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How to play ML with SmokePatch21 without Errors

smokepatch is known to focus on offline modes only, as we play master league almost exclusively on a daily basis for many years now, never having any crashes or issues in all of the smokepatch current and previous versions, tens of thousands of our users are playing ML without any problems, it is impossible to have a problem without us knowing about it immediately, we intensively test the patch to ensure that all our users can play error-free master league.

we try the best we can to make the installation of smokepatch as easy as possible, a simple installer to install or upgrade the patch, and a small edit file to copy in the game save folder, nothing else is required.

all the information that users will need to know is detailed in the patch description, users must read the patch description before using it, the information is there so users can avoid problems.

we are well aware of other mods having serious issues with the master league mode, this does not affect smokepatch as the master league is the mode we like most in PES.

here is what can go wrong following our investigations from the emails we tried to help people we gathered what can go wrong in ML or BAL modes:


- Wrong Installation

installing smokepatch is simple, we try our best so the installation process would be easy for everybody, a simple installer to run and one file to copy, yet doing this wrong can cause problems, and although the instructions are clear some users do not follow.

in the installer there are usually two options to select from, one is for the original game and one for the copy game, original game means a full legal game bought and paid for, although both versions might look alike, there are fundamental differences and they are considered to be two different games, installing the wrong version is like installing SP20 on PES21, it will not work, users must select the correct game they have in the installer.

the same thing with the edit file (the file to copy in the save folder), two versions come in the installer (in older games this file is installed automatically), in SP19 and newer this file must be copied manually in the correct place, in SP21 it is important to copy the correct corresponding edit file, using the wrong edit file will cause ML problems. always use the edit file that comes with the latest SP version installed.

A wrong installation can cause one or more of the following problems:
- crash mid-season
- crash after or before the cup game
- crash at the end of the season
- no league schedule in the second season
- random crash on different occasions

to fix any of these problems a reinstall of the game and patch will fix it, although in this case a new master league is required as the older one will still carry the problem in it and cannot be fixed.

see the detailed install instructions for the correct install procedure.


- Adding External Mods (sider or cpk)

smokepatch has its own features that are detailed in the patch description, other optional add-ons can be added from the SP addons menu (real faces or stadiums, etc...), all SP addons are made for smokepatch and tested for maximum compatibility.

there are also thousands of mods over the web, some of them can work with SP without any problems, others can cause small bugs or serious issues, we simply cannot know that as we only know the things we make, we do not test the thousand of things made by others, we only test our work.

adding mods from others is at user risk, we do not recommend that for a simple reason that when users get problems from the mods they report to SP, users can add whatever they want to their game, but we cannot help or fix any issue caused by adding things from others.

problems from external mods can be minor like having the wrong player's skin color or wrong emblem, but can also be serious like no second season or random crashes in the game.

please do not report problems until the game is tested with smokepatch and SP addons only, to be sure the problem is from the patch.


- Modifying the dpfilelist

the dpfilelist is a file that has the structure of the patch cpk files, this file is installed with the patch and should not be changed, edited, or generated, it has its own version and structure, and changing anything in this file can cause minor or serious bugs, there is absolutely no need to touch this file for any reason, to add cpk files to smokepatch we have a specially made extra cpk files that can be used to add external cpk files of compatible mods.

to recover the original SP dpfilelist users can use the SP switcher that comes with the patch (located in the download folder of the game), reinstalling the patch will also recover all files including this file.

read more about dpfilelist
read about how to use the extra cpk files


- Using External Editors

we do not use any editors or tools to create anything in smokepatch, we use hexadecimal software and excel for database creation, and photoshop/after effect/3d max to create graphics.

users can edit their game using the game edit mode, this is the only safe way to edit the database, most of the users who edited the DB with external editors came back with serious issues that we cannot resolve, we do not know what can go wrong in editors or how they work as we do not use them, but it can cause master league problems like not having a second season or cup crash.

using the game edit mode is the best way to make edits, users can export any edits and import them when a new patch version is available, without any issues or risk.

read about how to export/import edits into a new SP version.


- Old Master League

it is a common mistake to use a master league started with a previous generation of SP, although we specifically mention this in the patch description,

every year we create a new season patch that defers from the previous version especially the teams and players present in the patch, for example, if a master league is started with SPv3, it cannot continue using SPv4 and a new career is required, that is because some teams and players are not present in the newer patch, using an old ML or BAL will show these teams as empty (no flag or kits), and will show all players that do not exist as (players) without the actual name.

a new master league is required every new season patch, around November every year a new career will be needed, starting a master league with v4 can continue with all v4 versions, v3 can continue with all v3 versions, and so on.

On rare occasions, the patch would need a new career mid-season, like in pes19 early SP version when one of Konami's updates required it, and in PES20 when we hit the players maximum number limit and we needed to clear up some space in the database, be sure to read the description of any new version before using it to know such requirements.

also, if a user added an incompatible mod and started master league, then it causes a problem, a new ML will be needed as fixing the problem will not fix the master league file itself, it already has the bug in the file and is considered as corrupted.


- DLC files

smokepatch is a standalone mod, which means it does not require any tools or additional files to work, however, the installer assumes that the game is installed and working as it is intended to be, the original game defers from the copy game version in this regard.

- the working original game will have all DLC files already downloaded by steam and working properly before installing the patch, the patch installer will use these files and they are already part of the patch, however, even without the DLC files present, the patch should work without any problem (except faces that are included in the face pack addon)

- the copy game is based on a previous game version, this means that the usable DLC files are fewer, the installer will overwrite the unneeded files with empty files to maintain copy game compatibility, manually downloading and copying the DLC files can cause many unpredicted problems and there is no need to do so.



we share our patch exactly as we play it, we assume our fans would use it as we do, we try our best so all our fans would enjoy PES as much as we do, but we cannot ensure others mods can work or not, we can only focus on what we create.

be safe, have fun,