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Online Football Manager

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First of all I admit that the theme is very much used and there are all kinds and sorts of sites or desktop games that are using the ideas of simulating the world of football. What you see and what you don't I myself have lost (or enjoyed, depending on the point of view) many many hours playing (or hating) such games. What annoys me most about them (except losing) is that always you have to watch out for some numbers. And always these numbers are very important. So, when you joined this "super new and amazing football manager game", you spend like 2 weeks learning what these numbers stand for. I am sure that when Sir Alex Ferguson looks at a new talent, he takes out his player sheet, where all the numbers are shown and thinks "Ah! He has a splendid 95 for shooting, but just 63 for ball control. Should I sign him when he is only 50 determined or better not". What I want to do is get away from this annoying numbers. What is the meaning then of having scouts and coaches if they can't tell you whether a player is a good finisher, or if he is lazy as a tourist on the beach :-). Send you scout to search for talent and he will tell you whether there is the next Maradona or you will have to do with the local guy, named Chuck. The coaches will be your "local advisers". They will be the people telling you how your players are performing in training. But it will be up to the player to use this knowledge. Youths and Reserves Almost every desktop Football Manager gives you the ability to develop your youth players and the reserves. Very few are the online ones that are offering that. Mainly, because that means lots of extra data and resources. The Technology This is what will make all the difference, I hope. I'm planning on using JEE, as an alternative to all those PHP sites. I started with Struts, but then I came upon JavaServer Faces and currently I am thinking about switching to them. Another interesting possibility would be to use JBoss Seam and integrate Ajax with JSF. What do you guys think about it? Cheers.

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I think that without the numbers, the game won't be very fun. I don't find them annoying at all. In a game like the one you mention, I would just be frustrated that I don't have much information to work with. In fact, I would just want to see the numbers for the coaches and scouts. Games are about interesting choices, and if there is little data upon which to make your choice, I don't think it would be interesting.

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You will have to trust your staff. When your scout watches a player, who has a passing of 20 (say the best possible) he will tell you that he has seen a terrific passer of the ball. If you can see it all for yourself what is the meaning of having scouts or coaches. You can do it all yourself.

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I just think that sounds like it would restrict the amount of control you have over the game. Obviously you can overdo it with stats, but if you can't directly compare players or try to work out how their stats affect the gameplay, it seems like there's not going to be much to do that has a meaningful effect on the game.

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I am not saying, that I will hide the stats from the games. After a game finishes, you get all the info from it, like passes completion, tackles, shots and ratings. And these stats will be in history saved. You will have to look for players based on their performance and your scouts.

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Although useful, those weren't the kind of stats I meant. I like having player attributes as numeric values, basically.

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And I think that showing player abilities as numbers does not represent a real life case. Those numbers were introduced for this, but now all you do is count them.

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I really know what you mean, there are some MUDs or Online Manager out there where it is really hard to understand the effects of the stats and it can be really hard "work" to teach yourself how to get the best out of the game.

But thats it whats the game about, learning the game mechanics and getting the best out of it. If you remove it you have to offer something else. (I currently have no idea what this could be in a Simulation like this.)

Offering Scouts does not change the game really. All you do is removing the the Stats and show them as text.

It does not change the game if I see
Speed: 20
or
Speed: A really fast player

Plus if you have too many stats your people have to read many things and its harder to compare players. Sure you can just use 3 different stats, but then you can also use 3 Number-Stats and have your "easier to understand game".

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The thing is that when you have a scout, you depend on his judgment and if he is a bad one, he can offer you not so good players. So, instead of looking for certain numbers you depend mostly on your staff.

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But it could take a whole season or two before you'll have any idea whether your scout is good or not, right? It just seems like you're significantly reducing the ability of the player to judge the way players interact, without adding something in return.

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But in the real world there is no a Search page where every manager types what he is looking for, and then there are 50 players to chose from. There are scouts roaming the football fields (just check how many are there in a school tournament for example) and their decisions are used to find youth talents for example. For example Manchester United are having 14(!) scouts roaming the area of Manchester. Bayer Leverkusen are having its own scout-depot in Brazil and so on.

If you want to sign someone, at least one of your staff (or you yourself) had to be seen the player in action. In FM (or Total Manager or whatever) you just go to the search screen and sign someone you never heard or seen. Is this real to you?

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Well it should not be such a big deal to alter that. Just make the skills of other playes not accessible for anyone but the manager of the team. And maybe an estimation of a skill is more what you are looking for. Like that you still have some information to make your line up with, but you dont see any numbers. You could use colored comlumns instead. And over time the estimated skill gets more and more accurate.
But that is not the main thing that bothers me about manager games. Its the intransparent engine, the results that seem to come out of nowhere. I think this should be the main objective if you want to program a manager game.
Actually this is one of my projects I have planned to do. I dunno how successfull it is going to be, but I am trying to program a whole simulation by itself. At least thats what I have in mind.
Anyhow, good luck with your project
cherio Woltan

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I thought about making a thread for every player on the field and one thread for the ball. Depending on the position of the ball and other players, every player will make a decision what to do next. Sounds crazy, huh :-)

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yap, because i dont see the need of that many threads here.
But I had just about the same ideas. However, I cut back on a lot of things, because it is highly unlikely that i will succeed. Therefore I cut back on the amount of players and their possibilities. I am focusing more on creating a real simulation, than a football engine ; )
Anyhow, if you have something to show, just private message me or keep me up to date.
Have fun
Cherio Woltan

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I did something, more just to show the layout and get some feeling. But I am thinking about switching the frameworks, to benefit from some of the new technologies, that came since I begun.

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Sounds like an excellent idea, provided that:

1. You don't design it more complicated that you are able to or prepared to implement

2. You don't go silly on technology (which you seem to be tending to)

Yes AJAX and JSF or whatever are very funky, but you really want something which
- Is going to work *well* for *everybody*
- Is going to be fairly quick to develop.

Much of the Java stuff requires either a very funky build environment, or a very large amount of boiler plate / red tape code. Neither is appealing.

This sounds like an ideal candidate for a "tick" based game. Such a game has all the game processing happening in "ticks" which happen at regular intervals. Such a thing would typically either use a server process which was continually running (but spends most of its time waiting) or a "Cron" job schedule.

Players should find it fun to play even if they only spend a few mins per day playing it - and the game should not *require* players to log on every day to play competitively (e.g. your team keeps playing games even if the manager is not there, the system selects players for you)

Mark

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Quote:
Original post by emomast
But in the real world there is no a Search page where every manager types what he is looking for, and then there are 50 players to chose from. There are scouts roaming the football fields (just check how many are there in a school tournament for example) and their decisions are used to find youth talents for example. For example Manchester United are having 14(!) scouts roaming the area of Manchester. Bayer Leverkusen are having its own scout-depot in Brazil and so on.

If you want to sign someone, at least one of your staff (or you yourself) had to be seen the player in action. In FM (or Total Manager or whatever) you just go to the search screen and sign someone you never heard or seen. Is this real to you?


The real world isn't designed to be fun. And I bet you that if real managers could get accurate numerical stats on their players, that is exactly what they'd use. The real world pays managers well to do this largely thankless task. You're not paying them, so why take away the fun in the name of realism?

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It does not matter how many people and time is used in the reallife for a task. or are you asking your players to wait 30 Minutes befor each playing session to "simulate" driving to work?

If you want to use the scouts then dont remove the numbers but insteat give your players the option to hire scouts.

The number of scouts determits the number of players that are shown in the "to-hire"-sheets of players.

Maybe if they have 5 Scouts they get a table of 50 random players the next day. With a feature like this you limit huge sheets but luck is a little bit more involved and you have your scouts :)



just my opinion...

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What do you mean by going silly on technology? You have to put the business logic somewhere, and I prefer doing it with Java. JSF/Ajax are used just to make things more "jazzy" :-) It is still stable and lot of people can play simultaneously.

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