I’m strenuously resisting the urge to go back to PES2013 for a non-developmental Master League experience. I’m against chopping and changing my football game at a whim and don’t want to encourage bad habits in myself.
It’s a tempting call because I really do think that PES2013 is the apotheosis of next-gen PES. Every good idea they’ve had since 2007 was put into the on-field action. What a shame it was so severely let down by the Master League and other modes. (I don’t regard any kind of online football—or ‘squeezeball’ as I call it—as a football game. I’m sure the people who play it like it. They’re welcome to it.)
Only PES2011 is keeping me from PES2013 again. Only PES2011 is stopping me installing the final WENB patch on the PS3 and setting up again in PES2013 with a new team in a non-dev ML.
I’m nearly at the exciting end of my first season on PES2011. The current table:
Too many draws have cost me my top-three spot. With three games to go, I could miss out on promotion (although somehow I think I’ll make it).
The final three opponents are all top teams, with at least one of them also vying for promotion:
So I’ve been playing on with PES2011—only a few games per day, on average, but enough to keep the flame alive.
I’m even enjoying nursing a certain Myth from the depths of youthful mediocrity towards being a respectable striker again. This is him after almost one full season. He plays as a sub most of the time and gets the odd goal.
The 34-year-old Sibon has been hugely disappointing. One goal since he signed mid-season. I marvel at how PES uncannily models the fading performances of a retiring player.
I swear that this game has got the PES ‘X’ factor. I rather misjudged it back in the day. I was too ready to see its gameplay features as insurmountable obstacles rather than as challenges to be dealt with.
I do miss a lot of what came in later PES editions. I sorely miss PES2012/13’s right stick control, especially at corners.
I even miss the ‘send player on run’ feature.
I also miss the L2+directional buttons method of changing the ATT/DEF levels.
On PES2011 you have to awkwardly tilt your controller towards yourself and press SELECT+R1/R2 in order to change the ATT/DEF levels. It’s never a comfortable way of doing it, and I’m not surprised it only lasted one iteration of the series.
Another downside to PES2011 is that I’m playing it on PC. Yes, the novelty has worn off a touch. The PC’s graphics and customisation options are wonderful, but I miss the convenience and routine of the console.
So the arguments to head back to PES2013 are stacking up, but I’m resisting—for now.
I do want to see what happens at the end of this season in PES2011. If I get promoted, I’ll be tempted to play on. But I know that if I play PES2011 into next season and pursue this career, it’ll be a while before I’m ready to look at PES2013 again.
And with so much PES under my belt, would I still want to play PES2013 in a few months’ time?
All things considered, the only window of opportunity to play a non-dev PES2013 ML might be right now… The decision time is coming.