I have to say it felt fantastic that My Office was so well received. Even though it was mostly designed for new users at the start, I’ve always been confident about it being a good improvement for everyone. Especially considering all the nice feedback we’ve gotten along the way. But it’s always hard to know what people will say about a change like this; not really because of the content of it – rather because it breaks old habits. So, naturally I worried a little about that, which in the end was pretty much uncalled for. I’m really glad you like it, it made me feel really good.
There was one thing though (there always is, isn’t it?). Some seemed to be a bit concerned about the chairman of the board, wondering who’s club it really is. Is it mine, or someone elses? Let’s clear the fog a little.
Contrary to what many may think, the board is not a new invention in Hattrick. It’s always existed. As long as I can remember you’ve been introduced to the board in the first welcome email, but from there on it’s not been very clear that the board has existed. As long as you’ve not faced bankruptcy or been inactive for a while that is. So I don’t really blame you for forgetting about it.
The chairman character in My Office will from now on make their existence more clearer, but as he said: they will remain in the background and let your run the show.
So, nothing has really changed, it’s just been made clearer. Just as you’ve always done you will keep on performing the duties of both manager and owner. You’re still in charge, you’re the boss of your club. It’s always been your club in that sense, and will always be.
What’s the use of the board then? Well, as mentioned above they set some boundaries – one can say they set the limits within you can freely act. You can freely spend the money in your club as you wish, but if you’re below 500k € in debt the board will declare the club bankrupt and sack you. You can login how often you want, but if you don’t login for 7 weeks the board will fire you. I guess you don’t really think of these things as limits in that sense, but that’s what they are.
There are also other things we can use the board for in a similar fashion in the future. For example we do need something that make sure hoarding a huge pile of money (which you can later use to overspend on salaries etc) is not a necessity to play competitively or to win the top series. Or that you can’t spend a lot of money in one go for a cup race, which sets the competition out of play. It’s just not how I would like the game to be played or what I want the game to be about, I would say it’s more a usage of exploits in the current game design.
Here the board can play a role and set a limit to how much you can overspend on weekly basis, or for teams with a shitload of money on their account the board can limit how much of the funds that can be used within a certain period of time. And with this we could make these exploits “real” strategies instead. And as such we can include them in the new staff system, which also means you could manage them (but not totally set them out of play). And if you then use choose to use these strategies, it in turn means that you can’t maximize in the usage of other strategies at the same time.
Just so noone freaks out now; this is not about taking any money away from anyone’s account. Money you have on your account will always be your money, but how much of it you can spend can be limited. As I’ve said before; hoarding in itself is not really a problem, spending it (in a blast or continously overspend) is.
So to sum up, the chairman will remain in the background and let us run the club according to our own wish. As we’ve always did, and always will. There may be some boundaries for how we can spend (a shitload of) money, just as there is already limits for how much below zero we can go. But we make the calls, we’re the bosses, it’s our clubs. As it should be.