Words by Esteban Ramirez
Mobile-phone games are considered by many as little apps on your phone you use while waiting for a bus or sitting on the toilet. In either case, they are not regarded as a serious gaming experience as that of a console or PC game would.
Before discovering Score! Match, I would have probably agreed. It is difficult to devote lots of your free time to a relatively simple game with limited mechanics and storylines like most mobile-phone games have. However, that all changed with this game.
Score! Match is a football game, so to those uninterested in sports games this is probably not your scene.
However, for those that are, I am guessing that throughout your gaming career you have encountered either FIFA or Football Manager, both of which being the most popular console/PC football game respectively.
As brilliant and engrossing as these games are, the same common complaints are heard year after year.
Football Manager, the ultimate manager simulator, is an extremely complex game requiring hours upon hours of one’s time attending to every possible aspect of a real football manager’s job.
FIFA, on the other hand, is very arcade-y, providing users with very limited scope for tactical management. And this is where Score! Match finds its market niche.
It is surprising enough on its own that a mobile-phone game could compete with a console/PC game.
As mentioned before, the limited game mechanics and gameplay depth often hinders these games’ potential. At first glance, Score! Match is no exception.
Exclusively online, the user works their way up the leagues, gaining and upgrading player cards along the way.
Each match is first to 2 goals, with a draw after 2 minutes leading to a penalty shootout (which is always thrilling).
The gameplay mechanics, although impressive for a mobile-phone game, is still very basic compared to FIFA.
In the match, users control the passing and shooting of their player when in attack, and when defending they only select which player to defend with. The user has no control over his players’ movement, when they pass/shoot, or when his players tackle or go for headers.
However, this is why the game is so brilliant.
Each player on a user’s team is a different ‘type’ (e.g., poacher, commander, intruder, explorer, etc.) Each type of player has unique attributes and on-field behaviour.
All of this means that, although you can control where players kick the ball, their behaviour on the pitch is down to them.
As you get to know your players’ behaviour and abilities, their position on the pitch and what formation you choose becomes crucial. This, along with your own passing/shooting decisions, becomes the deciding factor for success.
Score! Match thus gives you limited control of your players on the pitch, whilst forcing you to make extremely important tactical decisions.
A simpler Football Manager with a much larger tactical sphere than FIFA, all in your pocket and with the thrill of online and knockout matches, this game deservedly earns a 5-star rating.