PlayON is among the early entrants to the daily fantasy football industry based in the UK and shows tremendous promise. PlayON is focused on the Premier League and counts managers from 100 different countries around the world. Their sleek interface and willingness to change should keep them relevant in the daily fantasy industry.
PlayON uses Opta statistics to develop a comprehensive scoring matrix with the complexity to allow all types of players to be fantasy contributors. PlayON has a few different game formats offering head to head and multiplayer contests in both single day and full week durations.
PlayON is well funded by experienced entrepreneurs and expects to host millions of pounds worth of wagers in 2015. Let’s look a bit deeper into their product.
How to Play
STEP 1: Signing Up and Depositing
Signing up for PlayON is a fairly simple process. First, you put in some basic information: First Name, Last Name, Email and Password. Next, you will the opportunity to select a username to be used on the sites. You may also use your full name if you so choose.
PlayON provides several options for depositing: Visa Credit Card, Neteller or Skrill. Once you’ve chosen your method of deposit it’s time to take advantage of your Backers promo code.
STEP 2: PlayON Promo Code
Your Backers promo code secures you a very generous XXXX on your first deposit. We recommend depositing in full to get the best bonus since this is only offered on first time deposits.
STEP 3: Choosing a Contest
PlayON currently only offers Premier League games, but they have head to head and multiplayer contests of varying entry fees and size.
They take a pretty standard 10% rake on most games, while lowering to 8% for contests £50 and up. They are one of the first UK-based sites to offer ‘double up’ formats where the top half of a contest’s entrants will double their money. This is a welcome addition as double up formats are one of the best ways to consistently grow your account balance. As site traffic increases we hope to see the size of the double up contests increase as well.
PlayON offers freerolls each week for new Facebook and Twitter followers which will help promote new users. This is a good, fun way to try the product and to get an introduction to daily fantasy. For regular players there are not really any freeroll options which is mildly disappointing as the industry is still in its early stages. A number of other sites do offer weekly freerolls which give managers a chance to develop strategies and get hooked on the game.
STEP 4: Making your Selections
PlayON’s team selection screen is fairly simple and straightforward. There is only one option for formation, which is limiting, but the ease of use makes up for that. PlayON provides ample information regarding injuries and suspensions which will help managers that are short on time to not make any big mistakes.
The budget and team construction is a highlight of PlayON. It allows for competitive teams without being able to select anyone you want. Loading times are nonexistent and the functionality of the team selection is top notch.
One drawback is there is no limit to the number of players from one club you can select. This becomes of particular concern when there are fewer games to choose from. They also offer an “autopick” option which could become helpful if it was a bit more clever, but does not pick competitive teams.
- Game Interface
The top of the PlayON screen has buttons for depositing and signing in and out. The most useful navigation tools are in the lower right corner where you can select “My Teams” and see what you have going live.
Overall, navigation on PlayON is not a strong suit. The buttons used in the screenshot above are not intuitive enough to easily create teams and join contests. The addition of the “My Teams” links on the bottom of the screen helps but they should be located more prominently.
Functionality / Design
PlayON has a sleek design and easy functionality. This is certainly one of the strongest aspects of the site and an important one to excel in. The site is fluid and works quickly, limiting load times. The squad selection screen and in-play updates are both well designed.
Squad Size, Player Values and Scoring
Squad size for PlayON is typical with a 4-4-2 as the sole formation option, along with a keeper. They do not use a bench or any sort of subs which becomes a problem when lineup lock occurs two hours prior to the first kickoff. This alters strategy considerably as there is no recourse if you select a player who does not start.
The scoring is fantastic. Drawn from Opta stats, there are enough scoring plays to allow defenders and defensive midfielders to gain value, but not too many scoring plays that it becomes difficult to determine how your players have performed. Attackers primarily score from goals, assists and shots on target. Defenders gain points from tackles, interceptions, clearances and clean sheets, but both defenders and keepers lose points for each goal conceded. Defenders will not accumulate as many points as attackers for the most part, but they do not command as much of your budget either.
Player values are fair but are not updated quickly enough. For instance, Harry Kane is still barely one of the top 20 priced players despite his recent year. This causes significant overlap among manager selections. More reactive values will be necessary as PlayON grows. The budget is good otherwise, meaning that as soon as player values are corrected the game will be in great shape.
Withdrawing money is easy from PlayON. Your withdrawal will first be applied to your original deposit option and then the remainder is up to you.
The mobile site is a work in progress. The site has been revamped to be mobile-friendly and is aesthetically pleasing and easy to manage. The load times for some screens were problematic though in our efforts to use PlayON from our mobile device.
PlayON has the most unique promotion we have seen, awarding what serves as a Player of the Year on their Leaderboard. Each fantasy manager has their top 5 scores from any gameweek totalled and the top 3 scorers win prizes. £1000 to the top scorer is a strong reward for consistently good managing.