Questions? Discuss this page in our forum. The link to the draft & Free Agency thread is here.

First off here's a basic rundown of the free agency system in Japan. There are things I'm leaving out because it's a complex system with different layers, but to avoid a dissertation I'll keep it as simple as possible.


Players must reach 7 years of service time to qualify for domestic free agency and they can only move to other NPB teams. Players must be on the team’s top roster for 145 days in order for it to count as a “year” for free agency purposes. Time spent injured or in the minors does not count. Therefore, it can take much longer than 7 years for a player to be eligible for free agency in Japan. Teams signing NPB free agents are required to compensate the player’s former team with money and/or players.


International free agents are free to try their luck overseas as well as sign domestically. In order to be eligible the NPB requires 9 years of service time for all players. MLB teams do not pay compensation to NPB teams when signing NPB free agents (NPB teams do pay.)


At any time a player under contract to an NPB team may request that his team “post” him. The team may refuse, but if they agree the player is offered to all MLB teams in a silent auction for negotiating rights to the player. The player’s NPB team may reject the highest bid, but if it accepts the MLB team has 30 days to negotiate with the player. If agreement is reached, a posting fee is paid to the player’s NPB team; if agreement is not reached the fee is returned to the MLB bidder and the player stays with his respective NPB team. Only a handfull of players have posted, one reason is because a lot of the money which would normally be paid to the player in salary instead goes to the NPB team (posting fee.)

One of our forum contributors stated he saw a posting occur in PYS 2011. However, I was unable to replicate it using the same team and player so this is a question mark. If anyone can provide images of this happening please forward it to us.

If you want to learn more about free NPB agency here's a few good links...





After the draft, the game will talk about free agents, such as Fujikawa, who is leaving the Tigers and can be signed by any team.



Next, you will be brought to a screen showing all free agents. It can be sorted to show only pitchers or specific positions. You dont need to do anything here, this screen is just for information. Press the top button to proceed.

In most cases all the top stars will get signed. But keep in mind players with no offers will go back to their original team! Why? The player didn't retire, he didn't get released, and there is no such things as a free agent pool during the season so the game simply puts them back on the roster. Something to keep in mind if you want to "stick it" to your hated rival.

During testing I had a 96 rated player with 2.9 oku salary demand go unsigned more than once. He went right back on my roster at no cost to me! Sometimes CPU teams run out of money or dont want to blow that much on one player. Again though, most top players will get signed.



You only have 10 turns in the off-season, so make them wisely. The 3 big icons here are:

  • Action
  • See Team
  • Settings

At the upper right is the budget you are given (7.1 oku or 710 million yen). On average your budget will usually be around 6~8 "oku" yen. To give you an idea, the best free agents usually ask for around 2 "oku" salary.

Here are the factors which effect your starting budget:

- Your standing matters (the higher you finish = more money)
- The LESS good players you have (overall rating 75) tthe more money you get.
- You get additional money for every free agent from your team that appears in the FA Pool

Note: 1 oku yen = 100 million yen, this would equal 1.25 million US dollars at the current exchange rate.



- Free Agent Negotiation
- Search for New Foreigners (max offer = 1.0 Oku)
- Trade
- Skip Turn

Note: Searching for a Foreigner or making a trade offer counts as a turn.



- Call Up/Send Down
- See Player Attributes
- Add Created Player
- Release Player (they will not be added to the FA list, you must release them before the draft for that.)



- Save game
- Pennant Setting (to control trades): Allow, Only Allow CPU to trade with user, All CPU trades Off
- End Game

If you're happy with your draft it's a good idea to save here so you can re-do free agency as often as you want.



At the top, you can see that this player is 30 years old, and he is a 12-year veteran. Then, below that, you can see his:

- AFFECTION LEVEL : 5 bars out of 5 here. It's how much the player likes your team at the moment; or basically it indicates how close you are to making a deal. All players start out between 1-4 which will go up or down depending on your offer. (players you release though will start at 0.)

You will see that crappy players tend to start at higher levels because they're probably happy to get any deal. Top players usually start @ 1 bar and make you earn their affection. You may receive a boost here if your team fits a "Players Preference" which is explained below.



- PLAYER TYPE: Free Agent

- COMPENSATION: Required. Top free agents in Japan require a compensation to its original team. If you sign this player, the Marines can pick an unprotected player from your roster (usually a sucky minor leaguer) or money from your team as compensation. Usually this will amount to around 50% of the players asking price. You should memorize this text because it's a very important part of offseason (there are only two: required or not required.)

- INTERESTED TEAMS: The Hawks, Marines and Buffaloe's all have made offers on this player. A max of 7 icons can be shown here. In one rare instance I saw 9 interested teams. In that case the two icons on the far left disappeared.

- PLAYER PREFERENCES:  Here it says: "A team capable of winning it all. Prefers a Central League Team." All teams that fit this description will recieve an increase to starting Affection levels. For example, if you see 2 or 3 bars for a top quality free agent, that most likely means your team fits his preference. If you start out with only 1 bar that probably means your team didn't. There are too many preferences to translate. However, you can tell how much a player likes your team using the following guide:

Good Player: Affection Level 1: Neutral (no player preferences match your team.)
Good Player: Affection Level 2: Moderately wants to play for your team. Example: "I want to play in Central League"
Good Player: Affection Level 3: Really wants to play for your team. Example: "I want to play for Marines!"

Bad Player: Affection Level 1-2: Neutral (no player preferences match your team.)
Bad Player: Affection Level 3-4: Moderately or Really wants to play for your team.



You may want to use this to memorize your teams text and look for players who want to play for you.

Note: there is no such thing as a negative preference. Example: "I hate Lotte, I don't want to play for them!" Preferences will always be positive, the only effect being a boost to starting Affection.

A contending team. Preferably in the Pacific League.

A contending team. Preferably in the Central League

I love Hippon Ham. I want to win with them.

I want to play for Lotte

I want to play in the Pacific League



We decided to negotiate with this player, the proposed salary will be set to what the team thinks he wants. This is the 3rd negotiation with this player. The starting offer was 1-7100, in the second round we offered 1-8400, and we are now increasing the offer to 1-9500.

As you can see in the previous image of Imae, after we offered 1-8400 his "Affection Level" shot up to 5 bars which means he is very close to signing.

If you offer 180~220% then you get the biggest boost. If you offer only 60~70% his Affection drops big. If you want to play it safe in negotation without over-paying offer about 105~120% of the salary he wants. The following chart shows the offer range along with the "boost" it may give you in negotiations...

180-220% +++
130-150% ++
105-120% +
90-100% Neutral
75-90% -
60-70% - -
60% - - -

From my experience, if you play it too safe you risk taking 2-3 turns to close a deal. It wastes time but saves you cash (remember, you only have 10 turns.) Alternatively, you can just blow a big number at the guy and he will sign with you in the first negotation. 



You will then see this screen where the game tells you how the negotiation went, and in this case the player finally signed. Yellow text that means the player accepted AND requires compensation (this process is covered in detail below.) If you don't see yellow text it may say something like "It went well, and we look forward to meeting you again" or it could be a player (who doesn't require compensation) which agreed to sign.

Players don't really decline offers, if they don't sign they are basically saying "Let me think about it." Therefore, do not increase your bid during future negotiations! If Affection level rose that means they liked your offer, so all you need to do is offer the same amount and Affection will continue to rise.

Since the text is in Japanese I guess the best way to tell whether a player signed with you is to see if your money decreased or if he is still available in the free agent pool.



Since I just signed a big name player away from the Marines they will be allowed to pick a player on my team as compensation (or acquire cash.) You will then see this list where you can protect 28 players by checking the box next to their names. At top right it shows that currently I have 21 of 28 players protected. Fortunately, the game automatically checks the obvious players you aren't going to give up; all you have to do is fill in the remaining 7 in this example. Anyone unprotected can potentially be chosen. However, rookies as well as foreigners are automatically exempt from the process and do not take up spots on the list. 

When giving up a player: Click to protect your 28 players then click the yellow button to proceed. It will then tell you which player the CPU chose or how much cash they acquired.

When choosing a player: Click the player you want then click the yellow button. If you want to receive cash instead don't click any player, simply click the yellow button and it will tell you how much cash you got.



The CPU has decided to take your cash (1.24 oku) rather than choose a player from your "protect list." If instead you see an image of a player here then it means the CPU chose one of your players instead of cash.

Note this image was not from the Imae negotiations shown above. As a general rule though you can expect to give up 50% of the players asking price.

Also, a similiar handshake image will appear to announce a trade between other teams. It will then go to a screen showing the trade details.



You can also invest money into searching for a foreigner. The most you can invest is 1-oku. The more money you put in, the better the foreigner is supposed to be. In the off-season foreigners are found instantaneously, there is no need to wait a few days or turns to get someone. Keep in mind though that searching for a foreigner uses 1 turn.

Below is a chart which tells you what rating a player you can expect to get for the dollar amount you invest. For example the attributes image shown here is a foreigner whom I invested max dollar to acquire (1.0 Oku.) Obviously he isn't very versatile but with 97 power look out!

1.0 oku = 60-99
9000-9900 = 55-90
8000-8900 = 50-85
7000-7900 = 45-80
6000-6900 = 40-75
5000-5900 = 35-70
4000-4900 = 30-65
3000-3900 = 25-60
2000-2900 = 20-60
1000-1900 = 15-50
0-900 = 0-45

Below are some examples of foreigners I acquired after offering the max amount (most were rated in the mid-60's.) They usually come with some baggage (sketchy special skills or very poor in some areas) but there are some diamonds out there.

Middle Reliever: Decent stuff but his control is not very good.
Closer: Multiple pitches with 'C' rated sharpness but has poor control.
Center Fielder: I wanted defense & speed but didn't get it. G rated center fielder, E speed, E contact, A power. What on earth is anyone with horrible speed & defense doing in center field? LOL.
2B: This was a good pickup, average contact with A power and D speed. His defense was terrible though (G).
3B: Stellar defense in several locations, but poor hitter. Good speed.
RF: Finally scored with a 74 rated player. 'A' contact, 'A' power, below avg speed, poor defense.



This screen appears when teams make a trade. Shown here the Giants and Lions have agreed to a deal.

If you want to make a trade it's simple. Just select the players and at the bottom you'll see a telephone with a yellow meter (not shown in this image.) The higher the meter goes the better chance the deal will go through. Then click the yellow button to confirm & proceed.



At the end of a round it will notify you which players got signed around the league. In this image it says the Marines signed a Foreigner.



After that you might see another player appear. In this image the game is telling me that I should take a good look at this player (98 rated.)



After each turn, the game will show you news about each team's negotiation, signing news, etc. This is the last screen you will see before the next round starts.



It can be beneficial to keep an eye on what other teams are doing after each round. Especially look for teams making multiple offers on the players you want. This of course means they could be one offer away from signing.

In this round 3 teams made offers on the same player (player name is text on far left.) Here are the results and translations of each:

  1. "Imae has decided to remain with the Marines."
  2. "It looks like the Dragons negotiated with Imae."
  3. "The Swallows negotiated with Imae."

"I signed a player." (Player name on far left.) Look for the longer text with a comma in the middle.

"I found a new foreigner." (Player name is in the middle after the comma.)

"I proposed a trade with the Seibu Lions, but I got turned down." (The Lions team text is on the far left.)

"I chose to skip 1 of my 10 turns."



At the end of free agency players are automatically given experience points (this basically simulates spring training.) The total amount depends on how much money you have left in your budget.

3.0 oku or more = Standard amount + 30 points
1.5 - 3.0 oku = Standard amount + 20 points
1.5 oku or less = Standard amount +10 points



A whopping 9 teams made offers for this player (only 7 icons max can be shown but the Hawks and Buffalo also made offers.) Several of the teams made multiple offers so this player will not last any longer. His Affection was @ level 1 and I got in the bidding early, offering 2.75 OKU which raised Affection to level 3. Knowing he won't last any longer I offered more money (2.95 OKU) hoping it would push him over the top. However, I ended up at level 5 and lost out. Suppose you were to get in late and make an offer in this round @ level 1 Affection? Good luck, because he'll require an astronomical amount.

Below are some observations I have made during my time messing around in FA. This info is not from the manual or strategy guide, they are completely subjective:

1. Get in early: The CPU increases the price of Affection when multiple teams bid on a player. So get in as early as possible if you want to save cash.

2. If you max out Affection you always win! Bid enough to win over a player and the CPU simply moves out of the way and lets you win. I noticed every time I signed a player no other team had bid on him (even when there were many teams interested with multiple offers.) That's the upside, the down side is...

3. Make a solid offer late and you lose: Example - A CPU team bids 85% of asking price in round one & after two negotiations is close to signing a player. You come to the party late, offering 160% and Affection goes from 1 to 3. Too bad, the CPU team wins because players will not sit around waiting for you. The first team to max his Affection wins.

4. Go after the "must have" player right away: The game seems to give you a fair shot in the 1st round. If you bid on any player it protects them from being signed immediately by a CPU team. Thus, you will always have 2 rounds to negotiate for a top player in the beginning. This is where you want to get after the low Affection players.

5. If a player likes you alot bid on them later: If a top player has level 3 Affection for your team that basically means all CPU teams will have to make multiple offers to acquire him (because they will start out at a low Affection.) Simple move on and make bids elsewhere until another team bids for him.

6. Don't panic if a team bids on a player you like: The CPU often bounces around building Affection from the players it wants. Then things heat up in the later rounds and players get signed left & right. In the early rounds things move alot slower.

7. Don't re-sign players from your team right away: Again if nobody else signs them they get put back on your roster for free. Just feel things out and keep an eye on them.