In all my analysis of Football Manager (and I have been analyzing it for many years, believe me) I have always talked about the delusional addiction to which you expose yourself with this game. And I’ve always seen it as a good thing: if a game keeps you glued to the monitor until dawn, something is doing well.

In Sports Interactive, however, they are aware of the less romantic consequences of all that: angry girlfriends and coexistence problems, mothers who end up throwing the shoe at you so you can leave the damn machine, lack of time because of work or studies and even fattening due to excess potatoes and donuts, which by the way make those lonely and epic nights very pleasant. But this is another issue.

“There are many exciting new features in FM 2013, but the star – and the one that deals with the above – is the Classic mode.”

There are many interesting new features in FM 2013, but the star – and the one that deals with the above – is the Classic mode. It would be a kind of lite version; like the usual way but with some cuts. I heard that and I laughed with a condescending expression: poor those who do not understand what the thing is about. But I was wrong. The Sports Interactive movement has been very intelligent and instead of making a mode for dummies they have come up with a more direct proposal, designed for those who do not use or will not use some of the layers that the game offers. They’ve removed just enough depth that it’s not too noticeable and instead made access a lot easier.

The news is organized a bit like Twitter … but without so many mentions of Gandía Shore.

This is best explained with examples and going over a bit what they have removed and what they have put, so let’s get to it. The workouts, for example, are not individualized in this classic modality, but you give a series of general indications to the whole team, such as what they have to work on and the intensity with which they should work. You don’t get as many messages in your inbox, the menus are clearer. The scouting system has also been simplified, and you can delegate some functions to the new figure of the Sporting Director. The talks before, during and after the game are also eliminated, and you can even simulate results.

Analysis of Football Manager 2013Statistics are presented in a friendlier way in Classic Mode.

Let’s say that, ultimately, it’s as if you delegate all the secondary jobs and eliminate all those little nuance options that you don’t really know how they affect the game. If before you delegated your assistants with good equipment, then you trusted them and surely they did it well. If you did it with a small team that has a pseudo-amateur staff … they would make you every trick that was to send them to Siberia with a kick. Is it a drama, this change? Not at all; In fact, I’m sure that many of you will get hooked on the saga again, if you had left it, because you are no longer bombarded with so much information and you can continue to have a fairly exhaustive control of everything that happens. You can sign, reorganize tactics, give instructions during games, talk to the board, open new markets and all those things that we love so much. Before, sometimes you had the feeling that Football Manager had become too big, something that required too much attention if you wanted to succeed.

The traditional mode is still there, of course, with all that we just said that has been eliminated in the Classic and with some new features. Training, for example, is now organized around a calendar and it is much easier to organize.

Visually it has also taken a leap forward, with more colorful and showy menus, with design details that do not feel bad and a smart way of organizing information. Between game and game we can browse news of interest, such as results from other teams or movements in the transfer market, through an interface reminiscent of a sports website.

“For many, Classic Mode is how Football Manager should have always been.”

Analysis of Football Manager 2013The redesign of the menus looks great on him.

The game engine is still pretty fair, but we already know what we’re going to do. They have added animations and refined some modeling, but don’t expect anything that comes close to realism – and it doesn’t need it too much either, although it clearly has to move towards that in the years to come. What is very good is that the orders during the game are more agile and the options are more extensive. It is especially useful to be able to read in real time the comments that your assistants are making to you: that if the center forward is not very comfortable because balls are not reaching his foot, that if we are wasting the bands … you will see if you listen to them or not.

Football Manager 2013 is perhaps the version that most justifies its purchase in recent years. They have improved online competitions – now we can play on Steam against friends, make leagues, compete against them with the teams we have in our games – they have added a few challenges and have considerably improved the general design of the menus. The most interesting thing is, however, the surprising Classic Mode: there you have a reason to give it a try if you have never tried it and it scared you so deep or if you had left it because it took too long. Winning a Champions League in a couple of afternoons is possible.

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