Generally favorable reviews - based on 41 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 41
  2. Negative: 0 out of 41
Buy On
  1. PSM3 Magazine UK
    Nov 13, 2011
    Arguably less fluid and immediate than its rival FIFA 12, PES 2012's superior single-player game is nevertheless deep, challenging and often outright magical. [Dec 2011, p.102]
  2. Is it better than FIFA? Will the Arse win the league? No and no. [Nov 2011, p.110]
  3. Oct 10, 2011
    The mechanics that have made the series great in years past have made a return, while new additions like offensive off-ball control add an almost endless number of ways players can attack and score.
  4. Sep 30, 2011
    On the pitch this is the best PES ever. It lacks a lot in the game modes though and Konami needs to pick up their ambitions for next year.
  5. Sep 22, 2011
    This year's PES title won't change anyone's mind about the series. It hasn't gotten any less complex, but it also hasn't lost any of its brilliance. In that sense, its success is all its own.
  6. Oct 2, 2011
    If you haven't played a soccer game for a few years, I would recommend that you check out PES 2012 because it offers both a sturdy single-player and multiplayer engine that has a considerably amount of longevity and replay value.
  7. Sep 29, 2011
    PES 2012 delivers better gameplay than its prequel: it's more fun and succeeds in satisfying the player. It's sad that the AI ruins all of this and there aren't any big major steps in the gameplay modes.
  8. Sep 23, 2011
    A polished evolution of what we saw last year, as if PES 2011 was midway to the goal PES 2012 has achieved. It changes some of the controls, and greatly enhances AI, although it still has its flaws, especially with the goalkeepers. But, above all, PES 2012 is a really engaging and fun football game, with much more variety and charm than previous entries.
  9. Oct 3, 2011
    PES 12 is a great soccer game that shouldn't be compared to FIFA 12. PES 2012 is different and is a lot better than other recent games in the franchise.
  10. Oct 10, 2011
    To put it frankly, unless you are some die-hard, old school fan of Pro Evolution Soccer, save your pennies and stick with FIFA. PES 2012 isn't a terrible game at all, but head-to-head, it's not the one controlling the ball; it puts on a show that your little brother might like.
  11. Oct 16, 2011
    PES 2012 is definitely a great game and deserves to be looked at by sports fans and soccer fans alike. Sure, the lack of an official FIFA license kind of sucks, but the solid visuals, good sound, and easy to pick up, but tough to master controls make this a virtual soccer game worth playing.
  12. Oct 10, 2011
    While the 2012 iteration of the Pro Evolution Soccer franchise is definitely better than its predecessors, it won't even get close to EA's contemporary FIFA masterpiece. The main reasons are the hideously bad AI, the ancient game modes and yet again the lack of proper licensing.
  13. Sep 22, 2011
    PES 2012 is more than just an update for the forgettable PES 2011. It's a huge step forward for the Konami series. The best Pro Evolution Soccer game this gen.
  14. Playstation Official Magazine Australia
    Mar 6, 2012
    So that's Pro Evo 12 – not massively different to Pro Evo 11, but enough of an improvement to warrant the upgrade. So far as comparisons to FIFA go, our view is that it is neither better nor worse, but simply... different. And that's just fine with us. [Dec 2011, p73]
  15. Playstation: The Official Magazine (US)
    Oct 29, 2011
    While comparatively subtle to 2011's makeover, the new coat of polish is still quite noticeable. [Dec 2011, p.73]
  16. Oct 22, 2011
    A solid simulation of the sport, PES 2012 is a good addition to the franchise. With a few tweaks, PES could return next year as one of the best soccer games available. For now, it will have to settle as just being a pretty good one.
  17. Oct 20, 2011
    PES 2012 gives you spectacular football if you practice enough. But some faults make this a step in the right direction, not the ultimate football game.
  18. Oct 12, 2011
    But for all of its glaring eccentricities, PES 2012's emphasis on fast-flowing attacking football over stodgy defensive play is still capable of winning us over.
  19. Oct 11, 2011
    For all of its drawbacks, when the whistle blows and the game kicks off, PES 2012 offers a satisfying, unpredictable and utterly enjoyable game of virtual football.
  20. Oct 10, 2011
    PES 2012 is the game that fans have been seeking. There are things to evolve, but at least we were convinced that "Seabass" has found a path and a direction to this simulator.
  21. Sep 29, 2011
    As a long-term PES acolyte who has favoured FIFA for the last four seasons, I'm heartened to see Konami's series finally approaching something close to its best form – even if it's not the domineering force it was in its glory days of 2004/5.
  22. Sep 29, 2011
    PES 2012 plays an extremely entertaining brand of football, largely sweeping away the complaints of the two previous versions in the process. There are problems for sure, but it's nice to know that whichever of the football titans you choose this year, you'll get a decent result.
  23. Sep 28, 2011
    PES 12 may lack new modes, but substantial improvements to its AI, speed, and controls make it an exciting football game that's a lot of fun to play.
  24. Sep 22, 2011
    It's the best PES so far, but in a match-up with FIFA 12, it can only lose. PES can't decide whether it's arcade or simulation, and so the crown goes to its opponent.
  25. Sep 22, 2011
    PES 2012 improves in several key aspects and fans will be pleased; but it still has many issues from previous entries. Control-wise, it's faster, but animations lack quality and goalkeepers are worse than ever. The Community mode and the online features are its main achievements.
    Sep 21, 2011
    Back in good shape last year, PES now confirms that it is a very good football simulation again. Of course, there is still some flaws here, but we will above all retain its increased AI, its improved and fluid gameplay, its new modes... and the challenges of the training mode appear to be a really nice touch.
  27. Sep 29, 2011
    An enjoyable soccer game, still haunted by its own ghosts. Goalkeepers are broken, and there are big issues with physics simulation and AI. Fans will keep on enjoiyng it, but true soccer is to be found somewhere else.
  28. Oct 25, 2011
    But as I stated initially, I feel like PES 2012, while still a pretty good soccer game in it's own right, has fallen significantly behind the FIFA series, like a player past his prime who has lost a step... and he knows it.
  29. Oct 17, 2011
    With its solid list of national teams, good selection of competitions and game modes, including the Champion's League, and simple arcade-style gameplay, PES 2012 offers a footballing experience that's accessible and enjoyable.
  30. Oct 11, 2011
    For those that aren't wed to PES or are new to soccer video games, you will likely find greater enjoyment out of FIFA, due to accessibility and the broader community options. Konami used to be top dog in the competition with EA. However, a more conservative approach to innovation for PES, along with huge strides taken in FIFA, have put Konami in a position that demands innovation and retooling in order for there to actually be a competition in future years.
  31. Play UK
    Nov 27, 2011
    Drop the Football Life rubbish, please. [Issue#210, p.82]
  32. Oct 10, 2011
    If you're looking for a competent, although not quite as complete or well rounded alternative to FIFA, give PES 2012 a look.
  33. Oct 26, 2011
    PES 2012 does nothing revolutionary to the series, but the new Off the Ball control and slightly improved gameplay raises the overall experience. Still behind it's EA Sports competition, who offers a more fine tuned approach to the sport, Konami at least takes one solid step forward this season.
  34. Oct 9, 2011
    Whether you can forgive the rushed dialogue text, the constant nagging and the unfinished presentation is a matter of personal patience but those who make apologies for the dodgy physics are giving Konami free reign to present another unfinished game next year. I think PES fans deserve better than this.
  35. Oct 3, 2011
    Konami still hasn't "struck gold" in this generation. Although the developers tried to improve some aspects of this year's edition, it's only after the inevitable patch that some of the major problems are dealt with.
  36. Sep 28, 2011
    That being said, PES should still be top of your shopping list if you're after a game that takes the most exciting elements of the beautiful game and concentrates them into one package.
  37. Sep 26, 2011
    It's still fun and there will be people who will prefer this to FIFA. But, in our opinion, it has too many flaws that should have been fixed long ago.
  38. Sep 22, 2011
    No two matches -- even between the same teams -- ever feel quite the same, and it's that element of surprise that just might, at least offline, make Pro Evolution my go-to soccer game this season.
  39. Oct 12, 2011
    PES 2012 doesn't help itself by remaining in stagnant waters, and if it doesn't receive a complete overhaul next year, then we're afraid the end is nigh.
  40. Sep 23, 2011
    Quotation forthcoming.
  41. Oct 3, 2011
    It's too obtuse for a newcomer to the sport, but those who understand the gravity of the phrase, "downloading the right Option File" and all that comes with it, PES 2012 is worth a look, once Konami has finally ironed out its issues.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 133 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 62 out of 133
  2. Negative: 28 out of 133
  1. Sep 27, 2011
    The PES series may have taken a dive the previous few years but the latest incarnation is a welcome return to the feeling of ease and fun thatThe PES series may have taken a dive the previous few years but the latest incarnation is a welcome return to the feeling of ease and fun that the old PES games had, its not as realistic as the other game from EA but it plays a fantastic game of footie. Dont believe the negatives... all no doubt fans of that other game who havent even touched this. Full Review »
  2. Sep 28, 2011
    PES2012 is in all ways an inferior product to this years Fifa12. The graphics, gameplay, animation, onlineplay and singleplayer gametypes arePES2012 is in all ways an inferior product to this years Fifa12. The graphics, gameplay, animation, onlineplay and singleplayer gametypes are all inferior to Fifa12. I would say that PES2012 competes in quality with last years Fifa11 but even then it would a hard time to reach the quality of EA's offering. Just a waste of money when you have Fifa12. Full Review »
  3. Sep 29, 2011
    This plays a great game of football - player AI movement and response is great. There is a lot of variety within games, so this feels lessThis plays a great game of football - player AI movement and response is great. There is a lot of variety within games, so this feels less robotic than the other title, and so more realistic. The goalkeeper problem is overstated, and I have not noticed a problem there at all. Full Review »