2nd Impressions Are Best Impressions

Happy official Release Day to all PES fans past and present. Let’s hope it’s a good one.

I think it will be a good one. It won’t be plain sailing. It’s been a long time since it was plain sailing… But I think it’ll be a good year.

You get a feeling about things and my feeling, after a couple of days, is that PES2020 will be one of the good ones.

For me. We’re all our own separate independent republics when it comes to PES. This blog isn’t a Chronicle of PES, as such. It’s a Chronicle of PES as experienced via the refracting/distorting lens of one individual.

Like most who pre-ordered with online retailers I got hold of PES2020 on Saturday the 7th. I was pleased to have it, but I was not cackling with diabolical glee. I work long, tiring hours at weekends. I found myself trying to play at midnight on Saturday and then on Sunday. Both times propping my eyes open with matchsticks (almost literally).

I enjoyed what I found, for the most part, but there’s nothing like the liberty of a proper session on a proper day off.So I didn’t get to play PES2020 properly until yesterday (Monday).

Much better. I fired up a few Custom Cups – International ones. Back in the ISS days this was the only way I ever played. I used to have great matches with Turkey at that time – so I went with them again. Then I played with Ireland. Then I played with England. I went from Professional to Top Player to Superstar and back again as I pleased.

Some random highlights and goals. The very first clip is included because I enjoyed the way I R2-dummied the ball (just before the thumbnailed moment).

Concerns? Plenty!

Fouls – where did you go to, my lovelies? Oh, they’re still there, but not in any kind of number. Fewer than PES2019, based on my first clutch of matches. And zero-fouls matches are still distressingly common. Why do we still have to put up with this? Why isn’t there a fouls switch or slider in every football game now? Don’t Konami (and EA) know that they would win the football game wars with a single blow?

(EA and Konami surely do know that, but they are not daft. They know that if football games included user-customisable AI fouls for single-player, few single-players would ever be seen online again. The strategy for years has been all about accentuating online play whilst subtly undermining the solidity of offline play. And you’ve got to say, the strategy is working for them.)

Stamina – where are the consequences for sprint-clamping the whole game through? It’s glaringly noticeable that players simply do not get tired – not easily, anyway. ‘eFootball’ showing its butt-ugly face here, no doubt. It’s only from 80+ minutes that a token one or two players seem to be in the red-zone, but by then it really doesn’t matter so much. Visual fatigue was a much-diluted element of PES2019, but at least it was something.

They’re the two biggies, for me, right now. I do have faint worries that the AI might not be as sturdy (and cheaty and unfair, yes) as in recent years, but more matches are needed there, including lots of Master League matches of course.

There is so much in this game that is unquestionably good for me – the passing and shooting on default settings are arguably the best we’ve seen since (patched) PES2014. A major highlight for me. No more predictable shots. Every shot feels different depending on the player and the context. And ‘miss-kicks’ are a definite hit.

I’m going mostly HUDless this year – and at some point, manual passing and possibly manual shooting will have to put in an appearance. Maybe even Advanced Through-ball… I will try not to be all Manual Settings Master Race about it, if/when it happens.

For now, though, I’m still settling in. At the time of writing I’ve decided to wait until Thursday’s roster update before starting a Master League.

Updated: 10th September 2019 — 11:00


  1. Paul – yes please. Only thing missing before ML can begin. Just trying to mess about with some of your kits now.

  2. Raring to go now. Contemplating waiting for klashmans tactics but am just going to go head first tomorrow no matter what I think. It’s going to be Milan or arsenal with the defaults.

    Also , I read just now that Pesuniverse’s file is now free but for the life of me I can’t find it on their site. Seems to be that you have to be a member,no?

  3. NG transfer frequency, negotiation difficulty and oddly starting budget are available in the settings throughout on my ML

  4. #1 – email me

    ML has started!!! very interesting first match vs Leeds, littered with fouls, Vasilj sent off, straight Red, lost 2-0!!

    Loved it!

  5. Started mine with Newcastle on SS with the club team in the prem, lost 3-0 to Bournemouth, 0-0 Villa then 1-0 loss V Wolves…… I am terrible, Hayden and Saint Maximum are the shining lights in a terrible squad. Disabled transfer window but can’t wait for it to open

  6. I’m probably going to annoy a lot of people, but I’m really enjoying the soundtrack this year…

  7. Paul – sounds great! I want to get going now as well. Will send you an email through your website in a sec!

  8. 0-1 loss to Luton and a 1-0 win against stoke. Some of the defaults have enjoyed their summer break too much. Schipper I’m looking at you.

  9. First thing I do on pes is knock off every song.

    First game, lost 1-0 to Derby. Loved the game but one obvious problem, not new, just a consequence of the nu world – I wanted to make a sub on 59 mins, the ball didn’t go out from then till the final whistle. No free kicks, no throw ins, no stoppage at all. That’s when ping pong online-ism makes a mockery of the sport. I could have hacked someone down I guess but why should I.

    Very few transfers to be had for me. Signed two new wingers for my 3-5-2 and that’s it.

  10. Uncle Turf – that continuous play problem from PES2018 was absent in PES2019, thanks to the latter game’s higher % chance of a foul occurring (for either side) at any time. The return of continuous play in PES2020 is a bit sickening really.

    Metz – the in-game text says starting Budget affects mid-season income. It’s great that these options are adjustable. I’ve already switched Fairly Hard Transfers to Hard. I’m interested in the Defaults this year.

    I didn’t spot an option during setup to include or exclude the Classic players. I hope that means they’re in by default, but it probably means they’re not in at all.

    Continuing to admire the game, even if no-fouls means there’s too much game. The AI is very different this year.

    Paul – definitely your playstyle getting all the fouls, UNLESS… you’ve got the golden copy this year! Oi, it’s mine

    Tommy – part of the joy of PES is subtly hearing the faint cheesy pop tunes all year.

  11. nG – They’ve gone! More of a FIFA vibe this year. Another step towards copying “the other game” entirely…

    No option to turn classic players on/off this year. Are we to assume they are in the ML world by default?

  12. None of the kits are showing up on the note match lineup screen. Anyone else got this?

  13. @Paul, would you drop it to me as well mate?

  14. Getting the same issue with kits not showing Paul, amateur hour

  15. No kits either. Maybe show up one in 5 games.
    Some fouls
    Swansea and Ayew destroyed me

  16. I decided to go ahead with my ML on SS. Started with Birmingham away, 2-1 loss. Then 0-0 with someone I’ve forgotten already, 2-0 defeat in the cup against Leeds at Old Trafford (WTF Konami) and then first victory, a 2-0 win against WBA. Enough for today. Defaults are terrible although Vrany & Rice standing out. Signed that decent youth LB because my formation relies on the full backs getting up and down. My 3 goals coming courtesy of Arcas x2 and Hervey. Definitely selling Goios, useless lump.

  17. I have got kits in every pre-match screen so far. It was PES2018 (again!) where that no kits in pre-match screen thing used to happen to me 1 in 4 matches. I used to have to pick the kits based on the little colour thumbnail and hope for the best.

  18. Finally Arcas isn’t Bendtner – Arise Lord Arcas

  19. Prsgame – if you’re playing on PS4 Pro you might want to turn HDR off. I’m planning to give Arcas a chance this time. Arcas hasn’t been a thing for me since PES2016, when he and Castledine were so prolific that they made the title of their own little bromance video:

  20. Can you get sacked this year?

  21. The strangest thing, I’m on PES 2019 (way jealous of how good 2020 looks on PS4) but I get loads of fouls every game. I took note on my last session, and it was 4, 3, 6(!) and then 2. A lot of them come when I pass the ball at the last moment and the AI clatters in.
    Scripting is pretty insane, I wasn’t much of a believer before but on 2019 its so noticeable how the AI steps up the pace, skill and control all of a sudden.

  22. To answer my own question, yes you can.

    I could be in trouble then if I keep up with Top Player. I’m getting battered now. I might start making multiple save files after 5 game intervals and see what happens.

  23. Ack – guess I’m not starting ML yet after all. Followed the guide to the letter (many thanks once more Paul) but it fails on nearly all imported teams. It’ll just say “import failed” and forces me to watch every single team fail (108 of them) > in typical Konami fashion it of course won’t tell me WHY it failed.

  24. #1-whats your ml set up this term, Roosendaal perchance 🙂

    Mammoth editing sesh yesterday, music off but Alan Bennett audio book on, never put the word Splother and Editing together before.

    Homebrew defaults, still deciding on a Dortmund (Golden memories of PES 2008) or VFL Osnabruck, lush strip, Anna Friel pics on the sponsor boards along with a german tv station.

  25. #1 – Shouldn’t fail, all worked perfectly first time for me and others.
    Are you on PC or mac ?

  26. #1 – I’ve been keeping an eye on the PC side this year (no sign of a fouls mod yet, and most curiously, no talk of one) and there’s a PC version of the OF that you have to use instead. The PS4 version won’t work. Something about the Bundesliga, and the PS4 installation workaround doesn’t work on PC.

    Grilled Seabass – it’s not strange at all to get numerous fouls on PES2019! All the no-fouls talk is entirely about PES2020.

    Werd – fellow audiobook-and-PES enthusiast here. I’ve listened to dozens over the last few years. Non-fiction my preference.

  27. NG – Fouls might be your LCS again. I average 2 a game over first 10. About the same as 19. Has to be an element of playstyle in it as well. If I charge blindly down an alley with a striker and am left isolated I usually have to try to beat people and there are fouls called. If I planned the attacks better I’d probably never be in trouble and pass my way out.
    While there are obstructions that are missed, maybe it’s a compliment to get no fouls.

  28. NG – I love AB, his voice is so relaxing and accompanies editing well.

    Homemade kits for me as usual, I have though got stadium photos, Bundesliga badges installed.

    Tommy – I have transferred over all my classics to various clubs (Romario to PSV etc), so they should turn up in my PES world. I’m scared though that sacking is not an option, shades of 2012?

  29. New Post up on PESFX detailing my first ML session.


    WERD – got your email, will do those kits for you as soon as i get chance mate.

  30. Paul – am on PC mate. Will give it another go , perhaps random occurrence as it does “take” on some teams, weirdly. Only 5 or so though.

    Werd – no Roosendaal this time 😉 Arsenal or AC Milan it is!

  31. #1 – and you are installing for PS4?

    Make sure your USB drive is formatted as FAT32 or exFAT32, these are the only types PS4 works with.

    in PES20 **BEFORE INSTALLING OF** go into edit mode then update and apply live update, tick update all club/international teams then let it download and do the update and install it.
    You HAVE to do this before installing the OF.

    Make sure Option file is in a folder called WEPES, Import teams, then select all but any starting with bundesliga_
    DO NOT tick any additional settings under advanced settings, and click import, these should rattle through and work fine.

    then do same process for JUST _bendesliga files but making sure under advanced settings you tick ‘Apply player updates’ and click import.

    If you have already done all this then I really don’t know, maybe try a different USB drive?

  32. Paul – no way to leave a comment on your post – ? I did last week on your previous one, is it disabled, buggy? I tried opening in 3 browsers, same in each.

    The Defaults feel so bad this year, in general! After several days playing with good teams and good players, it’s even more noticeable than usual.

    #1 – the PS4 version of the OF won’t work on PC. You need the specific PC version of the OF from PES Universe (or elsewhere – there’s a couple out, check PES-patch.com). I’m watching and waiting for the PC modder gods to start doing their stuff. Is it normal for there to be still no sign 3 days after release? They get mods for demos out within a few hours.

  33. Paul – thanks again for the help! I think I know what the case is: i am also *playing* on PC so the PS4 file won’t work. Apologies for the confusion there. I’ll have a peek over at PES-patch.com (thanks for the tip NG) and see where that takes me.

    NG – Option files usually take just a little longer (I think it was a week or two last year?) , but once they get going, they get going * good *. keep your eye on the EvoSwitcher mod that has been announced for this year as well – truly amazing.

  34. NG – yes there is a comments section, i can see it and leave a comment, bottom left under the post

  35. #1 – it’s the gameplay mods I’m watching for, specifically fouls. If an effective fouls mod ever shows up, I’m jumping platforms.

  36. NG – those usually doesn’t take very long. you’ll want to keep an eye on this thread then: https://www.evo-web.co.uk/threads/new-gameplay-with-dt18_all-cpk.80757/page-5

  37. Updated the comments section on the blog, hopefully works better

  38. #1 – I spotted a PES gameplay editor app?! With the ‘contact’ values there to be edited… hmmm. Might grab it and experiment myself on PES2019 on the PC.

  39. Paul – Many thanks, I love that kit, simple but with a bit of Sprezzatura!

    Remember everyone you can edit the default ML youth team, if you want Shimizu et al back 🙂

    #1 – moving to the Eredivisie later?

  40. [ML Spoiler alert] I might have dreamed it, but there’s a rumour of someone very special appearing in the Youth Team at some point. Clue: it undermines my theory as to the identity of Castledine…

  41. Werd – yes! I always do after a season or 5 on NuPES. Start in championship, work my way up and then request a transfer when that all feels “done”.

    NG – yes that has been there for a while now. I’d be careful with fiddling with it yourself – could be quite the rabbit hole..

    I am now getting seriously annoyed with the OF situation. Found another one – a French one – and it failed on the final few images / competitions. Think I’m gonna splurge on PES Universe myself – just want it to be hassle free. Wanted to be hip deep in ML now already, dammit…

  42. #1 – just emailed you

  43. Paul – appreciated once again!

  44. #1 – No worries mate, let us know if it works ok.

  45. So my Master League began last night on Top Player with a couple of 2-2 draws after being behind at half time 2-0 in both. The AI scored 3 free kicks and a corner against me – it seems that any foul conceded within 30 yards is straight in the top corner so an upgaded GK is needed ASAP.

    I’m having the same issue as some of you where the kits are not loading at the start screen leading to some unfortuate kit clashes.

    Still struggling to find the optimal Stadium camera set-up too.

    Paul – thanks for the advice on adding sponsors – really brings your kits to life. The only one I can’t get PES to recognise is the Addidas Swoosh kit – any reported issues there?

  46. Hey Lance.
    Seems AI FK’s are deadly accurate, had 2 from 2 scored against me, including one in the 88th min after I fought back from 2-0 down to 2-2, awful way to lose.

    Apparently the kit issue is to do with the PS4 HDD and load times.

    I’ll go check that kit Lance, haven’t used it myself.

    UPDATE: That kit has been downloaded 36 times Lance, no one has reported any issues, but I have rebuilt the PNG and updated the website.

    hers the link to the new version, give that a go


  47. Paul – I’ve conceded maybe 20 free kicks in shooting range to the AI since last Saturday. Number of goals thus conceded: 0. ZERO! How? Tap Circle just before the AI player kicks the ball.

  48. Paul – it does work like a charm mate. I’ve since learned however that Bundesliga is out for now , some issues encountered by the PESUniverse team. Gonna hold out for that, am not a “license purist” by any means but I’d like for at least the top European leagues to be correct. After that, it’s up and away with ML.

  49. Thanks Paul – will have another go when I get home this evening.

    NG – have you tried the new ‘ press triangle’ as the kick is being taken to make the GK make a few steps? If so, did this help?

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