PES 2018

Key Features

  • Review Price: £39.99

PES 2018 release date

PES 2018 launches 12 September for PS4, Xbox One, PS3, Xbox 360 and PC

PES 2018 latest news

A playable demo for PES 2018 will be available across all platforms from August 30th. The offline-only demo will provide players with an assortment of teams, stadiums, and modes to experience that will form part of the full release on September 14th.

Pre-order PES 2018 from Amazon UK 

PES 2018 PC requirements – What do I need?

Konami has recently confirmed the minimum and recommended PC specs for PES 2018. Take a look and see if you stack up to enjoy PES on PC:

Minimum system requirements

OS: Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7 SP1 (64bit)
CPU: Intel Core-i5 3450 3.10Ghz/AMD FX 4100 3.60GHz
RAM: 8 GB RAM
VGA: Nvidia GTX 650/AMD Radeon HD 7750
VRAM: 2GB
DirectX: DirectX 11
HDD: 30GB free storage space
Resolution: 1280 x 720
ODD: 4x DVD-ROM Drive

Recommended System Requirements

OS: Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7 SP1 (64bit)
CPU: Intel Core i7-3770 3.40GHz / AMD FX 4170 4.20 GHz
RAM: 8 GB RAM
VGA: Nvidia GTX 660/AMD Radeon HD 7950
VRAM: 2GB
DirectX: DirectX 11
HDD: 30GB free storage space
Resolution: 1980 x 1080
ODD: 8x DVD-ROM Drive

PES 2018 gameplay – Hands-on impressions

Konami is making big promises about PES 2018, and from what I’ve seen playing the latest build at E3 2017, it looks set to deliver on them.

Having finally upgraded from the slightly dusty Fox engine used on PES 2015-2017, the 2018 football sim feels ready for the next generation of 4K consoles.

The upgrade brings with it with it a number of subtle, but important changes to the game’s core mechanics, that even a rookie like me can appreciate.

The most important changes related to the game’s on-the-ball gameplay. The first and most notable of these are improvements to close ball control. This is a big deal, and means you’re able to do more fine movements while in possession of the ball. Of course, you’ve been able to do that in PES for a while, but in 2018 the right analogue stick feels like a more precise tool to use alongside touches of the left stick – though be warned it still doesn’t feel quite as precise as FIFA’s close control.

Related: FIFA 18 preview

PES 2018

This change works in conjunction with improved ball physics and it interacts with the players. The way the ball bounces off players’ bodies and feels much more realistic than it did before, and more predictable as well. When an absolute screamer of a shot deflects off the goalkeeper’s hands, it bounces away for a corner in a way that feels like real life.

The  players who aren’t on the ball and aren’t under your control are also more intelligent. They put themselves in the right place and accurately predict where passes are going to come from while also avoiding opponents effectively. I can’t think more than one move ahead, but I found my optimistic long-range passes completed more often than they did in PES 2017.

Related: FIFA 18 vs PES 2018

And when you’re on the ball, your players will do more to protect themselves from other players heading towards them, making it slightly easier to defend from physically stronger players. This is done, for the most part, automatically, so you can concentrate on the rest of the pitch.
Other minor gameplay changes include a reworked penalty system (that I only tried once so can’t really comment on) and new set pieces. Corners and free kicks offer a lot more freedom for both the attacking and defending sides to set a strategy before a kick is taken.

PES 2018

On-the-ball changes combine with significantly better animations for a much smoother and engrossing replays. The transitions between animations are silky smooth, thanks to better motion capture and a greater number of animations than ever before. The game feels on-point, and the players are starting to feel like they operate in the real world, instead of a clunky video game. PES 2018 has come a long way in this regard.

Compared to FIFA 18, PES 2018 still feels faster-paced, but player-to-player contact still isn’t as smooth and realistic as it is in FIFA 18, and tackles are much more clumsy, which leads to more free kicks and yellow cards in PES, at least in my experience.

Graphically, things have improved as well. Real-world players look more lifelike than they ever have before, with proper facial expressions that accurately portray what’s going on in the game. If they’re bursting through the defence and taking knocks, they look suitably intense. After a goal, the smiles don’t have a feeling of uncanny valley, and the transitions between facial movements look genuinely quite realistic.

Related: Xbox One X vs PS4 Pro
pes 2018

Konami says the PC version has been enhanced, and the developers have worked with Nvidia to use the GPU company’s finest graphical eye-candy. The PC version will undoubtedly be the best-looking way to play the game, which hasn’t always been true.

In terms of multiplayer, random selection matches have returned, and  2v2 and 3v3 co-op has also arrived. And you can play co-op in the MyClub game mode. If you have mates who play PES, the 2018 edition will be a big step up in what you can do together.

Pre-order PES 2018 from Amazon UK

Early impressions

As a football game non-enthusiast, the battle between FIFA and PES has never been on that’s interested me much. Given how different the games feel, it really is going to be down to your own personal taste, as it’s always been. I really like PES 2018, though, and with its raft of under-the-hood improvements and multiplayer additions, fans of the series surely won’t be disappointed.