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Military Simulators

Filed under: General Gaming
Posted by Jeremy on July 7, 2004 10:31 AM
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For years, the US military has used simulators for combat training. These simulators were huge, expensive, and took years to develop. Now, thanks to burgeoning PC power and knowledge learned from video games, these simulators are small, still expensive, and only take months to develop. This article from strategypage.com explains that the newest simulators for the US Army were developed to train US soldiers on how to avoid land mines and insurgent attacks: "Ambush Simulators" as they've been named.

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Mostly, these attacks are aimed at US Humvees. The two training simulators currently being sent to Iraq, one from Lockheed-Martin and one from Raydon are termed, "Ambush Simulators." The Lockheed-Martin simulator consists of large, yet portable, video screens surrounding the soldier. The soldier is virtually placed in the middle of a firefight and can fire his virtual Humvee machine gun or learn to drive to avoid land mines. The simulator from Raydon is extremely portable, consisting of a helmet with a visor which displays images of ambush to the trainee.

Perhaps most amazing about the technology is that the simulators are loaded with actual footage of the streets of Baghdad and as more footage and/or situations come in, the simulators can be quickly reprogrammed to provide the latest in enemy tactics and ambush sites.

I know this isn't exactly "video game" news, but it's interesting that the same technology that is powering "Rainbow Six" or "Full Spectrum Warrior" is being used in the US Army.

I guess the next big thing for wargaming will be to have the military's technology trickle down to the consumer market. In 5-10 years we may all be wearing helmets with visors while playing various wargames. A sobering thought.






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