World Cup 2018: Creative England’s Football Games

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The World Cup is upon us – the quadrennial football tournament between international teams is considered a highlight in the footballing world, with eyes from across the world tilted towards Russia for the next few weeks. Some will win, some will lose, some were born to sing the blues.

It comes as no surprise to fans that virtual football has a strong presence at the World Cup, with Fifa 2018 topping the best-selling physical games chart this year.

Whether it is the rapid emergence of E-sports, or the highly anticipated social posts of new FIFA stat-boards for your favourite player, it is safe to say that football fans will be firmly glued to screens for the next fortnight, whether that be watching the coverage in Russia, or embodying Neymar on their consoles.

Virtual Football games such as Fifa & PES dare players to dream of a day that their team could be an ensemble of the world’s elite, and what football fan wouldn’t want a starting forward line of Messi, Ronaldo & Mohammed Salah? Prolonged transfer deals and FFP regulations will always curb our imagination, however in a virtual world where you create your own rules, who’s to say in 2 years time, gamers won’t be playing with a mixed sex squad? The momentum gathering around the FA Women’s Super League is something that should be taken very seriously, with a record attendance of 45,423 turning up to cheer on Fran Kirby at Wembley in the Super League Final. It’s highly plausible in the near future to walk into your local supermarket and see “FA Women’s Super League” stacked on the shelves… and selling out!

In 2017, the number of frequent eSports viewers and enthusiasts amounted to 143 million. This number is projected to reach 250 million in 2021. Besides these games there are many others, from Football Manager to Rise of the Kickmen. As part of GamesLab Leeds we have funded two football games, so I got in touch with the developers to tell us more.

Advance Soccer, Gentlemen of Science

Advance Soccer is a turn-based 5-a-side football game for phones and tablets.

It features cross-platform multiplayer, allowing you to challenge friends to leisurely paced friendly matches. You can also enter into competitive games through the matchmaking system, in which turns have to be submitted before the clock runs out! The more you play (and the more you win!), the more fans you gain. More fans translates to more money to spend on better players for your team from the player market.

Players take it in turns to choose the action of their players on the pitch, with options to pass, shoot, intercept and tackle. The players also have a small amount of autonomous behaviour, allowing them to move short distances to intercept the ball or tackle opponent players. You can influence this behaviour by instructing players to man-mark.

Advance Soccer requires an internet connection to play, and can be downloaded completely free right now, on the  App Store Google Play and on  Amazon.

90 Minute Fever, Isokron

90 Minute Fever is an accessible yet deep skill-based football management MMO. Create and customise your own club, sign real players, compete against a community of highly active managers in a persistent online world and gradually build your own legacy!

True MMO

A vibrant and thriving online community with all users in a single, persistent online world. Frequent and meaningful interaction between users, and a robust user-driven economy.

Live Matches Against Real People

Play matches using our live interactive match simulator. Make substitutions and tactical changes during the game and watch how these affect the match. 90MF will put you head to head in a battle of wits against other users to see who has superior tactical nous!

Create Your Own Football Club

Fully customise your team’s appearance and stand out from the crowd. Design a logo and strip for your team using the 90MF Club Creation Kit. Build upon an initial squad of players to make you competitive and create the tactics that get the most out of them.

Real Players from all of Football History

90MF’s innovative Reborn Legends system brings real players from all era’s of football history into the present. Now YOU can finally settle the age old argument of who are the greatest players of all-time!

Skill-Based Gameplay

Enjoy a fair, competitive and realistic game play experience with no need to worry about having to ‘pay-to-win’ in order to compete. Achieving success in 90MF requires skill and dedication, not a bottomless wallet!

90 Minute Fever is available on PC on the  Steam Store and now includes the option to play National Teams so you can play your own version of the World Cup.

Please keep an eye out on the blog for other games supported via the GamesLab Leeds programme.

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