At this year’s E3, I interviewed Konami’s Integrated Marketing Manager, Andre Bronzoni; a man whose affection for the game of football/soccer is everlasting and timeless. Andre was full of conviction and thrilled for this year’s Pro Evolution Soccer 2016! He believes AI will be the game changer for this year’s edition of the storied franchise. One that promises to advance the series to new heights.
Interview with Andre Bronzoni, Konami’s Integrated Marketing Manager on Pro Evolution Soccer 2016
GameSided: Does Konami have a friendly game of one-upmanship with EA’s FIFA series or do you feel they’re both different experiences?
Andre: We have a friendly competition with them, they’re really good. They’ve made good games. We have a unique game and we think our game is different than them of course. I think we focus a little bit more on the graphics. We love to have them as a competitor. I don’t say that one is better than the other, I just think they’re two different games.
GS: When you first start off on the drawing board, what are the pre-planning stages for Pro Evolution Soccer?
Andre: We always listen to our fans first. That’s the first thing that we do. We listen to our fans to see if they want to recommend something new, or bring something back from the past. It’s our 20th anniversary and we’ve changed a lot during those 20 years. We ask the fans what do they want to see. What do you want to see, just tell us. We’ll do our best to put it in the game.
GS: Do you go by a focus group, or scour message boards?
Andre: We go by survey, it works best for us.
GS: Obviously graphics, universally, have all improved across the board; all video games today look spectacular. Do you feel a cinematic narrative in sports games have a future? Almost like a MyPlayer where you’re making a journey onto a team?
Andre: It’s a good question. In my opinion, I think, in the future, yes. It will take some time for the developments.
GS: Or do you feel that the core fan base would probably rather sit back on the couch and have a fun 1 on 1 match?
Andre: Our core fans love to do that! They love to play against each other, mingle and compete.
GS: How do you feel the audio has progressed in this year’s edition?
Andre: We always try to improve, every year we try to bring new commentary and new lines. We have commentary from Argentina, Chile, Mexico, UK, Germany and more. We’re always trying to improve and make Pro Evolution Soccer universal. We work hard for it.
GS: What do you feel is the biggest addition to this year’s Pro Evolution Soccer? The one that makes it feel most next-gen.
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Andre: The best feature that we are showing right now in my opinion, is AI. The advanced AI is a game changer for us here at Konami. For me, the feature I like the most is the Dynamic Weather. Not because it can start raining randomly during the game, but because it’s by region. For example, if you play with a club in the UK it rains a bit more. The probability of rain is really high, but if you choose a club in Argentina there’s obviously not going to be the same amount of rain as the UK.
GS: Did you start off a soccer fan as a kid, is this a dream for you? I can tell you’re very passionate about it.
Andre: Yeah, I loved soccer as a kid. I started playing this game when I was 12. I feel really good speaking about this game, I love it!
GS: Are you the best player from your friends?
Andre: I try, but no. (Laughs). I have a lot of friends that play really well. Believe me.
A New Age for the Game of Soccer/Football: Pro Evolution Soccer 2016
Follow updates on Pro Evolution Soccer 2016 on their official Twitter page at: @officialpes
Follow Konami’s Integrated Marketing Manager Andre Bronzoni on Twitter at: @AndreBronzoni
Follow me on Twitter: @nirregev