When Konami announced their decision to release eFootball PES 2021 as a ‘season update’ rather than a new instalment of the PES franchise, many people probably looked at this and thought it was - for want of a better phrase - a massive cop out. However, in a gaming landscape that has been hit hard by the global pandemic, with many games being delayed indefinitely, there’s a much stronger case to be made that this was Konami doing what they do best: adapt and evolve.
A football franchise that has been hit time and time again with restrictions, limitations and setbacks, Pro Evolution Soccer has always found a way to make the best of what it has at its disposal over the last 25 years, rather than lament what could have been. Through their unyielding adaptability and constant evolution, Konami have developed a franchise that was, in fact, so good last year - winning E3 2019’s ‘Best Sports Game’ - that they’ve decided to double down on it this year.
As a result of the imminent arrival of the PlayStation 5, Konami want to give their team as much time as possible to work on mastering PES 2022 for the next-gen console. Couple that with the difficulties surrounding the current global climate and eFootball PES 2021 offers fans an identical experience in terms of gameplay, but at a massively reduced price point (more on that shortly) with the main focus being updated kits, player faces/stats, teams rosters and competitions.
That said, it’s definitely a gamble on Konami’s part, but at a time when uncertainty is rife, the one thing you can rely on is that Pro Evolution Soccer knows how to deliver the best experience for its loyal fans…