Unless you have been living under a rock these past few years, or weren't one of the 24 million people who purchased FIFA 18, you will be aware of FIFA's FUT Draft feature, which offers you exposure to the premium players we can otherwise only dream of using.
The game mode was introduced in the 2016 edition of the game and has been included in every version since due to its incredible popularity amongst professional gamers and novices alike.
However, if you are yet to experience the ups and downs of partaking in a draft, then join us as we take a running jump into the one of the game's most popular features and reveal all you need to know about the FUT Draft.
What Is FUT Draft?
FUT Draft spans both the offline and online modes, meaning you can test your star-studded squad against other players, or maybe just against the computer if you're feeling less adventurous. Entry into the game mode will set you back a cool 15,000 coins, or 300 FIFA points, but don't be put off by the fee, the rewards can be glorious.
Once you have built your squad (we will delve into the choppy waters of squad building later) you will be tasked with playing four games - win all four, and the rewards are huge. However, lose any of the four games and you will immediately lose your trendy new team along with the 15k investment. Essentially, the more wins you can accumulate the greater the reward, but don't get bogged down with that just yet, we'll discuss what you can get out of it later on.
Getting Started - Team Building
So, you've parted with your hard-earned 15k and are now faced with your first dilemma - picking a formation. You will be presented with five options and this is where you might be tempted to throw football traditions out of the window and opt for a more modern approach to accommodate as many attacking players as possible.
A favoured formation within the FIFA community is 3-4-3 or any variation of this, as it allows for both Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo to occupy the respective wide areas, should you be offered their talents. But this is your team, why not remain firmly in your comfort zone with a more orthodox 4-4-2 system or even - God forbid - five at the back.
Once your formation is locked in, you will be asked to pick a captain who, quite often, will be one of the better players in your squad. After your skipper's been given the nod, you will go through all 23 spots in the squad selecting your players (and a manager) from a choice of five in each position, and this is where we must navigate our way through the convoluted labyrinth which is team chemistry.
There are two types of FUT Drafters. Firstly, we have the camp that take the gung-ho approach and disregard the importance of chemistry completely. These people don't conform to social convention and will typically populate the back row on the school coach - may look cool but ultimately won't achieve a whole lot.
In the other camp are the more analytical players upfront with the teachers, those who wouldn't think twice about overlooking a 99-rated Messi in favour of Angel Di Maria if it means they will secure that coveted 100 chemistry badge.
Ultimately, chemistry is determined by how much in common the players have. So, if they hail from the same league, they will be given a weak chemistry link. Meanwhile, find players from either the same club or from the same nation and they will receive a strong chemistry link, signified by a green line between the players.
The manager can also be key to injecting a little some extra chemistry, so check carefully which manager on offer can give you the biggest boost.
It remains to be seen how much chemistry actually affects gameplay, but it is widely considered that a player who has lower than 7 chemistry will perform worse than his pre-game stats suggest, making him less effective. However, many would rather have an underperforming Luka Modric than an in-form Granit Xhaka - that's your call.
As previously mentioned, FUT Draft is essentially a knockout competition. In order to progress further and reap better rewards, you must win the game, lose and you will be dumped out.
The list of possible rewards is extensive and even if you lose your first game you won't be left empty handed, though it will be highly unlikely you see much of that 15k investment again. The best you can hope for after losing your first game is three gold packs, or even a draft token pack which will buy you another entry; but these will be few and far between.
The rewards improve exponentially as you amass more wins, with the most premium packs in the store on offer should you find yourself three or four wins deep.
Interested? The game mode can offer some respite from the hustle and bustle of the FUT marketplace whilst also giving you the opportunity to broaden your horizons and perhaps employ those players who only the most committed, or affluent, FIFA gamers can use; so get building!