Konami has now launched a free version of PES 2019, called Lite, for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. Those looking to score some solid soccer action but don't necessarily want to pay for the full price can now download this stripped-down title.
The focus of PES 2019 Lite is a mode called "myClub," where players can assemble super squads of their favorite players. This mode is also Konami's gateway to in-app purchases, which is presumably how the studio plans to make money off the free-to-play soccer simulator.
PES 2019 Now Free, Sort Of
Aside from MyClub, PES 2019 Lite also offers offline gaming sessions, which include exhibition matches and skill training exercises. There's also a mode called PES League, wherein players can partake in three vs. three co-op matches and time-limited tournaments.
PES And FIFA
The PES series of games have languished behind the massive success of its rival series, FIFA. As such, Konami's Lite series is part of the company's tradition to drum up interest by giving everyone a taste of the full title.
As Engadget puts it, the PES series has basically lost all of its luster and merely plays second fiddle to FIFA in terms of popularity. Sales numbers paint a bleak picture as well: Chart-Track reported recently that PES 2019 sales were down 42 percent compared to its predecessor. Even if more people bought the game as a digital download this year, the game is plummeting steadily as FIFA becomes the more popular choice for football fans.
It didn't help that Konami lost the license to Champions League this year following a decade of exclusivity, and FIFA 19 quickly swooped down and picked it up, of course. Worse yet, future iterations of PES won't have the Champions League roster. It does still have the Scottish Premiership, however.
Despite everything, PES 2019 received mostly positive reviews. IGN, for instance, said it was the most authentic entry yet and a called Magic Moments as the title's biggest development yet.
"[Magic Moments is] a set of 39 RPG-like traits that are distributed across the roster of players in combinations that give each of them their own personality... Magic Moments go further than merely adding new moves, though. They also offer effects such as fighting spirit (which gives players better performance when fatigued), super sub (where players improve if brought on in the second half), and man marking (which enables a player to more doggedly stick to opponents)."
PES 2019 Lite is available now.