Reviewed On: Xbox 360

Available For: 3DS, PC, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PSP, Wii, and Xbox 360

Publisher: Konami

Developer: Konami

Genre: Sports

Age: 3 (PEGI)

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The words of return of the king are uttered each year with every edition of Pro Evolution Soccer, but this year PES really is battling for its lost crown.

Since PES has been on next generation consoles, it's failed to live up to its PS2 predecessors, but this year the game moves as fluidly as Lionel Messi in full flight.

In the past PES was easy to pick up and hard to master, and now that sensation of just one more game is back with a vengeance.

The game introduces new layers of control, quite literally. When taking the ball down at height or on the ground PES 2013 new first-touch controls can make-or-break whether you beat your marker or are on the end of a hefty challenge.

In defence, no longer are the days of pressing a button constantly in the hope you might just make a tackle. Now you have to work hard to time your tackles. The satisfaction of putting Cristiano Ronaldo on the floor with a strong shoulder barge never gets old thanks to this system.

Tonnes of new animations have been added and some players have been given a unique player ID which makes them move and look like a spitting image of their real life counter parts. For instance when you control Barcelona’s Andres Iniesta, the unique way he passes the ball and moves with his head up and jinks around opponents looks exactly like on the TV. It really is a wonderful addition to the game.

Even with the improvements in gameplay, there are still some real niggles. Goalkeepers still need lots of work - belly-flops and the inability to catch the ball means keepers are more like Heurelho Gomes than Petr Cech The game also looks polished, but there is still room for improvement graphically. Annoyingly the in-game sound has not changed and commentators Jon Champion and Jim Beglin provide plenty of poor puns and irrelevant phases.

But despite those niggles PES has undergone a dramatic revamp this year could be a worthy contender to FIFA 2013.

SCORE: 8 / 10

PROS: Deep gameplay experience – the game offers tonnes of different controls and moves to learn, and it really is worth putting the time in. The game is immersive because of it’s player individuality that really makes the action look lifelike.

CONS: Poor keepers let the game down and make for a frustrating expierence when they don’t even bother to dive or can’t catch the ball. The graphics are acceptable but there is lots of room for improvement and the sound also needs a complete revamp.