Konami has announced the 2011 edition of Pro Evolution Soccer. Set for release later this year, the game promises to “reinvigorate the series with the most advanced set of improved gameplay additions, control options and catch up with the evolution of the real-life soccer.” See below for details on all the new features, but the biggest change is the ability to play the Master League online.
- Total Control: The PES Production team has enhanced the 360-degree passing ratio, offering unprecedented levels of control over every pass, shot, headed ball, throw-in and through ball. This allows users to pass the ball into space, and move their play with total freedom. Players must precisely weight their passes and second-guess the runs of their teammates and exploit their movement, while lofted through-balls have an all-new level of accuracy.
- Shot Stamina Gauge: In addition to the generic power gauge, the Shot Stamina meter details the player’s exact level of fitness. Constantly sprinting will affect the player’s movements and will have an adverse affect on his stats, with passes going awry and a loss of pace.
- New Defender AI: Players now also hold their positions naturally, no longer chasing any ball that enters their area; preferring to close down the attacker and force them into a mistake.
- Animation and Player Physics: The PES Production team has totally reworked every element of in-game animation. These additions will become clear before even kick-off, with the players enjoying fluid, natural movements, with more realistic acceleration and inertia than ever before. The physicality between players is also improved, which was a priority requested in PES forums. Jostling and blocking now looks stunning, while there is a larger variety of convincing tackling styles. Ambient animation also adds to the in-game atmosphere, as players adapt their running and movement styles in line with play.
- Speed of Play: The new level of control means that Pro Evolution Soccer 2011 enjoys a more considered pace of play, which varies dependent on situations. The game will burst into life as counter-attacks come into play, but players can dictate the pace via slow build up or exploiting available space to surge forward. It is harder to make long runs from midfield, and successful play will depend on making quick passes to make room.
- Improved Goalkeepers: In keeping with the basis of total freedom of movement, players now have more control over their ‘keeper. This greater control allows for quick roll-outs, instinctive saves, pinpoint accuracy with goal kicks, and precision ball distribution to make quicker breaks or playing down the clock easier.
- Aesthetics: Pro Evolution Soccer 2010 showcased the best likenesses in a soccer game, and Pro Evolution Soccer 2011 ups the ante further. Facial animation has been enhanced, but the key advances are over 1000 all-new animations which have been recreated from the ground up using over 100 hours of motion captured footage. Every aspect of player movement has been reworked, with more organic runs, turns, throw-ins, tackles, and interaction. The way players speed up and slow down is also more natural; while replays display elements of motion blur that bring your saved goals to vivid life.
- Tactics and Strategy: The sheer number of options available in the Pro Evolution Soccer series has established it as a remarkably flexible simulation, allowing players to stamp their playing style on each match. The PES Production team has implemented an all new ‘Drag and Drop’ mechanism that can be used in every aspect of team management, not just substitutions or formation changes. These settings are also animated to promote better understanding of the plays that have been altered.
- Feint Settings: Pro Evolution Soccer has always offered a wide range of subtle skills, feints and turns, but Pro Evolution Soccer 2011 allows users to map key skills to a specific control area, making them available via the second stick or via specific button presses, making them more accessible than ever before.
- Master League Online: Master League will offer an all-new challenge, as users are invited to try their hand against other managers online. Pro Evolution Soccer 2011 will mark the online debut for its much-loved Master League element, with players bidding against each other for the world’s best players, and attempting to build a squad that can compete with the best against online peers all over the globe.