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Season 15: Special Players
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Allan (Memphis) - Sunday 09-18-05 11:59
Hi guys,

I was perusing some old emails and ran across this one from Paul Cockayne. This discusses the potential for "special" players to be added. Some of these look like alot of fun though I'm not sure how we'd integrate them. I'm not advocating that we do this or not do this. I'm presenting it to see if there's anything here that we could integrate with added fun and not too much complexity. Here's the text from Paul (back in July, 2001)...please review and comment...and add other ideas:

> -----Original Message-----
> From: []
> Sent: Monday, July 09, 2001 6:04 PM
> To:
> Subject: Special Players / Coaches
> Allan,
> Apologies for the delay on this, but I've been a bit busy.  I 
> realise that I don't have an e-version of Alan Parr's rules, but 
> I'll contact him and see if he's willing to send some.  I'd sort 
> of assumed that you and he knew each other, since you have an 
> Alan Parr cup, but maybe he'd be interested in making contact 
> directly anyway.
> Here's a collection of special players, from Alan's game and from 
> other similar games.  As I said before, some would probably be 
> difficult to program, but that's your call.....
> Age -1 players (pre-qualified apprentices who cannot play or be 
> coached this season but are age 0 next season)
> Players who are cheaper to coach (Alan's game has players who can 
> be coached for 0.5 CP per level).  Also players who are cheap to 
> level 10, cost 1 CP to level 20, then 1.5 CP above that.  Many 
> permutations.
> "Riotous Livers" who are auctioned at high levels but suffer 
> higher SL losses than normal through ageing
> "Clean Livers" suffer less losses than normal through aging
> Players who can be coached more (or less) than 10 levels more season.
> Players who can do something else if they don't play in a 
> session.  e.g. gain 1 level free, can do some special coaching 
> (see coaches below).
> Players with special playing characteristics....
> ..DM - midfielder who adds half his levels to defence
> ..AM - midfielder who adds half his levels to attack
> ..LK - link man, plays in MF, also adds his levels to either 
> attack or defence (manager's choice), costs double to coach
> ..IMF - Influencial midfielder.  Adds his level to attack and 
> midfield and defence.  Costs treble to coach. 
> Plays at double levels at home (or away)
> "Diver" - 50% chance of conning the ref into giving a penalty
> Nullifies opponents special characteristic players
> "Hard Man" can be nominated to chop an opponent with a chance of 
> injuring them, but an increased chance of being booked or sent off
> And thinking of MSWL, you could have players who have poor 
> stamina (suffer more EL than usual) or good stamina (suffer 
> less), forwards who play better with wingers, or without....the 
> possibilities are endless.
> And then there are coaches...Alan has a coach auction once a 
> season on one season contracts; no club is allowed more than one 
> coach...examples...
> Apprentices qualify at a higher level than normal (cannot be sold 
> at age 0)
> Can coach players more than 10 SL in the season
> Cheaper coaching more apprentices.  (More TPs, more CPs)
> Aggressive play carries less chance of bookings.  Or raises 
> player's levels more than normal
> Adds more points to home advantage
> Allows players to use home advantage when away or neutral or both
> Older players play at 3 levels higher than normal
> Reduces ageing on three selected players
> etc. etc.....
> I know that Alan has played around a lot with combinations of 
> some of the above, and even he has at times misjudged the play 
> balance, allowing imaginitive managers to create "monster" 
> players.  (Combine a clean liver with a coach who affects 
> ageing...).  But he tends then to allow the managers to gain a 
> short term advantage as a reward for ingenuity, but then will 
> change rules so that they do not gain a long term advantage.  
> Everyone seems happy with this, and outthinking Alan seems to be 
> as much fun for some people as the game itself.
> Hope this is of interest, and apologies for all the typos but I 
> can't face proofreading.  Will contact Alan shortly and mention you.....
> All the best,
> Paul Cockayne
Kyle (New England) - Sunday 09-18-05 13:43
While some of these ideas are interesting, I feel like the level of complexity would probably outweigh any practical benefits.
Tim (Zaragoza) - Sunday 09-18-05 17:09
No resulting warm fuzzies here either, in terms of the increased complexity, but the ideas themselves sound fun in an abstract way. :-)
Robin (Ayers Rock) - Sunday 09-18-05 19:28
Sounds toooooo complicated for my little brain. What you could do is have a special player in the Auction with say 3 (hidden) SL. When a manager wins "the special player" in the auction (say a 2/15) he becomes a 2/18. Obviously no one will know who is the special player, even the great Al Sell. How come you all ask? Once the auction is completed Big Al rolls the dice to determine who is the special player. 12 players in auction , roll 1 dice , 3 and under , roll 1 dice to determin player, 4 and over roll 2 dice to determin player. Confused > good :)
Rob (Boston) - Tuesday 09-20-05 13:42
It's similar to what we're looking to implement in PSFA. We're calling it Wildcards. Some players have a higher max PU, others have a lower PU. Some get a SL boost, others may get an EL reduction. This is all under development, but the idea is that the additions are predominately flavorful with only a small portion of the impact being significant.

The general idea is that a random event occurs at the end of a session, or auction, One way to accomplish this is certainly by a roll of the dice, or a random number generator.

Kevin (Kirksville) - Monday 09-26-05 10:54
I'm not in favor of anything like this if it's going to be drastic or have a significant impact on player development. One idea that was thrown out above that isn't too bad is the possibility of a player having a Maximum Points Used being something other than 10. I'd be OK with a player being able to fluctuate on MaxPU from 8-12. This could simulate both the player who everyone had high hopes for that never developed into the star he could have been, as well as the raw prospect that a team gambled on and in two season's time he's an All-Star. The majority of the players would be normal (10 MaxPU) while a few would have the totals shifted higher or lower.
One way to put this into effect would be to settle on a percentage of the league auction pickups to have in each category. I propose a baseline of:
MaxPU of 8 - 5%
MaxPU of 9 - 10%
MaxPU of 10 - 70%
MaxPU of 11 - 10%
MaxPU of 12 - 5%
That would equal out to a 100 point random number generator program. This would also limit potentially devastating feelings of frustration when that good apprentice Winger that everyone is clamoring for ;-) runs the auctions up to record highs and the winner finds out he spent 1400K for a player with MaxPU of 4. While similar to real life in the some professional sports league (like the NFL where a first-round bust on your #1 pick can hurt for seasons to come) I don't like this in a simulated league where all the matches come out due to a large amount of luck anyway.
If it looks like the league is really keen on more drastic number ranges than +/- two points, then we should also add a "Medical Clearance" option. In the "real world," every player gets signed off the waiver wires ONLY if they pass a full medical screen. Prior to that, the signing team has full rights to the player as well as full rights to refuse signing if something comes up. If I buy the player in an auction and find out he's got a MaxPU of 6, then I can refuse to sign him and get a full refund. That player goes back into the next auction batch and every other team will know that there's something wrong with him. This would allow a decent player with limited potential to go for a lower final cost to a team with a lower bank balance and thus help league balance... in theory, of course.
That's my two cents. Anyone who wants their change back is feel to say so.
Tim (Zaragoza) - Tuesday 09-27-05 18:03
I don't like changes that increase the control of the random number generator and decrease the control of the manager. If you can't actually control your team, then what is the point of having a manager? Just let a computer play the whole game and we can all get on with something else. So, "Hey, I just bought a suckie player for a lot of money," would just frustrate me to the point of abandoning the game.
Kevin (Kirksville) - Wednesday 09-28-05 16:49
Anything that will make Tim and BOP II go away... we here at KIN are definitely in favor of! ;-)
Actually, I agree with you, mate. Hence the whole "I can get my money back" point added in. Without that, I fail to see how it could make the game more fun. Even with that it would be questionable, and I guess I ultimately gauge "more fun" as being the point of changing anything with my recreational time anyway.
Allan (Memphis) - Sunday 10-02-05 11:03
Okay I'll consider this thread's general response as "no thanks" for now. This is the kind of thing I would not mind in the future with as much an eye to "keep it simple" as possible.

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