After Ireland secured qualification for Euro 2016, some of you out there will have been eagerly looking forward to taking our nation to glory in the official video game of the tournament with the official groups, rather than having to replace someone who earned their place at the competition like we've had to do many times in the past.
Few people will forget our history road to glory on the official 2014 FIFA World Cup game, but this time out it's not quite going to be the same, not that it's really a bad thing.
EA Sports have lost the licence for the UEFA Euro tournaments to their arch rivals Pro Evolution Soccer, and the official UEFA Euro 2016 game will be available as downloadable content for PES 2016..
And it's going to be free.
Konami released a statement earlier today confirming that due to issues that have been experienced by their online players in recent months, they, and anyone who owns PES 2016, will be rewarded for their patience with a free download of Euro 2016:
Konami is pleased to announce that it will look to reward those who have continued to support the franchise by offering its forthcoming UEFA EURO 2016 content for free to everyone who owns PES 2016.
Erik Bladinieres, Football & Alliances Director for Konami, had the following to say on the decision to give what EA Sports had previously used as paid DLC or even a full standalone game for nothing:
It has been a difficult few months for the fans in how we have been delivering content in our recent Data Packs, with some items missing that our consumers expected. The PES Production team appreciate their fans’ support and want to reward their support and bring back confidence in the Data Pack releases. With this announcement, we hope we can regain their trust. The next Data Pack is scheduled for early December, including the Maracana stadium, more faces, new national team kits, club teams and the player roster which was confirmed on October 19th. We strive to keep delivering quality content to our fans, for free. The content of the UEFA EURO 2016 content has yet to be defined, but all content delivered by Data Pack featuring EURO for next year's prestigious tournament will be free to all existing users.
So if you want to play the official Euro 2016 game, you'll need to own PES 2016.
This will no doubt be met with groans for many gamers who have yet to go back to PES after it lost it's title as the dominant football gaming for being absolutely crap between PES 2008 and PES 2014, but we must stress that the game has come on leaps and bounds in the last two years, especially playing against the CPU.
But it's a big change for the official tournament games, and while an official release date it yet to be announced, it will be interesting to see how if affects Konami's sales.
Also interesting to see will be whether or not FIFA 16 acknowledges the tournament in any fashion at all.
via Konami Press Release.