eFootball Messi Key Art
eFootball — Key Art

Goodbye PES, Hello eFootball, The New Free to Play Sports Game

Konami has officially renamed the Pro Evolution Soccer (PES) series to eFootball, and it will become a digital free to play experience.

eFootball will release in early Autumn on PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One and PC, with iOS and Android versions to follow. So far, there has been no mention of it releasing on Nintendo Switch. At launch, players on Xbox and PlayStation will be able to play across generations, and by Winter, crossplay will be available across all platforms. However, mobile players will need to use controllers to play against console and PC players.

According to the eFootball roadmap, the game will release with an exhibition mode and 9 clubs: Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Juventus, Manchester United, Arsenal, Corinthians, Flamengo, São Paulo and River Plate. eFootball will also sell game modes as optional DLC, with no mention of PES’ core modes returning. Fortunately, Online Leagues (Name TBC) and a Team Building Mode (Name TBC) have already been confirmed by the roadmap. You can check out the current roadmap below:

eFootball Messi Roadmap
eFootball Roadmap

The newly transformed football game will also be played on a new engine. Previously on Konami’s FOX Engine, eFootball will shift to a custom-built Unreal 4 engine. This new engine will allow the game to use a Motion Matching animation system, allowing Konami to have four times as many animations as previous games. This change will be available on all platforms, including mobile.

Free Seasonal Updates

After speaking with IGN, the series producer, Seitaro Kimura, stated that there will no longer be annual paid releases. Instead, the game will receive regular updates with free, yearly updates every season. This will seemingly include the Match Pass System, Konami’s take on a Battle Pass. Unfortunately, we will have to see in the coming months how monetisation will work within eFootball.

eFootball — Messi
eFootball — Messi

Konami will announce more about the game in late August. Possibly at Gamescom 2021. eFootball will release in early Autumn on PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One and PC.