The ‘Touch’ version of Football Manager was kicked into touch last year, when Sports Interactive decided not to release a new version for iPad or Android. Plans have changed this season. So will there be a FM23 Touch on iPad and Android? Here’s what’s happening.
FM23 Touch on iPad
There’s some good news for iPad owners: FM Touch is coming back to the platform. It’s not all good news, however.
Sports Interactive have signed a deal to release FM23 Touch on Apple Arcade. That means you’ll have to pay a monthly subscription of £4.99 to access the game (and all the others in the Apple Arcade catalogue). The game will not be sold as a one-off purchase.
Commenting on the official Football Manager forums, a member of SI’s community team said: “Football Manager 2023 Touch is launching on Apple devices because we’ve signed an exclusive partnership with Apple Arcade, a move that makes sense for us as a studio and for the wider FM community.”
Whilst I’m sure it’s a good deal for SI, I’m not totally convinced it “makes sense” for FM players. Previously the game was around £20 as a one-off purchase. That will now only get you four months of play.
FM23 Touch on Android
That deal with Apple Arcade appears to have scuppered any hope of FM23 Touch coming to Android.
SI’s community team says: “If you’re looking for a similar gaming experience on your Android phone/tablet you can play FM23 Console via Xbox Cloud Gaming if you have an active Game Pass Ultimate subscription.”
With all due respect to SI, I tried playing the Xbox version on a tablet last year, and the experience isn’t great. The touch controls are awkward, and while using an Xbox controller to get around the FM menus was easier than I thought it would be, it still wasn’t a patch on the old Touch version for iPad.
The other big disadvantage of relying on Xbox Game Pass (aside from the cost) is that there’s no offline play. That means no long FM sessions while you’re on a ten-hour flight or on the Tube to work.
FM23 Touch on Nintendo Switch
That “exclusive” deal with Apple Arcade hasn’t killed the Nintendo Switch version. There will be a FM23 Touch for Nintendo’s handheld. Happy days for Switchers.
FM23 Touch will be released in November.