Pro Evolution Soccer will take its first steps on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One when PES 2015 releases this fall/winter, Konami has announced today. The latest title in the PES series, which developer Konami is promising will benefit from high quality visuals thanks to its use of the FOX Engine, is also set to release in “additional formats”
Konami is promising a return to the core PES values, including the likes of "total control", "renowned gameplay" and "super responsive controls". What PES 2015 also brings to the series, however, are micro-transactions. Changes to Master League Online means that gamers will now have the somewhat controversial option of buying the players they want through micro-transactions, rather than having to wait to accumulate and spend in-game points. It’s not a move I’m particularly fond of seeing in any game, but as long as the developers don’t force players to go down that path by making it harder to pursue in-game alternatives of gaining the same content then it shouldn’t be that big of a deal. And there is no evidence Konami is doing that here,
PES 2015 will be running on a full version of the Kojima Productions developed FOX Engine, whereas its predecessor PES 2014 ran on an adapted version of the engine. There is a big emphasis here placed on just how good this game will look on next-gen consoles, leaving me to wonder about the performance on the so called “additional formats” as Konami is putting it currently. Lighting would seem to be the major step forward for PES 2015 on the FOX Engine, with the game benefiting from each in-game angle being covered from a single light source. Real-time lighting transitions throughout a match and improved crowd animations, right down to context sensitive crowd animations, means PES 2015 “mirrors the atmosphere of a top-flight match”.
Over a thousand players have been modeled for PES 2015, granting players their own supposed real-life faces and body-types. Using bespoke animations and the PES ID system, players' unique playing styles will be recognizable and they will react as they would in real life matches to goals, fouls and even refereeing decisions. The AI's frame of mind even apparently affects how they play, something that cuts very close to the upcoming FIFA 15 feature of players' emotional intelligence and reactions.
Although PES 2015 brings with it a number of new features and improvements, it is the three biggest that seem to dovetail together the best. A new shooting system allows players far more control and precision over their shots, while that all important final pass has been reworked to provide a wider variety of realistic passes when delivering the final ball. Keepers will also react in a far more intuitive manner to the situations they are facing, so better ball control combined with new dribbling skills such as jinking runs and responsive sprints should make for a great experience during one on one’s, especially up against a Manuel Neuer-esque keeper.
There have also been improvements made to the non-gameplay side of the game. In addition to the aforementioned changes to Master League Online there will also be live updates weekly to adjust team line-ups and player data throughout the season in the English, French, Italian, Spanish and Brazilian leagues.
Konami is promising even more details will be revealed over the coming months, leading up to release. They're teasing such features as weather condition affected ball physics, enhanced edit modes for both stadiums and players, plus new leagues. That's along with many other improvements that will no doubt be keenly awaited by PES fans before the game releases in the fall/winter time.
Pro Evolution Soccer 2015 is currently planned for release on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and other platforms later this year.