Player stats - meanings

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Player stats - meanings

Postby hitandhope » Sun Jan 01, 2012 8:13 pm

I've been on PM via WinUAE a bit, and it's retriggered some old questions.

The pace and stamina stats are clear enough...but does anyone know what agility does? Higher skills I'd guess but does it mean dribbling ability too?
And does the weight of a player effect how strong on the ball they are?
Is agression just for tackling or does it refer to how high up they play...or how strong on the ball? Or the lot?

And the final one....what does the /10 rating mean or come from? I remember I'd get a team together that'd cruise every season, but the ratings were always rubbish, even when I'd retrained the poor squad players to avoid them dragging the stats down.
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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby Steve Camber » Sun Jan 01, 2012 8:36 pm

I can only speak for KO2, but for what it's worth:

The agility stat scales the shooting, passing and tackling stats.
Player weight has no effect.
Aggression makes a player more likely to slide when not under human control.

No idea on the rating I'm afraid!
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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby alkis21 » Sun Jan 01, 2012 9:14 pm

Also, the higher the agility stat, the more a player improves during the first 5-6 years of his career.

Steve will need to take a look at the code to tell us how exactly the /10 rating is calculated, but you can get a pretty good idea by trying it out yourself. Just retrain all of your players until you have one forward left, and check out your Forwards line stat. Then choose a different forward and keep experimenting with the other lines too. Eventually you'll find out that in order to have a 10/10 line (in Division 1) you'll need players of a good value who average more than 170 in the key stat of that line. The key stat for Attackers, Midfielders and Defenders is Shooting, Passing and Tackling respectively.

These are the stats of my team a few seasons back, all 10/10s:

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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby hitandhope » Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:02 pm

That's a bit clearer, cheers gents
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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby silverferret » Wed Jan 25, 2012 3:31 pm

Used to love playing Player Manager back in the day, and still do these days on WinSTon rather than WinUAE (can’t seem to shake my ST loyalties) but because I enjoy it as a manager game rather than to develop KO2 players.

Three things always really interested me – how good a player could be, and what exactly the different attributes meant (pretty adequately answered here and on the forums generally), and whether there were hidden attributes.

Consequently, discovering this forum and finding out how to use a hex editor was pretty fascinating. A few things I found interesting:

1. Players’ stats aren’t necessarily always in the same order when you’re using the hex editor, on WinSTon anyway – they seem to be different for different positions for example. Certain passages are always together like the standard Height, Weight, Stamina, Resilience combination you usually use to find a player in the hex editors, but others are sometimes in different places.

2. You can go well beyond 200 for both attributes and skills – it seems the limit is 255 which is, I assume, the highest you can go in hex – FF. I created a player with 255 pace, stamina, etc. (value 2015k) and he really was ridiculously quick, etc, but unfortunately the effects either go back to the original value, or down to 200, when there’s a new season.

Having played the game purely as a manager watching AI games, I’ve always been sure there’s a flair stat. Some players, ideally your number 10, are capable of producing something out of nothing while others just plod away down the same old channels – usually just running down the wing and crossing to no-one. I remember being fairly convinced of this ever since loading a PM team into KO2 on my ST back in the 90s – there was a flair stat, but it would always be 0 for imported PM players. This suggested to me that there was either an error transferring them over, or that KO2 assumed a human player would control an imported team, so flair was irrelevant.

Anyway, having watched many thousands of PM games, I’m pretty sure there’s a flair stat. If anyone knows how to work out which one it is in the hex editor, or what it actually means, I’d love to know.

Whether there are other hidden stats, I just don’t know. Some players just seem better at certain things than their stats suggest – stronger, better finishers, quicker developers; and vice-versa – players with great stats sometimes don’t seem to perform, but maybe that’s just the human mind trying to see patterns where there is only randomness. Obviously agility is pretty key to everything, but I always suspected there was more to it than that. For example, does age have any direct impact on game performance, or is it merely an indicator of which direction the other stats are going to go? Some players are definitely "stronger" than others, but if this isn't anything to do with height, weight or aggression, how is it determined?

Another thing that was interesting to read was that someone suggested certain names seem to crop up as superstars more often than not – definitely had more than my fair share of Longhursts, Palmers and Elliots.

As for the bugs, everyone knows the classic “stuck in the post” situation, but no-one seems to have mentioned these ones – perhaps they were only in the ST version?

• The old “it’s your throw-in, no it’s not” one where you (or more often than not the oppo) seemingly get penalized for not taking a throw-in quickly enough and it’s given to the other side.
• The goalies diving well outside their area, and then nonchalantly trotting back into their area with the ball in their arms before clearing it.
• The guy scoring from his own cross.
• A faster player chasing a slower player, but constantly getting “bounced back” when he catches up.
• Dribbling straight through a defender.
• The opposition tactic that involves putting a player so near to a corner that it can’t be taken, so the clock just runs down.

One thing I have never seen is an AI lob goal. Ever.

Oh, and while I’m at it, does anyone have any superb tactics that really work well for AI games? I’ve made various attempts, but I’m sure they’re far from perfect…
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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby alkis21 » Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:10 pm

Hi mate, very impressive first post.

silverferret wrote:1. Players’ stats aren’t necessarily always in the same order when you’re using the hex editor, on WinSTon anyway – they seem to be different for different positions for example. Certain passages are always together like the standard Height, Weight, Stamina, Resilience combination you usually use to find a player in the hex editors, but others are sometimes in different places.


That is correct, I noticed it too.

2. You can go well beyond 200 for both attributes and skills – it seems the limit is 255 which is, I assume, the highest you can go in hex – FF.


Also correct, in fact we had created an all-255 team to use as a better Amiga opponent in Kick Off 2 years ago, before we reverse engineered the game. By the way you do know that you don't have to use a Hex Editor anymore right? We have a proper Editor now. It's meant to be used with an Amiga savedisk file but I think it might work with an ST one too.

Having played the game purely as a manager watching AI games, I’ve always been sure there’s a flair stat. Some players, ideally your number 10, are capable of producing something out of nothing while others just plod away down the same old channels – usually just running down the wing and crossing to no-one. I remember being fairly convinced of this ever since loading a PM team into KO2 on my ST back in the 90s – there was a flair stat, but it would always be 0 for imported PM players. This suggested to me that there was either an error transferring them over, or that KO2 assumed a human player would control an imported team, so flair was irrelevant.


I know what you mean, some players did feel different while playing and yes Flair was always 0 so I doubt that was it. Perhaps it was the way their skills were combined that created their whole 'personality' as players? Only our Kick Off Engineer Steve can answer that. A Hex Editor can't tell us much, we need to take a look at the code.

Some players are definitely "stronger" than others, but if this isn't anything to do with height, weight or aggression, how is it determined?


If Kick Off 2 is any indication, age and height are definitely not used anywhere.

• The old “it’s your throw-in, no it’s not” one where you (or more often than not the oppo) seemingly get penalized for not taking a throw-in quickly enough and it’s given to the other side.
• The goalies diving well outside their area, and then nonchalantly trotting back into their area with the ball in their arms before clearing it.
• The guy scoring from his own cross.
• A faster player chasing a slower player, but constantly getting “bounced back” when he catches up.
• Dribbling straight through a defender.
• The opposition tactic that involves putting a player so near to a corner that it can’t be taken, so the clock just runs down.


All of the above occur in an Amiga game too, but not all of them are bugs! The cross accidental goals are nice. :)

Oh, and while I’m at it, does anyone have any superb tactics that really work well for AI games? I’ve made various attempts, but I’m sure they’re far from perfect…


Can't help you there, I always play my own games.
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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby gdh82 » Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:53 pm

Impressive debut post indeed. I don't have any answers (leave that to the PM experts around here) but still enjoyed reading your observations. Posts like that are very welcome around here! :)

Incidentally, if you haven't read them already, threads on player attribute maths and international player attributes may or may not be relevant.
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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby silverferret » Wed Jan 25, 2012 10:19 pm

Thanks fellas – all very interesting.

Unfortunately, I can only view the PM Editor with envy – because unless I’m being an idiot, it doesn’t seem to recognize WinSTon save disk images. With WinUAE files, I’m curious to know how it’s able to work out which stats are which given that the order is different for different players (sometimes at least) in hex editor. Then again, my programming skills are non-existent, so maybe that’s fairly straightforward. Also interesting that you can make the game more difficult – presumably it just improves the abilities of all the players in the game that aren’t yours?

I wonder if there are any other ways of changing the mechanics slightly to spice things up a bit, or improve the game? I’ve seen the idea mentioned somewhere on these forums of making it so the game generates more 500K+ players which would definitely be worthwhile if you want to avoid hex editing and stick to the half-cheating tactic of constantly re-ending the season to search for good 18-year-olds in the new season. I remember my irritation as a 12-year-old having to constantly swap disks to go back to the saved game in my desperate search for a new superstar – I got so annoyed that I eventually attempted to save the game on the Player Manager disk itself which ruined it. A tearful letter to Anco ensued, and they kindly sent me a new copy of the game. However, not only did the old saved game on the saved game disk not work (despite working fine with KO2) on this new PM, but it also had what I can only assume was an anti-cheating mechanism which meant that if you saved and loaded the game more than a few times, your managerial rating would start plummeting to the point where it was impossible not to avoid the sack even if you were winning every game 10-0.

Anyway, I digress. One thing I’d definitely like the change is the frequency with which players just run down the wing and usually cross straight to the goalie. A good tactic if you’re playing yourself because it’s fairly easy to time and win headers, but generally frustrating if you’re not playing, unless you happen to have a tough centre forward who can win the ball, or you’re playing against a goalie who’s slow or lacks stamina.

Alkis, I think you’re probably right that to an extent that the players’ “personalities” are just a result of their particular combination of skills…and probably our imagination as well. Reading through the forums, and those attribute links gdh provided in particular, it’s clear I’m not the only one to have puzzled over flair and “strength/toughness”. I’m assuming an explanation to a mystery in KO2 is likely to be the same for one in PM, particular given the stats are so similar, and even transferable ( other than flair, if it does exist in PM).

Sometimes I think flair is easily identifiable in the hex editor, but the effects don’t seem to be, to me anyway. I kinda know they’re there, but what are they? And is it even necessarily a good thing – you might not want a 9 who keeps trying clever little passes instead of shooting, or a 10 who’s always trying long-range efforts rather than trying to set up the 9. Or a centre back who keeps dribbling from the back…etc.

Intriguing reading Swifty’s and others’ attempts to work out toughness. Some players definitely have it, and the stats don’t really seem to have much impact, whether it’s height (doesn’t have that much impact on heading either as far as I can tell), weight (no effect on anything apparently), tackling (ability to time the tackle?), resilience (surely resistance to injury), aggression (how often sliding tackles are made?).

It seems that the consensus is that tackling combined with high morale and agility (plus maybe the game situation? Or the teams’ morale?) is what effects whether a player stays on his feet after a clash. But I’ve had plenty of players with high tackling and agility, and everyone’s morale is permanently Great, and the team are always over the moon, and they’re not all necessarily tough.

I like the idea that each team has one “hard man”, but it seems that’s only a theory.

Is it my imagination, or was there also a “work rate” attribute shown next to Morale in one of the screenshots on the box? Wonder if that ever existed in PM itself.

By the way, I assume any attempts to update PM or KO2 never came to fruition?
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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby UltimateBinary » Thu Jan 26, 2012 1:46 am

The PM editor works with both atari and amiga disk images.
http://ultimatebinary.com/pmsavedisktool
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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby silverferret » Thu Jan 26, 2012 7:03 am

Many thanks UB...I was trying to load the save game snapshot that WinSTon uses as opposed to the actual ST saved game - I'm going to have some fun with this!
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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby silverferret » Thu Jan 26, 2012 8:29 am

Ah...the Editor is great, but reloading PM saved game files on WinSTon doesn't seem to work - even without using the editor, after reloading it crashes when you try to play your first game. I think I've heard of this problem before, but never encountered it as I always just use the snapshot save tool on WinSTon. If anyone knows an easy fix for that, I’d love to know it.

Still interesting looking at the stats on the Editor though - particularly for Morale, which I'm guessing must be fairly important if it's used as a modifier for quite a few aspects of match actions (eg winning the ball in a tackle/clash). Most of them seem to be as you'd expect - unhappy players have low figures (5-15), I think I spotted some ok morale players on 36, and players with great morale seem to be either 95 or 100. I think most of the 95s would probably prefer to play in another position but are still pretty happy. But there are a few players, generally unhappy ones, who seem to have way higher morale - spotted a 234 and a 241 I think.

Maybe the thinking was that generally unhappy players are going to play worse than they would if they’re happy, but there’s a certain point at which they become desperate to prove themselves, and play amazingly. I’ll have a little play around on the hex editor and see what happens. My guess is that even if it does work, it’ll probably change in-game anyway (because of the score perhaps – confidence turning into over-confidence for example), and it’ll definitely change back to normal at the end of each match. Presumably that wouldn’t be an issue on KO2 if the stats are fixed, but it would be a right hassle on PM, especially if I can’t edit it using the luxury PM Editor. A bit like the cheat on the CM/FM series where you can turn your players in superhumans by changing all their fitness stats to a certain number – something like 29634. Amusing to do occasionally, but very time consuming and ultimately pointless.
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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby alkis21 » Thu Jan 26, 2012 7:34 pm

silverferret wrote:I got so annoyed that I eventually attempted to save the game on the Player Manager disk itself which ruined it. A tearful letter to Anco ensued, and they kindly sent me a new copy of the game. However, not only did the old saved game on the saved game disk not work (despite working fine with KO2) on this new PM, but it also had what I can only assume was an anti-cheating mechanism which meant that if you saved and loaded the game more than a few times, your managerial rating would start plummeting to the point where it was impossible not to avoid the sack even if you were winning every game 10-0.


I've heard this mentioned before, but it never happened to me! However SPS releases show three different Player Manager versions and your story is a clear indication that at least one of the more recent ones had that feature. I take it you're in England then? Are all your observation really strictly based on watching the games, you never play KO or PM?
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Re: Player stats - meanings

Postby alkis21 » Thu Jan 26, 2012 11:24 pm

silverferret wrote:Is it my imagination, or was there also a “work rate” attribute shown next to Morale in one of the screenshots on the box?


Not on the box, but you are probably thinking about the advertisement below. That wasn't the only thing that was weird about the screenshots depicted there, probably taken in beta stage.

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