Football Manager now regularly charts among the top games on Steam, and even if you don’t fully understand the appeal of sports games, as a PC gamer you probably get the appeal of number-crunching strategy games. Either way, FM is way more successful than you might realise if you’re outside the bubble, to the tune of 33 million units sold across the series.
Or, rather, 33 and a third million units sold, as director Miles Jacobson has announced on Twitter. The rather specific number is a double entendre – a rare non-sexual double entendre – as the sales record is now a, er, record. Like an LP. Look, I don’t want to have to explain other people’s jokes to you. Suffice to say, Football Manager has sold a whole lot.
To keep the music metaphor going, that’s more sales than The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper or Eagles’ Hotel California. In videogame terms, FM has outsold massively popular series including Kingdom Hearts, Tony Hawk, and – for my PC crowd – Half-Life. (If you want further examples of things Football Manager is more popular than, you can go browse the same Wikipedia pages I’m looking at.)
It’s only getting more popular, too. FM2021 sales reached one million faster than any previous game in the series.
It's a record. Literally.
What a milestone to hit.
Congratulations to the whole team at @SIgames @FootballManager both old and new. pic.twitter.com/MdYNLcqovi
— Miles Jacobson 💙 (@milesSI) February 26, 2021
As one of PCGN’s American staffers, I hope you’re admiring my restraint in not making a joke about calling it soccer or something about Patrick Mahomes in all this, but against all odds, my US-based colleague has managed to get into the thing Europeans call football through the FM games.
If an American becoming the resident football expert at a predominantly British site isn’t proof of the FM magic, I don’t know what is.