Browse all

Are the fake eFootball (Konami) logos for the Serie A better than the real ones?

Fake aesthetics and the PES licensing war can become an asset for entry into the metaverse

Are the fake eFootball (Konami) logos for the Serie A better than the real ones? Fake aesthetics and the PES licensing war can become an asset for entry into the metaverse
Milan - Milano RN
Empoli - Empoli A
Sampdoria - Liguria B
Spezia - La Spezia B
Udinese - Udine BN
Sassuolo - Sassuolo NV
Verona - Verona GB
Venezia - Venezia ANV

Goal Storm, Iss Pro, Winning Eleven, PES and eFootball. Konami's football video game has taken on different names over the years, creating a long-distance challenge with FIFA by dividing fans and - above all - official league and club licences. In the common imagination FIFA has always been the more mainstream game, with a wider spread, official licences and more accessible gameplay. PES - which since last year has been renamed eFootball in its Fortnite-style free-to-play version - has instead positioned itself as a hipster alternative on the market, managing between 2006 and 2012 to eat into FIFA's market share. Part of the appeal of PES was its somewhat cheap aesthetic, bordering on the fake, whose apotheosis was the fake names and logos of teams whose commercial rights they did not own: in PES 2002 you could play Aragon (Manchester United) against Europort (Liverpool) played at the Red Cauldron (Anfield), Lombardy (Milan) against AS Abruzzi (Rome) in the prestigious Longobardi Colosseum (San Siro) to name but a few examples. Another impossible-to-forget tidbit are the names of the various football legends: NIRASAKI (Hidetoshi Nakata) Malgani (Maradona), Lon Barron (Roberto Baggio).

From a legal point of view, it was a genius idea that allowed Konami to carve out its own slice of the market and slowly buy up the licences, without giving up that cheap aesthetic that became a cult thanks to the career team and the great attacking duo Minanda-Castolo. Today the licensing market seems to be heading towards its end, FIFA seems to have officially withdrawn the official licence from EA Sports, which will be forced to change the name of the game. eFootball 2022 promised a revolution in the metaverse of football gaming, offering the first free-to-play game (i.e. free and with an internal economy) and above all cross-platform (i.e. you can play on mobile vs. Playstation). Promises so far not kept, and the news more than the gameplay have been the glaring game bugs and approximate graphics. 

Konami has only managed to buy the official licences for Juventus, Atalanta, Roma, Lazio and Napoli for eFootball, so this year too there has been a moment when Konami's developers and creatives have had to sit down around a table (or more likely in a call) to find alternative names and logos for 15 out of 20 teams in the top Italian league. The main problems concern Inter and Milan, for which Konami has dusted off the old territorial principle, renaming Inter and Milan respectively Lombardia NA and Milano RN. If, however, the Konami team has been less imaginative on the names than in previous Pes games, the work on the logos is interesting: between retro revisitations, alternative palettes and baroque designs, the fake logos of the teams are complete disasters or interesting ideas for rebranding. In a world like football gaming where jerseys have come to be influenced by amateur kit makers, is it possible to imagine the same with the introduction of tokens? At a time when the commercial war between EA Sports and Konami seems almost won by the former, this kind of content could be eFootball's salvation in the long run.

Milan - Milano RN
Empoli - Empoli A
Sampdoria - Liguria B
Spezia - La Spezia B
Udinese - Udine BN
Sassuolo - Sassuolo NV
Verona - Verona GB
Venezia - Venezia ANV