Los Angeles-based 'serious game' technology firm Hexagon Interactive has announced that it has received funding from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR) and the Army Research Institute (ARI-Ft Benning) to develop mediation tools supporting a Joint Task Force (JTF) training program.
Hexagon indicted that the objective is to develop software with the ability to support a JTF and component training event which supports an effects-based approach in the face of inconvenient but realistic influences and interrelationships.
"The overall objective of the Hexagon effort is to develop one or more Joint Task Force training programs that are mediated by a decision training software tool called Cyberwar XXI," says Joseph Miranda, VP Design and Analysis for Hexagon. "Cyberwar XXI depicts modern conflict from prewar through postwar counter-insurgency operations. The first scenario deals with Iraq and the ME region."
Miranda is responsible for two parallel development tracks: The AFOSR deliverable, Cyberwar XXI, includes a fully functioning Joint Task Force educational computer game that enables negotiations, collaboration and coordination in a competitive environment. The multiplayer software will run on commonly available PC hardware. The ARI deliverable includes a blueprint for one or more educational courses mediated by a ground component version of Cyberwar XXI.
"Understanding of Joint capabilities needs to encompass Combat Arms, Combat Support, Combat Service Support, Reserve and National Guard components," said Miranda. "The Cyberwar XXI tool emphasizes PMESII (political, economic, social, information etc.) and DIME (diplomatic etc.) effects. The tool uses advanced AI developed by Hexagon to simulate the behaviors of player entities as they negotiate in order to accomplish both their own Service's and the Commander's goals."
Hexagon indicated that the Air Force iteration of the new software is expected to be delivered around Christmas 2006, and a ground component version by 2008.