Another poor release from SI

User Rating: 4 | Football Manager 2014 PC

Last year SI released FM 2013 to much anger and annoyance from the players, and rightly so. The bugs were many and the match engine, a major component of the game was truly awful. A few patches were thrown at it to make the thing at least playable and we were promised that all those issues would be sorted for the next years version. So here we are. SI have just released FM 2014 and a quick glance at the forums will tell you all you need to know. The game as a whole has more bugs than FM 2013 had on release and the much anticipated match engine is worse than last year. The players are far from happy. It would take too long to catalogue all the problems but at the moment the game is only playable if you are the kind of person that doesn't mind pain and suffering.

From players that simply haven't got much of a clue what a football is ( minutes into the match your players will be struggling to get scores above 6.2 ) to defenders that are so bad it's funny to watch, and I am being serious. Defenders that run into the post, go walkabout, stand and watch the ball roll calmly past them or at the other extreme attempt to break legs on a regular basis. Then we have red cards aplenty being handed out like they are going out of fashion, offside decisions that defy logic and goalkeepers who have no idea where the box ends, resulting in them getting one of those red cards for running out of it while carrying the ball. Not to mention the throw-ins that get taken from inside the field of play. I could go on and on but you get the message.

I am however starting to understand SI. You see, it would not be in their best interests to produce a brilliant game. If they did then where would the incentive be for anyone to buy next years cash cow? Instead it makes much more sense to release a far from perfect game and shroud it in promises for next year. Well we are onto you SI & Sega. You have been very clever, throwing a final patch each year that almost fixes everything, almost but not quite so that the punters scramble for the new version and beg you to take their money. You have been very clever with the marketing, ensuring high scores from official reviews but again, we all know that they are worth about as much as the reviews of beauty products that offer to make you twenty years younger, in other words worthless. And as more and more people realise these facts your products will become less and less desirable.

So what can you do about it?

You need a radical change of focus. Throw out the old way of working and sort it out. Instead of releasing a new version every year put the game on a four year cycle. Make it as perfect as you are able and rely on DLC's for further income over the course of the games life. DLC's like new leagues etc. People will pay for them I assure you. Then as technology improves and four years along release the new and very much updated version, again on a four year cycle with DLC's. Because if you continue to produce rubbish then sooner or later your ever so loyal fanbase will walk away.

So what advice can I give to anyone thinking of buying this game? simple. Wait six months and pick it up at a budget price at a time when it's playable.