Wednesday, 29 October 2014

First impressions about FM 2015 Beta

Blog post 854. First one written from Mac OS :)

Hello dear readers,

I want to arrange discussion of the newest FM 2015 Beta and its numerous features. There are many pros and cons. Let’s try to find out what’s good and bad now in the pre-release version of Football Manager 2015.

Mac OS issues vs Windows 8 issues

Till the latest FM update, it worked very slow with its internal database on my Mac OS. Player profile of other team can be opening for 10-20 seconds. Luckily, this stupid performance bug was fixed and the game become more or less playable. Though I notice it can crash from time to time which can depress anybody quite quickly.

2048 x 1280 resolution is the highest one when I can see smoothly processed animation with High graphics enabled. Unluckily, I have to turn on 150% zoom that eats quite much available space easily. Fonts are little bit blurred due to that but still usable. I wish I could use top Retina resolution playing FM 2015 on my Macbook Pro (Late 2013 release). Hope they will put some optimization efforts on that.

At the same time more stable Windows version performs worse during 3D match. There are no lags when I set Medium graphics settings. However, High graphics doesn't go that smooth as on Mac OS, even with the latest version of NVidia drivers...

My first sight

Search panel

First new feature striking one's eye is the new search panel at the top. That's what I do like. It allows to quickly search everything you want. Smooth, responsive and fast. Looks like I will use it very often, it’s really convenient as for me.

New tactics screen

Having read many positive and negative thoughts about new Tactics screen, I was kind of very interested to analyze it in-depth. As a result I would like to join those who have been praising the screen. It seems SI Games UI developers worked really hard to receive this kind of UI.

Interesting that they didn't change so much. However, the change set encloses a process of tactics creation and team/player instructions selection which is definitely one of core parts in Football Manager.

So what we have in the new FM...

Step 1. Team shape selection.

New comfortable UI control is opened in combo box. We can see our team shape options at the left side and description - I like that it holds pretty good explanations - at the right side. Hovering over team shape option changes description respectively. The same UI concept is adapted in other combo boxes like Team Instructions, Mentality, Player Roles.

Step 2. Player role selection.

Nearly the same as in the step 1. Though here we have a bonus: it's pleasant to see icon showing how much position and role is suitable for a player. 

For instance, let's take a look at the new Raumdeuter role.

Step 3. Player selection

Nice feature, you can click on player name and change selection onto another player suitable for a current position and role. However, I feel it should be improved because we need to have an opportunity to change columns. Personally I would add some columns here. It would be absolutely perfect if I could add different columns for different positions!

Step 4. Individual instructions

Click on the player t-shirts over the green pitch brings us into panel with individual instructions. It's much better and well thought out one in my humble opinion. I can hardly add something and just enjoy how good it is :)

Inbox. Headlines

There are should be some serious cons in Football Manager, I thought. It was easy to find this one.

Inbox Headlines can just give negative emotions. Too bright, white fonts are almost unreadable, looks like a group of parrots. They should make the colors much darker to improve user experience of this screen.

Your opinion is welcomed!

Sure I want to discuss more than above-mentioned features. But let's do it in the next blog post. I think it's already enough for the start, and I would like to know your opinion regarding these new features.

Stay tuned to the updates. More to come soon!

Excited to blog for you
Vitaliy Mokosiy

Author: Vitaliy

Playing Football Manager since 1996. Blogging about it since 2007.