2020 was horrible, but not for Basketball GM

January 1, 2021-

Happy New Year!

I know, everybody's talking about how 2020 sucked and how they hope 2021 will be better. But it's also true that 2020 had at least one redeeming quality - it was a great year for Basketball GM! COVID lockdowns left me with more time to work on development, and it left many of you with more time to play. The end result has been a ton of new features that I won't even try to summarize here, and new records in all usage stats:

YearSessionsPageviewsTotal Play Time (years)
2013135,66413,661,06318.14
2014471,55339,662,53242.06
2015982,92676,650,99966.73
20161,101,25686,009,82970.09
20171,657,749144,489,27386.79
20181,868,091184,571,462100.70
20192,403,039222,568,917136.32
20203,440,761299,207,611206.10

That's a lot of Basketball GM in 2020! And that's not even including Football GM which of course did a lot better in 2020 than in 2019 because it didn't even exist at the beginning of 2019.

I hope Basketball GM and Football GM brought you all some fun and distraction, I know they did for me. And I promise you, I have even bigger things planned for 2021 :)

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Trade frivolities: biggest trades and most lopsided trades

Following up to the recent updates that added a lot of detail to historical trades, today I added two new frivolities, in a brand new Trades section:

Biggest Trades: Trades involving the best players and prospects.

Most Lopsided Trades: Trades where one team's assets produced a lot more value than the other.

You can find them within a league at Tools > Frivolities.

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Improved trade details and a new Trade Summary page

When you make a trade in Basketball GM or Football GM, a summary of that trade is logged and shows up in the transactions list and the news feed. A mildly annoying thing about that is how it handles draft picks. Sure it'll say the trade included a 2021 2nd round pick, but if you check back after the 2021 draft, there's no new information. It doesn't say which player was selected with the pick, which makes it difficult to evaluate trades.

I've gotten many requests to do something about that, and I'm happy to announce that I have finally done something!

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Redesigned league settings page

I just deployed an update including a completely re-designed league settings page. Try it at Tools > League Settings.

Mostly this is just a cosmetic change, but it does have one functional improvement: several of the settings that were previously available only in God Mode are now available any time. Things that don't affect your ability to succeed in the game or win achievements, such as enabling the Elam Ending. Sure it changes game simulation, but it doesn't make it any easier to accomplish anything, so no advantage can be gained by toggling that option.

The cosmetic changes are:

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Player mood improvements for AI team re-signings

October 25, 2020-

Today I released two improvements based on last month's player mood update related to how the AI re-signs its players, in both Basketball GM and Football GM.

First, let me explain how AI re-signings used to work. It's always been a dirty little secret that the AI did not obey the player mood system. That was true of both the old and new player mood systems. Instead, there was a single formula to give "the probability a player re-signs with a team", meant to capture both if the team wants to re-sign the player and if the player is willing to re-sign. The end result of this formula was that high value players often became free agents, but there was no way to reliably predict which players would end up in the free agent market.

To improve on that situation, today's two changes are:

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Nostalgia from my changelog, and how to play 2013 BBGM today

October 20, 2020-

For some reason, I decided to go through my history of blog posts, Reddit posts, and git commits and retroactively create a full changelog of Basketball GM back to the first beta of the web-based version in 2013. It was kind of fun to refresh my memory about everything that's happened so far, and it made me want to write this blog post about it.

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New feature in God Mode to select the winner of a game before it's played

I just added a fun new feature to leagues with God Mode enabled. Now you can determine who wins a game before you sim it.

On the Live Sim page you can set the winner of any of today's games:

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Start real players leagues at different times (preseason, playoffs, draft, after draft) in any season

October 17, 2020-

Portland fans, have you ever wondered what would happen if this draft went differently?

Dallas fans, have you ever wished for another shot at these playoffs?

One of the fun things you can do in Basketball GM is re-run historical situations. But the ones above were tricky to do, because although you could create a league with real rosters from 1984 or 2007, you could only start at the beginning of the season. Play the whole season again and maybe Portland doesn't wind up with the #2 pick, or maybe Dallas doesn't play Golden State in the first round.

That's why today I'm releasing a new feature. In addition to being able to start each historical season in the preseason, you can also start at the beginning of the playoffs, the draft, or after the draft:

This is also true for the current season, so you can create leagues starting today, right before the 2020 draft.

Go give it a try now, or read on for more details.

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Trade deadline

October 5, 2020-

I just added a trade deadline to Basketball GM and Football GM. By default, it happens 60% of the way through the season, but you can change the timing or completely disable it in the God Mode settings under "Trade Deadline".

The trade dealine is visible in the list of games at the top of the screen and on the schedule page. There is also a new entry in the Play menu, "Play until trade deadline". These will only appear for new seasons started after loading the latest version of the game. So for existing leagues, you will have to wait until next season to have a trade deadline.

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New, completely redesigned player mood feature

September 17, 2020-

Basketball GM has always had a concept of player mood. It was the red/yellow/green rectangle you saw on the free agents page, along with descriptive text like "Insulted by your presence" on the negotiation page. But it had a lot of drawbacks.

One major problem with the old mood system was that it did not give you much information. Why is a player happy or sad? Who knows. Behind the scenes there was a logic to it, but it wasn't displayed to the user, leaving you to guess why a player felt a certain way.

Even worse, mood was not displayed during the season. So you'd go into free agency with no idea whether you'd see the dreaded "Refuses to negotiate" message next to a player's name. That made it very difficult to plan ahead for players who are planning to leave.

You may have noticed that the previous paragraphs are all written in the past tense. That's because Basketball GM now has a brand new mood system, that fixes those major problems from the old system and introduces some nice new features too!

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