Do you want to have a life? Maybe socialize with other human beings and have meaningful relationships? If so, Football Manager 2013 is not for you.
The latest edition of sports' most expansive and in-depth video game carries on a long tradition of Football Manager -- it is incredibly addictive. The amount of features, details and nuance in the game make it impossible to put down and leave you telling yourself, "one more game", but it so rarely is just one more game. That is especially true this year thanks to several new features that make Football Manager 2013 the most addictive yet.
As is always the case, the game starts with you picking a team. That is also the easiest part. After that, you go headfirst into the world of football. As always, you have to pick your players, formations and tactics in excruciating (and engrossing) detail, but there are some new toys this year.
One of the most notable additions is the new assistant manager at your disposal. He gives you tips throughout the match and, in general, allows you to be a much more nuanced tactician. The staff isn't limited to just an assistant, though, as a Director of Football can now be appointed to handle negotiations and other coaches can be assigned certain tasks, but that is hardly the only thing overhauled this year.
Whereas training had remained the same for years, this year FM has rebuilt the entire feature. It is now more vital than ever and each part of it must be carefully considered. Which players need specific training in which areas? You better know and put him through the paces. Who are you playing this weekend and how do you prepare for how you are going to attack them? Have it down pat or pay the price on Saturday.
When Saturday does come around, you get to experience the biggest upgrade from last year's game. The in-game match engine is miles better and provides you with much more information so you can beter manage your team. There are also options for quick subs and changes for easier changes and the 3D presentation is miles better than the old version, which had been unchanged for years.
The game is not perfect, as the new media interactions and tone of voice options could use some work, but overall, the game is phenomenal. That is the old, in-depth game modes because there are a couple new ones, too.
Just in case you do have a life and would like to keep it, FM tossed in classic mode this year. It's a simpler, less complex version of the game that will allow you to still do all the basics, but without every little detail. Some of the media interaction is omitted, as are the team talks and you can simulate the matches. The result is a game that is still very good, but for you crazy folks, may allow you to practice your social skills upon occasion.
Challenge mode also makes its debut and allows for you to torture yourself. The tasks are amazingly difficult, like trying to save an awful team from relegation in the middle of the season when they are already 15 points back. And that's the easy part. Worst of all? These challenges are as addictive as the full game.
So do you have a significant other? Don't plan on having one for long if you get Football Manager 2013. It's like the rest of the Football Managers -- painfully addicting. But a ton of fun. Nerd up!