Reviewed: FM Genie Scout

8 01 2007

The FM Genie Scout is a powerful tool that delves deep into your Football Manager game to give you more facts and details about the players, staff and teams than ever before. While it certainly is a fantastic tool, many consider the use of it to be cheating. With a new version of the software recently released, Blog FM took a look at the tool to see just what all the fuss is about.

The Scout first gained notoriety under the guise of Michael Nygreen. His CM Scout tool set the benchmark for the current FM Genie Scout, now created by Eugene Tarabanovskyi. (Nygreen’s CM – and later FM – Scout is still available online (http://www.nygreen.net/program.php?id=3) for anyone who wishes to look back in time.)

Upon loading the FM Genie Scout you have a few basic options – the main being to load a saved game. The Scout uses a previous same games data, rather than the database, and for this reason results tend to differ. As each game loads slightly differently to others, players who are given high potential ability ratings in one game may end up with lower ratings in another.

Take, for example, a small experiment I conducted. On two ‘new’ games (that is, saved after loading a new game without any matches being played) the results were quite different. Calling these Game A and Game B, a selection of the results are shown below:-

Player with the higher ‘Potential Ability’ rating:

Game A: Ronaldinho
Game B: Hatem Ben Arfa

Sale Value of Antonio Cassano:

Game A: £50m
Game B: £60m

While it is obviously a plus point that the Scout uses the actual game file to take it’s data from, these findings to show that one mans wonderkid may end up being another mans donkey.

The Scout’s enormous potential is what makes the tool so debateable. Hidden statistics, such as the Potential Ability stat, and information like the Sale Value, are easily found – useful items of knowledge that you wouldn’t find from playing the game. But it is for this very reason that many consider the tool ‘cheating’. Of course, in technical terms, yes it is. Jose Mourinho does not have such a tool that can somehow predict the potential of every player in the world. But to me, using the Scout should be a personal decision. If you are completely against using it, then that’s fine – but I’m sure many people get a great deal of enjoyment out of using it for that extra edge. Afterall, how many of us have turned to a game guide when looking for that extra coin or searched for tips on how to beat that extra tough baddie we’ve struggled against so much? Reading how to do something in the future, and reading who will be good (with the right training) in the future isn’t that much different really, is it?

The whole debate regarding cheating in Football Manager could continue forever, and this being a review of the software, I shall leave that subject behind for now. The best features of the search tools available in the Scout really help you to find that special player. On top of ability ratings, you can search for players who have release clauses, browse those who are deemed to be ‘not wanted’ by a club, and view just how much money a club will demand for a player. This last area is particularly useful in discovering how much money you will have to spend to get the player you need – and most of the time the clubs tend to stick to the figure provided. So if you want to sign the Barca youngster Lionel Messi, you’ll need to fork out around £83m.

When loading a game that is a few months old, you will notice that even now information is given, and it is all up to date. It can be especially useful for a struggling manager to open up the Scout when the January transfer window opens to search for a good yet cheap player to join.

Picking your own team can be a little easier using the Scout. You can quickly find your players ability ratings, and discover which position suits them best. It even comes with an FM-like mini review of each player, which opens in a new window and reveals the player they are most like and who they could become similar to in the future, which is always handy. Did you know, for instance, that Joshua Vermooten, the Leeds United 18 year old reserve, has the potential to be as good as Rio Ferdinand?

For what it can bring to the casual gamer, the FM Genie Scout is a great tool. It holds information that many gamers – especially those who want the ‘quick win’ will desire. All of those players who trawl the internet looking for that best player could download this and save themselves plenty of time. Of course, signing a player with a huge potential rating is not the end of the your involvement – he has to then be nurtured, and remain relatively injury free – something that often blights the talent of many a youngster. Whether you consider it cheating or not, the FM Genie Scout is certainly a powerful tool, and one that can radically change the course of a game should you wish.

FM GENIE SCOUT
Type: Tool
Price: Free
Available: http://www.fmscout.com/

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8 01 2007
The Football Manager Community » FM Community Digest 08/01/2007

[…] FM Genie Scout Reviewed […]

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