Football, it is here to stay isn’t it? As if one football game wasn’t enough (looking at FIFA) another one has to come along and shout ‘play me! play me! I’ve made improvements since last year!’ Unfortunately for the latest Pro Evo the improvements have not made their presence felt in any meaningful on the actual football pitch.
The trouble with the FIFA/PES rivalry is that fans of both sets of games can at times be so entrenched in their ideas about which title offers the most realistic football experience. I won’t get into that, but it soon becomes clear, having played both games, that Pro Evo is missing that little bit extra something that you find in FIFA.
That extra something? The full 360 degree movement that you get with FIFA, in comparison Pro Evo feels extremely rigid, it is certainly an improvement on last seasons edition but it doesn’t feel a free flowing as you would expect. It comes down to more than just the movement of the players, it is their interaction with the football and other players. It all looks forced and very rigid, you don’t get the feeling of fluidity that you should be from a football game.
At times things do start to feel better, but you will find yourself wondering what is happening when the ball lands in the middle of a hoard of players in the box none of which seem to react to your input fast enough, many a chance has gone begging because a player just would not shoot when the ball was at his feet.
I have scored some beautifully created goals created with some sharp passing and movement only to find myself wondering what the hell the opposition ‘keeper was doing rooted to the spot throughout it all. The difficulty levels also need tweaking, goalies seem pretty dumb all the time while the ‘Regular’ difficulty level seems pathetically easy, in my Master League season I was romping to 5-0 victories constantly at this level, moving to Professional offered a greater challenge which was still undermined by the poor AI.
Master League, and to an extent Become a Legend are what save Pro Evo from being totally outplayed by FIFA, Master League is a great time sink with plenty of squad management features present and the knowledge that you can take your team to the pinnacle of the footballing world by winning the Champions League. While there are plenty of quick matches and other tournament modes in the game, the Master League is where you will spend the majority of your time.
Pro Evo 10 is a solid, if not spectacular football game. The matches may not be as good as what you will find in FIFA 10 but the overall presentation is very slick and smooth. It isn’t a world beater, but not many footy games on the PC are these days. Worth a punt if you need a footballing fix.