Videojuegos militares

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Adapting COTS Games for Military Simulation
Gwenda Fong* Defence Science & Technology Agency Abstract
The interactive digital medium of computer games holds promise for application in the realm of military simulation. This paper presents the Defence Science & Technology Agency (DSTA) and Singapore Armed Forces’ (SAF) initiative to leverage on commercial computer games for militaryapplications, how several SAF schools have adopted modified commercial games to enhance classroom instruction, and our future plans to extend the use of games in the SAF. Keywords: games, military simulation, training

Training Value

Emergence of dual-purpose games

Traditional Military Simulators

New breed of simulators



Convergence of simulators and games based on similarenabling technologies: - Real-time 3D graphics & animation - Character & terrain modeling - Artificial Intelligence - Networking - Sound - User Interfaces - Tools for creating synthetic environments

COTS games

Common perception is that computer games and military simulators could not be more different – many games are entertaining by virtue of drawing participants into a virtual world thatcalls for suspension of disbelief, while military simulators seek to attain a high level of realism in order to derive meaningful simulation results. However, they in fact share a common set of enabling technologies, and it is beneficial to both the game industry and military simulation community to leverage on the other’s innovative solutions [Zyda and Sheehan 1997]. This paper describes theDefence Science & Technology Agency and Singapore Armed Forces’ initiative to leverage on computer games for military applications, the approach we have adopted in successfully modifying suitable commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) games to find relevance for training, and our future plans.

Games of the past

Figure 1: Convergence of Military Simulators and COTS games


Gaming in theMilitary

Indeed, the potential of computer games as a cost effective conduit to motivate and engage a game-savvy generation of soldiers in repetitive tactical thinking Anytime Anywhere has not gone unnoticed among various armed forces. Back in 1995, the U.S. Marine Corps had the prescience to take advantage of the Doom shareware in the development of Marine Doom to hone the teamwork andcoordination of four-soldier fire teams [Riddell 1997]. The advent of fully 3D games presented a whole new world of possibilities for military application. In the past few years, the U.S. Army has pumped in millions of dollars to work with developers to create various games, including America’s Army which started out as a recruitment tool but has since been used to train future officers at West Point, andFull Spectrum Warrior which aims to train squad leaders in real-life combat tactics of urban warfare [Roth 2003; Reuters 2003]. While these games developed by the U.S. Army have made the crossover into the mainstream gaming community, several COTS games such as Delta Force 2, Steel Beasts, and Falcon 4.0 have also been adapted by various armed forces to enhance their relevance to militarytraining [Macedonia 2002; Calvert 2003; Zyda and Sheehan 1997].


Convergence of simulation and games

Military simulation systems evolved as sophisticated applications that run on high-powered computer workstations while computer games were initially programmed by hobbyists to run on machines like the Commodore Amiga [Herz 2002]. However, the advent of faster processors, larger hard disks, andgraphic accelerators to PC owners enabled game developers to leverage on advances by computer scientists in areas such as real-time 3D graphics, artificial intelligence and networking. The increasing power of the PC heralded the extremely lucrative game industry that has produced numerous titles that begin to rival military simulators in terms of level of detail and richness of experience....
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