The big news this week was the arrival yesterday of the long-awaited patch. Plus some boots and faces and other stuff – which I care about so little, this is the only time I’ll ever mention them.
PES2020 is a still a football game without any fouls in it for me. Now – IF gameplay is fundamental, and a certain feature of football – fouls and free kicks – is fundamental to football, AND a football game singularly lacks that dimension – is gameplay really fundamental? Or is the expectation of a particular slice of the demographic – the online Footballing Fortnite crowd – what’s really fundamental?
It’ll take another week of play to be sure, but so far the October Patch did not bring me any fouls in its sack of goodies. How could it? To give substance to single-players would be to take something away from multiplayers, and such a thing cannot happen.
Another few sessions and I will know for sure about the new patch. It does take time to judge, and I have not so far allowed enough time to be sure. 20 matches or thereabouts is what it usually takes, i.e. approximately 4 separate sessions, which gives session variance a chance to even out too.
I’m watching the PC scene with interest.
Meanwhile, my Master League goes on. I’ve played a few since the last time. My form is more or less the same. Superstar has finally got to me. I relented, midway through my first post-patch session, and went down to Top Player.
The current table:I passed through the January transfer window. I picked up two players.
Dembélé from my Youths was irresistible. I’m always in the market for a top midfielder and this one was too tempting, But suspicious that he had retired so early in order to appear as a Youth Regen… Hmmm.
I also took a random punt on a random player I saw in Free Agents. Bryan Gil (LWF), currently a real-life 18-year-old playing for Sevilla in la Liga, is now a 22-year-old winger playing for my lot in Master League Season 4. 79OVR with impressive winger stats (Speed etc.), he will go one of two ways: either he will be a Master League legend for me, or I will sell him in a few windows’ time almost without ever mentioning him again.
One of the genuine attractions of Master League is seeing which way these sorts of players go. You know from the outset that, eventually, a Robben or an Iniesta or even a John Hartson is going to come good and do whatever you want him to do.
But an unknown quantity like a Bryan Gil? Who the hell knows? This is what Master League is all about!
Bryan’s arrival tempted me into trying this swashbuckling formation, for all of two matches:I noped out of this one pretty fast. I wasn’t getting hammered, and I was creating opportunities with it (as intended), but when I needed bodies in midfield they simply weren’t there. I haven’t got the players needed for this sort of formation right now. Back to a variant of the old faithful 4-2-2-2 I went.
PES2020 is not so far, for me, a PES of great goals. Great goals, for me, means goals like this and this and this and this and this and this and this and this and this and this and this and this. (One from every PES since ’08. Motorola Razr footage to 1080p PS4 footage.)
While hunting down those goals I spotted plenty of grumbling from me about previous years’ PESes not having great goals so far… so we’ll see how PES2020 ultimately shakes down on this front.
My fingerbones-level gaming instinct tells me that the demands of online have fundamentally altered the nature of the genre. Online players in general do not shoot from more than 18 yards. Ever.
I met Arsenal in the FA Cup for the second season running, and for the second season running I beat them – and booked a place in the semi-final for the second season running.
I’ve scored goals that have pleased me on PES2020, no question – here’s the winner in the Arsenal game, scored by that great enigma, Lobato:
By any measure that is a fine goal to score in a computer game. Good incisive build-up and a fine finish. I was cheering and fist-pumping when that one went in, make no mistake. So there are goals of great meaning in PES2020. Context and character goals are still there in abundance. But how many shop-window style goals as seen in the Gallery above will I score on PES2020? I do wonder.