Jumpers for Goal Posts 4

Jumpers for Goalposts 4 – The well-refined pinnacle of the widely-adored football RPG series

Who’d be a Footballer?

Footballers have it tough, don’t they? Having to find a suitable bank account or two to in which to put all of that money earned through strenuous running around on a well-maintained pitch, and all the while keeping extremely fit and living the multi-millionaire lifestyle on a daily basis. It sounds like an horrific profession to be at the top of, doesn’t it? Wouldn’t you much rather be at the bottom working your way up through the ranks and seeing how it all began? Jumpers for Goalposts gives us that opportunity, dropping us into an immersive football simulation that is as much RPG as it is a football management title. Money, cars, houses, fame, and stardom await you, as does the possibility of committing career suicide if you make the wrong decisions and don’t strike the correct balance between work and play. In Jumpers for Goalposts, the only difference between success and failure is the effort you put in.

Career Prospects

At its very core, Jumpers for Goalposts 4 is very much the same title as it has always been in that it involves you taking control of a prospective football start that is just starting out and putting him through training in order to get him signed to a club. After entering into a contract with your starter club, you must concentrate on winning matches, training, and proper balance of your personalise life with your professional one in order to become an all-round success. Money is at the heart of the whole thing, allowing you  to purchase  cars, houses, and other items in order to show the paparazzi and eventually your girlfriend of your monetary worth (which apparently reflects on your worth as a person, since you can only meet girls if they know you have a nice car or a big house). The game is a true balancing act that mixes bursts of real-time, on-pitch skills action with watching the league table, and watching every aspect of your personal life.

Reshuffle

Jumpers for Goalpoasts 4 has undergone a considerable reshuffling compared to the relatively incremental changes between its predecessors. The main change comes through the structure of your career, particularly after being signed. You begin in the usual way by being required to win points in each of the 8 skills areas, after which you are offered a contract based on your skill points. Once signed, you begin the main journey of the game, the structure of which has received a bit of a makeover. Long-term fans will notice the abolishing of the old open-diary structure of the previous titles in favour of working your way through the league table.

The amount of training you can do is now limited, with the emphasis now being on match play. Of course, the striking of an equilibrium between your on and off-pitch conduct is still a significant factor in the game, requiring the hiring of an agent, who can now perform tasks such as raise your profile a little, and also renegotiate your contract. The level of detail is quite remarkable here since you can hire a variety of agents, each with their own extortionate fees and differing skills of negotiation as well as having differing numbers of contacts that will benefit you. The match structure has also been changed, and now you can choose to play a full or half season, depending on how deep you want to venture into the world of simulated football careers.

Improvements All Round

The look of the game is a significant improvement on the previous titles, with the series having grown from fairly basic flash design to some noticeably polished and smooth visuals. The title screen is the first indication of this visual improvement, as well as the more colourful and better-illustrated nature of the on-pitch play. Even the menus look sleek and professional, with the ‘buy stuff’ screen now having illustrations of the cars, properties and miscellaneous items you are buying, and customisation of your player’s appearance is now also an option.

Jumpers for Goalposts 4 from Mousebreakers is a vast improvement on the game’s predecessors, containing significant improvements to its structure, content, and general appearance. The insane difficulty of mastering the skills is still an annoying issue, but this gripe can be alleviated by simply becoming accustomed to the feel of the mouse-controlled on-pitch action. For new fans, I recommend taking a look at the original just to see how far the game has come since 2007; for existing fans, it will be appreciation all around for improvements across the board.

80/100