ZOO revives Premier Manager

Defeats the French.

ZOO Digital has reclaimed the rights to the once proud Premier Manager series, which tumbled into neglect after the then Infogrames bought up Gremlin and slaughtered all their franchises, and plans to release a 2003/04 edition on PS2, PC and GBA this November!

Apparently ZOO has even reassembled various members of Gremlin's original development team for the game's comeback, and plans to give Sports Interactive's dominant Championship Manager series a bit more of a run for its money. A 2003/04 data update for CM4 is anticipated later this year, although nothing's been announced just yet.

Premier Manager 03/04 will comprise all four English league divisions, plus the two top divisions from various other countries, such as Spain, Italy, France and Germany. Scotland, meanwhile, will get its entire league programme. All of these European divisions are said to run simultaneously.

In terms of tech, we're told this is built on a 2D match engine, and that the guys behind the interface have worked on GUIs for UEFA.com, Rugby.com, the Rugbyt League, Formula 1 and the Football League, so, as the release puts it, aesthetics haven't just been governed by the practical demands of programmers.

Anyway, as a budding manager in PM03/04, you'll be able to delegate boring stuff to backroom staff and concentrate on the footy, which will be much more in-depth. Coaching staff are said to have plenty of input, and the manager can actually ask their advice too, as well as taking advantage of more statistical feedback, and tactical and set-piece editors.

Other highlights include enhanced player logic, which will have a direct impact on their careers, and a transfer system which - as with the current farcical summer system - is almost totally driven by players' demands.

Finally, as ZOO puts it, we can look forward to plenty of media intrusions, on and off the pitch politics, prima donnas, financial burdens, egos and agents, whilst juggling transfers, tactics, team management, squad rotation and club development.

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Tom Bramwell

Tom Bramwell

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Tom worked at Eurogamer from early 2000 to late 2014, including seven years as Editor-in-Chief.

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