Rule changes and ‘clarification’ on chips, transfers + captaincy
The game makers of FIFA World Cup Fantasy have revised, or attempted to clarify, some of the rules in the last 24 hours.
It’s been a bit of a shambolic week, in all honesty, with dozens upon dozens of players – many of them prominent – not priced up until around three days before the tournament starts.
Confusion has reigned around the “how to play” section as well, with the rules for captaincy, transfers and chips somewhat ambiguous.
We have Let’s Talk FPL’s Andy to thank for much of that below, as it was his correspondence with (we think!) one of the masterminds behind the game that led to the attempted clarification – not that the waters aren’t still muddy in some areas.
Here we will try to give you the last of what we know.
First, a bit of jargon.
Match day does not mean a calendar day, but rather a round in which all active teams play once. So, for example, Matchday 1 has all 32 teams playing their first group stage matches.
Now we come to locked/unlocked players.
The players you have selected for your team will either appear as “locked” or “unlocked” once a matchday has started:
|Unlocked players||Players are shown as unlocked when the team they play for has not yet played in the current matchday.|
|Locked players||Players are shown as locked when the match of the team they play for has started in the current matchday. These are marked with a padlock, indicating their locked status.|
So, to give an example, all players representing Qatar and Ecuador will appear unlocked when Sunday’s curtain raiser is underway.
There has also been a fine-tuning of the transfer rules:
|The tournament stage||Transfer Assignment|
|Before the tournament||Unlimited|
|Match day 1||2 transfers|
|Match day 2||2 transfers|
|Match day 3||2 transfers|
|Before the start of the 16th round||Unlimited|
|16th round||4 transfers|
|Quarter finals||5 transfers|
|Final/3. place playoffs||6 transfers|
This is not like Sky, where you can tactically use your allocated transfers to get points from more than 11 players on a matchday.
In the FIFA game, you will only get points from 11 players, although substitutions and transfers at least allow you to change who the 11 players are.
Speaking of transfers here, let’s shed some light on that.
Everyone gets unlimited transfers before the tournament starts on Sunday, as we already knew.
But when Matchday 1 starts, you’ll have two more free transfers to call on.
SCENARIO 1: Transfer an unlocked player to another unlocked player
This transfer will be processed immediately and your new player will start scoring points in the current matchday. You will not receive points this matchday for the player you have transferred.
This is very useful if you see a team sheet and the player you are supporting is on the bench or not involved at all.
For example, say you owned Phil Foden ($8.5 million), but he has only been named as a replacement for England’s clash with Iran. As long as you make the move before kick-off, you can transfer him with one of your two allocated moves and bring in a starting teammate, for example Raheem Sterling ($8.5 million) or Bukayo Saka ($8.0 million), or a player from a completely different (and not yet played) nation.
SCENARIO 2: A transfer involving a locked player
If you do this, the transfer will only become active until the next match day. The locked player you sold will also keep the points they have earned on this match day.
As an example, say it’s Monday night in the first game and Foden has already played and earned you two points.
Any move for an unlocked player, say Angel Di Maria ($8.5 million) as a Foden replacement would come out of your Matchday 1 allocation, but Di Maria wouldn’t start scoring points for your team until Matchday 2.
Transfers cannot be reset once confirmed, but you can roll over one unused free transfer per matchday.
Confused? You should be and it’s going to get worse…
This is where the rules get a little hazy again.
The aforementioned Andy raised this over the Wildcard hack with one of the supposed game makers.
Essentially, the idea is that by playing your wildcard before match day 2, you effectively get two free match pages for match days 2 and 3.
This will also be the case for the quarter-finals and semi-finals if you activated the Wildcard before the last eight.
What is required is fairly quick action from us Fantasy managers.
If you is When playing Wildcard in Matchday 2, the message above suggests that you can overhaul your entire locked squad (you can do this when, say, Portugal v Uruguay is underway on Monday 28 November), and bring in players you want for Matchday 3 .
The fact that we’re finding this out from a video producer unrelated to FIFA and the screenshot of a “DM” exchange (without confirming the contact’s identity) worries us, as there could be more miscommunication or the goalposts could change again.
But if true, it’s a real strategy changer.
Finally, some light on the captaincy.
Each matchday, the player you choose as captain will receive double points. Only one player can score double points as your captain per match day.
However, you have the option to change captains after the match day has started according to the following rules:
Switch between unlocked players
You can switch captains an unlimited number of times between unlocked players (ie between two players who have both not played in the current matchday).
Change captain after he is locked
You have one opportunity each match day to change the captain after he has locked (eg after his team has played the match).
However, in this situation you can only change your captain to a player who has not yet played in the match day (ie an unlocked player).
Once you have confirmed this change, you will not be able to change captains again during the current match day.
Let’s give another example. Say it’s Monday night and you used to be the captain Harry Kane ($11.0m), but he responded in England’s clash with Iran. The rules state that you can take another bite of the cherry with the wristband and support another player who has not yet played (e.g. Lionel Messi (£10.5 million)).
It’s actually the UCL Fantasy captaincy rules rather than the Sky rules.
KEY PASS BONUS STILL AVAILABLE
You may have noticed that the key pass bonus disappeared from the scoring matrix yesterday – this has now been reinstated and midfielders will actually still get a bonus point for every two key passes made.