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The pleasures of youth

2009-05-05 12:30:00

Being the manager of a youth academy has not been an easy task. Following your players’ development has taken a lot of effort, finding a friendly has not been a walk in the park and your coach has sometimes suffered from both Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. Well, these days are now over.

Today we launch a lot of bonuses for the youth academies, which will make your manager life more pleasurable. You will be able to reveal skills, let the friendly pool arrange your friendlies, change team and arena name - and walkovers will just be a memory of the past. Included is also a player generation update for the “old” youth system (and for the academies), and even more.

Let me first mention that this update will make your manager life a lot more pleasurable and the youth experience a whole lot better, but it still doesn't mean that it will be an easy task without any mystery left. Running an academy will still be a challenge, but it will be a more exciting and fun challenge. Now, let's talk about the actual changes!

Training events changes and revealing of skills
The biggest news in this update is that your youth players' skills can be revealed. Skill reveals are based on what your trainer says to you in his report. Before your trainer starts reeling off his report he will mention that he has some special news about some players, for you managers who like the excitement to reveal the skills yourself.

As mentioned, revealing skills is based on what your trainer (and your scout) says to you in his report. We have also improved the report as such, and together with the revealing of skills your trainer will provide you better feedback, not repeat himself and make more sense as a whole. These are the details of the changes:

- Whenever your scout mentions that a player is at a certain level (or can reach a certain level), the skill will be revealed and visible on the player page. From now on you can also trust your scout to 100% when he mentions a skill (previously he could be slightly incorrect).

- Just as today your trainer will report the skill of one player in the team for every training type you choose. What's new is that the current level for these skills (for the reported players) will be revealed and visible on the player page. Your coach will always give you a report about a player who hasn't had his skill revealed yet, his Alzheimer days are over.

- When your trainer reports that a player has a period of time left until he will reach his potential in a certain skill, the player's potential and current skill will be revealed.

- Your trainer will only report skill-ups for revealed skills, if the skill isn't revealed he will not report any skill-ups. Your trainer will on the other hand report every skill-up for revealed skills and you'll naturally also be able to see the new and correct level on the player page.

- When your trainer reports that a player will not respond to a certain type of training anymore (he's reached his potential in that skill), his current and potential skill will be revealed. Moreover, the skill bar will turn yellow at the same time indicating that the player is fully trained in that skill. As your trainer's Alzheimer days are over, he will not repeat himself anymore.

- If both current skill and potential are already revealed before the player has reached his maximum in that skill, the bar will also turn yellow when he reaches his max (and even if the coach doesn't report this).

- Your trainer will not arrange birthday parties for the boys anymore, and thus he will not report any more cake eating.

Included in this update are also some bug fixes: aggressiveness reports now work as they should as well as the presentational error when players get one year older.

About past reports
This above system has been running in the background for a little more than two weeks already, so all of you already have a few players/skills to reveal as a small surprise. Older trainer/scout reports than that are however not affected by this update, so what the coach said back then will not lead to any revealed skills.

Training event changes, phase two
We would also like to give you a heads-up about that there being a phase two for training event changes. The next phase is far from being as huge as this update, but it will include some changes in the information your trainer gives you. The reason for waiting a bit with this second phase is to see the effects of this update first (as it's quite a change itself), before deciding the exact details of the second phase. This second phase will however be released within a month or so.

Youth friendly pool
Finding a youth friendly hasn't exactly been a walk in the park until now, but with the friendly pool it will become such a one. The youth friendly pool is very similar to the friendly pool for senior teams, you add your team to the pool from your youth challenge page and after this your team will be automatically matched against another team. Supporters can specify league or regions and also browse the pool for available teams, just as for the senior pool.

What is different in the youth pool is that you'll get a time interval when the match can be played when adding your team to the pool. The pool will then automatically choose the first possible time when you and your matched opponent can play the friendly (and make sure you both of you have time to travel there and don't have a league match the same day). However, if you’re a Supporter you can browse the pool for available teams and that way you can choose the time. The pool will choose the exact minute that hour though, it's simply too few who choose another time than .00 and .30 for the system to cope with.

Change team and arena name
Your team and arena name don't have to be carved in stone, you can now change names if you want to. Team name can only be changed in between youth seasons, but arena name can be changed anytime. You change arena name from the arena page (Your club -> Arena). The fee for changing arena and team name is half the normal fee, but your fans will not care if you do.

Scouting history
Many record labels made the mistake to dismiss The Beatles in the early 60s, something they later on regretted "pretty much" to say the least. Now you'll also be able to see the teams that dismissed your youth superstar down before you gave him an offer, if any. The scouting history is found in the player's memorable moments.

The fantastic boys from the neighbourhood
Whenever your opponent fails to field a valid line-up, you'll find some neighbourhood boys magically showing up ready to face your boys for an improvised game. This means your boys will always get to play (as long as you can field a valid lineup yourself of course) and you will not be "punished" for your opponent's shortcomings.

Player generation tweaks
In this update we have also made some small player generation tweaks for both the youth academy and when you recruit a player from the outside to your senior team. These tweaks are done to make the players from the different systems equal, but also to better reflect what's expected from today's keepers.

For academy players, the set pieces maximum will from now on be excellent. This max is also valid for academy keepers, which will also get a better set pieces skill on average, a higher defence starting skill and a slightly lower keeper starting skill.

The set pieces max will be excellent also in the old youth system. Keepers' set pieces and defending skill will also be similar to the academy keepers (no change for keeper skill). Moreover, keepers' age in the old youth system will be between 17-19 from now on.

That's all the pleasures for now. As mentioned there is also a (much smaller) second phase regarding training information coming up. We also see a need to make the youth league administration a bit better in the future, but unfortunately that's a rather huge task and it will have to wait for another time. But right now I suggest that you take a look on your youth players, there should be some skills for you to reveal. A precious and pleasurable moment.

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