PES 2011 saw the series undergo a huge move towards total control, and featured the most advanced raft of gameplay additions, control options, and animations in PES history – catering for both ardent PES players and newcomers alike. Central to its total freedom of play, PES 2011 introduces a power bar for each player that allows the user to determine the exact strength and placement of every pass and shot. Balls can be spread absolutely anywhere with utter precision, with long balls into space, short passes to feet and intricate one-twos allowing the player to dictate play and control the tempo of a match.
The game’s freedom of play is also extended via new AI routines designed to place every move and decision in the user’s hands. AI no longer intervenes and PES 2011 players now need to sense and react to threats; while passes will not automatically reach the nearest player. Instead, all-new routines facilitate complete control both of the player and their chosen actions in every respect to give the player sublime control over every movement. As such, the specially-designed control system allows total control over every element of play. The triangulation of passes and making space using clever runs becomes paramount, and build-up play is everything. Likewise, dribbling and close control are tougher to master, and the days of making streaking runs through the centre of the park are over, as PES mirrors the real-life football.
PES 2011 also marks the introduction of Master League Online, wherein the hugely popular mode where players build and develop a championship-winning team has been taken online, and where players bid against each other for the world’s best players. Similarly, PES 2011 is the only game to feature the officially-licensed UEFA Champions League™, UEFA Europa Cup™ and UEFA Super Cup™ competitions, and also introduces the Copa Libertadores, South America’s most influential and important club-based competition.