America's Army Goes Xbox, Now PC
December 4, 2007
WASHINGTON (Army News Service, Dec. 4, 2007) -- When the "America's Army: True Soldiers" game hit the streets in mid November, recruiters across the country held launch events at local stores to capitalize on the excitement of America's Army coming to the Xbox 360. Now the game's creators are hoping to stir up excitement in the PC gaming world.
"America's Army is exploring all platforms that make sense for the America's Army brand. Clearly there are a number of gamers who prefer console gaming to PC gaming and by bringing America's Army on a next-generation engine to the Xbox 360 we hope to spread the Army's message to new players," said Maj. Mike Marty, operations officer for the America's Army Project.
"Both the PC and Xbox 360 versions allow us to foster a large America's Army community where players can use teamwork and Army values to achieve success in their gameplay missions," Maj. Marty said. "These online communities extend beyond mere gameplay as players join in teams and use online forums to discuss their strategies and even the military in general."
The PC version was demonstrated on three laptops at the 2007 Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation and Education Conference in Orlando, Fla., Nov 27 to 29. Show attendees told America's Army representatives that they were extremely impressed with how the game has progressed.
"Soldier response has been tremendous," Maj. Marty said. "They are very impressed with how authentic the game is from the way the weapons work and sound to the realistic training missions to authentic Army equipment, and they have told us that they appreciate that the game incorporates teamwork and Army values.
"The general public opinion has been very similar to the Soldiers'. The game is extremely popular with gamers from around the world. Players have spent more than 200 million hours virtually exploring America's Army, consistently ranking it among the top PC action games played on the Internet worldwide. It has accumulated more than 8.8 million registered players."
The PC action game provides players a virtual portal into the Army, from exploring the development of Soldiers in individual and collective training to their employment in simulated missions in the war on terrorism.
"The game immerses players in progressive individual and collective training environments that highlight key events within Army initial entry training, advanced individual training and professional development training," Maj. Marty said. "The game offers a broad perspective on the Army through the ability to take on different MOSs and Special Forces roles."
In the Xbox 360 game, players immerse themselves in the true Infantry experience of a modern Soldier as they advance through their careers and take on roles such as a Rifleman, Grenadier, Automatic Rifleman and Sniper.
"There are many new and exciting features this game brings to the table, such as state-of-the-art equipment, including a Blue Force Tracker that improves recognition of targets and battlefield awareness for the player," he said. "Additional Intel can be gathered by the Raven UAV and displayed on their portable Blue Force Tracker PDA. Also, AI teammates can communicate Intel with each other and with players. Multiple players can also share Intel via in-game voice-over chat."
Another feature is the ability of teammates to award honor points to other team members who play honorably and jump in when the mission is on the line. As players accumulate honor points, they earn America's Army reward coins that can be redeemed for prizes in the America's Army "Live the Experience" contest that offers unique prizes such as becoming a Golden Knight, a game developer, or a Soldier for a day (http://truesoldiers.americasarmy.com).
"The America's Army team is constantly developing updates for the America's Army: Special Forces (Overmatch) game and has also begun development on America's Army Version 3.0 which will be an entirely new game built on the Unreal 3 game engine," Maj. Marty said.
The next update to the America's Army: Special Forces (Overmatch) game will be released in coming months. Version 3.0 is slated for release in late 2008. No feature information on Version 3.0 has been released yet.
The PC game can be found at www.americasarmy.com and is also available through recruiters and at Army events. The console game is available at all major retailers.
(Edric Thompson serves as an Army intern with Soldiers Media Center.)