PES Games – A History Of Pro Evolution Soccer Part 2

In 2003, Pro Evolution Soccer 3 was released and included a big game play engine update, introducing new features such as the advantage rule and much improved long-ball passing techniques. PES games were now starting to get their hands on lesser European licenses such as the Dutch Eredivisie, but at least this was a start or inroad into FIFA's dominance by Konami.

Pro Evo 3 was the first PES game to be programmed for PC via Microsoft and it was popular, but the lack of online mode disappointed. Further enhancements to the licensing agreement occurred over the next few PES iterations, with many more official teams and players included, but the big one, the Premier League, always eluded Konami – not something FIFA was willing to give up. The Master League (career mode) was expanded and editing options improved, making likenesses even closer to reality.

In 2005 Pro Evolution Soccer 5 finally cemented Pro Evo online, allowing players to play against other PES gamers anywhere in the world. Jubilation reigned in online forums as we finally got real English teams, albeit only two – Arsenal and Chelsea, but again it was a start.

At this point in history PES was still dominant over FIFA, generally getting higher review scores, despite the lack of complete licenses throughout the game. PES stood up so well against the FIFA machine because of the superb two player experience.

Playing against a computer can only ever be so good, as computer AI is still no match for the gaming experience of another human being. It was this sense of randomness and downright fun that kept Pro Evo at the top of the footy charts and this position was further solidified in Pro Evolution Soccer 6, which for many PES fans was the finest hour for Konami.

Pro Evo 6 or Winning Eleven 10 had most of the best elements that have survived to the present incarnation. Fast, fluid, attacking football, a combative tackling mechanic and a slew of new tricks and flicks. To go along with the ever present official Japanese strip, the England National team were now decked out in their official kit as well as other nations. The Xbox version even had next generation high-definition graphics and this would be the last version before Pro Evo made the transition to PS3.

There was no Pro Evo 7, the next installment would arrive in 2007 and the naming convention changed into what remains to this day – Pro Evolution Soccer 2008 or PES 2008. This was the first version to debut on PS3, but still remained on PS2 and the other consoles. High definition graphics enhanced the gaming experience and PES started to move away from FIFA in the player likenesses stakes, although at the same time the complacency led to FIFA closing the gap and it was around these years that FIFA for the first time started to achieve higher review scores, as ironically, it was likened to the PES game play of old.

Even though many things improved, PES games started to struggle during the versions 2008-2012. Improvements in graphics, master league, competitions, licenses and online play, were negated by fussy changes to game play, that made Pro Evo harder, but sometimes less fun. It seemed that the game almost had a cheat mode in player versus computer games on harder skill levels, as it could be almost impossible to win the ball back or keep it against the computer. Keepers would inexplicably parry weak shots straight back out to unmarked strikers for easy tap ins and referees could be incredibly harsh, sending players off for minor offences, whereas it seemed computer controlled players could get away with murder!

The last few years have been repeated 'overhaul' fixes for PES as they've tried to regain top spot. Shingo Takatsuka known as 'Seabass' has come up with multiple buzz words every year as Pro Evo innovates and pushes the limits of the high-definition consoles and what PS3 And XBOX 360 can handle. The online play has improved on PS3 as it struggled at first to catch up to the online system XBOX had in place and now the edit modes, coupled with the skill and efficiency of PES fans means that the lack of licenses is almost irrelevant.

PES games will have their latest blockbuster out in October 2012 and by all accounts, online rumors and playable demos, PES is back. The review scores were close to FIFA last year and although the FIFA machine now exudes a high level of polish and superb game play, if PES 2013 regains some of that magic from the mid noughties, it'll be top dog again this autumn.

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5 Star Luxury Hotels in Scotland

If you’ve got the cash to splurge, or if you just fancy dreaming, Scotland has a number of top luxury hotels to match its spectacular scenery. Here are ten of the best. Some of these are famous names you may well have heard of, other perhaps not so. All of them however are amongst the most opulent accommodation you’ll find in Scotland.

The Marcliffe Hotel & Spa

Situated on the outskirts of Aberdeen amongst 11 acres of woodland grounds, this privately owned hotel is a lovely blend of the traditional and contemporary. The spa boasts aromatherapy, massages, and body treatments, whilst hunting, shooting and fishing are available on the local estates via the hotel’s agents. There is a strong focus on local and regional cuisine in the Marcliffe’s Conservatory Restaurant, with lunch often being served outdoors in summer. This is a hotel strongly focused on comfort and relaxation.

Kinloch House

This is a truly authentic Scottish country house hotel, elegant with an old world romance. Kinloch House is located a few miles outside the town of Blairgowrie in rural Perthshire amongst 25 acres of grounds. Family owned and run, it’s a popular wedding and big business meeting venue. The rooms echo it’s days in the Victorian era as a luxury sporting lodge, with intricate period details and lavish furnishings. Its restaurant is thought to be amongst the best in Perthshire, with top quality locally-sourced ingredients always on the menu.

Turnberry Resort

A famous name in Scottish accommodation which, like a couple of other hotels on this list, has a strong golfing association, having hosted four Open Championships on the course which it overlooks. Turnberry, located in rural Ayrshire, has received numerous accolades, including the Scottish Hotel of the Year award and the Golf Tourism Scotland award. It has a strong Edwardian feel, with the rooms boasting spectacular views across the golf course and the Firth of Clyde. There’s also a luxury spa with 20 metre swimming pool, fitness studio, sauna and steam room.

2121 Restaurant with Rooms

Something a little different – 2121, located in Edinburgh, is a Michelin Star restaurant which also sports four lavishly appointed rooms, each with a different theme and with fine views across Scotland’s capital city. As well as said Michelin Star it’s received a plethora of accolades for its cuisine and accommodation from the likes of the AA, the National Restaurant Awards, the Scottish Tourist Board, and the Scottish Style Awards.

Old Course Hotel

Another golfing Mecca in Scotland (indeed it’s the home of the game) is St Andrews, and just like Turnberry here you’ll find a another grand hotel perched by another famous golf course. The Old Course Hotel offers a 3 AA rosette restaurant alongside several other acclaimed (but less formal) bars and restaurants. There are 144 beautifully appointed rooms, including 35 suites, featuring amongst other lavish touches, silk lined walls, whilst a number possess private balconies. The hotel’s opulent spa features a 20 metre swimming pool with cascading waterfall, hydrotherapy pool, rooftop hot tub, steam room and sauna.

The Witchery by the Castle

At the top of the Royal Mile in Edinburgh’s Old Town, hidden amongst a muddle of historic buildings, you’ll find this little gem. Established in 1979 in the basement of a then derelict building, such is the reputation The Witchery has built over the years that it’s been said it’s ‘almost a famous as the castle itself’. Its reputation is built on an excellent restaurant, boasting the best of Scottish cuisine, which has proven a real hit with local residents, not to mention a plethora of celebrities. Its eight captivating suites have been described as ‘one the seven wonders of the hotel world’, each totally unique, filled with antiques and historic fixtures and fittings. This is a place to stay like no other.

Loch Ness Lodge

Recently the recipient of a prestigious UK & Ireland small hotel award, this exclusive, intimate venue is located on the banks of Loch Ness a couple of miles from the village of Drumnadrochit, and is particularly geared towards romantic escapes, weddings, and small house parties. Rooms are individually named and styled, taking inspiration from the lodge’s natural surroundings. There is excellent fine dining on offer, with the hotel always striving to source local, organic and ethically prepared produce, whilst also boasting its own kitchen garden. There is easy access to many local activities, including kayaking, fishing, shooting and pony trekking, and you certainly won’t find anywhere more sumptuous to stay for a spot of Nessie hunting!

Gleneagles Hotel

A most famous name in Scottish hotels, this world-renowned Spa & Golf Resort is located on an 850 acre Perthshire estate. It’s 232 rooms are all opulently appointed, with a choice of the traditional or the modern, whilst there’s also 26 suites available, the top one of which, the Royal Lochnagar Suite, is the absolute last word in luxury. The hotel’s spa is an incredible experience, designed to be the most tranquil space possible. Additionally there are two swimming pools, gym, saunas and Turkish bath. Outdoor activities provided include shooting, fishing, equestrian, 4 x 4 driving and of course, golf – Gleneagles has three championship courses and is set to host the Ryder Cup in 2014.

Inverlochy Castle

If you ever wanted to stay in a castle in Scotland, here’s how to do it in style! Located just outside the town of Fort William, Inverlochy is an incredible luxury hotel and restaurant located in the most spectacular of settings, among the glens and mountains of the West Highlands. In its former life as a 19th century private residence Queen Victoria once spent a week here, and as a hotel it very much retains that massively grand Victorian flavour. There are 17 individually styled and named rooms, all very spacious and sumptuously appointed, with facilities including laptop with internet access, and a personal safe. The restaurant is internationally recognised and boasts a Michelin Star. Sporting and Country Pursuits can be enjoyed on the local 75,000 acre Achnacarry Estate, as well as golf on Fort William’s 18 hole course, mountain biking, and winter sports at the nearby Nevis Range.

Glenapp Castle

Of course if you prefer your hotel castles in the south of Scotland, the Ayrshire village of Ballantrae to be precise, this one might fit the bill. Glenapp Castle, like Inverlochy above, is a an incredibly luxurious, opulent and sumptuously appointed Scottish hotel. To give you some idea, even the smallest of its 17 individually named, themed and styled rooms is big (198 sq. feet) and features an original fireplace with real flames. It boast one Michelin Star and four AA Rosettes for its fine dining restaurant, with an emphasis on the highest quality local Ayrshire produce. 36 acres of gardens are available for the exclusive use of guests, who can also can also enjoy access to a nearby normally private members spa.

Business Development Opportunities in Qatar

Doing business in Qatar is an increasingly attractive option for foreign investors for a number of reasons, mostly related to the country's rapidly developing legislation in regards to foreign investment in the country and its consequent projected growth.

As the country develops, there are specific areas of opportunity that those looking to explore the Qatari market are encouraged to invest in by consulting agencies. Some of these opportunities and areas for development are listed below, providing the potential for local businesses to grow as well as encouraging further foreign expansion into the Middle East.

Firstly, there are numerous business opportunities for those in the domains of education and training, with the country being home to institutions such as the Qatar Foundation, the Qatar Science and Technology Park and the Supreme Education Council. Each of these implements its own programs and encouragements investment from foreign companies and educational institutions.

Those looking to explore the Qatari market and its educational sector will be interested to know that the country is looking to improve the skills and education of its citizens and work through the Qatar Vision 2030 program, which could lead to opportunities for foreign training providers to deliver their expertise in many areas of academia and skills training.

Another industry that is advised to explore the Qatari market is the energy industry, and not only because this region of the world has abundant natural resources in the way of oil and gas; the Qatar government is very interested in developing a cleaner, greener method of gas extraction which provides the opportunity for partnership with foreign engineering companies and investors.

In addition to its non-renewable energy sources, the country is also looking to develop its capacity for harnessing solar energy which, due to the nation's geographical location, is in abundance. Qatar also currently produces a large volume of industrial products such as vinyl, fertilizer, ethylene and other chemicals, with opportunities for local partnerships available in this area.

Those looking to explore the Qatari market will be excited to learn that the country recently won the bid to host the FIFA World Cup in 2022. This will determinely provide huge opportunities for foreign industry and investors to work on various projects that relate to this sporting competition and it should also be noted that all sport in Qatar currently enjoys very strong governmental support.

Qatar is also an area of ​​interest for those in the construction industry, as the country's government is currently continuing to rapidly develop the nation's infrastructure. In addition to this, the upcoming FIFA World Cup will provide many opportunities for construction companies to deliver their services, as will the nation's efforts to find greener and more sustainable energy solutions.

One of the reasons that Qatar is interested in developing its infrastructure is due to the growing population and workforce of the country. This also has an impact for healthcare companies that are looking to explore the Qatari market.

In addition to providing healthcare solutions for the population of the country, the Qatari government also intends for the nation to become a center for life science research, and is there before in invest in a number of projects that will drive them farther towards achieving this goal .

Along with delivering medical care, pharmaceuticals and medical research services, foreign companies and investors also have the opportunity to provide healthcare training and supply hospital equipment and furniture in Qatar as part of its healthcare objectives.

Businesses looking to explore the Qatari market will be pleasantly surprised to discover that this small nation currently offers a wealth of opportunity across a variety of domains. From construction and green energy to health care and education, there are possibilities for many to deliver their solutions and products to this rapidly growing country that is investing heavily in its future.

Why Football Fans Need Their Own Social Network

In recent years social media has evolved from a communication tool between people to a dominant driving force on the World Wide Web. Nowadays social media has a huge impact not only on the digital realm, but also on business, politics, trends and almost all aspects of our world.

A common assumption is that social networks are totally driven by people, but that is partly incorrect, in reality social networks are driven by dominant forces and media giants. In reality people are not shaping social media, but social media is shaped for them and they just follow, which is a sad reality by itself because social networks were supposed to be driven by the people not the other way around.

How this is related to football. Football is the most popular sport on earth, more than 3.4 Billion people watched world cup 2010, almost half of the planet! And it was estimated that about 1 billion people watched world Cup 2014 final between Germany and Argentina. Traditionally football has always been covered by TV, newspapers and news websites. But in recent years social networks started taking an important portion of this coverage. With the shift from traditional news to social media news, and from computer devices to mobile devices, people are now more comfortable in consuming football news in their favorite social network, and at the comfort of their mobile devices. You can get all football news from all sources at your news feeds depending on the pages that you follow, compare this with search engines or bookmarking several websites, the first option became the more popular method of following sports events.

Although football has good presence in top social networks but for football enthusiasts that presence is missing or not enough, for instance you still do not get updated with all football events, and as a football fan you will need to do exhausting search to follow all the pages you are interested in. Other problem is that football news are buried inside swarm of posts from all other subjects, where you can not easily filter out posts that are not related to football.

Football fans deserve their own social network where they can talk exclusively about football and share related news and stories. They need social channels that are dedicated for football fans, where they can meet, interact and share football passion. They need a place where they can follow the latest news and matches results without the need to leave to search for the information.

In a new world governed by social media, people are becoming addicted to the ease of access to information that social media provides. And because people are obsessed with ease of access to what they are interested in, the future of social media will be shifting towards niche social networks that are specialized in specific interests and affinities.

La Liga Rules for Non-European Players

La Liga or La Liga BBVA is the top-level professional club football competition in Spain. It is considered one of the most popular as well as competitive domestic leagues throughout the world, with English Premier League, Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue 1 being other most viewed national leagues. Just like every football league in the world, La Liga is also guided by specific rules as prepared by the Spanish football authority in alignment with the FIFA guidelines. Let us now take a closer look at the La Liga rules for the non-EU players.

Rules for Non-European Players in La Liga

According to the rules in La Liga, a club playing in the top division Spanish football league is not allowed to recruit more than three non-EU players. The same figure is 2 for the second division football clubs (LigaAdelate). The clubs in the Segunda Division B are not allowed to recruit any non-EU player. The clubs relegated to the second or third division are, however, permitted to retain the non-EU players until their contracts expire.

According to a decision adopted by the Spanish Federation, the teams playing in La Liga and the second division football in the country should make an optimum use of the rules and construct their squads with the foreign payers as many as permissible by the authority.

Citizenship for Foreign Players

As per La Liga rules, the players can claim citizenship of Spain from their native lands. A non-European player can apply for Spanish citizenship. However, he must play for five years in Spain in order to be eligible for Spain citizenship. Furthermore, the players arriving from Caribbean, African and the Pacific counties (commonly referred to as ACP countries) are not included in the non-EU category due to the Kolpak Ruling.

Arsenal

From La Liga, we will head our way towards English Premier League side Arsenal. Fondly called as the Gunners, they are one of the most successful Premier League sides in England. Currently managed by Arsene Wenger, Arsenal have their own home ground at the Emirates Stadium. They have produced some of the big names in the world football and attracted several top-tier players to London.

Achievements by Arsenal

Arsenal has a good number of silverware in their collection. The club has won Premier League titles 13 times. They won their last Premier League title in 2004 and currently lead the league table to make it 14 in their profile. They have won FA Cup 12 times in their history and lifted FA Community Shield.

Arsenal honors are not limited to only achievements within domestic field but also extended to international level. They have won UEFA Champions League as well as former UEFA Europa League (Former UEFA Cup). They are also the winner of FIFA Club World Cup and UEFA Super Cup. In 1994, Arsenal wrapped up UEFA Cup Winners Cup.

Arsenal has several stars on their board. They brought German International Mesut Ozil from Real Madrid on a club record deal in summer of 2013.

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