Konami hasn’t exactly been the most loved company in recent years due to the lack of love they have for their classic games but they still care for PES (Pro Evolution Soccer). However, it's facing a significant rebrand and for PES' next-gen debut, it's now been renamed eFootball.
eFootball has actually been in development for quite some time, as Konami made the odd decision to release PES 2021 as a simple reskin of PES 2020 but with an updated roster, which disappointed a ton of fans who were hoping for a new game, with many expecting a lot of different things from the next-gen version.
Here’s everything we know about eFootball.
eFootball Release Date
It’s not yet known when eFootball will be coming out specifically, outside of a vague "Early Autumn" release date. That'll initially launch for consoles and PC, with a mobile release arriving this Winter.
eFootball will launch on PS4, PS5, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One and PC via Steam. iOS and Android editions are also coming, though they'll launch later on this year.
As part of their big rebranding reveal, Konami offered this new trailer.
eFootball New Gameplay Improvements
Here’s what Konami initially told fans about the game, before starting this rebrand:
As the industry stands at the precipice of an exciting new generation of consoles, we believe that now is the perfect time to share some of our plans for the future of the PES franchise with you," Konami explained ahead of the release of PES 2021. To that end, we are excited to announce that we are hard at work on a next-generation football title that aims to truly embody our core concept of the 'The Pitch Is Ours.
This title is being developed with an updated engine that will enable us to dazzle you with staggering improvements to all areas of the game. Expect more realistic player models and animations, enhanced physics, photorealistic visuals, and much much more.
Upon unveiling eFootball, Konami's also detailed a new "Motion Matching" system, stating:
Motion Matching converts the vast range of movements that players make on the pitch into a series of animations, selecting the most accurate one in real-time. The system provides more than four times as many animations as before, achieving highly realistic movement," Konami continued. Motion Matching will be utilised across all eFootball platforms, including last-gen consoles, PCs and mobile.
eFootball Using Unreal Engine
Konami is ditching their Fox Engine for eFootball. Instead, they'll be switching to Unreal Engine 4. Lennart Bobzien, European brand manager, confirmed to Eurogamer several months back.
Our development team in Japan tried it out, and they've seen they have so much more opportunity to do different things on the pitch when it comes down to gameplay visual effects. When they played around with the Unreal engine, they just decided this was the engine they wanted to use to make the step into the next-console generation. The Unreal engine is the base for the future of the PES series.”
Following previous rumours several weeks ago, Konami's now confirmed that Pro Evolution Soccer is going free-to-play and digital only. They've also outlined a post-launch roadmap, which we've included below:
eFootball Licenses To Add More Italian Clubs
Konami currently has exclusive rights to Juventus and AS Roma. Two high profile Italian teams who are sorely missed from EA Sports FIFA series. But apparently, Konami are set to add two more Italian sides to the PES 2022 roster. Series GM Manorito Hosoda told La Gazzetta dello Sport (Via GamesRadar+)
There are two new Italian teams interested in Konami's export path and who will soon sign a collaboration with us. We plan to create a new export competition in Italy with our five partners, including the most recent two.
At launch, Konami's confirmed we'll see the likes of Barcelona, Juventus, Bayern, and Manchester United.