Sean Clever, GameSpot:
With the FIFA series moving to a new engine, EA’s franchise is in a transitional year. This means PES has the first chance since its PS2 heyday to become the most popular football game. The decision not mess with what works means PES 2017 has a strong foundation, and the new minor adjustments look to be strengthening it. This could be the year.
Maybe, but I doubt it.
I prefer PES to FIFA. I’m not put off by the lack of licenses, kits, and players; I want the best soccer simulator on the market.
I might be in the minority, though. For most fans, gearing up as your favorite player or team is half the fun. If you’ve grown up a Liverpool FC fan, playing as Merseyside Red just feels less exciting. Additionally, FIFA has supplemented their core gameplay with several other game modes, which have amassed huge followings. Yes, FIFA Ultimate Team, I’m looking at you.
All of this to say some things never change. Even if FIFA 2017 takes a nosedive, it’ll still have all the licenses, which is more than enough to sell millions of copies and outsell PES.
Yet, an updated version of our status quo isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Last year’s PES was a great soccer exhibition simulator, and 2017 looks like it’s bringing more of the same.