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Pixel Viking

[Suggestion] Fundamental Rebrand of FM (Simplification & Innovation)

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Here is my take on how I personally believe FM can innovative and become an even greater game than it is now. Attached you can see some screenshot suggestions. The toon characters are placeholders.

I've divided this post into two. 

Problem and solutions & Feature suggestions

## Problems and Solutions ##

Let's begin with the problems of FM - 

1 - Game is too complex, too many feature and details.
2 - There are very little linear approaches to get from A to B.
3 - Player stats are overly complicated
4 - Replayability is limited due to gamification elements not being fully utilized.

How can this be solved?

1 - Lower complexity by removing information users don't care about.
2 - Create a more linear game
3 - Simplify Player Stats
4 - Add Gamification Elements (See Concepts)

Let's look at each point in detail.

1# - Complexity

Having been involved in several start-ups, a mistake a lot of people make is making the product too complex. We aim for the elite, rather than the average joe who by far make up the majority of the user database.

* Remove the concept of training and let the player get better based on their potential and matches they play.

* Simplify Player Stats (see attached image for suggestion)

* Simplify the tactical system. The average joe thinks mostly in terms of defensive, counter, possession, direct and attacking football. (See attachment for suggestion)

* Remove press conferences

* Remove news

* Remove complex contract system

2# - Linear Approach

This is tied in with complexity, when reducing complexity you naturally increase usability.

3# - Simplify Player Stats

This point was touched upon in section #1, but if we bear in mind that people are simple. When we think of Gareth Bale, we think a player who is fast, got some sweet free kicks and good dribbling skills. If then go to Pogba you will say a guy who's good at passing and dribbling, a creative guy.

You certainly don't think about flair, influence, off the ball, positioning, teamwork, work rate, bravery, anticipation, aggression. Even though these matter and are real attributes of a player, they can be confined into one or more attributes. See concept image for suggestions.

#4 - Replayability is limited due to not fully utilizing gamification elements.

This leads me to my next point, features!

## Feature Suggestion ##

- Cards

Fifa has done it big-time by following the trends of games such as Pokemon and WoW where there is a constant rewarding behavior by acquiring new assets. In the football world, a new asset would be a player. the best method to date in order to achieve this is by using cards. The ability for a user to gain card packs as a reward or buy card packs would greatly increase gamification and the replayability of the game. 

You get the effect "treasure effect" where you never know what you might find.

Imagine you win a gold pack every time your team got into a top 4 spot in the league, or if you win an official tournament it would grant you a special diamond pack with a unique player in it. That is a real reward, rather than just getting a visual reward by seeing your team in spot 4 or 5 on the table.

- Player Involvement

When a player sign up to the game(maybe people get an option to use a world wide online database, not necessairly an online FM game), he is asked to take a picture of him or herself. The player is then added as the captain of his team. So, the player becomes a part of the football manager universe. How cool wouldn't that be? :) 

Cheers,
Pixel Viking

 


 

Map.png

Match.png

Player Overview.png

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1 minute ago, oulzac said:

No to all of it. You are clearly playing the wrong game if that is what you want. There are plenty of other FM knock offs that are exactly that on Steam.

I don't think it's fair of you to say you are playing the wrong game. There is a reason why they invented Football Manager Touch in an attempt to simplify things. I imagine you are one of the elites that like it complex, fair enough to you, but to the average joe that is not the case.

There are no FM knock offs on steam that I am aware of that does this, not even close. They all go into the same trap of complexity.

 

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1 hour ago, Pixel Viking said:

* Remove the concept of training and let the player get better based on their potential and matches they play.

Removing training in a football game??

Thats removing one of the core units of the game.  Whilst its been discussed in many other threads it hardly adds to the complexity, you can leave it on the default settings and do just fine.

 

1 hour ago, Pixel Viking said:

* Simplify Player Stats (see attached image for suggestion)

Why?

How do you simplify them and how would they work within the ME?  The ME needs numbers to work with for the thousands of calculations it makes per match.

As you've took a shine to Fifa though its worth noting that even though Fifa only shows six? basic numbers this is broken down further if you look at the individual players with the actual number of attributes being similar to FM.

 

1 hour ago, Pixel Viking said:

* Simplify the tactical system. The average joe thinks mostly in terms of defensive, counter, possession, direct and attacking football. (See attachment for suggestion)

You want to get rid of training and now you want to get rid of tactics, do we go back to dice & pen/paper??

 

 

1 hour ago, Pixel Viking said:

* Remove press conferences

* Remove news

* Remove complex contract system

More removing of stuff, is there anything you want to keep?

 

 

1 hour ago, Pixel Viking said:

2# - Linear Approach

This is tied in with complexity, when reducing complexity you naturally increase usability.

Not true.

You can have something straight forward that is still badly designed and you can have complex things that are very usable.

 

 

1 hour ago, Pixel Viking said:

3# - Simplify Player Stats

This point was touched upon in section #1, but if we bear in mind that people are simple. When we think of Gareth Bale, we think a player who is fast, got some sweet free kicks and good dribbling skills. If then go to Pogba you will say a guy who's good at passing and dribbling, a creative guy.

You certainly don't think about flair, influence, off the ball, positioning, teamwork, work rate, bravery, anticipation, aggression. Even though these matter and are real attributes of a player, they can be confined into one or more attributes. See concept image for suggestions.

While some are linked you certainly can't describe all those attributes as the same thing.

Overall maybe we could lose some attributes and combine others but to do so would be a significant change to FM which would need a lot of work.

 

 

1 hour ago, Pixel Viking said:

#4 - Replayability is limited due to not fully utilizing gamification elements.

The replayability with FM is extremely high, really surprised you can't see that.

 

 

1 hour ago, Pixel Viking said:

This leads me to my next point, features!

## Feature Suggestion ##

- Cards

Fifa has done it big-time by following the trends of games such as Pokemon and WoW where there is a constant rewarding behavior by acquiring new assets. In the football world, a new asset would be a player. the best method to date in order to achieve this is by using cards. The ability for a user to gain card packs as a reward or buy card packs would greatly increase gamification and the replayability of the game. 

You get the effect "treasure effect" where you never know what you might find.

Imagine you win a gold pack every time your team got into a top 4 spot in the league, or if you win an official tournament it would grant you a special diamond pack with a unique player in it. That is a real reward, rather than just getting a visual reward by seeing your team in spot 4 or 5 on the table.

Maybe as a separate part of the game like the draft is as it does seem to work in other games.

However not as part of the main game, that would be rubbish.

 

 

1 hour ago, Pixel Viking said:

- Player Involvement

When a player sign up to the game(maybe people get an option to use a world wide online database, not necessairly an online FM game), he is asked to take a picture of him or herself. The player is then added as the captain of his team. So, the player becomes a part of the football manager universe. How cool wouldn't that be? :) 

Fictional universe released as a separate database?

Maybe, again I've seen it work in other games but SI don't seem keen and it would be another official database they have to manage which takes time.

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2 hours ago, oulzac said:

No, just, no.

Add a third "no" there, from me.

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Appreciate there's been some effort gone into this post, but suggesting that FM is improved by removing any semblance of complexity is akin to suggesting that Call of Duty is improved by removing the ability of the enemy to shoot back :)

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I'll echo @enigmatic point about the effort put into the op however what @Pixel Viking has outlined is a 5 minute a day browser based management game while the aim of FM is to be an immersive & highly accurate simulation which is at the polar opposite in the gaming world to the OP.

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Pixel ... it's not for FMers ... what you've described feels very much like something I played on my mobile on a long train in Vietnam! Completed 10 seasons in 7 hours... think it was Championship Manager mobile or something.

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Haha, I see my post getting some good and positive feedback! Gave me a good laugh, I do appreciate you guys being good sports about hating my ideas, cheers! :) 

I'll respond to you when I get home from work today Cougar.

Edited by Pixel Viking

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The game is trying to simulate the aspects of football management, now I doubt Ancelotti gets a "Gold Pack" every time he wins the league. And whilst press conferences and media interaction tends to get boring and repetitive after a while, it`s an integral part of the footballing world and it should be in the game. 

 

16 hours ago, Pixel Viking said:



This point was touched upon in section #1, but if we bear in mind that people are simple. When we think of Gareth Bale, we think a player who is fast, got some sweet free kicks and good dribbling skills. If then go to Pogba you will say a guy who's good at passing and dribbling, a creative guy.

You certainly don't think about flair, influence, off the ball, positioning, teamwork, work rate, bravery, anticipation, aggression. Even though these matter and are real attributes of a player, they can be confined into one or more attributes. See concept image for suggestions.
 

Totally disagree, you do think about those attributes, you hear them every day, every week in analysis made by pundits and managers, hell, even down at the pub during the Champions League final you  here people saying how Ronaldo has an excellent positioning and off the ball movement, how Bonucci`s positioning is the best in the league, but it`s been crap for two of the goals, or how Kante`s work rate was instrumental in Leicester`s midfield....just because you think Ronaldo is a good goalscorer and a technically gifted player doesn`t mean it`s the norm. 

Like someone above said, you`re playing the wrong game if you want to simplify or eliminate most of the things that have made Football Manager what it is.

 

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Football Manager Touch already simplifies the game a lot, I don't think there would be a need to make the game even simpler.

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Sorry my reply wasn't very constructive.  It's a nice idea Pixel, there definitely people out there who would want it and clearly there is a market for it, aiming at casual gamers.

But you only have to look at 99% of the suggestions on this forum and you realise that FM fans want more realism.  That means greater depth not simplicity.  This simulation is for people who genuinely want to be as close to the experience as possible.  If anything, SI are very sensible in not giving into the complexities that a lot of fans have demanded in an effort to...well, keep the game playable to be quite honest.

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I've played an online game that's arguably very similar to what the OP is asking for - Soccer Manager 20xx (it 'updates' every year with new features). While it's not a terrible game, it's somewhat simplistic and just feels like a heavily watered-down FM. I've never been motivated enough to stick with careers for very long.

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This wouldn't be a rebrand. It would be a fundamental shift in the very basis of the game. The game is a manager simulator around the sport of football. What is being suggested is basically taking away a lot of the management elements and even some of the footballing.

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If FMM became a hybrid between this and its existing gameplay, I'd be all for it. As a PC game, I can't support it - whilst care and effort has been put in, the further gamification is something I strongly oppose, and would add that the concepts, on the whole, are more suited to on-the-go gaming. 

Definitely some good ideas for portability though.

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Yeah, by all means if they want to get into the area of ruthlessly exploiting the weak-minded "whales" in their user base using the old skinner-box techniques, then this would probably work.  Everyone else is doing it, why shouldn't SI?  But pretty much none of this should get anywhere near any flavours of the main game.

I actually thought this might be an elaborately written whoosh on all of us, but appears the OP was actually serious.  Odd.

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What I don't understand is that unless these screenshots have been mocked just to demonstrate what the OP is suggesting, there already seems to be the ideal solution.

FM for me is the escapism of living in the role of a football manager all warts and all simulating the true experience as much as possible. What the OP suggest is very, very far from that.

Edited by jWaSiMhE

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The reason why people buy the game almost every year is for the realism (it's still not perfect but then it never will be after all life isn't perfect), what is being suggested is a backwards step to the original Championship Manager format (yes I've played the game in all it's guises from the original CM) if not to management games of the mid 1980's. Cutting back on those features which makes the game so frustrating at times is not going to make the gameplay any better nor will adding fancy graphics. If you want that then the Football Manager series is not the game for you. 

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Football Manager is more a simulation than a game. It is, of course, a game, but you know :-)

 

I think that making it more "gamey" would be a very bad thing for the game. It lives off of the simulation aspect.

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You should go ask Ubisoft to manager a football management game because this looks exactly like the kind of dross they produce.

 

Also what you've listed as 'gamification' is actually just an attempt to force greater monetization of the game with the bare minimum of effort.

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I can see you put some effort into this post so I will try and be kind, but really, this is not what the core Football Manager fans want. We revel in the complexity of the game. We are looking for the most realistic simulation possible of the footballing world and being a manager in that footballing world. 

I want Football Manager to be more immersive and more emergent than it already is and your ideas gut the very experience I'm looking for. I have been playing since the CM days and I would not buy your version of the game. Not because it's inherently bad, but because it's simply not what I'm looking for. 

THAT SAID: 

I do agree that Football Manager could do with a total ground up UI redesign that allows for a more streamlined approach to completing certain tasks in the game (without removing any of the underlying complexity and optional close control) 

This goes back to the emergent nature of the game. I want to make choices that affect the game world and those choices should be sufficiently deep and complex but not difficult and confusing to make.  Basically, allow me to do more things in an easier fashion so I can experience the emergent world forming with the greatest ease possible. 

There is a hell of a lot that can be improved in Football Manager and streamlining isn't always a dirty word in the simulation game as long as it's not code for "dumbing down" which I'm afraid your suggestions really are. 

Let me navigate the game with more ease and clearer interactions that have meaningful outcomes in the fastest and best looking way possible. There is plenty there that I would support seeing future FM's take on but removing the complexity and deep nature of the simulation is not the answer.

 

 

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Greetings everyone, I appreciate your feedback on my ideas.

As a UX designer, your feedback is key. Football Manager is the most popular manager game there is and you all might very well be right and I myself be wrong. The only way to verify this would be to look at the data that Siggames has and see what functionality is actually being used. Remember guys, in every game there are the casuals and the elites. Most of the time, the casuals make up by far the largest user database and one of the reasons I made this is due to FM not having much of innovation as of late. If you open up FM 2008,  it ain't going to stray far off from 2017. That's almost 10 years of standing still. Of course, the 3D engine is sweet, not undermining that in any way.

As well as the fact that they invented FM Touch, which indicates that there may be(may be, not saying it is) a larger user database that simply does not need all the functionality that you guys use and enjoy.

Finally, regardless if you hate my ideas or not, there are certain elements that FM could benefit from and reduce complexity without reducing functionality would definitely be one of them. :) Asherware you really hit the nail on the head! Well done.

Edited by Pixel Viking

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No innovation from FM2008 to FM2017? We`ve had a total revamp of the tactics screen and tactics itself, a new scouting system, I think training is different from how it was in FM2008, much better player and media interaction,  even if it needs improvement, and much more detail and much more options for international management. And that`s just a few of the things that I can remember. Of course the game at it`s core will remain largely unchanged, it`s focused around football management, but to say the series stood still from 2008 to 2017 is ridiculous IMO. 

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It does devalue the OP's comments to a point close to zero, sorry @Pixel Viking but you're way off base & probably exposing your own lack of experience & knowledge of this genre if you think FM has not innovated much in the last decade.

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You know, I would be positive if the mobile version went in this direction. The current FMM is trying to be as FM as possible on a 5" screen, and I find it tedious to click all these teeny tiny buttons for all the various options. Hell, on team selection I tend to do "clear squad, auto pick, done". I don't even take a good look at the players and decide which ones to play, because it's all so small and clunky. 

On a PC though.. with a mouse and a large screen.. nope. 

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On 30/08/2017 at 21:19, Pixel Viking said:

Remember guys, in every game there are the casuals and the elites. Most of the time, the casuals make up by far the largest user database

I'd argue FM is the opposite here and goes against the trend. The casuals are the smaller part of the user database, The "Elites" are the main audience and they come for the depth, the complexity, all the stats/attributes and if SI took your ideas a lot of the user base would go overnight probably back to the previous FM where it was "right"

If anything we want more depth and more complexity maybe try a different game or if you want to stick with FM maybe try to understand the game first? 

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On 24/08/2017 at 19:08, Pixel Viking said:

Let's begin with the problems of FM - 

1 - Game is too complex, too many feature and details.
2 - There are very little linear approaches to get from A to B.
3 - Player stats are overly complicated
4 - Replayability is limited due to gamification elements not being fully utilized.

How can this be solved?

1 - Lower complexity by removing information users don't care about.
2 - Create a more linear game
3 - Simplify Player Stats
4 - Add Gamification Elements (See Concepts)


## Feature Suggestion ##

- Cards

 

Personally, you're looking to take everything out of FM that makes it great.

1. If you dumb this game down you take away everything that makes it great. The level of detail that goes into each version makes it as immersive as it is. Removing information you don't care about would take away information that is key. In my opinion, the game gets better, the more in-depth it gets. If SI every dumbed down the game, they'd lose at least one customer.

2. This is a football manager sim, not Crash Bandicoot. You can't complete it. How would you make it linear, and more importantly why would you want to?

3. You don't have to use them if you don't want to. In my opinion, they could do more with them, but it's a work in progress from what I can tell. The presentation of the analysis is something I'd like to see improved. Unless you're talking about player attributes here...

4. Where are you getting these stats? I would have thought Football Manager is one of the most played games on the market. The game is made to be realistic. Adding gamification elements would ruin it. Unless you're talking about adding things separate to the main game, like vs. tournaments etc. 

Personally, it seems like you're wanting to turn the game into something it is not. Removing everything that sets it apart in the market to make it more like everything else in the market. 

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Sorry @Pixel Viking, i'm with the rest.

Your ideas have potential, to make new game that is on par of FIFA Ultimate Team. It is not for FM. Maybe a FM Live sort of thing.

But I agree that FM needs a bit of revamp, but since we will in couple of weeks have new features announced and this kind of thing has been a bit debated in the last few years. Maybe SI tried with the new FM to make things a lot more cleaner and the game feel less complicated, without removing any features.

Here's hoping for that.

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