Football Manager Handheld™ 2011 (US and Japan) Review

By , on December 22, 2010

Football Manager Handheld™ 2011 (US and Japan)
  • Publisher: SEGA
  • Genre: Entertainment
  • Released: 16 Dec, 2010
  • Size: 246.5 MB
  • Price: $5.99
Download on the AppStore
4 out of 5


  • Deep (deep) management features with the latest Football roster.
  • Tutorial and 'aide' system helps to ease in new players.
  • Multiple countries can be managed in one 'playthrough'.


  • Few worthwhile updates from 2010 besides the transfers.
  • Limited audience appeal; assumes some sport familiarity.


It's unlikely that fans of Football Manager are currently without the latest installment, however having this game available to you on the go is a dangerous recipe for social disasters; pick up this title at your peril (NB. Who needs friends when your team is on the top of the League!).

  • Full Review
  • App Store Info

There have been very few games I have actively sought not to play, but I'm almost loathe to admit that Football Manager by SEGA is one of them. I should perhaps caveat that this isn't because I dislike these intensely statistic based games; no, I just know how badly enthralled I am by them - once you're down the rabbit hole you can kiss just about everything else you had on your schedule goodbye. 'Handheld(TM) 2011' is the latest installment in the franchise and the second release for the App Store, following close on the heels of the 2010 edition pulled off the App Store earlier this year.

First and foremost, I'm in the enviously comfortable position of not needing to explain this title to the people it's aimed towards - such a prestigious title is already engrained so deeply in to their consciousness. However, for those not yet inducted in to management titles, the overall goal is simple - lead your chosen team to victory by fine-tuning your line-up, their training and trading players between other teams.

It's a supremely hands-on title that caters to the hardcore fans of the sport far more than the casual crowd, but the menu driven system is easy enough to learn and much of the game's depth can be left un-plumbed while you learn the basics. Unfortunately, 2011 doesn't build up much from the previous title and those who picked up 2010 could be forgiven for not seeing much of a change outside of the updated transfers. The ability to manage multiple teams across different countries adds longevity to the games you're on, but it doesn't add to the depth or give players better management features. Furthermore with the previous title being pulled early after its release, players aren't even provided with the option of choosing between the 2010 and 2011 editions.

For a game based almost solely on statistics, feedback and automatically processed simulations, it's disturbing just how much time can be consumed as you slowly come to learn the ins-and-outs of your team's performance. Football Manager Handheld(TM) 2011 is the premier bastion of football management on the App Store and while casual gamers may be put off by the complexity, it holds up well no matter how deep you delve.


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