Xbox shock: Pro Evolution Soccer confirmed!
12th Mar 2004 | 10:43
Woo hoo! Konami has sent shockwaves of sporting justice through the gaming world today with the official announcement of Pro Evolution Soccer for Xbox. (Just typing that makes us shake with excitement). Come on!
Konami's incredible franchise - which is widely regarding by those in the know as the greatest football series in history has, in Europe at least, been the exclusive property of PlayStation consoles, giving Sony a key advantage in the console war in this territory.
But Konami has now revealed that Pro Evo will make its debut on Xbox in Q4 of this year; Pro Evolution Soccer 4 (title TBC) will also be releasing on PlayStation 2, and while a Konami spokesperson refused to comment on exact timings, sources close to the company have revealed that the title will lead on PlayStation 2 with the Xbox launching around a month later.
"We are delighted to be bringing what is rightly seen as the pinnacle of football titles to a new legion of fans," commented Kunio Neo, President, Konami of Europe. "It is one of Konami's most prestigious and most important titles, and we anticipate that the Xbox version will enjoy the same phenomenal level of success as its predecessors on other formats."
"Pro Evolution Soccer is a fantastic football simulation," added Michel Cassius, senior director, Xbox platform and marketing. "Konami's reputation for delivering stunning match-day action that plays almost identically to the real thing is renowned across the globe.
"Coupled with the fantastic graphics and advanced gameplay that Xbox offers, we foresee one of the greatest transfers of all time when Pro Evolution Soccer signs for Xbox." Nice cliché juggling, son.
As we revealed some months ago, the exclusivity deal which Konami had in place with Sony for the PES series expired after Pro Evolution Soccer 3 and Microsoft has seized the advantage, fully aware that it was a matter of the utmost importance to secure the franchise for its console.
But the key issue is of course online play: Halo 2 excepted, if there's one game that would have Euro Xbox fans slobbering all over Live like rabid dogs it's Pro Evolution Soccer.
Microsoft knows this, Konami knows this and Seabass, legendary creator of the series, also revealed his own fierce desire to bring the series onto Xbox Live in an exclusive interview with us last year (see here for details).
A spokesperson for Konami refused to comment on this matter when questioned; further investigation suggests that the Live aspect is still undetermined, with one senior Microsoft source commenting this morning: "We're still not sure if it's happening yet." Rest assured we'll be watching this one like a hawk.
Pro Evolution Soccer is coming to Xbox. Savour the moment. Then bombard Konami and Microsoft with demands for Live play!