FIFA 21 vs PES 2021 graphics comparison: Which football game has better visuals?

FIFA and PES are the hallmarks of football games, but which one has the better graphics?

by Daryl Baxter
FIFA 21 screenshot

Football games have been a staple for decades now; even before video games, with table-top football being in many pubs and sports-centres.

Actua Soccer and Virtua Striker would be one of the first 3D football games to be on a console, but it was FIFA and Goal Storm that really helped lay down the gauntlet, or football to be the two games that would be beloved by football fans in gaming.

Fast-forward to 2020 and we’ve got a new FIFA game coming, alongside an ‘expansion pack’ to PES 2020, with the next full entry of PES coming next year instead.

With that, lets look into the graphics of FIFA and PES, and which one wins out.

Back of the FIFA Net

There’s been a football game released every year without fail, but it’s notable when a new console is released; it can show certain features of these that are yet to be fully utilised.

FIFA 2001 was a great example of this, where it was the first entry to be released both on PlayStation 1 and PlayStation 2. When you compare both versions, you can see in the graphics and the frame-rate that the PS2 version is easily superior.

But when it comes to PES and FIFA in their recent releases, they’ve tried to make sure that it looks as close to watching a match on BT Sport as possible.

Both games play very well and they reflect the Premier League, and others in the FA very accurately, but FIFA does win in the commercial-field, completely outselling PES each year.


READ MORE: Will FIFA 2021 have Juventus?

A Polygonal World Cup

With FIFA 21 announced for a 9th October release, it seems as though that the graphics will be a minor-improvement on the previous game, with more of a focus on career-mode and items such as gold packs.


PES 2021 isn’t coming as a full-game, but only as an expansion to PES 2020. Full development is underway for next year’s version which will instead be built on the ‘Unreal Engine’, which looks to completely blow away the graphics already. The below tweet only proves just how well PES looks.

PES scans in the players which results in much more accuracy and detail, and with ‘Unreal Engine’ now coming to the next game, it looks to blow away the graphics competition even more.

It will be interesting to see if FIFA take advantage of ray-tracing and 4K graphics for the PS5 and Series X versions in the fall, but right now, PES is certainly the Premier League Champion in football-graphics.

READ MORE: FIFA 2021 PS4 vs PS5: What will the differences be?

Daryl Baxter