Pro Evolution Soccer have landed the first major blow in their computer game battle with FIFA.
Developer Konami have released the first playable demo on Xbox and PC, with another to follow on PS3 early next week as excitement builds to the start of the season.
Reviews have generally been positive for PES 2013, who have Cristiano Ronaldo as their cover star in another battle with Lionel Messi. The Argentine playmaker is the new face of FIFA, having defected from their bitter rival.
The battle between the two games had threatened to get ugly last month when a member of the Pro Evo team accused FIFA of copying ideas from the former fans’ favourite.
However, members of the FIFA creative team opted not to get involved in a war of words, believing the qualities of Pro Evolution Soccer forced EA Sports to up their game in the development stakes.
“We’re not going to stand here and say anything. We’re very respectful of PES and we understand we have a very strong competitor,” FIFA 13 producer Nick Channon told Eurogamer.
“We know they want to make a better game every year and ultimately that drives us forward.”
The PES demo gives a clear indication that their graphics have been improved, although they still don’t compete with FIFA’s level of depth on the top players at least.
The gameplay is faster, and it still has an arcade-type feel that gamers seem to either love or hate. The new first-touch system is a step forward, but can be unrealistic at times. As a first look, however, it suggests that Pro Evolution Soccer have taken a couple of steps forward.
We expect FIFA’s first playable response in August, and both games will be released in September.
In conjunction with the demo release, Konami also provided a new trailer featuring Ronaldo, Neymar and Ibrahimovic to name a few of the stars. Watch it here…