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MLS Fantasy: The secret formula for buying low and selling high

The old saying "with money comes power" applies not just in the real world, but in the world that is fantasy soccer as well. And it is downright critical in MLS Fantasy Soccer: Manager.

Simply put, building cash value allows you to spend more money on acquiring the top talent in the league. This, along with good player management, can help you make it very far in the game. Adding an extra $12 million to my fantasy team's value last year, allowed me to finish in the overall top three percent.

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The key is knowing the formula that leads to a player's increase in value. We'll tackle drops in value on Thursday.

There are two categories that affect price fluctuations in the MLS Fantasy game: Transfers In/Out per round and Total Transfers In/Out for the entire season. Those figures can be accessed by hitting the "Transfers" tab and locating the "Player Filter" on the top right. The "Sorted By" dropdown menu allows users to get all the transfer totals.

Let's take the case of Philadelphia Union’s Sébastien Le Toux as an example of how a player's value can increase: On Tuesday at 8 pm ET, his value was still fixed at the $8.0m valuation he started 2013. However, because the net Transfers In for Le Toux (number of Fantasy managers who added Le Toux less the number of Fantasy managers who dropped Le Toux) represented at least 1.8 percent of the overall managers in the league (found on the "My Team" tab), Le Toux's game value increased by $0.1m to $8.1m as of Wednesday morning.

Here's the math: Le Toux's net Transfers In totaled 343 (346 Transfers In minus 3 Transfers Out). And those 343 Fantasy managers represented 1.87 percent of the 18,314 total players in the Fantasy game as of Tuesday (a total found on the right column of the "My Team" tab).

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Breaking that 1.8 percent threshold is the key for a price increase in FS:M.

However, there are a few caveats to this formula: First, the system does not count fantasy managers adding players via "Wildcard" freebies among the net Transfers In. Also, the maximum that any player value can rise between rounds is $0.3m.

Lastly, if a player's net Transfers In crosses that 1.8 pecent threshold on a given day, his value will only rise $0.1m at a time even if those net Transfers In represent 3.6 percent of total Fantasy managers in the game. The next day, the count to the magic 1.8 percent number starts fresh although the Transfers In total doesn't reset.

Tricky stuff. No one said making money was easy.

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