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Rock Bottom

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  1. Okay let's end this thread. It doesn't lead anywhere. I just did another test that I want to share though before I leave you. I tried another five matches with my normal formation and everything else set to default. The change I did this time was to swap players and let everyone (except the goalie) play on a "red" position. Forwards as defenders and vice versa. The results were: 1-1 0-1 1-1 3-2 1-1 So obviously the player's familiarity with the position is not super important either. There was one big effect though. The opponent consistently had the most possession, best passing percentage and overwhelmingly more corners (all of which my team usually wins). But the shots and goals were even as always. I have no doubt that it is better to play a player on its favourite position, but just as with trying to overload, the effect is way much smaller than what I would have expected. I'm sure you have some kind of explanation for this as well. But as with religion I think we are better off keeping our conclusions to ourselves.
  2. The only reason to change your tactic is because you want to affect the score. If a change don't reflect in the score/stats, then it's worthless. But you are right that the effect might be so small that you need a vast number of statistical samples (matches) before you can draw any conclusions. I have admitted all along that 5 matches is too few really. But I ventilated the results anyway so I could get some valuable feedback before I wasted too much time on it. And it was a good thing because at least I learned that the strategy setting is not as powerful as you would think when you read the in-game description. I want to avoid judging anything by "looking at the match". Mainly because it is not measurable and takes too much time. But a little bit also because it may be a part of the "illusion" that I often get the feeling FM is showing off. I don't know how many times I feel like I have been "destined" to lose a match. Quite often I can say after 15 min, after three framework hits and two 1on1 misses, that this will be a game where I dominate the stats with 25-3 in shots and still lose the game. That prediction comes true uncanningly often. I can also quite frequently spot in a beginning of a highlight that it will end with a goal, because of the extraordinary beautiful sequence of passes that precedes it. It might just be in my head, but it all adds up to this nagging feeling that something is not right.
  3. Why? It only tells me that the chance that the opposing team scores increases more than the chance that your team scores. But the chance that your team scores still increases. It's the same thing when hockey teams take out their goalie in the last minutes of the game when they desperately need a goal. It will increase their chances of scoring. But they don't do it all match, because then they would lose big time.
  4. Uhm, not really. A good tactic gives you higher probability of beating your opponent than a bad tactic. That is necessarily not the same as getting more shots and goals compared to the bad tactic. A defensive tactic against a better opponent might give you a 1-0 win, while an offensive tactic could give you a 2-5 loss. And I mean that even if they fail to succeed with the overload, they will still have a higher chance of scoring if they try than if they just sit back and wait. That's just plain common sense.
  5. The bolded part I must have missed. So the general consensus is that overload as a concept is not the same as "try to make a goal at all costs"? Because if that's true then I have misunderstood football gravely and that would explain everything.
  6. Sigh. Does anyone even understand what I am saying? English is not my first language, so maybe I have a problem expressing myself. Yes, It was very expected that Newcastle would crush Accrington. I haven't said otherwise. If you play ten times with Accrington on overload and 3-4-4 and then ten times with contain and 4-4-2, then my expectation would have been that the 3-4-4 formation should have gotten more shots and more goals than the 4-4-2 formation. My expectation is also that the 3-4-4 formation would lose bigger. Let's recap this one last time with short sentences: 1. Overload is a concept that means to push forward as much as possible to maximize the probability of scoring a goal. 2. The FM startegy "overload" did not do this to any greater extent, because strategy is apparently overruled by formation and other things. 3. I tried to set up a new formation to get a behaviour that at least looked like the team was doing overload, i.e. 3-4-4. 4. The probability of my team scoring went down instead of up. Nr 1. is the cornerstone of my argumentation. It may be faulty, but I base it on the fact the real teams actually try to attack when they are down by 1 and just a few minutes left to play. I have never seen a team falling back to a defensive formation waiting for a mistake from the opponent to make that last minute equalizer (except for teams that are too tired to push forward). Actually, would it be wrong to claim that "overload" is the definition of "try to make a goal at all costs"? Nr 4. counter proofs nr 1. This can mean one of four things: a) Nr 1. is faulty. b) My setup still lacks a setting for getting the simulator to understand that I want to overload. From the stats it looks like I am missing the command "Shoot when you get the chance". c) The statistical set of 5 matches is too low. Maybe the results would tune in better with more matches. d) The probability engine does not work as expected. And for all of you that believes that I am trying to prove that overload is a good match strategy to win matches. Please don't respond. All I am trying to do is to figure out if there is any understable logic behind how the probability engine responds to tactical orders. Because frankly, it is very fuzzy. To do this, I started out with the simplest and most straightforward test that should give the most impact on result. Comparing overload vs contain. It failed, and the general feedback I get here is that the ME is too complex to test the impact of single orders. That actually just feeds my feeling that much of FM is an illusion. It's like when religious people defend their faith with comments like "the lord works in mysterious ways and we are not wise enough to understand his full intention". I still hope I'm wrong though. But this far I have not received one useful advice on how I could/should test the ME in a scientific way, so I am starting to believe that there isn't such a way.
  7. Come on, I am testing overloading tactics. I don't use this kind of formation in a normal game.
  8. In my view the context should not matter. Did you have any objections to my reasoning with the England-France example? Because if you do, then we are getting somewhere. There I tried to show that overload (again, real world context here) should maximize the possibility to score a goal in any context. But if you insist: I play Real Sociedad against Osasuna on away turf. They are a rival team which I often have problems with even though I have somewhat better players and the odds are in my favour. Historically we have been quite even (I'm in 2015). They play 4-4-1-1 if I remember correctly. I play 1 center back, 2 offensive wing backs on auto, 2 central midfielders on support (defensive playmaker and a runner), 1 offensive midfielder on attack, the forwards are 1 poacher, 1 complete forward on support and 2 wingers on support (I Think).
  9. To put it simply, YES! The whole meaning of the concept OVERLOAD is to maximize the possibility to score an offensive goal in the shortest period of time possible! And now I'm talking about the real world concept of overload, not the FM concept which clearly is something completely different.
  10. Look at it this way. In the real world. Let's say that England meets France in a quarter final in the WC. The score is 1-2 and there are 10 minutes to go. What would England do? Push the team forward, maybe get another attacker in, get the ball into the penalty area as much as possible, etc. What we call overload. Why would they want to do that? Probably because that is the best way to increase the chance of getting an equalizer. It will of course open up their defenses, but that is a risk worth taking. Can we all agree on the scenario above, or is that where I have gotten everything wrong in my head? So if we established that going overload is the best way to increase the possibility of scoring a goal in the last 10 minutes of the game, why wouldn't the same be true for the first 10 minutes of the game? You might want to say "because overloading only works when the opposing team has switched to contain to defend the score". But that would imply that the best way to neutralise an overloading opponent is to start attacking yourself. I have yet never seen that happen in a real football match. The leading team always wants to play as safely as possible during the last minutes. Let's say that England instead faces a superior team like Spain or Brazil (okay I'm ducking for all the thrown bottles now ). Wouldn't they still try the overload tactic at the end of the game? Because that is still the tactic that gives the best odds of getting an equalizer? Or if they were facing an inferior opponent like Ireland. Still overload, right? So if I put together those statements I get to the conclusion that overload SHOULD increase the possibility of my team scoring a goal at all times against all opposition. Yes, it should also increase the possibility that I get even more goals in the back, but that is another thing. With this background I am surprised that my overload scenario resulted in me scoring fewer goals than normally. I don't see how it could "depend" on a lot of other factors that I have not taken into consideration. Maybe FM is more complex than real life? Have you lived with FM so long that it is completely natural with cause and effect phenomena leading to the conclusion that contain is sometimes the best way of getting that equalizer in the last minutes of the game?
  11. You are right. Strategy is obviously just a fine tuning within the formation. Too bad that the in-game description says otherwise. I played another overload and contain match, now watching the game play more carefully. With the same formation, it is not easy to guess which strategy I'm using. Sure, overload makes the offensive players a little bit more eager to run forward, but it's not obvious. And when I played contain my players were still offensive enough to make a mistake on the midfield and be counter attacked! To get to the behaviour which I would call overload, I had to switch formation to 3-3-4. So I did another test run of 5 matches, formation 3-3-4, strategy overload, style very fluid: 0-3 5-2 1-2 0-3 0-2 Now at least I mostly lose, which I expected. But I don't produce any goals?! Except for the second game when everything went in. Still I had >50% possession in all matches and better passing percentage than my opponent. Weird thing is that shots are surprisingly low, between 6-15 shots per match (my opponent had about the same number of shots). I usually produce that many shots with 4-4-2 and contain. Why don't I get more shots going overload and having most of the ball possession? Do I have to tell my forwards to shoot as well?! So it is as you say. To go overload you have to change formation, change a few playing styles, do a few shouts, and then if you feel like it, although it is not necessary, you may add the overload strategy. But still, I have yet not seen any evidence that this will increase my chances of scoring a goal... Life's a bitch.
  12. As each player has a vast number of options to evaluate at every instance, I would expect the number of calculations to be enormous. I am a programmer with quite some experience in optimizing real time critical algorithms, so I know what I'm talking about. But perhaps I overestimate the depth of each player's decision ground. SI has probably found some short cuts that works well without sacrificing too much realism.
  13. Thanks Svenc and wwfan for your elaborate answers! I'm impressed if it really is true that the matches are simulated from scratch, pass to pass. That is a great accomplishment! Although if they simulate an entire match in 1/8th of a second then I question the complexity of their algorithms a bit. Also somewhat disappointed though, that I still don't see the characteristics of each player shine through in their playing style that well. Yes, it is often reflected in their statistics over a season, but to me the players seem quite anonymous on field (except for guys with high flair doing some showing off). But of course the difference in playing style isn't that obvious in real life either... But I still don't agree that my test in meaningless. The talk about having to consider so much else I don't buy. It is possible that the tactical changes do have effect, but that effect is in any case a lot less than what is to be expected, according to how the strategies are explained in the game. The only outside factor that I can agree could cause the results I got, assuming that overload and contain really are as extreme as they are explained, would be if the opposing team counters my overload with contain and my contain with going overload. And perhaps that is what happens? EDIT: But on the other hand I remember that the stats (shots, possession etc) were quite even in the games I played myself, so I'm not sure I would buy that scenario either. Does any of you guys have an idea how to experimentally figure out how much impact tactical decisions really have?
  14. I still don't get that statement. Strategy and style changes ALL pieces of the puzzle (almost). It's what they are there for! If a tactical decision is not reflected in the score, but merely as changed statistics of ball possession etc, then what is the point of making that decision? Football is only about scoring the most goals, remember . Your explanations are mainly focused on the fact that football is a complex game with lots of intricate factors that counter each other, which makes it difficult to evaluate single parameters. Or something in that direction, right? Are you sure that you aren't a victim of the illusion that FM is more complex than it really is? When you feel that a certain tactic works for you, are you sure that a different tactic wouldn't have given the same result? Maybe FM is just letting you see what you want to see?
  15. Yes, of course. I was thinking about making a post about my thoughts about the simulation as well, but I never did because it was a bit too much of a rant and I basically don't have any real grounds for what I am thinking. But since you got me started I can just outline my thoughts . Warning: All of this is quite speculative so don't take it too seriously! I guess, note guess, that FM is sort of a "top-down" simulator. A few major input parameters, like average team CA, home/away, current form and probably some hidden parameters (e.g. "bad luck"), etc, make up the base for the probability calculation of the score. Then the match is "rigged" to produce that score. However, there is some room for changes during the match, like team talks, shouts and substitutions (and to a very small extent, change of tactics). The opposite would be a "bottom-up" simulator. In that case every single player has their own simulator. The match starts as a blank sheet and evolves when all player probability actions interact with each other. This is how most of us probably thinks a simulator should work. I guess. For a top-down simulator the actions on the field are determined by the calculated score. For a bottom-up simulator the score is determined by the calculated actions on the field. And what has this to do with anything? Maybe nothing. But I suspect that the lack of possibility to actively affect the score by changing tactics etc, could be a consequence of using a top-down simulator. It could be a bit of a mess to drastically change the already calculated match scenario, mid-game. With a bottom-up simulator it would not be a problem, because the future has not been written yet. But with all that said, I do not blame SI if they went for a top-down simulator. Because a bottom-up simulator is probably a heck of a lot more difficult to get working in a realistic way. It would easily lead to chaos phenomenons and weird situations without careful and excessive restrictions/rules for each player. Someone ever heard of the "butterfly effect"? On the other hand. With such a simulator working I think it could produce wonderful matches with much more obvious cause-effect on tactical orders and more visible effect of each player's attributes. As I said, I don't have much ground to back up my guesses. It's mainly the lack of causality effects and the fact that the players' ratings are mostly influenced by the score rather then what they have been doing on field. This is by the way the one single issue that I think SI should focus most on (besides more tactical influence during a match). The only feedback we get about how well a player is doing, is the rating. This is the most important piece of information you have to base your tactical decisions upon. Still, the rating system feels mediocre at best. It's irratic and simple and this makes me wonder if SI actually understands how important it is. Maybe it is well thought through, but in that case SI needs to communicate how it really works. I get that you get a big minus if you make a mistake leading to a goal. You get a big plus if you score a goal or assist. You get a common plus if you are winning the match and common minus if you are losing. These events make up for the biggest part of the rating as I understand it. But it should be the other things, like how many correct passes you have, how many duels you won, how many intelligent runs you made, etc, that really defines how well you are playing. And those things tend to drown. Not to mention that the rating can pop +/-1 back and forth sometimes without no obvious reasons. All in all, I don't know if I can trust the ratings to give a fair view on how good a player is performing. But hey, now I got off track ranting about something completely different. Sorry about that!
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