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Leverkusen Leopards

Germany   jack6 owns a supporter account   jack6 is a Knight of

Joined: 2011-09-05/S00
Posts: 7166
Top Manager

posted: 2016-04-04 08:32:05 (ID: 100072735) Report Abuse
Chapter 07 - Roster Management over the seasons
Version 1.0 - 21.04.2016

An essential part of the game is of cause to build your team up to a certain level and once you reach that, to keep the level up over several seasons, if not for as long as possible.
There are some ways to do this and all have pros and cons.

You have 70 roster spots and you do need a quite few players ready to play in this game.
You can decide to do substitutions not very often, or never, but that will take a toll on your training progress, since you will have to train PC more often. It will also take a toll on your players performance in the last quarter of every single game, since they get more and more tired.
So overall you will need some backups for each position.
On which level those should be and could be, is up to you.

My take on this is, regarding minimum amount of players to play this:
QB: 2, RB: 2, FB: 1, WR: 5, TE: 1, OL: 7
DL: 7, LB: 6, CB: 5, SF: 3
P: 1, K: 1

That's a total of 41 players and you could reduce it by 1 if you decide to make a P/K hybrid.
You can also decide to use just 1 QB the whole game, it’s an often used strategy, with all the risks I did mention above regarding fatigue and performance.

Still, the engine will fill your game roster up with 55 players, so regardless of the numbers you put into the depth chart by yourself, if you have additional players on the roster they will end up on the game depth chart and might even play, and even worse, they will play, out of position.

Assuming you try to have at least 55 players worth a spot on the field, it leaves you with 15 spots left on the roster for developing players.

For some this seems to be way more than needed, for some it's too less.
It all depends on your roster building and roster managing strategy.

This strategy is quite heavily linked with your training and coaching strategy, but it also has a managing part which goes further than just thinking about where to train what and who.
It included thinking about when to train who up to a level needed and also where to get that new player in a few season for another player leaving soon.

Player Sources
Remember you have basically 3 sources for players, Youth Academy, Draft and Transfer Market.

Youth Academy
What comes out of your Youth Academy is totally in your hand except the youth pull lottery each update. But getting 4 to 8 good enough youth players for further examination is quite likely with 24 updates and if not, you still can try to buy a few. Main pre condition for that is a Youth Academy on the highest level and a level 20 scout. If you decide to have less in one or both sections, the youth pull quality will suffer. With the new premium Youth Academy you will not get additional players to choose from.
At the end you will have some players out of your Youth Academy, if you did not decide to ignore it totally and you even have the chance to build them on the best fitting position.

The draft is quite tricky and can result in 3 very good players or in 3 busts. In general at least 1 of those 3 players should be worth a career on your roster and sometime even more.
The position you get is sometimes not the most desired, depended on your draft strategy, but normally you should either get a player good enough for the job or at least good enough to coach him into that job.

Transfer Market
The transfer market is the trickiest one. There are managers which have a golden hand for buying cheap and selling with a huge profit, there are some who do it the other way around and there are some who do even ignore the market at all, or which do just buy players or just sell players.
In general the market does sell players from other teams and regularly also delivers players from former teams as free agents in all forms of quality, or even new build free agents as good or even better as draftees.
The prices are a headache. At some points you get good players for very little money and sometimes a bidding war rages over a good but not VERY good player and that guy changes teams for a 9 figure amount of money. Normally does a good player get some attention and if you like to have him there are several teams interested which does push the price.
My advice here is, if you try to build a team around players from the market, be patient. It will save you a lot of money and even if it seems at the start that money is flooding in when the stadium is fully build, once you reach a good strength level with your team, coaches and players wages will eat your income away and you have to finance all additional expenses with the rest if there is even some.
The transfer market can be your best friend, if you did start your franchise and you already have some income from the stadium. You can get there some really nice prospects for something between 5.000$ and 20.000$ per player which do either have better skills than your initial roster players or they have a better potential than your players. But be warned, don’t dive too deep to early, wages and prices can kill you, especially if you try to grab high skilled veterans.

Which kind of player is needed?
You will have to decide, which way you would like to fill your roster over time and with which kind of players. Before I get into the “which way” part, a short word on the “which kind” part.
There are some values which are fixed and can’t be trained, mainly TW, INT and TAL.
TW will help to speed up the training (the more the better) and will give a bonus on PC on season rollover, if the value is 35+, or will give small loss on rollover, if the value is below 35. Training speed has to be translated in two ways.
First you get per player more training in the same time compared to a player with less TW on the same position.
Second it will give a player the chance to train more skills to a higher level than a player with less TW on the same position. That may sound obvious, but it’s imported to understand the consequences.
A high TW player should always be the first choice, but if you think about which position it helps most think about positions with a lot of A- und B-Skills.
For example a FB or TE would need higher TW than a WR to have all A- and B-Skills on the same level, because they just need more skills to be trained on that level (means they need like 20 to 40 points more lifetime training progress).
INT is also a helpful value, but you won’t find all 50 points genius players. Some have less than 20. It’s up to you to decide whether you let a perfect athlete go, because his INT did not match the limit of maybe 30, 40 or 50 which you did set yourself. There are positions which seemed to have limit need for high INT players, like RB, FB, TE, WR, DL or CB are possible. I’m not saying you should use every low INT player, but you should also think twice before selling or cutting a low INT player which has other benefits.
TAL is quite easy to get. TAL does limit your players non-physical skills max value and the higher it is, the higher can those skills be trained. The question you have to think about is, how high is high enough and how high is not high enough.
You don’t find 0.5* TAL players very often and they will cap at 36.5. That is for most managers not high enough, because of the strength of competition. Most like 40+ on their oldest players on the A- and B-skills.
You also don’t find 5* TAL players very often and they cap at 50. Most managers will tell you that this is normally too high, because they do cost a very high wage and the higher wage does not justify in most mangers opinion the few points more on skills value.
The community will very likely set the limit somewhere between 2* and 4* to be acceptable, the upper limit is of cause 5*, since no manager HAS to train their player that high, but they CAN.
Bottom line is, think about the quality you would like to see and this quality level is for sure different per position.

Which way should I get a player?
Now back to the “which way” topic. Here are some strategies I did see over the time.

Build trough the draft:
That is for some time a buzz word in the NFL and the same is valid for some managers in RZA.
At the start is the draft you best friend, the players are way better than your initial roster material and you get 3 per season. Yeah!
Of cause it is obvious that the draft alone will not keep your roster alive, you need some sort of extra source, which is usually the Youth Academy.
The problem with this approach is, later in your career, when your players got coached to a higher level, like an average of 40 skill points, a draft player is never an instant starter.
He is a prospect, maybe a backup, which needed a few seasons training to be as good as your starter.
On top comes the fact that not every drafted player is worth the effort of training.
Many do lack the needed physicals, or do need a lot of training to get a clear picture on their physicals.
With an age of 19 to 23 you might even end up with a quite old guy which does only play for 7 seasons, instead of 10+.
Since the draft is more than sorting and scouting, that selection process to get the needed and desired player is at bottom line a matter of luck.
Considering this all, you need a good drafting strategy and a good coaching strategy to keep your team on top for many seasons.
The good thing is you get your players for free, which makes this a quite cheap approach and that helps with coaches and wages.

Build through the Youth Academy:
This is similar to the draft strategy, but flips the priorities.
While the draft managers do focus on the draft and try to get some extra bodies out of the Youth Academy, this path here does try to get as much positions filled from the rookies and the draftees are only a nice addition, which might solve a problem or two per season, but most of the draftees won't play for long on the roster, if ever.
If done right, it's possible to get 3-5 good players per season, sometimes more.
That also not enough to fill all spots, but close.
Biggest problem here is the available material.
Sometimes you don't get fast players, or strong ones, and dreaming of the fast AND strong one is almost useless.
And you need some time to get a clue about these qualities if you work with youth pulls.
Buying draftees for the YA could help here, but those don't come cheap.
If you don't dive into the transfer market, this approach is also a cheap one, which might even produce a profit.
All you need is a good YA strategy and a good coaching strategy.
Normally this approach does come with a problem of roster size and prospect development.
In this game, the old ones are the best and the young ones are the future stars becoming the best at some point.
With 70 players on the roster, you need spots free for each rollover and that means, around 4-7 players have to leave, each season (considering a big class from YA and some draft players).
Which players will you cut? The young, or younger ones, or the old veterans who are the backbone of your team?

Build trough the market:
This is not easy and has some cons, but if done right, save you of a lot of trouble.
There are several different approaches on this take alone, usually based on the coaching strategy.
A manager with some high class coaches will lack development on some positions. This can be mitigated by buying veterans on the market, which do come cheap sometimes, and sometimes not.
The rule of thumb is, the fewer seasons left in the tank, the cheaper they get.
Or you buy physically build players with very high TW and young age and build them on the high class AC positions and shift them at mid age or later to train from that point on without coaches.
Needless to say, those young players do often not come cheap also.
A manager with a more balanced coaching approach might just look for the best players available and might buy a player whenever he is in the desired price range.
The trick is then to manage the roster effectively, which means either shifting players from one position to another to fill needed or to fit better, or to adapt playing style and playbook based on available players.
Saying all this, where is the trouble saving?
If done right, you get all the players you need and want from the market and can ignore the YA and the draft. The problem is that this needs a lot of patience and work (and probably also money).

It's might not be wise to do that approach 100%, but it's possible to use it from time to time.

Fine tuning:
Once you did decide your main path (and you will probably use a mixture out of the 3 paths above with leaning on one of those strategies as main recruiting tool) the main trick is to have your team in championship form.
I did come across two main strategies here, waves and revolver.

Basic idea here is that you need some time to build a championship team and you need not only good starter, but almost as good backups. With 55 players almost on the same level, you have to let something go, in this case, a constant addition of young players.
You start with a quite high amount of young or younger players and do train them, season over season, and you don’t add many, if any, new players after that. You have maybe 8 to 15 player the same age.
You try to push the high level phase of each player that way that as much of the players as possible are on the same level or just a bit less. With so many players in so high wage regions, you will be very likely in red figures over a few seasons, once the main part of the roster gets old.
Once this gets out of control and you do see the end coming, most of the high wage players get sold, cut or retired and the team can start building again.
With 55 players on the depth chart, it’s not uncommon to have 4 to 6 ages building the major amount of players on that roster.
The rest of the roster is a mixture of bought, drafted or developed players to fill the gabs and to provide starter in the rebuild phase and backups or prospects in the championship phase.
Some managers did and do master this, based on some basic rules. First the building phase initial setup could be quite expensive, but timed and done well, not neck breaking, because you buy potential, not starter player, and the prices on the market do change often and you might set a focus not many other players do have.
The few seasons building the momentum are then quite cheap, since most players are not that expensive. Money comes in quite well.
Once the main part of the roster gets over a certain level, development might get slowed down or B-Skills are trained, until the first real punches can be thrown.
A successful team can make a lot of money in the playoffs and with a team build out of many great players, it's likely that deep runs in Supercup and league playoffs are possible.
When a championship was won, the next season also the champ of Champ cup comes in addition. In that phase it's still possible to earn money, or at least not being in the red figures.
The real competition starts when the majority of the roster gets new contract and the wages start getting out of control. The team is in red figures and depended on the success, this is a tough one, or not so tough.
Deep runs in all competitions will bring in enough to keep most teams running, but every season this gets harder and a single loss in the playoffs can cost major money.
Latest when the first few players start to retire, the team get regrouped and based on this strategy; it can happen that half of the team gets redone.
If the team was an Elite team at that point, it's likely it will drop back to level 1 and will need some seasons to get back on top.

Basic idea here is, to have the next replacement ready, when the old guys call it quit. Every time.
This takes a lot of planning effort and good training management, since not every position is trainable the same way, thanks to the AC system.
You start with a few players and each season does add 4 to 7 additional players on positions needed.
A strategy for positions with only a few players is needed, the positions with a lot of players, like liner, do get every season a player in average.
The positions with a few players can be filled by adding only every 3 or 4 season a player, or they can be filled by switching older players from positions with a lot of players to that position with a few players and train them INTO this position.
Example: You might need 2 good QBs on your depth chart and should have 1 to 2 as prospects, so you add just every 3 to 4 seasons a QB to you roster and do have at some point players age 20, 23, 26 and 29. The two oldest should be the best.
Or you need 3 to 4 safeties on your team and don't have a AC there, but do have a LB-AC? Switch regularly LBs to SF, better the really good ones. Say you have LBs age of 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30. Switch the 28, 29 and 30 ones to SF and build new prospects on LB until they get old and good enough to play SF.
This does have the con, that the position you strip loses some real contributors, but it gives you on the other hand quite well trained players on every position.
The whole process will bring you team to a certain level and keeps your team on that level.
You need good play calling and a bit of luck to succeed on the highest level, because a Wave-player can exceed revolver-players from time to time and with 32 teams in a league, there might be a wave-player on a peak season just ready to fill the gap when the last one did decide to rebuild.
The trick is to excel in those seasons the wave-players are weak and stand your ground on the peak seasons.
The limit of this strategy is the coaching strategy.
At some point you will reach your peak and from that time on, if you don't switch your coaching strategy, that peak will be held, more or less.
There is also a problem with your roster. If every season 4 to 7 new players do come to the roster, 4 to 7 players do have to leave your current one and you have to decide which one. Normally that includes some of the starters, because they are the old ones.

Losing players:
Of cause you will have players leaving the team over the season. There are four ways to lose a player. Retiring, selling, cutting and leaving because of no renewed contract.
Retiring is quite easy. With age of 30+ do players think about retiring, the older the more likely they will decide to retire. There is a small chance that even in that case the player will play another season, if paid right. With age of 35 they will decide to call it quit at season rollover for sure. You can identify the retiring players by a remark on their players detail page near the comment section, or on the roster page they are marked different than regular players (non HR department managers will see a red marker, HR department managers will see a blue/violet marker)

Selling is the case which will happen also quite often. You might sell Youth Players, Seniors with limited upside in compare to another player you might have acquired not long ago, Seniors which don’t fit into your new concept, Seniors which are expendable to create roster spots for the next generation and also Seniors which might just have a season or two left in the tank but became too expensive or you need the roster spot. In general will younger players generate higher income if trained well enough and good capped youth players will also get good offers compared to uncapped or suspicious looking youth players (like a SPE 35 / STR 35 player with no add).

Cutting is the easiest, but it might cost you. The players do demand some compensation to leave the team. Not THAT much, but still something. That’s important to know if you have to cut players because of financial issues (see Chapter XX – finances). Especially if you are a HR department manager the contract length does have a huge impact on demanded money for voiding the contract. Some managers do cut players right after the last regular season game or their last playoff game, when it is clear the player won’t fit into next seasons roster (for example do they retire) and there is no chance to sell them. The earlier you cut them, the more you will save. But cutting retiring players before the rollover does affect your possible HOF candidates. Only the retiring players leaving on season rollover will get a chance for a HOF spot. Long term contract players are usually worth a dime on the transfer market and usually get sold, not cut. But if you have to cut a long term contract player, expect a big price to do so. Keep that in mind when you do contract prolongations.

No renewal
In case of HR department activated you do have also the possibility to lose players by not renewing their contract. In that case they will leave at season rollover. It might happen that you don’t want to renew their contract or it can happen that you and the player did not agree on a new contract in the 5 possible offer tries and the player decided to leave. In both cases the player gets normally sold before being cut, but this depends on the timing of the negotiations. The last phase of the season prior to rollover is dominated by a closed transfer market (one real live week prior season rollover, so two training updates) and that can indeed lead to such a situation that you can only cut the player or wait for the rollover and he leaves automatically.

Maximizing the roster:
It might be a plan to just ignore specific positions, like TE or FB and focus on the positions you can support better and add players there in higher numbers.
This will reduce your possible playable formations.

No TE, you can only play with:
Flexbone (RB, FB, WR)
Wishbone (RB, FB, WR)
Shotgun 4WR (FB, WR)

No FB, you can only play with:
Pro Set (TE, RB, WR)
Singleback Big (TE, RB, WR)
Singleback Spread (RB, WR)

No RB, you can only play with:
Goalline O (TE, FB, WR)
Shotgun 2WR (TE, FB, WR)
Shotgun 4WR (FB, WR)

There is no formation without WR, but you can try to use only a few by avoiding the 4 WR sets and focus on 2 WR or less formations:
Big I (TE, RB, FB, WR)
I-Formation (TE, RB, FB, WR)
Pro Set (TE, RB, WR)
Flexbone (RB, FB, WR)
Wishbone (RB, FB, WR)
Goalline O (TE, FB, WR)
Shotgun 2WR (TE, FB, WR)
Singleback Big (TE, RB, WR)

If you don’t want to skip any position at all, there is also the chance to just limit the needs on each position. Some positions do demand more than one (in case of RB and TE) and more than two (in case of WR) and if you avoid such positions, you might save yourself some backups. There is no formation which does need 2 FB.

Two TEs needed:
Shotgun 2WR (TE, FB, WR)
Big I (TE, RB, FB, WR)
Singleback Big (TE, RB, WR)
Goalline O (TE, FB, WR)

Two RBs needed:
Wishbone (RB, FB, WR)
Pro Set (TE, RB, WR)
Flexbone (RB, FB, WR)

4 WRs needed:
Shotgun 4WR (FB, WR)
Singleback Spread (RB, WR)

Overall, the key on those approaches is to focus on your strength in ACs and recruits and to avoid half trained players as workaround. It’s always best to have the 11 highest trained players on the field.

It’s not that easy to do the same on defense.
There are only 4 player types in general, DL, LB, CB and SF, so it will never happen you can get rid of any of those positions. There is also the problem with the formations and their basic needed. Of cause you can try to avoid a NT to use and you can try to avoid a fourth very good LB as starter, but overall you better think about several formations to use and the bottom line is, you do need a lot of players and whether they do play starter on some formations and only backup on others is a decision for playbooks, not roster management.

The old ones
It might also be a good plan to actually planning with some 30+ players regularly. Not many players do leave on their own after their age of 30 season, and the older they get, the more likely they leave.
But it’s quite common to have some 30+ year old players on the roster and some might get cut or sold regularly to have roster space for the next generation.
With the strategy of planning with older players there comes the possibility to have fewer younger players. The same chance is also the major risk. Nothing does prevent your three 30+ starting WRs to call it quit the same season and you might not have good substitutions ready on the roster.
So on one hand you have the chance to have need of fewer players every season, which means you can focus on a few players in the YA for example, but on the other hand it might happen that your championship team loses quite a lot after season rollover, because they do retire all the same season.

Wage management
A great part of the game is based on finances and a great part of that is based on the players wages. There are two models to pay your players, the initial wage system and the HR department approach.

Initial wage system
That’s quite easy as written in the manual. The average of the highest two skills beside STR and SPE do set the wage for the next season after season rollover. The wage is than fixed for that season. So it is wise to look at every player a few weeks before rollover and evaluate the training goals and the wage goals.
Does that player really need a push on his maximum skill in the last few weeks? Or is it wise to train other skills? The answer is not always the same and you have to be aware that you can’t take away the level the player is at that moment, but you can keep him on that level, if needed or wanted.
If you train his maximum skill further, you should know the consequence, so calculate the wages. A small increase can mean thousands of more wages over a season, if not millions.

HR Department
If you decide to use the HR Department you have to activate it once and there is no turning back. Honestly, the main con on that approach is, you have to negotiate every players wage over several seasons and the big time major pain is the initial negotiation of EVERY player on the roster. In average I have to negotiate 40% of all players contracts before season rollover and I think that’s quite normal. That means around 30 times doing the negotiating process, which is sometimes a pain in the a*peeeeeep*.
As positive effect you will for sure have smaller wages over the seasons.

To give you a picture regarding the consequences of changing to that system, here is a brief overview.
As initial impact of that switch you will see, that you will have to negotiate ALL contract of your players until season final.
Such negotiations can happen at any point during the season, so no rush needed, it might get a lot of work, if you decide to switch a few days or even hours before season rollover. Because any player without a new contract (marked then with a red background colour behind the then shown season number of his expiring contract) that player will become a free agent and you get NOTHING in compensation. So you better get your roster in order before that rollover happens.
The negotiation does happen in an extra pop up window and shows the current numbers, give you a drop down for contract type and shows the expected wage based on the OLD system.
Depended on his age and your amount of already finalized franchise contracts you should find a 2 year contract (this and another season), a 3 year contract (this and another 2 seasons), a 4 year contact (this and another 3 seasons, franchise) and a 5 year contract (this and another 4 seasons, franchise).
Please be aware that if you negotiate before season end that “this season” part of the contract means really the current running season, so you basically do negotiate a one year shorter contract, because the contract will start running after you found an agreement and since the rollover does come quickly, that first season is gone quickly.
As basic rule for negotiation before season rollover it did quite good work with the following parameters:
A two or three season contract gets an agreement if you offer around 90% to 92% of the estimated wage based on skills (that’s the OLD system), negotiated shortly before season rollover.
So if the skills do imply a 50.000$ for next season and you offer a new contract of two or three season (including the current) with 45.000$ to 46.000$ this should work.
A franchise contract is a bit heavier to negotiate, since they want more money.
A have a note which says a four year contract gets an agreement if you offer 95% to 100% from the estimated wage, negotiated shortly before season rollover. A five year contract works with 105% to 109% of the estimated wage, also shortly before rollover.
Some managers don’t like the fact that they do lose one year after rollover and do negotiate AFTER rollover (and the player has of cause no red signal for his contract BEFORE rollover, otherwise he would be gone after rollover).
They do sometimes even negotiate before season rollover a 2 year contract and do then negotiate a new contract after the rollover do have the player secured for 2 to 5 seasons.
I don’t do it that way, so I don’t have valid numbers on that scenario. But the ask wage will not go down. It was mentioned once that there is some kind of training estimation inside the wage demand, so be careful, if you try to test this. I once read, that a 5 year franchise contract AFTER rollover do get an agreement at 175% of the estimated wage, often for less, but I did not test this.

Regardless when you negotiate, you have 5 tries (the player will answer with his demand which is much higher than the estimated wage) and if you fail to come to an agreement, that player will leave the team for sure. No chance to keep him. If you still have some time, you might be able to sell him until season rollover, but if you do it as I do, negotiating in the last week before rollover, you better get that agreement, because the transfer market will be close then.
Be aware that older players will not negotiate a contract running beyond the age of 30. So if you try to make a 29 year old player a franchise player for 5 seasons, it won’t happen. You will only be able to offer a 2 year contract. Then, when he is 30, he will accept another 2 year contract and so on.
Since it is very likely that the older the more expensive the player will get, it’s better to use the limited amount of franchise contracts on players age of 25 or 26 and not on 20 year old rookies. Because once the wage is fixed, it stays fixed and if you can keep a player from wage point of view on his skill level a few seasons ago, the major saving do happen for the older players.
It’s also wise to think about the next franchise player prior you offer the contract. What I mean is, if you have to negotiate 40 new contacts a season you might have several players at the age of 25 or 26, but you might have only 1 or 2 free franchise contracts left. It’s wise to offer those contracts to those players which do demand the highest wage at the moment and will develop fastest or to the highest skill value during the contract length. It might even be smart to NOT offer any franchise contract in that season, because you know that next season you will have several much higher skilled 25 year old which will save you much more money.
Franchise contracts don’t have anything to do with respect or a deserving player. It’s a business instrument and that player will not be angry, if you offer him one, or not. ;-)
If you did for whatever reason overpay the player, like for example you did like to offer 100.000$ a week and you did insert and negotiate 1.000.000$ weekly offer, sell him or cut him, if the difference is too much. If the difference is small, like 20.000$ instead of 2.000$, think about it, normally this is “only” 1 to 2 seasons and you might accept the higher costs. Otherwise sell him or cut him. There is no way to renegotiate the contract, unless some unusual does happen (like 1 season, when all contracts were able to be renegotiated, due a reset by the admin to solve a bug, but such stuff does happen not often, almost never (well, happened again when Peter did adjust the wage system).

Overall you will be forced to make tough decisions over the seasons to come and you will have to weigh the future long term development against the short term push you might get if you keep your aging players on the roster. The game gives you a lot of chances to try several approaches, if you take your time. One thing is certain: you can’t turn around a roster in a season time. So take a look at your roster and start planning.

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Last edited on 2016-04-21 06:46:35 by jack6

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Leverkusen Leopards

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Top Manager

posted: 2016-04-04 08:32:11 (ID: 100072736) Report Abuse
Chapter 08 - Manage your Youth Academy roster
Version 1.0 - 26.04.2016

To build a good or even great football team, the Youth Academy will be a huge help to get good players.

As a first strategy all coaches can decide to

Don't Do IT!
That means, you can ignore the Youth Academy completely.
This does result in fewer expenses for the academy and less management effort on your roster regarding training and you are free to concentrate on different coaching tactics and facility setups.
On the other side of that path you don't get a few good or great prospects each season and you don't get additional players you might be able to sell on top.
Beside that you have to deal with players you have to get from somewhere each season and since you are left with transfer market and draft, it's pretty sure you will spend a lot of time on the transfer market.
That don't have to be a bad thing and also not really an expensive one, but it bears the risk to get only the player you find and can afford, not the ones you would like to have.

As long time veteran manager I would never suggest to work with that strategy, but it exists!

If you decide to use the Youth Academy at full level, here are some strategies for you.

Your coaching strategy will determine the upper and lower limit of any path you might chose here.
You can forget to have the fastest developing players when you have only ACs on CP 50s level.
On the other end you can forget to build all players rapidly by assigning extra training points to the max, if you have only 6 ACs.
You coaches will define the training speed on regular training and their amount as ACs and the CP-points of your HC will define the average amount of extra training points.
With this in mind, you can try to optimize the output of your academy.

The Greater the better:
With this you try to have 1 or 2 youth players per season which become starters very fast (or at least valuable backups) and are way better than your 1st round draft pick.
This means you will get your youth players at some point with an age between 16 and 20 and will try to get his physicals capped quickly, which is a general rule.
But then you will try to dump as many points into your 1-2 best players per season to have them on a high level once season rollover comes.
Keep in mind, there are 24 updates per season.
Depended on your coach setup, this can be a lot of points and you might be able to get a player with an average of 25 or even 30 on all his A-skills and maybe even B-skills, especially when you focus on just 1 player per season.
Sounds great?
There is a catch.
Just calculate 10 seasons you have for sure of a player with age 20, you get 10 players in 10 seasons.
Add 3 draftees per season and maybe 40% playing with 30+, you get 56 players.
That's barely enough to fill all needed positions.
Not all draftees will be ready to play, or even worth a roster spot, and then the roster gets very thin.
So you need some extra players.
You can buy them on the market, or you can try to find a compromise between 1 superstar player per season and maybe 2 very good ones.
I would assume that 2 very good ones can compensate a draft bust per season.
If you try to get 3 or more, you will end up on a different strategy.
The good thing with this strategy is, you will be very lucky to have a lot of young talents between 16 and 19 and can sell or fire the bad ones, once the become 19 or 20.
You just need 1 or 2 with age 20 and can therefore use 20 spots on the next generations.
Lots of players to choose from, if you find some.

Keep the revolver loaded:
If you aim for 3-5 players per season out of your Youth Academy, this is the way to go.
Find them, cap them and boost them.
But only as long as it's needed and where it's needed.
Depended on your training output and your extra training points you might be able to have some players leaving the academy with an average of 20 on all A-skills and maybe even the B-Skills without putting a single extra training point into them.
That saves points for the other ones.
Chances are good you can do this with those positions which do not require a lot of skills. QBs, RB, WR, LB, CB, SF and K, P or even K/P hybrids are candidates for such a job.
For all the rest, dump the extra points into them, until they are projected to be on that average level of 20 at season rollover.
The level aimed for at season rollover is very important, because such players might need only a few boosts, like 2 or 3 updates and extra points and will then reach that level on their own by regular training. You need to calculate that or make an educated guess.
Don't push them to 20 during the season and then look for the next guy, because that means you did put too many points already in that first player.
He will leave the academy way higher than level 20 and that means some other guy will eventually not make the cut.
If you do this right you get really 3-5 players per season and under the same math as above you get up to 70 players out of that school in 10 seasons, plus up to 30 draftees, which means you can sell or fire the worst ones and you still have more players than the 70 roster spots can take.
Under such conditions, you can have 2-4 starter worth players on every position, a lot of backups and a lot of prospects waiting to become backups and once a player leaves for retirement, the next in line will be there and you will fill this gap the next season out of the YA and the draft, keeping the revolver loaded and ready.
But of cause there is a catch.
This takes a lot of time and you also won't find all players you might need, or you won't be able to train them as you would like to.
Using up to 5 spots on the 20 year old players will leave the rest spots for fewer prospects which might not be good enough on their physicals.
There is also a chance that the players you would like to sell doesn't get much attention, because he is not good enough, yet.
You will likely only sell the worst of your class each season and those will maybe not getting all the buzz on the market. You will also very likely only later sell the worst of your old timers and mid level players, once you have a replacement or you need to make cuts for roster spots. Also those won’t get the same attention as Superstars.

Buy a star:
Not sure how many do this, but if you buy a draftee with age of 19 or 20 and you have a spot in the youth academy, you will be able to pimp him.
This will cost you some money, but the good thing is you will not be bothered with dumping too many extra training points into him.
So this is basically possible with 1 to 5 players out of your YA per season, only with the catch that you need an open spot to work with and you need the money to buy them.
There might be even a profit possible in that business, but it's a risky business.
Best bet from my side is, to use this for your personal roster and if you like to sell players, sell your other youth players or draft busts.

Ignore the young ones:
This is not proven to work, but it should, even with the new introduced premium youth academy the EXP gain of one season might be worth more than a few roster spot.
But let’s discuss the approach.
In general you are looking for young players, 16 years or 17 years old and you will try to get their red caps fast. The reason not going for older players is, they normally lack the physicals they should be trained to on that level already and they become a major gamble. Those 18+ players might have already some good A- or B-Skills, but they still need all the time available to get the caps known and that means you know only after 1 to 2 seasons, that the promising youth player is not so promising and you have to cut him at age of 20.
But it can happen that you do find 17 years old players which are as good or even better than former 16 year olds you had in your YA for a season or more.
It's pure math: You can assume around 10+ skill points per season (without premium YA), so if you find a 17 year old with the same values as a 16 year old plus 10+ points (in general on physicals), it would have been irrelevant to have the 16 year old on the roster for a season.
The 17 year old would be valued the same, but he wouldn't have blocked a roster spot for a season.
So this strategy does say, ignore the 16 year olds and star with 17 year olds.
Instead of having 5 different ages on the YA-roster, you just have 4, giving each age category an additional player in average.
The catch is you might not find enough of that category worth a second thought.
Of course you can try to buy some on the transfer market, but that's also no sure thing and might get expensive.

General 2:
With that in mind, here are some tips to work with.
The rule of thumb for physical
A rule of thumb is, you get 10+ skill points per season out of your training and the most of that will go into the physical skills.
I did set up this rule to evaluate my guys in a quick way.
Check physicals and Age -> 16 years start at season start with a minimum of 50 points in physicals (sum of SPE, STR and AGI) to be worth a spot, during the season this does rise until 60 at age of 17 at season rollover, and so on, with 18 70, 19 80 and 20 90 in theory.
As a formula you might use 50 + (# total trainings per season – # remaining trainings per season)/2 to check a value of a player during the season.

Now Check TW -> everything below 35 is normally a no-go for me, because if training speed and the missing or lesser PC u p d a t e on season rollover.
The player with the highest physical value compared to his age and highest TW gets the spot, which is normally a 16 or 17 year old one.
Remember that a player on a position you have an AC on does get a bonus!
So if 2 players are almost equal on paper and that weaker one is from an AC-position, the other not? Take the guy from the AC-position, if the gap is not too big between the 2 players!
Normally it does not come down to that situation, normally you just have 1 to 2 players worth a second look and it’s quite easy to decide and the bonus is only relevant if 1 of the players is on a non-supported position and even then the situation is most of the time quite clear, because the physicals do normally differ heavily and the decision is most of the time good physicals and lesser TW against lesser physicals and good TW. Good TW do in general make up those missing physicals, especially if this an AC position player.
If no player does fall into that roster and there are some great TW-players age of 18+?
Take one of those and hope for a special trait player or a hidden gem.
You might dump points in him to get him on the same level as your other players, or sell him, if possible. For me that almost never worked regarding keeping him, but maybe I’m just not willing to spend big on extra points on physicals.

As soon as the physicals are known in detail, try to find potential positions for him.
Because once you did decide which position he will play, you might stop training him on unneeded skills.

The non-physical skill training
In general, while you do train physicals, it's best to train VIS and/or POS as non-physical skill.
All positions do need those skills as A-Skills or B-Skills and those 10% per training do add some points over several seasons.

Don’t bother pimping physicals
You can use the extra training points also to speed up the physical cap finding process (until the player does reach a skill value of 35), but I don’t suggest this. Imagine the following scenario and you will see why I’m no fan of this.
You pull a great 16 year old player with nice INT, TW, Talent and maybe a Trait or even two. His physicals are summed up at 55 at season start and you decide to push SPE. So you train SPE and when he gets to 31 the skill gets yellow capped. You switch to STR and decide to push that also with extra training points. At value 32 the STR skill gets also yellow capped. Now you have dumped something of 10 to 20 extra training points into your youth player and you just figured out that he will be a 36/37 player, which is on every roster normally a cut victim. Those extra training points are gone and you have to start with an additional player, again.
You can push physicals per extra points only to 35 anyway, so after that, if they are uncapped, you still need to train them further and you are still at risk to have a 41/41 player.

Use your extra points wisely
The best way to use the training points is to boost the final development of your player which does leave the YA at season rollover. You KNOW his purpose, his caps, his skill needs. Perfect.
I suggest dumping the points on those skills your facilities don’t support often or your facilities or even your ACS do not support at all, which means you use your normal training with that 10% or even 21% bonus for some of his skills (like VIS or POS) and you use the training points on those without a bonus (like FOO or BLO or TAC).
Why that?
Of cause you could also dump all points and the regular training on one or two skills, but this will make your player more expensive than a more balanced approach. A player leaving the YA with one or two skills at level 30+ is way more expensive than a player with a value of 20 on several skills.

Of cause this is depends on your take and your goals with the YA, your players development strategy and with that specific player.
If you do only dump points on 20 year old players or already position bound 19 year old, you won’t waste any extra training points, which should be the goal. The rest is up to you.

Because of the TW value (35+), you should also not consider dumping extra training points on PC, even if it is possible until a certain level. You get PC on season rollover and you can deal with the missing rest later. The extra training points are way too valuable to boost PC.

Switching positions
Keep in mind that you can switch positions inside the YA as often as you like. So it makes sense to use the best AC you have supporting all physicals (like DL or LB) to train all players which need to find the caps. This will give you the fastest training.
Next, when the caps are known and you decided on the players position, switch his position to the best AC which does support one or two needed skills the best way and switch the position again, when you need to train a different skill later. Always use the fastest training on that skill.
Example: You have player and a great DL. You use him to train the physicals until STR and SPE do cap. Now you see, he might become a good OL, but you have only an OL coach 75% the CP value of the DL and 80% of the value of the FB and the RB AC. You decide to train the player further as DL to train VIS and POS until they hit the value 20. Once you are satisfied with the values you do switch to FB to train your future OL in BLO, slightly faster than he would have been with the OL-AC. When you did reach BLO at 20 you switch the player back to DL to train him in FOO as fast as possible.
If you would have trained him on the OL spot right from the start, he wouldn’t have been able to train all skills the same speed. Never.
So switching positions is a useful tool to optimize your training.

The Premium Youth Academy
This is very new and the effects are not that clear yet.
Still I got on my trainings an increase of 0.1 to 0.2 on regular training and a boost on my extra training points of about 25 points per update.
Of cause this is depended on my Coaches setup, but the numbers are promising.
It is also advertised to add more EXP and TC on your players, per update.
The whole thing does cost 500.000$ per u p d a t e or 12.000.000$ the season which is a huge financial risk.
This is not a tool to play with without thinking over the money.
You can deactivate it every week, but if you like to activate it again you have to play the same setup fee as for the first time, 2.500.000$. So don’t switch it on and off weekly. ;-)
Overall this can be a very useful tool, since it will help to find the caps faster and it will also produce better players, because the EXP gain will be for sure good over several seasons summed up.
Still you need the money to effort it and only time will tell, if it can be supported long time.
At the moment my estimation for this season and the next is all red. Lucky me I have some substance to burn. But for sure I will change my training and roster management approach a bit to keep the premium academy and to keep my roster on a high level.

Young Transfers
If you buy a young player age of 20 or younger and you have a spot inside the YA free, the player will join the YA, not your senior roster. Players of age 16 and 17 will join only the YA, so better have in that case a spot free. You need the spot on the daily u p d a t e available when they players movement is finalized. In need you will have to fire a YA member a day before the update.
Be careful with the auction end time, because sometimes this is close and prior to the u p d a t e date and that would mean you buy the player and then lose him on the same night during update.
The 18 to 20 year old ones can become a problem for 2 reasons.
Both are linked to the same problem, the limit on sending YA players to senior team.
First major problem is the limit itself.
If you did already used your limits or you already did plan to use all chances on existing YA players, the added new player from the transfer market (or one of your existing YA players destined to be send to senior team) will not get promoted. This is normally a problem for 20 year olds but can also be a problem with younger ones.
If you don’t have the maximum level of your Youth Academy already you can enhance it and get additional chances, but once you reached the maximum there is no chance to deal with this problem except to sell a player out of your YA, if you don’t want to lose him without a profit. The premium YA does NOT add additional chances, so don’t activate it for THAT reason.
The Second major problem is season rollover.
It can happen in the same context but before season rollover you do also have the problem that 1 week prior rollover the transfer market gets closed for new offers, so it can happen that you do buy a new 20 year old which joins the YA, you don’t have any chances left for promotion and you can’t sell him prior rollover because of closed transfer market.
Now that’s bad luck!
Except the YA-upgrade there is nothing you can do if this already did happen and the player is on your roster. Nothing. If the player will join in the next update, THEN you still have a chance.
What to do?
Buy more youth players which do also join next update. Normally there are plenty available.
What happens now is: Lottery!
Assuming you did add that one desired 20 year old and you did also buy an additional 18-20 year old joining the same night to close the open YA spot you have a 50/50 chance of keeping the 20 year old, because the engine will put whomever it processed first into the YA and the other one will land on the senior roster. If you buy even more players, you can even have a 66/33 chance or higher.
The best way to avoid this stuff is to close the spot a day before the desired 20 year old does arrive and all is fine. Buy a player for a few bucks and fire him a few days later or if you have still a YA player on your scout list, s e l e c t one and close the gap.

Now what to do with more open gaps?
Buy more young players to fire later. Because otherwise that desired young player will end up on your YA roster and you can never get him to senior roster. Never.

So be a manager and manage your roster, carefully.

Kommentare bitte hier / Comments please here

Last edited on 2016-04-26 08:03:26 by jack6

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posted: 2016-04-04 08:32:16 (ID: 100072737) Report Abuse
Chapter 09 – The lottery of the draft
Version 1.0 - 03.05.2016

The draft is not only a cheap way to get probably good players, it's also a chance to build the future of your team.
Don't expect to get THE great player(s) in your first draft, or later. The amount of really good players can be counted with one hand or maybe two per draft. Sometimes you do get a player which could be developed into a great player if his physicals don’t cap too early, but that’s a lottery.
For the first draft overall, depended on your starting date, you might not have much time to prepare and you will very likely lack all the essential tools to judge the players the way you will do or like it in seasons to come.
You will very likely not have coaches, maybe no scouts and even not really a clue which position is needed most at that moment.

The very first draft:
For beginners I can only give the advice to look for physicals, INT, TW, EXP and age. Use Traits if you like as decision maker, if two players are quite equal, but that does not happen often.
Useful positions for the start are Linebackers and Liners, if available.
Don't go too much on QBs, they do lack most of the time at some areas and are not essential at the start. My opinion. Keep in mind, that this is NOT real live football, where you need a leader on the field. You are the leader and the engine does simply simulate the games based in skills and coaches CPs. No leadership needed. You do need players with good skills which do make an impact early and which you need in big numbers. LBs and Liners. Most of the time even the OLs do not come with the physicals the community wants them to have, so you will most likely get the best bang for your buck on LBs and DLs on your first draft.
That doesn't mean all other positions do suck, it's just the case that not often do really good ones pop up. Defense liners and Linebackers do come it bigger numbers, so chances are good there are some really good ones in the draft, while RBs or SFs as example are not that often and therefore can be not top level.
The rule of thumb for beginners is probably to take the best player available in terms of physicals, INT, TW, EXP and age (means the younger the better).
If that's a RB, fine, a QB, nice and a LB is also great.
Be aware that the physicals are a lottery in terms of caps.
You see only the value you have him scouted (or downloaded as csv-file), but that value can be red capped, yellow capped or uncapped.
In general can red caps happen with 35+ value, yellow caps can happen with 30+ value and everything less is for sure uncapped, but you will not know their caps until you train their physicals high enough to reveal them.
What can happen is that you pick a player in the first round with good physicals and the hope he will get them higher trained and he is all red capped and you do draft a player in the third round with obvious not so good physicals but the do turn out to be uncapped or only yellow capped and when fully developed the physicals do turn out to be better than the first round player has. Keep in mind that this takes time, sometimes several seasons, so the younger the better. A 23 year old prospect which does need physical training will never become a star on a matured roster. Before he can switch to develop his A-skills he has to train his physicals up and worst case is, that he is 25 at the time he can proceed on the A-skills and is 3 to 5 seasons behind a Youth Academy player or a young draftee.
With no guarantee there seem to be some “rules” regarding physicals.
If both are 45+, it’s almost sure both are capped, if one is uncapped it will cap soon.
If one is 45+ and the other 35+, it’s also almost sure the higher value is capped, and the lower value is a gamble. Can be uncapped, yellow capped or even red capped.
If both are 35+, there is a chance for at least one being not capped, eventually both. Big gamble.
Values below 35 do have a big potential for not being yellow capped. Those players will have to be trained for some time and can have very good physicals. Still a gamble.

A word on EXP
Experience is highly regarded in the community and some do see it as the major factor, even higher than physicals. For sure it is a factor and the more the better. Whether you want it to be your major deciding factor is up to you.
You will find in the draft a various range of players with different EXP values.
What you should keep in mind is, that a player with low EXP will need a lot of time to gain that EXP (means he needs to play a lot of games) so if you like an older player because of his physicals and other skills, be sure he has a good EXP value, because he will not play as many seasons as a young player of age 19.
On the other hand it is possible to draft a low EXP player, but be sure he is young, since he needs time to develop into the player you want him to be. The problem here is, that most of the time those players do need also time until they are on the level to play in the regular team, so for several season those player might only play friendlies and BOT games.

Where you pick each round:
Your position to s e l e c t the player is determined by your team results in the season before. This is basically the NFL rules, means the worst team in the league gets the first pick each round, the second worst the second pick of each round and so on. The playoff teams are sorted by their playoff rounds (so wildcard exit, divisional playoff exit, conference championship exit, Bowl) and inside the playoff rounds based on their league results to sort them. The Bowl winner is the 32nd (means last) teams to pick.

A word on tanking:
Some teams do like to lose on purpose from time to time, sometime with “relaxed” game settings, which means they will play not really good and those games do often end 100+ points in margin.
They are aiming for a good draft position and very often do relegate then to “win” the league a level below and do aim to come back to the old level with a better team.
There are not many teams which did this really often and not many did really dominate after such a tanking season.
The reality is, they do have one boring season losing every game in the league, getting one to three good players (with a high chance of only 1 or 2 of those are really good in the long run), having another boring season to win every game and do come back to the old level with a crappy low level trophy in their case, a few players ready to play in 2 to 3 seasons and still face 80% of the old teams which did frustrate the manager 3 seasons ago so much that they decide to tank the next season.
Does this sound like fun?
Everybody is free to do what they think they have to do, but tanking won’t help you in the long run. Good management will do that.

The draftee list:
Many managers do have many ways to value the draft players and do the sorting on the 96 player list.
Each league has its own draft, and it will be done AFTER season rollover, so you do sort a list during season X and the draft happens in the 1st real time week of season X+1, based on the results of season X and the sorting you did during season X or prior the draft in season X+1.
If you won the league or got promoted otherwise, you are already part of a different league, but will pick from the same pool of players your former league opponents do also pick from.

The draft is done over 3 days, each night u p d a t e one round, which allows you to adjust your sorting after round 1 and 2, if needed. During each round the list is frozen, so no changes are possible then.

If you are lazy, you can even skip the initial sorting after player a maximum of 32 players and do the sorting for the second round before the second round starts and sort max the next 32 players then, and the rest before round three. If you know your pick position exactly (like #1 or #10) you can even stop sorting with this approach after you did sort a number of players equal your round (like 1 or 10 players), because your team will pick at that round and what comes after that on that round day is not important to you.
This might save you some time (but sometimes not much, the later you pick), because for sure there will be players take, which you did not sort for that round, so the next day you only have to sort less than a maximum of 32 players and will find some of your sorted players left on the list.
Depended on your selected player in the former round you might have to adjust the sorting for the next round.
You will have to find your own rules to value the draftees, based on all skills and parameters available. I will give you some examples at the bottom of the section, but whether you use that or do develop something on your own is yours to decide.

The round marker:
Be careful with the round-marker (1st round, 2nd round or 3rd round) you might fix the player to, because the sorting mechanism does work quite unique.
The engine does look first for a round-marked-player marked for that specific active round and will take the highest sorted player (with the lowest sorting number) available out of that group.
If no player was found available or marked that way at all, the engine now looks at all players without a round-marker. Players with a round marker for already done rounds are interpreted as not marked also. Out of that pool the highest sorted player available is taken.
If still no player was found, the whole draftee list is taken and the highest sorted player available is taken.
That means players with a 1st-round-mark and a high sorting might get ignored in 2nd round, if there is a player with a 2nd-round-mark on the roster, even if the 1st-round-marked guy is sorted higher on the overall list.
The 1st-round-mark does lose his status in 2nd-round and is interpreted as any-round, which makes the highest sorted player marked with 2nd-round the most desired player to take in second round.
Same is valid for 3rd-round-marks.
Got lost?

Here is an example with 6 players:
Player 1 - 2nd round
Player 2 – 1st round
Player 3 – 3rd round
Player 4 – any round
Player 5 - 1st round
Player 6 - 2nd round
At the 1st round, the Player 2 would be taken, since at that stage the algorithm does look at 1st round marked players first, then at any round players and if that all doesn’t work, the engine takes the sorting of all remaining players. Player 2 is available and marked as 1st round, so he is taken.
Now we come to second round and the engine is taking a look at the 2nd round marked players first, then any-round marked and then all others based on sorting.
Player 1 is the highest sorted with marked 2nd rounds, so he is taken, even if Player 5 is marked 1st round. That 1st round marker is interpreted as any-round, so the player is not in the mix at the start.
At round 3 is Player 3 taken as highest sorted 3rd round guy.
Now let’s play what if.

First round:
Assuming the same sorting and Player 2 was taken by some other team? Player 5 is taken at first round, because it’s marked that way.
Assuming Player 2 and Player 5 are already gone at first round? Player 4 is taken, because it’s the only one not marked for a round and is available.
Assuming Player 2, 5 and 4 are taken at first round already and you pick next? Player 1 is taken, as highest sorted rest players.

Second round:
Assuming player 1 is taken? Player 6 is taken as highest sorted player with 2nd round mark.
Assuming player 1 and player 6 are taken and you pick next? Player 2 is taken as highest player sorted without a round marked. The 1st round marker is interpreted as any-round in round 2!
Assuming player 1, 6 and 2 are taken and you pick next? Player 4 is taken as highest sorted with any-round marked. Player 5 is also an any-round player, but sorted lower.

Third round:
Assuming player 3 is taken? Player 1 would be chose as highest sorted any-round marked player, since the 2nd round marker is interpreted as any-round.

I hope that helps to get the picture.

I did skip the marking a long time ago and decided to go straight sorting 1st to 96th, all marked with any round. There are some ways to use this system to ensure a single pick based on position, age or whatever feature is desired.
I will take an example with the QB-Position.
You know you like to have one and you did find 5 players worth a shot and since you pick at #5 you are sure you get one of those 5. You do also want just one of those players and in round 2 and 3 you like to have other players and hopefully not one of the remaining 4 QBs.
Sort your 5 QBs based on your system and put them to lowest spots on the list, so #92 to #96 and mark them first-round and NO OTHER player gets a first-round marker.
On draft day the engine will look for first-round marker and will find at pick #5 a list of 1 to 5 QBs with that marker and will s e l e c t the highest sorted player. Assuming it was #91 sorted and the others are still available, in second round the engine will look for second-round-marked players and if that’s not available for any-round-marked players. Since the remaining QBs are sorted on the last spots, they will get very likely ignored (if you did not mark all other players third round ;-) ) and you will get a different player. Same for third round. You still might end up with one of the QBs (depended on your pick position and and how many players you did put at the bottom) in this example it’s impossible to get one of those, since at third round there are still 32 players left, those 4 QBs are down below sorted and you pick at #5.

But try it yourself it might be useful for you.

As advice to get the best picture for your upcoming draft, here some tips.

Your coaching strategy is a major factor for evaluating players.
If you have a high CP-AC on one position, almost every player will become very good in the main skills over 7-10 seasons on that position, regardless of his TW.
If you lack an AC on another position, a high TW is essential to get at least a bit of performance out of that guy on that position, if you don't have other strategies regarding training and coaches.

Do define, which parameters, like Age, INT, TW, EXP, Skills, Talents and so on are you most desired parameter set and how much they should be worth it and then try to get the best player based on that set.
Many do create nasty formulas to calculate that one single value for sorting the players, for example simply adding or multiplying all desired parameters in some form and then take the player with the highest sum as the most desired.
Some do weighted functions on several of parameters, like 90% STR for OL and the rest 10% is simple the blocking skill, both summed up and that's that.
Others do build value clusters like STR > 40 -> 50 points, STR > 45 -> 75 points and for every STR-point extra another 10 points get added. A trait gets 50 points and so an.

The best way to sort the players regardless of the evaluation is by calculating their actual und future skill value on each position.
How that?
Scout each player’s values and make a calculation playing "what if" on each player for each position.
So "what if this QB is trained as DL with my coaches until he hits the age of 30", or whatever the age or limit is, you set.
You will have for each player than some kind of value to work with on each position and when you start looking for the needed position, you will see that not every existing player on his current position in the draft is the best choice to fill that position.
Sure, the best ones will have very likely on that position also a high value, so they won't be lost or gone, but there will also be some players which might be only 5th or sixth choice by default on that position (without deep evaluation I mean) and it can be that this player drops to 64th or deeper spot on that position, if you calculate ALL players career development potential on that position.
Example: You need a DL and there are 5 which are great in all aspects, clearly the 5 best players of the whole draft in physicals and all other parameters.
The 6th and later players on DL do have physicals somewhere in the 30s and do have bad TW. So if you need a DL, they are not the best choice, if they are the only ones left.
You have to pick as 30th, because you had a quite good playoff run and at the time you do pick it's very likely those 5 great liners are gone.
So, do you pick the 6th best, if available?
If you did play "what if" for all players, you know now, there are maybe 10 other players, non-DL, which will have better values as DL at the end of their career as that cursed 6th DL in the draft, but they are at the moment RB, WR, LB or maybe QB.
Yes, they will take time to get them in shape, but they might have already some skills trained you need and you only have to train 1 or 2 skills on top and with great TW and with already given great physicals, they are maybe a few season not really a DL, but after a few season they do catch up and turn into that player you always wanted.
If you don't play "what if" you will miss those players.
The strength of that game is that you can switch players quite easily, so use it as an advantage.

Mathematics for draft evaluation:
I did promise some examples and here are some.

Lifetime training value minus physical training:
Assuming you did make some lifetime training calculation I did describe in the training chapter, you have already a formula to calculate the lifetime training effect on each position for each player in the draft. You would also have some sort of weighting on the skills, so you know already on which level the player might be you start training him now!
For the draft this has to be adjusted. At first he will be one year older when you draft him (assuming you did scout him in season X and not prior the draft after rollover to season X+1). That’s a lot of less training. Second you have to calculate some form of physical training. A player with STR = 35 and SPE = 35 will very likely not be capped and they need training on the skills, which is training the other skills don’t get.
So you need some sort of guess how much training will be needed until they cap and start the real skill training. You get set up goal skill values for SPE and STR to be minimum for that position and you can calculate the difference to the current values and you can even calculate the number of trainings needed to reach that goal. No you have to take those trainings away from the life time value and you have a rough estimation and you can compare all players on that position. Some might already have the STR and SPE skills, so they start the real skill training now and others might need one or two seasons of physical training to get to the desired values (if not capped before, in that case you have to decide what to do with the player). Some might be older and some might be younger.
This can shift the lifetime values big way.

Weight functions
Another possibility is to mix the skills up based on a weight function including all parameters.
For that you need some kind of scoring for every parameter and because the values are different (like AGE and TW, one is between 19 and 23 on draft day, the other between 1 and 50), you might need functions to have them on the same level.
Assuming you would like to have all between 0 and 100, take AGE with 100 being 19 and 23 being 0 you need some sort of 100 - (AGE-18-1)*25. Take TW_100 = TW * 2. INT_100 = INT *2, Talent with TAL * 25 and maybe Traits as 100 if Trait is available and 0 otherwise.
Then you could make per position a physical value formula, for example for OL you take (STR * 4 + SPE )/5 *2 to value STR five times bigger than SPE. Or you leave SPE out completely. Your decision.
At the end you have all players with a physical score between 0 and 100.
You can do the same with the skill sets the position needs also, like BLO, FOO, POS; VIS and AGI on OL and bring those onto a scoring value of 0 to 100.
Now you can add some sort of additional weight for the final score, like 90% physical, 5% skills and all other skills maybe just 1% to 2 % each, all summed up.
Finally you have a value of some kind to judge every player on every position.

Kommentare bitte hier / Comments please here

Last edited on 2016-05-03 07:15:48 by jack6

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Leverkusen Leopards

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posted: 2016-04-04 08:32:20 (ID: 100072738) Report Abuse
Chapter 10 - The long way to become RZA Transfer Tycoon
Version 1.0 - 30.05.2016

The Transfer Market is one of the three places you can get your players from and it is by far the trickiest one.
The draft gives you the chance to sort your players by your own value rules and from that on it’s more or less luck. Not hard to tackle and you have to live with the results.
The Youth Academy is your own baby and the only thing which is not in your hands is the prospects you get each training u p d a t e to choose from. But considering the 24 updates and a wide range of players to s e l e c t from, it’s not that heavy to deal with. The rest is work and strategy.
The Transfer Market is work, luck, money, greed, a business model for some and a nightmare for many others.

As a beginner, with a lot of stadium left to build, I suggest to not bother with the market as long as you don’t know the rules and the side effects. The time will come you will want some players from the market to enhance your team, but I do suggest that you avoid high skill veterans with non-physical skills higher than 35 and I also suggest that you set yourself a money cap, which you not surpass, like 1.000.000$ or 10.000.000$ for a players buying price.
Why am I such a chicken?
Because ONE wrong decision in the beginning can set you back for some time and can even drive you to quit the game or to restart the franchise.

Imagine you did save your money and decided to get that QB, which will be your starter for seasons to come. Imagine some other teams did see him, too. A bidding war happens and you have to pay almost every dime you have to get that guy. Now you got him and with age of 26 he is not old, but the owner before did train him only on VIS and PAS and both skills are at 45. That’s a huge wage you will suddenly have on top of your existing wages and depended on your stadium built and the upcoming games you might get into financial trouble. Worst case scenario is that you can’t get the income needed to support your team. In that case you might have to cut exactly that QB or worse, the system might cut that player and even more from your roster, if you don’t do enough.
An even worse scenario is a shopping tour, because you want to improve your team fast and you decide not to buy one player but a lot, like 5 to 10, each for a small price, summed up, almost everything you have. Once they join your team you realize that they were in the market for a small price and no bid for a reason. They are expensive and not really good trained. Suddenly your team wage explode and you get into real trouble, players get cut, you can’t sell those dump player and you can’t build your stadium.
You think this is nonsense? It happens, every season.
So be warned that the market is a risky place.

The laws of the market
Assuming you know already enough to judge the consequences in a right way, you will have to deal with some strange phenomenal. Sometimes you get good players for a nice price, sometimes you get an equal skilled player only with a huge amount of money.
The driving factor behind this behaviour is the human one. Every day do new managers come to the game and everyday do some leave. But the amount of managers coming and going per day are different. They do come in waves and by that they do also get to certain level by waves.
Suddenly many managers do seek a QB while some other day only one manager is looking.
On top of that do the veteran managers have their rituals, like after draft sales, after regular season / playoff sales, before season rollover sales and so on.
The amount of managers seeking for special players do change and so do the prices. A bidding war is good for the seller and suddenly a 10.000.000$ player is sold for 50.000.000$ because every manager has his own limits, pockets and don’t forget stubbornness on top of this.
The bottom line is that if you NEED a player NOW, be prepared to pay more than he might be worth, while if you like to have a player at some point of the season, you can wait for the right one to come up and buy him cheaper. Maybe.
The transfer agents are sometime a curse for the patient ones.
The Agents do allow every supporter to set up a player profile they seek.
They can make that profile quite detailed, setting limits for each skill and age and many things more, or they can just ask for every player with ONE certain parameter.
The result is always the same, whenever players fitting the profile are found during daily update, a mail is send and the supporter can see all the players worth a look, so they don’t miss one.
So if YOU look for a player and some other guy with an agent looks for the same kind of player, a bidding war might happen anyway.

Direct Hirings
One nice thing as human resources department owner is, that you can HIRE free agent players, if they did not receive an offer and there are only 24 hours left on his offer. It’s not easy to find many of those worth a shot, but if you find one, you save the whole bidding process and get the player for yourself. Cheapest way to get a player. This can be a huge benefit in early days, if you seek players outside the common path, like low level talent players with good physicals to be the first generation or youth players send by the system with unkown caps. Those come for change, but be aware that they will enter your senior team (I never tried this with 16 year olds, could be that this is not possible with them).
Is it possible to make a profit, longterm?
Now let’s talk about profit.
If you would like to become the next transfer agent tycoon and you want to make BIG money, well, there might be some things you have to consider.
The first is you have to get that player you want to sell, somehow. Draft, Youth Academy or Transfer Market are the main sources.
Draftees do come for free, but the selection process is quite luck driven and there are only 3 per season.
The Youth Academy might give you more players, but you need to invest money here and maybe you do invest also extra training points. If that’s all worth to sell a player, is up to you.
An almost unlimited amount of players to work with does only give you the transfer market and you will have to hire those players (as HR Department user) or most of the time you have to buy those players.
Second you have to consider that you need roster space for those players and those slots will be eventually missed for your playing players or developing players.
Third point to consider is the selling part. You might find from time to time managers willing to buy players way beyond their believed to be regular price (the community normally has different opinions on a players value) but normally it does not happen that the price does skyrocket every time. As a major risk in this buy and sell business you don’t have the chance to set a starting price. The system does that! No chance to buy or hire a guy for let’s say 10.000.000$ and ASK for 20.000.000$ and keeping that offer up until some desperate manager turns up and buys that player. No, the system will set up a price, like 200.000$ based on skills and some manager will very likely offer that money, if the player is really worth millions.
So you might end up selling a player for much less than you did pay for buying him. It comes down to advertisement, timing and luck.

I’m not a big fan of that transfer market, so I can’t give you a deep hint on becoming a transfer tycoon, but be assured that the normally used buy cheap, train him up and sell high approach is not a sure thing in this game. Some managers do ignore the market completely, at least for buying players, which does leave you with even less customers. But it is possible to make a profit, as you can see in the stats of the game itself.
Funny fact is, there are about 30 to 40 managers who did make some kind of profit, out of over 600 to 700 managers overall. Many of those profit making managers did only buy some players if really needed and are not really in that transfer agent tycoon business. So if you find a way to make this happen, your competition won’t be that much. ;-)

Most managers do use the transfer market only for two purposes.
The first is to get a player they need for their own team, long term or short term.
The second is to sell players which became expendable to get some kind of money from him and support your team a bit further.

So don’t expect a mad bidding war on every offer you place and don’t expect a career opportunity with which you can double your income. All this can happen, but not that often.

Bidding on players
Be aware that as a buyer you have the chance to set up an offer and the system does bid on the current ask price as much as needed to have the highest offer standing if your bid was high enough.
If not, the current price will rise up to the amount you did put in and you are still not the highest bidder.
If you ARE the highest bidder, but you did put in a higher amount as “last offer size”, as long as competitors do bid less money, you will stay the highest bidder.
Some managers do use that functionality at the start to test the offers from the other competitors and do only offer the highest current price play a few more bucks, even only 1$ more.
Sometimes it works and you get by that a player quite cheap, sometimes not.
As a side effect you can now see the player on your bidding list until the auction did finish.
Some managers do really set up a highest amount ONCE and don’t increase that amount once they were outbid. Some managers do like to increase it slowly on purpose and have their limit in their mind. There are even late offers on soon to be closed auctions, but not as much as you would think or like to see.

A last hint
If you are really interested in a player, scout him.
That makes only sense if you have a level 20 scout, but if you have that, use it.
But the scout has limits.
He won’t tell you the caps and the managers might even lie to you in the transfer market add or on PM. Most managers don’t do it, so ask them.
I can’t remember whether I was ever cheated that way, I would guess not, but I don’t buy players that often, so I’m not the best example.
Regardless, a scout will tell you his traits and his talent and that will help you to judge the player a bit better than before.

Finding your way
Given the market and the managers as they are, you will have to find your way to use it.
Some do use it as player hiring tool very often, some only at the start to find players a bit better than the current roster players, some do seek veterans to plug gaps in the starting line up, some do just sell their drafted and YA trained Players and some do play transfer market tycoon.
Get a feeling for the market and it’s very likely you will spend some money which you will consider as burned a while later.
Relax, it’s just a game and you are supposed to have fun.
So don’t get to serious on this matter and use this tool the best way you can control it.

Kommentare bitte hier / Comments please here

Last edited on 2016-05-30 06:14:30 by jack6

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Leverkusen Leopards

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posted: 2016-04-04 08:32:26 (ID: 100072739) Report Abuse
Chapter 11 - Earn and spend money in the game
Version 1.0 - 08.06.2016

The game is a management simulation and does base heavily on money.
At the beginning you won’t have any money, but also almost no costs.
Then you will hopefully start building your stadium and the money will come flooding in, tons of it, and if you are wise you won't spend it all for rubbish (means unwise player additions and coaches hirings), extent your stadium further and will then decide what to do when it is finished.
Believe me, if you push your team at some point to the top (or at least try to do that) the money will run short, quickly.
It's up to you how you will react on that, how to manage the wages, expenses and so on and that's when the management part really starts to kick in. The history of RZA did see a lot of teams having a prime, but not many having severals.

Let's start with the income.

Assuming you have already your stadium fully build, you will have a guaranteed sum of income from league games and Supercup games.
If you schedule regularly friendly games on Friday and use the bye weeks in the league as additional friendly slots, you can earn on level 1 and beyond about 140.000.000$ from tickets, with some playoff runs in league, Supercup and even Champ of Champ cup this amount will skyrocket to 180.000.000+$ per season.
Level 2 will do 15% less in league game income, which is not that hard as it sounds, since the Supercup money stays the same.
In total is the ticket income you major income part, if you not start a career as body trader and make big profits in the transfer market.

Second biggest income part will be the sponsor (if we ignore the transfer market).
Each time after season rollover you have to pick a new sponsor and you always get 3 sponsors to choose from.

The 1st Offer will give you 250.000$ per update, 300.000$ per league win and 105.000$ per cup win.
The 2nd Offer will give you 300.000$ per update, 200.000$ per league win and 90.000$ per cup win.
The 2nd Offer will give you 350.000$ per update, 100.000$ per league win and 75.000$ per cup win.
(Numbers for level 1 and higher)

Based on your PR-Consultant-Level you might get some extra bonus on those numbers or bonus on youth pulls, bowl wins or whatever.
To be honest, those bonus payments are nice to have, and a PR-Consultant is worth the money anyhow because of attendance boost, but don't count on big extra deals for sponsorship.

But which deal should you take?

As you can see, you get a fix sum per u p d a t e and then win bonus payments, so depended on your ambitions and your team level it might be wise to calculate this through.

Just to crunch some numbers.
Assuming a bad season means 2 wins, an average season means 8 wins and a good season means 14 wins, in league or Supercup, which leaves some room for improvements and also room for losses, you get such figures:

1. Offer:
Bad all games-> 6.810.000$
Bad league / average Supercup -> 7.440.000$
Average league / bad Supercup -> 8.610.000$
Average all games -> 9.240.000$
Average league / good Supercup -> 9.870.000$
Good league / average Supercup -> 11.040.000$
Good all games -> 11.670.000$

2. Offer:
Bad all games-> 7.780.000 $
Bad league / average Supercup -> 8.320.000 $
Average league / bad Supercup -> 8.980.000 $
Average all games-> 9.520.000 $
Average league / good Supercup -> 10.060.000 $
Good league / average Supercup -> 10.720.000 $
Good all games-> 11.260.000 $

3. Offer:
Bad all games -> 8.750.000 €
Bad league / average Supercup -> 9.200.000 €
Average league / bad Supercup -> 9.350.000 €
Average all games -> 9.800.000 €
Average league / good Supercup -> 10.250.000 €
Good league / average Supercup -> 10.400.000 €
Good all games-> 10.850.000 €

The question is now, which type of team are you?
If you are a new team, it's quite likely you will end up with a bad all season, but it's not given.
If you are a team which did play for some seasons already, you will do average or better in the Supercup every season. The league games do depend on your level. A fresh promotion can push you right back to the bottom of a league while you were top of the league a season before.

Choose wisely, the difference can make some money over the season.
If you are in doubt, I suggest selecting the sponsor with a good ambition in mind.

Next income part is mentioned on the economy sheet as ‘Others’.
The major part in this is the income from the fan shop.

That thing is easy to manage.
It has to be set up once and you should do that at some point when you have the money and it can't be spend on a stadium extension.
Once it is build you need to buy products and set prices.

At the start you might bother with buying small amounts of products and if you like to do so, do so, it will give you a profit anyhow, but if you just want the biggest profit and no much effort on that topic, wait until you can buy the largest amount of product (with the cheapest price) and start selling it.
Set a warning barrier the size of half the amount of the largest product, set a selling price with a good margin and let it run.
From that point on you might have to do 1 or 2 times a season something on that topic, max.

That hard part is to get this going.
You need a lot of money to sink it into the products at first.
That money is better spend on the stadium, if that’s not finished at that point.

You should also consider, that building the thing and not buying products will just cost you money, so once you decided to build it, you should also have the money to buy products.

Regarding the selling prices I suggest to start with 50% add-on on top of the most expensive buying price of a product.
Example on Calendars: You can buy them with 1.000 units for 20$ a unit as the smallest amount to buy. Set the price of Calendars to 30$ a unit. It works. You will later buy the Calendar for much less than 20$, so your margin will be quite good.

Of cause you are free to play with the prices, but the lower you do set it, the less money you make as a profit, the higher you make it, the less you sell.
I did never really play much around with those prices, but those 50% add-on do work quite fine.

The last income you can have is transfer market money.
Now this is tricky.
Every player you like to sell has to come from somewhere.
A draftee, a youth player or a transfer market player are the only source.
Draftees do come cheap (3 per season) and do sometimes sell for very high amounts.
The problem with that is, those high price players are usually the one you would like to build a team around. So think about it carefully.
Quite often it happens that you get 1 or 2 useful draftees and the 2nd and/or 3rd don't make the team, for whatever reasons.
When to sell them is up to you, there is a lot of traffic at season start, right after the draft.
Also quite busy is at season end, before season rollover or after regular season end/during playoffs, when teams try to figure out their next season roster and they don't have to play playoffs anymore.

Youth players do need a lot of attention during the up to 5 seasons of training until you put them on your senior roster or sell them.
They do often also get high prices, especially if they have certain qualities already trained up, likely good physicals and an A-skill in the 20s.
Be aware that selling unfinished, players and players with suspicious physicals, for example STR and SPE at 37, you might not get much attention, because potential buyers assuming you try to sell red capped players with bad physicals. You might get questions regarding those skills and you can even lie about their cap status, but since this is a small community, it wouldn’t help you much. So if you want to sell such players, tell the truth or tell nothing.
An add in the transfer market forum might help here, but it's for sure hard to sell such players.

Also be aware that depended on your overall strategy you might not have many players to sell at all.

Transfer Market players can be obtained in 2 flavours. You can buy them or, if you use a HR department, you can hire them. If you buy them, the selling part can backfire quite heavily, since you can't set a minimum price which would give you an instant profit. So it all comes down to demand and offers. At the right time a player might get a lot of attention and a bidding war, at the wrong time he is sold for peanuts.
There are managers which made a lot of money with selling and buying players, but there are also managers who did spend huge amounts on the market and did not sell a lot.
Both kinds can be successful on the field.
The second flavour, hiring players, is a bit less risk driven regarding spend money, because you don't have to spend much. They do come almost for free.
The risk here is that those players don't come often and if so, their quality is most of the time not good.
In the past there was an exploit and some managers did use that to get really good players and sell them for huge profit, but this is no longer possible, which is a good thing.

It might happen to you that you do sell players from one of those three or even all of those three categories after several seasons on your roster. Sometimes they are even close their retirement, but will for sure still play 1+ season (otherwise you can't sell them).
Those players are often sold at season end and after rollover to free roster space and usually don't make a lot of money, because their wages are usually high and their remaining playing time is not very long, at least it looks that way.
Still, some positions do bring you some extra money.

The range of income to calculate with
Overall you can get easily 150.000.000+$ in income over the season, 180.000.000$ and more are quite common, more is very much depended on you playoff runs and how many players you are able to sell for good prices.

The expenses will be THE factor you will have to monitor regularly. There are several phases in the operation of a franchise which can turn your high profit balance into a red figure nightmare.
Especially the season rollover or the time right before rollover can be crucial, it’s the time of the new wage calculation for the next season.

There are 2 parts which will usually be the biggest expenses over a season, once you finished building your stadium.
That’s wages for coaches and wages for players.

With a quite new team, your player wages will be small, very small in fact, as long as you did not buy a high trained player you don't have a good use for.
In that phase the wages for the coaches will be biggest spending point in your balance, demanding usually 1.000.000$ to 3.000.000$ per update. Your players wages in compare might be still at 100.000$ per u p d a t e at that phase.
That's a lot of money for coaches, which is the reason I suggest to wait with the coaches until your stadium is build big enough to not only support such wages but also to support additional expenses.
So 35.000.000$ to 70.000.000$ a season can happen easily on coaches.

At some point the wages of your team will start to become higher than those of your coaches.
Depended on your roster and coaches strategy, this happens fast, or almost never.
The good news is, that the coaches wages do adjust only in small pieces over the seasons and do rise very slowly (if you keep them; if you hire new ones, this can change quickly) based on their experience gain.
The player wages are very depended on the two max trained non-physical skills, which means, if you train all your players in 2 skills, like TAC, PAS, KIC or something to 45 and then start catching up with the other needed skills, you will run into trouble fast.
The higher the skills, the more expensive the player, regardless his other skills (as long as they are less developed). The new 2 skill wage system does help a bit compared to the old highest skill value system, but overall not much did change.
Some managers do stop training beyond a certain value, like 40 or 45. Some do train their players equally in all needed skills and therefore have always only players trained in the best way, from wage point of view.
A good way to reduce the players wage is to use the HR department.
It allows hiring your player on a fix wage for 2 and up to 5 seasons (which includes the running season). The con on that approach is, that you need to negotiate the contracts, player by player and you do have only 5 tries. Is no agreement found regarding the wage, the player will leave the team after the season (you can still try to sell him until then).
Overall the players wages can become the biggest part of your expenses and might exceed in your prime 100.000.000$ a season easily with the sky as the limit (the only limit is the financial u p d a t e each Wednesday and Sunday, if you went into the red at that points, very quickly will your team be reduced, since the system starts cutting players, starting with the most expensive one).

Beside those 2 parts, there are only a few minor ones.

Construction is finished more or less after the stadium build.
Facilities can cause costs here when build, but compared to other expenses this is no big deal.

Expert wages
Expert wages can be between 300.000$ and 6.000.000$ depended on you setup and laciness.
Most of them do have good use, but whether you like to have them over a full season is up to you.

Stadium Maintenance
Stadium Maintenances can become a bigger issue, depended on the intervals you do renovate your stadium. The fix fee is applied with every renovation, so it's not wise to renovate every update.
The facility manager in your staff can help you to become more lazy, but he will also cost more money by paying his wage and by an automatic repair after every home game.

Facility Maintenance
Facility maintenance can also become an expensive part in your balance, if you decide to have many facilities. Regardless of their use, the more you have built, the more they need for maintenance.

The ‘others’ part does include costs for fan shop materials and this is not a regular issue, but depended on sales and periods, you might need to buy stuff for several million dollars per season to sell them.

At last there are the costs for transfer players.
Every player bought will create costs here and since the prices are depended on market prices and bidding wars, this can be 0$ (so avoiding the market) to several hundred million dollars.
I can’t give you really great tips to reduce the amount of money you spend here, since normally managers do buy players they need and the more they think they need EXACTLY THAT PLAYER, the more they will spend on one deal. So it’s up to you to decide each and every transfer you do to set yourself a limit and to think about the consequences. If you buy a player the money will be gone from your pocket and in addition you will have the players wage on your balance (if it was a senior roster player, a youth player will only block a YA spot)

Overall you needed to get your income and your expenses in balance.
You can create some profit in the first few seasons and can spend that money over seasons to come to push yourself to the top, but overall you can't spend more than you have.
Some managers do this in waves, they accumulate some money over several seasons and keep a lower profile regarding their players wages and then give it a go and try to max them out over a few seasons to make a push for the big trophies.
Some do try to keep income and expenses in a balance, making maybe a bit of a profit or are a bit in red figures but overall are trying to get the most out of the money they get.

The game does allow you to accumulate a lot of money. There are managers out there having a billion dollars on their bank account and more.
For sure it is nice to be a good accountant and having huge profits season over season, but as far as my experience goes, this comes with the problem that your team will not be the best possible.
There is always a way to make you team stronger and usually that means you need to spend more money, may it be a different coaches combination, a higher trained player, a free agent acquisition or a contract prolongation.
If you focus on the money part of that game and you like to make the RZA richest managers list, well for sure you have a lot of catch up to achieve, but for sure you will also not make it to the top in success on the field.

That does not mean there is no way to have quite good money and a good team. All I want to say is, it doesn't help you much to keep your team artificially on a lower level, only to have 100.000.000$ profit every season.
That money won't buy you anything in real life and obviously you are not willing to spend it inside the game, so what is your goal? I’m fine, if the answer is that you want to play the game that way, but most will not want to play it that way, they want titles (and in best case still a profit).

Being in red figures
On the other end, once you hit the bottom and you can't control your expenses, the game will take control of your team.

If you, for example, keep buying expensive free agents and suddenly having much higher wages, and you get into the red figures, the system will warn you. You have several updates before it becomes a real problem and the system starts cutting players to correct things automatically, so better have a plan ready until then.

Best advice in that situation would be to cut or sell players which are expensive, FAST. Selling would help because of the extra income and the reduced total wage amount, cutting will simply reduce the overall needed wage amount, but will also cost you one time some money to honour the miss wages of that player.
Better sell or cut some players YOU do chose, than letting the system decide. Look for the most expensive and expandable players.

What you should not do is, cutting coaches. They will take a big check as farewell gift, which will send you even deeper into the pit and you will cripple your training.
Except you did really mess up your coaching hiring, don't touch the coaches.

The best way to react on a red figure period is to analyse your costs carefully, collect the numbers and either decide actions on your own or asking for help in the forum.
The community will give you a range of possible scenarios and you can eventually pick the one you like most or which does not cost you too much. If you let this slide without quick actions, you team might fall apart and you might get too depressed to play on. Seriously, it happened in the past.

Managing over the season
Keep in mind that after the regular season you still need money for wages and so on, but your ticket income is limited, unless you have deep playoff runs.
Switch to the forecast screen, which will show you an amount of money you will likely need until rollover.
You can lower that amount by playing friendlies. The Tuesday and the Saturday friendlies do even produce higher income than the Friday friendlies, so use them!

Keep also in mind that after rollover there are a few updates, depended on your first home game, which do also have only limited income.
So it is not enough to keep an eye on the balance on a weekly basis and if that's having a small profit all is well, no, you need an eye on the whole season and if you have millions as expenses on wages, there will be many updates you have to pay those, without getting big home field ticket incomes.
Means, that weekly profit during the regular season should better be good or your money reserve deep enough to keep things going until the next regular season start.

There are some tricks to lower the costs at season end.
- do you roster work over soon enough and cut or sell players which won't make the team next season for sure.
You will save several weeks of wages on those and might even get money on the transfer market.
- if you like and are fine with it, cut retiring players lose once you don't need them anymore. That comes with a price. They won't show up in your HOF to s e l e c t from in the future. Only players which do retire at season rollover do that.
- You could fire some of your staff members, if done early, you save also wages for several weeks. But you need to remember to hire them again after rollover.

Season timeline
Here a small timeline of a usual season.

Right after season rollover to first league games (2 financial updates)
- You do s e l e c t a sponsor and he gives you the first money right away.
- You play a friendly on Tuesday (Rollover is always Sunday) to earn some extra ticket money
- You get some more sponsor money on the first u p d a t e on Wednesday and all the expenses are taken from your account.
- You play a friendly on Friday for extra money
- You play your first league game on Saturday, can be home or away, so check your expenses. If you win, you earn extra sponsor money.
- You get the next sponsor money on the Sunday u p d a t e and all the expenses are taken from your account.
- If you have a fan shop you earn some money on each daily u p d a t e also.
- In this phase you might need more money than you can earn.

Regular season before start of supercup playoffs (15 financial updates)
- Each Monday and Thursday you play Supercup and hopefully in a 144300 seat stadium. You get half the ticket income. If you win you earn extra sponsor money.
- Each Tuesday and Saturday you play a league game and you earn money on all home games. If you win you earn extra sponsor money.
- On ONE Tuesday or Saturday between league games 3 and 10 you will play a friendly on a bye week for extra money.
- Each Friday you play a friendly for extra money.
- If you did manage to get a Champ of Champ cup spot you will play 1 to 3 Champ of Champ Cup games (depends on the participating teams, at the moment with level 3 closed it’s max 2 games in this period). You only play more than 1 game if you win. You get half the multiplied ticket income and extra sponsor money. It’s played on Friday, so no friendly possible on that day.
- Each Wednesday and each Sunday you get the sponsor money and all expenses are taken from your account.
- If you have a fan shop you get each day extra money from fan shop sales, on league or supercup days it’s more than on non gameday.
- With 15 Supercup games and 15 league games played the juicy money phase for many teams does end. In this phase the income should exceed the expenses. High level teams do manage to secure a more or less even balance until now. Some are already in red figures, on purpose.

Last regular season game until season rollover (7 financial updates)
- If you did secure a Supercup playoff spot you will play your first playoff game on Thursday, getting half of the multiplied ticket money. If you win you get extra sponsor money.
- On Friday you play a friendly for extra money.
- if you are still playing Champ of Champ cup games, you participate there instead of a friendly and earn multiplied ticket money and if you win also extra sponsor money.
- On Saturday you play the last regular season game, home or way. You get ticket money if it’s a home game. If you win, you get extra sponsor money.
- Now for a lot of teams is the season over. Only the league playoff teams (12 per league) and the remaining supercup playoff teams and champ of champ cup teams are left.
- On Each Wednesday and Sunday you get sponsor money and all expenses are taken from your account.
- If you are still in the playoffs you play Monday and Thursday for Supercup, Tuesday and Saturday for League playoffs, Friday for Champ of Champs. Each win will give you extra sponsor money. You get always half the multiplied ticket income.
- If you are not in league playoffs and/or Camp of Champ Cup, you can schedule friendlies on Tuesday, Friday and/or Saturday for extra money.
- If you made it in the league as #1 or #2 in your conference you have a Bye week on wildcard game day (a Tuesday) and you can schedule also a friendly for extra money.
- if you finished as #8 to #5 worst team (only for level 1 and 2 at the moment) or did lose the conference championship games (only for level 3 and 2 at the moment and 3 is closed) you will play a relegation game on a Saturday, prior the bowl. You get half the ticket income and if you win extra sponsor money.
- If you made it to the Bowl, you will have a bye week prio to the bowl on a Saturday. You can schedule a friendly there for extra money.
- The last game of the season is the champ of champ cup final on Friday.
- Season rollover is on Sunday, normally after the last u p d a t e which takes all the expenses from your account and will give you the last time sponsor money.
- In this phase it is either a very juicy time for the playoff teams or a low income time for all others. New teams should be able to survive easily with the friendlies and the sponsor money, matured teams might lose money here a bit or heavy way, so check the forecast.

The money aspect of this game is not that complex as it might look like, but still needs constant management if you are at the phase of your team, when the expenses can be higher than the income. Normally, during the period of completing the stadium and the status of a matured roster, you get money in big buckets. Don’t get used to it. That will very likely change and you need a concept for the future.

Kommentare bitte hier / Comments please here

Last edited on 2016-06-08 07:47:38 by jack6

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Leverkusen Leopards

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posted: 2016-04-04 08:32:30 (ID: 100072740) Report Abuse
Chapter 12 - Hire and slash you staff
Version 1.0 - 15.06.2016

These are the little Heinzelmännchen in the background providing you with some nice benefits.

In general there are several levels of staff you can have, starting with a level 1 staff member and it ends with a Level 20 staff which is the best you can get. Most do have several levels in between, but honestly, I would not bother with those.
For each level you want, you have to pay 2.500$ wage per level (so level 1 is 2.500$, level is 5.000$ and so on), but if you increase the level at some time you also have to pay a onetime signing bonus of 3.000$ (medical staff) to 5.000$ (all others) per level!
That means from level 1 to 2 on medical staff you pay 3.000$, to level 3 6.000$ and so on until level 20 with 57.000$ (19*3.000$). The odd thing is, if you like to reduce the level a bid, say from level 20 to 19 you have to pay the same bonus as from level 0 to 19, 54.000$.
But normally, if you like to reduce the level you want to reduce the wages big time, so a reduction to level 1 is normal which does cost no signing bonus at all.

You can increase your stuff directly from level 1 to level 20 if you like (and afford), which is in terms of the signing bonus most desired (since otherwise you have to pay a bonus AGAIN if you like to increase further), but of cause you have to be able to effort the weekly wage of 50.000$ then.
Please be aware that the Facility Manager is an exception to the level rule. That type of staff comes only as level 1 (which mean basically no manager at all) and level 20 (which means full service).

But let’s just tackle each staff member in detail and how you can use him and whether it’s worth the effort or not.

The staff members in detail
I have to admit I did never really play around with various numbers on this topic, but I will for sure state my point of view.

Medical Staff
The Medical staff does help you team to perform better in general.
How so?
Psychologists do increase the moral of your team and depended on your strength and league level, you might need him very much. The thing is, moral does influence your players effectiveness on the field. Everything below 100% is a factor which does lower that effectiveness.
Each game which generates income except the friendlies (so only league games, Supercup games, Champ of Champs cup games and all playoff games in those competitions) do have an influence on the moral. League games do hit you with a 10% loss in case of a loss and it will grant you a 10% bonus with a win. All other mentioned games do even increase that loss or bonus to 12%.
With no Psychologist you will get in trouble very fast, if you don’t win often and regularly. You can also increase moral by training facilities, but that will take away some training bonus on other skills and training is only once per update, while the moral does recover slowly on a daily basis with Psychologists.
What does that mean now?
If you are bound for a great season, lots of wins in all competitions, you can save a big chunk of those 1.200.000$ per season if you like, because your moral will be quite high, regularly.
If you are sure you will have a hard time in the upcoming season, it’s very wise to invest the money over the whole season. Because if you don’t do that, soon enough your team will be very depressed and will lose regardless of your strength.
You can try to avoid that with a Psychologist a bit and maybe you can win some crucial games, get some bonus money, stay in the league and eventually even make the playoffs.
So good team, no Psychologist and bad team need a must-have-Psychologist? Not so fast!

Even a good team does lose, sometimes.

That one loss at the wrong time and no Psychologist in the staff, the next game might be the next loss coming, especially if this is a playoff game and the opponent is on the same level or that game is a crucial division rival game. Think about it this way: Lose a Supercup game on Monday and face one of the toughest division or conference rival on Tuesday with a Moral of 88% instead of 100%. That gives your opponent already a big favour. With a Psychologist you can’t overcome that 12% gap in total, but you can narrow it a bit. There is no guarantee you will win that rival game, but for sure your chances are better with a slightly better moral than 88%. Now think about this: If you lose also that rival game, you are without a Psychologist in a 78% Moral hole and suddenly you are no longer a competing team, you swim for live. Of cause there could be the next BOT bashing supercup game the next Thursday and you get a boost for the next league game, but sometimes the schedule is a … well, let’s say when it starts raining, it pours.

Imagine your so nicely planned bowl run season did end already prior the playoffs, because you did not invest in a Psychologist worth a few dollars.

Since it’s a risky gamble to hire and fire such a staff member, I suggest hiring them and forgetting about it. But it’s up to you.

The same is valid for Physiotherapist.
They do help to lower the injury risks on training updates and if injuries happen, they will speed up the healing process.
You can gamble on that staff member and hire and fire him, if needed.
Or you can hire him and forget about him.
Remember that every time a hire does require a signing bonus. Remember that a hired Physiotherapist will not help if an injury happens during a game, only for the regular updates. But imagine this: Suddenly your TOP QB is out for a game, because he injured himself during training. Now you have to play with the backup or even worse, you did not set a backup, because that TOP QB was bound to play 100% (by game settings). Now you are really in trouble, because the game did pick ANYONE of the roster and let him play QB. Wouldn’t you not like to limit that situation to a minimum? A Physio will eventually even heal your QB until the crucial game happens, or at least he will be only limited a bit, but will play.

It’s up to you.
My medical staff is fully staffed, even in offseason, because I don’t won’t to think about them anymore. That does cost me a few bucks more, but a bit less to think about.

The next group of stuff members are the Consultants.
The Public relations department will help you to raise the amount of tickets sold. That’s well spend money and does pay every invested Cent back.
You can fire them if you don’t have deep playoff runs, but remember to hire them once the season rollover did happen or will happen, because they do also negotiate with your sponsor for some extra money in all kind of payments and some do almost pay the public relation people alone, some are more or less a joke.
For example you can get a bonus on the regular sponsor payments or the won games bonus, which is great. On the other hand you might end up with a few thousand bucks extra for a Bowl win. To set this in relation, a Bowl game does give you alone on ticket income millions extra, the sponsor deal brings you a few thousand bucks (normally a 4 digit number) which is just pity money.
I do keep my department stuffed, basically only because I don’t want to think about it during off season.

The next crucial guy is the Playerscout, who is essential for four things.
Find young players, scout the draft players and scout other club players or free agents are the first three things.
As major bonus there comes also a nice alarm on your own players hidden physical caps and the talent caps. While you KNOW the talent caps and the warning is a nice to have with a nice yellow “!” next to the value, the warning for the hidden physical cap is essential for a good youth player management.
For each level higher, the better the results (and the earlier the alarm).
A level 20 scout will give you a five skill points alarm range, exact scout reports and the best youth player prospects.
Of all the staff members, I would never reduce that level, ever.
But some do decide because of the expenses to reduce the staff level on the scout to 1 and only do increase it to 20 prior the draft to scout those players in detail.
It’s a business decision you will have to make.

Facility Manager
And there is since a few seasons this guy on top, the Facility Manager.
That guy comes only in the level 1 or level 20 flavours and does only help for one thing, keep your Stadium in shape.
After every game, the Stadium is set to 100% back again.
The Costs for the repair do stay the same, so no shortcuts or savings here. This includes also the one-time-charge per repair. In numbers this are cost of 100.000$ one-time for the order and 156.000$ for the repair per home game.
Financially does this guy not make much sense. It’s cheaper to do this on your own, manually (means that guy is at level 1).
Biggest catch here is, you have to remember your repair duty, which should happen every one to five home games.
You will get a warning at a certain level (I think that was 80% condition), but there is not much of a failsafe otherwise. At least now you see the stadium shape on your overview page, which makes it harder to forget the repair. Still you need to check your stadium regularly if you want to avoid big losses in ticket sales and bring it in shape every few homes games.
The lazy managers do hire that Facility Manager at level 20 and never have to worry about their stadium again. That Costs you 1.200.000$ a season on top of the repair costs. In return you get every home game the max amount of visitors calculated (so not 144.400, but if the system sees a potential of let’s say 135.000 you get those. A not 100% stadium might lead to a reduction on that potential visitors).

Regardless how you do decide, the Heinzelmännchen are an essential part of the game and will help you big time in those aspects you hired them. They will cost money, but all of them do offer a service in return which will help you or your team.

Kommentare bitte hier / Comments please here

Last edited on 2016-06-15 06:23:12 by jack6

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Leverkusen Leopards

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posted: 2016-04-04 08:32:44 (ID: 100072741) Report Abuse
Chapter 13 - The games your team can play
Version 1.0 - 21.06.2016

The best roster is worthless if you don’t use it for competition. Luckily the game does offer a lot of it.

League games
As you hopefully know, your team will compete in a league analogue the setup of the NFL, 32 teams, 2 conferences with each 4 division with have each 4 teams.
For each conference a champion has to be found during the playoffs. Each conference does give 6 teams a playoff spot, 4 of them are divisional champs, sorted by record and PD from seat #1 to seat #4 and 2 spots are for the best teams inside the conference which are NOT divisional champs, sorted also by record and PD as seat #5 and #6, normally called wildcard teams or the wildcard seats.
Seats #1 and #2 get a bye week in the first playoff round and #3 plays #6 and #4 plays #5 in the wild card games for each conference.
The winners of the wild card games will play #1 and #2 of the conferences.
#1 gets the lowest remaining seated team, #2 the other one. This round is called the divisional playoffs.
The winners of the divisional playoff games will play for the conference championship.
For each round does the highest seated team be the home team.
After the two conference champions are decided, they will meet in the Bowl to find the league champion.
With that game the league games are over for all 32 teams and all teams have to wait for the season rollover.

The 2 conference champions will advance to a higher league (except for the Elite league conference champions, since there is no higher league).
For Elite league it’s clear which division they will enter, since they swap places with the two worst teams of the division the region is linked to.

Thunder Elite League AC East
Fire Elite League AC North
Claymores Elite League AC South
Admirals Elite League AC West
Sea Devils Elite League NC East
Monarchs Elite League NC North
Galaxy Elite League NC South
Dragons Elite League NC West

For all other promotions do the teams enter a division with an available spot, so it’s impossible to really plan the spot you might get into. It’s random within the available spots.

The divisional playoff losers will play in relegation games against the 5th to 8th worst teams from the league a level higher (except if you are level 1, since there are no relegation games between level 1 and Elite league). Those relegation games do happen one gameday prior the Bowl.

You can also promote through a BOT flush (except if you are a level 1 league team, since you can’t BOT flush to Elite) which means, that a lower league team get selected to fill a BOT spot in a league 1 level higher. It is possible that a BOT promotes to Elite league, because there is no BOT flush in Elite league, so the promotion is done as if the team is human controlled and the missing BOT flush prevents that the team gets instantly relegated again. That BOT has to play the full Elite league season to get down again. But that happened only once so far. You can avoid a BT promotion by a setup in your overall team settings. This would prevent for example that a completely new team from level 2 will go to level 1 and gets hammered for a complete season.

The schedule in the league games are always set up the same way with slightly differences regarding the opponents each season. As part of a conference and a division you play
- 6 games against your divisional rivals, 3 home games, 3 away games
- 4 games against a division not your own, but inside your own conference, 2 home games, 2 away games
- 4 games against a division from the other conference, 2 home games, 2 away games
- 2 games against random teams of your own conference, 1 home game, 1 away game
That’s 16 games , 8 home games, 8 away games and you will have 1 bye week in addition to complete the 17 league gamedays prior the playoffs.
Of cause your division rivals will just change based on promotions and relegations, the 2 played other divisions are each season randomly selected, so one season you play maybe the AC South and NC North and the next season you play AC North and NC West. Inside your own conference the chances are 1/3 to get the same division as last season, in the other conference it is 1/4. So it CAN happen that nothing chances, it’s likely something changes and it’s possible that all does change.

If you did not make the playoffs or lose during the playoffs and drop out of it you can schedule friendlies on the gamedays (Tuesday and Saturday) against the other teams from all RZA. Same is valid for that one bye week day, which is either a Tuesday or a Saturday. Those friendlies do give you not the income of a regular season home game, but some extra money and your players will also gain EXP as a positive effect and will also lose PC as a negative effect.

You can get trophies for winning a division, the conference or the league.
You get also a trophy for being a member of the elite league, regardless of the league results.

Since season 20 there is a capping on the PD calculation. If you do win with a margin of 60+ points against your opponent, the game is calculated like it was a margin of 60 points flat. The exact margin is still calculated in a different number (PDR) and comes into place when a tie breaker is needed in case of 2 or more teams have the same win-loss-record and the same official PD (that one with the flat calculation). In that case the PDR comes in place and the team with the higher number wins the tie breaker.

If you did finish in the whole league as worst team to 4th worst team, you get relegated automatically (except elite league, a different rules is used there). No deciding game, you just go down and get a spot in a lower level league (while their conference champs get promotion automatically). Which of the leagues in question you will enter is random. Level 1 will send teams to level 2.1 and 2.2.
Level 2.1 will send teams to 3.1 and 3.2 and 2.2 will send teams to 3.3. and 3.4 IF that relegation process is activated. At the moment the level 3 is closed, so the rules above is only valid for level 1 now. If level 3 opens again, this rule would be valid for level 1 and 2.
Elite league is different.
It is filled by teams from all 8 regions and each region has one linked division inside the Elite league, as written above. Each level 1 league conference champs of the 8 region do promote, so 16 teams do promote in total, each season. Therefore 16 teams have to relegate and it’s simply the case that the worst 2 teams of each division are selected. They do swap places with the 2 conference champs of the Elite league division linked to region.

If you did finish 5th worst to 8th worst in the whole league, you get a chance to play a relegation game against the conference championship game losers of a level deeper (again, except Elite league, no relegation games between level and Elite league). The winner gets the spot in the highest level league involved.

The Supercup is an inter-RZA organized competition. Each season all teams in the leagues and regions are put randomly into a high amount of divisions of 16 teams each and you do play against each of the 15 other teams inside your division one game.
Normally the engine does give the home right to the team with the biggest stadium, if both have the same size it’s chosen randomly.
Since teams can go BOT during the season it is wise to check the next opponent a few days before the game (each Monday and Thursday) whether the team went Bot and whether the game site has to be changed. If the home team is a BOT, your income will be much smaller than a game in a 144.300 stadium!
Once the regular games are played, every division champ gets a playoff spot and the rest of the 128 playoff spots are filled with the best teams of all divisions which are not divisional champs, based on their win-loss record and PD (tie breakers are the same as for league playoff spots).
The 128 playoff teams have to play against each other randomly and the winners do advance to the next round of 64, which do then play again play each other randomly and those winner do again advance and so on, until the last 2 teams standing do reach the final.
The final of the Supercup is called Global Bowl and the winner does get a trophy. No trophies for divisional champs in this competition.

The Supercup is with the Elite league the toughest competition, so if you win one, you can be quite proud.

Champ of Champs Cup
If you did win a conference in the last season, you do play Champs of Champ Cup in the current one.
The competition is automatically filled with all champs of Elite league, level 1 and level 2 and the rest is filled with BOTs to get a field of 64 teams for a playoff bracket. The pairings are random.
Why BOTs as fillers? To give no team a financial bonus which was NOT a champ a season before. Don’t ask me, what happens if all teams are human controlled. Probably a doomsday scenario.
2 Elite league champs, 16 regional league champs of level 1 and 32 of level 2 => 50 Champs are normally human, 14 teams are fillers.

The winners of the first round advance to the next round and so on until the last two teams do play the final. Classic knock out competition.
The winner of the final do get a trophy.
The competition is played on the Friday slot, so if you compete in the CoC you can’t play friendly games on Friday.
Be aware that the first round start late mid-season, so until then you CAN play friendlies on Friday and of cause you can play friendlies on Friday again once you did drop out of the CoC or the competition is ended. But since this is a major ticket income, I’m sure you won’t complain. ;-)

You can set up friendlies for free on every Friday (as long as no Champ of Champ Cup game is scheduled for you) and every Tuesday and Saturday in offseason and bye weeks. Normally the Tuesday and Saturdays are league game days.
The Friday friendlies can be set up by a challenge through some others teams overview page or by using the challenge pool tool, which will set up a game on Thursday (or on Friday for a Saturday game and on Monday for a Tuesday game), if the set up parameters do match the opponent parameters. There is a very small chance NOT to get a friendly by that tool, because some parameters are not right or not enough teams are available.
For example will the tool not set up an away game for you, if you did request a home game and not enough teams willing to play an away game are available.
So if you don’t mind the location, try home and away as parameter, under the risk to play in a small arena.
Normally the Friday games have between 30.000 and 40.000 visitors, so you should aim for at least that size of an arena, which is unfortunately not a parameter for the tool.
If you like to set up the friendly by yourself, you can challenge teams quite early, right on Saturday for the next Friday.

The Tuesday and Saturday games do generate a bit more income than the Friday matches, so they are worth a try in offseason and bye week, just for the money. Please be aware that you can challenge those games only 2 days ahead, so Sunday and Monday for Tuesday and Thursday and Friday for Saturday. If you try it earlier you won’t see that day as a possible gameday for a friendly on the challenge page.

There is no rule to play friendlies, so if you don’t like to, you don’t have to.
Each of those friendlies will generate EXP and will cost your players PC, if they participate. It’s less than a regular season game for league, Supercup or CoC, but it can help to build up EXP on your backups but will also slow their training a bit down (since you need to train PC more often eventually).

On all other gamedays you can challenge teams for a friendly which does not give you income and not EXP and won’t cost PC. Those games will cost 5 credits for each participant and are just for fun.

Friendly Cups
If you like you can participate in a friendly cup, which will grant you a trophy if you can win the cup. The trophy is free to configure by the cup manager, who does set up the cup, so you might even win not only a trophy, you might win a unique trophy.
The problem with the friendly cups is that you do need some Credits to participate or to set up a cup. The price range is from 25 Credits to 50 Credits and only the two finalists do get Credits in return, with a range of 63/32 Credits for winner and runner up for the smallest competition to 457/228 Credits for the biggest competition available.
In general all friendly cups do work the same way.
You have to set one up or you have to sign up for an already set up one.
As Cup manager you will get info about a team signing to your cup and you can sort them in the future cup divisions by sorting them on seat #1 up to the last seat which can be seat #8, seat #16 or seat #32 if the cup is that big. Or you can decline their participation and kick them of the cup.
The future division setup is based on the competition you selected and the seats you give the teams. For example a 2 division completion with 8 teams will have seat #1 to #8 and the division 1 will be filled with seats #1 to #4 and division 2 will be filled with #5 to #8.

As simple participant you do decide to sign up and you have to wait until the manager does confirm you or he rejects you.
Be aware that once you did sign up or set up a cup for one of the two possible days (Sunday and Wednesday), you can’t sign up for another cup on the same week day. You have to finish the cup or get out of the cup. This can be a problem, because sometimes it takes quite some time until a cup is full of participants and then all have to be able to still afford the cup. Sometime the manager had the credits when he did sign up and since then lost some credits and is not able to pay after some time when the cup likes to start. Worst case is that the team get kicked from the cup and another team has to be found.
At the moment the cup starts, it is basically another mini league competition. You can have up to 7 games in the divisional round phase and based on the selected options for the cup, a few of the teams get a playoff spot. In the playoffs every game can be the last. The divisional results do determine the playoff matches of the first round, with division winners playing the weakest playoff team from another division and so on.

Be aware that there are two modes of playing the cups, normal and power mode.
Normal mode does take your team and everything is like a league game or a supercup game. A big difference in team strength will always favour the stronger team and it’s hard to impossible to win a friendly cup in normal mode if you are not level 1 or Elite and such teams are in the mix.
Power mode does mean, that all players on gameday get a skill value of 40 on all skills, regardless the teams league or level. That means that a level 2 team can beat an Elite team, even big time. This mode is a good method to have many participants, since you can try to recruit in whole RZA, while in normal mode you might end up with a cup for the newer teams, or for the Elite teams or you like to restrict sign ups to certain strength levels (that has to be done manual, there is no parameter in the Cup setup to ensure such level).
Friendly cup games do not influence EXP, PC and they do also not generate income!

As last game variation you can plan scrimmages.
They do cost credits and do schedule a game between your team and … your team.
It’s purely to test some options in private, like playbooks, depth charts or game settings.
Sometimes it is helpfully to do such a scrimmage to get a feeling about changes to the playbook or depth chart, but they are not played regularly.
If you like to test some stuff, I suggest setting up several scrimmages to get different results per game. Because it can happen that a game does not end as expected and one game is not a good proof of concept for a playbook change. The game has a huge random factor so one game might mislead you on the results. Of cause you have to invest credits for every scrimmage you do setup, so think twice before you do setup 20 scrimmages and do wonder where the 100 credits went.
Scrimmages do not generate income and don’t cost PC and don’t gain your players any EXP.

That’s it, all game types are briefly described. I hope you did get the infos you were looking for.

Kommentare bitte hier / Comments please here

Last edited on 2016-06-21 06:44:00 by jack6

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Leverkusen Leopards

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posted: 2016-04-04 08:32:49 (ID: 100072742) Report Abuse
Chapter 14 - Create and maintain your Depth Chart
Version 1.0 - 30.06.2016

The Depth Chart is important to set up your players you like to see playing in the next game.
You better fill in every position with a player, even if you don’t have one on the position or you intent not to use one, because you play formations avoiding that position.
Regardless how good you set up a playbook, it might happen that a game situation occurs where no play is found in the playbook and then the game settings are used, which do leave the engine some room to become creative. Not a bad thing in general, but if you did not set up a player in each position and that position is suddenly needed on the field, ANY player on the roster might get a shot. Same is valid if you did not set up enough players for one position and based on energy levels and injuries suddenly another player is needed, where none is defined. Also here does the engine gets creative. You just don’t want your Kicker playing QB or your CB playing RB.
So better set up every position and if you lack players on that position, set up players you would like to see play in emergency, like a FB as RB or a CB as SF.
Some positions are quite heavy on players, like OL, DL and LB. You better set up a good amount of players on those positions to avoid bad plays. Because if no substitution is available at that moment when all the other players on that position do not fit the requirement regarding fitness, the engine become again creative and looks for players willing and able to step in.

Basic setup
You have to find your system on your own, but this might help.

Hard to find a substitution, it’s worth to set up 2 players at least.

It can happen that even a third player gets some snaps and if you use RB heavy formations, like Pro-Set, very often, even a fourth players comes in hand. You can mitigate a risk here by setting up a FB as backup-backup or worse.

Normally one player is enough, but sometimes the backup needs to step up. If you lack a good backup, try a TE if you block a lot and a RB if you rush a lot.

Since there are sets with four receivers, five to six should be considered, but that depends on your choice of formations. At Worst case it’s worth to think about a TE as last line of backups.

In general two TEs are enough to play through a game, except you play double TE formations a lot. If you rush a lot a FB might be the backup-backup choice, if you need a catching player, you can consider a WR as last substitution.

There are managers who try to have players for each position (OT, OG, OC) separately. If you like to go that way, you need two backups on every position and two starters, but you might consider a shared OG/OC backup as minimum or even just one backup per positions OT and OG and then a shared second backup for all positions.
Some do setup the starters on each position and do use the same backups on every position in the line based on their skills to ensure the best fit backup on any position if needed. That does leave you with some kind of lottery if you try to have a specific skill set on OT, OG or OC.
Even a system which does only setting up 8 to 10 players equally on all positions is possible, which would mean that the best 5 players are used as starters and the rest is backup. Over the game it can then happen that some of the best 5 players do switch positions because the original used player is not fit at that moment. You do have always the 5 fittest players on the field, but not always the 5 best players for each position, based on skills.
The numbers are more or less the same, 8 to 10 players are needed here anyway.
Some decide to put the best OL on the OT spot, some decide to put the fastest one on the OT spot.
The OC is needed less often, because the defense does often not field a NT as opponent, so it might be wise to put the worst starter on OC.
If you are short an OL, use a TE or a FB as last backup.

It’s not worth to think about an NT very long, except you might use him in a 5 men line setup very often. Even then it seems a real primary starter is wasted here.
Most managers do settle with one of their dedicated DT players, could be the best, the second best or the third best. Not setting a player would be not helpful, you never know what happens.
The DT are usually the strong ones, while the DE are the fast ones. Because of rotation scenarios you can work similar to the OL-rotation, so either having backups per position or a shared backup pool for the whole line or even setting up 8 to 10 liners for every position and work with that.
Since the DE are quite important at the moment and do record the most sacks and TFL it’s wise to use at least the best or fastest DL as DE and to use them only as DE. But at the end it’s your decision.
If you are short on DL players, use a LB as last backup.

In general the same rules as for the liner. You can decide to use OLB and MLB as dedicated starters and backups or you can use some or all players as pool.
Most managers do see as MLB the smartest guy on the defense as a must and INT values with 45+ are not uncommon here. Of cause, if you use a LB pool for the whole LB-group you have no real influence on the MLBs intelligence on the field, as long as you did not get Einsteins-only as LBs.
Some managers do see the OLB as the spot for the best LB on the team, since many passing routes are defended by the LB in general and short passes are common and the short pass areas are often defended by the OLBs.
Under such circumstances it makes sense to have at least a mixture of dedicated players on a single position and a pool backup plan.
In general it’s possible to have here 7 to 8 players on the roster.

This bunch is the crew to work against the pass quite often and it’s worth to consider them as the best needed DBs on the field. Yes, the SFs are also needed, but CBs will make a lot of tackles and you just want them to MAKE the tackle and not to have them beaten and to wait for your super SF to bottle up the play a few yards deeper on the field.
There are some formations which do need a lot of CBs, so you will have to work here with 5 to 6 CBs.
If you are short on CB, use fast LBs or a spare SF as backup.

Some do see them as total separated players and have for each position at least a backup ready. Some just use the same 3 to 4 players for all positions.
Common mind set is that the SS needs to be stronger and the FS needs to be smarter and faster.
If you have a SF short, use a smart CB or a LB as a spare.

The Kicker is a single specialist which is used only on a few plays, but those are important. It’s quite ridiculous to have a backup here, but if you need one, because the Kicker gets injured, you play lottery. Never the less, the risk is quite slim and you will very likely settle with 1 player here.

Same here, the Punter is in the same situation as the K.
As a mitigation strategy it might be wise to train both your K and P as K/P hybrid, either as a specialist which could also play the other position if needed, like KIC = 40 and PUN = 25 for the K and the other way around for the P, or you a full hybrid with KIC and PUN the same value.
By that you can set the best K/P hybrid as starter and you might settle a prospect as backup, knowing the he will very likely never play as long as he is a backup.

As said earlier, I don’t see a G as a special position. Better use fast LBs, CBs or SFs as G and set up 2 to 4 players here to be save.
If you still insist on having specialized Gs, have two as a minimum and put the LBs, CBs or SFs as backups.

Same for the returner. In general you do need only two starter here and if you really like to have the specialist, don’t use more. Use RBs or even FBs as backups.
My suggestion is to go directly for the RBs and skip the KR at all.

The special team blockers are needed to block on return plays. The opinions are quite spread here, whether fast, strong or blocking in general are the primary skills needed. Since you need 8 to 10 names in this list, you will have to use OLs anyway, the question is, whether they are used high on the list or low. Up to you.
I do use most of my best blockers on this, but do also look for SPE.

The special team tacklers are more or less like the gunners. Use your fastest and best tacklers here.

Out of position
Be aware that except the G, KR and K/P a player with a roster position different than the depth chart position will get an out-of-position-penalty, means he will play worse on that position than on his roster position. So think twice before you add too many players on different positions.
I did put my tips regarding “if you are a player short, use a different player” there if you don’t have any other chance to fill the spots. Because it’s better to have for example an out-of-position-CB playing SF, instead of randomly selected player playing SF, which does STILL gets the penalty.
So if you do setup that last player for substitution in a worst case scenario, think about him as the best of the worst things to happen. Better you s e l e c t a player than the engine.
On the other hand some managers do use a lot of out of position players, normally as mitigation strategy on training (for example training all defenders as DL, since the DL AC has the highest CP) but believe me, this will not help you on the field. But it’s your decision. If you try something like that, be aware that many managers do not approve such line-ups and will get mad, personal or public.

The line up in general
As non-supporter you can only setup one depth chart, as supporter some more, which can be quite useful.
Non-supporters either have to rework their depth chart again and again to have backups on the field when some meaningless games are played and therefore the backups and prospects can get experience and build up the TC if needed.
Support can set up different depth charts for exactly that purpose and even more.
If you like you can build different line ups for run heavy and pass heavy games. Of cause you need the players to do so, but sometimes slightly changes can have huge effects. Since you only have 55 players on the depth chart, it might come in hand to have at some positions destined to do the heavy load more backups and have a few less on other positions with less traffic.
If you play a lot of Pro Set, go for more RBs and less FB, lots of TE formations, put in more TEs and less WR. Playing only with 6 DBs and a few LBs? Adjust the depth chart to have always the best or the fittest on the field.

Line-up rules
The engine does fill the spots on a formation from left to right, so the highest sorted WR will play starter on the left, the second best will be either starter on the inner left on a 4WR set or the starter on the right.
That’s valid for all positions.
If it comes down to conflicts, the position pick in following priority:

QB -> RB -> FB -> TE -> WR -> OT -> OG -> OC

DE -> DT -> NT -> OLB -> MLB -> CB -> SS -> FS

Special teams
K/P -> G -> STT

That means, if you decide to put in a player on several positions, like OLs or DLs, and you like to have a specific player at a specific spot, you have to sort the player accordingly. Otherwise that player will end up on a different spot as intended. But even then this setup is only valid as long as no substitution is needed.
If you like to avoid mixing up players, you should put in always dedicated players on dedicated positions, like having OTs as starter and backups and only there, OG set up also with different players and OCs also. Only then will at least an OL meant to play OG play only OG. (except some major injury happens and the engine gets creative). You only have to deal in that case with the sorting on the position itself. Still the highest sorted will play left, the next is starter right in case of an OL and the next is the highest backup and so on. With backups it’s not possible to link them to a specific spot, just the position and the engine does decide whether they play left or right, depended on the need at that moment.

Given that system on offense and defense means, that you need also to adjust the line up if you like to have your best CB play the opponents best WR (assuming he did sort that guy highest on his depth chart. Otherwise it’s anybody’s guess.). The best CB should then be sorted second best on your depth chart.
This is only valid for most of the plays during the game, until the substitutions happen. Still, this could make a difference.
Or you like to rush with your best DE over the opponents worst OT? Adjust your depth chart to have the chance exploiting that weakness. But there is not guarantee, since you never know the final line up of your opponent until gameday and substitutions do happen.

Really really first string
If you build your depth chart you get your depth chart members on the right side shown, based on the selected position. Next to the players healthy status is on the most right side a check box, which you can click.
If that box is set that player will play the whole game regardless of substitution rules in the game settings (see chapter 15) and regardless how many other players you did put into the depth chart on that position. So if you like to have you best QB play the whole game, click that box and he will do that (as long as he is healthy).
If you did set up more players on the depth chart, like liners or linebackers, and did click more than 1 of those players to be “first string”, the engine will s e l e c t those players with best in game energy. If that is equal the sorting in the depth chart comes into play again.
What does that mean?
Assuming you did setup 5 WR and you did click the first 3 players as first string, in a 2 WR formation the engine will work at the beginning with the first two players and if their energy level comes down, the third WR gets his shot. The fourth and fifth WR are never selected as long as no injury occurs and no 4 WR formation is selected.
WR1 -> X
WR2 -> X
WR3 -> X
I-Formation -> left WR = WR1, right WR = WR2
Shotgun 4WR -> left outer WR = WR1, right outer WR = WR2, left inner WR = WR 3, right inner WR = WR4
If you click a player down the depth chart to be first string and he is not sorted as starter, the engine does still s e l e c t that player as first WR. To a l t e r the example above, assume you have 5 WR in the depth chart sorted and the second and the fourth are clicked as first string.
The engine will use those clicked ones as starters, all other not clicked WR will play as backups only in a 4 WR formation as third and fourth WR.
WR2 -> X
WR4 -> X

I-Formation -> left WR = WR2, right WR = WR4
Shotgun 4WR -> left outer WR = WR2, right outer WR = WR4, left inner WR = WR 1, right inner WR = WR3

So basically what the engine does is, if a first string click is done for a position, the configured depth chart is divided in two lists, the clicked one and the not clicked one. Both lists are sorted according to the depth chart sorting, if the players from the other lists would not exist.
Then the engine does fill the spots first out of the clicked list, then, if additional players are needed, out of the not clicked list. That “needed” is only valid for injuries and additional bodies on the field, not for regular substitution.

This might be a useful tool for you, depended on you strategy and you game approach. Many do use this mechanism for positions which do need only a few players and if they want their best player on the field the whole game, like QB.

Kommentare bitte hier / Comments please here

Last edited on 2016-06-30 06:35:51 by jack6

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Leverkusen Leopards

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posted: 2016-04-04 08:32:54 (ID: 100072743) Report Abuse
Chapter 15 - Game settings or death
Version 1.0 - 30.06.2016

Regardless of the game type you have to play or want to play, the game settings have to be set up to ensure a good game performance. Because in case you did not set up a game setting for the game, the engine will get creative and that’s never a good thing. Normally that means your team will not play better than a BOT team, since no depth chart is selected and no rules for substitution and game plays are setup. Better avoid that and set up a default game setting, at least.

Once you did set up a default set and did save this, it gets a bit more secure.
With a default game setting you will have the security that you have at least THAT setup used if you might have forgotten to setup a game specific setting.
But this system can be corrupted. For example it can happen that you did delete you depth chart or your playbook for a new one and the old default game setting were not adjusted. In that case that nonsense setting is used and whenever there is no useful part available (no playbook, no depth chart) the engine will again become creative and you will very likely lose that game.

Step by step a game setting

Depth Chart
Let’s start with the selected depth chart. As non-supporter you just have one single one, so if you like to have different players playing in a friendly or an easy to win league- or Supercup-game you need to adjust that on the depth chart page. In the game settings it’s only stored which depth chart should be used and 1 hour before the game you can’t change that anymore in the settings or in the depth chart page.
If you are a supporter you have the choice to store different depth charts and you better use that. I suggest at least 2 different depth charts, the default one and a chart including all the prospects. With the prospects you can now play all games which are easy to win and grant EXP gain and the game settings will help you to do that without a big effort. Just create 2 game settings to play with, one with the default depth chart and one with the prospects depth chart and at the end you can use both settings with a few clicks on the games-page with no real effort furthermore, as long as you don’t like to change something inside the settings.
So to s e l e c t a depth chart, s e l e c t one out of the drop down list and keep in mind, that changes after that on the depth chart page on those depth charts will have an effect here. That goes as far that if you might delete one, the game setting will of cause no longer use that and does switch to the standard depth chart or gets creative.

Fitness Level
The fitness level for substitution will give a general rule when the players should leave the field for a short period to take a breath and recharge their energy.
During the game they will lose a virtual energy threshold and that selected percentage does determine the barrier, when the substitution has to be done.
So if you set up a value of let say <90%, you will see the backup entering the field earlier in the game than if you set up a value of <50%. This does lead to different behaviour on the field.
Imagine your backup enters when your starter is at 89% and plays a few plays, until the starter is fit enough to come back, maybe 93%. Then the starter will play again some snaps and the backup will enter again. This will go on until also the backup might get under the 90% rule and if the starter is still not fit enough, the backup backup comes to play, until the starter or the backup is fit again.
This dance will happen over the whole game and will very likely start in the 1st quarter with a level of 90% selected.
Now, with a level of 50%, your starter will play, every down, until he is down to 49% for example and your fresh backup comes into the game. He will play a few downs until the starter is fit enough to take over again. Then the backup will play again once the starter is again under 50% and so on. It’s quite unlikely that the backup will also get down to 50% in the rest of the game, but can happen. Anyway, in this example the process will very likely only start to happen in the 3rd or even 4th quarter.
The high level (like <90%) will that way balance the plays more out than the mid-level approach (like <50%). You can even go much deeper than 50%, with <21% is the smallest value selectable, which would mean that very likely your backups will enter very late in the game or never.
On the other side of that process will your overall-game-PC-loss be much higher for the starter of he plays more downs, means you s e l e c t a low level substitution barrier. That means the starter will train slower, since he needs more PC training over the season.
There is no real right or wrong here it’s all depended on your players and your starter and backup situation.
The problem is, you can only set this for ALL positions in general. The next checkboxes and radio buttons will help to make exceptions in some kind of way (see later), but overall there is no way to say, QB at 50% and OL at 70%, DL at 60% and K at 100%.

Handle Substitutions
The radio buttons under the topic ‘how to handle the substitution’ will work on top of the energy level setup.
If you s e l e c t the radio button with energy level it uses the described barrier set up.
Otherwise you need to s e l e c t the radio button to not substitute for some quarters or even all game long, which will make this the primary rules for substitution until the rule is fulfilled and after that the energy level with its barrier is used. That means ALL positions and ALL players will not substitute based on that rules. It’s hard on PC loss after the game, so be aware of the results.
The last radio button is not active, so don’t bother. For now, playbook ruled substitutions are not possible.

Next comes the more interesting substitution option which allows to stop substitutions based on positions. Just s e l e c t the check box with the position you would like to see play all game with their starter(s) and it will happen (as long as no injuries come up). Many managers do s e l e c t not so position heavy positions like QB, FB, TE or SF for such an option.
This is only overwritten by the “first string” check box in your depth chart (see Chapter 14).

Next comes the playbook selection part for offense and defense and that’s almost similar from the process point of view as the depth chart. Non-supporters just have one, supporter can have more.
Changes on the selected playbooks AFTER the setup will have impact on gameday.
And also changes after the game do have an impact, because you always can see afterward your game settings and the selected playbook, but if you did change the playbook (or the depth chart also) since then, the information is no longer 100% correct. There are no versions stored of the same playbook or depth chart. Anyway, for supporters it’s better to have several playbooks to easily switch between game strategies based on the next opponents values. You expect a pass heavy opponent, you might have a playbook to counter that better than your default one. You need a better run offense from time to time, you better setup a run heavy playbook to s e l e c t it here.
Keep in mind that if you like to use the quick setup feature on the games page, you need to create different game settings with good names to handle this easily. If you did, it’s all just a few clicks for each game to setup the wanted game setting against each different opponent.

Play Intensity
The next option is the play intensity. It allows you to set up a level of let’s say motivation you team will bring to a game.
‘Relaxed’ is quite self-explaining. The players will not play on 100% and therefore a game against an opponent playing normal or even MOTY will very likely end in a loss if the opponent is not way weaker than your team. Your players will not lose much PC after the game and they will not gain a lot of EXP out of that game.
This might be an option if you like to lose on purpose or the result of the game is not important and you like to keep your PC hit of a game as low as possible. Keep in mind that a loss will also cost you a MOR loss, but not as high as normally, if that game was a regular season game or a Supercup division game (if it’s a playoff game for any competition you will also lose MOR, but it does not matter much, since you are ending your season on that competition with that game) and if you have to play a game the next few days, you might enter the next game with MOR < 100%. The manual does explain it very well. On friendly cups this intensity is not possible to use, all setups are interpreted as ‘normal’.
Anyway, if you like to use that option, use it, it can be used for any game (except friendly cups) you like to use it for.

The intensity type ‘normal’ is the regular intensity which is used for most of the games. Some managers do use only this kind of intensity. There is not much else to say about this, only that this is the highest intensity you can use in any playoff competitions and the only intensity useable in friendly cups.

The intensity type MOTY ‘match of the year’ is an option you can use only once a season during regular season league games and during Supercup division games. No MOTY for any playoff game and if you did use it once on a regular season game you can’t use it again in a regular season game and if you did use it once in a Supercup division game you can’t use it in another Supercup division game. This setup will motivate your players the most and they will fight with greatest effort, resulting in higher MOR gain, higher EXP gain and higher PC loss (which is even a bit higher than most will expect). This is a joker you should use only if needed and you should think about the consequences, because there is no win guarantee in this and even if you win that game, the PC hit might spoil not only the next game coming, but also a few more. It can help big time if a special game is the most important one for your team and a playoff spot or a promotion or relegation is depended on that result. Sometimes it happens that a favourite to win a supercup or league division it facing several weaker opponent on MOTY gameday after gameday, because for all other teams THAT’s the important game and for the favourite it’s fighting for live because he now might face several opponents better than they are advertised on paper.
There is also no MOTY in relegation games.

Punt and Field Goal
The next setup point is the Punt / Field goal-Settings.
This allows specifying the distance to the goalline from which point on the team should try a field goal instead of punting. The distance can be between <5 yards (so max a 21 yard field goal) up to < 50 yards (max a 66 yard field goal).
Be aware that this setting is overwritten, if a line in the playbook does fit for the game situation, regardless of the result (in terms of go for it, kick a FG or punt or whatever).

Next entry in the settings is the ‘Go for 4th down when yards to go’ option.
This is also a setup which is overwritten by a playbook, if a line which fits is found in the playbook.
You can configure distances from < 2 yards to < 6 yards, so in general between 0 to 5 yards.

Down Rule Settings
As last setup you get the option to configure some general rules for 1st , 2nd and 3rd down and in case you did setup a rules to go for it on 4th down even for that.
This is always the same logic, you can setup a Rush / Pass distribution, with’ mainly rush’ having the engine selecting somewhat of around 90% to 95% run, ‘prefer rush’ with around 75% pass preference, ‘pass and rush’ with a 50%/50% setup for passes and rushes and ‘prefer pass’ and ‘mainly pass’ analogue the run options only with a preference on passing.
You can then s e l e c t a preferred Direction which can be chosen from ‘only left flank’ up to only right flank’, ‘both flanks’ and as wildcard ‘all directions’. The engine will s e l e c t plays directed to that positions, so if you avoid a certain area, use a direction which should be penetrated.
Next do come to formation selection drop downs, holding all formations available, ‘Big I formation’, ‘Flexbone’, ‘Goalline O’, ‘I-formation’, ‘Pro set’, ‘Shotgun 2 WR’, ‘Shotgun 4 WR’, ‘Singleback Big’, ‘Singleback Spread’ and ‘Wishbone’. On top you can s e l e c t ‘random’ as wildcard.
The wildcard are quite useful, because can allow all kind of formations by this, which might confuse the defense. But it can also backfire, since right that moment the formation is selected the opponent can defend best against.
The important info on this is, that down setups can be overwritten by a playbook, so most managers with a matured roster will have a playbook and therefore won’t use much of this play calling tool. Anyway, at the start this is very helpful and it is also the fallback if the playbook does have a hole for some scenarios. Review your games and if you did find odd looking plays, they might result out of this situation, no playbook line and the engine did pick a play based on the setting.

Save your default or for a single game
If you did setup all option in all fields and combo boxes you can save the setting for a single game, or as a default (or special) game setting which can be used on the games page for setting up game settings with that very easy way with checkboxes and a small combo box (where you should be able to find your game settings)

Kommentare bitte hier / Comments please here

Last edited on 2016-06-30 06:46:07 by jack6

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Leverkusen Leopards

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posted: 2016-04-04 08:33:00 (ID: 100072744) Report Abuse
Chapter 16 - The gruesome playbook
Version 1.0 - 05.07.2016

The Playbook is the ultimate control over you teams plays on the field.
It does override all game settings, if a play is found in it, matching the current situation on the field.
If no play is found, the engine takes the game settings as guideline or becomes creative.

If you are new on this game and you face the task of creating your first playbook, don't start too complicated, better start simple and evolve from that.
It might be a good start to just work with the most extreme situations, which the game settings don't cover, like a last second field goal or running the clock out in the final minutes while leading.

Creating a playbook is the most difficult task in this game, and there are managers which struggle with this since ages, which do avoid this task completely or which keep the structure of the playbook to a minimum.
The reasons are not necessarily that they don't GET the tasks, they might just don't have the time to build up a playbook needed for the top of the game, or they don't want to change the playbook for every opponent.
Or they have a good plan in theory but the match itself comes out completely different.

I will be honest with you here: I'm a lazy manager in regards of playbooks.
I have created several, and most were OK or sufficient enough to win games, championships or to compete with the best (although I never won an Elite Bowl, a Supercup (Global Bowl) or a Champ of Champs cup, sorry), but they did always lack that extra "mile" (or just an “inch”) to be the best playbook possible against that particular team.
I'm lazy preparing against opponents, I do invest my time in other things (like writing this guide or writing the Block of Granite College Football Blog) so I'm not THE playbook guru you might seek.
Regardless I will try to give you an overview and at the end you will need to build a playbook on your own anyway.

Combining playbooks
There is a defense part and an offense part of the playbook and you can create many playbooks, which you then can mix up in the game settings.
You can say "take as offense playbook 1 and as defense playbook 2" and next game you could setup some other combination.
This can come in handy if you did set up for example a run stopper defense and on another playbook a pass stopper defense.
Then you could switch the defense selected prior the game, based on the strength of the opponent.
What you can't do is to mix 2 playbook offense rules, like first half playbook 1 and second half playbook 2. Not possible on the highest level, means game settings.
You could create a new playbook 3, containing the rules of 1 and 2 and make it the way described, but that takes time and effort. You might even have to adjust several rules just to fit. Time and effort.

What does a playbook do?
Each line in the playbook will represent a game situation and with so many wildcard possibilities ("any" on several parameters), you can set up quit general rules and you can set up on the other hand rules which might happen only once a season or even never in several seasons.
Keep in mind that the engine will look into the playbook on each down and will s e l e c t the best matching play based on these rules:
1) Take all given parameters and get all plays fitting to the parameters
2) If no rule is found fitting, take the game settings rules
3) If as a minimum one rule is found, take the highest sorted rule out of the found rule set.

Keep that in mind when you do set up rules, because a wrongly sorted rule might never be taken, even if that was the initial intention to put it into the playbook and to use it in exactly that situation.

Assuming you did set up a general rule for 4th down, punting the ball, regardless of score, field position, quarters and so on.
It's your safety-net you did set up to ensure a punt when all other 4th down situation do not happen.
Now you do set up a field goal rule for 4th down, when you are inside the opponents red zone.
You did put that rule UNDER the general rule.
The engine will now punt, even in the red zone, since on 4th down inside the red zone the engine does now find 2 rules fitting the parameters and will pick the higher sorted one, the general rule.

The Checker Tool
This can become very complicated, since you can set up rules with wildcards and no wildcards on many parameters and it's not always clear which rule will be taken in certain situations.
For that the checker tool is implemented, on top right of the playbook screen.
There you can put in all situations you like to get checked and the tool will highlight the rule which would be taken.
What it does not is, to show you all rules fitting the situation so you can see the rules the engine did pick that final rule from as highest sorted rule.

Deactivation of rules
There is next to every rule a small circle which can be clicked.
If that circle is clicked, it means the rule is deactivated.
It will be ignored for the next match as if it is not in the playbook.
That can be quite helpful to setup aggressive and not so aggressive plays and depended on the opponent you can activate or deactivate such rules.
But keep in mind, the more you put in, the more work it becomes to have those in the right status prior a game and the more error prone it can become.
I suggest to create a separate playbook, if a certain amount of rules to check or uncheck are exceeded and it becomes a nightmare to work with it.

The Engine
Building a playbook is linked to the game engine.
If you know Football in detail and you think you could build a playbook in real life, you can forget almost everything about this.
The only thing which will help is the understanding of game situations, like last second field goals or how to secure a win.
Since you have to predefine all rules, there is no way to make in-game decision as coach on the sidelines would be able to do.
That means, you have to think about situations and you have to find a solution for this, but this is limited by the engines behaviour.
And don't forget the gameday random factors, which are not transparent, like coaches consistency.
A real live coach would be able to adapt, you will have to set up a rule set and then live with it.

Hail Mary Bomb? Not possible the way you did see it on TV. You can try to pass deep, but no chance to order a 50+ yard pass for sure.
Spiking the ball to stop the clock? Not implemented, the clock is simulated but there is no real time management, which can become a problem at the end of each halftime, especially if you are behind.
Fake punt? Nope, not implemented. No trick plays possible.
Crazy Formations like overloaded formations or other fancy stuff? Not implemented. All formations will line up perfectly. You could only switch to strange combinations like defending a 4 WR set with a goalline defense.
Reverses? Miss direction plays? Nope. As said, no trick plays. In fact no real plays available as seen on TV or Madden NFL.
That's not a critic, just a fact.

The engine does work with several pre-defined formations on offense and defense and does basically offer run, pass, pass medium and pass long as offense plays and does allow a pre-defined expectation for pass or run on defense and also a go-for-a-blitz-rule on defense.
That's it, if you ignore special team plays like punt and field goal.
Doesn’t sound as much, but the possibilities are quite wide and managers do easily get confused with a complete playbook, especially if it became a big monster with hundreds if not thousands of lines (I would recommend thousands of lines, but it’s up to you ;-) )

The order of playcalling
The offense is always the acting part on the field; the defense does react on the offense.
So if you did setup a rule for 1st down to run from I-Formation through the middle, the opponents defense "play" is based on a line in his playbook (if there is such a line or playbook) which does look on the game situation and selects a rule which fits this, if available including the I-Formation.
That rule has a pre-defined expectation and based on this and eventually already learned behaviour in this quarter the defense does line up.
If the defense did line up with "run" in mind, that offense play might get stuffed on the line of scrimmage or after short yardage, but based on calculations can result in good gains.
If the defense did line up with "pass" in mind, the run will very likely result in a bigger gain (compared to a “run” setup, but maybe not, depended on the calculation happening. Chances are just higher for a big gain.
If the defense has no real clue it will lean on the pre-defined expectation in the playbook.
So to create the best results it would be good to "know" prior the game, which formation you will face and what they do.
The offense can try to "exploit" weak defense setups, while the defense can try to "exploit" regular happening plays with the right formation and expectation.
That it and at the same point the start of all problems.

It might sound too easy, but basically it comes down to this:
Try to find the weaknesses of your opponent and get the best result possible out of this.

The Problem
Both teams will in best case change their playbooks based on their scouting results and on gamedays will then eventually something totally different happen.
It's like a cloak and dagger game, with both teams not really knowing what's coming and both teams guessing how to play and how to react.
And even if both teams KNOW what will happen in terms of formation and play type, the calculations can still work in favor of the offense or defense.

The surprising truth is, that a simple short playbook is not necessarily inferior to a complex multi-hundreds of lines playbook.
Simple playbooks might have spots which can be attacked easily, but they can also be changed quickly, while a complex playbook is more or less a monolith hard to change and also hard to attack, but eventually not fit against THAT specific opponent.

Regardless of the approach it’s always best to put the best players on the field, which can even result into an advantage on the field so big that the opponent can’t match that, even if he knows what’s coming or what’s going to happen.

Run vs Pass
At the moment it looks like it is easier to pass than to run.
This is eventually a bit based on the fact that most managers do NOT scout their opponent in details and getting this way easily in problems you would not face if you would have scouted the opponent in total. That’s a time and effort problem.
But it also looks like that a run in general is tougher to accomplish with the current engine.
I remember times when running was THE monster play and passing was for suicide managers or the desperate ones.
That has shifted over the seasons, with some adjustments in the involved calculations on pass plays.

Passing is THE BIG THING now and it has a lot of benefits.
The most important one is that a "pass" play (not a fixed pass medium or long one) will aim for a first down, while a run will have to work its way through the line, the linebackers and defensive back field to eventually getting the first down.
It's easier to get that first down with ONE play passing than running.

The “Pass”-option
Because it fit here, a short explanation to "pass" as an option
The option "Pass" includes all sort of pass plays, depended on the yardage needed for a first down.
That means screen, short, medium and deep.
The difference between option "pass" and the two options "pass medium" and "pass deep" as predefined options is, that "pass" will used the range needed for a first down, while the other two will fix the attack on that particular pass plays.
So if the yardage needed for a first down are high enough the "pass" will also become a medium or deep pass, with all the consequences on yards and turnovers.
You can't switch that off!
On the other hand, most downs need a distance under 10 yards, which does result in a short pass, which is a quite save option.

The possible description you will find in the game reports and their translations for distances are
negative yards -> screen pass
0-10 -> short pass
10-20 -> medium pass
20+ -> deep pass

The run on the other hand does allow a better ball security.
Nothing is more frustrating than having scored the leading TD and stopped the opponent and then throwing an interception for a pick six to the house to tie the game or even getting up front.
Fumbles do happen also, but not that often.
If you think about using "pass medium" or "pass long", be aware that both plays have a tendency to turn the ball over more often than the regular "pass" play.
That turnover rate is such high that some managers do not use those plays as predefined play at all.

In general is rushing a bit better for low skilled teams against low skilled teams, because the rushing calculation is not that complicated and there are not many players involved.
Snap - Center to QB
Handover - QB to RB/FB
Block calculation - 5 OLs vs 3 to 5 DL
Blitz calculation
Running vs DL
Running vs Backfield

On the other hand is passing loaded with calculations
Snap - Center to QB
Receiver Selection
Block calculation - 5 OLs vs 3 to 5 DL
Blitz calculation
Coverage calculation - WR vs CB or OLB
Catching calculation
Interception calculation
Run calculation, based on the point of catching and the remaining backfield

On almost every point of those calculation can something bad happen and you have to get through all this to get a good run or pass.
With low skills, the chance to have something bad happening is higher on passing, since more calculations do happen.
With higher skills the chance are high you go through the first few calculation without a big chance of anything bad happens.
At that point the overall results get more weight, meaning that a successful run is in general shorter than a successful pass in average and you need less successful plays for a first down on passing than on rushing.

That's more or less my take in this, but the calculation part is more or less a high level explanation of Peter a while back, so the engine will very likely do something like that.

That means also that it's important to have the formations in order.
A 5 men defense front should have better results against the o line than a 4 men or even 3 men front.
A 3 men defense back field will help in some cases the offense quite significant, when the first tackle attempt fails and only green is between the WR and the goalline.

In generall you can say the formations are used this way:

pass happy -> run happy
Shotgun 4 WR
Singleback Spread
Singleback Big
Shotgun 2 WR
Pro set
Big I formation
Goalline O

against pass -> against rush
Dime 4DL MLB 4CB 2SF
Goalline D

That’s also my take, but the overall direction should be valid.

Strategies on Offense
Based on the defense expectation behaviour one solution could be an almost scripted playbook.
Like 5 times run from one formation and then 5 - 10 times pass from the same formation
The effect would be that the opponents defense would initially maybe expect run right away or would switch to run after a few play and if then pass does happen, it will take some time to switch back again, which should help to gain some yards.
Problem with that is, there is no counter to configure rules with, so all you could do is to think about a start and configure a switching point when it is best or best possible.
Could be yards to go, could be field position or could be time to play.
Keep in mind that a defense will learn again eventually with every quarter change, so those confusion should better start in the same quarter and you better set up new confusing plays for each quarter.

If you know the substitution rules of your opponent you might try to create mismatches, as long as the starting formation is on the field.
That is of cause a major influence from depth chart and substitution rules, but the selected plays do come from the playbook.
You might set up you best WR on the right to get him covered by the second best CB of the opponent and pass right more often.
Or you know the LBs are not the best and you do pass middle and your super TE does his star player thing all day long.

Also a good strategy could be to have several playbooks available eventually doing the same playcalling in terms of rules and priorities, but all do differ in run and pass or in formations or just in certain situations.
The basic idea is, that the more different formations and plays you do give your future opponents to analyse, the less they can scout you for your next game. The opponent would have to either setup some kind of generic defense or he has to guess which play calling might happen most likely and with more playbooks to choose from, the less are the chances to have that guess done right.

Strategies on defense
A major decision you will have to make is whether you like to have a rule for every formation per game, half or quarter.
Because the engine will work with what's defined, a rule per quarter will mean, the engine will start learning, again, each quarter.
Same for the half and for the game.
So if you did setup just a rule for the game, the opponent might bring you off guard when switching plays from run to pass on certain formation in second half or fourth quarter.
Because if your defenses learned to defend pass in the majority on that formation and the opponent starts running, it might take some time to switch to run defense.
Maybe too much time is needed for that and you will see your defense allowing huge yardage gains until the game is over.
A rule per Quarter will mean the team will reset and starts learning from scratch and might switch to run defense much faster even if the playbook still said pass as starting point.
On the other hand will a very well learned defense against a quite static offense get the best results probably later in the game and a reset might destroy the learned results.
Tough choice, but most managers do set up rules for each quarter.

The major problem on defense in general is, that it will always react and it will learn, but will not get smart.
If the team did play pass from I-formation all day long the defense will expect more often pass from I-formation later in the game, but it will not get smart enough to expect a run on 3 and short from I-formation, if you did not setup a rule for that. A coach on the sideline would expect such a thing, the engine will decide based on the playbook rules and the learned behaviour.
The defense will just remember pass for that I-formation play in that example and will line up that way, probably to get run over.
It will also not play better against pass later in the game even if the prediction is right, compared to an earlier right predicted play.
The calculation will happen the same way and the players stats will decide the outcome.
For example does a 5-3-3 tend to be quite weak against the pass and also against the run it can happen that you get big plays on offense against such a formation.
So if you do setup this defense against run in the opponents half and the engine does his thing, it can happen that no players is available to make the tackle after the first try.
This can result in 80+ yards TD plays, which is the reason some managers do use that run stuffer defense only in their own half or even own red zone.
Most extreme defense formation is the goalline defense which you better consider as such.
There is a huge potential to get beaten on that defense if you use it mid field, but if there is not much room to lose to the endzone, the goalline defense might be you friend to stop the opponent from scoring.

Many managers do keep the defense easy and try to cover only extreme situations with extra rules, like goalline plays, long distance downs with 20+ yards or 3rd down situation with 7+ or even 10+ yards. Some even skip those special rules. It’s always a question of time and effort.

Strategies on special teams
This is more about the when-to-use-special-teams, then what to do with them.
Because special teams do just happen. You will setup a K, a P, some G, some KR and some special team blockers and tacklers on depth chart and from that point on you will just call plays, when needed or rules do demand them (like Kickoffs).
But you better think about it when to use special team plays.
When to punt and when to kick a field goal?
General rule is to punt on fourth down, since if you did not punt and you did not made that first down on 4th down, the opponent will get the ball right at the spot of the last tackle, which could be deep inside your territory.
So punt is better, great. You can set that one up on game settings are as a generic line inside the playbook.
But should you always punt?
Of cause not.
It's obvious you don't need to punt on your opponents 1 yard line, right in front of the endzone, right?
4th and goal on the 1, you can decide to go for it as a play and you might turn the ball over or you might decide to kick a Field Goal, but you will for sure not punt.
But where is the best area to do this?
After a while you will get a feeling for the distance your punter can punt.
30 yards, 40 yards or even more.
Let’s assume 40 yards.
He will punt 7 yards from the line of scrimmage, so if you don't want a touchback, everything closer to the goalline than a line of scrimmage at the opponents 33 would be dumb.
That would also be a 50 yard FG try.
Is you kicker good enough for that?
And right here you have that tiny area for special rules.
4th and something on the 34 yard line? Punt?
No, chances are good it will result in a touchback.
No, the Kicker is not good enough.
So go for it?
Your decision.
But it looks like it would make sense here.
Just to give you a feeling, a good punter can really punt the ball in average 40+ yards, the not so good ones do punt shorter. A good Kicker CAN make a 56+ yard FG, but can also miss and if you try this often, the good ones will sink those more often than the bad ones.
Of cause such rules do also have to consider leading and being behind situation.
It doesn't make sense to kick a FG while losing by 4+ points in the last minute. Better try for a TD and get the tie or the win.
That brings up another extreme situation for special teams.
This is based on the special time management of RZA.
It happens not often that a team makes a TD with one play left in the game or the half, if they are mid field or even longer away from the goalline.
So if you are near enough the opponents goal line and there are just a few seconds left in the half, kick a FG. Even 60+ yard tries can score, sometimes.
But avoid a too long try, because if you miss, the opponent will get the ball 7 yards behind the line of scrimmage and then they might try a FG on their own, if enough time is left.
60 yards would mean a try from the 43 yard line as line of scrimmage and the opponent would get the ball mid field.
That sounds OK, since he would have to make a 67 yard FG then.
But if you try a 67 yarder on your own, it's not unlikely the opponent will sink that 60 yarder later.
So think about it.
Still a rule for such a situation is a good thing and with 30 seconds to go this sounds like a good starting point.
But you will have to accept the risk of a potential return TD or a one-play-score after the return. Doesn't happen often, but CAN happen.
Same for the end of the game, but with a lot more options.
This is the most important phase of the game and you should have rules for that.
Leading and in scoring distance with still some time on the clock on fourth down?
Kick a FG and let the opponent crawl over the whole field again, now even more points behind.
Or you decide to go for it, in that situation, aiming for the first down. Your decision, but you better have a rule for it, and in case for going for it, you might better run instead of passing and potential interceptions.
Having a tie and a few seconds to go?
Kick a FG and win the game!
Being just 1 to 3 points behind and near enough to kick a FG with time is running out?
Kick a FG for the win or the tie.
Being behind even more?
Get desperate and go for the long distance, you have nothing to lose.
Think about it and make a rule for that.
Sometimes a few lines are enough.
Remember that there are not many plays inside a minute game time to play, so if time is running low and it gets crucial, like 30 seconds left, and you have the chance to win a game by FG, make it, you don't get extra bonus points for scoring a TD with 7 seconds to go.
In one game those 7 seconds are left to score the TD, in the next not and you lose because of a missing rule.
Of cause you could also decide to go for it in those situations and you might even outplay your opponents and surprise them.
Just make sure you did think about it and did cover the situation. The real implemented play is your decision of cause.
Worst case is, that there is not such a rule and the engine picks either a generic rules or even worse, gets creative.

Over the top
If you really like to sink a lot of time into that playbook thing, do a review of your game and analyse every play, every game.
Did some player make something you didn't like to see or didn't want to see?
Set up a rule for the next game to avoid that, regardless of offense of defense.

You can also try to analyse the opponent’s plays and try to find the rules behind them.
You need to analyse very likely several games (sometimes a lot) and the results are not always clear, still you might get a clue what the opponent has configured in certain situations or how he does set up a playbook in general.
That takes time and energy.
The problem is, the every extra inch you might want to achieve might cost you literately hours of time.
Up to you.

AC Bonus
If you do think about formations and when to use them, don’t forget the ACs.
If you want to use a special formation, look if there is an alternative and s e l e c t that formation which gives you the best bonus.
If you don’t have an AC for SFs, but for CBs, better use a CB heavy formation than a SF heavy formation.
If you have an AC for RBs but not for FBs, better use a RB formation than a FB formation.
Of cause it might make sense to NOT use those formations, to confuse or to have the best fitting formations which is at that time not the formation with the most AC support, but overall it’s clear that you will get better results, if the individual players are supported the most, instead of being not supported at all.

Special Formations
It’s common mem that on offense the 2 shotgun formations are the ultimate passing formations.
Not because the WRs are hotter, just because the FB playing as extra blocker does have a very high percentage rate of picking up the blitz, while on other formations the QB gets decked more often.
It’s not 100% of the blitzes, but a quite high rate.
That is of cause a gigantic plus compared to other formations, since you can almost never get a big minus yardage play that way.
On the other hand is then the run out of those formations quite successful, since many do expect pass out of them.
That’s the reason you see a lot of shotgun plays from Elite level teams and level 1 contenders.

The pure pass defending formations are 3-1-7, Dime 4DL MLB 4CB 2SF and the 3-3-5, but usually you don’t see them very often, since they are very weak against the run and you never know what’s happening.
So they are usually just used for the sure-to-defend-pass situations like 3rd and a mile or special scouted plays.

The balanced defences are the formations 3-4-4, 4-4-3 and 4-3-4, which can defend against both pass and rush. The managers do like some or all of them with favouring one or two over the rest.
Some see the 3-4-4 better against pass, some see it as the outside run stopper. Some see the 4-4-3 better against the run than the 4-3-4, some the opposite. Keep in mind that the formations do live and die with your players, so if your LB squad is better than your defensive backfield, better use 4 LB than 4 DBs as general advice.
The 4 LB sets are often used as blitzing formations, since then still 3 LB are left in the mix.

The pure run defences are 5-3-3, 5-2 and the goalline. Here is all valid as for the pure passing formations, just with runs. If used in a right way, they will stop the run quite good, but in passing situations they can be burned.
Only the 5-3-3 has some limited qualities on stopping the pass and you can even survive an extensive usage of it against pass, if you have the right players.
The 5-2 has no OLB, so you might get burned on outside runs, but it is normally good against inside run. Short passes are not good defended, but long ones can be stopped quite successfully. Put not many long ones are thrown, so think about it.
The goalline has basically no real backfield but works good in short yardage situation and you are sure the team will run or the remaining field is not very deep.
All 3 formations are prone to big play TDs, since once a tackle is broken on a pass play, usually there are not many players left to make the tackle, especially if you did bring an additional blitzer.

That’s it for now. This topic is far from exhausted, but for now I’m.
If you have suggestion and topics on playbooks I should add, let me know, we can discuss the issues and see what can be used.
I hope this helps you to create a better playbook or at least a good first one.

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Last edited on 2016-07-05 06:13:27 by jack6

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