Season 7’s Greetings

And PES2011 is still alive. I’m in season 7 of my Master League career. I’m playing on, and on, and on, despite my serious misgivings about the game.

I have to play a football game. I need an ongoing football game in my life in the same way that I always need to be in the middle of a book, and watching a TV series of some kind. Football games are part of the fabric of my life in exactly the same way.

At the moment, PES2011 doesn’t suck just enough to carry on being that game.

I’m still having some horrific matches that leave me exhausted, frustrated, and wondering what direction PES is heading in. PES2011 has brought a whole new unacceptable level of AI pressure. I don’t like it. It’s not what I value in a football game.

What were they thinking? Somebody at Konami has been playing too much multiplayer. Constant harrying and buffeting and allowing literal split-seconds on the ball are NOT what made PES great. It might be what makes online play so attractive to the 99% of online players who play that way, but it’s not welcome in the single-player game.

But I’ve found myself rather enjoying PES2011 over the past week. I’ve settled into Professional difficulty. I’m laying off the sprint button (always a biggie, that one).

Here’s the current table—I’ve finally got around to re-editing all the team names, but that’s all the re-editing I’ve done:

I’m doing well in the league, a bit too well really. I’m toying with the idea of switching to Top Player at mid-season. I think it’d be a bad move, though, after what happened last time. I’ll say it again: when the AI kicks into superhuman, omni-pressuring overdrive, this is one of the worst PES games ever made. When it’s sane and proper and proportionate, it’s a good PES game, maybe even a very good one.

(I know about the various methods of ‘fixing’ AI pressure by editing individual team settings. I choose not to do such things, which may seem perverse considering all the moaning I do about it. I insist on playing the PES that comes out of the box as much as possible.)

I played one match with the 15-minute setting that a few people have recommended to me. Hmmm. Now this could change things.

It did seem a lot less hectic, a lot less frenetic. But I happened to go into a 3-0 lead early in the second half. Not even PES2011 can take a result like that away from me nowadays, so I found myself playing for a long time through an essentially meaningless match.

I’ll have to play a full session or two with 15-minute matches. I’ll do that over the weekend. Monday’s post should cover it.

Finally today, a video of some recent goals. A common goalscoring pattern can be seen emerging. What I call “Schwarz goals” from 25 yards or so are now well within my grasp. I’ve worked out how to settle myself in space and take the measured shot that PES2011’s fussy shooting mechanic demands.

Link: Season 7's greetings

Goals 2 and 3 are my favourites of the bunch. Goal 2 was one where you can almost hear the net rustle as the placed shot—taken while my player is running away from goal—finds its way to the top corner. Goal 3 was a type of goal that I love to score: a quasi-lob that arcs over the keeper from an acute angle.

There’s also a goal from a ‘worked corner’ (yeah, right), scored with my midfielder, Llama, who can be seen cheekily looking at the replay camera whilst waiting for the corner to be taken—as seen in the picture at the top of this post.


  1. Some nice goals there mate.
    Its funny how things change, since switching to 15 min matches im having my most enjoyable time with PES since its release. Are you going to persevere and play on? if so will you reinstate all your edit data?

    I wouldnt bother changing every teams pressure settings, it makes zero difference, the AI pressure ramp up implemented during the patch seems to over-ride any pressure settings in the game plan.

  2. You have to have a football game in your life.

    I completely understand this, I’ve had to revert to FIFA1O, FIFA11 was just the biggest disapointment of the year for me. I’m would never profess to being a good FIFA player but I just didn’t enjoy playing it at all.

    I thought about PES2011 but given the last few posts on here I think I’m glad I didn’t. So I will stick with FIFA10, I might not have a great deal of time to devote to football games in 2011 what with the wife expecting twins in three weeks time !!!

    Anyway just wanted to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Keep up the good work.



  3. Paul—thanks, and as you can see, I’ve got a good handle on the whole player position/space/power equation re. shooting. I’d go as far as saying that I quite like PES2011’s light shooting now, but I still dislike the light ball and overall light feeling of the game in general. PES2012’s inevitable return to heaviness is going to come as a shock.

    Next week’s posts are going to see some ups and downs I’m afraid. The 15 mins experiment is a qualified up, but I’m sorry to report that I had a terrible session this morning overall. There was one game in particular that I reloaded 4 times (not breaking my usual rule, as the 4th and final game was the same result as the first), just to see if it was the game playing tricks on me, or just my imagination. It was the game playing tricks on me. I’ll tell all on Monday.

  4. Scozza—you’ll have seen me hedging my bets a lot on the quality of PES2011, but right now I’d simply say you’re better off out of it. It is good sometimes—the demo was great, the full game can be great—-but it’s really bad far too often IMO.

    Play whatever football game you love the most. That’s got to be the bottom line when it comes to gaming, with time such a scarce commodity. Sounds like you’ll be particularly pushed for time, but I hear newborns are great excuses to start a gaming session at all hours!

    Happy Christmas and New Year to all. I’ve been saying ‘bah humbug’ occasionally at work over the past few weeks, only to discover today that NONE of the twentysomethings I work with get the reference. Turns out they all just thought I was occasionally saying something weird for no reason.

  5. @Scozza: Congratulations! Do you know the gender(s)? My wife and I are expecting our first (a boy) in about the same time frame.

    Maybe it’s just as well that we don’t have a truly excellent PES or FIFA to be reluctantly drug away from, eh?

    Babies > Video Games anyway. 🙂

    @not-Greg: That’s sad and pathetic. I never thought I’d turn into a grumpy old man (okay, I always knew I would), but what is wrong with the youth of today? Bah, HUMBUG.

    @all: Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  6. Very beautiful goals!!! and great championship!

  7. Paul – It has been my experience that there is a marked difference in AI pressure when you notch the pressing settings down to “Loose” (6 or below). The rub is that you have to make your edits before beginning a ML campaign, or else team styles will remain locked in to the settings present when you first began your ML (just like the team roster, league structure, etc.) I played about a dozen ML games on Top Player with the other teams’ pressing settings set to 4 beforehand and, compared to my newly started ML with the pressing settings reset to their defaults (what can I say, I’m a glutton for punishment), there was on average significantly less frenzied harrying of my ball carrier. I do agree with you that the various forms of AI scripting can render even the most favorable tweaks moot at times.


    Believe it or not, I can live with the pressure (strictly speaking) the AI employs at Top Player. If the AI wants to pull some of it’s defenders out of position and greet me with a little welcoming committee, then fine, they’ll eventually pay dearly for it. What really chaps my hide is that the AI is often able to get way with such tactically stupid maneuvers thanks to the insane aggressiveness of it’s charging defenders. It’s one thing to have a couple players close down my ball carrier and keep him in check; it’s another thing entirely for these maniacs to sprint at stat-defying speeds and literally body check my player right off the ball. The programming team at Konami must have been drunk on sake when they coded the AI’s aggression.

  8. ck—slightly more obscurely than ‘bah humbug’, one of my colleagues at work who deals with IT issues is called Dave, and I’ll often say “what are you doing, Dave?”/”I can’t let you do that, Dave,” in what I think, anyway, is a superb impersonation of HAL from 2001. (Oh, I’m hilarious.) After doing that for about a year and getting what I thought were appreciative smiles from Dave and all in range, it turned out, yes, that NO ONE KNEW WHAT I WAS ON ABOUT. They just thought I was saying odd sentences in a gentle American accent for no reason at all.

  9. El-ahrairah—I’m convinced they modelled PES2011 on the usual kind of online football experience. They looked at EA’s phenomenal success with FIFA online, thought “let’s have a piece of that”, and implemented what they thought was a winning formula. Slowly and surely, us single-players from the classic era of football gaming are being edged out. It’s bad enough that there even was a golden era of football gaming. It should be now 🙁

  10. I need help ….in deciding which console to pick up as a new year present for myself…ps3 or xbox……i only play footie games may be very rarely motarsports….but 90% pes….wt shld i pick ….i am damm confused

  11. Jamiey—a tough question there. I prefer the PlayStation brand and I think the hardware is still—just—more reliable than the 360. But the 360 is the PS2 of the generation, so for that reason—and you can get so much on XBLA, and also such a huge and growing catalogue of games—go for the 360!

  12. @not-Greg: Hahahahahahah, I would have thought it was HILARIOUS.

    “I can’t let you do that, Dave.” I’m tempted to name my son Dave just to be able to tell him that all the time.

    I used to work at a restaurant in Beverly Hills (Los Angeles). My job was to watch the whole room and tell the kitchen when to start making which part of each table’s order, so that they would get their courses on time. If it were time for entrees on table #5, I would tell the kitchen, “fire entrees for table five,” that sort of thing.

    Being LA, we would get our share of celebrities and one time we got the guy who played the serial killer from Silence of the Lambs. Nice guy, actually. I’d been pretty blase about most of the actors we’d see, but I’m pretty geeked once I figured out who this guy was, as I loved that movie. So I tell my kitchen (in my best ‘puts the lotion on its skin’ voice) “it fires the entrees for table five . . . ITFIRESTHEFUCKINGENTREESFORTABLEFIVE!”

    Nobody got the joke.

  13. Thanks for the reply…i need to know if there is any difference in graphics for pes on xbox or ps3….also is there a problem in importing pngs on xbox…..i am really in to editing ….its just tht on occations i have to go to my inlaws and i cant carry my huge gaming pc …i can always carry console though ….tht is the reason i need the console…

  14. ck—I think not recognising an in-narrative reference from a movie is slightly more understandable than the headline blanknesses I keep encountering in everyday conversation. There’s a whole slew of references that were commonplace for those in their 30s and 40s, but are ‘last-gen’ for those a decade or two younger. Over the past few days I was talking about the iPhone with a colleague, a computer science graduate with a fearsome cleverness about him, but he’s a product of his times. “Of course,” I said, “the iPhone’s battery is its Achilles’ heel.” I got a very familiar blank look.

  15. jamiey—if it’s Editing for PES you’re into, then you need the PS3. As far as I know there’s simply no comparison with the 360, which is significantly locked down re. Editing.

  16. I want to get the right kits for the PS3 version of PES 2011 but I haven’t managed to find out how to change all the data properly yet. On the PS2 it was easy, you just had to change the option file and save using the memory card, but from what I can see, you have to copy and save each individual piece of kit and logo etc then save to get iyt all to be correct. I am after the right kits and logo’s, as well as teams for the Championship to stick into division 2 so it is more like the english game. I get fed up with the made up teams and a few foriegn teams plaing in the premiership. Can anyone help me at all?
    Many thanks.

  17. The Dribbler—it’s a lot simpler than you might think. The main drawback is how time-consuming and fiddly it is.

    Get the OF you fancy (WENB’s is a good one).
    Transfer it all to a USB stick.
    Plug it into the PS3, and then…
    (the fiddly part) you have to transfer every item of data, one after the other, from the USB stick to PES2011’s Game Data folder on the PS3. It can take up to 20 minutes depending on the size of the OF.

    Once you’ve finished, that’s it. PES2011 will recognise and load the OF next time you start it up.

    It would all be so much simpler if the PS3 allowed a ‘select all/copy all’ option, as it does in video and music folders for example, but it doesn’t. So it has to be done the long way around, unfortunately.

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