Windows 7 Award winning video game lets Marines relive real battles


Essential Member
A team of analysts at Camp Lejeune took a top award this spring for a new video game simulation that lets troops recreate actual combat scenarios.

Luke Devore, Pat Maloney, and Brian Libretto, all civilian contractors with Cubic Simulation, brought home an “Innovations in DoD Gaming Award” for a program that uses after-action reports from deployed troops to train Marine squads in critical thinking and evaluation before they ship out.

“One of the pillars of our organization here is innovation,” retired Marine Col. Tom Carricker, site lead for the II Marine Expeditionary Force Battle Simulation Center, said. “How do we take these simulations that are provided and, working with the training audience, come up with new and innovative ways to meet the targets.”

The game itself is similar to many first-person shooter games, said Devore, a lead analyst for Cubic. However, scenes are programmed to match after-action reports received by the department — some only 30 days old. Troops receive a fragmentary order to brief them about their situation, enter the game simulation to execute the mission, and then meet up for the most important part: a “robust discussion” about the decisions that were made and the outcomes, Devore said.

This tactical virtual guided discussion (TVGD) is intended to help troops on the ground think probingly and creatively about actions and outcomes.

“They have a lot of different training venues that focus on tactical skills,” Carricker said. “This is really designed to focus on their mental skills and their cognitive decision-making. This is taking it to another level where now it’s putting it all together.”

And, he said, while many simulations cater to battalion-level leadership, this one is designed with the leaders of the smallest units in mind.

Since this game scenario began to be used in training about six months ago, Devore said, about 1,200 Marines have cycled through the program.

When Marine leadership from other bases heard about it, they encouraged him to enter it for the DoD gaming award at the GameTech 2010 conference, where it beat 13 other contenders to win the prize. And while the 2nd-place simulation cost $80,000 to implement, Devore said proudly, TVGD simply reinvented existing technology and cost nothing extra.

The game has now been made available to the all-Marine bases for training.

“We always share best practices throughout the Marine Corps,” Carricker said.
Devore’s team and Carricker said they are already working on the next simulation game for Marine training: called “Do-Somethings,” it will take the action a step further, building up through simulation and narration to a tactical dilemma, and then allowing Marines to discuss a squad response and put it to action through the game.

That game is about to hit the testing stages, and Devore said he expects to have no shortage of volunteers to help him.

“(The games) have been hugely, popular, and Marines get really exited about them,” he said.

“They get fired up and it’s really neat to watch. There’s lots of eureka moments.”

Source: Award winning video game lets Marines relive real battles | span, style, windowtext - News - Jacksonville Daily News


Extraordinary Member
Unless they hook the soldiers up to the mains... and shock the crap out of them when hit, there's little soldiering experience to be gain playing FPS games, they would be far more use doing real life exercise with laser tag or paintballing. After all the secret is not to train for fake programmed wins, but to train for coping with huge losses where death is an option. The way gamers see war seems like a doddle if it's like games... but clearly thats rubbish as I bet 99% of gamers would **** pants and run for momma if out in a combat zone with real live ammo and enemies shooting at them.

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