Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Full Spectrum Controversy?

The Saint Petersburg Times is reporting that the Army got "out-gamed" in the development of THQ's "Full Spectrum Warrior", and that the Army is not satified with the end result.

I'm actually playing this game right now, and, as a former infantryman, I've found it to be pretty good. By no means is it a complete simulation of urban combat. But, it does do a pretty good job of teaching squad MOUT tactics outside of buildings...street fighting, if you will. So far, the game hasn't taken me inside the buildings which is another facet of urban warfare that is hard to train. The Rainbow Six games did a pretty good job with that.

The Xbox disk is supposed to have the actual "army" version of the game, but I haven't tried it yet. But, I can see this as a useful tool. There is no substitute for tough, realistic training, but MOUT is hard to train on. There aren't that many MOUT facilities in the Army.

What I find interesting about the article is that it quotes a Lieutenant Colonel at Fort Benning (I presume at the infantry center in Building snore...err...Four). He doesn't seem to think that its a good tool. However, this guy isn't the target audience. He's probably in his forties and, if he's like most infantry LTCs that I've known, doesn't play games. The real target audience for this game is 20 year old squad leaders who have grown up playing games. I wonder what they think.

Remember the Aviation and Armor communities have been using simulators for years, and they get good results. The "net" generation will figure out how to use tools like Full Spectrum Warrior.


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