Michael 84

Football Manager Stole My Life – The Book

Tech Blog
Sunday, 28th April, 2013

football-manager-book

Good morning, it is Sunday, a day to relax, chill, and some may read a good book. If you are a man, played Championship Manager as a kid, then I recommend this, Football Manager Stole My Life.

I got it at the back end of last year but forgot to write about it. It comes at you at a number of angles; Interviews, stories and insider stuff. The interviews are great, with Sports Interactive (the makers), researchers, fans, and even the wonder-kid players from the game, where are they now and what happened in their ‘real life’ career. The insider stuff is also brilliant, with images and diagrams, and the general story of where it all came from and where it all went. There are the stories from fans of their own seasons in the game, and how the game affected their life. I found the stories on other people’s games quite dull, and actually skipped a few, I wish this had of been replaced with more insider stuff, pics or tales from the earlier Championship Manager years. Reading about someone playing a later version of the game was not enjoyable for me.

I hate to read! :mrgreen: Well actually that is not true, I hate to read fiction, I find it boring, the words on the page just don’t do enough for me. Fiction was pretty much all we were allowed to read at school, I remember reading James And The Giant Peach…I say read, it was more like staring at the pages for a while, turning them every so often so people thought I was actually reading. I think I “read” it in all of year 6,7 and 8 at school, haha 😉 I blame Championship Manager for that, while other kids were reading my mind was in my Championship Manager team :mrgreen: I can however say, I did read this book! 😀

 It really did steal my life…Well, Championship Manager as it was known back then. I remember getting CM ’93 for my Amiga and being hooked, it was so amazing 😀 We all loved football, we loved to play Sensible Soccer and it was the game to play. CM came along and it was our chance to manage a team instead of playing, it was so addictive. Then we got the “End Of Season” update, and loved it even more. This was probably the version we played the most. We used to fight over signing Mark Collis and Ferrah Orosco, fictional players who played for Cambridge in the game but were in fact credited at the start as working on the game. They were a forward and defender respectively, and were “super players” i.e. very, very good :p

I remember sitting in English class in year 6, probably around 94/95 just talking about Championship Manager, who to sign, who was good, how were people’s games going etc. it’s pretty much all we talked about in every lesson.

Italian football was huge around that time, so what happened next? CM Italia! We spent so long playing, it seems strange now looking back at those games where there were only one playable country. We were managing the big team of course, Juventus, AC Milan, Inter, the days of Del Piero, Baggio, and Bergkamp to mention a few. Of course I remember us signing players from abroad, like Shearer, something we could never seem to do on CM 93 or 94 update.

Then there was CM2, aaah CM2. I still had an Amiga, and remember reading in the back of so many computer magazines it was available to buy! I used to go to Electronics Boutique (aka Game) a lot and ask “When is CM2 out for the Amiga?” and they never knew, I finally showed them it in a mag and they claimed that magazines often publish games to sell which they don’t actually have. It did apparently come out for the Amiga (according to Wikipedia).

I then got a PC! I went into Electronics Boutique and I saw CM2 for £9.99! What a bargain 😀 I had to get it, I did, I was so excited to tell my friend and we played CM once again! CM2 was so detailed in comparison, with better tactics and just better everything!

Then there was CM 96-97, and what a game it was.  So that was English, Italian and Spanish for us 🙂 I don’t recall us ever even bothering with the other leagues, maybe once or twice just to try. I did so many seasons as Barcelona; De La Peña, Ronaldo, Figo, Luis Enrique, Vitor Baia…What a team! 😉

The biggest game of the CM2 series was to come….On 31st October 1997 it was a day I will always remember. It’s Friday, after school, and I go home and tell my friend it’s out, CM 97-98 and I have money to get it! So we jumped on the bus, went to the town and bought it! It was probably the first game I ever bought on release day, since I was 13 at the time we did not care too much about things like that, in fact usually did not even know release dates for games. It was a momentous day, and of course when you do that you have to go home and play it until early in the morning…In fact the whole weekend! 😀 No homework got done that weekend that is for sure 😉

I also remember going one morning on release day again to get another game, probably in 1999, so CM 99-00 from the CM3 era. I remember standing outside Game with a couple of other guys, yes we were all there to buy Championship Manager. I remember that day because in the afternoon we had a mock GCSE exam! After I bought the game and went home I don’t think I revised 😉

Since then I have of course bought it each and every year, but I don’t think I will replicate the excitement of the glory days of CM1 and CM2, but it is fun to look back.

The CM1 days were probably the most fun, in terms of how much we played and what we did, the games with  friends sitting in a bedroom, playing for an entire day or night or usually both. Carrying my Amiga to my friends because he did not have one, also carrying a dot-matrix printer so we could print out our stuff at the end of each season we did, we were hardocre! 😀

I loved Championship Manager, a HUGE part of my childhood, thanks for the memories 🙂


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Michael Adams

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Michael Adams is the founder and editor of Michael 84, blogger and T-shirt designer from Newcastle, UK. Sharing men's fashion tips, style advice and lifestyle information for all guys.

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