The most realistic football game for the Wii is let down by poor graphics and limited improvements to last year's version.
- Complex but rewarding remote and nunchuk controls
- Realistic and challenging AI.
- Terrible stadium and crowd graphics
- Very few new features in game modes
- Steep learning curve for casual football fans.
UK REVIEW--This year's Pro Evolution Soccer for the Wii offers by far the most realistic version of the sport for Nintendo's console, using an in-depth control scheme that takes time to get used to but eventually provides great rewards. There are only limited improvements over previous Wii releases in the franchise and some parts of the game are severely lacking in visual detail, but if you're looking for a satisfying and tactical football experience on Nintendo's console, PES 2011 is the game for you.
PES 2011 supports a deep and complex control scheme by default. Instead of adapting the controls of the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 releases to the Wii Remote and Nunchuk, Konami has designed a control scheme specifically for the Wii. By pointing the remote at the screen, you control a cursor which determines the direction of passes, shots, and player runs. If you're used to traditional controllers, then the default controls are complicated at first, but thankfully, PES 2011 offers plenty of well-delivered tutorials to get you up to speed as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, these tutorials are still geared towards players with a good understanding of the sport, so newcomers might struggle. However, once you're familiar with the controls, they work like a charm, providing you with incredible freedom during build-up play and encouraging creative passing.
While attacking feels open and imaginative, defending is often a complete nightmare. Pointing at players to change which one you are controlling is unresponsive, and shaking the Nunchuk to perform sliding tackles simply isn't accurate enough, especially on harder AI difficulties or against human opponents who are capable of reacting faster to incoming tackles. PES 2011 for the Wii also introduces 360-degree control for the first time. While this is a welcome addition to the series, it isn't really capitalised on, because so much of the movement is performed by pointing the remote to where you want a player to move. Therefore, players still run in diagonal lines, rather than making the tight turns possible with 360 degree movement on a control stick. Thankfully, for the more traditional football game fan, there is also support for the Classic Controller, which provides a control scheme similar to that in the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions of the game, making defending far more manageable and the 360-degree dribbling far more impactful.
One of the most striking things about PES 2011 is that where FIFA tones down its gameplay for the Wii audience, that's not the case here. The AI performs exactly as you would expect in a Pro Evolution Soccer game, using intelligent tactics and thoughtful passing. The game is also very challenging on the harder difficulties. This is terrific for anyone who has been crying out for a realistic football game on the Wii; however, it might take a while for novices to come to grips with this version of PES. The complicated controls, combined with challenging AI, certainly provide a steep learning curve to more casual football fans. Especially when the tutorials assume that the player already has a decent knowledge of the sport. If you can stick with the game, though, you will find that every goal you score is a satisfying reward for learning the controls and battling against the competitive AI.
Last year's new My Team mode returns in PES 2011. After loading up the game and selecting your favourite team, you can then import Mii characters to create a new squad. Once you've added your characters to the team, you can customise them and improve their abilities using hearts that you collect by performing well across all of the other modes in the game. There is also a memorabilia shop where you can buy special items that give players unique ability boosts. For example, buying a famous striker's boots might greatly increase a player's shooting ability. It's great fun to create a team made up of your friends, and customising them can be addictive, but once you get into a match and your team is running around with giant Mii heads, the novelty wears off quickly. In a game that tries to provide a realistic version of the sport, playing with Miis takes more away from the experience than it adds to it.
- Player Reviews: 1
- Game Universe:
- Pro Evolution Soccer 4 (PC),
- Pro Evolution Soccer (PS2, PS),
- Pro Evolution Soccer 5 (XBOX, PS2, PC, GC),
- Winning Eleven: Pro Evolution Soccer 2007 (X360, PS2, PC, PSP, DS),
- Pro Evolution Soccer 2008 (PS3, X360, PS2, PSP, DS, PC, WII, MOBILE),
- Pro Evolution Soccer 2009 (X360, PS3, PC, PS2, PSP, WII),
- Pro Evolution Soccer 2010 (X360, PS3, PC, PSP, PS2, WII),
- Pro Evolution Soccer 2011 3D (X360, PS3, WII, PSP, PC, PS2, 3DS, IP, WINM),
- Pro Evolution Soccer 2012 (PS3, X360, PSP, WII, PS2, 3DS, PC, WINM),
- Pro Evolution Soccer 2002 (GC)