Career Mode, Game Play, Goals, Highlights, Transfers

European Road Trip

Regular readers of the blog will recall that after 10 seasons of detailing the daily ins and outs of domestic league and cup action, I have decided to take a new route with the blog for the remainder of this footy gaming year, and just comment and post on The Champions League matches, after we qualified for the first team last season as Premier League winners, and also the international matches as I decided to take over the England National side, alongside club football with Forest.

To get some pre-season dealings out of the way, I signed 2 new players, Kimpembe, a quality 88 rated Centre back, who joined for 58 million plus Abad, a backup GK going the other way, and Adli, an 84 rated Centre Mid, for 22 million in a cash plus player swap, with Grujic the makeweight, I signed Adli as he has superb shot power and long range shooting stats, I play him in the AMF hole just behind the CF, with the hopes of firing off a few long rangers.

This is my starting 11 in the league and Champions League for Forest:

CL Squad.png

First up was the climax of the European Championships group, with qualification guaranteed after 6 matches, the last 2 were a formality, but needed playing anyway,

the below clip shows the final 2 matches against Switzerland and Romania respectively:

The final group finished up as shown, we are through to the European Championships proper.

euro champs group.png

Next up was the opening game of the UEFA Champions League, we were drawn in a group with Lyon, Spartak Moscow and Fenerbache, France, Russia and Turkey await.

Fenerbache were the opening opponents, away in a noisy hostile atmosphere:

Great result to run out 2-0 winners, and get our campaign off to a great start, Lyon up next.

CL group.png

23 thoughts on “European Road Trip”

  1. Paul – this was a fantastic idea, a great change of pace from the routine season-after-season thing, which I feel sometimes on the other side of the aisle.

    Strikes me that losing the CL licence was the most grievous blow to PES, ever, probably. You’re certainly not wrong about EA bringing the atmosphere.

    Loved how you tried to hack down that Romania player at the end there, a truly vicious lunge that we all do in footy games, and throughout all the clips it’s evident how pace really counts in FIFA, as it should, pace being the difference a lot of the time in so-called real life.

    Do you find the CPU punishes you with over-depleted stamina and injuries when simming so many matches? That’s a great squad you’ve got now by the way, and none of them really star names, you must have grown fond of them in an ML kind of way?

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  2. NG – Im enjoying the speed at which i can whizz through the season by simming the league matches, as a result we are top of the Premier League having played 5 (all simmed) and won all 5 !
    There’s not really anything new to show on a twice weekly or weekly basis i the league, except for new signings twice a season, and after 10 seasons of detailing tactics, player stats, training, league and cup matches etc, its nice to have afresh new approach.

    This style should see me up until Mid June with once weekly posts, when I then go on holiday for 2 weeks so that should signal the culmination of this season, and the journey of the UCL, and World Cup matches.

    EA have done well with the UCL license, obviously the presentation is top notch, but the actual match atmosphere, the new commentary team, the ball, the ad hoardings, banners etc, and the crowd chants being specific to clubs, it all just oozes big game immersion, the main reason I can never get my head around this ‘FIFA is empty’ debacle.

    The Romania hack was a bit of a kerfuffle, my thumb slipped off the pad, and I hastily mashed the button, pressing slide tackle by mistake which caused the penalty.

    Pace is huge is FIFA, since switching back to Normal game speed from Slow, its very noticeable with players that have pace.
    Dennis had bags of pace, whereas my new CF,or old CF, but newly starting CF, Urettaviscaya isn’t pacey, but has deadly finishing and a great touch
    Brewster is lightning but is out injured at the moment.

    I haven’t noticed any stamina issues whilst simming, but am only a few games in, will keep an eye on that as we go on. Stamina and fatigue was certainly a key factor when playing the games for real, fixture pileups often saw me start the game with a half dead team.

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  3. Nice going Paul! Like the direction you’re taking for the blog with focus mostly on CL. I’m doing something similar gameplay wise and am just skipping all non CL games. So far it looks and sounds great but for me scripting levels are being ramped up to unbearable. 3 games in, the first one was good but the next two were horrible. Like pes at its worst horrible. Will try to persevere but I won’t be doing this for long if it persists.

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  4. #1 – I’ve only played one match in the UCL so far, so will keep an eye out for the buggery.
    I expect some form of scripting as they need to try to mimic the intense difficulty of the Champs league games, but obviously not through total cheating bastadery!!

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  5. Paul – fully agree! It’s just too overt for me as it was / is in pes. I have no tolerance for that anymore I’ve noticed, so part of this is definitely down to my own attitude towards it. Curious to see how you get on!

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  6. #1 – I will keep an eye on it then, will be instantly noticeable as I am only playing UCL and international matches.

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  7. great technique off the pads by our man Dujon there. Watching your footage Paul it still strikes me there is something very old school footy gaming about FIFA19, the exaggerated knock-on sprint into space, almost 8 directional movement when turning sharply. Needless to say these are big positives

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  8. Abbeyhill. If you turn sharply using sprint then the turn angles are sharper. As they would be on real life. Using L1 close control allows you to turn sharply and keep the ball in a tighter possession circle. As in real life.
    I.much prefer these mechanics as opposed to the ‘any player can dribble like messi’/approach of PES.

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  9. I’m done with rdr2 Paul. I know you’re not an rpg person but for all it’s stunning graphics, quite decent story and huge free roam it all feels slightly hollow to me. Basically, you, me, anyone else on here and their best mate could play it and we’d all have exactly the same experience. The only element you can customise are your clothes. The missions have to be done to unlock some simple free roam things such as fishing, some of the challenges can’t be done until you’ve played far enough to open up certain things and you can’t even opt for a black hat type attitude as simply shooting a chicken brings half the local law out, and once you are wanted you get shut out of some activities. With a classic like skyrim you can be whatever you want and play outside of missions as you see fit. With rdr2 you’re Arthur and you just do what you’re told. It was a nice ride but ultimately it is far cry at the ok corral.

    P.s nice footage, any other film of 80s windies legends?

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  10. Turf. That’s exactly the feel I got from.RDR2 too. Looks stunning but relies on aesthetics too heavily. Quite a scripted storyline and very linear. Still kssn to play it to conclusion but its low down on my must get to list.

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  11. exactly Paul, although these mechanics look slightly unusual compared to the ‘slick fluid responsiveness’ mantra, to me they suggested much better player individuality

    as a big fan of open world single player adventures RDR2 looked tempting but having played the three genre classics of this generation Witcher 3 (completed), Zelda BOTW (almost completed) and Metal Gear Solid 5 (about two thirds) I am not convinced it quite measures up

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  12. Abbeyhill – not yet got to the witcher so can’t compare but while in rdr2 you can ignore missions and just go riding eventually you will run out of things to do as a lot of weapons, areas and activities unlock with missions. The missions themselves don’t have options, alternative ways to tackle a problem or anything relating to skills you’ve built up (unlike MGS). There are a series of challenges that give a few experience rewards but you can’t complete a lot of them until after you’ve completed the missions so what does it matter if you end up as John Wayne when the story has finished. I love how skyrim lets you be an evil Mage or Robin Hood or axe swinging meathead, rdr2 just lets everyone do exactly the same thing, there is no real long term value. A stunning ride for quite a while but as Paul says way way too linear for that type of game.

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  13. I have heard so much about the Witcher 3, and its lauded within the gaming community, CDProjektRed are the new Rockstar in this genre, which is why I’m beyond excited for CyberPunk 2077 whenever it hits.

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  14. I’m still deep into Fallout4 and estimate I won’t be done with that for many months to come. At some point I’ll probably just sprint to the end of the campaign, as I want to start again on Survival – I have a feeling it could be one of the greatest ‘game game’ experiences of my life. After that, the only other open world game I’d ever think about would be Witcher3, and then we’re likely into PS5 territory. I’ve still got GTAV on my PS4 hard drive, purchased on the day of release and marvelled at it along with everyone else. But no, it’s never happened and never will. This is more about the way we live than the way the games are. I keep saying it but I need a couple of hours to really feel it’s worth playing a ‘game game’. They’re not the sort I can comfortably pick up and put down in 45 mins, or for a quick 20 mins before work, etc.

    Re. CyberPunk2077 I’m more excited for it as a sci-fi fan wanting to see if the world is worth entering and walking around in, than I am for the game. Would love it to have Dark Souls-type difficulty.

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  15. Hit the nail on the head there NG, with the “This is more about the way we live than the way the games are” comment.

    So many great games, RDR2, Farcry 5, GTA, Detroit, Witcher 3, that are great games and well worth investing time into, but due to living an adult life and the responsibilities that come with it, time is valuable and those games just dont fit into the pick up and play, easy access mould that suits our lifestyles.

    If I was a teenager again and had 6 hours after school every night to sit and play games then it would be different. Dipping in and out of those types of games just doesn’t work.
    Think thats why I loved Uncharted so much, it was a mix of the two, immersive story telling, open world etc but very linear in its approach and I was able to have 30 mins on it, come back 2 weeks later and just carry on.

    Games that involve collecting, combining, searching, strategy, just take alot longer and as I dont have that much time, I simply don’t play them.

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  16. NG – I certainly hope cyberpunk does NOT have dark souls difficulty but rather a notch below. In an open world setting I think such a punishing level of difficulty will only frustrate. Dark souls 3 is putting me through the wringer for sure, good grief. It should definitely be harder than, say, skyrim though.

    I know I’ve said it before but to my eyes witcher 3 is truly the greatest game ever by a comfortable margin. Also – once you go survival on fallout4 you’ll find its the *only* to play. I can almost guarantee that you won’t be going back to “normal” afterwards.

    If only we weren’t constricted by silly things such as “life” and “time”.

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  17. Paul – my beloved XCOM series does lend itself to quick bursts of play, but even here I limit myself to days off work for that.

    #1 – I do fear it’ll be ‘generic open-world game #2341’ in a gorgeous sci-fi setting, with a heavily focus-grouped difficulty. In fact I’m not banking on it being anything else, and am really just looking for a sci-fi world to hang out in à la Skyrim. If it comes with anything like F4’s Survival (rather than it being a later DLC option) of course that changes everything and even the most generic difficulty will be transformed. Then I might even do a Day 1 purchase of a ‘game game’ like this for the first time since MGS5.

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  18. Cyberpunk2077 will be a pre-order Steelbook Ultra deluxe edition purchase for me.
    It looks gorgeous, the class systems will give some depth to the way you play the game and difficulty and the story looks interesting.

    I literally built my games/movie room with this game in mind!

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  19. Paul – and rightfully so. I’m so pumped for this as you just know cd projekt red will deliver.

    NG – this is why I think your fears of it generic are unfounded. CD projekt red have an impeccable single player track record and do not – at least not yet – cater to the Lowest comment denominator. Kind of like Bethesda circa morrowind. I have the utmost faith that cyberpunk will be a single player masterpiece.

    Paul – how are you getting on in the CL? Group stage was a horrible script fest for me save one match. Now in the group of 16 and that seems to be a bit easier on the scriptfuckery front.

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  20. #1 – Details about CL coming up in tomorrows post !!! 😉
    I will say I haven’t seen too much scripting, but on the flipside, the presentation and atmosphere of matches is incredible!

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