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The Army is rolling out a gaming system called Operation Overmatch that soldiers can use to test virtual versions of gear and operation concepts that could be implemented in the future. (Credit: U.S. Army photo)

The Army is rolling out a new gaming system, called Operation Overmatch, that soldiers can use to test virtual versions of gear and operation concepts that could be implemented in the future.

"Gaming is a tremendous medium to connect soldiers to the concept," said Lt. Col. Brian Vogt with the United States Army Capabilities Integration Center. "Gaming is not just for entertainment anymore, now it is for experimenting."

The Army's Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center's Software Engineering Directorate's Army Game Studio is coordinating with Army Capabilities Integration Center to develop Operation Overmatch, which is part of the Early Synthetic Prototyping (ESP) program. The ESP process is a set of tools that enable soldiers to inform technology development and acquisition decisions by designing and assessing emerging technologies in a game environment.

Operation Overmatch, which has been in development for about a year, is still in the test phase, and the first 100 participants were hand-selected. The beta test was scheduled to open in October.

Operation Overmatch's audience includes soldiers across the Army, including all ranks, all military occupational specialties, active duty, National Guard, Army Reserve and cadets. Department of the Army civilians, members of academia and industry partners will also be invited to participate. Eventually, the game could be available to all the armed services, as well as international partners and allies.

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