When Konami announced that its legendary football series Pro Evolution Soccer was rebranding to “eFootball,” it has to be said that eyebrows were raised at the title choice. Regardless, rebrands can often provide an adrenaline shot for stale franchises, and with PES so cemented as a fantastic soccer title, fans were eager to see what eFootball would be bringing to “The Beautiful Game.”
The answer turned out to be “Carnage.”
eFootball 2022, which launched on PC and consoles in the fall of 2021, was a disaster. Plagued with issues ranging from terrible visual glitches, buggy animations, awkward controls, poor movement mechanics, and incredibly thin content and gameplay options, fans could hardly believe that the franchise could take such a nose-dive in so short a timespan. Call it “pulling a WWE 2K20.”
Both critics and the community quickly laid bare their thoughts on the title — as communities tend to do — leading to eFootball 2022 bagging the dubious honor of “Worst Rated Steam Game Ever” within just 24 hours of its launch. Deflated, Konami would quickly issue a press release on social media, addressing the torrent of abuse being hurled at the terrible title.
“We are very sorry for the problems, and want to assure everyone we will take all concerns seriously and strive to improve the current situation,” said the publisher. “This work will be continuously updated, quality will be improved and content will be added consistently. […] We will do our utmost to satisfy as many users as possible, and we look forward to your continued support of eFootball 2022.”
The first major update for eFootball 2022 is now on the verge of arrival, some six months after the title’s initial launch. Version 1.0.0 brings with it redress of much of the faulty footballer’s tribulations. As reported by VGC in their in-depth preview, the new update hopes to put right so much of the game’s woes, polishing the visuals; overhauling the controls, improving pass speed and player A.I.; and adding the very useful and fucking hilariously titled “Stunning Kicks” mechanic.
So, while the wait has been a long one for PES/eFootball fans, it seems that the new update is genuinely looking to rescue the title from oblivion. Perhaps it will not make the 2022 iteration any to write home about, but hopefully, the development team can build upon the lessons learned via this trial-by-fire and hopefully deliver a far superior and more fan-pleasing title for the 2023 season.
eFootball 2022 Version 1 launches April 14, check out the update via VGC’s video report.