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Amaroq

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Posts posted by Amaroq


  1. Six ideas for Team-Talks:

    - Improve Team Talk Feedback

    - Add "Motivation" to the Select Team Talk screen

    - Add a "Special Team Talk Available" icon to the Select Team Talk screen

    - Rename the "None" team talk

    - Add a pop-up indicating in more detail what the team-talk means in context

    - Don't provide any team-talk which is nonsensical in context

    Discussed in more detail at:

    Team-Talks: UI improvements?


  2. Manual Rolling Save Mode

    Spot on - I wholeheartedly endorse this idea.

    I've got the exact same habit crouchaldinho has, Ctrl-S after every match, because I hate it when a power outage or Windows bluescreen makes me replay a match. However, because of that, I rarely go the full week and get the benefit of the rolling save mode.

    Never understood why it isn't linked - if I have rolling autosave on, just "roll" every time I save regardless of whether its human-initiated or auto-initiated.


  3. (I followed with:)

    That's a brilliant idea, crouchaldinho. Just like pre-match scouting, some post-match breakdown. Would love to see that done up well - it would be a great boon to players who are struggling.

    Especially if it tackled some of the why behind one's struggles. For example, in the current A.M. feedback module, you can see things like "We've really struggled with our passing, gifting them tithe ballme and again." However, it doesn't address why that's happening, or give me any suggestions as to what I might want to change tactically to try and address that.

    If this post-match analysis could come in and say, "Look, we just kept hitting it direct up to two strikers who were well-covered. We'd have been better suited to try some possession build-up," or, "Listen, the soggy wet conditions made a mockery of our attempts to play short possession football", that might help me understand why my tactical approach was wrong for the day.

    (End of cross-post)


  4. To which crouchaldinho replied with the following idea:

    Really good idea Amaroq and something easy to implement as this already happens with the tactical options (i.e. if you hover the mouse over them).

    I would also like to see assistant manager feedback implemented for after the game has finished. So after a match you get a message in the inbox saying, 'You assistant has spent some time analysing the performance against Team X and he feels...'

    Such information could include responses such as:

    '...the assistant feels that the team talk "no pressure" resulted in some of the players feeling complacent and unmotivated'.

    '...the assistant notes that your supportive half-time team talk completely failed to motivate your players to defend their lead.'

    '...the assistant mentions that Player X was confused by your inappropriate team talk as he couldn't understand why you were angry with his level of performance.'

    It could even be tactical or other general issues:

    '...the assistant feels that we didn't get it tactically right on the day and that we should spend some time looking at why our passing let us down'.

    '...the assistant feels that we weren't adventurous enough on this occasion and that we should have thrown caution to the wind in the second-half'.

    '...the assistant feels that team gelling issues are one of the key problems at the moment and he hopes that things will get better as the side play more matches'.

    Just an idea... I realise that it would have to be a lot more complex and interesting than this.

    C.


  5. (Cross-post from FM'09 going back on the shelf)

    Here's my thought on team-talks.

    Currently, we have a very short phrase to choose from, which has to be short because it has to fit into a drop-down menu with limited size.

    As has been noted often, some of the labels don't match exactly what is being said; I thought team-talks were "broken" until I figured out that I can use "None" at times; I think of it as "Keep it up, lads, now let's talk tactics."

    However, wouldn't a lot of the ambiguity go away if the game UI presented us with wwfan's longer extrapolations of meaning (post 514)? For example, as mouse-over text, or using some of the space which is unused when I have an 11+7 squad to choose from.

    E.g., place up at the top a bit which says "Current talk: ". Then, as I toggle through options on the drop-down, it indicates what I'm 'actually' saying, so .. when I select "We can win this", it shows me wwfan's line - "Current talk: This will be a tight match, but if we play to the best of our ability we can win this."

    SI would have a spot more translations to do, sure, but I think that it would be a dramatic improvement in terms of the impact to the "average" user - the one who isn't out here on the forums and expects team-talks to be a common-sense, "does what it says on the tin" module.

    It would, in particular, be useful if those "Current talk:" lines changed according to the context, so that the case where a slight favorite says "We can win this", gets to halftime 0-0, and says "Pleased" is clearly different from the case where a massive underdog says "No pressure", gets to halftime 0-0, and says "Pleased".


  6. Brilliant stuff, Captain.

    4. A career confidence bar - No point.

    There is a point, actually. The current Confidence bar is very much a "What have you done for me lately" approach. Yes, it does seem modern football has that attitude often .. but then you also see long-term legends like Sir Alex. When we're talking about 20-season save games, that's the sort of character we're talking about ... and yeah, at that point, I think a career confidence bar adds a lot.

    It sort of hints towards the Club Legend status that I've proposed elsewhere - in which, basically, if your achievements dramatically exceed the club's reputation when you first took over, then you've achieved a sort of permanent Legend status with the club. In my suggestion, boards would be willing to "write off" one season of failed expectations as bad luck / injury crisis / rebuilding .. board takeovers would find it impossible to sack you because of the fan backlash .. and you'd be able to be sacked / resign / accept a different job without falling off the Club Favorites list.

    Its a pretty simple set that I was asking for, but I think C.P.'s idea gives that a lot more depth than I was thinking of, and Gypsum's follow-on post about Iconic players is equally valuable for that continued-immersion-after-20-years factor.

    6. The Manager dot! - No point.

    Umm... we have the fourth official dot and two physio dots .. how is the manager dot any less useful than either of those?

    Imagine seeing the manager dot come a yard onto the pitch to argue a call, or move to the end of the box to argue with the fourth official, or huddling close to a player as he gets his final instructions before stepping onto the pitch. Immersive, nothing else.

    . . .

    The ideas I'd add, C.P., are around #5 -

    5. Manager stats/attributes

    I'm my own manager, how I play the game is totally different to my mates and there should be some attributes and stats that relate to that. The ones that exist currently again seem half-implemented and don't seem to work correctly (e.g. preferred marking style ont he personal screen).

    I would love to see a set of number than breaks down what I'm like as a manager, I'd like number to say that I'm a wheeler and dealer in the transfer market, I please the media and I'm quite angry in the dressing room. I also want it to show what my current favourite formation is as well as playing style.

    I think it would be fantastic if these attributes and stats related to other game content too. Media/Other Manager comments about me and my personality and my preferred playing style. This is in already in a very limited fashion and could be expanded on.

    I'd very much like to see these things built up.

    Preferred Formation, Preferred marking style, etc., should all be things that the game can "understand" just by looking at what I trot out every week.

    My other behaviors, similarly - in fact, it might help players learn how the game is interpreting what they are saying. For example, if it told me I was "quite angry in the dressing room", I'd realize that I was being more volcanic than I'd intended to be.

    Beyond that, though, there is a bunch of "stat" things we could see.

    Why not a "History" page similar to that for clubs and players?

    I'd love to be able to look back and see my club, league, W-D-L, GD, and finishing position for every season of every managerial stint I've had, maybe with termination results, for example:

             Club         W  D  L   GD  GF GA  Pos   
    2008/09  AGOVV        1  7 12  -27   9 36  20th  Dutch Erest Divisie    Sacked
    2008/09  Port Talbot  5  6 10  - 8  26 34  13th  Welsh Premier League
    2009/10  Port Talbot 10  5  9  + 6  36 30   6th  Welsh Premier League   Resigned


  7. As a general rule, assuming mostly British players settling into an English squad, all speaking English and of average adaptability .. you'll see marked improvement by the six-month mark, probably a bit earlier; I usually see my team start to "gel" around the end of November, start of December.

    If you don't change the team, by the second season, they will feel infinitely more consistent.

    ... of course, that's assuming that things don't "go wrong", like players disliking each other, etc.


  8. Just giving a bit of insight into the industry, and I don't work for SI so this is industry info, not SI-specific:

    For most annual-installment games, the process is at least 10 months in length, sometimes as long as 20.

    Identifying the feature set for next year's game is usually done before this year's game completes, so for SI, summer of '08 is when they would be discussing the design goals for FM'10, and what they're going to put their resources into.

    Major feature revisions might start in summer '08, with a couple of senior architects looking at it, but most of the team will still be focused on FM'09 at that time.

    Once FM'09 launches (fall '08), most of the team will take a well-earned vacation, say two to four weeks. Then the majority of the team will come in to work on FM'10. Stuff will probably start a bit slowly, say, through December, as people take a bit of a natural "breather", look at bugs for FM'09 patches, etc.

    By January, though, things will be in full swing as major feature development cranks out: Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr, probably, will see the most progress on the game. QA (the test team) may be asked to test specific modules as those modules are completed.

    By about four months until launch (May '09, for SI's case), the game is usually considered "Feature complete", and is ready to enter full testing. If the company have an "alpha" team, those testers would receive it. QA begins their heavy testing period.

    About six weeks until launch (mid-August?), the game would start getting "locked down". Depending on the company, the process will differ, but its not uncommon to have a "Bug Council" that will decide whether a bug is worth the risk of fixing at this late date, can be targeted to a future patch, or should be assigned to next year's game. For the most part, only "showstoppers", e.g., major broken functionality, crash bugs, etc, are worth the risk of a late fix .. If there is a "beta program", those testers would probably receive the game at around this time.

    SI take their final DB update with transfers from the end of the summer window, e.g., August 30th, so let's figure that DB update gets in by a week later, then they have to focus on testing the DB update for a week or two.

    By about two weeks prior to the launch, the team are working on making their "gold master CD", so bug fixes are very few and far between, and testing will be focused on the installer, not the game itself. When the gold master is signed off on, it is sent off to the production facility, and the distribution process outlined earlier begins.

    Of course, after the launch, and depending on the company, there may be patches - SI have a phenomenal service record in this department, which I don't think we-the-community give them enough credit for. So, some team members may remain focused on FM'10 through December '09 and that January '10 data update .. eighteen months after it all started.

    So, "Why can't we buy it earlier?" ... basically, we get to buy it at the earliest date that SI think it is "ready" and can run it through the production and distribution process.


  9. Canvey, the bad news is, I have high expectations of your story, given your writing in this thread. icon_wink.gif

    PM7, yeah, I thought about that, but I decided I would be accessible to more readers if I acknowledged to myself that skimming happens .. I'll even skim a bit when reading a novel for the first time. So, I've tried to accommodate them. I imagine that I have some readers who are reading the story bits but skipping to the bottom for scores and goalscorers .. while others who may only read my match summaries .. so I wanted to support both.

    Canvey, one other bit you may not have noticed specifically is that I try to post the score at the end of each goal-scoring paragraph, if not more often, for those who skim the match reports. I list the Blades first, so I'll say 0-1 to indicate that we're trailing even though I read it as "one-nil" in my head, and if I'm talking about a hypothetical score I'll always write it in full, for example "Newell almost made it two-nil a minute later, but .."

    I suppose I should have realised, Amaroq, that's the reason for the boldface. I have to admit I am a bit of a skimmer of your story myself (KUTGW by the way; I'm currently on p3 of Book II), and surprisingly I haven't noticed how I've subconsciously picked up on these players.

    In fact, without me realising it, that helps a lot when I read the story. I'm no huge fan of reading the reports on every player at the start of a story, but when you pick up on them at the start of every match, I soon get to learn their position and skill level, meaning I can get away with not reading the individual reports at the start of a season/job. With my FMS, I've decided to write these reports in chunks when the story suits it, and when I feel the protagonist is getting to know these players. I don't like to write one post of just player reports, because that bores me, and is generally incongruent with the story.

    I agree. When I get a full-team report in a single post, I tend to skim it by the time I'm halfway through the defenders, even if I meant to read it in full.

    That's why I started doing the "one position at a time" style that you'll see in Blade, and also why I list the top performers first - if you're a skimmer, then for every position you can pretty much read the first three and skip the rest, because you know that the first three are going to get the lion's share of the action.

    I also thought a lot about exactly how I wanted to do the team-sheet listing, and decided to do full-name instead of last name to support the reading-every-fourth-day reader. I learned that from somebody else's story, where they were listing last-names only, and it made perfect sense when I read it from start to finish and remembered the first names that went with the last names because they were fresh in my mind .. but when I was checking in on the story after I was "caught up", I quickly lost track of who was who. So, I figured I'd give a paragraph over to that for each match to reinforce the first-name last-name and position of each player .. and thats the only thing in that paragraph, so those who don't like it can skip it and know that the next paragraph is the opening kickoff.

    I really did put a lot of thought into my match-writeup format, and tried out several variations on myself before settling on what I did!

    Of course, its probably made the story "too long" for some readers.

    I love the way that in FMS, there's no strict guidelines to story-writing. Everyone has a different style, and I reckon I've got one of the most different.

    Absolutely.

    Professional writers call that "Finding your 'voice'," and its really one of the biggest components I think to writing successfully. Compare and contrast Robert Heinlein, Lois McMaster Bujold, Kim Harrison, and Janet Evanovich: totally different voices, different styles, you could never ever mistake one for the other .. and all either very successful or on their way.

    That's been one of the hardest challenges for me writing outside of FM: here I "found my voice", but in entirely-original creative venues, I find myself aping too much whomever I have most recently read!


  10. Originally posted by canvey!!:

    Also, I've noticed in stories, particularly Amaroq's, that some players in squad selections at the start of the match are emboldened, whereas others aren't. Why are some emboldened, or do you just choose the ones which you feel will make an impact?

    I suppose I ought to answer that. icon_wink.gif I've tried to write both for the reader who diligently reads every word, and also for the "skimmer" .. so I adopted a number of conventions to help the reader keep track of what they might want to keep track of - score, time, date, etc.

    I didn't figure every reader would read the entire teamsheet every time, but I figured by highlighting two players, usually either impact-players or youngsters getting a run-out with the first team .. it gives something that stands out if you're only glancing over the teamsheet.


  11. I dare say this is one forum where you've got an absolute guarantee that "writing quality" trumps "everything else". I mean, heck, they liked me despite my *****ly demeanor and American IP address. icon_wink.gif Write! Let's see whatcha got!

    icon14.gif To the "quality over quantity" concept, though - something to keep in mind!


  12. <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by skinnymalinky:

    Will a players influence rise if given the armband? My squad is bereft of players with a high influence rating. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Yes. That effect has apparently been around a while, but was made more pronounced with FM'07; somebody said they made one of their guys captain for three years running, and saw his Influence rise from '3' to '18' or so .. I don't know how pronounced it is in '08.

    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by michaelcheetham:

    just confusing that my assistant always reccommends player with highest teamwork. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I think the folks that swear up and down by influence are still living in the CM01/02 world. icon_wink.gif As noted in my linked post, teamwork is pretty key.


  13. Woody, welcome to the forum.

    I think a story which didn't start with "Shockingly, I got the job!" would be a refreshing change. icon_wink.gif

    As for "Not detailing every game you play," there's infinite varieties of detail-level. I aim for about a paragraph-per-goal... while Faramir goes for a paragraph-per-match; we both have big audiences. I could certainly imagine a workable style which "glossed over" weeks at a time, then "slowed down" for key matches or off-the-pitch moments.

    One thing I've really liked is Terk's style, which I think you can get a feel for from the first three posts of the page linked to - he touches on every result descriptively, but some get lumped into the same paragraph, and others get called out in several-paragraph detail.. but every month ends in a month summary with all the results and goalscorers, so its very easy to "keep the plot" when you return to the thread for his most recent update.

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