Monday, December 31, 2007

Pro Evolution Soccer 2008

PES series from Konami has been my favourite football game for years. What can I say about PES 2008? It is a big revamp of this series, added with new features but also missed some of the all-time features.
What I experienced in PES 2008:

- Total changed of menu interface, besides it shows the title and genre of songs that playing in background(which is similar to FIFA style...)
- Faster gameplay(passing/shooting)
- Improved facial animation of players, many of the faces are using new models(some of them not so "real" if compare to past series)
- Can see the fans in full 3D
- Can see the bench with substitutes and manager(a small box view of it when game is paused)
- Different angle of view for penalty shoot when playing as goalkeeper(Camera is behind goal where you can see the penalty taker)
- Better and longer replay (with zoom camera and motion camera, I still prefer motion view when turning the view around)
- The ball sounds too heavy
- New commentators, Jon Champion and Mark Lawrenson replaced Trevor Brooking and Peter Brackley - Improvement?
- Still very lack of licensed teams, e.g. Newcastle and Tottenham are the only licensed teams for Premier League

PES 2008 main menu

- Master League is added with headline's scenes(snapshots of match, fans, press conference...), popularity for clubs and players

Master League's Interface
Interface changed when club's popularity improved to B

- Improved ball deflection and ball rebounds more realistic like real football!
- Smarter goalkeeper (and more likely to come out from the box and play with the ball)
- Improved quick free-kick with no screen transition, fast free-kick can be taken when there is player around the ball after a foul
- The referee has real physique body, cannot penetrates through referee's body anymore
- New moves(Flip Flap, Sideways, Matthews Feint, ...)
- Shirt pulling sometimes can be seen when pressure on player(E/R1 + S/X)
- Able to set which players to go up(Max. 3), defenders/goalkeeper can be set to go up for attack when corner kick. Set the players under Setplay Settings
- Able to adjust the no. of player for wall build-up, by pressing Z/L2 + up or down button to increase or decrease the wall's player, now the wall can be built with max 10 players!

Compilation of headlines - The third one is funny...

- Facial import! Edit players' face by using picture/photo of your like! Import your own picture and become a top scorer. Picture also can be imported for jersey's chest logo, and I noticed the fans' jerseys will also change to the edited one

Strip is added with imported logo

- Diving!
Now your players can dive! While sprinting(E/R1), press Q/L1 + Z/L2 (or just press Q/L1 + Z/L2 + E/R1 together), and the player will fall on the ground immediately. I have tried to dive in penalty box for many times but most of the time got card shown because of diving, only 2 times were succeed to earn a penalty. Diving outside the penalty box also useful, a player was sent off because of 2 yellow cards, where both of the cards were resulted from my diving... Just make sure you dive in the right time and place(Just like real football) or else you get card from the referee. If you simply fall down on the pitch, the referee will show you yellow card without hesitation and award free kick to the opposition. However, there is one place you can dive as many times as you want- Your own penalty box. Referee wouldn't bother you because it's non-sense to award opposition a penalty if you dive in your own box. If you dive when shirt pulling happens(while attacking), most of the time you will win the dive. It is fun to dive, to fool the referee or make some funny act with your players!

It's not a cheat, it's one of the gameplay features

Shirt Pulling

According to Konami, there is a new AI system called Team Vision but I couldn't feel the real difference of it.

So what are missed:
- No more PES shop, that mean unlockable features inside it also lost together.
e.g. No more beautiful ball-effect, no more ride on ostrich or dinosaur as well as wear in penguin suit(PES shop is a real miss!)

Miss the war between dinosaurs and penguins

- No more referee option in exhibition mode
- No more penalty shoot-out match mode
- No more snow option in weather selection in exhibition mode, so far haven't see any match on snowy day
- Limited edit options if compare to past series, no more boot edit, no more drawing of logo, no more dog heads...
- Training mode not as complete as past series (where you can train almost every single move)
- No more match type option(Golden goal/Silver goal)
- No auto load of option file, need to load game settings in system setting
- No more random selection match

I was told that PES 2008 for PS3 and PS2 is different, looks like PS2 version is not included with all the new features and I heard that PS2 version got PES shop? PC has the same version with PS3 and X-Box.
PES has great gameplay and graphic but lack of licensed teams, I hope Konami will bring back the missed features and add more licensed teams in the next release.
So how is your experience with PES 2008?

This is my last post for year 2007, enjoy and welcome 2008...
Happy New Year!