ArsenalFan7

Why is the AI so much better at finishing?

601 posts in this topic

Not going to go into detail but we all know this is the case, we see it all the time, the AI with barely any shots and scoring whereas we take 20 and don't score.

Here's just one very recent example, I had been 16 or 17 unbeaten before this game, scoring for fun and players feeling confident and brilliant. However for some reason the 7th place Sevilla side with players morale ranging from very poor to just one very good in the starting line up pull through and get that one goal? Why are my players so poor in front of the net? Home advantage, better finishers and everything.

All I'm trying to say is that the AI is better at finishing than us humans and I can't understand why, the AI takes their chances on target very well, us humans do not. Is this just a problem with the ME?

VillarrealvSevillaAnalysis_Analysis-3.png

VillarrealvSevillaAnalysis_Analysis-2.png

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And I do not believe the whole 'It's Luck' theory anymore, this rarely happens in real life, I see it numerous times a season to me alone in FM.

In games I have pretty much most factors favoring me the AI pulls through with one shot on target to score whereas my 20 shots get me just 2 goals, makes little sense.

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The AI isnt a better finisher. For one thing the ME doesn't differentiate between the two inputs. Secondly we have far more tools disposable.

You took 20 shots, as far as i can tell you got 5 on target? Given everything that had gone on beforehand, with your unbeaten run, i'd have been demanding of my player and gone for a more patient probing approach, look the number of blocked shots there were.

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It's all about the quality of the chances not the number, you didn't have many good chance judging by the screen above. You missed the net 5 times. You had 9 blocked. And you had 4 saved. View them back and see exactly why they were blocked or missed.

You can do the same as the AI, give me 5 mins and I'll try and do a game where a team has loads of shots and I have a couple at max and either win or draw by scoring.

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1 shot 1 goal http://www.fmpundit.com/cleon/GD/1.png

9 shots, 7 on target 3 clear chances http://www.fmpundit.com/cleon/GD/2.png

Low number of shots but all quality http://www.fmpundit.com/cleon/GD/3.png

Same as above http://www.fmpundit.com/cleon/GD/4.png

http://www.fmpundit.com/cleon/GD/5.png

I'm the AI in your game http://www.fmpundit.com/cleon/GD/6.png

As you can see we can easily do what the AI does.

It's quality what counts not how many.

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Because when you play the AI with a big team or a team on a massive winning streak, it plays defensively, so the few chances it does get are typically breakaways where your defenders are out of position.

Also, if you are on a winning streak or in a title challenge, your players may be getting complacent or nervous whereas a decent team sitting comfortably in mid-table and expecting, at best, a draw against you will have their strikers under less pressure to score.

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Because when you play the AI with a big team or a team on a massive winning streak, it plays defensively, so the few chances it does get are typically breakaways where your defenders are out of position.

Also, if you are on a winning streak or in a title challenge, your players may be getting complacent or nervous whereas a decent team sitting comfortably in mid-table and expecting, at best, a draw against you will have their strikers under less pressure to score.

Good post.

Not many people on here take this into account :thup:

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http://img689.imageshack.us/img689/296/unreal2.png

So unrealistic,this would happend 1 match in 10 years for same team.It seems in fm its something common,nothing out of ordinary.

For the love of all that is good, stop looking at CCCs.

Its pointless pointing out possession because its obvious that wigan sat back and let you have your way on most of the pitch.

I'm not saying I have no issues with the ME, I just think that people focus too much on CCCs and get all mad because of it. (My main is the amount of shots a team can take when they are dominating the match greatly. I don't think I've ever seen a team take 45 shots in a match before).

I've had plenty of matches where I've had 1 recorded CCC and have scored 4 goals.

The reason I dislike that stat is because it is such an objective one.

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Can anyone recommend how I can get my players to work it into the box then and to effectively take chances?

I constantly tell them to build up the play and work into the box before hitting it but they never do and this could well be the reason why I'm not hitting it in the net enough.

However tbh I am still concerned at how often the AI is able to snatch a goal so effectively with so much more little effort.

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Can anyone recommend how I can get my players to work it into the box then and to effectively take chances?

I constantly tell them to build up the play and work into the box before hitting it but they never do and this could well be the reason why I'm not hitting it in the net enough.

However tbh I am still concerned at how often the AI is able to snatch a goal so effectively with so much more little effort.

Watch games and see what the problems are. And when late in a game stop been so attacking if it happens often against you.

The AI is not the issue, you are and the way you play.

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I think the frustration this causes is we see it occurring repetitively against us in practically every game, and this would obviously come across as a bias, even though it may occur elsewhere, because we don't watch every game. I've been watching a few reserve games, and it still occurs there too, but because my concern is with the 1st team, it is less infuriating. But it is a frequent occurrence across the board on FM12.

I think comparing things that occur in FM to IRL is like comparing RL to a dream. IRL we use the word 'luck' or we even get religious and bring a deity into it. Whereas on a artificial construct Luck or God definitely doesn't exist.

I think we have to ask what exactly controls the game. FM isn't Pro Evo, so we don't hold a joypad, and move players around, so when we see the computer controlling our avatar which misses another sitter, of course we would feel it cannot be our fault? But with all the innumerate possible tactical connotations we have at our disposal, maybe there is something we can do about it.

But seeing similar chances go in against causes the same emotions when the same thing occurs IRL. Infact I am more distraught now when I loose a goal, than I am when I score (because of how difficult it is to score).

So whom is at fault? I heard the other day that games are rated in terms of importance; for instance a friendly would be of 0 importance, and a cup final a 10. So the players have hidden attributes which describes whether they can handle big games, so if they miss a sitter, it was maybe because simply they bottled it.

So when a player is getting ready to score, what is going through his head? When I played football, and I was in front of goal, I always knew or thought I was going to score, and if I did fluffed it, not once did I think, "god I was under pressure then." Does a player on FM have time to realise how big the game is before he shoots? Clearly he does. And in this case we are only at fault for not knowing he couldn't handle the pressure and playing him in the first place.

Is what we are witnessing coded chance - a player's through on goal and based upon some kind of calculation he will score or he will miss (which includes kicking it directly at the keeper).

I've been seeing some really weird things lately, like my usually solid defence conceding silly goals from dead balls; players instructed to keep the ball moving, holding the ball up and getting caught in possession; players with attacking mentality breaking three to one and stopping dead, when they're instructed not to. It seems now I getting pretty good at predicting when I am going to miss these days, and it is usually during a decent move.

As I have said before, regardless of whether I am doing things wrong or right, or whether players are just not up to it, I often create plenty of decent quality chances (and I play a CA system), yet there seems there's is no reward for attacking endeavour on FM (unless you play a meaningless game where the pressure is off). And for those whom keep giving examples of missed chances occurring frequently, this only reinforces my point. So is the lack of goal conversion only to keep scoreline down to reflect RL?

I mean, how else would you program a game to keep scoreline realistic if teams scored with every chance they had? IOW, we're supposed to miss, just as much as we're supposed to score when we do, but knowing and accepting this on a game is extremely difficult to take. Which is why FM is the only computer game where you have to be prepared to lose.

I'd actually go as far as to say, I had a better goal conversion rate with my tactics on FM11, yet even more interesting, I had a better defensive record on FM12 (in my 1st season). So has it become harder to score? It would seem so.

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It's both quality of the shot and luck (sometimes you just can't win no matter what :p, and it goes both ways for your team and the a.i. team). For me while in most games I dominate I also shut down the opponents' quality chances so the 1 shot 1 goal thing rarely happen. My SS from my last European Championship games as I feel they're as honest as it comes (since you can't buy your way to a better quality team managing international team :p), I use a regular 4-4-2 wing tactic

France dominated me but I got a break in the last minutes and turned it around

http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/594714782057607462/05D4A88C5F9796CAB6B9A338BC40731BEF62F0F2/

The table turned around, I dominated 10 man scotland but a defensive collapse allowed them a goal, and then a corner header finished me off plus all those wasteful shooting

http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/594714782057606643/96E65248384E2FF4AF70E165A167D884BA14A8E3/

Even game only mine with clinical finishes :)

http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/594714782057604974/B64F47629F96BF39859B6CF620784C3F75989056/

Close down your defense make sure they can't get attacks in regularly (although there will be time your defense collapse due to player quality and there isn't a thing you can do about that) and work your attacking game to make sure when your forwards manage to get the ball in the area they'll only take the quality shots. I believe in OP's case it was about overpowering your opponents and trying to force the goals in, which works at times and other times will cause a massive failure like the SS

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I specifically changed my tactics to a CA tactic on FM11, and it worked great, including in my 1st FM12 season.

My aim was to either restrict the quality of their chances by sitting deep, covering space, and causing them to simply run out of ideas. And in the same sense, to create space in front of the back four, and behind them for my forwards to run into, creating better quality chances for me to convert. And because of this I only needed to score at least two goals a game to win, but I was top goalscorers most seasons anyway. This tactical idea is how Liverpool used to play in the 70s/80s, and how Man Utd have been playing for 20 years with consistent success.

Now in my 2nd FM12 season it's all change. Numerous bugs rearing their ugly heads which lead directly to goals against; penalities decisions that convientiently come whilst I am drawing or winning by one goal (I didn't concede one pen in my 1st season); goals from dead balls (corners; free kicks), which I rarely concede from, and again the goal only seems to come when it benefits my opponents, not when I am 2-0 up.

And I find the suggestion that teams have worked out how I play now as very convenient, because after my first season I haven't a clue how any of the teams play, or how to counter them with perfect results. I just play what has worked before. And if they have 'worked out' my strategy, how exactly has it done that, because that certainly sounds like an unfair advantage to me.

The problem we have is football in general is very subjective, and there is very little empathy for another person's tactical defiances. And the irony is, the person whom has given an alternative opinion, maybe in a rich vein of form with their save at the time, but sooner or later they will succumb same incomprehensible pitfalls and fickle fate of FM, and they'll soon be adding a different opinions to their first.

FM, like football IRL, is all about emotions. It can fuel the same emotions as RL football, and that is it's gift and it's detriment. Because real football does have real excuses; FM has opinion, doubt and suspicion, because we cannot understand what is making the decisions.

The sad fact is no one can really understand why a FM does what it does. People claim they do, but that is too protect the integrity of a selling product, so of course they would - and the others are just a bit cultist. FM is just a computer model, set up with probably millions of variables, thrown into a hat, and what comes out, just comes out. There's no rhyme or reason. There's no bias or favouritism. There's no luck or god. It just is what it is.

Why a team that only conceded only 10 goals in their 1st league season, can concede 6 goals in three games to small reputation teams, isn't because it doesn't like me any more, or that my system doesn't work any more, it is that the results simple went my way in the first instance. The game doesn't remember I only conceded 10 goals in the previous season, and it doesn't care a jot that I now can't keep clean sheets, even though it was the same computer model that showed me I could. It doesn't care if it is contradicted or even compromised. It's software.

And FM really is like a gambling machine, "just one more go, and I'll win this time."

The sad fact is we're all addicts, and we're all completely disillusioned that we can win every game, because the winning feeling is like a drug, so if we don't, we want to know why (I don't even know how or why I have won a game sometimes never mind how I lose). It's simple a con; we win when we win, and loose when we loose, just like any other game, and this is why, somehow, after the roll of the dice has finished, it does resemble RL events. Because the results are just chance.

But the saddest fact of all is, I'm right their with the disillusioned, and I'll still be 'playing' tomorrow. ;)

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And I find the suggestion that teams have worked out how I play now as very convenient, because after my first season I haven't a clue how any of the teams play, or how to counter them with perfect results. I just play what has worked before. And if they have 'worked out' my strategy, how exactly has it done that, because that certainly sounds like an unfair advantage to me.

Lets say for example that you are a newly promoted team in the EPL and most opposition will see you as cannon fodder but that is often not the case and the reason many people over achieve in the first season after promotion. The next year after finishing, lets say, seventh teams are aware that you are a side capable of punishing them if they all out attack you. This means they will be more conservative and keep more men behind the ball. If you keep exactly the same tactic for both seasons then season 2 will quite possibly see you struggling. I believe this is one of the reasons people come on here saying "I can beat the big teams but the smaller teams keep beating me with one shot"

Also teams should be scouting you (not sure if they do) as you should be scouting them. If you did scout them you should know roughly how they are going to approach the game, where most of their goals come from, how they concede goals and even formations they play well/poorly against. Perhaps look at when they played an opponent you consider equal to yourself and see how they set up.

At least you haven't spat your dummy out though and claimed you will never play again like some do. I never believe them either.:p

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In 4 games the computer has had 15 shots on target against me and 10 of those have gone in.

Been a constant problem in all my saves on FM12, never had this issue in previous FM's.

Ive tried CA tactics, Controlling tactics, attacking tactics, ive tried it all. CPU always finishes much better than i ever could. My players seem to think goal scoring opportunities are actually more of an opportunity to stress me out by kicking the ball near the corner flag or straight down the goalies throat.

Regardless of tactics in RL a team scoring every or almost every shot they have on target is relatively rare. However i refuse to accept that it is some issue that is inbuilt within the game, there is no doubt that something i am doing (or not doing) is causing this, i have just run out of ideas on how to fix it

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In 4 games the computer has had 15 shots on target against me and 10 of those have gone in.

Been a constant problem in all my saves on FM12, never had this issue in previous FM's.

Ive tried CA tactics, Controlling tactics, attacking tactics, ive tried it all. CPU always finishes much better than i ever could. My players seem to think goal scoring opportunities are actually more of an opportunity to stress me out by kicking the ball near the corner flag or straight down the goalies throat.

Regardless of tactics in RL a team scoring every or almost every shot they have on target is relatively rare. However i refuse to accept that it is some issue that is inbuilt within the game, there is no doubt that something i am doing (or not doing) is causing this, i have just run out of ideas on how to fix it

I expect your going to say "of course I have" but have you tried criticising your keeper or defenders form or even dropping them for other players. I have never had a keeper disagree with me when I have done this and if I think he is conceding too easily I will always criticise then drop. Also making sure you have enough players staying back at set pieces as the counters from these can be very dangerous. If you concede too often from set pieces then check you have enough aerial abilty in your team or work on defending set pieces in match prep.

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No luck in play in my game, I go attacking 4 goals out of 30 shots, defensive and 3 goals from 4 shots against barca in the ch. league semis. Football can be beautiful that way. It goes both ways

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If you rephrase the question, there's a chance of you working out the answer. I suggest:

"Why am I so much worse at finishing than the AI?"

You might then get somewhere.

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So since this is a highly re-occuring thread there are two observations that needs to be put into words:

A. It is too easy creating 20+ shots in a game for us

B. It is too easy for the AI to score on the few chances they get

Looking at A, it is clear that since this is the case AI defending is generally bad and thus creating a tactic that generates that many chances is nothing to be excited about. Considering B, and not the least how those goals actually come by: 30-yarders, penalties out of nowhere, corner kicks out of nowhere, stupid own-goals, indirect free kicks passed from the free-kick taker to a random bystander who loses the ball, the lurk-outside-the-area guy trying to dribble his way through all the other players after a corner, guy told not to hold up the ball holding up the ball etc etc, SI is clearly doing its best to frustrate the customers. Why is the ME producing so many stupid defensive mistakes compared to good attacking football against good defending and their striker getting just that toe on the ball to score? It seems like SI don't understand that when a user dominates possession, creates many CCCs and prevents largely everything the opposing AI team throws at them, then there will be a lot of head-scratching when this is regularly leads to losses - "what am I doing wrong?" is the question these users ask themselves, and the answer, looking at the available tools in the game, is -nothing-.

So they come here and complain, and no-one tells them the truth: you are creating too many chances, and you're dominating too much! Just think about it: you are not going to score 30 goals in a match, and thus it is only logical that it is pointless creating 30 shots at goal. You won't score 15 either, but on the other hand a good conversion rate is 1 of 3, and a decent conversion rate is 1 of 5, so if you create 15 good shots at goal scoring 3-5 goals that's ok. However, this means there is no real difference between 15 sot and 9 sot in terms of goalscoring (the difference is in the quality of those shots, not the amount). All you know is that you're likely to need 3 sot to win a game given that you don't concede. Once shots on target increases beyond 10, the conversion rate is going to drop like a rock. This means that if you have 3 sot in the first 10 minutes of the game, you can assume that if this continues for the rest of the match you are going to have 27 shots on target by the end of the match. That's a virtual guarantee for complete frustration because you are not going to win 9-0, and I'd say if you haven't scored by the time conversion rate exceeds 1/5 you may as well assume that you're not going to score at all since by that time their keeper is going to have his match of the season.

The same could be said about possession. If you have the ball 80% of the time, this means the opponent is unlikely to ever keep it farther out than their own third, so there will be no space. Reduce that to 55-60% and they will at least spread out far enough for you to do something worthwhile with the ball once you win it back.

This doesn't mean it is impossible to win when you have 15 sot and 70% possession, but you will experience what the OP and countless others have been annoyed with much more often.

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Last night I played a ECL game against our new favourite 'new money' team Anji. Having been 2-0 up, defending quite well, and threatening on the break, they got a goal back, and as I approach the 89th min, having already reset my formation to 4411 (which I rarely do, but just wanted to see out the game, and hold the lead), as soon I as changed my time wasting to very high (89 min), they scored a header from a throw-in (one of their defs in the box, perfect last min cross, perfect unstoppable header). It was a good goal, but too perfect and at the right time. Something stank in suburbia.

So I decided to save the draw (not a bad result away from home), but since it was my last game of the night yesterday, I thought I test some my ideas against a team with good players, and I would assume, a low rep, and see if I could keep them out. I also wanted to see how many chances they miss too.

I think I have played around 6 games against them now, and the majority of the results have been draws, but not only can I not prevent them from scoring, even if I score a goal they reply immediately; corner; long shot, or the kinda of chance you could score with your backside (I wish I had those chances more often).

Now, I am not saying either team deserves what scoreline it finishes, it is just starting to come across as scripted, and as much I as know the this is not how the ME works, I cannot help what I am seeing. I do urge people whom have played an awkward team, that seem to score from anywhere, particularly when they need a goal, to play them again, and see how often it occurs. It is too spooky for words.

As I mentioned earlier, I really thought something had gone wrong with my defending, but upon watching these games now, my defending is fine, it is just they wil grab a goal from anywhere when required. Now I know there is no bias going on here, so why I am getting the same results, against the same team? No matter how many goals I score, they equalise (and twice have gone on to win ). After so many test games, it's now beginning to smell funny.

And there aren't lots of chances (around 15 shots at the most, and a couple of CCC for either side), and they have yet to loose, and they always score. And I have missed some glaring chances.

Incidentally, I also played Norwich in two games recently, cup and league, I won both games 3-2, with different players, and all their goals where from dead balls (corners, pens). I only conceded 10 goals in 38 league games in my first season. I have already conceded 4 goals from 6 games this season.

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Looking at A, it is clear that since this is the case AI defending is generally bad and thus creating a tactic that generates that many chances is nothing to be excited about. Considering B, and not the least how those goals actually come by: 30-yarders, penalties out of nowhere, corner kicks out of nowhere, stupid own-goals, indirect free kicks passed from the free-kick taker to a random bystander who loses the ball, the lurk-outside-the-area guy trying to dribble his way through all the other players after a corner, guy told not to hold up the ball holding up the ball etc etc,

These kinds of goals are very frustrating, but what's more frustrating that regular SI apologizers always find an excuse or two for every single stupidity the game throws at you. Users who complain about it are always patronized and that just increases the general frustration. When a user regularly concedes from ridiculous and completely nonsensical chain of events and get told "it's your tactics" of course he's going to be even more annoyed.

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I do wish to emphasize that opponents also miss ridiculous chances too, but they don't require as many chances (and yet not every CCC that the game registers is a true CCC) because it doesn't seem to matter what kinda chance they take, and their goals do come from nowhere, particularly when they need one. And I am seeing it time and again in my 2nd season.

We seem to be witnessing the more chances you seem to create on FM, the more you miss, which is extremely negative, and doesn't give you a sense of achievement in that whatever you doing is working - you are creating good quality chances in high numbers, and converting the majority. I was very capable of this in my 1st season. Creating chances seems to only lead you in a false sense of security. And I always felt a good defensive structure usually led to quality chances and goals, but even those have dried up now.

It is like the kinda things you here on TV football shows like, 'well at least we're creating the chances to miss.' I think that has been taken too far by FM.

I really think the analysis of how many chances you create is a fallacy - creating good quality chances shouldn't make you still believe you're not going to score. It should give you confidence that you're on top and a goal is coming. And if your restricting your opponents to poor quality chances, yet they are still scoring, it isn't good for our sense of understanding, or our health. What's the point of looking proudly at how many great chances you create if you're missing most of them? You wind up feeling a sense of shame even though no one is watching!

And the 'player under pressure' reason just doesn't cut it for me, otherwise players with low reps, whom people have never heard of would never score in cup finals and big games. If my more experienced player misses a sitter, and a player with lesser ability, and with a lower rep, can go up the other end and convert any chance, it kinda contradicts that excuse. Why didn't their player bottle it? Why was my player under more pressure? And how decides this? These hidden, uncontrollable acts of FM will always be bitterly described as bias, even when you pull off a win against a bigger club.

Anyways, just to keep you updated, after finally playing around a dozen games against Anzi, I finally managed to keep a clean sheet, but the irony was, my captain was stretchered off! I think I could play them until doomsday before I manage to outscore them.

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Just to reinforce this is problem rife across the board on FM12, here are two results from the same day on my save.

77F96C549AD69688F78A872F4BDB86ACD6527360

3BA0DDB5845DF855C0A6692663ED9C294231EDCD

Bear in mind these are AI teams, too. It seems the underdog has the balance of power which explains why I did so well in my first season. So does experience mean nothing anymore?

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These kinds of threads are so frustrating.

Let's first deal with the misinformation.

So they come here and complain, and no-one tells them the truth: you are creating too many chances, and you're dominating too much! Just think about it: you are not going to score 30 goals in a match, and thus it is only logical that it is pointless creating 30 shots at goal. You won't score 15 either, but on the other hand a good conversion rate is 1 of 3, and a decent conversion rate is 1 of 5, so if you create 15 good shots at goal scoring 3-5 goals that's ok. However, this means there is no real difference between 15 sot and 9 sot in terms of goalscoring (the difference is in the quality of those shots, not the amount). All you know is that you're likely to need 3 sot to win a game given that you don't concede. Once shots on target increases beyond 10, the conversion rate is going to drop like a rock. This means that if you have 3 sot in the first 10 minutes of the game, you can assume that if this continues for the rest of the match you are going to have 27 shots on target by the end of the match. That's a virtual guarantee for complete frustration because you are not going to win 9-0, and I'd say if you haven't scored by the time conversion rate exceeds 1/5 you may as well assume that you're not going to score at all since by that time their keeper is going to have his match of the season.

The average conversion rate is circa 1 in 8 to 1 in 9. 1 in 3 to 1 in 5 is pure fantasy, in FM and in reality. If you are getting a better conversion rate than 1 in 6 (which is perfectly possible in FM, less so in real life) you are doing massively, massively well. The AI is totally incapable of achieving such a rate. If you are doing worse than 1 in 8, then something is wrong with your approach to the game.

If you get 27 shots, you should expect to score between 3 and 3.5 goals with an average conversion rate. Any worse and you are probably doing something wrong. Any better and you are probably doing something right. There are no mechanisms that artificially prevent you scoring after you've missed a number of shots (although your FC may start lacking in confidence and begin to snatch shots). There are always tactical and motivational methods to help you break down that stubborn defence. Of course, if you assume you'll fail and do nothing, guess what is most likely to happen?

Last night I played a ECL game against our new favourite 'new money' team Anji. Having been 2-0 up, defending quite well, and threatening on the break, they got a goal back, and as I approach the 89th min, having already reset my formation to 4411 (which I rarely do, but just wanted to see out the game, and hold the lead), as soon I as changed my time wasting to very high (89 min), they scored a header from a throw-in (one of their defs in the box, perfect last min cross, perfect unstoppable header). It was a good goal, but too perfect and at the right time. Something stank in suburbia.

Just because you switched mentality and increased time wasting doesn't automatically result in it being impossible to score against you. **** happens. Rather than assume it is the game or SI out to get you, take it on the chin, learn from it, work out how to better stop it happening and move on.

So I decided to save the draw (not a bad result away from home), but since it was my last game of the night yesterday, I thought I test some my ideas against a team with good players, and I would assume, a low rep, and see if I could keep them out. I also wanted to see how many chances they miss too.

I think I have played around 6 games against them now, and the majority of the results have been draws, but not only can I not prevent them from scoring, even if I score a goal they reply immediately; corner; long shot, or the kinda of chance you could score with your backside (I wish I had those chances more often).

Now, I am not saying either team deserves what scoreline it finishes, it is just starting to come across as scripted, and as much I as know the this is not how the ME works, I cannot help what I am seeing. I do urge people whom have played an awkward team, that seem to score from anywhere, particularly when they need a goal, to play them again, and see how often it occurs. It is too spooky for words.

All this is proving is that you don't know how to win the game. In every case this has happened, if the save is uploaded, other forum users have won the game straight off the bat. If you are constantly conceding soft goals, it is something you are doing, not a script in the game forcing it on you. Stop looking for things that aren't there and spend more time working out how to win tight matches.

And the 'player under pressure' reason just doesn't cut it for me, otherwise players with low reps, whom people have never heard of would never score in cup finals and big games. If my more experienced player misses a sitter, and a player with lesser ability, and with a lower rep, can go up the other end and convert any chance, it kinda contradicts that excuse. Why didn't their player bottle it? Why was my player under more pressure? And how decides this? These hidden, uncontrollable acts of FM will always be bitterly described as bias, even when you pull off a win against a bigger club.

Low reputation does not equal 'unable to play in pressure matches'. Totally different things. You can have a very average player who regularly pulls out all the stops in big games and a very good player who bottles them, failing to live up to his ability or reputation.

Anyways, just to keep you updated, after finally playing around a dozen games against Anzi, I finally managed to keep a clean sheet, but the irony was, my captain was stretchered off! I think I could play them until doomsday before I manage to outscore them.

How's that irony?

Let's go to Occam's Razor and state the raw truth. It is easier to prevent than score a goal (despite the defending on FM being absolutely horrible!!). Once you accept that, you might be able to sort things out.

If you are managing a team that struggles to convert, the fault is yours. You might be creating too many chances that fall to a certain player, meaning if he has an off day, you have no second method of scoring. You might be playing too high tempo a game against a deep, packed defence, meaning chances are hurried and snatched. You might be playing too narrow and slow, meaning it is too easy to crowd your players out before they shoot. You might be unable to keep your players properly relaxed, confident or fired up. They are the commonest four reasons, although it could be something else.

Likewise, you might be conceding soft goals for many reasons. If they tend to be long shots, it is probably down to having a lightly manned midfield, deep d-line and very low or very high closing down (which, with only very few midfielders, will both result in a lot of space). If you struggle against the counter, you probably push too many players up the pitch, which will leave you badly exposed at least a couple of times a match. If you struggle from set pieces, you probably have some bad set piece settings.

I can't make people learn how to play. I can only show you the door. If you open it, you'll get masses of help. However, until you have realistic expectations of match stats and stop believing the game is scripted, you will never, ever walk through it.

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These kinds of threads are so frustrating.

Let's first deal with the misinformation.

The average conversion rate is circa 1 in 8 to 1 in 9. 1 in 3 to 1 in 5 is pure fantasy, in FM and in reality. If you are getting a better conversion rate than 1 in 6 (which is perfectly possible in FM, less so in real life) you are doing massively, massively well. The AI is totally incapable of achieving such a rate. If you are doing worse than 1 in 8, then something is wrong with your approach to the game.

If you get 27 shots, you should expect to score between 3 and 3.5 goals with an average conversion rate. Any worse and you are probably doing something wrong. Any better and you are probably doing something right. There are no mechanisms that artificially prevent you scoring after you've missed a number of shots (although your FC may start lacking in confidence and begin to snatch shots). There are always tactical and motivational methods to help you break down that stubborn defence. Of course, if you assume you'll fail and do nothing, guess what is most likely to happen?

I was talking about 1 of 3 to 1 of 5 shots on target, not shots. Iirc you boasted a conversion ratio of slightly over three sot per goal in another thread. If you meant shots on target as well, I must say that you operate with terrible conversion rates. 1 goal from 8 or 9 shots on target (or more specifically, "good shots" was the term I used) is awful and would have managers fired and strikers dropped if happening in a top club.

Besides, the conversion ratio of the AI as shown and discussed at length in this and many other threads is precisely 1 goal per 1 shot. I have asked you and others this question many times before, but never gotten a straight answer (for obvious reasons): how exactly is it a defensive problem to limit the opposition to one shot per match? How on earth can any team defend any better than that? By, as I proposed in the post you misread, letting them have some more possession and some more shots?

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The question is "what are you doing in the match that is causing this to happen?"

AI vs AI this rarely happens, so there has to be something that the human manager is doing that is effectively breaking the match engine and resulting in people seeing this sort of behaviour to extremes.

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I was talking about 1 of 3 to 1 of 5 shots on target, not shots. Iirc you boasted a conversion ratio of slightly over three sot per goal in another thread. If you meant shots on target as well, I must say that you operate with terrible conversion rates. 1 goal from 8 or 9 shots on target (or more specifically, "good shots" was the term I used) is awful and would have managers fired and strikers dropped if happening in a top club.

Besides, the conversion ratio of the AI as shown and discussed at length in this and many other threads is precisely 1 goal per 1 shot. I have asked you and others this question many times before, but never gotten a straight answer (for obvious reasons): how exactly is it a defensive problem to limit the opposition to one shot per match? How on earth can any team defend any better than that? By, as I proposed in the post you misread, letting them have some more possession and some more shots?

If you mean shots on target, you need to say shots on target, otherwise your post is nonsensical. Given you referred to 30 shots in a match, everyone is going to interpret that as total shots. I would agree that you should score from circa 1 in every 3-5 shots on target.

As for your second paragraph, of course it is a good thing to restrict the opposition to as few as shots as possible. However, if they score from nearly all of their shots, the restriction of total shots isn't actually helping very much, is it? Ultimately, the only thing that matters is the scoreline. If you consistently experience an extremely high conversion rate against you, then guess what. It is something you are doing, not the game being out to get you, rubber banding or any such nonsense.

How do I know? Because I don't experience it, and never have. I would contend that an awful lot of other forum members haven't either. All we can conclude from the evidence thus far is that there are certain ways of playing FM that result in the following:

1: High possession and shot creation

2: Low conversion rates for

3: High conversion rates against

As there are ways of playing that equally don't result in the above, then we must conclude that the user is the variable. Consequently, the user needs to change.

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I used to, circa FM2007/08 ish iirc, and very much so in FML (where once I worked it out I used to use it against people to rather comedic effect).

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If you mean shots on target, you need to say shots on target, otherwise your post is nonsensical. Given you referred to 30 shots in a match, everyone is going to interpret that as total shots. I would agree that you should score from circa 1 in every 3-5 shots on target.

As for your second paragraph, of course it is a good thing to restrict the opposition to as few as shots as possible. However, if they score from nearly all of their shots, the restriction of total shots isn't actually helping very much, is it? Ultimately, the only thing that matters is the scoreline. If you consistently experience an extremely high conversion rate against you, then guess what. It is something you are doing, not the game being out to get you, rubber banding or any such nonsense.

How do I know? Because I don't experience it, and never have. I would contend that an awful lot of other forum members haven't either. All we can conclude from the evidence thus far is that there are certain ways of playing FM that result in the following:

1: High possession and shot creation

2: Low conversion rates for

3: High conversion rates against

As there are ways of playing that equally don't result in the above, then we must conclude that the user is the variable. Consequently, the user needs to change.

I mentioned "shot on target/sot" 8 times in total in the passage you quoted.

Yes I don't experience it either but a friend of mine does (or did, before scrapping the tactic he used, which became useless after 12.2). I have never proposed it is not a tactical issue, what I am concerned about is that it requires intricate and intimate knowledge of how the game works as well as thousands of hours of experience to look beyond the numbers given us by the game. How do you know that you do something right tactically? You create many chances, score many goals, prevent chances against you and regularly keep the goal clean. So everything is fine and you move on to the next season expecting improvement because you have just signed a few strong players making your team better than last year. Then you struggle mid-table because you lose 1-0 after creating many chances and preventing all but one shot against. Repeatedly.

Now you know why this is happening, but there are no indications in the game whatsoever that something's wrong! The only thing they see is that where their mediocre strikers scored leisurely last year, their quality strikers scores none this year. 20-30 hours of gameplay for what? Then they come on here asking what is going on, and you and friends must tell them that the chances their strikers waste are not actually good chances based on some almost invisible nuance in the position of the players in a screenshot or video, and that the shots they conceded were actually easy for some similar reason.

So your tone and your advice is not very helpful in this thread. Yes, there is no rubber-banding fine fine! Just begin realizing that the reason people blame the game and not themselves is that they are not actually given information indicating that they are doing anything wrong, and so the logical conclusion is that the game sabotages them on purpose. Another thing you need to keep in mind is that your calm, detached knowledge that these things aren't programmed into the game and thus any problem is your own doing is a result of both countless hours playing the game -and- (probably) a mind-set of patience and focus that most people don't have. So telling them that they are doing something wrong isn't easing their frustrations, to put it that way. They probably know that, but why use so many words to explain that the fundamental thing to understand is that many shots is not necessarily good?

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I mentioned "shot on target/sot" 8 times in total in the passage you quoted.

Yes I don't experience it either but a friend of mine does (or did, before scrapping the tactic he used, which became useless after 12.2). I have never proposed it is not a tactical issue, what I am concerned about is that it requires intricate and intimate knowledge of how the game works as well as thousands of hours of experience to look beyond the numbers given us by the game. How do you know that you do something right tactically? You create many chances, score many goals, prevent chances against you and regularly keep the goal clean. So everything is fine and you move on to the next season expecting improvement because you have just signed a few strong players making your team better than last year. Then you struggle mid-table because you lose 1-0 after creating many chances and preventing all but one shot against. Repeatedly.

Now you know why this is happening, but there are no indications in the game whatsoever that something's wrong! The only thing they see is that where their mediocre strikers scored leisurely last year, their quality strikers scores none this year. 20-30 hours of gameplay for what? Then they come on here asking what is going on, and you and friends must tell them that the chances their strikers waste are not actually good chances based on some almost invisible nuance in the position of the players in a screenshot or video, and that the shots they conceded were actually easy for some similar reason.

So your tone and your advice is not very helpful in this thread. Yes, there is no rubber-banding fine fine! Just begin realizing that the reason people blame the game and not themselves is that they are not actually given information indicating that they are doing anything wrong, and so the logical conclusion is that the game sabotages them on purpose. Another thing you need to keep in mind is that your calm, detached knowledge that these things aren't programmed into the game and thus any problem is your own doing is a result of both countless hours playing the game -and- (probably) a mind-set of patience and focus that most people don't have. So telling them that they are doing something wrong isn't easing their frustrations, to put it that way. They probably know that, but why use so many words to explain that the fundamental thing to understand is that many shots is not necessarily good?

All well and good, but it is constantly the same small group of forum users that post these complaints. A couple of handfuls at best. It is not like they haven't read all the answers hundreds of time before. They have, and been given advice on which threads to read, break downs of their tactics, analysis of their matches, stats illustrating that their own experience is subjective etc, etc. They never, ever listen.

As mods, the problem we have is managing threads like this one. If we let them continue without combatting the misinformation, then people begin to think the game works in a completely different way than it does. For example, despite multiple attempts to explain to people how the ME works, threads getting it 100% wrong still appear. People still complain of rubber banding and scripting. People still think we are blindly defending SI or lying. Or, in the OP:

Not going to go into detail but we all know this is the case, we see it all the time, the AI with barely any shots and scoring whereas we take 20 and don't score.

This statement is biased and based on subjective experience, yet is being framed as an objective analysis of the experience all of us have. It it quite simply not true. Many users have far better shot conversion ratios than the AI can ever achieve, about which a fair amount has been written. If users read the above and believe it is true, then this type of thread actively hurts their playing experience, as they feel cheated before they even start.

Ultimately, if this small group of people expended the same time and energy reading threads explaining the game as they did complaining about it, everyone's life would be so much easier.

That's not to say that you don't have some good points regarding the paucity of in-game feedback. I agree that it could be better. However, there is a fine balance between just enough information and spoon-feeding the user. If the latter happens, then I'd argue it is worse than not having quite enough info. SI also haven't helped themselves with the liberal interpretation of CCCs, which means users actually have to have a very subjective eye in recognising which chances genuinely are good ones.

I shouldn't have to explain anything about shots. The only thing that matters is scoreline. If you can't win, then, as the manager, it is your job to work out why. There's no point in continuing to create loads of chances and losing in the blind hope it will suddenly stop happening. My experience on these forums suggest that most managers either do blindly hope or make random, panicky tactical changes that often make things worse. As always, my advice is read TT&F and the other stickied posts in the tactical forum. Yes, they are long, but immersing yourself in them makes FM a far richer experience, reducing frustration by helping users understand what to do and when to do it. You can also open a thread asking for advice regarding your tactics, which will get lots of feedback. However, too many people just rant and rave in GD, which gets them nowhere.

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All well and good, but it is constantly the same small group of forum users that post these complaints. A couple of handfuls at best. It is not like they haven't read all the answers hundreds of time before. They have, and been given advice on which threads to read, break downs of their tactics, analysis of their matches, stats illustrating that their own experience is subjective etc, etc. They never, ever listen.
... Or the issue is that users simply shouldn't need to rely on huge, giant, external threads to solve what appears to be a simple issue.

I believe that if the game were perfect, this forum would never need to exist for help (it would purely be for people who want to learn in great detail, or for social purposes).

As always, my advice is read TT&F and the other stickied posts in the tactical forum. Yes, they are long, but immersing yourself in them makes FM a far richer experience, reducing frustration by helping users understand what to do and when to do it. You can also open a thread asking for advice regarding your tactics, which will get lots of feedback. However, too many people just rant and rave in GD, which gets them nowhere.

Not everyone wants to "learn" in any great detail, which turns the game into a chore. Some users just want to have fun. As a result, telling them to read long threads results in a poorer game experience. Not everyone is like you.

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So in continuing my evolution to understand why we miss chances, my next game was away at Stoke. Stoke are still a hard team to beat, and I struggled to beat them in the FA Cup final in my 1st season. I have now decided that watching full games doesn't aid my understanding in what I am doing incorrectly.

So I starting the game with my usual tactics in Key mode. Having gone 2-0 up, I decided to lower my individual mentalities to the default CA settings, even for my 3 forward players (I been playing a 4213 CA system with great results in my 1st season, but I usually have my front 3 with high attacking mentalities), to see if missing chances is just a simple case of it is all in their heads. I won 6-0 (8 SOT)! My biggest victory on FM12!

Was this my eureka moment? Was I missing so many guilt edge chances because the opposite affect has a better outcome (normal mentality - 6 clicks), which paradoxically makes sense in FM when the most obvious reasons aren't necessarily the answer. Is the best form of attack defence on FM?

I suppose the use of the term 'mentality' is very wrong. Could this mean many things like maybe impatience, speed of thought, and rashness? If so surely it should be either described better in the TC or renamed. In fact I would go as far to suggest the TC should tell players the pros and cons of various selections, so we can make a more proactive or educated guess so we can learn if we are doing something incorrectly, rather than keep being told we are. How on Earth is a novice supposed to grasp that an attacking Mentality can have an adverse effect on a strikers ability to score goals? I have been playing for six years, and I am still none the wiser.

So next up Man City, my EPL nemesis. I'm at home, but I would be quite happy with a draw. Draw first game, 1-1, Aguero with a blistering 25 yrd striker (yes, another long shot). Had plenty of decent chances, but the City keeper was almost impassable. Saved game and kept.

Again this was my last game of the night yesterday, so I decided to play it again this morning, you to see if the Stoke result was a fluke. Won 2-1, 2 players injured, 1 out for two months (pleasure and pain again).

Reloaded, 1-1 again, 1 player injured this time, and I hit the post 5 times! Incidentally, the guilty player that hit the woodwork the most was my striker, and I obviously thought he was having 'an off day'. But I persevered, and he scored the equaliser in the last minute. I have been advised that if a player having 'an off day' is better off being subbed, yet he became the hero. Had I subbed him, would I have lost?

Now, it has to be said that a draw vs. City is still an acceptable result, but I am gathering that the ME gives us clues to what is occurring. My late scorer in the 3rd game may have been missing chances, including hitting the post twice but was he having poor game? Is hitting the post a indication that the player is having an off day, or was he just 'unlucky' and he will eventually get his reward, which he did.

But the fact I drew 2, and won 1 (with the punishment of a long term injury to boot), we are rarely rewarded even when we win. I win convincingly at Stoke, probably one of the hardest teams to beat, with a more defensive mentality, and even though I take this idea into a game with an even more difficult team, sods law rears it's ugly head again, and missed chances accumulate again.

It terms of how we all play the game, of course when results don't go our way, we have done something wrong, or just not tried something that might have worked. So how do we learn this on FM? I suppose all we can do is keep changing things. But this is what confuses me. The Match Prep insructs me to choose 3 systems to learn. What is the point of learning tactics, if we have to persistently change them to suit opponents?

Man Utd have been playing the same system for over 20 yrs (back four, DM/CM/DLPM, Wingers, DLF, poacher), yet not many teams have worked them out, and they continue to be successful. Why? Because IRL continuity is the key. Learning to play a specific way and training hard is what works. If change is the only way to manage in FM, then ppl will continue to gripe, because if the game shows them over a season something works, then suddenly shows you it doesn't (by conceding goals from set pieces, pens, and corners all of a sudden), the emotion you feel is deceit.

All this being said, the irony is, on a psychological level, I can kinda understand why a lower mentality would enable a striker to choose his shots better, but should we require to have an understanding of psychological to play a game. And although I was elated when I thought I was getting somewhere after the Stoke result, missing chances against Man City has just brought my back down to Earth with a bump!

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... Or the issue is that users simply shouldn't need to rely on huge, giant, external threads to solve what appears to be a simple issue.

I believe that if the game were perfect, this forum would never need to exist for help (it would purely be for people who want to learn in great detail, or for social purposes).

Not everyone wants to "learn" in any great detail, which turns the game into a chore. Some users just want to have fun. As a result, telling them to read long threads results in a poorer game experience. Not everyone is like you.

I agree that people shouldn't need to read a small book to play the game, but to be fair those threads are referred to when there appears to be a lack of tactical insight, either in spotting what's going wrong or taking the right approach to fixing it, which they help provide. The game can't teach the user football tactics. Expecting it to is unreasonable. Not requiring any wouldn't make it much of an FM game. As long as you can fail there will be frustration but with no room to fail there's no challenge. I really wish tools like the assistant feedback widget were better; I think that's the sort of thing that could potentially bridge the gap here between users with different expectations/preexisting knowledge.

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... Or the issue is that users simply shouldn't need to rely on huge, giant, external threads to solve what appears to be a simple issue.

I believe that if the game were perfect, this forum would never need to exist for help (it would purely be for people who want to learn in great detail, or for social purposes).

Not everyone wants to "learn" in any great detail, which turns the game into a chore. Some users just want to have fun. As a result, telling them to read long threads results in a poorer game experience. Not everyone is like you.

Yet people will spend hours moaning and posting threads about the same subject rather than taking 5 minutes to learn. It would take people a lot quicker to read a thread than post in the same one moaning all day long.

I agree that people shouldn't need to read a small book to play the game, but to be fair those threads are referred to when there appears to be a lack of tactical insight, either in spotting what's going wrong or taking the right approach to fixing it, which they help provide.

Couldn't have put that better myself.

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... Or the issue is that users simply shouldn't need to rely on huge, giant, external threads to solve what appears to be a simple issue.

I believe that if the game were perfect, this forum would never need to exist for help (it would purely be for people who want to learn in great detail, or for social purposes).

Not everyone wants to "learn" in any great detail, which turns the game into a chore. Some users just want to have fun. As a result, telling them to read long threads results in a poorer game experience. Not everyone is like you.

Then they are playing the wrong game. Learning how to play Civ is a chore unless your really into the game, has that also failed its customer base?

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I dunno whether I speak for many, but in my case, I suffer from a neurological disease, meaning my reading and learning abilities aren't at their best anymore, which is why I try to learn by trial and error, because I can only recall recent events. This is the main reason I rarely came to the forum and it is obviously quite difficult and embarrassing to admit mental impairment. Just writing these post takes a good while to make sure they sound legible (good old Google Chrome).

But obviously I would hope a game wouldn't discriminate from disabled gamers whom are looking to keep brain activity at a premium, and again in my case, to hold off further deterioration. Basically, I cannot read and retain information over long periods....I forget.

Maybe this handicap isn't best for a game like FM, but if I know anything, I know football. I understand how tactics create things in a match environment, which is why I have been successful on previous versions of FM (and even in my 1st FM12 season). But the game denies continuity. It doesn't allow a team to play the same way successfully, no matter how clever your tactic is.

I believe now, after a successful first season, my defence is looking shaky not because I am playing poorly, but because I seem to concede more goals for set pieces and from distance, even though I kept these to a minimum in the previous season. Now how does the AI know this is probably the only way to score goals against my system? Is it because the AI can't have a successful system over a long periods any more, so somehow teams against you learn to shoot from distance more often to create more long range chances and set pieces (corners)?

But to the layman like myself, the AI understanding how I play is a unfair advantage, because no matter how often I see a team playing against me, I haven't a clue how they're playing. And what I don't understand is why my players are missing chances that they scored with aplomb the season before? What has the AI done against me to inhibit scoring decent chances? And how does the AI decide that a player should miss a simple chance because he bottled it due to it being a big game (it seem every game I play lately is a big game, because they're all bottling it)? These AI decisions are completely out of a gamer's control, and by just making decisions against the player is a bias, which ever way you paint it, not because it occurs now and again, but because it is a recurring problem, clearly for many different gamers.

Like I said earlier, Man Utd have been so successful because they play the same way. Continuity should be key to success FM, and not failure.

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Maybe this handicap isn't best for a game like FM, but if I know anything, I know football. I understand how tactics create things in a match environment, which is why I have been successful on previous versions of FM (and even in my 1st FM12 season). But the game denies continuity. It doesn't allow a team to play the same way successfully, no matter how clever your tactic is.

Yes it does!! I use 1 formation, 4-4-2, same set up for almost every game bar little changes here and there and usually the changes are only when forced, you do not need an array of back up formations or set ups if your main tactic is solid and balanced.

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You can have loads of continuity. I can play the exact way I want all the time regardless of how good or bad my side is. I proved this in the Swansea saved I did in the tactics forum. I normally take a lot of teams over and just play 1 way constantly throughout my way up the leagues.

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The only reason i set up more than 1 formation is to stop the ass man moaning about it, i think in my current save i have used one of the other two maybe twice and both times was just out of interest more than anything, you dont have to be a tinkerman in this game.

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You don't need to change anything once you have created a good tactic. WWfan and other TC+shout proponents would disagree, but it is the truth to me at least. If anything, 12.2 just made my tactic better... If you create a tactic that has formational balance (an anchor man or two), and four of five players joining the attack so that at least five players stay back or in the clearance falldown area, you won't be punished by counter-attacks that much and you will get a lot of possession. Cramming six or more players into the area won't really let you score more goals, rather the opposite. The problem with 4-1-2-2-1 or 4-2-3-1 formations is that the main attacking outlet is the lone striker, and if he is out of form scoring goals will be difficult. It is a defensively sound tactic, though, and can be brought about to have a lot of possession. The problem with the usual 4-1-2-3 "exploit" tactic with three strikers is that in FM12 playing narrowly with it is actually handled well by the AI, so the tactic-creators use max width or thereabouts to avoid going into the trap in the middle, and the consequence is that there's a mile between each of the four defenders! Flat 442 with both midfielders told to not go forward also works fine, but 4-2-4 does this better, especially with the cm's moved to dmc.

Finding the right balance between mentality, passing style and tempo is also important. You don't want to go too quickly forward because then the shots will be rushed, easy to defend against. You don't want to be too defensive-minded and have too short passing either, because then you won't grab the counter-attacking opportunities that is presented to you.

Mentality: influences passing direction (forward/sideways), aggression, general risk-taking, back-tracking and urgency of scoring a goal

Passing style: influences the range or radius within which the player will look for passing options, but also the likelyhood of long passes I think

Tempo: influences player choice regarding the risk of a pass, the urgency of passing, so to speak. Slow tempo will make your attacks longer and more patient, while a quick tempo lets you get to the point of finishing at a much earlier point (while the opponent's defense is still unbalanced, hopefully).

The thing is that a slow tempo doesn't necessarily deprive you of good counter-attacking football! If you instruct your players to play patiently while still allowing them to look for passing options upfield, you will have both possession and counter-attacks. If you instruct your defenders/midfielders to aggressively work to win possession and then look primarily forward when passing to a 3-4 options up there who don't actually just run straight at goal and shoot no matter what, you will have a balanced tactic. This is why I always propose to set the mentality of the entire team to roughly the same level (around the first notch of attacking). I also recommend setting the tempo to around the Slow/Normal borderlands. The passing range should be set for each position according to how far that particular player needs to be able to look for a pass in order to have more than one option.

This is how I view tactics in FM11 and 12. Maybe everything isn't entirely correct, but it works for me and have for over a year now. Please note that doing this takes you out of TC+shout territory and into Classic tactics territory where you will be treated like a plague, and everyone in here will wear hazmat suits and try to cleanse you of your filth.

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In every game that I play - as Barcelona - the opposition score with practically their first shot on target. They might have 1 or 2 shots that miss, but the most of the time it's the first or second shot on target that they score with.

I was losing a game 2-0 when the opposition only had 1 shot on target (my keeper had scored an OG somehow?)

I concede roughly 30 - 40 goals a season because of this. But I score in the region of 100 - 120 goals per season.

But this isn't too unrealistic to real life Spanish League football. Last year Real Madrid and Barcelona scored 100 and 86 goals respectively, conceding 27 and 22 goals respectively. It's not too far off really.

All it means is that if I shored up my defence by not being so attacking and fluid I'd concede less goals. I'd have to go to "Control" and set my Center Midfielders to be Defensive Midfielders.

But that's not the Goal of this save. My main ambition is to get Lionel Messi as many goals as I can. He scored something like 94 goals in 46 games last season. I'm trying to get many many many more. I don't particularly care if I concede.

However, conversely when I am a lower side team I tend to score with my first shots on goal. And I like it. But conversely, when I'm a big team I hate when the opposition do that to me.

For instance, when I played as Santo Andre in Brazil 3rd division, I played a defensive counter attack system for about 5 years. I got back to back promotions and won Copa Liberatoras and the Brazil League and State using this tactic. When my team was better - I switched to a more attacking style of play. I stayed for another 4 years dominating the Brazil leagues, State and Copa.

But for 5 years - I was that team that scored 2 goals from 4 chances.

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Well, my 2c, for whatever they're worth:

It doesn't allow a team to play the same way successfully, no matter how clever your tactic is.

Football tactics don't really work like that though, do they? Teams usually have a base system that they stick to then make smaller changes match-to-match. Have you been watching Champions League this season? AC Milan is an easy example. The way they play Barcelona is nothing like how they play Cesena in the league. Mind, they retain the same system, but drop deeper/push higher, close down less/more, go for counters or patiently control the ball... You don't really need to do major tweaking in FM in my experience, but I'd advise you to give TC+shouts a shot (you appear to be using classic tactics?) since they let you easily adapt to different match situations at least.

I believe now, after a successful first season, my defence is looking shaky not because I am playing poorly, but because I seem to concede more goals for set pieces and from distance, even though I kept these to a minimum in the previous season. Now how does the AI know this is probably the only way to score goals against my system? Is it because the AI can't have a successful system over a long periods any more, so somehow teams against you learn to shoot from distance more often to create more long range chances and set pieces (corners)?

Long shots goals are probably just down to there being space there. Or, depending on the numbers we're talking about here, fluke. Are you dropping very deep? Closing down too little (or too much against skillful players)? Watch the situations and consider how the opponent finds the space to shoot. Some of them may just be really skillful efforts but if there's a trend you should be able to spot why it keeps happening. As for set pieces, again, what's the trend? Is it the same players of yours that lose the aerial challenges? A common recommendation here seems to be to take the DR/DL off far/near post duty, set them to man mark instead and put MR/ML on the posts, as to make the most of the defensive qualities of the DR/DL.

But to the layman like myself, the AI understanding how I play is a unfair advantage, because no matter how often I see a team playing against me, I haven't a clue how they're playing.

Really? I think checking out their formation and players before the game and then seeing the match highlights tends to say a lot. Well, enough. I find that more often than not there's a trend in how they exploit you, and if there isn't they're typically just a much better team. Trust your observations, I guess? :)

And what I don't understand is why my players are missing chances that they scored with aplomb the season before? What has the AI done against me to inhibit scoring decent chances? And how does the AI decide that a player should miss a simple chance because he bottled it due to it being a big game (it seem every game I play lately is a big game, because they're all bottling it)? These AI decisions are completely out of a gamer's control, and by just making decisions against the player is a bias, which ever way you paint it, not because it occurs now and again, but because it is a recurring problem, clearly for many different gamers.

We should probably separate the match engine from the opposition manager AI here, to avoid confusion. Your opponent can't affect your player's ability to put good chances away, just prevent them from happening in the first place. Nervousness, complacency, inconsistency, chances being harder than they look (wrong-footed, needs to turn...), etc are just guesses until we see the situations for ourselves as these are common reasons for missing that the game does simulate. As for how the match engine decides what's a miss and what's a goal, it's a fairly complicated equation using the factors I just mentioned, player attributes, and I'm sure others that I'm not aware of (player/pitch condition?). It's important to point out here that the match engine does not differentiate between a player-controlled team and an AI team. It's input A vs input B. You're at no (dis)advantage in terms of calculating chances and other match events.

Like I said earlier, Man Utd have been so successful because they play the same way. Continuity should be key to success FM, and not failure.

Tactical familiarity is important. I very much do suggest you stick to the same system (same "way to play"), but it is not true that ManU tries the exact same thing against every single opponent. Again, look at their Champions League games against big teams vs. league games against smaller teams. There's a difference in approach.

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Having gone 2-0 up, I decided to lower my individual mentalities to the default CA settings, even for my 3 forward players (I been playing a 4213 CA system with great results in my 1st season, but I usually have my front 3 with high attacking mentalities), to see if missing chances is just a simple case of it is all in their heads. I won 6-0 (8 SOT)! My biggest victory on FM12!

I suppose the use of the term 'mentality' is very wrong. Could this mean many things like maybe impatience, speed of thought, and rashness? If so surely it should be either described better in the TC or renamed. In fact I would go as far to suggest the TC should tell players the pros and cons of various selections, so we can make a more proactive or educated guess so we can learn if we are doing something incorrectly, rather than keep being told we are. How on Earth is a novice supposed to grasp that an attacking Mentality can have an adverse effect on a strikers ability to score goals? I have been playing for six years, and I am still none the wiser.

If you have big mentality gaps in your tea (i.e very low mentality defenders, very high mentality attackers), then that would pretty much explain your issue. The gaps will result in disjointed and incoherent performances. You have basically told different sections of the team that the match strategy is completely different (i.e. the defenders think the team is sitting back and soaking up pressure, whereas the attack thinks they should go forward whenever possible). Getting rid of the gaps will result in a far more coherent performance.

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I understand were you're coming from, wwfan, but I was unbeaten until the last game of my 1st season - 77 goals score, 11 conceded. If my system shouldn't work (fullstop), why was I made to believe it did? And the only reason I use this system was because it was also successful on FM11.

And it isn't that I am not scoring, it is that I am missing sooo many chances, that my players usually score. In fact I'd go as far to say they're scoring the harder chances and missing the sitters. It visibly comes across as the goals that go in are completely random (no matter how many there are or even how few chances you create, you won't know why you missed one, yet scored another, especially if they are very similar chances).

Like I said, if the TC describes the pros and cons of using varying systems and tactics, our tactical guesses would at least be more educated. I think the best way to think of it is, if there was no forum for anyone to give us the advice, how would we possibly know?

Is it easy for the advanced player to understand the cause and effect of what they do, but my person issue is, the only outcome I notice is the amount of quality chances I create, I how many I score. I changed my system on FM11 to combat the goals to shots ratio issue I have always felt was there, and like I said, I thought I was getting somewhere (creating fewer, better quality clear chances, whilst restricting my opponent's CCCs).

But one moment I am being told teams have worked my tactics out, so I am told I should change them, then I am told continuity is beneficial. So many opinions, but I find that only trail and error is the only thing that has helped me.

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I understand were you're coming from, wwfan, but I was unbeaten until the last game of my 1st season - 77 goals score, 11 conceded. If my system shouldn't work (fullstop), why was I made to believe it did? And the only reason I use this system was because it was also successful on FM11.

I've not said it doesn't work, full stop. However, if teams sit deep against it, the incoherence between the strata will result in play getting bogged down in the final third and shots being snatched. As your reputation will now be somewhat higher, this will be a more common occurrence.

However, against aggressive or balanced tactics, its ability to attack and defend relatively well without being changed will produce good results.

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If you have big mentality gaps in your tea (i.e very low mentality defenders, very high mentality attackers), then that would pretty much explain your issue. The gaps will result in disjointed and incoherent performances. You have basically told different sections of the team that the match strategy is completely different (i.e. the defenders think the team is sitting back and soaking up pressure, whereas the attack thinks they should go forward whenever possible). Getting rid of the gaps will result in a far more coherent performance.

It depends on the application. If you are playing a rigid, counterattacking system where defenders clear the ball and your attackers are ordered to take whatever chances they get, you'll want big mentality gaps. Of course, rigid, counterattacking systems are typically limited to very, very small teams playing very, very big teams and their downfall as a tactic for mid-to-top table clubs is the story of modern English football... and the general counterattacking mechanism (which maxes out mentalities) is active for all tactics anyway.

The problem with 4-1-2-2-1 or 4-2-3-1 formations is that the main attacking outlet is the lone striker, and if he is out of form scoring goals will be difficult. It is a defensively sound tactic, though, and can be brought about to have a lot of possession.

Well, it depends on if your 4231 is a traditional 451 or a more modern 4231. A modern 4231 will use a False Nine/False Ten combo where your wingers and AMC will actually be responsible for scoring most goals with late runs into the box as the opposite flank is overloaded by a deep-lying target man and overlapping fullback (as opposed to an exploit-style 4123 central through ball into a crowded penalty area where 3 pacy strikers are ready to be muscled into a false chance).

I'm currently playing a 41311 where mentalities and roles have been adjusted to roughly match the positional map of Joachim Low's 4231 (basically, low normal defense and holding midfield, high normal ML/MR wingers, mid normal striker, low attacking advanced midfielder) so goal droughts by my "forward" don't neuter the effectiveness of my team and are, in fact, partially expected.

EDIT: And relevantly, my tactic also uses the weakness of the narrow "exploit" against the AI. My wingers tight mark on defense and the DMCL, MCR combo funnels attacks down a predictable, centralized path. As a result, I set up my keeper to make lots of easy saves, raising his confidence (activating the dreaded so-called "super keeper" effect) and causing the opposition forwards to get frustrated and start snatching at long shots.

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THAt thing about long shots.

If I see someone taking long shots and I don't want that I go into their Player Instructions and dial down the long shots and up the through balls.

Well depending on the type of player. I'd be happy for Messi to run with the ball. I'd be more inclined to let Xavi work through balls and be more creative.

If long shots persist there must be reason, so I switch tactics to a wider berth or a narrower berth, see if that shakes things up and opens up for more passes.

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I think what is being misinterpreted is, in my case, not only is my usually sound defence is being exploited (using the same defensive structure as I used previously), but my usually prolific forwards are missing sitters. A perfect storm of events are making my system look fallible.

I did feel there were too many successful long shots converted on FM11, so I was used to it. But in my first FM12 season, you had to have decent long shot attributes to be successful, which is absolutely fair enough. Yet in my second season, it seems even an average player can consistently find the net.

The clear frustration is seeing a defensive structure that was once declared to be sound by the ME, conceding goals from distance and set pieces, yet I'm going up the other end and missing the all important CCC. It does feel that the ME has understood my system was to keep things tight, and score a couple of goals. But if my opponents can now score from anywhere, and knowing I average around 2 goals a game, my opponents seem to know exactly how many to score, and it is starting to look very suspect indeed.

I know the ME doesn't work like this, but I cannot help seeing what I am seeing. And trust me, the only reason why I am complaining it because it is now occurring in practically every game, even now I understand to decrease my attackers mentalities.

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