PES 17 is this year’s installment of the long running Football/Soccer game franchise. Millions of copies sold worldwide and with many critical acclaims, PES is the biggest FIFA rival in the market.
Each year devs try to innovate and make improvements at the core of PES and this year won’t be an exception.
We recently spoke with Adam Bhatti about PES 17 and asked him to elaborate the improvements we’ll see this year. Moreover, he discussed how PES has been offering story like content across different modes for years but on a much larger scale, compared to FIFA 17.
PES 17 Interview With Adam Bhatti
SegmentNext: With yearly releases of sports titles we mostly hear the developers talking about how they have revamped the gameplay and changed virtually everything in the game, but in reality the difference is not so great. Konami has promised that with PES 17, you guys are REALLY doing that. Can you please elaborate how?
It’s because of a plan that has been in place for several years and is being updated to continually take us forward. On paper, it would be easy to think that changes to any football game are minimal, but this is not the case. After the PS3 editions of PES, we knew we had to create a defined strategy and make key choices. We went after realism, and this is what drives us still.
Each PES does offer more than the last, and it can be seen in the way we evolve things like first touch, the way we are constantly improving the individuality of players and their playing styles, and the way goal keepers are getting progressively better. It is a constant learning experience, but winning two Gamescom Best Sports Game cards in a row indicates we are meeting the needs of the critics and football fans alike.
SegmentNext: With FIFA 17 bringing in new stuff to the table like the Story Mode, a completely new kind of a feature for such a game, is there anything PES 17 has up its sleeves to counter that?
Our focus is on the pitch, to be honest. People buy a football game to play it, so it is of optimum importance that the fundamentals are of the highest quality. That said, we have offered a wealth of modes for years, and all these have been hugely improved in PES 2017.
Fans of Master League will be delighted as more realistic ideas are implemented, with transfers, training and the general nature of how the business side of football is determined are all greatly improved. Similarly, myClub continues to go from strength to strength, so we are making a lot of key changes to this, too. Streamlining agents, adding new options for recruitment and team development and generally keeping it fresh. These modes are hugely popular and cover a great deal of what can be found in a story option, but on a greater scale.
SegmentNext: When the launch of PES 2016 did not go as planned, we heard a number of buyers deciding to skip on the preorder and wait for the release next time around. What are you guys doing to ensure that doesn’t affect the PES 2017 preorders.
We let ourselves down with the rosters issues last year. Basically, we took too long to implement the summer deals and the teams were woefully out of date. There will be away one update to ensure all current signings are implemented. People want the biggest stars at their club to be available, and we will make sure they are – along with all the key stats as to how they are performing. These, too, will be updated on a weekly basis to reflect their infield performances.
SegmentNext: EA has scored the LA Liga deal for their game, which essentially means PES 2017 might not have that for the fans of the league. However, you guys happen to have Atletico de Madrid. Should fans keep hope?
Licensing is a constant battle. We have a couple of aces up our sleeves, though, so, yes, people should keep the faith.
SegmentNext: In the end, for a franchise to grow you need to have a strong install base each year and keep fans interested. How tough it is to entice gamers to buy your game every year? Is Konami happy with PES market performance?
We lost a lot of ground in the PS3 era and the licenses really work in EA’s favor, but PES is growing all the time. Revenue from myClub is growing at a fantastic rate, and more and more people have got into PES via the F2P version we introduced last year. The EURO game also got people into PES, too, with strong sales during the summer. Rome wasn’t built in a day, but we have tremendous faith in PES as a series and Japan is backing us to the hilt.
SegmentNext: Don’t you think it is time that Pro Evolution Soccer opens its doors to female football?
We’d love to, absolutely. However, we need to retain focus on getting everything working first. We will absolutely look to implement the stunning advances of women’s’ football in the future but are not ready to do so at the moment.
SegmentNext: What exactly are you doing to further polish your typical formula for a football game? Can you tell us something we don’t already know?
Control Reality: as simple as that. Give the player total control over what they want to do. No hindering as animation cycles play out. Instant control, offering the moves the player wants to implement. Shooting that totally works according tot he skill of the player, the position of the ball and the pace of the pass. Everything that makes the modern game so exciting, basically.
SegmentNext: Your tagline for the game is “Control Reality” and we have also heard that the game is going to be faster in pace. Do those two things cumulatively mean it will also be harder?
It’s certainly not fast paced. If anything, initial previews indicate a more realistic pace to the action. Yes, certain players can turn on the speed, but the game is predominantly about making passes, finding space, and beating your man.
It is harder to score at times as the Adaptive AI means that players look to counter certain threats and nullify key passes, but that is the mark of a top-level game. Scoring a goal or seeing a well-worked goal is a thing of beauty. And one that makes you feel rewarded. that’s the key to what we are trying to achieve.
SegmentNext: Should we expect any graphical differences between the Xbox One and PS4 version of the game
Not that you’d notice.
SegmentNext: Last but not the least, with Nintendo NX, PS4 Neo and Project Scorpio now on the horizon, can you let us in on your plans regarding the next generation of consoles as far as PES is concerned?
It’s too early to say. We watch all possibilities for introducing PES to new people avidly, though!
PES 17 is releasing for PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC later this year.