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walktheplank Nov 3, 2023 3:15 PM
Yeah, it's certainly been a while. I guess it was probably in Chang or whatever it was called back then.

I did Humble Bundle for a long time, most of my games are that or random buys in steam sales. Not the most efficient use of my money seeing as only about 50 of those games have been played for more than 10 hours. I don't mind too much I suppose though as a lot of that went to charity.

walktheplank Oct 30, 2023 9:58 PM
I'm not surprised about Nunez honestly, I'd imagine his physicals and mental attributes are fairly similar to DCL and he's got more about him technically.

There are types of player archetypes that the match engine just loves. The physical monster as we've already spoken about, the dime a dozen ball mover (vision/passing/first touch/technique) and whatever you'd call Callum Wilson (holy trinity + a little pace and work rate).

That's actually why I like managing in lesser leagues, you get to build tactics around players with very specific skill sets. In top divisions players obviously get more and more well rounded and that means you can get away with doing whatever. I also love when you find a freak 18-20 technique/creativity guy whilst managing in the lower leagues, they do things you don't see in top divisions. I guess it's because they're so far above their competition in those aspects or something.

I don't remember why but I must have deleted everyone from my friends list, must have had an episode. My steam friend code is 66695117
walktheplank Oct 28, 2023 11:13 PM
I think you're absolutely right as to why negative hidden attributes/personalities are not given to real life players. Same reason they don't have clubs financially mismanaged to anywhere near the extent that they are in real life. I could absolutely see an agent or a club official getting upset over something like that.

Don't recall Richarldson or McTominay being worldbeaters in any of my games but Calvert-Lewin, absolutely. Physicals, particularly the strength attribute, are really good in the match engine. We have a young striker who's only ever managed 3 or 4 goals in a season in the real world, in football manager he'll score 30+ in the Premier League easily. He's broken to the point where I actually put in a post on the SI forum asking the Norwich researcher to nerf him.

walktheplank Oct 26, 2023 5:59 PM
I wish they cared less about new features and more about polishing and reworking old ones. Although in their eyes I guess they need new things to make people buy the new game. I think some aspects of the game, like player and press interactions, need to be rebuilt from the ground up. I also think set pieces need to be torn down and rebuilt too although I'll take what we've got this year (basically the same as before but now your staff do the micromanaging in game).

They also added the option to use an intermediary to help sell a player. Honestly I think they folded to pressure there and added the option to stop people complaining. In the real world teams get stuck with players and the game should really mimic that.

If I stay in Japan for my first main save I'll likely start with the same club or Shonan Bellmare in the division above. I believe Bellmare means beautiful sea in Italian. I also recall watching one of their games on youtube and hearing their fans sing We Are out of nowhere. They also play in a striking radioactive green which is pretty cool. A lively club that's for sure.

The Vanarama north/south save is always fun. In regards to work permits there are new rules in place which mean English clubs can sign 2-4 players per season without having to worry about work permit rules. I don't know if that affects Vanorama or just Premier league down to League 2 though.

I do like the English bottom to top type save a lot though. It's a really tough start as the national leagues are savage but then getting from league 2 to the Championship is fairly smooth. Then it's tough again because of the huge gulf in finances. Then premier league is premier league, hopefully the AI squad building is better than it has been there.
walktheplank Oct 26, 2023 4:43 PM
That's fair. I quite enjoy beta saves because sometimes you can see things that they're working on that don't make it into the final cut. A good example of this is last year where the match engine was super chaotic in midfield, with lots of interceptions, deflections and possession turning over. For whatever reason they couldn't balance it correctly so they ended up just going back to what they had in previous game. They've added some of that in this year's engine with deflections feeling a lot more natural but the midfield play still feels far too smooth.

If I was to take a guess what will get toned back from this beta it's probably the influence of money clubs out in the desert. I've seen quite a few people posting stupid fees they've gotten for average players from teams in Saudi Arabia.

A lot of the best saves I've had have just been through picking a league I know next to nothing about and then going on wikipedia and finding a club with an interesting story in that league. Google streetview helps me pick sides too although that's probably too much for most people. lmao
walktheplank Oct 25, 2023 10:09 PM
Have you picked up this year's football manager? If so how are you finding the beta?

I've actually been enjoying it a hell of a lot more than last year's game already. I don't think they've delivered on all of their marketing selling points (player interactions are still pretty weird) but I am enjoying the most recent version of the match engine a lot. Players seem so much more aware of each other you can combine roles that you couldn't before. Of course there are still problems with it like manager ai not subbing players until really late in the game. There are things we're just not going to know about until we've played a lot like the AI team building, if they nail that long term saves will be a lot more challenging.

I started in the J-league 3 with a team purely because of their hipster badge. There's a lot of parity in their top division and it's also financially pretty strong compared to a lot of the smaller leagues, which makes sense I guess. It seems that the main challenge for a lower league team going through the leagues in Japan will be getting the domestic talent level of the squad up. You can only use 4 foreign players (or 5 in top division) but you can sign as many as you want so it makes for quite a fun squad building balancing act. Also found that if you're looking to make money flipping players for profit it's much better to sign an average Korean or Chinese player than the significantly better South Americans you can sign. I guess that makes sense as their leagues put a lot of value in domestic players. It's been years since I've played in a league like this.
walktheplank Oct 17, 2023 9:14 PM
That's interesting, I don't think winning a title or a CL would have that sort of impact on me. I guess Benfica are in that category of teams that could potentially win one and we just aren't ever going to be. Best we could hope for is a freak season like Leicester's 5000-1 title win.

I do however struggle to see how fans that didn't grow up/live in the vicinity of a club actually manage to forge a connection with the club. If I didn't go to games I'd certainly care a lot less about the club overall. If I moved to another city I'd still support the club but I doubt I'd follow anywhere near as closely.

My club are actually in the process of selling to an American guy and his family. Our current owner is worth about $30m whereas this guy is supposedly worth $700m. He founded an asset management company that manage over $40b in assets and owns a baseball team worth $1.6b. He doesn't give off the impression of somebody that's going to spend wildly but it's a hell of a step up in finances we could be potentially getting our hands on. Our current owners haven't put anything in for a very long time. Interestingly the guy's brother wrote Donnie Brasco and was one of the producers on House. lol

England beat Italy 3 - 1 to qualify. Our front 4 of Kane, Bellingham, Foden and Rashford (or Grealish) is pretty damn good.
walktheplank Oct 13, 2023 5:25 PM
The club vs country thing I'd tend to say club. Although it would depend on how we're winning our CL, if we're just another Man City then I'd probably take the World Cup. I have a feeling I'd become jaded very quickly if we became one of the wealthiest clubs in the world overnight.

How do you feel on that topic? Would you want some uber rich Sheikh to take over and buy your way to being one of those top 8 in the world?

I watched a Nations League game when it first started up and it was clear our players didn't care less. I'm not putting the effort in if they aren't.
walktheplank Oct 13, 2023 4:30 PM
Purely because of PES and Football manager but I quite liked that early 2010s era of the Portuguese team. Deco, Moutinho, Quaresma, Simao and Jose Bosingwa of all players. I do seem to recall you really lacking top tier strikers back then, Ronado obviously became that later down the line.

I don't have any doubts that your team will get better without Ronaldo. Of course his ego isn't going to let him, I'm sure he's noticed that nobody really cares about what he's doing kicking it around with the camels on the club stage.

Yeah, I'd really like to see us win something in my lifetime but am not expecting it. As much as our media will tell you otherwise the women's euros doesn't actually count as 'football coming home'.
walktheplank Oct 13, 2023 3:53 PM
I honestly haven't watched one qualifying game for the Euros but checking it we're comfortably top of our group. With our squad we really should be going far but honestly I don't think we'll ever win anything with Southgate in charge. We have a lot of very good young players in the midfield but nowhere near as much depth in defensive or the main striking position.

Not going to lie it is a weird seeing a 20 year old English player absolutely tearing it up for Real Madrid. Bellingham feels like he could be a player we build around for a generation. Hopefully will be more successful in an England shirt than the last couple of these early bloomers we've had in Rooney and Owen.
walktheplank Oct 13, 2023 1:22 PM
I'd imagine it's far less likely to see them talking about the MLS because you're algorithms will be tuned in to the European game. Although I'm sure there are plenty that do just support a European side. It makes as a lot of them don't live anywhere near a pro team. Yank sports culture is very different to ours here in Europe. Whilst people here do of course follow multiple sports it's far more normal for them to follow 4 or 5 different sports and watch whatever's in season at the time.

American football is actually growing in popularity in England. There's semi regularly talk about having an NFL expansion team in London.

In terms of numbers of fans I'm sure Cricket smashes Basketball in terms of viewers. Of course Basketball is one of those sports that people love to play casually all over the world. A lot of the Euro basketball fans I've seen seem to be football fans doing something extra on the side. Is that the case? I know Benfica have a lot of different sports clubs linked to the club, I'm sure they have a basketball team.

Whilst I know what you mean about the bubble they live in over there I think it's more of an older generation thing. Americans under 30 are far more open to the sport and I think there's a decent amount of data to back that up. It's replacing Hockey and Baseball for a lot of people.

Cricket is the second most popular sport in England although rugby is a close 3rd. It's also a bit of a north/south divide thing with cricket being more popular in the south and rugby being more popular in the north. Of course if we're talking wider UK/Ireland Rugby is by far the most popular sport in Wales and Gaelic football is the most popular in Ireland. None of Scotland's regional sports come close to Football though.

Indian subcontinent for cricket really is like Football in South America. Absolutely fanatical.
walktheplank Oct 12, 2023 4:53 PM
I have a softer opinion when it comes to the Yanks and Soccer. Whilst it's true they have some people that don't try and understand the game and think it's boring due to low sores/perceived pace of game we also have those exact people in our nations. Both people that don't understand football and football fans that don't care to learn the boring Yank sports. I'm one of those people that can enjoy most sports once I know the rules.

There has been a notable spike in popularity recently, it's safe to say that's probably down to the fact their national team are actually pretty good these days. They've had the better of their big rivals Mexico a lot recently too which probably helps. Apparently they've actually been out-footballing them and not just out muscling them like when they beat them in the past.

They've also got a fairly respectable domestic league nowadays too. Decent attendances and aren't relying on gimmicks like they did in the 90s. They're also not really a retirement league these days which is still something I see getting thrown at them from European fans.

I'd put football not catching on in as much in the colonies down to the fact that football was simpley less massive back then. Things like Tennis, Cricket and Rugbuy had more of the market back then. Rugby would still be the preferred sport of an awful lot of the north of England and Cricket would still be a favourite sport of a lot of the south.
walktheplank Oct 12, 2023 3:00 PM
Whilst it's true that North Korea are an insular nation all it takes is one whim of the dear leader. Honestly NK have done some weird things on the global stage. Kidnapping that South Korean film director so their leader could make a Godzilla clone has to be one of my favourite weird global stories ever. Also that Wrestling event in the 90s. Just weird.

There was that one North Korean player that was in the Juventus youth system a few years back. Safe to say his life has been a fairly unique one.

That's a fair point, I can see the poverty and social inequality playing a part. Although I would say you also see quite a few of those type of accounts being tied to people in the USA. The whole 'Pessi' vs 'Penaldo' conversation is not really one I've ever made myself apart of. I will say that if Ibrahimovic had stuck around at 1 or 2 clubs in his career he'd have been in that conversation too.

You're right about nobody really caring about the HK/Singapore/ect leagues. I'm guessing they were just cheap licenses and are relatively small so don't require too much in terms of researcher hours. I'd love it of they put in a lot of the western African leagues. So many top players have come from that part of the world. Like I said before I think the Northern African leagues will be the next ones added.
walktheplank Oct 12, 2023 1:43 PM
I assume you're talking about things like the City Football Group when talking about monopolies? I'm honestly not too knowledgeable on that aspect of the sport but it certainly feels like a less fair version of 2 clubs pooling resources for mutual benefit. As for owners owning multiple teams, I've seen cases where it's far more dodgy than others. Watford's owners, the Pozzo family (of course they'd be Italian), also owned Udinese and Granada. There were plenty of eyebrow raising transfers between those clubs, a lot of which helped Watford evade FFP regulations.

You say no foreign government should be powerful enough to take over a football team but our ownership selling to the North Korean regime would be far more interesting to watch than some random New York finance guy and his pleasant family.

I've certainly noticed that about football fanboy culture and those exact parts of the world. I'd struggle to even hazard a guess to why it's like that, maybe it's just how they consume football? Through the lens of social media than actual football.

I'd have personally liked them to hit clubs harder financially after Covid. They did a little in the game but they also had crowds during the Covid season which meant it recovered faster. It affected all clubs differently but my club, a giant we are not, lost more than £35m in that season.

Actually finances in general should be made 'harder' in Football Manager. You can go massively in debt in the game but the game compensates with mystery donations from investors. I have to wonder if it's a case of SI not wanting licensed team to be shown going under due to financial malpractice. That's just a tin foil hat theory though.

At this point the lack of African leagues doesn't feel great. I guess it makes sense though as generally there isn't a lot of interest in it and it would be a huge endeavor. I'd imagine we'll get those North African leagues at some point though.
walktheplank Oct 12, 2023 11:06 AM
Stuart Webber, the sporting director at Norwich, gave a pretty perfect take on agents in football. I'm paraphrasing as I can't find the interview but he said that agents are absolutely needed but football as a whole got what they should be paid wrong by a decimal place. Mendes is an extreme example but in general agents probably have too much sway.

As a pure footballing occasion the World Cup was great. I think the fact it was in the middle of the season probably helped it, players were far less jaded than they tend to be in summer tournaments. Obviously hard to look past the human impact of it though.

I always forget about military service in football manager until it stings me. The fact that Korean footballers can get out of it by winning a youth cup is also pretty funny, especially when entering it as an overage player. Also pretty funny imagining a k-pop band paratrooper unit (although from what I've seen about that industry military service will be a vacation).

Real world events/politics vs making an immersive football simulation is a balancing act for sure. I know they massively reduced the in game impact of Covid so it didn't make people think of the real world too much but then they also added all of sanctions for Russian clubs. I wonder what will happen to the Israeli league over the coming months, I regularly find good regens out of that part of the world so hopefully not too much.

If I were SI I'd be looking to add the Saudi league, I doubt they will be though. For a fully authentic ACL I feel like it needs Al Hilal.

It’s time to ditch the text file.
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