Hi, I'm James Price, author of Piggyback's forthcoming PES5 guide. We released a newsletter to all piggybackinteractive.com subscribers at the end of last week, and I thought you all might be interested to read it. [Newsletter begins] It was shortly after the release of Pro Evolution Soccer 4, towards the end of an epic multiplayer tournament, that we first discussed the possibility of writing a PES guide. As the conversation meandered back and forth against a backdrop of shouts, laughs and instructive epithets from those either side of the PlayStation 2, we noticed that a player had sustained a "yellow cross" minor injury. This otherwise inconsequential incident proved to be the catalyst for a major debate. Everyone agreed that such injuries led to a reduction in a player's abilities in PES4, but which ones exactly? Would it be worth allowing a star player to continue if mildly hurt? Would it harm an ace striker's ability to hit the target, or an indispensable defender's strength in the tackle? If so, how serious would the penalties be? The more we deliberated, we came to realise that - despite certain members of the team being genuinely expert players - there were many other things that we didn't entirely understand. While those present could confidently and accurately explain many PES4 features and systems, there were other aspects of the game for which we could only volunteer plausible assumptions, educated guesses, or even wild speculation. From stamina loss to condition arrows, the effects of specific special abilities to the relative merits of other player characteristics, we wondered if other PES players had also considered such issues. Looking to fan sites and forums for answers, we instead found many further questions and a similar thirst for Pro Evo information. Talking to both friends and other PES players online, it was surprising to discover that even experienced players didn't know about many specific tricks, features or functions. With that, we decided that we positively had to produce a Pro Evolution Soccer 5 guide. Despite being reminded on more than one occasion of the potential risks - most specifically, the perceived wisdom that guides for sports games are viewed as being utterly dispensable by players, and have a very minor audience - we began laying the groundwork for the book. The first (and most vital) aspect of such a guide, we decided, is that it should offer tips, advice and never-before-revealed insights into the underlying Pro Evo mechanics from the PES5 team. Once we had been assured support from the legendary Shingo "Seabass" Takatsuka (the Pro Evolution Soccer series producer/mastermind) and other members of the PES5 development staff, we began to research and write the guide that we wanted to read. Pestering busy designers and programmers repeatedly for information (our heartfelt thanks and apologies go out to all concerned) during our time in Tokyo, we sought to find the answers to literally hundreds of PES-related questions - including, of course, the handful posed many months before. During informal interviews with Seabass and his colleagues - the results of which can be read throughout the guide - we were frequently struck by the sheer depth and complexity of PES5's simulation of the real-life sport. Nothing is preordained: practically every part of it is calculated "on the fly", with outstandingly authentic realtime physics governing each kick, collision, tackle and save. On a more immediately tangible level, we learned how a player's attributes and condition play a critical role in what he can and can't achieve on the PES5 pitch. While virtuoso veterans may be familiar with various moves and game concepts featured in the guide, even they will be surprised by many insights and revelations contained within its pages. We certainly have been. In short, the PES5 book has been a labour of love from start to finish. Despite warnings from PES-playing friends on the dangers of mixing business and pleasure, the Official Pro Evolution Soccer 5 Strategy Guide editorial team is pleased to announce that even months of enforced play have not diminished its enthusiasm for PES5. It is, without question, the finest football game money can buy, and we hope the guide will enhance your enjoyment of it. The Official Pro Evolution Soccer 5 Strategy Guide will be released in the UK on October 21, 2005. It will be available at all good videogame outlets. For more information (and free sample pages, which are due to be uploaded soon), visit http://www.piggybackinteractive.com/en/guides/info/?id_guide=29.