Yesterday I finally found time to play the PC Demo of PES2019. I played 10-minute matches thanks to the Demo Expander tool, which really could not have been simpler to use. None of that fiddly, annoying ‘drop this file into that folder, then toggle this setting, then run as Administrator‘ stuff. Just run the Expander, and run the game. Sorted.
I only played three 10-minute matches. The option was there to play 15- and 20-minute matches (or even longer, apparently), but I am now and always have been a 10-minute man. Titter.
First I played the Liverpool-Inter fixture that I spent most of my first session playing on the PS4. I thought it would be a useful comparison tool.
Here are the highlights of that match – apologies to those who are triggered by PC gaming in windowed mode.
(Very happy with performance on my late-2017 specced gaming PC. I think playback here defaults to 720p, but 1080p is available.)
That’s a worryingly simple couple of goals from me there. Unkind comparisons could be made between the AI and the Red Sea.
A few fouls on show, which is excellent. One of those free kicks was for offside, but two were for fouls, as seen in the highlights video.
Zero shots from the AI – even if ‘only’ a Professional one – is a worry.
There were plenty more fouls in the two matches that followed. I played as Sao Paolo vs Flamengo, and they were two great matches. I lost the first one 2-3, on Top Player, and won the second 2-1, also Top Player.
PES2019 really shines in the longer match times. Both matches had 3 or 4 AI fouls. Still nothing like PES5-levels, but still exactly what single player PES gamers have needed for the past 4 editions.
The burning question for next week is: will this apparent change of heart by Konami be faithfully replicated in the retail game? And even if it is, will we ever be ‘safe’ from online-crowd-pleasing patches?
Towards the end of my final Sao Paolo match, I was very happy to see the ‘player clutching hamstring’ animation. And was stunned to see this popup message:
Húdson was very worried about his legs.
After this message, I hoped to be taken directly to the squad management screen, but no, the game carried on.
So I paused and went there myself. Húdson in my view should have had a yellow medical graphic beside his name, but there was no indication at all that he was struggling. I subbed him anyway.
This is the most overt evidence of Visual Fatigue that I have yet seen, and just like the fouls thing, it gives me a lot of hope for the full game.
I’ll be back on Friday midday as normal with another brief go-round on the PC demo, which I will be playing again in the next few days.
And then – next week. Release Week. All back to normal.