PES is DEAD. Long Live eFootball! (eFootball Trailer Analysis)
Updated: Sep 15, 2021
When will PES 2022 launch?
It won't! Konami will no longer produce any more Pro Evolution Soccer games. Don't be sad, there is something new in store for you: eFootball, which is basically the spiritual successor to PES. This isn’t the first time we’ve seen the series change its name, though: back in the day, Konami called its football franchise Winning Eleven. But this time, the new game will be different in so many ways. Here's how!
eFootball will be FREE and cross-platform
As Konami clearly specifies on their site, in the near future eFootball will become completely cross-platform. Completely cross-platform! This is massive, as for the first time ever, players will be able to play in scenarios that once were unthinkable of: PS5 vs Android, XBOX Series X vs iOS, Android vs iOS, PC vs PS5 and so many more combinations.
This is so unique that is hard to describe in words how cool it will be, if it will work, of course.
The fact the the game will be free of charge raises hopes with regards to the big fan base that it could quickly gather. This was a problem in the past will all Pro Evolution Soccer games: even if the games had an honorable fan base, there were simply not too many players online at any given time, thus matchmaking suffered a lot. This happened because EA simply attracted too many players to their FIFA franchise.
At what cost? eFootball has some downsides
Firstly, we, the players, will be beta testers. The game will launch early this autumn in demo-like shape with only 9 teams and fewer features. Konami released a small roadmap with what they plan to release in fall 2021.
There is one important thing to point out: there will be no Master League. This is sad for many, as the single player mode was quite popular among the PES fans. So, there will be only online matches, and maybe we will be able to train in local matches vs AI.
Why eFootball has a completely different bussines model?
Many PES fans, me included, may ask themselves why Konami opted for this radical change in strategy. While there are very few official posts on this matter, my best guess is that Konami could not compete anymore with their much wealthier opponent Electronic Arts.
EA have monopoly in two key areas of football game development:
Licenses: EA always managed to get their hands on the two most powerful leagues in the world: La Liga and Premier League. Even though EA may have lost some small battles, like losing their license for Juventus (replaced with Piemonte Calcio), they have won the war simply because they are able to spend more money in this area. On the other hand, Konami did their best by acquiring Liga Profesional de Futbol from Argentina, Brasileirão Assai from Brasil and a couple of asian leagues, but, as it turned out, this wasn't enough for the football fans to give up La Liga and Premier League.
Advertising: Simply put, Konami simply doesn't advertise their game enough, while EA is everywhere near launch date. Whatever gaming news platform you are following, they are there, talking of their new features. They also advertise on TV, in stores, on billboards, everywhere. Again, the budget makes the difference.
To be honest, I like the new strategy Konami tries to implement and truly hope they will. Even though they currently dumped Master League, this strategy may benefit Konami and bring them some cash flow, which they can then invest into the game and bring Master League back at some point. If they manage to turn at least 25% of the FIFA players into eFootball players, that would be a huge success.
Final Words on eFootball
It is best to be open-minded when it comes to new takes on existing formulas. Konami tries at the same time to save their football franchise and also innovate in terms of multiplayer. This could be the start of something big. If successful, other developers will follow the cross-platform trend, which will result in an overall less fragmented gaming community.
The fact that they've got Lionel Messi as the cover for eFootball is great news. As they clearly spent a lot of money convincing the argentinian super start to sign, it means that they are really confident in eFootball and that they are dedicated to making the best game of football they can.
Hopefully you found this article useful. Kindly reminder: we are working on our own football game, called Football Club Manager, which will be also launched on the 1st of October on Android and iOS. It would help us a lot if you would subscribe to the newsletter on the bottom of this page so that you will be notified when the game is out.