If there’s any single game engine that defines this console generation, it’s probably Epic’s Unreal Engine. It’s been licenced by just about every single game developer in existence, and is utilised for many of this gen’s most beloved games – including Arkham Asylum and its sequel, the Mass Effect series, Gears of War, Mortal Kombat, Mirror’s Edge and even things like Kinect Adventures and Zumba Fitness.
Its latest licensee, curiously, is the FBI- and a host of other US government agencies.
They’ll be using the software kit to develop games that it can use for training purposes, says the BBC. This makes Unreal Engine 3 a perfect fit, because in the real world everything is brown and grey and people look like tree stumps with muscles. A little more seriously, Unreal Engine 3 will allow them to create "virtual multiplayer crime scene[s] in which its agents can carry out training simulations," along with other uses like
- US army medics practicing their skills on an anaesthesiology training application
- Weapons researchers using the engine as a "visualisation tool"
While government agencies are looking more and more towards gaming fro training purposes, it seems their terrorist counterparts are using games for communication instead. It’s not the first – and probably won’t be the last – time governments have looked to gaming. First person shooter America’s Army – the last game of which also used Unreal Engine 3 – has been used by the US military as a recruitment tool.