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Championship Manager 5 bound for console releases

Eidos has announced that its Championship Manager franchise is heading to the PlayStation 2 for the first time, with Gusto Games currently working on PS2 and Xbox versions of the forthcoming Championship Manager 5.

The console versions will launch in early 2005, a few months after the PC title - which is being created by new studio Beautiful Game Studios, after series creators Sports Interactive split away from Eidos.

Sports Interactive are now working on a new title, Football Manager 2005, which will be published by Sega. The terms of the split between Eidos and SI means that Beautiful Game have been forced to start from scratch on Championship Manager 5, with none of the code or data from the previous games available to them.

Although Sports Interactive created an Xbox version of Championship Manager in the past, the series has never previously made its way to the PlayStation 2 - ostensibly because the lack of a hard drive in the system made it impossible to store the amount of data required for accurate simulation of the football leagues.

However, Eidos' European MD Jonathan Kemp promised that the PS2 and Xbox versions of the new game will not be cut down, explaining in a statement that "our new technology being developed for Championship Manager 5 has been designed in a way to enable a faithful recreation of the Championship Manager experience on PlayStation 2 and Xbox."

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Rob Fahey: Rob Fahey is a former editor of who spent several years living in Japan and probably still has a mint condition Dreamcast Samba de Amigo set.