Army developing virtual world to train troops

The U.S. Army is looking to build a large virtual world similar to that of Second Life to help train soldiers. According to InformationWeek, the project will be called the Army Research, Development and Engineering Command's Simulation and Training Center. They are currently seeking a system integrator to build the complex virtual world.

The goal of the project is to create an environment similar to a massively multiplayer online game. The training simulator will offer artificial intelligence to move and interact with the terrain similar to Earth. The world will also simulate weather as it happens on Earth and allow people playing to have multiple views such as how the terrain would look through the scope of a weapon. Players will also be able to interact with each other through either voice or instant message to help accomplish the current mission.

The Army hopes to get the application to "ingest and maintain correlation with tactical terrain data, artificially intelligent agents with basic scripting control, and external real-time data visualization capability," along with the hope of supporting 10,000 active users within the first two years and the project completed in the third year.

This is not the first time a U.S. Military branch has used a virtual environment for training or simulation. The Air Force setup a simulated base in Second Life called My Base.

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24 Comments

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Hmm. Modern soldiering has already become too much like a video game.
Recent leaked footage of disgraceful conduct by American boys with guns in Iraq evidences this.

But the soldier will get fat and wont even know how to climb coz they're used to spacebar and not real jump.

And they will kill lots of innocent civilians since they KNOW that those civilians will be respawned in 1 hour.

P1R4T3 said,
But the soldier will get fat and wont even know how to climb coz they're used to spacebar and not real jump.

And they will kill lots of innocent civilians since they KNOW that those civilians will be respawned in 1 hour.

Doubt it will work that way. More than likely they'll get a nice shafting for shooting a civvy in-game, which will make them think twice before doing so in a real life situation. The fact that games have features like that (respawn) doesn't mean that a game that is intended to be realistic will have them too.

Metodi Mitov said,

Doubt it will work that way. More than likely they'll get a nice shafting for shooting a civvy in-game, which will make them think twice before doing so in a real life situation. The fact that games have features like that (respawn) doesn't mean that a game that is intended to be realistic will have them too.

Respawn would be more like debriefing, getting yelled at for being a complete failure, and being told to try again.

P1R4T3 said,
But the soldier will get fat and wont even know how to climb coz they're used to spacebar and not real jump.

Use Natal as the interface

P1R4T3 said,
But the soldier will get fat and wont even know how to climb coz they're used to spacebar and not real jump.

They'll all just drive ROV's. No need to ride inside your fighter, mech, or tank. When you get blown up have another air-dropped into theater and pick up where you left off.

It was kind of neat when only the US had ROV tech, but when a North Korean or Iranian (or heck, totally unaffilated) UAV takes out my family for talking smack about their fearless leader or something... not cool.

This is genius, imo. There are more then a few game worlds where if you dropped me on a planet modelled after them, accurately, I would be able to navigate around pretty safely. If soldiers could gain local knowledge without ever visiting the battlefield and then be strategically dropped in that would be amazing.

In theory of course, relies on accurate imagery etc.

AmazingRando said,
LFG in Kabul to do Bin Laden quest.

please link achievement and wow-heroes GS. come to middle of dal for inspection