Pro Evolution Soccer 2011 3D • Page 2

Long ball game.

The game's locked to Player's View in the demo units, but I was able to grab a sneaky look at a full preview version. Here, the game is displayed in standard side-on view: instantly familiar to fans, but the 3D effect – even when set to max – is not very dramatic and appears to make little real difference either way.

Murphy tells me: "When you're playing it in Player's View it really makes a difference. You can see a different perspective, perhaps more like how a footballer would on a pitch, and it does change the way that you play, the way that you see passes."

It's clear that for new tech thrills, Player's View is where it's at, so let's hope extended time with the game reveals it to be a viable option for serious PES play.

There was no opportunity to test wireless features in Amsterdam, but we do know that the game will not support full online multiplayer. Instead, you'll have to make do with local matches over wi-fi.

Meanwhile, Nintendo's not-yet-convincing StreetPass feature is exploited here to 'play out' games while in sleep mode using Master League data – unlocking players and teams over time for use in the actual game if you're victorious.

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It's no PS3, but the increased power of 3DS makes PES quite the looker on a small screen.

While the 3D display is being a flashy bastard up top, the touch screen has the unglamorous supporting role of displaying the radar in-game, and can be used for additional commands such as making substitutions.

Where the bottom screen could shine is off-pitch, with Game Plan strategy fiddling now possible using the stylus – which ought to facilitate the process no end.

Beyond the visual trickery, PES 2011 3DS controls the same and feels as responsive as the PSP version, with the added bonus of the console's well-designed analogue nub. With its indented surface giving a far better feel than PSP's equivalent, you should feel more comfortably in control of your players without the need to switch to the d-pad and lose subtlety.

A release date isn't confirmed but Konami is aiming to be there on day one, 'launch window' at worst. And, as noted, that represents a great chance to make a mark on a new console and send a message to EA ahead of the inevitable arrival of FIFA.

As it stands, PES 2011 is a gorgeous example of the 3DS hardware and the potential of 3D to be more than just a sexy gimmick. We'll let you know if the game lives up to the promise as soon as we can get hold of a copy.

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Johnny Minkley

Johnny Minkley

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Johnny Minkley is a veteran games writer and broadcaster, former editor of Eurogamer TV, VP of gaming charity SpecialEffect, and hopeless social media addict.

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