Forget Cristiano Ronaldo, overpaid prima donnas and sky-high ticket prices. Nothing divides football fanatics more than the annual dust off between Pro Evo and FIFA. And that's truer than ever this year, with the gap closing between the two super franchises.
Despite plenty of public noise to the contrary, Pro Evo remains the ultimate football sim out there. While the new 2009 edition plays and feels almost identical to last year's version, it still has the edge when it comes to gameplay. Players are rugged in the tackle, you can't just waltz through a defence and tactics remain as important as ever.
Like in previous versions of Pro Evo, goals aren't easy to come by, making it a far more realistic proposition than its FIFA rival. It means you can't dole out unrealistic drubbings, but you do get the satisfaction of crafting classic goals rather than hammering in a 40-yard screamer without too much thought.
Les grandes equipes…
This time round there's also the addition of an official Champions League mode, although the lack of proper team names does begin to grate. Much as we love names like Yorkshire Orange, we'd far rather turn out as the Premier League–destroying Hull City.
Online play remains Pro Evo's crowning glory though, but once again, changes are hardly revolutionary compared to last year. In all, it's still the classic game we know and love, but it would have been nice to see just a few more tweaks and changes.
Konami Pro Evolution Soccer 2009
Still the best and most realistic football sim around... just