How to Play SmallBall Football


This Help page contains a walk-through of all the steps you'll need to take to start managing and training your own new SmallBall team.

If this is your first time using Smallball, we suggest you read the entire page.

Otherwise, please select the topic you wish to read:

Quick Start
Click here

Setting up your team

The Basic concept of SmallBall

Starting SmallBall Football

How to Train your team

The Trainer Scoreboard functions

Player Skills

Training Potential (TP)

Seasons, Leagues and Games

Reviewing Public games

Your Team Page

The Star Rating & Honor Rating

How to use Ticket codes

Setting up your team
This is the Profile window. Here is where you set the essential information for your team.

Email Address
Its important that enter your email address, when your team is challenged an email is sent to you. Also reports and prizes will be sent to this address. If you don't want ANY emails from SmallBall you can unselect the Receive Email Stats option. This means you don't have to enter a fake email.

This is how YOU protect your team from being taken from you. Make sure no one can guess your password. Make it complex and write it down. Once you login SmallBall will save the password so you don't have to enter it everytime. Please note: SmallBall is not responsible for lost or stolen teams! YOU MUST BE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR OWN TEAM!

Assistant Trainer
Check this if you want to enable an Assistant Trainer. This is a powerful feature that allows you to employ another person to help train your team. The assistant gets his/her own password that you create. With the Team ID# and this password the assistant can open and train your team. The assistant however cannot change the password of the team so there is no danger of losing your team to an evil assistant trainer. You may want to employ an assistant when you go on vacation or if you just want to team up with another person to train your team. The Assistant Trainer feature allows you to seek training assistance with compromising the security of your team.

Forum ID
If you register for the SmallBall community forums you will get a forum ID number. If you enter it here, then a button that links to your forum profile will appear. This will allow other members of SmallBall to contact you via the forum email without giving your personal email, or via the private message system. Check out the SmallBall forums here: www.forums.smallball.org


This is a profile for a specific team.   You can own muliple teams - each will have its own profile.


Make an impossible to guess password to protect your team! Use your Team ID# and your Password to open your team. Make sure your password is secure or someone may steal your team!


Your Team's Name
After you set up your team, the next step is to name your team. Please take your time and think about what name you want for your team. Remember once you name them and start playing matches against other people your team will begin its history and reputation in the world of SmallBall so consider the team name well. When you have the perfect name, click the trainer button, then in the Edit menu select the option Names.


The Basic Concept
After you set up your team, its time to begin your football legacy! Your goal is to make your team the best they can be. How you do that is simple:

Train your players
Each player is unique. Each player should get specific training according to his position, and strengths and weaknesses. You must decide what kind of training each player needs.

Play Matches against other teams

This is the reason for training to begin with. Find some opponents and try to beat them. A well matched football game will give you many clues to what your players need.

Observe your players in action
This is the key! Watch the games you play against different opponents - see how your players do. By observing them, you will be able to see clearly what their strengths and weaknesses are. With this knowledge about your players, you can train them more intelligently.

You decide how to train based on watching the games

If you miss training you can make it up by training!
For best results train each player according to what he needs. Train your players at least once every two days for maximum improvement

Here is where it starts
This is your SmallBall Football Loader. Not only is this the main menu of the game but this program manages updates and season changes.

This button takes your to your own private practice field where you train and manage your team. See Training Field.

Public Game
when you feel your team is ready click this button to play a Public game. To initiate a game enter your desired opponent's team name or ID#.

Exhibition Game

Click this button if you want to player a game against anyone but not have it officially count. You can play anyone anytime without changing your team stats or letting your opponent know. This is a good way to test your team against specific opponents without risking an official loss.

Review Game
In smallball ALL public game can be seen by anyone. When ever a public game (or Proleague game) is played, the game is saved on the servers, if you enter the GameID# here you can watch the game. This is useful to watch games you missed or check out how your opponents teams are playing.

ProLeague Game
Click this button to play one or your scheduled ProLeague or UserLeague games. If your team is in a League the games they are responsible to play will be listed here.

To login another team click this button, enter the team ID# and Password.


You need to tell them what to do!

Look here for new features and offers

Menu Options

Your team is part of a huge community of other teams and owners. Here you can access the web pages that connect your team to the SmallBall world.

Home will open your browser and take you to the SmallBall Football home page. Here is up to the second information about SmallBall Football such as standings and stats. The home page is a portal to all SmallBall web pages and information.

My Team will bring up your team's personal web page. Here you can see stats for the season on each of your players and see the standings and game schedules for all leagues that your team belongs to.

News will take you to the latest online new publication so you can see what's going on in the SmallBall world.

Help will bring your here.

This is your gateway to create, join, or leave leagues that are run by fellow SmallBall team owners. See UserLeague.

In this menu is several powerful options.

Change profile allows you to change your email, password, assistant password, etc.

Enter ticket
opens a window where you can enter a ticket code to enable more powerful features and enhancements to the SmallBall hobby (see Tickets.)

Select country in this menu is the ability to set your team's country of representation and assign your team's flag to their team page.

Low resolution us this option to make SmallBall run in low resolution mode which means everything appears even smaller. About 1/2 size. The advantage to this is smaller desktop footprint and better performance for older less powerful computers. If your default screen resolution is 800 x 600 lo res will be selected automatically.



Training your Team
As a team owner you get a Training Field.

Decide what skill your players need to be trained in and drag them to these ZONES

Your players train here. By dragging your players around and using the training tools available, you can make your players practice and improve their skills. The longer the player trains in a zone the more his skills increase.

For example if you want a player to run faster make him run a lot. The more he runs the more his running skill will increase. Make a player run by dragging him with the mouse.

Watch them play games.You need observe how each of your player's perform so you can look for clues on what kind of training your players need.

How to train your player's skills
Each player has 8 skills and these skills dictate how well your player performs during games. You need to decide which skills should be trained for each player. To train a player you simply make him do the activity of the skill. For example to train the running skill, make your player run. The more they do the more the skills increase.

You can see the actual improvement of their skills when this sparkle effect above their head's appear. If the player is selected, the score board will display a numeric value of the skill improvement. The higher the number, the more skill gains your player receives, and the more TP is used up. Sparkles means they just got a little bit better!


Training Zones

Rest Area: Put your players here when they are out of TP or to temporarily stop them from training and using TP.

Kick Power Zone: The player in this zone Trains specifically in Kick power. Kick distance displays on field monitors.

The Bench: Here is where the bench players rest. You can still train benched players but they do not appear on the field when you play games.

Running Zone: Players dragged into this zone will run until they burn all their TP.

Reaction Zone: To make your players more reactive and able to change directions quicker drag them into the Reaction Zone.

Goalie Zone: The place for your Goalies to train.

Aiming Zone: Placer in this zone help train the goalie and get very good aiming practice.

Dribble Zones: Drag a player to one of the two Dribble Zones to get better at dribbling the ball.

Passing Zone: Players pass the ball around here. This zone trains for aiming, kicking, and interception skills.

The Wall Zone: kicking against the wall trains in kick power and aiming.

Driving Zone: This trains the players to run faster while dribbling the ball.

Interception Zone: In this zone, players train on receiving and intercepting passes.

The Score Board and Trainer Options

Sound On/Off
Turn sound effects on and off with this button.

Label Button
this allows you see this information about all your players simultaneously.

- TP remaining
- Name
- Position Number

Menu Options


- Close
use this to close the trainer and update your players on the server.


- Names
Name your team and players and assign your 3 letter initials.

-Team colors
Set the skin tone, color of shirts, and color of shorts

- Goalie Colors
You can make your goalie uniform different than the other players.

- Secondary team colors
Your team will use these secondary colors when they are the visiting team.

- Posts
Select this to position your players and swap with the bench.

In this section the score board displays general information about your team. Any player selected, by double clicking him, will have his stats displayed here. Look here for messages about your players training progress.

Also the scoreboard will occasionally display other types of information and news.

To select a player double click him or, select his name on the Player Sort List on the right of the display.


More Menu Options


This is a list of formations that you can assign to your team. The 3 numbers represent the number of players in the rear, middle, and front of your formation.


- Posts
Selecting this option will order all your players to stop what ever action they are performing and return to their assigned post on the field.

- Zone
Select Zone when you want the trainer to be in Zone mode. When in Zone mode, you can click and drag any of your players to the training zones on the field.

- Passive Training
Select this option if you want your team to be in passive training mode. When this is enabled your team will train while they play games. This means, what ever actions they take during a game, counts as training. How they train will depend on what they do during a game. Passive training is good for when you can't be available to train your players. If you go on vacation, just put your team on passive training and ask your friends to play your team while you're away. Note: while on passive training TP is consumed!

Player Sort List
Use the Sort List to judge your player's skill levels relative to each other. For example if you sort by Running, the player on the top of this list is the fastest runner on your team. To scroll the list to see you whole team click the up and down triangles.

Skill Icons
Use these icons to sort your players. Each icon represents a different skill. From left to right the icons sort these skills:

Aim, kick power, running, dribbling, interception, and reaction.

Mood Icon
This icon of a face will help you to determine the mood of your players. Click this icon to sort by mood, the player on the top is the player in the best mood. Overall a player in a good mood plays his best. Select a player and this icon will indicate HIS mood.


The empty Blue region to the right is for future features. Stay tuned.

every player gains and losses skills at different rates

Player skills
Each player has 8 different skills. How well a player plays is directly effected by the level of his skills.

Each player, begin totally unique, learns his skills at different rates. Each player requires different amounts of training to keep his skills. As the owner and the trainer, its YOUR job to figure out what players should get what kind of training. Remember, each position on the field requires different skills, so knowing your players will allow to not only train them well, but decide what it the best position for them. Here are the 8 player skills.

Skill Loss
Without training, overtime, your players will lose skills. By training them you can maintain or even increase their skill levels. If you don't want to spend the time training your team, you can have them train by playing games. See Passive Training

This skill governs how fast your player can run.

Aiming Skill
The higher this skill the better a player aims when he kicks the ball.

Kick Power
How far and how fast he can kick is controlled by kick power.

Reaction skill
How quick to react and how fast a player can change directions.

Dribbling skill
This skill controls how fancy your player's foot work is. A good dribbling player will be harder to steal the ball from!

Dribbling skill
This skill controls how fancy your player's foot work is. A good dribbling player will be harder to steal the ball from!

Driving skill
This is how fast a player can run while dribbling the ball.

Goalie skills
This controls how well you goalie makes saves. This skill is for jumping and catching the ball. But for make your goalie quick train him in Reaction and Running too.


Training potential

Each player accumulates training potential (TP) over time. You can see the TP when you select a player in the trainer. The amount of TP a player has is represented as a pie under his feet.

The pie represents the percentage of the maximum amount of TP a player can have.

When you train your players, they use the TP.

The more you train them, the more TP is used up. When the player is empty of TP, you are done training that player until he rests and accumulates more TP.

Every day each of your players will get about 1/2 a pie of TP. After two days the TP pie will be full. You can train your players anytime as long as they have some TP When your players are filled with TP (100%) then they STOP accumulating more TP.

You want to keep your players accumulating as much TP as possible and use it to train and improve their skills.

TP is a very important concept to understand to play SmallBall games!

you want to use up all the TP
The amount of TP is represented by the pie under the player's feet.

It took a day and a half to generate this much TP  -  Players can hold a maximum of 48 hours worth of tp
Training consumes
But over time TP regenerates.


A player can hold only 48 hours worth of TP, if you know you will not be able to train your team for more than 48 hours, try Passive Training, this way your team trains while other other teams challenge them.

Seasons, Leagues and Games

All teams belong to the BigLeague





You must qualify to joint the Proleague

In SmallBall the season is two weeks.

SmallBall has two separate divisions: the Pro Leagues and the Big League. The new seasons for the Pro Leagues and the Big League start on the same day, and are typically two weeks long.  Teams can be members of both divisions, and will have a unique ranking in each division.

The Big League includes all teams currently in SmallBall Football.  It is the free-for-all League where any team can play any other. Big League games are called Public Games.  Wins and losses in these games effect your team's Big League standings ONLY.

Training games can be played against any team.  These games are not recorded in any way, and therefore do not effect any standings. If Passive Training is active, this will also train your team (and use TP as a result).

The Pro Leagues are the highly competitive leagues. When a new team is created in SmallBall, it is not a member of the Pro Leagues. Pro League Games are pre-scheduled by SmallBall at the start of each season. These are games between teams who are in the same Pro League Level.  Wins and losses in these games effect your team's Pro League standings ONLY.  Teams who are at the top slots of their League at the end of the season (slots marked in the standings with a Blue background) will advance into the next higher league level at the start of the next season.  Teams at the bottom of their league (slots with a Red background) will drop down to the next lower league level.  Any team who does not play any games during its season is dropped from the Pro Leagues entirely, and must earn its way back into the Pro Leagues, reentering at the lowest League level.

Entering the Pro Leagues

New teams are only be able to play Exhibition games and Public games until they earn membership into the Pro Leagues. Teams who are not part of the Pro Leagues and wish to earn membership must initiate at least 10 Public Games, and be among the top new teams in the Big league at the end of the current season. 

Teams who accomplish this will earn membership into lowest league level at the start of the next season. If you want to see how your team ranks against other teams attempting to enter the Pro Leagues, check the listing available at the bottom of the Pro League page.

The Season in SmallBall is 2 weeks. The new season starts every 2nd Monday. However, the ProLeague Starts the following Tuesday.


Reviewing your Games and Watching other teams

It is possible to watch games currently in progress, or past games, by selecting Review Game from the SmallBall Start Screen. This feature can be used to review any game, including games between two teams not your own.

To review a game when another team challenges yours, you will need to know the Game ID#.  When your team is challenged, SmallBall sends you an e-mail informing you who has challenged you, and what the Game ID# is for that game.  Enter this Game ID# in the Game To Review window to watch the game.  Depending on whether the game has been completed yet or not, you will either see the current inning of the in Live Game mode, or you will see the start of the first inning in Review Game mode.

To review past games of a rival team, do a search on that team to bring up their Team page. At the top left corner of their Team Page, you can view which teams they have played against recently, and also see the outcome of those games.

To watch any game currently in progress, go to the Live Games link on the Big League page.  A web page will appear showing live games in progress, and the corresponding Game ID numbers to use. Additionally, the Recent Games link will show a list of all the games that have just been completed.

 Game to Review Window
Can be used to watch your games or to spy on other teams

Team Page

SmallBall.com serves a Team Home Page for every team in SmallBall. This single page can be used as the starting location to research any detail about your team, or in fact, any team in Smallball.

At the top of every Team page, is the team name, the team letters, and the team's Star rating (explained below).

On the lower left side of the page is a listing of recent games and the game results. Clicking on any team name here brings up that team's home page. On the right side of the page are the team's standings in the Big League and Pro leagues. Clicking on "Big League" brings up a listing of the top 100 teams that have initiated at least 10 Public Games in the Big League (any team that has played less than 10 games is not shown.)

Anyone can view your Team Page anytime. When you train or play your team the stats on the team page are updated.


Clicking on "Pro League" brings up a page that lists all the active Pro League levels and a link to the Pro Leagues Qualification list (this list displays the top teams currently competing for entry into the Pro Leagues). Below this, is a listing of a number of teams who have Big League rankings similar to your own. You can click on any team name here to see their home team page.

The team page contains the complete statistics for every player on your team.

The easiest way to access your team's home page is by simply clicking on SmallBall.com at the top of the Smallball Start Screen, and then selecting My Team.

The SmallBall.com menu also contains other shortcuts. Clicking on Home brings up the SmallBall Home page, which contains new tips and announcements. News brings up the News page, which is updated regularly with information on the top teams and top games in the league. The Help shortcut brings to you to this help page.

Star Ratings and Statistics * * *

The Star Ratings are a simplified skills ranking system that allows you to roughly judge your team's collective skills compared to other teams. Only men on the roster is considered in your star rating. Players on the bench are not considered for the star rating. This rating only judges the skills of the team, not how intelligently the team has been managed by its owner to ensure that each player is strongest in the skills he needs most to play his position well, and help his team win. Thus, although two teams may have identical Star Ratings, one team may consistently beat the other -- the better team's players may be assigned to field positions that better match their abilities, or they may have a smarter formation.

For example, if two Team Owner's have identical teams and identical star ratings, but only Owner #1 takes the time to discover which player on his team learns and retains driving skill the best and assigns that player to be a forward, while Owner #2 puts that same player as the goalie, then Owner #1 is very likely to win every game against Owner #2. Another example is to imagine 2 new teams, one that has been trained SOLELY on running skills for 5 days, and another team that has been trained equally on all skills for those same days. Even though both teams may have equal training time (and same star ratings), the first team has NO skills in dribbling or kicking, and although they may run MUCH faster than the second team, its very unlikely they'd win any games against the other team.

You can view your team's Star Rating by viewing your team's home page. It is located to the right of your team name.

The Honor Rating

The honor rating is used to display a teams willingness to play games against stronger teams. If your honor rating is lower than your star rating then it means you tend to challenge weaker teams.

To increase your Honor Rating you must play teams that are stronger than yours. Remember a team that is higher in Star Rating is Still be able if the players are positioned better.

How the Honor Rating is calculated:

G = Big League games that you initiated and won

S = the sum of all the teams' stars from the games you initiated and won.

Honor Rating = S/G+0.5
Every season S & G are reset to the Last 10 games.


Daily Star Leagues * * * * *

To find good matches consult the Daily Star Leagues. These are lists of the top teams in each star rating category. For example if you are a 5 star team, look on the five star list for good challenges. The list can be found at the bottom of the BigLeague page.
Click here to go there.

A higher star rating does not guarantee a victory! Its possible to train and position your players to beat higher ranked teams.


How to use SmallBall Tickets
With SmallBall games you can purchase or win ticket codes to enhance and accessorize your team. A ticket code is a long string of letters and numbers that look like this:


Typically you will get a ticket code via email. To use the ticket code select the Enter Ticket option in the Settings menu.

Note: When you purchase your team
you will get an email with the ticket code! Look for the ticket code so you can enter it here.


Copy the ticket from the email and paste it into this window. Once the ticket is there you can do the following:

Validate - this is how you actually use the ticket. Press the validate button after you entered the ticket then it will be applied to your team.

Check - this allows you to see what kind of ticket you have before actually using it.

How to get tickets for your team

There are many types of tickets. Some are won in tournaments, or some can be purchased at the smallball shop. Tickets are often given as gifts from SmallBall inc. or other SmallBall team owners. Keep your eyes open for contests and tournaments that give prizes!