Pelé Soccer Legend: Game Review
Pelé: Soccer Legend is the official tie-in game for the movie Pelé: Birth of a Legend, featuring Brazilian football’s greatest ever player. The game, developed by New York-based mobile games studio Cosi games released in May this year and is available on both Android and iOS platforms.
The mobile game has now been brought to the web by Dutch cross-platform game publisher Poki. This is the second collaboration between Cosi games and Poki after teaming up for Muhammad Ali: Puzzle King earlier this year.
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Coming to the game, the official synopsis reads “Pelé: Soccer Legend is a new soccer experience with streamlined gesture controls, featuring the legend himself! Follow in Pelé’s footsteps in career mode and work your way from the backstreets of Brazil all the way up to become world champion.”
The basic gameplay is designed to cater to every football gamer’s primal instinct, to score goals without being troubled with defensive duties. The player is pitted against various challenges in front of goal with backdrops ranging from the Brazilian streets to audience-laden international stadiums of Rio, London and Rome.
The main challenge of the game is to score goals in different ways and from different positions beating the goalkeeper. The obstacles vary from beating defenders both static and moving, scoring at different regions of the goal to secure stars and hitting a required number of targets to clear each level. Each level either has a fixed number of kicks or a time constraint within which the challenge needs to be completed.
The initial levels are easy to clear with full points but the game kicks into life as the player advances levels. The challenges get tougher and from that point on, one really has to invoke the spirit of Pelé figuratively to think in vivid ways and execute the shots to finish the level.
The curved shot is not of much use in the starting levels, but is much needed and requires precision at higher levels allowing players to “Bend it like Beckham” and score eye-dropping goals. Goals are set to be scored from all possible positions and angles with the player having a vast array of shots such as headers, volleys, bicycle kicks, curls and outside of the boot blasters to choose from.
The career mode in the mobile version of the game has 150 levels as the player rises from the suburbs to world recognition. Further there are in-level powerups to freeze defenders, to bamboozle the ball’s way to goal, to blast through defenders on the path and to launch multiple balls at once that are pretty handy but they come at a price.
Further there is an assortment of custom accessories such as jerseys, boots, footballs and shoes that can be won based on better performances in-game as well as can be bought from the store. The mobile version also has an interesting one vs one feature where one can play a time-based scoring battle against a real opponent online, across various backdrops.
Further, there are a couple of modes that reward daily. The league mode involves scoring goals and accumulating points to receive rewards based on ranking against players across the world. The missions mode involves 15 levels similar to the career mode which yield a spinning wheel of rewards on completion every day.
This mode possesses moving target levels as well. Each of the levels in all the modes demands energy in the form of hearts with a replenishment every ten minutes similar to games of this type, which normally test the patience of players. An additional free-kick mode is available that offers a shot at goal with targets consisting of hearts, coins and cash on watching a short video. It is available to be taken every five minutes.
The graphics are crisp and fluid while the physics and accuracy of ball movement are sensitive and real including rebounds of the posts and keeper, giving it an authentic feel. The player has to work hard to master the game and even then the game ensures that consistency is necessary to score as would be required in real-time.
The Pelé images stir up a bit of nostalgia along with the background score and cheerful commentary that provide a captivating Samba experience.
The web version of the game created and released through Poki, currently, has only the career mode featuring the first 20 levels which should definitely entice users to try out the mobile version. The web game does not feature the remaining modes as of now.
However, the Netherlands-based company has assured that the extra features and levels will be added in the near future depending on user response.
Overall, Pelé: Soccer Legend is an adept and skilful game that is sure to draw even the ardent EA Sports’ FIFA and Konami’s Pro Evolution Soccer fans to have a go at it. Therein lies the success of the game which serves as a fitting tribute to one of the greatest players to ever grace the beautiful sport.