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Yanks And Their Love Of Football...

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Post Farm0r

Joined: 08 Apr 2004
Posts: 613
Location: Huddersfield

PostPosted: Thu Dec 18, 2008 12:07 am    Post subject: Yanks And Their Love Of Football... Reply with quote

Review of Football Manager 2009 (called Worldwide Soccer Manager over there) from IGN USA that shows a real understanding of the football management simulation genre from our American chums...


This game gets a red card, and possibly a lifetime ban.

By: Avi Burk

What sports fan doesn't want to take control of his favorite team and guide it to a championship, or, better yet, a long string of championships? Well, if it means playing Worldwide Soccer Manager, you can count me in that number.

Worldwide Soccer Manager 2009 gives gamers the chance to manage and coach 5,000 soccer teams from 50 countries around the globe, giving them the chance to manage every aspect of their team's roster, field questions from reporters at their team's press conferences, and coach their teams in real time as each simulated game unfolds. What it doesn't do, more importantly, is provide any compelling reason to keep "playing."

Although the game's database of more than 350,000 real-life soccer players is certainly impressive, only the most diehard fans of the sport would be able to appreciate having such a massive pool of talent to sift through, and the casual fan would almost certainly find the task overwhelming – I did.

The game's incredibly complex menu system is very difficult to navigate, even with the on-screen help box directing you through the process. In short, this game is extremely difficult to simply pick up and play. If you're unfamiliar with the franchise expect to spend a significant amount of time simply trying to figure out how to navigate the menus.

Worldwide Soccer Manager's presentation problems don't end there though, once you finally make it to your team's first game you'll find that the player renderings and animations are awful, and the stadiums you play in lack any kind of personality or detail. Each field is bordered by fences and what appear to be unfinished stands, which don't have any fans in them. And, when the ball is kicked off of the pitch, it passes smoothly through the surrounding fences, right through the stands, and disappears from view only to return to the field in the same fashion, appearing magically from the stands and passing through the fences (and goals) on its way back into play.

Then there's the sound, or lack thereof. There is no soundtrack that plays while you work in the game's menus, which you'll spend the vast majority of your time in this game doing. There is no audio narration to accompany your participation in press conferences, even though your options for how to respond to each question is incredibly limited. There is no audio commentary to accompany the action in the simulated game's you watch/coach. In fact, the only sound we found in the entire game was the tones of fans cheering as each simulated game played out – which only detracts from the game's feel of authenticity seeing as there are no fans rendered in the stands.

As far as traditional gameplay goes, there really isn't any in Worldwide Soccer Manager 2009. Apart from managing your roster and coaching your team, there really isn't anything to do at all. So, unless you really enjoy clicking on menu buttons, you'll find your interaction with this game extremely disappointing.

However, if you're a big footie fan and big fan of sports simulation, you'll be extremely impressed with the depth of Worldwide Soccer Manager, which allows you to control just about every facet of your team and draw from a player pool that is simply mindboggling.

Closing Comments
This game obviously aims to provide the deepest soccer simulation experience possible for the sport’s most passionate and informed fans, but it offers little to nothing that would appeal to a casual fan of the sport or to the average videogame enthusiast. The menus are complex and difficult to navigate, graphics are terrible, the sound is non-existent and there is no traditional gameplay to speak of. I couldn’t imagine why anybody would prefer Worldwide Soccer Manager to FIFA 09 or Pro Evolution Soccer 2009.

©2008-12-05, IGN Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved

They scored it a 2 out of 10 when the UK part of IGN gave it 9.1 out of 10 and said...

FM09 is still easily the most in-depth, enjoyable and addictive way to pretend you manage a football team. When you have a formula as compulsively successful as this, one that guarantees you top the PC best-sellers list year on year, it’s churlish to suggest reckless tinkering for the sake of it.

After the Internet outcry, the US review was pulled with this explaination...

We missed the mark -- that's the only way to explain why we've pulled the U.S. review of Worldwide Soccer Manager 2009 off our site.

After seeing the community feedback and having more editors look at the title, we agree with the readers that our original review didn't give Worldwide Soccer Manager 2009 a fair shake. Unfortunately, our critical analysis of WWSM '09 focused more on what the author wanted it to be rather than what the product actually was. We review games at IGN based on their own merits, and agree that it was unreasonable to compare WWSM '09 with action-oriented sports titles like FIFA or Pro Evolution Soccer. Because of the unfair comparison, we have deemed the review unacceptable and have removed it from the site.

We extend our sincerest apologies to both SEGA and our readers for the mistake and confusion. Look for an updated and more accurate relation of IGN's view of WWSM '09 sometime in the near future.

Now I don't even like football but I know that the Football Manager games (formerly Championship Manager) are incredibly deep and addictive...I have spent hours trying to manage Halifax Town to the top. Pity it isn't more like FIFA though!
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