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6/9/02 . . .
A bit behind our schedule, but teamsheets and first set of fixtures will be winging their way to the International Managers almost any day now. The hold-up has been down to some managers not submitting players' ages, so we've had to painstakingly look through our databases to lift the required information.
Unfortunately, because of the World Cup preparations, please do not arrange any more friendlies, whether club or internationals, from now on, as the time is not available to play them. We'll let you know when they can begin again.
As you know the current competition has finally ended, and it is our aim to get the next one underway as soon as possible. Hopefully, details will be sent out within the next 2 weeks. It is hoped that a revamped "OFFENCE D" from the Euro leagues will be included in the Champions League set-up, bringing additional tactical options and extra creative freshness.
We are giving you advance notification that we will soon be adjusting the end-of-season ratings ever so slightly, full details will be given as each league's season comes to an end. Some leagues are very competitive already, but there are a few where little seems to have changed, despite the major ratings changes last year, but our overall aim is to increase competitiveness and make things a bit more realistic.
Another meeting coming up next week with the web designers, hopefully they've made some major advances, and as far as we know the October deadline for all the new features is still a realistic target. Remember, all the very latest rules are now on-line and can be accessed and printed-out at any time.
Premier 31 has been able to resist a merger thanks to a batch of new members that joined via the website, and so has Premier 47, which is great news. Premier 5, however, is about to be merged with Premier 52 next week and will finally resume their much-anticipated new season. The website is bringing in new members regularly now, which makes the long-term future for Apex very bright, and once the website has been improved, we will be advertising the game and website very heavily indeed, and it is hoped that membership will increase dramatically. In the meantime, keep spreading the word, as you all have been doing, and if you can link us up with any other soccer sites you may come across, by all means do so.

23/7/02 . . .
We now have at least 6 people working on website development and things are looking good. As you know, we are attempting to bring you more on-line stats and information regarding all the Premier Leagues, so that you will be able to look at all the latest news from your particular Premier, including league tables, match reports, teamsheets and even details about other teams and their players. As you can appreciate this is a massive project for us to undertake, but we're pleased to announce that we're on the right track and the new-look website with its intricate menu systems is a sheer delight to look at. (We've just had a sneak preview and demonstration!) The website is being produced using all the latest "cutting edge" technology and it shows.
Each club will be issued with a unique username and password and you'll be receiving e-mail updates letting you know the moment your league has been updated. We're hoping to go "live" by October and when this happens the Apex experience will never be the same again. The instant access to all your league records will be very exciting and the ability to print off all kinds of stats: tables, teamsheets, reports, transfer activity reports and all kinds of other goodies will keep you glued to your PC night and day!! Plus you'll be able to look at ALL the leagues, not just your own, which will help teams with their Champions League preparations, seeing how strong your opponents are, etc, just as you would be able to do in real-life! You'll also be able to send us your latest tactics and teamsheets to us by e-mail.
The Apex World Cup will be kicking off in August (probably in the last week) and we're pleased to see that most World Cup squads have been submitted and hopefully the managers will be receiving their computerised teamsheets for the first matches during August.
We're still trying to merge more leagues to improve service and competitiveness and the latest merger was between P19 and P2, retaining the P2 name. P19 are still in the World Cup, though.
The next likely merger looks set to be between P5 and probably P31, although a definite decision has not been made.

11/06/02 . . .
If a player gets transferred, whether in the public or private transfer markets, and the rating of the player increases, your club will not be compensated for the rating hit that it has missed out on. 
Neither can you now stipulate that a deal that you arrange must be cancelled due to a player's rating increasing, because it is far too time-consuming manually checking players' status due to the massive amount of transfer activity that goes on.
Due to the fact that the rules apply to all managers, and will be strictly adhered to, it cannot be deemed to be unfair. 
Over the course of a season, if your club engages in a lot of transfer activity, rating hits and misses will even themselves out.
We recommend that when managers negotiate deals they should take this into account and decide among themselves that if any of them miss out on a rating hit in this manner, then future deals between themselves can reflect that. This will also hopefully encourage managers to build up good relationships between themselves, so that transfer deals can benefit all clubs involved.

28/05/02 . . .
You're all probably wondering why you can't access the discussion board and leave messages!
Don't worry, the system hasn't crashed or anything, it's simply because we are now introducing the password system for you all, as you have rightly demanded. We're sorry it has taken so long, but we were hoping to avoid it to enable new users to get involved with the minimum of hassle. We were also hoping the anonymous messages that seem to cause so much uproar would disappear.
Anyway, to get you started again and posting messages as normal all you need to do is send us an e-mail to steve@loadfootball.com with the following details: Your Name, Your User Name (up to 15 characters only, and no spaces, slashes, dashes etc, are allowed only letters or numbers), Your e-mail address, and a Password (must be between 5-10 characters). As soon as we receive your e-mail, we will log your details into the system and you will be able to post messages again. This will mean that we will be able to keep track of who is posting what.
Please start sending in your e-mails immediately so we can get the forum up and running again.
Once again, we ask that you keep the language clean and avoid any personal abuse, as this will not be tolerated and we will have to remove you from the discussion boards. We want to build a community of members who add to the enjoyment of this great hobby of ours and will be a positive way of recruiting new members and encouraging existing members to get more involved and continue to be involved for many years to come. 
We're pleased to say that this already happening and most of you seem to get on extremely well with each other, despite the intense rivalry. Keep it up, folks!

21//05/02 . . .
We are giving you advance notice that Apex will be closed for just over a week in July, the exact dates being Tuesday 23rd July to Wednesday 31st July, more details will be given nearer the time. This will mean that the leagues usually processed that week will be processed two weeks later. This will help us have a break from the usual continual processing of results and work on other parts of Apex, such as the website, and look at bringing in more improvements. 
Website development has been continuing behind-the-scenes, and we now hope to be using a team of website experts to help bring about the vast improvements we've all been dreaming about! Another meeting is scheduled for the end of this week to advance things further.
We're also happy to report that International Managers have been submitting their teams as requested and hopefully everything will work out smoothly and the World Cup will get underway in the next few months as scheduled.
We also hope to implement a password system to login to the discussion boards over the next 10 days.

23/04/02 . . . 
As most of you are aware, the World Cup draw has already been made by Ian Connett and helpers and we should have it all on-line real soon along with group fixtures. Lots of suggestions had been made about ratings differences and cut-off points, etc, so we'll be making formal announcements soon on our decision regarding these details.
The fictional leagues keep getting stronger and P34 is still in the lead with 49 managers at present, but P3 has almost caught up with 47 managers, as lots of new managers joined Division 3 recently. P61 has also began the new season in very good health with just under 35 bosses at the helm and a brand new cup competition. P16 is only a couple of managers behind P3 and vying for that top spot. It also looks like P56 will be having a new batch of managers coming on board in the new season, so it, too, could be hitting that magical 50 figure.
Some of you have been asking about joining up a good Euro league and we can suggest EP19 and EP20. These leagues have never merged and have a good number of managers already playing. Teams in Divisions 2 and 3 are available, some of them with lots of healthy bank balances. If you've never tried any Euro leagues before, why not have a go now, especially since some new improvements have recently been introduced. To join, simply let us know when you next send in your team instructions and we'll send you a starter pack and team.

26/03/02 . . .
We've had all kinds of things happening over the last month, good and bad. Firstly, as you all know, the website was down for about a week thanks to an admin cock-up by our webhosts, which really had the phone red-hot, resulting in us running behind our results processing. In the same week, we also had an attempted break-in at our HQ, but thankfully our security systems did a great job in keeping the criminals out. But they did manage to damage the property, which again meant disruption! Anyway, that's all been sorted out now. Oh, on top of that, the dreaded 'flu bug struck which meant staff sickness and lost time! All happening within the same week!
But, on the plus side, we have managed to improve the website again, by introducing the rules on-line and a fast-track method of new members being able to join Apex, because as some of you know we have had problems in that area. But all sorted now!
More radical improvements still coming up with the website, including secure on-line payments . . . watch this space.
Before we sign off, please can you always try to visit the home page whenever you log on first, as we will be introducing improvements regularly. Heck, why not check it out now, to see what we mean!

27/02/02 . . .
"OFF D" will probably making its debut in the EURO leagues this week, as managers try it out for the first time. We're already planning enhancements to this new tactical option, but we wait to see how it does once it goes "live", we also want your feedback on it, as well. Please do note, however, that we have no plans at the moment to introduce this offence to the Apex PBM Soccer game.
Our web design expert came in recently and the meeting went well and we're very excited at the possibilities in the near future. The first thing he will get to grips with is the Football Forecast predictions game, so that it will be up and running on a regular basis, as he tries to automate many of the functions. We also have someone else working on a solution to place all your league information, team, results and player databases on-line, for you to look at and print-out at your leisure, even your latest match reports.

21/02/02 . . .
Many thanks to your responses so far about possible improvements to the website/game. Each response and suggestion is being carefully monitored and evaluated . . .
A web design expert is coming to Apex HQ in the next few days to advise us on how to implement additions to the website . . .
Keep watching this page for more news to come . . . In the meantime, can you please try and visit the jobsite banner at the top of the page and the hotel site on the discussions page, as this helps us in our effort to bring in extra revenue for the website . . .

16/02/02 . . .

Players of ANY age can now be coached up to a rating of 6+.

All clubs will start off with a minimum of 1,000,000 at
the start of a new season.

Players rated 7+ and over will now lose 1 rating at the end
of the season (previously it was only half a rating). 
Of course, another half rating will still also be lost if
aged 35 and over.

TV revenue for league games is increased to 200,000 per game.
TV revenue for Cup games has also been slightly increased
for earlier rounds.

Gate receipts have been increased as follows:
DIV 1 . . . 10 per seat sold over 10,000 (used to be 7)
DIV 2 . . . 7 per seat sold over 10,000 (used to be 5)
DIV 3 . . . 5 per seat sold over 10,000 (used to be 3)
Wages have been unaffected.

You can now play Offence D if you wish, a new tactical option
which is based on mobile midfield play, where the midfield
players rotate a lot more between defence, midfield and attack,
very hard to play against and break down. However, because
most of the formations are restricted to having just one
attacker, a lot more pressure is put on midfielders to score.
Anyway, try it out and see what happens!
Only the following formations are allowed:
4-4-2, 3-5-2, 4-5-1, 3-6-1

We are also currently working on creating a new youth system,
but this could take some time, so in the meantime we have
sent out Apex scouts to scour the world scene and unearth new
young talent, especially from South America, so watch out for
some regular young Free Agents!

14/02/02 . . .

Players' wages have now increased as follows:
DIV 3: 100 x rating of player
DIV 2: 200 x rating of player
DIV 1: 300 x rating of player
and * players will receive an extra 100 regardless of division or rating,
so in effect players wages have doubled.

Gate receipts have also now doubled, which means every seat sold over 10,000 
will bring in 4, previously it used to be 2.

The cost to increase your capacity has also doubled to 10 per seat.

Sponsorship revenue has increased as follows with immediate effect:
Positions 1- 6 . . . 400,000
              7-12 . . . 350,000
             13-18 . . . 275,000
             19-24 . . . 200,000

TV revenue for league games has doubled to 100,000 per game

Capacities over 49,999 at the end of the season will be cut by 20%.

Watch out for more updates coming soon.

12/02/02 . . . As part of the new improvements coming up in Apex PBM Soccer, League Cup matches will yield double gate receipts for clubs and the wages have also been doubled. This has already come into effect. K.O Cup matches and league games will also be affected, as we introduce these changes over the next few days. There are also some other updates to the financial side of the game being introduced, including increased sponsorship money. The reason these changes are being implemented is because we're trying to bring the game a bit closer to real-life where crowd revenue, sponsorship, and players' wages have increased dramatically over the last few years. So the financial side of this game will continue to be under review and increases introduced in stages. By the way, wages for Scouts, Trainers and Coaches are also under review.
WEBSITE LATEST: As you can see, we are putting increased effort to improve the website, and some changes are in the pipeline, some of them will be introduced over the next few weeks, others will take longer. The first improvement, due within the next two weeks, is that the full updated rules for Apex PBM Soccer will be available on this website for you to read or print out and these will continually be updated as new changes in the game occur. In the longer-term we are getting quotations to see if it viable to send results via e-mail and to receive your team instructions via e-mail, thereby cutting out the postal service (which looks like it's going downhill soon, anyway!). Of course, those members who prefer to use the postal system will still be able to do so. As you know we have not increased the price per-game for a few years and want to keep the current price at the same rate, which is why sending and receiving turns via e-mail will help achieve this. We are also hoping to bring back the popular Football Forecast game.
EURO PREMIER LEAGUE NEWS: Changes are being programmed for the Euro game, the biggest change will be the introduction of a youth system and increased tactical options and formations through a new "OFFENCE D". Can't say no more about this just yet, the new changes are currently being tested. We had hoped to introduce them last week, but a few bugs popped up that need to be sorted out first. End-of-season ratings will also be adjusted to help make the leagues more competitive, as well as more funds being made available for clubs through extra gate receipts, etc.




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