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Thread: Is Football Manager right for me?

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    Question Is Football Manager right for me?

    Good afternoon all,

    I'm new here and I'm looking for the best football management sim I can. FM2010 has caught my interest with its sheer depth and seeing as I've never played an FM game before, I wanted to know a little more about what I can expect. I've always played Fifa Manager in the past because it was fun and daft, this year I tried out Champ Manager and have come away with mixed feelings. I've been reading the blogs on The Mirror's site with interest, but I wanted to also know what YOU, the fans of FM thought.

    My ideal management sim would incorporate such things as:

    - extremely deep tactics wherein you can set each individual player to do specific, and if possible, multiple jobs on the pitch. I'd also like to be able to tell players things like what area of the pitch they must stick to etc.
    - I would like a training system where you can really go hands on and develop a player into the person you want them to be - Champ Man has made a decent effort at this.
    - a 3D match engine that will accurately reflect what I have told my team to do using a realistic and decent AI - my major gripe with Champ Man is that it isn't doing this at the mo.
    - a transfer system which is as lifelike as possible.

    How many of these boxes have past FMs ticked, and from what you've gathered from your personal research, do you reckon FM10 has a good chance of achieving this?

    Any genuine feedback on FM (especially depth of tactics), would be greatly appreciated.

    Cheers.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Commenting on the Football Manager series as a whole - three of the four things you want FM does better than any other game. That is not to say it is perfect, but it is far more satisfying than CM or FIFA.

    The training is the one area from your list that lets it down, as it is functional rather than fun.

    What really makes FM stand out is the little touches that add to the immersion. In that respect it wipes the floor with the opposition.

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    Cool Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    It isn't perfect in regards to the questions and issues you have posted, but it is generally very very good, and furthermore, most importantly it is FAR better than the other two management sims you mentioned. However one thing I would say is that FM demands a huge commitment time-wise to get anywhere due to it's depth, something which the other two don't need quite so much, so if you're someone with a busy schedule for whatever reason I'd think twice. Luckily for me I'm a student so time is something I have an abundance of.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Best advice is to read through all the blogs which have been posted regarding the new version - I'd say it will tick most of your boxes - but only you can decide that.

    The demo is due out in a about three weeks - that will be the ideal chance for you to make a desicion.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    FM is the greatest management game ever, I have been playing them for years and will continue to do so for years to come, it will be 30 quid well spent.

    Kiss goodbye to you social life

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    If you are new to the series maybe give one of the older FM demo's a try, I'm sure you can still find them if you google them, to dive straight in a play FM can be a little daunting at first, but with some help from some of the folk on these forums you can be up and running in no time and being reasonably successful. There are plenty of different tactical theorems out there, in particular wwfans which is/was always very helpful. If you want to be ready for FM10 then I'd suggest downloading the FM09 demo along with the demo update and make a decision yourself, allternatively you could wait for the FM10 demo which is likely to be about a month away, understandably there will be a degree of biasedness towards FM on these boards as it is the developers own website, my opinion for what it is worth is that I have played the series since the beginning and it has got better in time, don't get me wrong the game does have some flaws but then it is still better than any alternatives that are out there.
    Last edited by feedthegoat; 21-09-2009 at 12:32. Reason: Bad grammar!

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by feedthegoat View Post
    If you are new to the series maybe give one of the older FM demo's a try, I'm sure you can still find them if you google them
    I'll second that. You should be able to get a full version of FM09 or FM08 very cheaply, try eBay, or other online retailers, or your local game shop.

    e.g.

    FM08 for £4.97 at play.com

    FM09 for £12.99 at play.com

    Download FM09 demo free
    Last edited by robzilla; 21-09-2009 at 12:46. Reason: linkage

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Thanks for your views so far. If I get the chance I'll give the FM09 demo a go. In the meantime, I will continue reading blogs, previews, hands-ons, etc. I'll defo download the FM10 demo though. If anyone else has a view on FM and how it relates to the specifics I listed earlier, please feel free to continue posting.

    Cheers.

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    Thumbs up Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by antg1985 View Post
    FM is the greatest management game ever, I have been playing them for years and will continue to do so for years to come, it will be 30 quid well spent.

    Kiss goodbye to you social life
    I definitely agree with you here!!

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    I suggest Ultimate Soccer Manager 98-99

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Ritchie View Post
    I suggest Ultimate Soccer Manager 98-99
    What a game! Premier Manager 2 was also awesome.

    I have to say I was extremely disappointed (if not unsurprised) by the new CM. The scouting is awful and scout reports consist of very little. No detail at all. If you want to be able to view heaps of stats for each and every game, but not have any real insight into transfers, then probably go with CM. They also have a deeper league structure than the current FM. Not sure if FM 2010 will go down as far as the Unibond Premier. Be great if it does

    I am eagerly waiting for FM 2010 and am quite happy paid only £2.51 for CM. Can't see me playing it much.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by mr8kc View Post
    Not sure if FM 2010 will go down as far as the Unibond Premier.
    The Unibond Premier and many other leagues can be added using the new competitions editor.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by playmaker View Post
    Commenting on the Football Manager series as a whole - three of the four things you want FM does better than any other game. That is not to say it is perfect, but it is far more satisfying than CM or FIFA.

    The training is the one area from your list that lets it down, as it is functional rather than fun.

    What really makes FM stand out is the little touches that add to the immersion. In that respect it wipes the floor with the opposition.

    Training wouldn't have been one of the ones I flagged up there as it's possible to properly shape a player's development using the training in FM09 if you decide to dedicate the time to it.

    My problem would have been transfers - the FM09 transfer market is (on average) an inflated version of the real transfer market. Still miles ahead of its rivals though.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Once again, thank you for your posts. Can anyone give me a better insight into just how deep you can go with your tactics? e.g. how thoroughly you can research and plan to deal with an opposition team, how many instructions you can give players etc.

    Cheers once more!

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by feedthegoat View Post
    The Unibond Premier and many other leagues can be added using the new competitions editor.
    You can indeed. But as a Colwyn Bay fan (Unibond First Division South) fan, I feel this important level of English football should have been painstakingly worked on by SI

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hootoo22 View Post
    Once again, thank you for your posts. Can anyone give me a better insight into just how deep you can go with your tactics? e.g. how thoroughly you can research and plan to deal with an opposition team, how many instructions you can give players etc.

    Cheers once more!
    There are quite a few different variables you can give a player, unfortunately they come as a slider and this a subject of some debate on these forums, as it can be a case of getting the slider just in the right place for a player to play to his potential, this can be a little tedious. As for research on other teams tactics, providing you have a scout set to research the oppoisition before you play them, then you will be given a detailed report of how they play what tactics they use, their current form, and any dangermen, however I just tend to stick to my own tactic and let them worry about me!

    EDIT:-
    You can indeed. But as a Colwyn Bay fan (Unibond First Division South) fan, I feel this important level of English football should have been painstakingly worked on by SI

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    Completely agree tbh.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by feedthegoat View Post

    EDIT:-

    Completely agree tbh.
    Fellow non-leaguer?

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    The only thing stopping SI imo is the difficulty of getting reliable data for every team and player down at that level.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hootoo22 View Post
    Once again, thank you for your posts. Can anyone give me a better insight into just how deep you can go with your tactics? e.g. how thoroughly you can research and plan to deal with an opposition team, how many instructions you can give players etc.

    Cheers once more!
    I suggest having a look in the tactics and training forum (on this website) as some of the tactical discussions are quite intense.

    http://community.sigames.com/forumdisplay.php?f=18

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by mr8kc View Post
    Fellow non-leaguer?
    Follow Chelmsford City, luckily they are now in the game, but I do follow the Ryman League closely as there are a lot of local sides in the Premier (Billericay, Canvey, Aveley)

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    We've started very well this season. All the best for Chelmsford feedthegoat. 9th isn't too bad a start.

    (Correction - we're in the North of course... I have been playing as Hitchin Town in BSS so have it stuck in my head )

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by mr8kc View Post
    We've started very well this season. All the best for Chelmsford feedthegoat. 9th isn't too bad a start.

    (Correction - we're in the North of course... I have been playing as Hitchin Town in BSS so have it stuck in my head )
    Had a terrible start in all honesty, City started the season as favourites, but are struggling against teams they should really be beating. Had a fantastic result against Woking and then lose against Eastleigh, not good enough, whole squad needs shaking up IMO. I'm not really an avid fan, but my dad is/was, he's the one who really got me into following them from a little lad. Anyway this isn't the place to be talking about NL football, so I'll stop .

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Well, FM will suck out your life as you won't be able to get away from it

    On a more serious note:
    - tactics in FM should be exactly what you want (but for the stick to this area part)
    - training will disappoint you. It's very generic in FM with a few nice touches here and there
    - the match engine should make you very happy. Not super-prettty but not too shabby either and in any way extremely accurate
    - transfers are okay. Realistic with some room left for improvement


    hth

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    People always seem to underestimate exactly what can be achieved by paying attention to training.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ackter View Post
    People always seem to underestimate exactly what can be achieved by paying attention to training.
    I am definitely one of those people. I also under-use the tactics screen and tend to just go in blind. I think a bit more time spent tweaking would do wonders.

    I can see it on my report card now.... "Must do better".

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ackter View Post
    People always seem to underestimate exactly what can be achieved by paying attention to training.
    apparently

    If you dedicate time to ityou can indeed achieve something but you cannot define training routines in detail like in other games which cover this in a way which I assume the OP to regard as more satisfying.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by feedthegoat View Post
    Follow Chelmsford City, luckily they are now in the game, but I do follow the Ryman League closely as there are a lot of local sides in the Premier (Billericay, Canvey, Aveley)
    I'm a Salford City fan (we're currently rock bottom of the Unibond Div 1 North, so eighth tier), so I'm very excited about FM2010. Potentially being able to manage the Ammies up to their rightful place as the best club in the city is a great prospect! It shouldn't be too difficult; we do have our own Giggs... Rhodri Giggs, that is!

    Obviously, it will take some time for people to put together the Unibond League in the editor, so I actually plan on starting off with Chelmsford after finding myself there on FM09 and having a very enjoyable experience. We managed promotion from the BSS via the playoffs and won the FA Trophy in my first full season in an epic 3-2 final against Stevenage. The winning goal was scored using the corner bug, but I didn't know about it at the time so I'm not going to count it as cheating!

    I have very fond memories of Ricky Holmes - easily our star player, with a consistent mentality and incredible dribbling and pace, both rarities at that level. My entire tactic revolved around players giving him the ball on the right, either to feet or over the top; he'd then shred their left back, get right by the goalline and cross it in for a far post tap-in. It was an incredibly simple style of play, and he wasn't intelligent enough to do much else but he gave me at least fifteen assists a season.

    How are the new players looking, especially Antonio Murray? If Chelmsford started the season as favourites, hopefully that will make the start of my job easier when I rejoin them next month!
    Last edited by Peregrine; 21-09-2009 at 14:45.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Peregrine View Post
    I'm a Salford City fan (we're currently rock bottom of the Unibond Div 1 North, so eighth tier), so I'm very excited about FM2010. Potentially being able to manage the Ammies up to their rightful place as the best club in the city is a great prospect! It shouldn't be too difficult; we do have our own Giggs... Rhodri Giggs, that is!

    Obviously, it will take some time for people to put together the Unibond League in the editor, so I actually plan on starting off with Chelmsford after finding myself there on FM09 and having a very enjoyable experience. We managed promotion from the BSS via the playoffs and won the FA Trophy in my first full season in an epic 3-2 final against Stevenage. The winning goal was scored using the corner bug, but I didn't know about it at the time so I'm not going to count it as cheating...

    I have very fond memories of Ricky Holmes - easily our star player, with a consistent mentality and incredible dribbling and pace, both rarities at that level. My entire tactic revolved around players giving him the ball on the right, either to feet or over the top; he'd then shred their left back, get right by the goalline and cross it in for a far post tap-in. It was an incredibly simple style of play, and he wasn't intelligent enough to do much else but he gave me at least fifteen assists a season.

    How are the new players looking, especially Antonio Murray? I'm hoping I won't need to buy two new strikers again.
    I don't think Murray has featured much this year (can't really say as I haven't been to see them this season), but do look out for Danny Hockton, Rob Edmans and yep they still have Ricky Holmes, as well as ex-Daggers players Dave Rainford and Anthony Cook they have also signed ex-Chester and Watford midfielder Jamie Hand and ex-Stevenage and Grays midfielder John Martin, they have also re-signed Micky Haswell and added a new goalkeeper in the shape of Craig Holloway, probably explains why City haven't started so well, the team have yet to gel properly.

    Up the City Wheel 'em in!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peregrine View Post
    I'm a Salford City fan (we're currently rock bottom of the Unibond Div 1 North, so eighth tier)
    We're playing you very soon. Playing 3 games in six days starting the 23rd of this month. Hopefully we can keep the run going!

    Being able to play as Colwyn Bay has been a dream for a while. I was always envious when a league team drew them in the FA Cup (providing they made it through qualifying)

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    Quote Originally Posted by jayahr View Post
    apparently

    If you dedicate time to ityou can indeed achieve something but you cannot define training routines in detail like in other games which cover this in a way which I assume the OP to regard as more satisfying.

    No, you can't define training regimes - but you can define a player's development.

    Want your player to be more defensive? Training is the place to do it.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Welcome to the SI Forums, Hootoo.

    I will attempt to address some of your points:


    Quote Originally Posted by Hootoo22 View Post
    I'm new here and I'm looking for the best football management sim I can.
    Then look no further; as I'm happy to say that your search is over.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hootoo22 View Post
    FM2010 has caught my interest with its sheer depth and seeing as I've never played an FM game before, I wanted to know a little more about what I can expect.
    Well, if depth is your main requirement, then the FM series should be the answer to your prayers. The 'sheer depth' of Football Manager is without equal. Graphically, the other two games you mentioned 'look' better in my opinion, you could say they are more 'visually appealing', yet ultimately those games lack the coveted 'immersion factor' that FM has become renowned for (and we have a very active "skinning" community, who work to provide appealing 'face-lifts' for the visual side of the game). In my opinion, FM09 seemed to be not quite as immersive as some of the previous versions of the game. I'm not entirely sure why I found this to be the case, but my suspicion is that SI tried to do too much, too soon, in the many additional features they included in FM09. The good news (for those of us that feel this way) is that FM2010, we are promised, will be (still with some great new features as you'll have seen from the blogs) mainly a good "polish" of FM2009. I am extremely hopeful that this will bring me a return to the immersion that I love about this game.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hootoo22 View Post
    My ideal management sim would incorporate such things as:
    Quote Originally Posted by Hootoo22 View Post
    - extremely deep tactics wherein you can set each individual player to do specific, and if possible, multiple jobs on the pitch. I'd also like to be able to tell players things like what area of the pitch they must stick to etc.
    You will certainly be more than satisfied with FM in this regard. If in depth tactical micro-management is your thing, then you'll likely discover Football Manager will provide you with many tactical multiple-orgasmic experiences.

    The level of tactical depth is without equal, so much so, that many often find it to be too complex at times. I do not personally share that view, I find the tactical system to be superb, but as with most things, it's all about opinions, and I'm just offering you mine.

    One thing though, that FM2010 will bring, is the new 'Tactics Wizard', and for those who find setting up a winning tactic to be a real struggle, the new Wizard appears to be a 'dream come true'. The same level of depth, but a system in place to help you make more sense of how the sliders function (or even just do it for you and save you the work). The Wizard brings a new graphical feel to what is in essence a 'bunch of sliders' that let you dictate how your tactics and team are set up.

    The good news is that for those of us who like the sliders, you can still use them as well. I intend to make use of both; setting up my initial formation etc with the Wizard, and fine tuning with the sliders to perfect my system the way I desire it to be.


    Quote Originally Posted by Hootoo22 View Post
    - I would like a training system where you can really go hands on and develop a player into the person you want them to be - Champ Man has made a decent effort at this.
    This one is a subject of much debate. Again, it comes down to your personal opinion. The training system is in place to do what you want, to a certain point. To quote Ackter:

    Quote Originally Posted by Ackter View Post
    People always seem to underestimate exactly what can be achieved by paying attention to training.
    I agree; and here's why:

    On first glance, the training system does appear quite restrictive. In some respects, that is true, but when you 'take the hood off' and get into the mechanics, there is more to it than meets the eye. I shall endeavor to explain.

    The "General" Training category provides a standard routine, that can be customized to some degree by 'tweaking' the sliders of the various categories. I get the impression that many players do not delve beyond this. If you leave all players on this same training routine, you are very limited in what you can achieve, in specifically defining a player's individual improvement and stat maintenance.

    However, you have the ability to create your own 'New Schedules'. I thoroughly recommend taking the time to do so. For me, the next step up the 'depth-ometer' would be to create different schedules for each position. Setting up a schedule for Goalkeepers, Full Backs, Defenders, Midfielders, Wingers and Forwards can be very rewarding, as it allows you to focus on training the main attributes for these positions, rather than grouping them all in on the same "General" schedule. For instance, you can focus your training for each group, to the extent that you want them to work upon Strength, Aerobic, Defending, Ball Control, Attacking, Shooting, and Set Pieces etc.

    Personally, I like to take it a step further. If you have the time (and desire to do so), you can spend some serious time devoted to devising individual personal training schedules for each player. This allows you to further define and target even smaller sets of attributes, for each specific player, in relation to what you want him to improve upon most.

    The only drawback which cannot be changed due to the programming, is that certain attributes cannot be split up and targeted individually. This for me, is frustratingly limiting, if ultimate control of training is what we're after. For example, the "Set Pieces" routine will train a player in the areas of Crossing, Corners, Free Kicks, Penalties and Long Throws. In an ideal world, I should be able to split these up even further, and tailor my training in each skill as required. Though as it currently stands, if I set a winger to train intensively on set pieces to hone his crossing ability, he'll be spending equal amounts of time working upon his free kicks, corners etc as well.

    So, it's not a perfect system, but in my view, it is still a pretty decent one, if you're willing to invest the time into honing it to your requirements, within the framework given to you by SI.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hootoo22 View Post
    - a 3D match engine that will accurately reflect what I have told my team to do using a realistic and decent AI - my major gripe with Champ Man is that it isn't doing this at the mo.
    I cannot comment on 3D, as my machine does not currently have the capabilities to run it, so I'm still playing in 2D mode. But the match engine itself, whilst not 'perfect', seems to be improving with each incarnation. I am hopeful that FM2010 will be even better, from what I've read in the blogs so far.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hootoo22 View Post
    - a transfer system which is as lifelike as possible.
    How many of these boxes have past FMs ticked, and from what you've gathered from your personal research, do you reckon FM10 has a good chance of achieving this?
    The transfer system, for me, has been one of the lesser areas of the game. I find transfers to be initially realistic, but over a long term game, many players of FM find that the AI does not spend wisely enough in investing in young talent, thus rendering them stuck with 35+ year old aging 'has beens' as the mainstay of their squads, whilst you snap up all the good young players. Hence the longer you play, the less challenging the game can become.
    Don't get me wrong, I still feel it to be good system (short term), but there is certainly room for improvement. Hopefully SI will deliver that improvement in FM2010. I remain hopeful that they will.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hootoo22 View Post
    Any genuine feedback on FM (especially depth of tactics), would be greatly appreciated.

    Cheers.
    You are welcome. Hopefully I have been able to be of some assistance.

    Overall, you cannot go wrong with Football Manager. Sure, it has it's faults, like all games do, but if you're holding it up against other Management Sims, there is simply no comparison. If FIFA and CM were rivers.....
    FM would be a vast Ocean.

    I hope you decide to try FM2010 for yourself, and that you find much enjoyment in your new game.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    there is no game in the world what has no bad things about it, it really depends how the good things of the game can over come and make people like the game even tho the bad things are there and how the makers can fix and continue making more good things

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    To Bennico: thank you for taking the time to write such a thorough response, it has helped me a lot and answered a number of questions I had. The ability you have with tactics in FM sounds very impressive, and the training (I agree with you about the individual stat improvement idea) sounds immersive enough; I think I'll be one of those people who tries to concentrate individual training programmes for each player! It would be genuinely rewarding to see your player become, to at least a certain degree, the kind of player you personally want.

    Thank you to everyone else posting too!

  34. #34
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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Bennico: Very good post and is spot on with my opinion too.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hootoo22 View Post
    To Bennico: thank you for taking the time to write such a thorough response, it has helped me a lot and answered a number of questions I had. The ability you have with tactics in FM sounds very impressive, and the training (I agree with you about the individual stat improvement idea) sounds immersive enough; I think I'll be one of those people who tries to concentrate individual training programmes for each player! It would be genuinely rewarding to see your player become, to at least a certain degree, the kind of player you personally want.

    Thank you to everyone else posting too!
    Prepare yourself to kiss your life goodbye!

    In preparation for FM2010, I'd spend some time on the tactical forum to get ideas about how the match engine works. FM2010 will apparently see a revamped tactic builder so I'm guessing it will make things more obvious than the contreversial slider system which has been in use for the last few years.

    Good luck mate! Best thing you can do imo is just start a game with FM2010 and stick with it and learn as you go along.

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    Default Re: Is Football Manager right for me?

    I agree with this inividual training area for individual attribute improvement, but we need even :
    - small groups for specific training ( each day or week for ex : physics, attack/defense, control, set-pieces etc... )
    - full group for match training.

    I think we just need to improve the current system which seems realistic but complete it.

    Thanks !

    With 3 types of trainig, you cover what the manager expects in reality ( individual, specific and full training )


    Quote Originally Posted by Bennico View Post
    Welcome to the SI Forums, Hootoo.

    I will attempt to address some of your points:




    Then look no further; as I'm happy to say that your search is over.



    Well, if depth is your main requirement, then the FM series should be the answer to your prayers. The 'sheer depth' of Football Manager is without equal. Graphically, the other two games you mentioned 'look' better in my opinion, you could say they are more 'visually appealing', yet ultimately those games lack the coveted 'immersion factor' that FM has become renowned for (and we have a very active "skinning" community, who work to provide appealing 'face-lifts' for the visual side of the game). In my opinion, FM09 seemed to be not quite as immersive as some of the previous versions of the game. I'm not entirely sure why I found this to be the case, but my suspicion is that SI tried to do too much, too soon, in the many additional features they included in FM09. The good news (for those of us that feel this way) is that FM2010, we are promised, will be (still with some great new features as you'll have seen from the blogs) mainly a good "polish" of FM2009. I am extremely hopeful that this will bring me a return to the immersion that I love about this game.





    You will certainly be more than satisfied with FM in this regard. If in depth tactical micro-management is your thing, then you'll likely discover Football Manager will provide you with many tactical multiple-orgasmic experiences.

    The level of tactical depth is without equal, so much so, that many often find it to be too complex at times. I do not personally share that view, I find the tactical system to be superb, but as with most things, it's all about opinions, and I'm just offering you mine.

    One thing though, that FM2010 will bring, is the new 'Tactics Wizard', and for those who find setting up a winning tactic to be a real struggle, the new Wizard appears to be a 'dream come true'. The same level of depth, but a system in place to help you make more sense of how the sliders function (or even just do it for you and save you the work). The Wizard brings a new graphical feel to what is in essence a 'bunch of sliders' that let you dictate how your tactics and team are set up.

    The good news is that for those of us who like the sliders, you can still use them as well. I intend to make use of both; setting up my initial formation etc with the Wizard, and fine tuning with the sliders to perfect my system the way I desire it to be.




    This one is a subject of much debate. Again, it comes down to your personal opinion. The training system is in place to do what you want, to a certain point. To quote Ackter:



    I agree; and here's why:

    On first glance, the training system does appear quite restrictive. In some respects, that is true, but when you 'take the hood off' and get into the mechanics, there is more to it than meets the eye. I shall endeavor to explain.

    The "General" Training category provides a standard routine, that can be customized to some degree by 'tweaking' the sliders of the various categories. I get the impression that many players do not delve beyond this. If you leave all players on this same training routine, you are very limited in what you can achieve, in specifically defining a player's individual improvement and stat maintenance.

    However, you have the ability to create your own 'New Schedules'. I thoroughly recommend taking the time to do so. For me, the next step up the 'depth-ometer' would be to create different schedules for each position. Setting up a schedule for Goalkeepers, Full Backs, Defenders, Midfielders, Wingers and Forwards can be very rewarding, as it allows you to focus on training the main attributes for these positions, rather than grouping them all in on the same "General" schedule. For instance, you can focus your training for each group, to the extent that you want them to work upon Strength, Aerobic, Defending, Ball Control, Attacking, Shooting, and Set Pieces etc.

    Personally, I like to take it a step further. If you have the time (and desire to do so), you can spend some serious time devoted to devising individual personal training schedules for each player. This allows you to further define and target even smaller sets of attributes, for each specific player, in relation to what you want him to improve upon most.

    The only drawback which cannot be changed due to the programming, is that certain attributes cannot be split up and targeted individually. This for me, is frustratingly limiting, if ultimate control of training is what we're after. For example, the "Set Pieces" routine will train a player in the areas of Crossing, Corners, Free Kicks, Penalties and Long Throws. In an ideal world, I should be able to split these up even further, and tailor my training in each skill as required. Though as it currently stands, if I set a winger to train intensively on set pieces to hone his crossing ability, he'll be spending equal amounts of time working upon his free kicks, corners etc as well.

    So, it's not a perfect system, but in my view, it is still a pretty decent one, if you're willing to invest the time into honing it to your requirements, within the framework given to you by SI.



    I cannot comment on 3D, as my machine does not currently have the capabilities to run it, so I'm still playing in 2D mode. But the match engine itself, whilst not 'perfect', seems to be improving with each incarnation. I am hopeful that FM2010 will be even better, from what I've read in the blogs so far.



    The transfer system, for me, has been one of the lesser areas of the game. I find transfers to be initially realistic, but over a long term game, many players of FM find that the AI does not spend wisely enough in investing in young talent, thus rendering them stuck with 35+ year old aging 'has beens' as the mainstay of their squads, whilst you snap up all the good young players. Hence the longer you play, the less challenging the game can become.
    Don't get me wrong, I still feel it to be good system (short term), but there is certainly room for improvement. Hopefully SI will deliver that improvement in FM2010. I remain hopeful that they will.



    You are welcome. Hopefully I have been able to be of some assistance.

    Overall, you cannot go wrong with Football Manager. Sure, it has it's faults, like all games do, but if you're holding it up against other Management Sims, there is simply no comparison. If FIFA and CM were rivers.....
    FM would be a vast Ocean.

    I hope you decide to try FM2010 for yourself, and that you find much enjoyment in your new game.

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