Konami must have been disgusted to see Neymar leave Barcelona for PSG, because much of their branding relied on the core group of Barca superstars. PES 2018 is even branded as the ultimate Barcelona experience (there's a special edition dedicated to the Catalan giants), and we all know the general lack of licensing available to Konami means they like to tout the ones they do have.
Trying to get a jump start on FIFA has become a Konami trademark in recent years. Ever since EA's footballing monster began trouncing PES annually, the Japanese developer's game plan has been one of shooting first. That's why the demo for PES 2018 has landed a full fortnight before FIFA 18's taster is expected, and that's why the full game will see release over 2 weeks before EA's product.
The question is: does PES 2018's demo do enough to convince those footy fans eagerly anticipating FIFA's release to take an early punt on PES instead? That's clearly what Konami are going for, and there's a lot to be learned from the experiment. Does PES have the quality to be a FIFA-beater this year, or is it simply more of the same?