Top Eleven Football Manager
Top Eleven Football Manager is an online football manager simulation developed by Nordeus, for use through Facebook and other social networking sites. It was originally launched in May 2010, and has recently been released for iPhone and Android. Played by football fans from across the globe, there are currently approximately 3.9 million players.
To get started, you first have to choose your language, team name and manager name. The choice is entirely yours but – inspired by my location – I went with Camden Town FC. You then get put into a league of 14 teams, with teams playing each other twice. The game will then try to place your Facebook friends in the same group which can add another football topic to the pub conversations you already have.
The season only lasts 28 days and at the end of the each season, the top four teams qualify for the Champions League for the following season. The top seven are promoted to the next level where they play against teams at their level, while sixth and seventh place ply their trade in Europe. Usually you are able to watch the game. However, the kick-off times can vary from 9am to 10pm at night. With it being a social on-line game, you can keep tabs on your Facebook friends and even arrange friendly matches to see who has the better team.
Due to the game not having any officially licensed teams or players, you are assigned a roster of imaginary players and are given complete control of the club from top to bottom, assigning tactics, training schedules, signing and selling players etc. You are even given control of sponsorship and the building of your stadium and surrounding areas i.e. the car park and training ground.
As with any football team, money is a key factor for any club wanting to make real progress. While money does play a part in this game, the main emphasis is on the in game tokens. Most actions take up some money and/or a token. You are allocated five tokens at the start and can gain more through your sponsorship. You can buy tokens or try winning some free ones so keep an eye out for the ads surrounding the game screen.
The transfer system is simple, with success being achieved by outbidding the other teams. However, you use a token per bid, so you have to time your bidding and use your tokens wisely. There is a two hour deadline for each player with other players in your league and other leagues fighting for the rights to the player.
The big plus point for this game compared to other management games is the stadium feature. You are given a large plot of land and a basic stadium, and you can oversee a complete overhaul of the stadia and surrounding areas; adding stands, training pitches, food and drink kiosks (which bring more income into the club and allow your supports to have a more enjoyable experience). But be warned, it can take up to 16 days (weeks in the game) for a building to be constructed.
Top Eleven Football Manager is a very simple but highly addictive online version of Football Manager which one can play on the sly whilst at work. With less detail and small additions like creating your own stadium, link up with your friends and colleagues to play friendly games, it adds a very important social aspect to football games which has only started to feature in recent years. The game is extremely accessible; with Nordeus’ use of Flash making it quick, simple and easy to pick up. The social aspect adds a bit more to the game allowing people of all abilities to come and play with their friends and with the game being available on iPhone and Android you can access your team on the go.
The game is not on par with the Football Manager series, meaning it is unlikely you’ll spend all night playing, waiting for that all important cup final where you go and put on your suit. But it does its job by filling in that void that you have during the day where you cannot access the all important save file at home.