This latest version of Pro Evolution Soccer feels oddly preordained. Where a match played on its great rival FIFA is at the whim of an object as bouncy and round as, well, a football, a match on PES 2013 feels like you’re performing actions set in the stars by footballing gods.
The word on the touchlines is that PES 2013 marks a return to form after a few years on the bench. Are EA scared? Are they sweating like a striker in the sights of Joey Barton's studs? Apparently not. EA's chief operating officer, Peter Moore, has responded to the positive buzz for Konami's competing football sim by saying: "We always welcome competition from our good friends at Konami," adding that it "keeps us all on our toes".
"Pro Evo has been a favourite game for a number of years but I think people recognise Fifa has been a powerful force and we've raised the quality of what soccer games are in the entertainment business."
PES 2013 has elbowed its way into the September release schedule just four days before Fifa 13 is due to arrive. If you're certain that this year's PES can overtake the on-form opposition, you'll want to take a highlighter pen and attack the September 21 on your calendar. You could even grab a biro and draw a doodle of a man kicking a ball through Fifa's face, if you like. Go nuts. Fifa 13, meanwhile, is out in the US on September 25 and Europe on September 28.
Speaking at Gamescom, Konami have confirmed that Castlevania: Lords Of Shadow 2 will be coming to PC. It's being developed by the same folks building the console game, Mercury Steam.
"This new game tells a much broader tale and one that spans centuries," said producer, David Cox. "It is a game that pushes whatever format it is on to the absolute limit, and we are delighted that Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2's rich blend of first-class fighting, deep exploration and rich storytelling are set to delight and enthrall PC users, too.
A demo for this year's Pro Evo is hurtling our way like a ball kicked really hard by a man. It'll be here next Wednesday, giving us a chance to assume direct control of EU teams like England, Germany, Portugal and Italy, and South American teams from the Copa Libertadores like Santos FC, SC International, Fluminense and Flamengo. Allow stepover artist Ronaldo to deliver the same information through the language of dancing feet in the demo announcement trailer below.
Fifa's main rival has fallen off the pace in recent years, but every annual iteration is a chance for the PES team to launch another co-ordinated attack on EA Sport's solid back four. The trailer above introduces PES 2013 with some shots of Christiano Ronaldo doing his best Terminator T-1000 run. That doesn't tell us much, beyond the fact that Ronaldo is a time travelling robot, which is already a matter of public record.
Fortunately an article has gone up on the PES 2012 site with more solid information. PES FullControl, Player ID, and ProActive AI are the three points of PES 2013's footballing triforce.
It was just a normal day on the internet when suddenly, without warning, an exclamation mark appeared above my head and a loud alert noise played out of nowhere. Resisting a sudden urge to walk very slowly around the room looking for intruders, I headed straight here to post news that a new Metal Gear Solid game is in the works, and it'll be coming to PC.
A Konami GDC job ad, spotted by Joystiq, mentions that Kojima Productions are looking for "project engineers for the latest Metal Gear Solid targeted for high-end consoles and PC." The ad is also looking for engineers capable of developing "network gameplay functionality for online games," which obviously implies a multiplayer component. Beyond that, there are few details, but if it's anything like every other MGS game, it will be quite wonderfully mad.
On the surface it looks like not much has changed in the yearly updated world of Pro Evolution Soccer, but a lack of big new tournaments or flashy features masks the huge work that’s gone into improving the football itself.
After the rigmarole of picking a team (mostly unlicensed, so you get the real Manchester United, but Aston Villa are West Midlands Village) you’re on the pitch, ready to guide your team to victory.
An update is incoming for Pro Evolution Soccer 2012, updating roster lists and player stats to keep them current with the current state of the world's leagues. Expect a sudden boost to Tevez' sulk meter, a severely increased percentage of open goal misses for Fernando Torres and a sudden hike in relative arrests for Wayne Rooney.
29 teams will have their kits tweaked, 13 new styles of boots will be added and a total of 160 clubs will be updated to better reflect their current form. The update will arrive on October 11, and will only affects US players at the moment because PES isn't out in Europe until next Friday. It's going to have to work hard to stand up to Fifa 12's 3.2 million week one sales.
It's the battle of the football demos! EA released the Fifa 12 demo earlier today, now it's Pro Evo's turn to strike back with its second trial. You can download it now from the Konami site.
Spurs, Bayern Munich, Inter Milan, Rangers, Club America and Internacional are all playable in this version of the demo, which features a number of tweaks inspired by feedback from the first PES 2012 demo released several weeks ago. It's now harder to score, keepers have been improved and defenders are smarter, to the extent that defenders can become smart. The full release will put PES head to head with Fifa in North America on September 27, but Europeans will have to wait until October 14 to test those defenders properly.
Konami have released the first of two planned demos for the latest edition of Pro Evo. CVG point towards the download link right here, with word that it contains a few training challenges and lets you play a ten minute game with Manchester United, AC Milan, Porto, Napoli, Santos and C.A. Panarol. This demo is based on preview code, a second demo is planned for release in mid-September ahead of its September 27 launch in the US. It's out on October 14 in Europe.
The trailer above shows off a few new features, like active AI that will make more aggressive runs into open space, and improved off-the-ball control that let you exploit flaws in opponents' formations during set pieces. The AI is so improved that referees will even play advantage. If you're not keen on how this trial plays, it might be worth another shot when the second one is released next month. It's a demo of two halves, after all.