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Understanding the tactics
This article will enlight the matter of which extent the managers can affect the results of the matches they play at Xpert Eleven, with the tactical settings they have access to today. The article is based on my answers in a thread started by Nobego that questioned the importance of tactical preparations. This is a question that keeps getting asked from several managers now and then. So we thought it would be a good idea to publish an official article about the subject which probably will be of interest for most managers at Xpert Eleven.

The tactics should obviously be of importance
Of course it should be of importance to prepare the tactics and the statements from managers that the tactics are pure luck etc is something we take seriously. Nevertheless it´s easy to get an idea of that you have set the perfect tactics if you only look at the most obvious choices as Off.Strategy, Def.Strategy, Playmaker and Defence against. If you hit those perfect it´s easy to think that you made everything right.
However, these choices represents maybe 10-15% out of the tactical space. Because of this it could be that the match wasn't played perfectly despite the most obvious choices were set perfectly. You could ask yourself the question if you should be guaranteed a victory if you have set have the perfect tactical settings for 10-15% out of the whole tactical space. I'll leave that question unanswered.

The tactics have significant importance
Is it really a fact that the importance of tactics isn´t big enough? From my point of view I don´t think that is the case. If you´re a good manager who succeeds in mastering the tactical space and also creates a decent development of your team, you will be successful. This is something that Nobego himself already proven by his success in both Xpert Champions League and his Xpert league. If Nobego only been half as good as manager, he would never had been champion of his Xpert league 8 times out of 10 possible.
I would also like to say that I´m pleased that a well-qualified and skilled manager as Nobego obviously doesn´t master the game and it´s tactical settings entirely. This means that no matter how good you are at Xpert Eleven, you can always get better.

Unexpected losses can always occure in individual matches
There is always a slight probability that you will lose regardless of predictions and how good your tactics were set before the game. There are never ever any guarantees to win. But when looking at an entire season it is extremely rare (if it ever happens) that the team which becomes the champion is a complete surprise for everyone.

More matches means greater challenge
I can agree that it´s tough for a team to play as many matches a week as Nobego´s team does (3 matches per week). But is it really wrong that more matches affects a team negatively? Is that not how it works in real life? It might be a good idea for a successful team with a lot of matches every week to consider increasing his team's squad to be able to handle the situation.

The cup needs to be more attractive
It might very well be that we will have to make changes to make the cup more attractive. But you could also see the same problem in real life. Many of the cup tournaments played aren't very attractive (i.e Carling Cup in England) and the question is in what way we should make the cup more attractive. That is however a completely different subject and we'll leave that for now.

There's more to tactics than one might think
The tactical choices you make on the tactics page only represents 25-40% of the whole tactical space. The remaining part of the tactical space includes for example the line-up which contains a larger number of tactical choices as team composition, special qualities, average age, teamwork etc.

Today it´s rather 40% than 25% that the tactical settings you make on the tactics page represents out of the tactical space in total. But it´s hardly bigger and it could vary between games. Note that these percentages I mention is far from a fact. It´s just my own estimations. The tactical space includes everything that can affect the players and the game itself and that the manager have influence over in any way.

Each individual tactical choice has less influence
You might have noticed a difference that every tactical choice used to have a greater impact. This may be a correct observation as the specific individual tactical setting alone has lost its impact while Xpert Eleven has developed. As we have added more tactical choices that can affect the games, the tactical space has grown gradually. But the specific tactical choices alone has remained unchanged. This means that as the tactical space has grown bigger a specific tactical choice's part of the whole tactical space now is smaller than it used to be.

The tactics is now more important than ever
In other words, it would be correct to say that the tactical possibilites to influence the matches are greater today than it has ever been. It would also be correct to say that each specific tactical choice alone has less influence on the matches than it used to have.

The importance of the most obvious tactical choices
The tactical choices of Off.Strategy, Def.Strategy, Playmaker and Tightly marked are the choices many managers look at when he/she tries to see if he/she succeeded with the tactics. But if you only look at these most obvious tactical settings, then you will often feel that the tactical settings are of less importance.

The specific tactical choices will be reviewed.
As some certain tactical settings are more obvious to managers, we might have to think about increasing the importance of these settings and by that increase their tactical part of the tactical space. This would probably increase the faith of the game engine.

Still, we need to maintain a good balance between the influence of the tactical settings in relation to the strength of the teams. Also, we have to keep some room for unexpected results to keep the excitements.

The human effect on the number of matches
There is also another thing I would like to bring attention to that affects your trust in the game engine. This is the number of matches you play each week. The more teams a manager controls, the more matches the manager plays each week, the higher probability there is that you will lose a match unfairly. Unfair losses are much easier to remember than an unfair victory. To play a lot of matches every week makes a big difference, compared to play only one match a week like many other similar sites, especially to the game engine which is exposed for a lot of reviewing.

If you encounter one unfair loss every week you won't forget the unfair loss you had before you encounter another one. But the victories you have along the way doesn't stick to your memory as hard as the losses. Even if you get a unfair victory you won't remember that match at all as much as you will remember an unfair defeat. From my part of view I would like to challenge the doubtful by claiming that unfair losses represents a less part of the matches played at Xpert Eleven than most other manager games online.

But as said earlier you are surely experiencing unfair losses more often at Xpert Eleven just because you are playing a lot more matches here compared to other sites you may have tried. And this may cause you to think that the game engine is more random than it really is.

Summary
You have never had as much influence on your matches at Xpert Eleven as manager as you have today. It's a fact that the tactical space has grown gradually and its influence on the matches has grown for every new feature that has been introduce. But as the "old" tactical settings has remained the same these old individual tactics settings each has lost some of its influence as they represents a smaller part of the tactical space as whole. We will review the tactical space and restore the importance of some of the more obvious tactical settings if needed. These changes will be done gradually and it isn't likely you will notice anything on the short term but you might do it in the long term.

This article is basically directly translated from Swedish so it might be hard to follow. And it may create a lot of questions about stuff you might think you don't know but should know. However there are no questions around this that doesn't have its answer in the rules in one way or the other. We will never reveal the most inner secrets of how the game engine work as the game of Xpert Eleven is supposed to be hard to master. Easy to play but hard to master.

Regards
Iwe
The X11 Crew
Head developer

2007-10-20 19:46 21823 Views iwe

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