It’s a testament to how sports gamers will continue to flock to games such as FIFA, Madden and PES every year even though there rarely is enough of an excuse to justify a full price purchase. Most of us love to see the new bells and whistles, no matter how minute.

As November came around, I knew that Football Manager in all of its iterations was coming soon and I would lose yet another weekend playing the touch version for the iPad. Sports Interactive didn’t release a lot of information (as they are apt to do) for the iPad version but I was hoping that some of the new features for the PC version, touting how streamlined the interface was, would make it into the portable version.

Needless to say, after spending $20 and playing the game for four hours, I had lost 3 of my star players to injury that would keep them benched for months. I had two transfers that just would not go through because the sellers wanted to play hardball with my bid and my team was literally winning and losing games. This was the least of my frustrations however. The more I played, the more I realized that Football Manager Touch 17 did nothing to move the needle forward this year. It’s really sad to say as this game is the best way to play a glorified spreadsheet sports sim on a tablet. Yes, the game is not reliant on flashy graphics or cut-scenes but when the only real addition is a fake social media tab that adds nothing, then it fails to really compel someone to buy the new version.

Let me say that while there is nothing wrong with the game technically speaking, this is essentially the same game from last year with a roster upgrade. The controls are still the same and a bit tighter but on a touch screen it should not be that difficult to maneuver around the menus.

I am still frustrated that many of the player faces are not only missing, but for the third iteration on tablets, gamers cannot mod it so that everything that is missing could be added.

Player interactions, just like everything else in the game, are still exactly the same from last year’s version. This includes setting your line ups and tactics, sending in instructions during a game and more.

Worse is that FMT 17 still incorrectly credits stats in the after match report with players either inactive or not even in the team. Remember those injured players I was telling you about? One had a broken leg and will be out for 2 months, yet he still got credited with 2 goals.

This is one of those rare times that I can say that I felt truly robbed because so little was added to this series, nothing from the past versions seems fixed and it’s really frustrating to play this game thinking I could have just kept playing FMT 16.

If you are a hardcore player that must have the updated version, then buying this is a no brainer. If you are someone a little more discerning that doesn’t need the yearly updates, stay away and wait until next year after the new release to see if you really need the newest iteration.

Rating: 2 out of 5

Editor’s note: Football Manager Touch 17 is available via the Android and Apple stores.