopefully ML stays this tough throughout — it’d be nice to have a challenging ML this year.

  14. Liam—it’s the consistency of the reports on the forums, right from day 1, that I find disturbing. Coupled with my own findings when I had my few days of playing cup modes with ‘proper’ teams, and it adds up to a worry. I’m pretty sure it’s not just fashonable PES-bashing making people say the game is too easy on Top Player. I just worry, as I remember what happened to PES2008 (next-gen), and it wasn’t pretty.

  15. jamie—while I’m getting routinely outplayed and outscored by the CPU I’m happy enough.

    I;ve noticed the hitting-the-post thing too, and don’t know what to make of it. But like I always say, “let’s see what we think in January”. Okay so I’ve never actually said that exact thing before, and even if I had it’s not much of a catchphrase, but I stand by the principle.

  16. ck—I recommend you drop in on the 2010 Defaults at some point, for professional interest and curiosity if nothing else. With the 2010 handling they do handle very differently and some of them have been boosted, others nerfed. I think Ximelez is a fairly decent player this year, and I’ve never liked Ximelez. (Ximenez, now, was another matter.)

    All in all, with the Youth squad and everything, I think your Default challenge (so like the One City Challenge in Civilization, if you’ve ever played that series) would be just as viable and challenging in its own way in PES2010.

    Are you getting the game tomorrow or waiting for the weekend? Whichever it is, have a happy PES day. It only comes once a year…

  17. Are you getting the game tomorrow or waiting for the weekend?

    Interestingly, I got paid today. As a freelancer, I honestly never know when my invoices will come back, and lately with the down economy things have been a bit sluggish. I’m not at the panhandling for beer money phase yet, but I had considered postponing the PES 2010 purchase to save some money for . . . honestly, beer . . . and the wife’s tuition. 🙂

    But the PES Gods were with me, and two checks came in the mail today, all but ensuring that come 10 am tomorrow, I will be standing outside my friendly local gaming store, crisp $60.00 in hand with that puppy-dog look.

    My Defaults blog is at the midpoint of season 1, but my gameplay is at the beginning of season 3, so it will continue for a couple more weeks even if PES 2010 consumes my gaming life. I have no plans to abandon the project, but I may put it on mothballs for a while, we shall see. 🙂

  18. Also, I wanted to throw it out there that I’m really glad I haven’t been reading the forums. I generally prefer to form my negative opinions on my own. 🙂

    I’ll let you know what I think of the new PES, of course, and maybe come February, if we’re bored and playing FIFA all the time, we’ll mail each other our copies and find out once and for all if next-gen PES has any difference between regions!

  19. Well I’ve begun my Master League and I’m loving it after an initial post FIFA adjustment but I’m thinking of starting afresh after a few games. I have filled my 2nd division with sides such as Porto, Zenit St Petersburgh and Rangers which has made things incredibly tough going.. to put things in perspective, Zenit just spent 6.5 mill on Utaka who obliterated my midfield in a 2-0 home defeat. I’m considering starting again with the standard D2 teams. I can’t decide at the moment but I also don’t want a 1st division full of foreign teams when it’s supposed to be the Premier League… I think i’d prefer a smattering of fictional sides. How are you finding life with Scaramtouche FC, not-Greg? Do you think it would be a wise move given your experiences?

  20. cklarock… I’m with you there – avoid the forums like a plague, they will ruin your gaming experience before it’s even started

  21. ck—all the best with it, and I have to say after a MAMMOTH 3-hour session this morning, it’s only now (after approx 20 hours in total) that I feel I’m settling down in the game. I’m not saying I’ve started having an easy—or even easier—time of it (I haven’t), just that I’m now starting to think “aaah, now I see what kind of Pro Evo this one is” and work with it rather thn trying to make it do the things PES2009 did all the time. In other words, I think it’s worth putting up with any early-stage troubles, if you have any.

  22. Chris—don’t go with the made-up teams, is my opinion. Stick with the Zenits and Portos, no matter how hard it gets. You wouldn’t find things easier with Galileo Fandango United et al, as they’re calibrated to offer the same challenge with an equivalent array of talent (as far as I can tell). But there’s just no feeling associated with them—for now. I’ll see how I feel about the likes of Quaztolla FC (a real made-up one there) after a few seasons when they’ll be more familiar. If this ML career turns out to be a long one, ten seasons or more, they inevitably would become part of the furniture, along with their players.

    Looked at in another way, I suppose I should be glad I’ve got the made-up teams, as it’s something different to contend with, the other divisions and leagues will all have ‘proper’ teams anyway and I’ll meet them all eventually (hopefully), and thus having the fictional teams here in D2 is just another milestone in the wacky world of Master League.

  23. I’m worried, I’m 20 games into my ML, starting in division 2 with teams such as Porto, Standard Leige, Celtic etc….I’ve only concended 5 goals all season on top player, that cannot be good. I’m going to stick at it and see what division 1 is like but I can see PES6 out of the corner of my eye just waiting for it’s chance to draw me back in with it’s superb-ness…

  24. Aaron—it’s a head-scratcher for me, as I simultaneously wonder if the game is imbalanced at higher difficulty levels, and also (if so) then what’s wrong with me, am I really so poor or do I somehow have a different configuration of settings, or what.

    The next week or so of posts are going to be embarrassing for me to post but I’ll post them anyway…

    p.s. since I went down to Professional difficulty I’ve noticed the AI attacks a lot more. It’s one of the ‘things people say’ on the lalalaing forums, true, but I have noticed it myself as well.

  25. @ Chris: This could apply to the internet, as well. 🙂

    @ not-Greg: That’s actually good to hear about Professional. Is the game more difficult due to the attacking AI, or does it become a bit easier in that they allow more space at the back.

    I’m a bit disappointed as I’d hoped the sliders would be the end-all-be-all that determines how the opposition team would attack. This would let the fan community customize the teams for endless variety of styles and play, a feature that might eventually be regarded as the best jewel in ML’s crown. It would certainly give the mode some shelf-life.

  26. ck—I don’t think there’s any need to be alarmed this early, but in any case I’m far from being an expert at PES2010’s potential (or lack of it) for customisation. I’ve not yet had a good look at the sliders. I’ve tinkered with them until I’ve found a setting I like, and left well alone since. I know that you love to put the hood up and get in there for a look-see and a tinker, and I think you’ll find a lot to interest you in the innards of PES2010 😉

  27. Just to chip in on the difficulty issue, I’ve just beaten Slavia Prague by the good old english score of 7-1 with Barcelona in the Champions League Mode. I was playing on Top Player in the group stages. Similar to yourself, I only regard myself as an average PES player, and I know I was Barcelona but this shouldn’t happen on Top Player.

    The only positive is it was 5-0 at half time and the second half was a lot more competitive, but in the first half i was walking the ball into the net, and with Messi I walked past the whole team.

    So disappointed that I switched it off and am going to play FIFA for the rest of the night. Not good!

  28. Well, with regards to difficulty, I haven’t played PES for 2 years, so maybe it’s a bedding in period, but with the defaults in Master League on Top Player, I’m really struggling – which is good!
    As already mentioned by not-Greg, standalone tournaments are very easy, especially with a good team – I won the Champions League with Liverpool the first time I picked the game up for 2 years on Top Player. But Master League is REALLY tough IMO, especially if you play with some top teams in D2. I used to destroy every team in Master League after 3 seasons in the PS2 incarnations of PES so, in my opinion, things have got a lot harder, including signing players – because there’s no way I’m going to winning the treble any time soon with Southport FC… not-Greg, you are not alone. I stink at this game, and I’m loving it

  29. RickH, do you not find FIFA to be very easy? I destroyed the A League with the Wellington Phoenix 2 seasons in a row on Legendary difficulty in my Manager Mode but can’t score a gaol for love nor money in Master League. i guess it’s down to personal skill… like anything. Are these people romping through D2 using the defaults on top player? I can’t believe anybody would find it too easy in the first season.

  30. RickH—was that on a 10-minute match? I found that the knockout stages of Champs League were a lot more competitive than the group games, but still easy. This kind of thing just wouldn’t have happened in years gone by.

    I’ve been holding off playing a good long session of FIFA10 since PES2010’s arrival. I’ve had odd one or two matches here and there, and been very, very impressed with FIFA10, even more so than before PES2010—which makes me even more wary of playing a full session. I’m chest-deep in Master League right now and I don’t want to spoil it. The feeling that once I get a hold of some really good players, the whole thing will be changed in an eye-blink into a much too easy game is already making me uncomfortable. If that does happen I’ve got a back-up plan: Editing, and lots of it. But it shouldn’t have to come to that. It just shouldn’t have to.

    Has anyone got so far in ML yet that they have got a team comparable to a Liverpool/Man Utd, or even just a Bolton/Blackburn? What’s it like? *wrings hands anxiously*

  31. Chris—it’s bloody tough with the Defaults, innit?! I hate the little pause they all do when turning with the ball. I hate the way they’ll pass it anywhere except where you’re pointing, and the way they’ll knock the ball too far ahead, and run it out of play, and then turn into 100-year-old men after 60 minutes… I just hate them right now.

    Re. FIFA10 and Legendary, you must be some kind of FIFA wizard. I’d say you’re one of a very, very few who finds the game to be easy on that level. Probably less than 1% of all FIFA10 players. (Do you play with full assists, or with other settings?) I still hyperventilate at the thought of World Class. One of my odd games on FIFA10 recently was World Class and I got thumped 0-3, without having a single shot on goal.

  32. not-Greg, i have no idea what’s going on with FIFA. I have never beena top class football gamer, although i would consider myself better than average – I guess I’ve played a lot of FIFA and I find the style in this years incarnation to suit the way i play.
    In saying that I had a game just before in Manager Mode and got beat 3-2 so i guess PES playing is going to make me rather rusty… I don’t know what to do now – playing that game in FIFA was like night and day on the pitch. I’m overlooking a heck of a lot of downsides to the core gameplay in PES to play Master League and, after a quick session on FIFA, I’m considering moving back… argh. What to do???

  33. I play with semi assisted passing and shooting with the rest on manual. I have to say, the worst case scenario when I purchased PES last weekend has already happened.
    I’ve gone scuttling back to FIFA and I’m appreciating it a lot more than before my PES expedition.
    Despite all my bravado about the career mode being as important as gameplay, PES is so inferior to me personally on the pitch that I find myself thinking about playing FIFA whilst playing PES which is a pointless exercise in leisure time masochism. Given we have so little time in the modern world to play games I figure I should be playing the games I really want, when I get the chance.
    So back goes PES to be replaced by a pre-order on Assassins Creed II, which has really tickled my fancy.
    I’m sure I’ll pick up a preowned copy again sometime after Christmas, when I’m genuinely bored with FIFA.

  34. Chris—very interesting, and I think I’m on a similar trajectory myself, except I will be sucking all the juice out of Master League in the here and now before going back to play FIFA10. And even then I’ll continue looking for ways to go on playing PES. (Probably using the Edit mode.)

    I’m afraid all the ‘PES is back’ guff of a few weeks ago was slight wishful thinking. It got to me too. I had a few matches on FIFA just now, straight after a long PES2010 session, and the gulf in class was instantly apparent. “No true PES fan would ever say FIFA gameplay was superior,” somebody said on a PES forum a few days ago. That is dead wrong on a number of levels. I still think PES2010 is defensible as a solid PES experience, but times have moved on. I don’t blame you for going back to FIFA10. Come January (December?) I’ll be there too, I think. But I get ahead of myself. This will all be covered on the blog. (And this is why I’m dubious about people taking my enthusiasm of the day (or week) as a signal to spend 40 quid of their own money.)

    The PES2010 gameplay is good for what it is, no question in my mind, it encourages possession and passing play, and the shot mechanic is satisfying. Lingering doubts about the game’s overall difficulty and longevity aside, if this had been PES2008 (I know, that old cliche) few of us would have noticed the jolt from last-gen to this-gen.

  35. It was a 15 minute match. Ended up having a really good session on FIFA 10 – when I first got it I was a little underwhelmed but unfortunately after playing PES2010 it feels really good – scored a few cracking long range goals as well which made a nice change.

    I’m not finished with PES2010 and when I finally start a ML I’m sure I’ll end up playing it more than FIFA, but just at the minute its frustrating me. The highlight in the 7-1 game though was a lovely curling outside of the box shot with Iniesta which went in off the post. Things like that just don’t seem to happen in FIFA.

  36. RickH—I’m relieved it was a 15-minute match. I played a few of them at the start and found the difficulty variable. It’s a big topic on the PES forums.

    Too true about PES’s magic moments, I’ve already had a few that plastered a big grin over my face. To be fair I’ve had them in FIFA10 as well – more so than FIFA09, interestingly. I find FIFA10 a very ‘fun’ next-gen FIFA game, unlike the more severe 08 and 09, and 100% agree that playing it now, after PES2010, makes it feel even better than it did before.

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