The US Navy, after its successful mission that took out Osama Bin Laden last week, is now looking for help in fighting Somali pirates via an MMO game. Fast Company reports that starting on Monday, May 16, it will launch MMOWGLI (Massive Multiplayer Online WarGame Leveraging the Internet) a new project that combines both crowdsourcing features with a game.
According to the story, the MMOWGLI project will involve over 1,000 military and civilian players that will take the roles of Somali pirates or members of an anti-pirate task force. At first players will attempt to set up shipping lanes for naval traffic, along with factors like "logistics of arming ships, the likelihood of pirate attacks and the financial, jurisdictional and temporal difficulties of military action to support commercial shipping and cruise ships."
After that is all set up, the "fun" begins as the players controlling the pirates start their attacks. The anti-pirate task force players will have to come up with strategy to defeat the pirates such as "arrange hostage rescues, raids of pirate camps, humanitarian assistance to Somalia and attacks on Somali ships." All of this play time is designed to help the Navy come up with ideas that it might not have thought up otherwise in order to combat the very real threat of Somali pirates on the high seas.
While this particular game is being made specifically to learn and combat the Somali pirate threat, the article claims that the MMOWGLI project could be adapted to be used for other military scenarios.