FM2007 promises hours of addiction and entertainment and in both cases meets this boast and does not disappoint its fans
Football Manager as ever comes with its impressively large database containing hundreds of leagues, thousands of teams, and hundreds of thousands of players. The many teams will cater to your many needs be they to spend millions with Chelsea, bring your home town team to the forefront of global football or just taking the challenge of bringing a minuscule blip on the football radar to the pinnacle of the Champion’s League.
The management interface implements drop down boxes and links situated at prime locations to make navigation of the game much more simplistic and easier to grapple with. Tactically the game is superb, making changes using the tactics page shows when it comes to match time, and in match you can see where your teams weaknesses are and change accordingly. Of course don’t expect and easy ride. The AI of the game is responsive and well coded and will see your tactics and counter them with what they see fit. Also the AI works exceptionally when it comes to transfers and other communications between User and CPU controlled teams being both fair and taking into consideration many different factors such as club rivalries.
The in match engine is rendered onscreen as a 2D pitch with markers indicating players and officials. Although many of its competitors have 3D match engines it can be argued that the 2D engine is more effective, it takes much less time to load, gives a better overview of what is transpiring and each player is easily identifiable.
The game also contains online features which can add length and community to the experience, however online games can be very difficult to initiate and set-up, it requires one user to act as the server and all users must run the same patch.
Graphically the game does not amaze due to its nature as a Football Management sim, however it does meet its purpose with aplomb. All menus are clear and crisp giving the game a professional feel that allows the gamer to feel at ease with the game and not constantly distracted with the blandness of the interface. As previously said the game engine is 2D but this in no way damages the playability of the game compared to its competitors but instead enhances the experience. The game features photos of players and logos of the teams in many cases but some do not (the one glaring example is the English Premiership). However this problem can be rectified though downloads that can be found online which add files to the database that will incorporate these features. This modding feature extends to many other parts of the game like the interface and sounds.
The game features little sound but the sound that exists is to the highest standard. The match sounds are the primary example and are both relevant and intuitive. The sound will change should the situation in the match change, such as if the home team scores it will be greeted by rapturous applause but if the away team scores then a quiet rumble will ripple from your speakers. Many teams will have their respective chants played during the match which adds to the realism of events.
For value this game cannot be beat its length is incomprehensible as you can take thousands of teams through seasons that can span decades if not centuries. The variety available ensures that a single style of play does not become repetitive and each situation you are thrown into means that you must devise a new way to conquer the championship and please your board and fans. This game will easily keep you content until the next instalment arrives in the following fall.
In conclusion this game promises hours of unparalleled addiction and immense entertainment and in both cases this game meets this boast and will not disappoint.