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Thread: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

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    Default Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Im just wondering what direction SI are planning to go with this series. Im all for realism and having lots of options and for the game to be difficult - I want to struggle to succeed etc. But I cant help noticing this game doesnt seem to be hard for footballing reasons, but for programming reasons

    Every year SI add more details and make the game more complex so it will play more reaslistically BUT I think as a manager we are given too many options ESPECIALLY during matches. I mean if Im winning late on in a game Ive gotta change half a dozen sliders by "x" number of points for virtually every player, as well as changing some of the team settings and the players positions - whereas in real life a manager would grab the nearest player (not literally) and tell them to play play defensively, that player would let the rest of the team know and hey presto the whole team starts playing more defensively. Honestly if I went to my striker in real life and asked him to try playing 1/20 more defensively nothing would happen, whereas in the game that could be the difference between holding onto a lead and losing it in the last second

    Unless Im missing something when Im at matches the manager doesnt call a "time out" and get every player on the pitch to come to him 1 by 1 and give them instructions. And seriously do we need SO many points on the slider? People talk about realism but if I want to go attacking for example I find myself thinking do I want to be 3 points from the end or 5 points? Or maybe right on the "all out attack" option? Not only that but Ill have to change all the closing down settings and creative freedom settings and theres the same problem of exactly what notch on the slider to put it to. Whereas if I were a manager in real life I would be on the touchline screaming GO FORWARD at the team, and as long as Id covered it in training (as a real life manager would) the team would know what to do

    I know people on these boards always seem to say "its your tactics" and honestly they are probably right but I think thats the problem. If my defenders stand still and do absolutely nothing every time a ball is played over the top and their striker keeps getting in behind because of it, thats nothing to do with my tactics, its my defenders being morons but alas Im sure if I change one of the random sliders 1 notch to the left or right it'll stop happening, but why?

    The best way to play this game at the moment seems to be to figure out all the variables and the way its been programmed simply to get your players to do what you want them to. Also players pay way to much attention to what we say, I mean do you think Alex Ferguson tells Rio Ferdinand exactly how to play in every match? Of course not I think if he had to go to every player and explain there exact role in the team before every match they'd never make it to the pitch. All player instructions and stuff like that should be given and worked on in training, then on matchday it'll be more overall tactics for everyone (stuff like telling a player to mark a player etc) or stuff like telling a midfielder to get forward whenever he can (in the game Id have to set that and try to figure out the correct closing down, mentality creative freedom, passing forward runs, marking etc etc and most of the time Ill get it wrong and hell either end up in the middle of nowhere for the entire game or standing next to my target man doing nothing) Also after doing that Ill prob have forgotten the exact settings I had him at before, and he'll never play as well for me again


    ALSO why the hell do I have to tell my players to show players onto their weaker foot? I think I knew that before I was a teenager, and I didnt even play football for the 1st time til I was 10! I know footballers are generally idiots but come on if theres one thing these guys know about its football! If that option has to be there the "weaker foot" option should be removed so you at least tell your players which is their weaker foot (left/right)

    Sorry about this its just I loved this game and the whole series and Im just getting the feeling that its gonna be impossible to really enjoy it now unless I spend hours and hours and hours going through different tactics and checking every little thing and I have a life and dont really have time for that! I personally think this game is too much for casual gamers, and if the stuff on it continues to grow and become more complex as Im sure it will then I can see a lot of people not bothering because its got to a point now where its ridiculous

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    I do agree with you to an extent, but I wouldn't want it oversimplifying either. As far as the sliders go, I try not to think of them as numbers. If I nudge it the mentality one up a couple of notches, I think of it as saying "I want you to attack a bit more than you have been doing" rather than "I want you attacking about 14 on a scale of 1-20". If there were only 5 notches, I wouldn't be able to do that.

    As for simplifying things on matchday, you're right. But as long as we have the current set-up, where tactics and training aren't linked in any way whatsoever, there isn't really another alternative to the current way of doing things.

    I think adding a bit (well, a lot) of common sense to the players' movements would be a massive help to the game. The difference between a top defender and a League Two standard defender, for example, is not that the League Two defender stands watching the ball fly over him when a goalkeeper kicks it long. The difference between a top class striker and a League Two striker is not that a League Two striker can't hit a ball with power, or attempt to go past the keeper when he's one on one.

    Finally, the "Show on to weaker foot" thing does come in useful sometimes. If I'm against an opposition where neither of their front 2 strikers are any good in the air, I'd actually prefer my fullbacks to push the wingers out wide, even if it is on to their stronger foot. The chances of them whipping in a cross that my defenders wouldn't be able to deal with comfortably are quite remote. By the same token, I don't want them pushing the opposition's right-footed left-sided striker on to his weaker foot, as that means he's running straight at my goal. (Again, common sense would actually stop that one)

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Agree with pretty much everything you just said, the whole tactics set up in this game couldn't be much more different than real life if it tried. Having a lot of knowledge of the tactical side of football in real life means nothing in the game, its far too complex. I mean is there really 20 different types of passing in between short and long? Or how about 20 different styles of time wasting from rarely to never? The same applies to the other settings, yet tackling is kept nice and simple, why cant the rest of settings be like that?

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    You make some good points. I think that sliders with too many clicks are unrealistic too. I don't hate sliders, and there's plenty of them so that you can design your own unique tactic anyway, without the need for 20 clicks.

    Still, some people like it this way. So, in order to keep more people happy, perhaps the relevant sliders (mentality, creative freedom, passing, and closing down) in the Team Instructions section of Tactics, could be transformed into "global" sliders to push up (or down) everybody's settings
    , much like the Workload slider in the Training section.

    That would translate to you on the touchline screaming at your players to get forward (or to stay back or whatever). And at the same time, the team would keep the same "shape".

    But yeah, for the record, I think that Ultra-Defensive, Defensive, Normal, Attacking, and Gung-Ho, should be all that's needed really. In terms of mentality. For passing: Short, Short/Mixed, Mixed, Mixed/Direct, Direct, Long. These are areas where I wish SI hadn't added so much "scope" and had kept it more realistic.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    But you can create tactics and save them.
    So if you only want to be able to specify "Gung-ho" or "ultra-defensive" (for example), rather than tweaking a load of sliders by up to 20 notches, save yourself a tactic with the settings you want and switch to it at the relevant point in the game.
    There's your realism with just yelling your vague but realistic instructions at the nearest player and getting him to pass it on.

    Problem solved - without removing the added fine control for everyone who likes it.

    Besides, is it really realistic for a manager to just tell his players to play ultra-defensive, without some more details around what he defines that as exactly? I don't think so. He will have explained what he means by it in some detail in training.
    So to summarise, define to your players exactly what you mean by ultra-defensive etc (by setting the sliders and saving that as a tactic) then during a match you can simply click on the required variation of your tactic depending on the game situation.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Is it really realistic for a manager to tell his players he wants him to play a 2 on a scale of 17?

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Quote Originally Posted by 4457 View Post
    Is it really realistic for a manager to tell his players he wants him to play a 2 on a scale of 17?
    No, not really.
    But it's not realistic just to say ultra-defensive either.
    Until SI invent true AI players that you can just speak sentences to, I'm happy with a 1-20 rating system to get my point across to them.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Its not perfect, but until you think of a viable alternative entire system and either post it up here, or sell it to Championship manager SI will just have to do their best.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    I agree with this totally.

    It seems to me that the game is getting ahead of its self in a lot of areas. New features and tactical parameters keep being added before the old ones are perfected.

    The "common sense" aspect of the game is what lets it down the most for me. In real life, if i personally became the manager of manchester united i would be a useless manager (probably). But even with my lack of experience and tactical knowledge i am sure i wouldnt have to tell players to tackle an oncoming striker rather than standing and watching him or to kick the ball into an empty net rather than turning round and booting it 50 yards back down the pitch. Players wouldnt have to be told that if you stand 8 yards behind another player, chances are you are never going to win a header!

    I think there are certain things we dont have any control over (and rightly so), but arent implemented correctly into the game.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    The game can impossibly emulate talking to the players, planning tactics before the match, etc. And therefore your options in the game have to be this detailed. And yes, there certainly are many way to play the game, but it would be too abstract to implant directly, which is why you have number instead, enough numbers to be able to cover every single style of play.

    Having a scale from 1-20 about the passing, would be like talking to your playing and explaining your idea about the play, which would leave them with an impression that could be many different things between long balls and short passing. The players won't follow your tactics perfectly as well, but the many different options make sure you have a lot of room for thought and to manipulate things as well as you can.

    Having a good concept of football does indeed help a lot in setting the tactics. However, the match-engine isn't perfect, so yes, learning how is works plays a big part as well, just as it is with every game.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    I do agree with you here but to your point about the sliders. This has been discussed before and no-one could come up with a better system so the sliders stayed. Unless a better idea comes out before 2010 then I reckon the sliders will still be involved although I don't really like them, but I can't think of a better way to do it at the moment.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    I wonder if we could have reduced options during the match. At the moment you can make tiny adjustments during the game which would really be virtually impossible to get across, perhaps you should only have full access the tactics options at the start and at half time and during game we could only have some general options (push up, close down more, get everyone forward, sit tight for 5 minutes, calm down in possession) and maybe the option to switch between pre learned tactics - we could set tactics to be worked on in training, and the players would "learn" their roles within them, much as they learn positions gradually filling up to accomplished. This would allow teams who had worked hard on multiple tactical set ups to switch between them easily and effectively, and would mean that a new manager would take time to get his tactics across as in real life.

    For the show on to weaker foot issue, I think it should be assumed that players naturally show onto weaker foot, as any player would do. Instead we should have an option to show inside or outside, which would override that natural play. Thus we could try and force the opposition wingers inside and flood the centre to gain possession, or get behind the ball in the centre and force the play out the wings if we are confident we can deal with crosses.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Here's what I do, I have several saved tactics and coming the end of the match and I want the lads to park the bus, I simply load the desired tactic and shuffle the lads' position around. That way you only need to worry about all those sliders when setting your tactics the first time

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    Wink Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Quote Originally Posted by am4387 View Post
    I wonder if we could have reduced options during the match. At the moment you can make tiny adjustments during the game which would really be virtually impossible to get across, perhaps you should only have full access the tactics options at the start and at half time and during game we could only have some general options (push up, close down more, get everyone forward, sit tight for 5 minutes, calm down in possession) and maybe the option to switch between pre learned tactics - we could set tactics to be worked on in training, and the players would "learn" their roles within them, much as they learn positions gradually filling up to accomplished. This would allow teams who had worked hard on multiple tactical set ups to switch between them easily and effectively, and would mean that a new manager would take time to get his tactics across as in real life.
    I love this idea.
    Of course you'd get people complaining about the change. I can just imagine future posts.
    "My favourite version was FM09 when you still had some control during a match. Now SI have gone and ruined the game by making changes to it - the swines"

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    I felt the tactical side for 0102 was pretty much spot on. Even the tactical option of where to make your players run to on and off the ball was good enough for me.

    I think there's a big contrast between casual and hardcore gamers and SI can't seem to get it right for either sides. The hardcore players want loads more tactical options and depth in everything where as casual players will complain about that...

    Very good post though, i'm very agreeable on each aspect.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Quote Originally Posted by davesearle1984 View Post
    Whereas if I were a manager in real life I would be on the touchline screaming GO FORWARD at the team, and as long as Id covered it in training (as a real life manager would) the team would know what to do
    Funny. That's exactly what I do in FM.

    Seriously. Before a match ("covering it in training"), I set up ("Save Tactics") four to six tactics which I'm going to use, all from the same base formation, which cover situations like:
    - Defending a late lead (minimal forward runs, all defenders "Stay Back" on corners, no counter-attack)
    - Defending a lead mid-game (counter-attack, mixed forward runs, one defender gets forward)
    - Normal situation / tactic
    - Patient attack for trailing mid-game
    - Desperation attack for trailing in the final minutes

    Then I use "Load Tactic" to shout "Okay, Patient Attack" to my captain, and he disperses the information to everybody else.. Presto!

    Sure, if you're doing that manually every game, I can imagine why it feels unrealistic to you, but this way feels realistic and its time-saving.

    . . .

    Honestly if I went to my striker in real life and asked him to try playing 1/20 more defensively nothing would happen, whereas in the game that could be the difference between holding onto a lead and losing it in the last second
    Not really. His attributes, concentration, motivation, condition, etc, are all going to make a bigger difference than 1/20 of a Mentality point. Yeah, a tick on the slider does change the odds of him making X decision, and that may slightly change your odds of holding a lead or losing it .. but honestly, tactics aren't that over-sensitive.

    Get the "gist" of your tactic right, so that the players move the way you want them to move, and you're able to do well enough at this game.

    . . .

    ALSO why the hell do I have to tell my players to show players onto their weaker foot?
    Because, at the highest levels, that's not a no-brainer.

    Sure, as youth players, one can gain a huge advantage by forcing some kid who can only control the ball with his right foot to try and use his left. At the professional level, taking away one side gives the player plenty of room on the other. If he can exploit that, you're in a world of trouble.

    I'm only using "Weaker Foot" for a few specific players in the opposition, and leave most players played straight up. I wouldn't want the game to "assume" that I want to "Show Onto Weaker Foot" for all players .. and the comment about making us figure out which foot is weaker? Terrible! THAT would be a massive waste of time, for something that ought to be easy for the game to figure out.

    . . .

    I've disagreed with some of your individual points, but I think your closing paragraph gets it spot on:

    Sorry about this its just I loved this game and the whole series and Im just getting the feeling that its gonna be impossible to really enjoy it now unless I spend hours and hours and hours going through different tactics and checking every little thing and I have a life and dont really have time for that! I personally think this game is too much for casual gamers, and if the stuff on it continues to grow and become more complex as Im sure it will then I can see a lot of people not bothering because its got to a point now where its ridiculous
    I agree with this. I do feel like I invest a lot of time and energy in tactics and "every little thing", and I worry that the game is becoming too complex for the casual gamer. I worry that that's going to limit adoption of the game by new users, and that that is bad for the long-term health of the series.

    However, I sense that SI are concerned about that as well. When you look at the helpful features they've introduced over the past couple of versions: Coach Report, the Advisor system, the Assistant Manager Feedback system .. its clear that they are progressing in the direction of giving a new or casual user the assistance that he needs to come to terms with the overwhelming array of options at his fingertips.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    ???????????????

    If you need to change things around dont overcomplicate things, people seem to do that a lot. I play normally as 4-4-2. One of the formations that tears this apart and i get beat regularly by is the 4-2-4 formation, or 4-2-2-2 formation with 2 AM wingers.

    so what do i do to combat this? Do i adjust all my mentatlity to counter it, i.e more defensive for some players, more attacking for others, change passing, marking etc?

    No i change the formation using standard formations to counter it after playing with my normal tactics to see how i will fair.

    the result: I looked at their formation, i saw how the game was going against my formation, i changed formation in one click..... profit.

    The lesson learned: Don't over complicate things then come and whine about them being complicated when your the complicatee.

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    Question Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nezza View Post
    But you can create tactics and save them.
    So if you only want to be able to specify "Gung-ho" or "ultra-defensive" (for example), rather than tweaking a load of sliders by up to 20 notches, save yourself a tactic with the settings you want and switch to it at the relevant point in the game.
    There's your realism with just yelling your vague but realistic instructions at the nearest player and getting him to pass it on.

    Problem solved - without removing the added fine control for everyone who likes it.

    Besides, is it really realistic for a manager to just tell his players to play ultra-defensive, without some more details around what he defines that as exactly? I don't think so. He will have explained what he means by it in some detail in training.
    So to summarise, define to your players exactly what you mean by ultra-defensive etc (by setting the sliders and saving that as a tactic) then during a match you can simply click on the required variation of your tactic depending on the game situation.
    The trouble with switching between saved tactics sets is that the tweaks made in-match are lost (eg close marking / hard tackling a winger), and I make good & regular use of this tweaks with the Ass Mans feedback now. Clearly pre-set tactic options are necessary, is it not posible that "changes" to tactics in game could be saved as a "change template"? which can then be loaded over an uploaded tactic set if required so switching (eg Counter Attack to Defensive pre-sets) so the "changes made" between KO and that point can be added to the new selected tactic. Would be helpful to me.

    Hope that made sense!

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    It sometimes reminds me of a world war two game I once played. I'd set my troops up, then the enemy came and started shooting at us. I had to go along to each and ever platoon and give them orders to fire back.

    Great original post, nail hit on head. Far too complicated, almost to the point of having to give instructions to kick a ball when it comes near.

    Still the best game out there, just saying could be even better

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    artificial difficulty;

    the game isn't getting harder due to it being more realistic, its getting harder due to the match engine getting worse and the tactical implementation getting ever more bloated, confusing and misleading. Case in point - its hard to do well unless you read a 50 page document made by someone who actually worked on the match engine.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Quote Originally Posted by pdbravo View Post
    It sometimes reminds me of a world war two game I once played. I'd set my troops up, then the enemy came and started shooting at us. I had to go along to each and ever platoon and give them orders to fire back.
    I can't remember what it's called, but I've played that.

    The most perfect game in the Universe is Company of Heroes. Just the right amount of tactical play, and the right amount of autonomy too.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    I love the game, especially after the patch. I am not a programmer, but I am a football fan.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Quote Originally Posted by VonBlade View Post
    I can't remember what it's called, but I've played that.

    The most perfect game in the Universe is Company of Heroes. Just the right amount of tactical play, and the right amount of autonomy too.
    Yes, Company of Heroes is the best game on the planet at the moment for Computer.

    I also love the game, I can not program anything but my TV.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Quote Originally Posted by peter-evo View Post
    Yes, Company of Heroes is the best game on the planet at the moment for Computer.

    I also love the game, I can not program anything but my TV.
    Someone actually got me that game last Christmas, I'm looking at the box now, never even played it yet...might give it a try if its recommended...

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Quote Originally Posted by pdbravo View Post
    Someone actually got me that game last Christmas, I'm looking at the box now, never even played it yet...might give it a try if its recommended...
    It is difficult, only play if you are in to RTS though.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    I'm into pretty much any kind of either football or WWII strategy related, hence someone got me it. It looked too much like Hidden & Dangerous (which I thought was crap) so I never even opened it.

    Gonna install it now.

    Apologies to the op for going off topic. I've had an idea or two for improvements to the tactical side, I'll put together a detailed post when I get time (I used to be a software developer so it wont be just crap, it'll be something they would be able to use).

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Quote Originally Posted by tigerhgrrrrrr View Post
    The trouble with switching between saved tactics sets is that the tweaks made in-match are lost (eg close marking / hard tackling a winger), and I make good & regular use of this tweaks with the Ass Mans feedback now. Clearly pre-set tactic options are necessary, is it not posible that "changes" to tactics in game could be saved as a "change template"? which can then be loaded over an uploaded tactic set if required so switching (eg Counter Attack to Defensive pre-sets) so the "changes made" between KO and that point can be added to the new selected tactic. Would be helpful to me.

    Hope that made sense!
    Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes.

    Something definitely needs to be done - at the very least, save the Opposition Instructions I'm using and allow me to "clear all" on my own if that's what I want.

    That it "forgets" them is so frustrating and time-consuming.

    I'm not sure how well other parts of a "change template" would work. Sure, if I've set my DR to Explicit Man Mark their AML, and I change tactics within my 4-4-2 framework, I might still want that ... but if I'm changing to something like a 3-5-2 to chase the game, I might not. So, its hard to tell which would be more of a bother .. though perhaps if I could click "Apply Changes Previously Made This Match", that would work: optional, one-click, and fully in the user's control.

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    Default Re: Is this game aimed at football fans or programmers?

    Always felt the same way but couldn't explain it as well as you did

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