24 July 2012

What Comes After VBS-2?

The Army sure would like to know.

The U.S. Army is in the market for a next-generation first-person-shooter (FPS) training game that will incorporate the latest video game technology. The game will replace Virtual Battlespace 2, the Army’s official tactical training game since 2008.

With a July 12 close date for questions and comments, officials are likely now digesting responses to a June draft Request for Proposal. Published by the Army’s Program Executive Office for Simulation, Training and Instrumentation, it essentially calls for an updated version of VBS2 rather than a revolutionary change in gaming. VBS2, from Bohemia Interactive Simulations, has become the mothership of tactical simulations for the U.S. Army and Marine Corps, as well as other nations such as Britain and Australia.

There are a plethora of add-ons and modifications, from IED training to foreign language instruction, plus versions for Special Operations Command and spinoffs such as VBS2 Fires for indirect fire training. The Army wants the next-generation sim to continue to work with these add-ons, thus eliminating the need to reinvent the virtual wheel. It also wants the sim to operate on PC, Web-based and mobile platforms, and integrate into a live-virtual-constructive environment. The plan is to have industry offer solutions to these requirements, including how to adapt the latest gaming technology.

By: Brant

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