“A perfectly playable and enjoyable footy game with plenty of options, but it just doesn’t have the style or substance of the much superior FIFA 12.”Free
GraphicsrnrnNot quite the spectacle you get with FIFA 12, but the players and stadiums are impressive enough. Player animations aren’t as subtle and varied as FIFA’s, but there’s plenty to please the eye. In addition, the various menus and stat screens are clearly and logically presented, making PES 2012 the slightly friendlier game of the two for novices. rnrnPlay modesrnrnThis is where PES 2012 scores highly. If you download the free game, you can dive straight into a Quick Match, but pay the in-app purchase price and you’ll be able to have the full experience including Exhibition mode, UEFA tournaments, league cup matches, the Super Challenge (essentially a career mode) and various individual challenges – the Free Kick Challenge being particularly good fun.rnrnControlsrnrnLess sophisticated than FIFA 12, PES 2012 has three control options. You can use the accelerometer if you like, or opt for a single button, multi-touch option, but the two button option is the clear winner, with players using a stick to move and two buttons for passing and shooting. Other moves can be accessed through combinations of presses, holds, button/stick combos and swipes.rnrnMultiplayerrnrnThere’s no proper online play here, but like-minded footy fans can at least use either Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to hook up their handhelds and go head-to-head. You can also persuade friends online to try to beat your achievements in the match challenge leaderboards and Free Kick Challenge.rnrnRealismrnrnAnd so we expose the Achilles’ heel of Pro Evolution Soccer. Konami has done its best to make this an authentic footy experience, and certainly in terms of graphics and gameplay it does a decent job. But the relative scarcity of licensed players and teams, and the presence of outdated strips, dilutes the overall experience.