FIFA 20 vs eFootball PES 2020


eFootball PES 2020 vs FIFA 20 - which game is better? (Image credit: Konami)

Some topics are not openly talked about, because discussions can easily get out of hand. These topics include things like religion, sex, politics, and football video games. We'll do it anyway: FIFA 20 vs eFootball PES 2020 - which game is better? We have an opinion, and we take the full risk of comparing the two.

There are some things that come back every year: Easter, Christmas, America's Got Talent, and, of course, FIFA & Pro Evolution Soccer. The latter is an ever-changing battle for the football crown that is probably as close & tight as never before. At least we think so, that's why we believe a FIFA 20 vs eFootball PES 2020 comparison is necessary. Thus, we're getting involved in the battle of the two digital football giants and light a fire where it would probably not be necessary. We're testing the two competitors in the categories graphics & presentation, game modes and gameplay.

Neymar ronaldo

Somebody's going to cry in the end, but remember: It's just a game. (Image credit: UEFA)

FIFA 20 vs eFootball PES 2020: Graphics, style & presentation

They both look good, no immediate losers here. Neither in PES nor in FIFA will you have any problems recognizing your favorite players - thanks to the Frostbite Engine in FIFA and the FOX Engine in PES. The games look fairly similar and it's hard to spot much of a difference on the pitch. However, it's noticeable that the movements in FIFA do look a lot faster and more arcade-y and the Pro Evolution movements are a bit less fluid but that also makes them more realistic: A real human does not always move quite as ideally, as fluid or as swiftly as a video game character.

But if we take a closer look, it becomes clear that PES 2020 is ahead in terms of getting the player's faces right. You don't always notice it when you're playing from a bird's eye view, but here the point still goes to Konami.

Even though there are no major differences in the graphics on the pitch, there are big differences in the visuals of it: In terms of general presentation - menus, style, and the feeling of being part of a football broadcast - FIFA is easily outperforming the Konami competition. Licenses also play a big role in the presentation and with the financial support of EA, FIFA has a huge advantage on that front as well. But still: Konami has secured licenses for Manchester United, Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Juventus. This is especially important for Juventus, where PES 2020 has the exclusive rights and has FIFA 20 players playing with Piemonte Calcio - all the other teams in FIFA still have their names, kits, and logos, which is over 700 teams in 37 leagues. In PES 2020 only 19 of the 24 leagues are fully licensed. In the Premier League, only Manchester United and Arsenal are licensed and in the Spanish league, even Real Madrid appear as Los Blancos. Among the major leagues in PES, only Ligue 1 and Serie A are fully licensed.

Pes2020 juve

Exclusive to PES 2020. (Image credit: Konami)

When it comes to presentation, there is, of course, another very decisive factor: audio. Can PES get something back in here? Hm... no. On the pitch itself, both the FIFA and PES announcers get annoying after hundreds of matches. Off the pitch, however, nobody can mess with FIFA: EA is hunting music and licenses down like a desperate music scout and we already discovered some new favorite tracks thanks to FIFA.

Because of the general presentation, the music, and the licenses, FIFA wins this one. But: The decision was hard. PES 2020 has clearly improved in terms of menus and presentation and even have slightly better graphics than FIFA now. However, EA's overall emphasis on audio, style, and presentation wins out here. Maybe we labeled this category too broad but in the sum of its strengths, FIFA wins.

Noteworthy: The missing licenses can all be downloaded in PES, so at least in retrospect you can have all the correct logos, jerseys, and names.

FIFA 20 vs eFootball PES 2020: Game modes

FIFAhas a Career Mode, UEFA Champions League and a little game mode called Ultimate Team that draws in a bit of people and money. On top of that FIFA has a new street mode called Volta.

eFootball PES 2020 competes with its Master League and Matchday. Master League in particular offers so much that it might as well count for more than one game mode - really, you get a full fledged football manager game here. The problem: FIFA's career mode is also a full-fledged football manager in its own right, so while we love what PES is doing here - we also love what FIFA is putting on offer.
However, PES 2020 has the rights to the UEFA Euro 2020, which is really, really cool. It's also really, really unfortunate, since there’s that virus you might’ve heard about that has vastly different for plans for Euro 2020. Still: What better place to replace the tournament with than the game that actually has the exclusive license for it?

Ultimately FIFA simply has more on offer, but if Volta and Ultimate Team are not your cup of tea at all, then this won't make much of a difference to you. Also, all the game modes in the world can’t save you, if your gameplay is not solid. At the end of the day, we play these games to experience the best digital football possible...

FIFA 20 vs eFootball PES 2020: Gameplay

This one is for all the marbles. This is what matters: Does the game play well or not? Well, we’re definitely not gonna sway the fans among you, but we’re entitled to our subjectively objective opinion, and… PES 2020 simply has better gameplay. Period. Sure, FIFA is fun and at the end of the day, games should be fun. So from that perspective, maybe this one is a wash, but if you’re looking for a real digital representation of the beautiful game that is football, then Konami’s game comes much closer: The animations are much more realistic, the ball and the players have much more weight to them and the ball physics just make more sense. In PES, you actually have midfield battles and don’t score the same goal twice. In FIFA, it feels like the midfield is just an area you pass through and that there is a limited number of goals that just repeat themselves.

On the A.I. - side of things, both games need work, but at least in PES 2020, when you change tactics even just a little bit, you’ll notice the changes on the pitch. In FIFA most tactics, most formations really feel the same all too often. Yes, big changes are felt, but that’s not a good thing, that’s just a must. Small adjustments in FIFA are almost negligible and the adjustments themselves don’t go nearly as deep as what is possible in PES.

Anybody looking for the best actual and realistic representation of football, has a clear winner here. If you’re looking for a fun game with more accessibility and a lower entry barrier, then FIFA is your best bet.

FIFA 20 vs eFootball PES 2020: Verdict

It’s not actually that tough deciding between the two because they offer different experiences. If you want the realistic football simulation with a higher entry barrier and a lot of nitty-gritty to get into - get eFootball PES 2020. If you want a faster, more arcade-y game that offers more dopamine inducing highlights, looks slicker, has more game modes, and more polish - get FIFA 20.

If you can’t decide - get both or hang around EarlyGame to find an alternative that doesn’t require you to sign up for what has basically become a religious choice.

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