FIFA And Pro Evolution Soccer Are Head To Head, Here’s Which One You Should Buy
There are two new soccer video games available on the market by Electronic Arts (EA) and Konami, which have caused a stir for the soccer gaming world. In case you’re one of the people who are torn between which one to buy, rest assured because after this article you’ll definitely know which one to buy.
Konami beat Electronic Arts to the punch this year when it unveiled Pro Evolution Soccer 2018 on September 12th. Meanwhile, EA released the latest title in its franchise, FIFA 18, on September 29th but obsessed gamers planned ahead and received the game a week early thanks to a limited pre-order campaign.
What they have in common, unfortunately, is that they both come with a hefty price tag.
So if you could only choose one, which one of these titles should you invest your hard-earned monies towards? Let’s find out with a few head-to-head comparisons!
Which title looks the sleekest?
EA and Konami have done great work to give their respective titles a unique look that is instantly recognizable to the eye.
For example, EA’s FIFA has aimed at a hyper-realistic look in recent years that can fool a casual passerby into thinking its the real thing. Check out the shot below of Antoine Griezmann popping one into the net.
Meanwhile, Konami’s style is nothing to scoff at.
The differences aren’t too noticeable but there are details can be overlooked by the untrained eye. Check the level of detail in Suarez’ knees in the bottom photo vs. Griezmann’s knee in the above photo. Griezmann’s uniform also seems to pop in an almost 3D effect by comparison to Suarez’ Catalan colors. PES in action also has a layer of shine and gloss to it as if covered with a thin layer of Saran wrap.
EA also has a bad habit of releasing FIFA titles with some incredibly funky glitches that are eventually patched while Konami continues to be more careful in that regard. I’ve yet to see someone’s foot spin like a helicopter rotor in PES. Eventually, it comes down to a matter of personal taste.
Who has the best game modes?
There are many ways to play the beautiful game and both titles are near equal in this department of various departments. Both titles include solo and multiplayer variations of online play. Both also include tournament modes and career modes such as Konami’s Master League mode pictured above. Both also include a collectible card game-style mode where gamers build unique clubs using players they acquire with in-game currency, prizes, trading, etc.
Each company has tried to one-up the other this year in a few ways. Both companies put more effort into fleshing out their respective career modes, for example. PES’ Master League now includes pre-season tournaments and even more decision-making for the gamer-coaches. Meanwhile, FIFA’s Career Mode now includes the option of dealing with signing players in real time with interactive cut scenes.
Konami also recently announced that its official eSports competition mode, the PES League World Tour 2018, will also host the official UEFA Champions League eSports competition. Meanwhile, EA will include the Champions Channel, which will allow FIFA players to watch the best eSports competitors compete on FIFA as well as via Twitch.
EA has a killer app in its newest mode, “The Journey.” The company created the new mode in last year’s title that plays out as a story mode that incorporates the action on the field with action behind the scenes. Players control young English footballing prodigy Alex Hunter in “The Journey: Hunter Returns” as he makes his way through European and American football. There’s plenty of drama and guest appearances by real-life stars, such as Thierry Henry pictured below, along the way.
Decision: FIFA 18
Which game is best on the sticks?
Gameplay has almost always been on the side of Konami and this year is no different although the difference is razor-thin. Both companies have gone to great lengths to provide fun and intelligent gaming on the screen with controls that are simple enough to learn and difficult to master. Both titles succeed in that mission especially when it comes to playing with well-known teams according to their playing styles.
What’s different for FIFA this year is the inclusion of quick substitutions. Players can preset three subs before the game begins to make with the press of the right-back shoulder button thereby eliminating the need to jump to the pause menu. It’s quick, it’s efficient, and a time saving option that keeps the flow of the game moving.
However, PES still holds the advantage thanks to two key differences. The first is a game option introduced last year that adds to the in-game strategy on the pitch. Players can use Advanced Options to add two additional offensive and defensive options that players can activate and deactivate with the press of a shoulder button + a d-pad button.
For the purists, PES has also for a long time included advanced options for fluid shifts in formations when in possession and when out of possession. FIFA offers some customization but nothing at PES’ level and what it does offer needs to be done through the game’s start/pause menu thereby killing the flow of the game at times.
Decision: PES 18
But which title really makes you feel like you’re in the thick of it?
Unfortunately, what hurts Konami and PES overall is the game’s lack of licensing. EA has repeatedly included tons of officially licensed teams, leagues, and stadiums including the top four English divisions and the top two divisions in various countries such as Spain and France. This year, FIFA 18 also includes the Icelandic national team, Germany’s top three divisions, and Saudi Arabia’s national team.
It even has Atletico De Madrid’s new stadium, the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano.
PES, on the other hand, has actually lost a number of licenses. While it still holds the rights to the UEFA Champions League and Europa League tournaments, it hasn’t included either the CONMEBOL Libertadores nor the CONMEBOL Sudamericana tournaments in some time. Worse, it pales in comparison to FIFA with less than a third, maybe a quarter of licenses. As a fan of Marseille, I’ve played UCL games versus Manchester Red and London Blue or whatever who serve as stand-ins for real-life teams. This also means that Barcelona fans have to play superclasicos versus Madrid White and Cristiano Fauxnaldo.
Finally, both companies put tons of work into making the crowds and stadiums more dynamic and FIFA edges out PES by just enough in that department as well.
Note the difference between FIFA’s Bombonera stadium below:
With PES’ Bombonera:
Decision: FIFA 18
Konami and Electronic Arts both offer solid soccer titles but it’s the latter that provides the better overall experience on the digital pitch.