We hear it every year, but early indications are that PES 2013 is genuinely the return to form that fans of the series have been craving.
“Even if you find learning Cruyff turns a turn-off, in PES 2013 there's one button that it's crucial to get to grips with, and that's R2/RT. This one button unlocks a whole new way of approaching PES, in both attack and defence, and almost singlehandedly makes 2013's offering the best of this console generation,” CVG writes, awarding the game 9.1/10.
“It's fairly simple stuff, although you will need to practice pretty hard to nail it. Either way, it makes the footy you play seem that little bit closer to the game you watch on a Super Sunday.
NowGamer also awarded a 9.1/10, stating: “Ladies and gentlemen, Pro Evolution Soccer is back. After years toiling in the wilderness, riddled with depression and self-doubt, the former king of videogame football has risen triumphantly to top the league right at the back end of this console generation. It’s been a hell of a ride.
“PES 2013 is so good that it’s almost like the other six Xbox 360 efforts didn’t exist, and this is, in fact, the continuation of the near-flawless heritage of PS2 and PSone games that completely shaped the way we play football on our consoles.
“The FIFA vs PES debate will rage, as always, but this year, no matter which one you plump for, you won’t be disappointed. If you’re hungry for the glory, the beauty and the magic of PES, though, you know what to do. It’s so good to have you back.”
OPM scored the game at 8/10, adding: “It’s a relief that a raft of incremental improvements ensure Konami’s 2013 outfit sneaks back into title contention.
“While familiar faults persist, PES 2013 marks the biggest step forward for the series on PS3. FIFA 13’s liquid animations and peerless physics system still give it the trophy-hoisting edge, but now PES’ unique strengths are refined enough to make it a genuinely worthwhile alternative. And hey, if nothing else, it’s probably the only footy game that’ll ever feature Motherwell as a Champions League outfit.”
IGN awarded it 8.5/10, saying: “It’s been a rough few years for Konami’s football franchise, but with PES 2013, it feels like things are back on track. It’s not ground breaking and it’s by no means perfect, but PES 2013 – more than its recent predecessors – feels like a game with a sense of identity and direction.
“Best of all, it offers a unique and challenging take on the beautiful game that’s distinctly different from its competition. After years of heartache for PES fans, it’s great to see Konami’s footy game finally beginning to step out from EA’s gargantuan shadow.”
PES 2013 is released in the UK on September 21st – one week ahead of EA’s FIFA 13.
MCV has been playing the game over the weekend and will offer its own Game of the Day analysis at some stage before release.