Championship Manager: Season 99/00
|a game by||Sports Interactive Limited|
|User Rating:||8.0/10 - 1 vote|
|Rate this game:|
If a week in football is a long time, then a year in football management games is a while. That's almost how long it's been since Championship Manager 3 was released, shattering sales records and once more redefining the benchmark for football management simulation. We're probably preaching to the converted here though, as anyone who has ever been sucked into the wonderful and frightening world ot Champ Manager will be only too aware ot the havoc it can wreak. It is chronically addictive, and relationships, sleep patterns, and ultimately sanity all take a back seat to the CM God. Heavy users wear a thousand-yard stare and speak openly about events in the game as if normal people were interested, traditionally to be greeted by non-believers with a weary chorus of "It's not real!".
For those living in the twilight world of the Champ Man addict, it's real enough though, and many who once mocked soon find themselves worshipping at the altar. Opening that blue box is a genuine commitment, and one not to be taken lightly.
Hey Goo, What's New?
But you knew all that. Hardcore fans will only be interested to learn what enhancements have been made in this seasonal update. So read these words.
Sixteen concurrent leagues will be playable - now including the American MLS - with competitions, awards, transfers and disciplinary rules updated to 1 October 1999, There's a quicker match engine with a greater variety of descriptive text, dragging out the tension further with debated penalties and so forth. The media now get involved, sparking transfer rumours, agent approaches and dressing room unrest and players can even decide to leave the club in the lurch, or 'Do a Carbone' as it's known. Errant players can now be fined for a variety of reasons, and will respond accordingly.
Furthermore, players can now advise you of their reasons for accepting and rejecting transfer and contract offers. The scouting system has been overhauled, and scouts can now be assigned to individual players, clubs or tournaments, as well as ordered to find youth talent. Referees come under much greater scrutiny, with full statistical analysis of performances in different leagues, including red and yellow card count. Board interaction has been vastly improved upon, and requests can be made for additional funding, improvements to the youth and training facilities, or even expansion of the stadium, the first time the series has ever dabbled in such things. Don't worry though, the emphasis is still firmly on football.
Old Red Eyes Is Back
But that's not even the half of it, and space prevents us from going into the minutiae of the numerous improvements. Suffice to say it's a beautiful thing, and one that will have you bleary-eyed and uncommunicative for months to come. They're certainly releasing it at the right time, as there are few better ways of enduring the ravages of another British Winter than shutting yourself in a darkened room and creating a footballing empire.
In the same way that you can only really support one team, you can only really play one management game, and you might as well have the best. The irony is that for all the money other companies spend on securing official licences, Championship Manager s universally perceived as (he official management game. Buying a different one would only be cheating yourself. It's been said before, but after trying other management games, going back to Champ Manager is a return to calmness and sanity.