2012-11-04

Howto ... create a proper playbook?

Hello all,

since we have the new engine now, the first gameday has shown quite impressive how important it is to understand how gamesettings and playbook influence the gameplay of your team...

The first thing you will have to do is setting up the gamesettings. A lot of information can be found in the manual and the forum, so we won't go deeper here, but just to mention a few things:

1. Don't forget to store kind of a default set. This safes you from playing "nonsense" when forgetting to create gamesettings for a certain game. Check the Coaches hints, there you'll find warnings too.

2. Don't use special settings like "Don't substitute" rules unless you are sure what you are doing. Wrong settings on this one can be the trigger for losing high.

3. Don't forget to activate the right playbook both for offense and defense. This is important to activate the playbook settings.

This Video lesson will give you further hints...

Now for the playbooks...there are offense and defense playbooks, and for both there are basic rulesets available here and there is a video lesson available too, you could follow here.

Now some basic "rules" for creating a playbook:

1. Be careful with "any"-rules...they cover "any" situation, this might cause trouble when punting from the opponents 1 yard line on 1st and goal. Basically you could say the more "any"s are in the rule, the more you should move it the bottom of the playbook.

2. Playbook rules overwrite settings made in the gamesettings...you can say in the gamesettings "never go for the new 1st down on 4th down attempts"...if you put a rule in your playbook saying "go on 4th by rush no matter how many yards", you players will go for the run!

3. Be sure you are using the Playbook-checker, could be found top right in the playbook. This smart tool will check for you if a rule becomes active or not. Needless to say: every single bug report we got in the past for not working playbooks was solved by using the playbook-checker, and in 99% of all bug reports it was the managers fault

4. In your offense playbook you will have to try to be a unique as possible. It is a good idea to have different rules per quarter, and more sophisticated playbooks force the team to pass and rush out of a certain formation to confuse the defense. Try to fool your opponents D, but don't overcook it.

5. The same is valid for your defense playbook. Some offenses try to fool you by playing 3 quarters medium pass out of the shotgun, but in the 4th quarter they go for the rush through the middle. If you have only one rule for the whole game to cover the shotgun attack, you will not take any advantage out of the "learning Defense brain". This "brain" is counting per formation and playbook rule, how offense formations are used, and is trying to find the right answer by guessing for rush or pass. You could "reset" this brain by having 4 rules, 1 per quarter, to react on shotgun - instead of having one shotgun answer all game long. Notice: the basic playbooks you got when taking over your team, or from the manual, or not covering this fact.

There are tons of hints left for the playbook...we will write a followup on this howto during the next few weeks, and reveal some more of them. Meanwhile you should play with your already existing knowledge, and turn your basic playbooks into much smarter ones....but please: do it step by step. Change small things, check them in the playbook-checker and of course on the field, in friendly games...if you fail, fix the playbook, and if you had success, think about the next small change.

We wish you good luck.

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