Product Type: Eidos PC games
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Championship Manager 2010 (PC)
Member Name: rleigh
Championship Manager 2010 (PC)
Date: 12/06/11, updated on 12/06/11 (22 review reads)
Advantages: Fun game, cheap price.
Disadvantages: Not as good as Football Manager, bugs should have been removed before release.
Having not played a Championship Manager title since Sports Interactive split with Eidos back in 2003 and Sports Interactive went on to form the Football Manager series; going into playing Championship Manager 2010 I really wasn't sure what to expect. Tempted into purchasing the title due to its £2.51 price tag, the game was always likely to represent fantastic value for money, quite how the game would play however was to me an absolute mystery.
Starting out a season with Oxford City in the Southern Premier League, what instantly struck me about the game was how bad it made football look at this level. Players were unable to remain on their feet, falling over at every kick of the ball, with a passing style that was bizarre to say the very least. The football at this level just didn't look right, starting up a new game and playing as Manchester United in the Premier League soon sorted things out however, with the 3D match action then looking a lot more natural and true.
My fun in football management titles tends to come in taking on small teams, attempting to get them promoted as far up the footballing system as possible. With the ugly style of lower level play in Championship Manager 2010, this seemed to take much of the fun out of managing a non-league football team, and this I feel is something that could affect quite a lot of people's overall enjoyment of the game. This is by no means a ruining factor of the game, it's certainly something that has affected the way that I play the game however, and it may well have an impact on your Championship Manager 2010 gaming experience also.
Managing a team from the top-flight, Championship Manager 2010 is a good, solid football management title, and one that is without doubt great fun to play. The screen set-up took a little getting used to at first having played with the Football Manager system for so many years, the controls feel quite natural after a while though, and definitely aren't particularly difficult to deal with.
The graphics of the 3D match action in Championship Manager 2010 is pretty impressive, and the crowd sound also works well within the game. When in the middle of the match it is easy to get your team to change tempo, take a more attacking/defensive approach when necessary, and the tactics also can quickly be altered at any point in the match.
Bugs in the System
Where the Championship Manager 2010 team has seemingly failed in getting this game released is in ironing out the creases; taking out the small bugs and making the game as problem free as possible. One problem I have personally come across in the game is the matter of the match day team talk loop. Having been sacked by Manchester United and moved across to Middlesbrough; I was into my third/fourth friendly with the club, was winning 2-0 at half-time, and found myself stuck in the half-time team-talk, unable to get into the second-half of the match. This is a problem that has been officially identified by the Championship Manager website staff; this is a problem that really should have been removed before the game was released however, and it's quite frustrating to say the least when you do get stuck in a team-talk halfway through a match. When this happens it is not possible to save the game and exit, and you just have to bite the bullet and close the game down. What made this issue ten times worse for me was that I hadn't saved the game for several in-game months, and therefore lost several hours of gameplay as a result of the bug. Admittedly I should have been saving the game more often and then this wouldn't have been so much of a problem, alas I was not though, and several hours went to waste.
In terms of longevity, I found that I played this game for about a month or so before getting bored, which although seems pretty reasonable when you consider that a lot of games fail to retain my interest for more than a week; when you consider that Football Manager keeps me entertained all year round then we have a clear winner in what's the best football management game. To put this in footballing terms, I'd say that Football Manager is the Manchester United of football management video games, a title winning game that's an absolute force to be reckoned with, whilst Championship Manager is more of a Derby County, languishing in the Championship.
Championship Manager will have difficulty ever overtaking Football Manager in terms of popularity, and given that there was no PC release of Championship Manager for the 2010-11 season, merely a Championship Manager 2011 iPhone game, I fear that Eidos may have already thrown in the towel and accepted the fact that Football Manager will always reign supreme as the number one football management sim. It's a shame if Eidos has indeed stopped competing with Sports Interactive for the PC/MAC crowd, if Championship Manager 2010 is the last game in the series as a PC title however, then at least Eidos went out on a high with a game that they can most definitely be proud of (even if it's not a rival beater).
Championship Manager 2010 is quite an impressive football management sim, and whilst it's not without its problems; Championship Manager 2010 is still a game that is well worth playing. It was definitely worth the £2.51 that I personally paid for the game, and if you can find the game for under £10 (current Amazon price at the time of writing this is £7.80) then I'd definitely recommend investing in this one. Admittedly, Championship Manager 2010 is not as good a game as Football Manager 2010 and certainly not as good as Football Manager 2011, as a Football Manager alternative though it's a rather nice title to have in your collection and I personally am glad that I own this game.
The choose your own price promotion at the time of Championship Manager 2010's release was definitely a masterstroke in gaining back the fans that perhaps deserted Championship Manager after the Eidos/Sports Interactive split; in not releasing a PC/MAC title for the 2010-11 season I definitely feel that Eidos missed out on a trick though, as had a game been released then I'm sure there are plenty of people that would have checked it out.
Championship Manager is definitely a game that I'd recommend for fans of football management games, don't expect it to be a Football Manager beater though, just expect it to offer something a little different.
Summary: A pretty solid football management sim.