Here are some screenshots for the new Offensive Formations pages and the updated Offensive Playbook pages. You might notice that there are A LOT of settings and text box inputs on these pages and I hope to get some feedback and find some ways where we can simplify some of these settings. It might be that we create Basic/Advanced modes for playbooks as well, or just hook that in to the Basic/Advanced mode we are already using for formations.
For formations, the idea is that the user will construct Formation Sets which he can use throughout his playbooks and will be a something that grows over time, not necessarily create everything you'd ever want at once. Playbooks have the same concept in that you build them over time. The Formation Set allows the user to focus on which players will be on the field for a play and what they will be doing. The Playbooks allow the user to focus on which plays will be called and what they will be running. I think that once a user understands how they are separate and related, he can get some pretty powerful combinations and flexibility - and hopefully it doesn't get too confusing. If it does, we will work on places where we can simplify, play I know you can't really tell how these are going to work with just images, so better feedback will come once you can actually get your hands on them.
To start out (Basic Mode), everyone will have one Formation Set for each of our 6 formations used in the game. The layout shows you which slot lines up where on the field and the blocking assignments that slot is set to. Blocking assignments are pre-defined for slots for each formation to preserve the variety of those formations. There are some slots that will have options for these assignments, such as the FB spot.
When you click the Edit button, you will be taken to another page where you can adjust the settings - blocking options, rush distributions, and passing target distributions. These distributions should be looked at in columns as it is the chance that that player in that slot gets the ball for the given play call. For instance, if a Rush Inside is called, then it looks at the distributions for Rush Inside to determine who gets the ball.
When you switch to Advanced Mode, more options open up to you. You can now set multiple formation sets for each of the 6 formations used in the game, so you could have multiple I-Formation sets with different settings.
You will now manage formation sets in groups by formation (drop down at top of page) and you can create a new formation by either clicking the New button for a formation based on the default settings, or click the Copy button for a formation based on an existing formation set.
If you have Advanced Position Roles activated, you can now utilize the various Depth Charts you have set for each position (i.e. RB, FB, RBSp, ...). Now for each slot you have greater control over which players are pulled in to that slot when using the specific formation set.
In this case, I set the TE to not block and gave him some passing distribution and therefore want to pull from my "TE - Possession" depth chart. I also set one WR to get the majority of long and deep passes and set that slot to pull from the "WR - Deep" depth chart. And, of course, since the RB2 slot is blocking, I pull him in from the "Full Back" depth chart.
For offensive playbooks, you now maintain those separately from the game plans and the defensive playbooks. We plan on expanding the number of standard playbooks and theming them not only for run or pass but also for formations.
For the most part, the offensive playbooks will be the same as what you are used to - broken down by down and range. Below are the major differences.
You can now set your "red zone" range with the "Inside Opp" setting. We have also expanded to use an "Inside Own" setting in which you have a little more control over the plays called on your end of the field.
For each play, you will select a Formation Set (see above) and fill out how you want the play to play out under "Inside Own", "Inside Opp" and in between. Each of those can be set separately for Rush/Pass split, Rush Inside/Outside split, and the Passing Distribution split.
This is where I'd like to see us work on ways to simplify those settings, even if it means predefined splits in drop downs. I think we can also build ways to copy settings from downs and individual plays that will also help. It may seem daunting, but remember that the idea is that you build these over time and tweak them now and again, but not have to do this every day.
Let me know what you guys think or if you have any suggestions. Remember that I'll be out next week, but I'll see if I can get online to keep in touch.