A Deckade Games Review of FASISAC
Gather your team and get ready for the ultimate kickoff with FASISAC: Five A Side International Soccer Association Championships.
FASISAC is a football (or soccer for our international friends) themed card and dice game that will put your management skills to the test.
As a top manager you’ll get the chance to draft your team, select the best tactic and boost up your players’ skills through clever gameplay.
FASISAC is a card game like no other we’ve played before, which is both addictive and competitive. A perfect all rounder for a predominately 2 player game.
The game rules come in two forms. A Quickstart Training Match which will quickly get you up to grips and speed of the main mechanics of the game. And Full Match rules which add in the drafting, tactics and boost card explanations which fills out the game and makes it wholly more interesting and fun.
In the training match players start by rolling a d12 dice each in order to determine who will be the Home team manager and who will be the Away team manager. The highest number gets to be the Home Team.
Each manager then gets 5 player cards each. 1 Goalkeeper and 4 players which make up your team. The remaining positions are Striker, Midfield Left, Midfield Right and Defender. The cards are laid out on the table as follows:
You then have Event Cards (5 home attacks and 5 away attacks) which when shuffled will determine which team will be the first to attack.
The first Event Card is revealed at Kick Off and the attacking manager will roll a white dice to determine which of their players will be the first to attack. The defending manager will roll a red dice to determine which of their players will be the first to defend.
Once the attacking and defending players have been determined, it’s time for the Head to Head. In this part of the game the attacking team will roll a d12 dice first, and the number rolled will be added to their attacking player’s Skill level number. Likewise, the defending team will then roll a d12 dice and that number will be added to their defending player’s Tackling level number.
Now this is where it gets interesting. If the total Skill level number for the attacking team is greater than the total Tackling level number of the defending team, then the attacking team’s attack will be successful and they will breeze past their rival’s defender for a shot on the goal.
However, if the total Tackling level number for the defending team is higher, or equal to the total Skill level number of the attacking team, then the attack will be successfully obstructed, and the attack is over.
Shots on the goal are taken in a similar fashion to attacking. Only this time the attacking player goes head-to-head with the defending team’s Goalkeeper. Once again the attacking player rolls a d12 dice first, but the number rolled is added to the player’s Shooting level number. The defending player rolls next and that number is added to their Goalkeeping level number.
If the attacker’s overall Shooting number is higher than the defending player’s overall Goalkeeping number then GOOOAL! The goal is scored. However, if the numbers are equal or the defender’s overall Goalkeeping number is higher, then the Goalkeeper successfully saves the goal.
Now the real finesse of the game comes in with the Full Match. Here managers get the chance to draft their own players and will have 8 in total for their team.
Each manager selects 5 players to use in their starting line-up and the remaining substitutes have a chance to be swapped in later on during half time.
In the Full Match, Tactics Cards are used to determine how many Attack Event Cards and Boost Cards each team will get to use throughout the game.
There are 6 different possible tactics: High Press, Possession, Sit Deep, Fluid, Direct and Counter. Each with a unique symbol that represents the tactic. These symbols are also present on the player cards, and indicate what specialist skills that player has.
The fun part is trying to choose a tactic that you think will give you an advantage over your opponent based on which tactic they are selecting. This is because certain tactics are better against other tactics.
As well as Tactic Cards there are also Boost Cards. Boost cards can be very influential throughout the game and they give added advantages towards gameplay. There are two types of Boost Cards: Attribute Boosts and Reroll Boosts.
Attribute Boosts are used in head to heads before dice rolling to add to the attacker’s or defender’s number level. For example, a Shooting Boost card can add +3 points before a shot on the goal is taken in order to increase that striker’s shooting level number, with the hope of giving them a better chance of achieving a high shooting score.
Reroll Boosts allow managers to reroll the dice immediately after an unsatisfactory roll. This comes in handy when you are attacking and are looking to increase your chances of being able to take a shot on the goal. Especially if your attacker has a high shooting level.
With these added extras, the head to head battle proceeds in the same way as it does during a Training Match.
Once all the event attacks have been played from the first draft, the game gets to half time. During half time, managers have the opportunity to change tactics and starting line up. This is where possible substitutions come in from the players that were not in the original line up.
Events and boosts are determined again, just as with the first half, and the head to head game is played through once more. All unused Boost cards from the first half can be carried through to the second half (so it might be worth hanging onto a couple if you can).
The winner of the match is the team who scores the most goals of course!
Gameplay in Action
Now we’ve spoken a lot about the rules here, but that’s because this game is so unique we thought it was important for you all to get a nice understanding of just how sophisticated it is.
We started by playing a couple rounds of the Training Match to get to grips with the main mechanics of the game. We quickly realised that this was a whole lot of fun and being competitive we couldn’t wait to get stuck in with the Full Match.
Drafting the Teams
The drafting part of the game was interesting. I unfortunately got the short straw and was selected to be the Away Team. This meant that I lost out on picking the top player for my team. But nonetheless I kept my spirits high and ended up with a nice well rounded team.
This included Minh Zhang (from China), a top striker with a shooting level of 9, and a great defender, Kuuku Akua (from Ghana) with a tackling level of 9.
Next up tactics. In hindsight I realised that I definitely could have made better use of thinking about my tactics. But that’s the joy of the game, it becomes a balance between trying to get what you think the best players are going to be and being mindful of their abilities in terms of tactics.
Now fortunately I had enough players which shared similar abilities to allow me to focus on using the High Press tactic for the match – 3 to be exact. This gave me 5 attack events and 4 boost cards.
My opponent’s chosen tactic was Possession. A smart move as this allowed them to gain an additional attack card, since High Press gives Possession a versus bonus. The versus bonuses are key here when planning tactics. And as a result they ended up with 6 attack events and 4 boost cards, given them a slight advantage over me.
The game played through nice and steady at first. We were both doing well at tackling and defending off one another’s attacking players. In fact this meant that for the first few events neither team had a chance to shoot for a goal.
I eventually decided enough was enough and at the next available chance I used a Skill Boost card worth +3 to increase my player’s chances of winning the next attack. This, plus Harry Lewis’s (my Midfield Left) skill level of 7 gave me a headstart of 10 points, against the opposing team’s 6 points tackling level.
The odds were in my favour, and as planned I managed to successfully wiz past the defender and proceed to take my first shot for goal.
Sadly no joy. Yet neither was my opponent’s luck in that day. In fact by some miracle I was able to triumph over all of their use of boost cards, using a combination of my own boost cards and a dash of lady luck.
As a result the game ended in a formidable draw. But naturally we couldn’t leave it there as the odds were too high – we had who was going to make the next round of Tea riding on this!
The Final Shootout
It was time for penalties. When the match goes to penalties each manager selects 3 players to go straight to shooting against the opposite team’s goalkeeper.
So naturally we both selected our top players with the highest Shooting levels. For me the highest potential striker I had a shooting level of 9. My other two players were 6 and 4 respectively. I had a lot of hard work to do if I was going to win this shootout as the opposition had an overall better lineup than myself.
As with most penalty shootouts I put my top player up first, and he was straight in there with the goal, yes! Likewise my rival also scored on the first attempt so we were back to even stevens.
Second goals were both successfully saved, so it was down to the final wire. We never thought it would come to this. The pressure was almost worse than watching England play in any World Cup match.
I was up first, my player shooting was only a 6 compared to my rival’s goalkeeping of 9. Things were not looking good. And alas I hit the post on this one and it wasn’t meant to be.
But I still had a shred of hope, perhaps if my opponent missed, a sudden death goal could save me. They had saved their best player till last, so were 9 versus my goalkeeper’s 8. Already a disadvantage on my part. The dice were rolled and just like that, the jammy dodger only went and rolled a 12!
With no chance of a come back for me, I simply stood up to go and put the kettle on. That night I ditched the tea had an Irish coffee.
Pros and Cons of FASISAC
The brains behind the game
You’ve heard from us now let’s hear from the wonderful creators behind the game.
FASISAC was created by Glyn Richards, who understandably is a massive game lover and football fan.
We asked Glyn what inspired him to create this superb game, Glyn says:
“I wanted to create a physical game that captured the emotional feel of the Championship Manager/Football Manager series of computer games. The first iteration was 18 years ago and it has variously been explored as a trading card game, an app and a computer game. It was in 2018 that the game found its voice and was able to bring the experience of managing a football through a match to the table.”
We also asked who else helps Glyn with the creation of FASISAC:
“My wife, Emily, has been amazingly supportive. She has been the best playtester from the start, despite not liking football. She beats me all the time because she can always predict what tactic I’ll choose.
My brother, John, has also been key to the game’s development as he can always find a way to pull apart an element of the game that I thought was good enough and make it that bit better.”
FASISAC is yet to be released, but will be launched on Kickstarter in the near future.
You can also follow the journey on social media:
So there you have it, a football game for footy fans and non-footy fans alike. A great game of strategy, planning, management and a sprinkling of luck.
One of the most well thought out games we’ve played in a while. The ability to bring football to life without the physical kicking of a ball is not easy to accomplish in any board game.
This is probably why there are very few football board games and I can’t think of any great football card games (outside of trivia and top trumps), until FASISAC of course.
You’ve read all about how the gameplay works, but that’s not all the game has to offer. There are also a few other variations you can get stuck into which offer 3 or 4 management tournaments and other ways to draft players.
And a little birdie tells us there’s a lot more in the pipeline to come too so watch this space!
Overall, great game, awesome tactics, fantastic for 2 players – and if there was a FASISAC fan club, we’d sign up!
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