PES 2017 Second Build Gameplay Review

PES 2017 Gameplay

Second Build

The PES 2017 second build is the second version of PES 2017 that people external to Konami have been able to play. The game can still be tweaked, and even changed, but being less than two months before release it appears unlikely. Konami actually stated it was likely that the gameplay is locked in at this stage. Last time the PES community were afforded an entire day to play the game whereas this time we had a three hour window. The teams we had available to play with and that are allowed to be discussed were Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, France and Germany. Similar to last time we were able to edit the advanced tactics and the match settings, unfortunately the formations were locked in.

Comparisons to PES 2016

After not playing PES 2017 for a couple of months it is difficult to pinpoint the changes between the two builds. As such, rather than attempting to do so on a detailed level we will discuss the game as it’s own entity making reference to the first build where possible. The PES 2017 second build still feels like a refined version of PES 2016, maybe even more so now. The biggest similarities come in the shooting, passing and dribbling. Well that’s the main bulk of the gameplay I hear you say? Correct. It isn’t that there the same but that you can tell PES 2016 was PES 2017’s predecessor. These elements at a high level are all now more varied but do have a similar feel whereby the same tricks that make you good at these elements in PES 2016 appear to work in PES 2017.

PES 2017 More Rewarding

One element that has definitely remained the same is the ease in which opposing players can intercept you. This is a good thing as tiki taka football is still rewarded, and satisfying, but you can no longer blindly click A to keep the ball. If you’re lazy with a pass or simply play the wrong ball you will get punished. Goalkeepers are also still excellent. The variety of saves are still there and it is harder to predict when a goal is going to be scored before it leaves your foot (at least it was on top player). These factors create exciting triple save moments where even if you don’t score you still feel as much enjoyment as you would out of a goal just because of the excitement and realism surrounding it. Here is an example of one in a game we played against Only Pro Evolutions:

The other constant between the two builds is the physicality of players. Players in close proximity and whoever’s body is in front of the ball, along with strength attributes, still have a greater emphasis on the end result of that dual. Attributes in general are now of greater significance; a player’s attributes has a more realistic reflection of what they’re capable of on the pitch. Previously it felt that you could get away with poorly rated players in certain situations and against a lesser quality of opponent; this is no longer the case as if a player is faster, stronger and better at passing it will be apparent in the game. This creates a more realistic match where it feels as if you are no longer playing a simulation but getting closer to being in an actual football match. Naturally as fans of football video games this is exactly what we’re looking for – a realistic representation of the players we love but in an environment we’re able to implement our own style of football and skills. PES 2017 does an excellent job of this.

Removing the Flaws of PES 2016

The fundamental flaws of PES 2016 have also been eradicated. An effective strategy on PES 2016 was to excessively slide because it was overly effective and in the event you did foul your worst case scenario was a yellow card, often just a foul. This no longer works as fouls are punished with the regularity and severity you would expect them to be. Sliding tackles do still work but at a rate of realistic effectiveness thus providing satisfaction when you do win the ball. Their frequency of success also implores you to stay on your feet. Tackling may just be the dark horse of PES 2017 that deserves tremendous credit but has yet to garner any.

The other major flaws with PES 2016 was set pieces, specifically free kicks. We have all seen a million free kicks fly in the top corner. They occurred with such regularity that in the end they were less satisfying than tap ins! In the first build you could score a free kick similar to PES 2016. Now, unfortunately we were only able to play a handful of games but based on these it did appear free kicks have been made more difficult. We can only hope that when PES 2017 is in full throttle that this isn’t an element that can be exploited. There was a similar problem, but to a lesser extent, with corners. A simple push of the cross button and then a tap on shoot would all too often result in an unskilful goal scored from a corner. There needs to be more to scoring from a corner and from what could be drawn from the PES 2017 second build it looks like this has been noted.

The major elements of the game – passing, shooting, dribbling, AI and animations – haven’t really changed from the first build in our opinion. They are discussed here:

Check out the goals compilation and goalkeeper saves compilation, courtesy of PESEP, below:

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