Top Eleven is a football managing game, as you probably know already, as it differentiates itself from the competition by various in-game features and by the fact that it’s got Jose Mourinho as its public face.
This year marked the 8th anniversary of the game and since its release, it has had several updates and changes. Top Eleven is one of the most popular simulation mobile games and Nordeus plans on keeping things that way for a long, long time.
The game was developed by Nordeus and released on May 9th, 2010, with their initial intention of making it a Facebook game. For those of you who don’t know, Nordeus is a Serbian mobile game developer, stationed in Belgrade, and Top Eleven is their debut game.
They’ve published it as a free-to-play football management simulation, and in 2013 it has already reached the top grossing charts in 68 countries on AppStore and 23 countries on Android.
Nordeus was quite a young firm, having been founded only a couple of months earlier, but by experienced former Microsoft employees, all from the University of Belgrade Faculty of Electrical Engineering. Today, the company has more than a hundred employees.
Since they were initially targeting Facebook, Top Eleven transitioned to mobile devices a year later, in 2011, and in 2013, when it reached top grossing charts, the company hired Jose Mourinho as the game’s promoter, to appear in all marketing campaigns and even participate in the games’ tutorial phase.
Nordeus also acquired licensing agreements for official kits and emblems from Liverpool, Real Madrid C.F., Arsenal F.C., Juventus F.C., Borussia Dortmund, and many others, so they are all available for the player, in-game.
But, good marketing stunts and fancy licenses are not what kept this game in the top grossing category. It is the constant upgrading and updating, with the developers adding things to make the game better and to answer the needs of their gamers.
Also, Top Eleven has various features no other football managing simulation has.
Matches and Preparation
Top Eleven is essentially a single player game, but it does feature multiplayer interaction. In fact, you can play matches with other player’s teams, which are scheduled in real-world time and date. You can oversee the match via the basic 2D engine, or you can view the results later.
When you are not playing official games, your team needs to prepare, and so it is your job to determine the right balance between preparedness and exhaustion. Here, you are given a detailed choice for the daily training drills, as you can decide to let your players rest up a bit with the relaxed “piggy in the middle” tempo, up to intensive sprint training.
As a coach, you level up as you trainin your team, and with levels you learn different drills and training methods you can utilize in your job. Naturally, as in other manager games, you can also trade players and participate in a real-time bidding war against other managers, for a particular player.
Top Eleven has its own soft currency in-game, which you use in your job, and every bid you make will cost you a single Token (currency), meaning that you can’t just spam your bids all over, which I think is a nice preemptive solution. It also gives the game a real-life flavor, for a player you bid on can easily be snatched right in front of your nose by a manager with deeper pockets.
But, this is not a pay-to-win game, despite how it may seem at first glance. Even if you lose a match, you will have a positive side to it, and you will still level up as a coach.
Top Eleven in 2018
The game saw some fancy changes this year, as some of the biggest ones include the squad layout, meaning the pitch is now horizontal, with the reserve players and the staff underneath the field. If you want to move them, you just hold and drag and the position will be highlighted when you hover over it.
This new layout is divided into three sections: lineup, formation, and tactics. You switch between them by swiping left or right in the squad layout section. There are several other options added, like the ‘Matchup’ option, which will show you weak spots in your team.
Several other improvements to managing your team’s tactics are added, as well as some convenient options for playing leagues.
Top Eleven continues to remain one of the most played games precisely because Nordeus is constantly adding new things, improving on others, and changing what needs to be changed. The game has all the features other football management simulation mobile games have, with some unique ones. It seems like it has a long and successful future to look forward to.