It's the end of an era, folks! Konami has today announced that the PES brand is officially being dropped and replaced with 'eFootball', described as a "next-generation, free-to-play football simulation experience."
The new game will be out this Autumn for Xbox One, Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S, utilising the Unreal Engine to deliver an overhauled animation system, improved player expression and more.
In terms of the features roadmap, here's what you can expect:
- All-new gameplay experience, powered by Unreal® Engine
- Cross-generation matchmaking (i.e. PlayStation®5 vs. PlayStation®4, Xbox Series X|S vs. Xbox One)
- Local Matches featuring FC Barcelona, Juventus, FC Bayern, Manchester United and more
- Cross-platform matchmaking between consoles and PC (i.e. PlayStation®5 vs. Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation®5 vs. PC Steam®, etc.)
- Team Building Mode (Name TBC) opened – build your own team by acquiring players
- Online Leagues (Name TBC) opened – take your original team and compete in a global, competitive league
- Match Pass system – earn items and players by playing eFootball™
- Mobile controller support added
- Full cross-platform matchmaking across all available platforms including mobile when using a compatible controller
- Professional and amateur esports tournaments kick-off
It's certainly a bold move for the franchise, but it's sad to see that the PES name is finally being dropped after all these years. It remains to be seen how the free-to-play model will fare for eFootball over the next year, and we're admittedly concerned that there appears to be an almost total lack of offline single-player modes on the roadmap.
We're intrigued to get more details on eFootball over the coming weeks and months.
What are your thoughts on the announcement of eFootball? Tell us in the comments below.