FORT LEAVENWORTH, Kan. -- To help enhance its computer-based games for training efforts, the U.S. Army will bring together about 150 of its best Virtual Battlespace 2, or VBS2, players and developers from around the country from Feb. 23-25.
TRADOCAca,!a,,cs National Simulation Center and the U.S. Army Program Executive Office for Simulation, Training and Instrumentation (PEO STRI) will host the VBS2 Government UsersAca,!a,,c Conference at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The event allows VBS2 users and developers to share best practices with the rest of the community, attend tutorials on VBS2 and two other game-based training tools (Bilateral Negotiation and Tactical Language), and communicate with other members of the gaming community of practice.
VBS2 is a commercial game-based training platform that blends a user-friendly, immersive environment with scenario editors, after-action review and a powerful development suite. To help train company and smaller units, the U.S. Army fielded the first-person shooter software and hardware to more than 50 Active, Reserve and National Guard Battle Command Training Centers (BCTC), TRADOC institutions and other selected locations. VBS2 provides a platform for training Soldiers on multiple tasks and mission rehearsal.
Presenters at the conference will include representatives from Centers of Excellence at Fort Knox, Ky. and Fort Sill, Okla.; BCTCs at Fort Lewis, Wash., Fort Hood, Texas, and U.S. Army Europe; and the U.S. Marine Corps.
The speakers will discuss innovative uses of VBS2 for training in operational units and at academic institutions. The conference also will include demonstrations of scenario and terrain development techniques as well as system interoperability, opportunities to exchange ideas and training insights. Additionally, Col. Paul E. Funk II, deputy commander of the Combined Arms Center-Training, will discuss the future of Army gaming and how it will help Soldiers adapt to changing requirements.
Registration for the VBS2 Government Users Conference is open through Feb. 19, at https://ssl.peostri.army.mil/CEMS/Event.do'method=view&eventId=473.
Anyone interested in using VBS2 to support training or gaming is invited to attend. Contractors, industry representatives and foreign military representatives must be sponsored by PEO STRI or TCM Gaming. Fort Lewis communications personnel will also provide an opportunity to participate through Defense Connect Online.
The VBS2 Government UsersAca,!a,,c Conference is a follow-up to a Gaming Kaizen meeting held in early December at Fort Leavenworth, Kan. At that idea-sharing event, gaming users and trainers from the Army, Marine Corps, Army Reserve and other organizations discussed ideas for enhancing the use of VBS2 as a training tool and the planned rollout of VBS2 Lite, a modified version of VBS2 that Soldiers will be able to download and use anywhere. The new software, which will be discussed at the conference, is expected to be available later this year. VBS2 Lite is intended to allow Soldiers to become familiar with VBS2 training capabilities and controls, as well as allow several Soldiers to train small-unit tactics simultaneously by connecting computers together via a switch.
Based at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., the Combined Arms Center-Training delivers training programs, products and services to leaders and units in support of Army readiness to conduct full-spectrum operations in any environment. To learn more about the Combined Arms Center-Training, visit www.leavenworth.army.mil, or visit them on Facebook and Twitter.
Headquartered in Orlando, Fla., the U.S. Army PEO STRI executes an annual budget of more than $3 billion. In addition to providing interoperable training and testing solutions and program management, PEO STRI provides life cycle support for the ArmyAca,!a,,cs most advanced training systems around the world. PEO STRI is dedicated to putting the power of simulation into the hands of our warfighters.