Pro Evolution Soccer 2017 (Xbox One) Review

By Sandy Kirchner-Wilson 09.10.2016

Review for Pro Evolution Soccer 2017 on Xbox One

PES, or Pro Evolution Soccer, is a Konami football franchise that aims to be FIFA's more technical competitor, although it often gets harsh comments due to not using licensed teams or realistic players. Building upon its predecessor in almost every way, can it push off its old persona and stand up to the popularity of the new FIFA 17?

Right off the bat, the strength of this title is the depth and technicality of the options available. From creating a club and managing it, to just starting a simple exhibition match. One big thing of note, non-football fans will realise that this game, while it has pretty informative tutorials, also has a lot of in-depth football manager things going on, and without at least some knowledge of the sport, it could act as an instant barrier to newcomers. The menu system is also a little messy, but gradually it will make more sense. Right, that's the warning out the way - so how does the gameplay feel? Well, it's great, actually!

The players control fluidly, and there are lots of little details that amount to a much more satisfying feeling than its predecessor. The ball appears to have a realistic weight, and players bounce off each other fairly convincingly, except maybe during slow-mo replays where the contact bugs can be seen. The subtle angles and power options, alongside the crowd reactions, creates an immersive and genuine pitch feel. The AI programming is exceptional in this rendition. Teams rarely leave themselves open and player interaction feels almost as though you're playing with a human opponent, from subtle things like avoiding tackles to the goalkeepers catching everything that should be caught and having realistic slip-ups.

The soundtrack, however, is a little limited. It features a reasonable selection of popular music, with a small supplement of original tunes. It's not bad as the matches play out without those, but it can be a bit repetitive when spending time in the menus. The match sound design is also great, with the crowd reacting to everything in real-time, with cheers, boos, and silence, depending on the situation, really upping the match vibe. The commentators do an okay job, too, but their dialogue is limited, therefore, it repeats quite often after a couple of hours playing. Sounds produced by giving the ball a good punt, however, are as satisfying as ever.

Screenshot for Pro Evolution Soccer 2017 on Xbox One

The modes on offer provide plenty of variety, but a few require being online, something that would have been better left under its own menu category to avoid confusion. When playing online, the matches are, for the most part, okay, although there can be varying amounts of lag. These inconsistencies make the online part feel a little unrefined, but when it works well, it's some of the best fun in the game. This is quite easily circumvented due to being able to search by connection quality. Of course, there is offline co-operative play, too, which works great.

The depth of the myClub mode is also impressive. Signing people on is easy to do and is well signposted within myClub's specific menus. It's during this that many of the little flaws pop-up, like little AI bugs to do with the players' in-game stats. This is due to a slight rubber banding system to level the teams to each other for closer matches - it's barely noticeable, yet obviously there.

Additionally, the presentation is better than expected. The players have the occasional odd animation, but, for the most part, their movement is believable. The reactions to getting booked are funny, and the tackles have reasonable weighty falls attached to them. The pitches and stadia are detailed, and the lighting effects are very good. As for the menus, they are passable, but the boxy nature of it can become tedious during a long play session where it's necessary to drill down a few levels multiple times. While the UI, then, isn't that pretty, the general aesthetics are indeed very polished.

Screenshot for Pro Evolution Soccer 2017 on Xbox One

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10

Pro Evolution Soccer 2017 is a great footballing effort and it deserves to get as much time in the spotlight as the new FIFA. The unlicensed teams are hilariously close to puns, the customisation of players and the team management aspects are fantastic (if a little complex), and the pitch play is amazingly enjoyable. With the multitude of modes and options available, Pro Evolution Soccer 2017 is worthy of this year's football game crown, and it's a must-have for those who like a bit of realism and meat to their sports games.









C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   


Comments are currently disabled

Subscribe to this topic Subscribe to this topic

If you are a registered member and logged in, you can also subscribe to topics by email.
Sign up today for blogs, games collections, reader reviews and much more
Site Feed
Who's Online?

There are 1 members online at the moment.