There is no denying that Pro Evolution Soccer plays a fantastic game of football/soccer. However, game modes are just as important as gameplay in a sports game. PES’ career mode known as Master League is where most people will rack up hours of game time. Unfortunately, Master League falls short from being a truly authentic and deep career mode.
I really hope that Konami focuses on massively improving Master League for PES 2018. Here is a list of the top 10 things that I really want to see on Master League in PES 2018.
10. Match Day Improvements – Little presentation touches go a long way in adding charm and authenticity to a career mode. Firstly I would like to see a display of what day it is. Currently it only shows what the date is, so I have no idea of knowing whether it’s a Saturday kick off, or a midweek Wednesday kick off.
I would also like to see a display of the kick off times.
One simple thing I would like Konami to allow us to customise is the time of day and weather before a match in Master League. It allows you to do that in other modes, but not in Master League. It would be a nice little touch in my opinion.
9. Correct league table structure – One thing that I really can’t understand is, in the years and years of releases of PES, not one of them has ever had a correct league table structure. It’s always had that infamous structure. No display of played games, and the points are on the left. Please just put a played games column on the left, and the points on the far right… please?
8. Ability to See Who Scored After Skipping Match – Sometimes you might not fancy playing that match and will skip the match if you’re confident your team can win without you. What I don’t like is how there is no way of seeing who scored. It gives poor indication on who I should pick in future if I do choose to skip, and stats is something that is vital to any career mode on a sports game.
7. Youth Team Customisation – As it stands right now, the youth team feature might as well not exist in Master League. It is incredibly lazy. It’s just a random list of generic players that don’t look like a 16 year old and look more like 40 and they are all from different countries. There is no way to recruit only English players, or certain specific types of players. For example there is no way of me looking for fast pacey strikers. My youth team didn’t have a single English player, when I am managing Tottenham in the English Premier League. There needs to be customisation. I personally want a team full of English players. I want to be able to filter that in my Youth Recruitment.
6. Ability to Turn Off the First Transfer Window – Just like in FIFA’s Career Mode, I wish you could disable the first transfer window in July & August. I personally find it more realistic and enjoyable having to stick with the squad you have until January. It makes no sense to start a new career with all the new summer signings of real life, only to find that the teams around you have a completely different team, even though in real life they already went out and spent tons of money brining in new faces. Having the first transfer window off massively improves the challenge and authenticity of a manger mode in my opinion.
5. Ability to See Weekly Wages – Another odd thing in Master League is the fact that the player wages are displayed on how much a player is paid per year. In the real game and in almost every other football/soccer game out there, player wages are viewed as per week. I understand that the wages on PES are paid yearly, but it would be nice to have an option to see how much they earn a week so that I can actually judge if I am paying too much for a player’s contract.
4. More Realistic Transfers – This is pretty self-explanatory really, some of the transfers are incredibly unrealistic on PES. The offers received for my players almost feels random. Several lower level Spanish clubs and French clubs offering for either an English fringe player or sometimes some of my best players just don’t seem realistic. The worst one is when teams like West Brom offer £25M for Harry Kane. The sum is pathetic but it’s also unrealistic for a team like West Brom to even try it.
3. Job Security – As far as I know, there is no way to check if your job is safe or not. In a world full of managers getting sacked every month, you’d think your job would become under pressure after a few bad runs. I haven’t done terrible enough to really test to see if you can even be sacked, however it would be nice if there was a bar showing how safe I am in my job as the manager.
2. Player Injuries – Player injuries are almost non-existent in Master League. I receive on average two injuries a season. I love how aggressive the AI can be at times, and sometimes the tackles they make are disgusting, I love it. However, very rarely will my player be injured from them.
Sometimes my player will roll around on the floor after a tackle and will require treatment, but not very often. Most of the time, he will return to the pitch and will not be injured. This needs to be changed.
On top of that, I have never seen a training injury. I think it would be challenging if we received reports back that a player has been injured in training, like in the Football Manager games.
Preferably it would be awesome if we could have an injury frequency/difficulty setting for both in match and from training. This way if you do not wish to have the real life struggle of injuries in your Master League, you do not have to. If you’re someone like me who wants his Master League spiced up with the challenge of injuries, you can by turning the injury difficulty up.
As of now, the lack of injuries makes the mode quite stale in my opinion, and I would much rather see less emphasis on player fatigue and more on injuries. With the lack of player stories and injuries, the game gives you no reason to rotate your squad around other than the fatigue and condition of the player, which is unrealistic to me.
1. Player Stories, Personalities and Morale – It is clear that Konami must have plans to have something like this one day. Several times there will be generic transfer rumour stories on the home page of Master League. The problem is that it doesn’t actually affect anything and it merely acts as a presentation aesthetic for the mode. If there is a rumour that one of your players is leaving, that should develop further, your player should approach you and tell you if it’s true or not.
If it is true, he should be placed on the transfer list and be sold before it jeopardises the team spirit. With the very well done team spirit system that currently exists within Master League, it would be a great opportunity to have factors that can negatively or positively affect the team spirit.
One of the major things currently in Master League that makes it so stale is the fact that players do not care if you don’t play them. Another key part of managing in the game of football/soccer is keeping a whole squad of players happy. It would be awesome if different players had different personalities. So for example, some players will demand maximum game time, others could be loyal meaning that no transfer rumour will affect them. Others could be all about the money and could leave if they are not paid enough. Others could be very prestigious and will leave if a team like Real Madrid come knocking.
Keeping fringe players happy can sometimes be tough if you’re playing well and have an injury free squad. Player morale would be a great addition. Giving players enough game time to keep them happy or winning enough games to keep the big stars happy could be a tough challenge.
Currently, with player stories and personalities not being a part of Master League and with a lack of injuries, it doesn’t give you much reason at all to have squad depth and it makes the whole team selection process rather stale. Ultimately the whole mode suffers from not having number 2 and 1 in there.
So those are my top 10 most wanted things to be added to Master League to make it a much better experience. Hopefully Konami can take feedback and really work on the modes this year for PES. They have absolutely nailed the gameplay, but sadly the modes don’t offer enough to keep you coming back in the long run.
For me Master League is the real heart of the game, and it needs improvements to be a real top sports game.