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The Addition of Dutch Lower Leagues (HELP thread)

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At which version are you? ;) 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Wolf_pd said:

At which version are you? ;) 

I have no clue really. :lol: I don't do version numbers: I save a new file each time with the step I'm at in the title, so I know just by looking at the file name where I was. :brock: The problem is that the Editor cannot validate the database, so I actually have to play the database myself to see if there's a problem somewhere. Just now, I've noticed there are a couple of stray B/Jong teams in the Derde Klasse because it was almost empty, so I'll be updating the previous post quickly and pray for the best. You'd think that setting a competition like the Derde Klasse to Extinct would automatically clear the teams in it since they can't compete in a competition that no longer exists, but nope.

I'm also unable to make major changes to the db myself since I speak the language and the information on certain things is pretty scarce. For example, there's missing history for the Eerste Klasse, so technically it doesn't make the database unplayable at all, but it's obviously not accurate. But I've seen too many Dutch projects like these face-planting themselves halfway through, I figured I could at least make it workable. Also, I don't have much interest in playing the vanilla FM database (as you could've guessed from the Yugo threads), so something like this is a bit more interesting to me, even though I can't really manoeuvrer inside the Editor all that well.

Also, most of the previous post aren't release versions, they're status update with full disclaimer but shhhh.

Edited by BMNJohn

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In a few seasons I think the Dutch football landscape will be a lot simpler when everybody plays on Saturday. It will probably mean a rearrangement of districts as well (although I haven't heard plans for it) as all those extra clubs coming over from the Sunday competition will add extra levels to the pyramid.

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24 minutes ago, Wolf_pd said:

In a few seasons I think the Dutch football landscape will be a lot simpler when everybody plays on Saturday. It will probably mean a rearrangement of districts as well (although I haven't heard plans for it) as all those extra clubs coming over from the Sunday competition will add extra levels to the pyramid.

Hopefully they'll do something about the Periods system. In one of my tests, I had this team just doing well enough in the third period to save their skin after doing absolutely nothing at all for 2/3rds of the season. It's fun... when you're not trying to avoid relegation yourself. :lol:

fm_2020-04-02_22-44-47.png

fm_2020-04-02_22-46-28.png

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The same way Heerenveen won promotion to the Eredivisie years back. They had one flashy Period, did nothing for the rest of the season and got promoted.

Btw, what happens if a team wins a Period, but also ends up in the relegation zone??? I mean, based on your screenshot, it is possible, despite being very unlikely.

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Posted (edited)
On 03/04/2020 at 19:45, Wolf_pd said:

The same way Heerenveen won promotion to the Eredivisie years back. They had one flashy Period, did nothing for the rest of the season and got promoted.

Btw, what happens if a team wins a Period, but also ends up in the relegation zone??? I mean, based on your screenshot, it is possible, despite being very unlikely.

As you said, the screenshot tells everything: you can't both be relegated and promoted; promotion takes prevalence over relegation. FM automatically skips one relegation spot. So yeah, if you win one period and play like a relegation candidate for the rest of the season, you're safe. FWIW, Woundenberg had the decency not to make a mockery of the league and finished 12th at the end of the season, just above the two relegation spots. To be honest, you really, really have to play like trash to end up in the relegation spots despite winning a period. IIRC, Woundenberg simply made the right transfers at the winter window to save their skin. The fact that the league has so few matches (only 26 matches!) and that beyond the top two teams everyone is pretty close together did help their case.

Additionally and I doubt I'm telling you anything new, if a team both wins a Period and gets into an automatic promotion spot, their Playoff ticket goes to the next best placed team in the league. In the picture above, KonHFC's ticket went to Huizen as the Haarlem side got into an automatic promotion spot by winning the league.

EDIT: On a different topic and for those who care, there are 653 teams in the "Lower Leagues", so it should be possible to create a Tweede Klasse (22 groups of 14 teams = 308 teams), but not a Derde Klasse without creating teams. That said, the Reputation level and player quality at those levels is... well, it's not the absolute worst I've ever played, but it's still pretty bad and not very enjoyable football. If you look at the database, the Reputation of the competitions and clubs in the Netherlands tanks really quickly when you go below the two vanilla leagues, and in the Eerste Klasse you already have many teams that have a Reputation at around 400 to 500, which is beyond Obscure. Also, the inflation in the number of players would tank performances pretty poorly is you don't remove leagues as you move up the pyramids. But hey, the Eerste Klasse still isn't the worst league I've ever managed in, so there's that! :lol:

Something quicker however would be to expand the Districtsbekers to include far more teams. For example, there are 171 teams in District Noord, but the Districtsbeker Noord only includes 63 teams. Even though it excludes every team from the Derde Divisie and above, there's still something to be done there to add a bit more density to the calendar at the lower levels. It would add about a round for the Districtsbeker Noord, most likely in March during the Intl. break.

Speaking of the Districtsbeker, you as a human do know that qualifying for the final also qualifies you for the KNVB Beker, but the AI does not know that. So there's two ways I can think of to force the AI to take it a bit more seriously: A) increase its Reputation so that they're enticed to play it for glory (which I have done, and it works) or B) force the AI to notice that you can qualify for the KNVB Beker by playing the Districtsbeker. For the latter solution, I think a really fancy thing to do would be to add Fate Actions to all of the Districtsbeker, saying that semi-final winners are qualified to the KNVB Beker, and ask the KNVB Beker to summon the two qualified teams from stage 0 of the Districtbekers. In my head it sounds nice, I'm not sure I can make it work without screwing up nor that it would solve the issue; but it's worth trying.

Edited by BMNJohn

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Posted (edited)

@Wolf_pd: Asking for advice... My save wasn't fun enough anymore, so I decided to toy with the Editor some more. :ackter:

I'm starting to cut the clubs in 6 Districts for the sake of the Districtsbeker. I think this repartition works in terms of the number of clubs. It's roughly equivalent; Districts West II and Oost have the bigger number of teams, and there are a few clubs in the db with no (correct) cities that I'll have to assign manually, but they shouldn't change the repartition too much. Obviously only clubs below the Derde Divisie (D4) play in it, so if certain regions are overrepresented in the upper echelons, trying to split the clubs roughly evenly means little. At least I tried!

The way to read this is that for example, South-Holland clubs who are located south of Rotterdam (including Rotterdam) are assigned to District Zuid I. Clubs from Gelderland south of Arnhem are in District Zuid II. It doesn't take huge effort to do so conditionally. For example, you'd search for: "Clubs", "Region is  Zuid-Holland", "Latitude is at most (insert Rotterdam's latitude)"; and edit everyone to have Districtsbeker Zuid I for Secondary Division.

864px-Map_provinces_Netherlands-en.svg.png

Edited by BMNJohn

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This means you don't take the saturday/sunday division?

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, Wolf_pd said:

This means you don't take the saturday/sunday division?

It's a different thing. "Regional Divisions" are their own category in the Editor, and you can add as many as you want. They were not used in the original project, and neither did I use them. That being said, each of the Eerste Klasse sub-divisions have boundaries for each cardinal point, as you can see below. None of the Tweede Klasse groups have boundaries, and to be frank my knowledge of Dutch geography ends there. That being said, the vanilla database has all divisions down to the Tweede Klasse filled with the correct teams, so you shouldn't have to worry too much about that. Some of the Derde Klasse groups are filled, some are not, but the Derde Klasse isn't being used anyway so all these teams are going to the Dutch Lower Leagues.

editor_2020-04-07_23-36-43.thumb.png.f9fcf2657937ccfe6278efd663e32418.png

Here, the District system is merely used to spread teams in roughly equivalent groups for the Districtsbeker, the Amateur cup that qualifies its finalists to the big boys' KNVB Beker. That's all there is to it. I guess you could use them as regional divisions on top of that. The short of it is that indeed, I wasted hours making groups for an amateur cup. :lol: It's not really meant to replicate reality, it's a practical tool inspired by reality.

Edited by BMNJohn

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Ah ok, that way. Hey, you have to do something during Corona.

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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, Wolf_pd said:

Ah ok, that way. Hey, you have to do something during Corona.

To be honest, that was the hardest part, as well as adding cities to clubs that were missing cities. For some reason, some clubs that are in a division were not assigned to given cities, so I had to track them down. Some of the lucky clubs that don't have a city now have at least a kit: the information was on Dutch Wikipedia, so I didn't have to search too far. :lol:  Now it's essentially porting the league and cup system over since it already works. You just need a second screen or second computer and it's pretty straightforward.

Ready for leagues.fmf

Edited by BMNJohn

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Why do you think I have a three screen setup? ;)

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8 hours ago, Wolf_pd said:

Why do you think I have a three screen setup? ;)

I put my laptop on a makeshift stand next to my desktop. :ackter:

Anyway, I'm done with the db down to the Eerste Klasse, and it validates better than my previous one. That being said and as I've tried to add the Tweede Klasse, I have a mismatch between promoted and relegated teams between the Eerste Klasse and the Tweede Klasse, I have trouble figuring out why. The promotion playoff rules for the Eerste Divisie and the inactive Tweede Divisie work since they were lifted straight from claassen's db. However, when I try to add the actual Tweede Divisie, I have too few Tweede Klasse teams promoting compared to the number of Eerste Klasse teams relegating. If you have time to take a look, here's the file.

Fate Actions EK-TK.fmf

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Posted (edited)

I've done the guess work on a sheet of paper. The end result is that I have no clue how Claassen got his rules to actually validate. It's not a diss on him, I really have no clue at all. Which also means I have no clue how my rules, that are lifted from his, actually validated either. His rules have three rounds in the playoffs between the Eerste Klasse and the Tweede Klasse. As I will explain, there literally is no need for three rounds in those playoffs.

For example, let's take the Zaterdag groups. There are 5 groups above that have 10 teams in it, two per group. Below, there are 10 groups with 30 teams in it, three per group. That's a total of 40 teams, 10 of which will play in the Eerste Klasse... And that's very dividable in two twice: 40 teams enter, 20 lose in the first round, another 10 lose in the next round and the 10 winners play in the Eerste Klasse. That's two rounds. Yet, the rules have three rounds of playoffs. So there was indeed too many teams being relegated. The maths are about the same for the Zondag groups, with slightly different numbers. I've yet to make the necessary modifications, but I suppose it will be pretty straightforward. I suppose.

I really question how those Playoffs even work in real life... Or why the Editor thinks it's alright that it doesn't work as long as you don't add any league. :idiot:Perhaps there are not three Periods n the Tweede Klasse but only two... but then the rules in the Editor files wouldn't make much sense since they specifically ask for three playoff teams per group. Anyway, I'm missing information that I can't find easily online.

 

EDIT: Still not quite there though.

editor_2020-04-09_09-54-31.thumb.png.1f0f3ca8f1800f9a11953dfc66072a97.png

Edited by BMNJohn

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Looking at the reallife rules at the moment

Promotion rules from 2nd class to 1st class:
Champions promote directly to 1st
The period champions play with the numbers 12 and 13 for 1 place in the 1st class.
Number 14 (last) from 1st class relegates directly to 2nd.

This is based on regions, so one specific 1st class will play playoffs with 2 specific 2nd classes. Your system works on a aggregated level sounds like it (didn't check the file yet)

Schedule:
1e round
a. Nr 13 1st class plays Second Lowest Period Champion 2nd class A
b. Nr 12 1st class plays Second Lowest Period Champion 2nd class B
c. Highest period champion 2nd class A plays lowest Period Champion 2nd class B
c. Highest period champion 2nd class B plays lowest Period Champion 2nd class A

2nd round
e. Winner b versus winner d
f. Winner a versus winner c

Final (neutral ground)
g. Winner e versus winner f

So that's three rounds indeed.
For the numbers
1 team is directly relegated
2 teams are directly promoted
2 teams from class 1 and 6 from class 2 fight it out over 1 remaining place
 

This is btw from an official download from KNVB

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Wolf_pd said:

Looking at the reallife rules at the moment

Promotion rules from 2nd class to 1st class:
Champions promote directly to 1st
The period champions play with the numbers 12 and 13 for 1 place in the 1st class.
Number 14 (last) from 1st class relegates directly to 2nd.

This is based on regions, so one specific 1st class will play playoffs with 2 specific 2nd classes. Your system works on a aggregated level sounds like it (didn't check the file yet)

Schedule:
1e round
a. Nr 13 1st class plays Second Lowest Period Champion 2nd class A
b. Nr 12 1st class plays Second Lowest Period Champion 2nd class B
c. Highest period champion 2nd class A plays lowest Period Champion 2nd class B
c. Highest period champion 2nd class B plays lowest Period Champion 2nd class A

2nd round
e. Winner b versus winner d
f. Winner a versus winner c

Final (neutral ground)
g. Winner e versus winner f

So that's three rounds indeed.
For the numbers
1 team is directly relegated
2 teams are directly promoted
2 teams from class 1 and 6 from class 2 fight it out over 1 remaining place
 

This is btw from an official download from KNVB

Which means checking out the file is nonsensical, I'm not even close and frankly, I'm unsure I'm able to recreate specific cup-ties like these.

What is in the file is a bog standard and much, much simpler playoff. Two teams per group of the upper echelon (Eerste Klasse) are directly relegated, two teams from that same echelon are qualified for playoffs. The upper echelon has a maximum of four overall relegation places. The champions of the lower echelon are promoted, which for Saturday clubs make 10 teams and 12 teams for Sunday. The lower echelon has three period winners per group, and they duke it out against the relegation playoffs teams from the upper echelon. On Saturday that makes a total of 40 teams, and 48 on Sunday. And basically a quarter of those teams will play at the upper level once all is said and done.

I still have trouble wrapping my head around the real-life rules to be honest... They look more complex that what I'm personally able to recreate. I'll try to think about it some more.

 

EDIT: Oh well. I made a simple change in the rules to account for there being only one straight relegation spot to from the Eerste Klasse to the Tweede Klasse, and now it works. I cannot swear that the cup-ties are the right ones, but the Editor likes the changes. In league settings -> Qualification Rules, I went from 4 to 3 Maximum Overall Relegation Places, and from 44 to 33 Maximum Relegation Places for All Child Comps.

editor_2020-04-09_15-12-25.thumb.png.9eeb731844b2bbde4b44708457c884dd.png

Edited by BMNJohn

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35 minutes ago, BMNJohn said:

I still have trouble wrapping my head around the real-life rules to be honest... They look more complex that what I'm personally able to recreate. I'll try to think about it some more.

Yup, they are complex. In a regional reallife way they make sense. But implementing them into the editor is ..... not an easy task (understatement of the week).

That's probably why the Claassen rules were so much different. Can't blame for it.

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Posted (edited)
22 minutes ago, Wolf_pd said:

Yup, they are complex. In a regional reallife way they make sense. But implementing them into the editor is ..... not an easy task (understatement of the week).

That's probably why the Claassen rules were so much different. Can't blame for it.

At least now I have something that works and validates, and is at least in the spirit of the real rules even if it's not 100% accurate. There's minimal cross-talk between the groups, the Eerste Klasse has regional boundaries. What would be left is a lot of Wiki love to add full names, foundation dates, kits and colours to the boat load of clubs that don't have any. It does break my immersion to see huge chunks of teams with that same blue and white kit, but I (for once!) really cannot be arsed to add real kits to about 3/4ths of a thousand clubs, give or take. I'll probably add a simplified reserves/U19s system and call it a day.

Edited by BMNJohn

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Posted (edited)

The periods system is getting ridiculous. This is with one match left BTW.


fm_2020-04-13_04-21-06.thumb.png.0a61ae2c1ba0799456783b1995d96391.png

I haven't seen or at least not understood if there's some bit of rule I could use to prevent teams below the 9th place from qualifying to the playoffs. Haven't seen it.

EDIT: Also, new feature: I discovered that during the first few seasons, the promotion/relegation playoffs between the Eerste Klasse and Tweede Klasse have inconsistent dates... most likely because not every team has a stadium (as well as potentially waterlogged pitches but shhh). The playoffs for the Zondag teams can start up to one whole week later than the Zaterdag teams. It streamlines itself after a few years when everyone has built their own stadium.

Edited by BMNJohn

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That's impressive. I mean, you play one period really good and the rest of the year you play like you are on rollerskates....

The stadium issue is a known one yeah. Especially annoying in lower league cups and in less developed countries if no stadium is assigned.

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40 minutes ago, Wolf_pd said:

That's impressive. I mean, you play one period really good and the rest of the year you play like you are on rollerskates....

The issue is exacerbated because you have so few matches per season in the lower divisions. Often, there's little difference in points n a team placed 6th and a team basically fighting against relegation in 12th position. The result of matches is much more determined by Morale and Reputation than actual player quality, and each point is worth a lot more. There's essentially no difference between an Eerste Klasse (D6) and Tweede Klasse (D7) team, as well as most of the Hoofdklasse (D5) although the level increases a little bit. Meanwhile on the current simulation I'm running, there's exactly one Period winner in the Eerste Divisie (D2) in 5 seasons that has finished relatively far from the top, finishing 10th. FM really scales poorly when you go down the leagues.

That being said and after looking at it, I'm still not aware of a flag I could use to prevent teams that finish too low in the league from qualifying to the playoffs. I don't see such a rule in the vanilla Eerste Divisie rules either.

50 minutes ago, Wolf_pd said:

The stadium issue is a known one yeah. Especially annoying in lower league cups and in less developed countries if no stadium is assigned.

At first I thought that I messed up the playoff dates since the Zondag clubs were essentially starting their playoffs only once the Zaterdag clubs were done, but as I moved through the years, I noticed that it smoothed out. That being said, you still have the occasional water-logged pitch in late April/early May when the league ends or worse, during the playoffs. Then a few clubs don't finish the league on the last scheduled matchday like the others, finishing the next day instead (weather permitting)... and the whole train goes off rails. At least the Hoofdklasse/Eerste Klasse playoffs and Eerste Klasse/Tweede Klasse playoffs aren't two-legged.

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Is there already a working file that I can use? I would like to start a LLM career in Holland in the near future :)

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if it's any solace for FM21 we have been adding all stadiums and kits through to the Derde Klasse (although some Sunday leagues are still missing and not sure if that'll be done as its low priority)

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Posted (edited)
On 25/04/2020 at 14:56, Winski said:

Is there already a working file that I can use? I would like to start a LLM career in Holland in the near future :)

I do have one down to Tweede Klasse. There's a few caveats, but I don't think there's anything so wrong with it that it would be noticeable or would ruin a save. I just wish that SI would fix the issue with .fmf files with the Gamepass so I could put my money where my mouth is!

On 25/04/2020 at 15:23, Reddiablo said:

if it's any solace for FM21 we have been adding all stadiums and kits through to the Derde Klasse (although some Sunday leagues are still missing and not sure if that'll be done as its low priority)

That's good to hear. To be honest, just having the home kit and club colours would be good enough to bring depth to the lower leagues.

Edited by BMNJohn

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I don't know if I'm horribly bumping this thread, but regarding the winning a period, but ending in a relegation spot:

I'm almost certain that I've read in the KNVB's official league rules that if a period champion ends in a relegation spot, their promotion playoff ticket will be revoked and given to the highest ranked team in the final table. So in that case relegation playoffs would go over promotion playoffs.

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I'm glad to see people that people took this over. Normally I'd help out but I didn't buy last 2 games because all the errors the editor gave and a lot was still hardcoded. That was really timeconsuming and made it impossible to create a realistic copy of the dutch leagues. Especially the prize money bothered me because clubs got really rich a few seasons in if I didn't edit it but that was hardcoded.

I might pick up next version though. But it depends on the new features. Although I see that the info of lower leagues is created aswell which is nice.

If you ever want to create promotion relegation with Jong teams then I can always help out. I used to move stage 0 to stage 1 and make a hidden stage 0 that drew 1st teams in Group 1 and Jong teams in Group 2 which I could use to relegate Jong teams seperately from the main competition. That might be useful with the upcoming u21 competition.

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