This game is the result of evolution of a series that has reached a certain level, and then didnt seem to be able to find anywhere to go from there, so they went back.
The most lauded portion of this new game is the new Teamvision artificial intelligence. It is supposed to bring multiple play modes to the intelligence of your competition, as well as improving the teamwork of your opponents. They do seem to perform better this year when you change up your play style than they did before, but some of that has to do with the fact that defenders are so powerful in this game. Other than that, the gameplay is similar to earlier versions in that it is easy to maneuver your character and move the ball around. One of the changes that takes away from the experience this year is the implementation of goalkeepers fumbling the ball on a regular basis, when they are specifically trained to do the exact opposite of that.
One of the things that gamers were so upset about last year was the weakness of the online portion of the game. Unfortunately, that is another arena that this game has not moved forward in. The games are still laggy, there are only two playable modes online, and there isnt anything in the way of perks or features for players, despite this franchise having a history in making simulation games in this sport and others.
If the creators of the game werent going to improve the gameplay or the online setup for this years release, do you really think that they are going to improve the graphical display? If you thought yes, you were wrong. There is a distinct lack of licensed teams available, though replacement teams allow players to play that team, if they really want to. The menu system doesnt add to the game either, and in fact makes it even more difficult to play. Other than those issues, there just isnt a lot of detail to the arenas in the game, although the player models look pretty good.
This game is the result of evolution of a series that has reached a certain level, and then didnt seem to be able to find anywhere to go from there, so they went back. Hopefully, the next iteration will see them trying to fix the problems that this game does have, even if the designers dont want to see them. The gamers see them, and with our passing the word around to other gamers in the know, soon everyone will know just what Pro Evolution Soccer 2008 is bringing to the table, or rather, what it isnt.