Superclub is the Awesome-Looking Board Game Version of Football Manager

SuperClub takes the Football Manager approach to building and improving a soccer team. The board game is available on Kickstarter for three more weeks.

Do you think you have what it takes to take a low-level soccer club and make them into a championship-contending side? If you answered yes to that question, I would usually recommend the latest Football Manager game from Sports Interactive or whichever game you prefer between FIFA and PES. However, a new board game has appeared on Kickstarter that promises to do just that. It’s from a brand new publisher, so check your expectations a little bit, but the game looks quite good. Give the team’s short trailer a quick watch below.

There’s this relatively unknown basketball board game called BasketBoss. It’s incredibly simple, but one of my favorite games because all you’re doing is drafting and purchasing players to try and make the basketball team you can. It’s not hard to learn and works with almost any group (though I haven’t tried with a group full of basketball haters). Simply said, it has been a great addition to my personal collection. Superclub takes a very similar idea to creating a soccer team and then blows it out to an amazing level.

At first glance, the game seems appealing to anyone. The minimal art style catches your eye and everything just looks super clean. And really, I think most soccer fans could easily get into this, but the SuperClub team has layered in a ton of depth.

The game starts with a draft, giving each player 15 random players that form their starting squad. The characters are rated on a six-star system, though at the beginning only one person has that elusive sixth star. To get anyone else there, you’ll need to groom a youngster into the world-beater he was meant to be.

From there, the game plays out over several rounds, with each round having two phases: the season and the off-season. During the season, you’re playing your matches and trying to advance up the league table. Matches are basically you stacking your team up against another player, with a bit of randomization in the form of dice rolls thrown in. It’s a neat system that gives even the bottom table teams a chance at upsetting a top dog.

The off-season is when you’ll improve your squad. You’ll need to pay out salaries, assign stars to youngsters who’ve been in training, and do much more during this phase. On paper, it seems like they’ve gone a long way in trying to make this feel as much like a real-life off-season as possible.

There are a few ways to win. You can either win three league cups in a row to enter the SuperCup final. There you’ll play a randomly drawn team from a deck of cards and hope to beat them. If no one is able to claim complete dominance over your league, the first player to 100 points is the winner.

Now, I have to say again this is a first-time publisher in the board game space. That, of course, does not mean the game will be bad. In fact, given how innovative SuperClub appears to be, I’d say it’s great that they’re new. However, I must say that some first-time publishers have had trouble fulfilling Kickstarter orders in the past. Do I think that happens here? Probably not, but if you’re interested in backing the Kickstarter, keep that in mind.

All of that said, this might be the most excited I’ve been by a game since Gloomhaven. I don’t know if SuperClub will eclipse Issac Childres’ masterpiece as my top game of all time. That said, I cannot wait to find out. The way the team has so neatly translated all the intricacies of running a soccer club to the analog world is incredible. Plus, it’s easy to see them expanding the game in the future or taking the formula to other sports. If there is a SuperClub: Basketball Kickstarter next year, I will not be surprised.

If SuperClub looks like something you might be interested in, check out their Kickstarter. It has about three weeks remaining and has already blown by its funding goal. For full disclosure, I am not picking it up on Kickstarter myself. Instead, I’ll be hoping it comes to retail later on. I’ve simple backed too many games this year. However, if you have any interest in soccer or great board games, SuperClub is going to be a great addition to your collection.

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Ricky Frech

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