Epic Games’ ultra popular video game series Gears of War will be licensing its gameplay platform to government contractor Applied Research Associates. The FBI and other U.S. government agencies will be using the platform to train new recruits and employees.
Epic’s Unreal Engine 3, or UE3, will be used to create training tools such as “a multi-player crime scene training simulation” for the FBI. This protocol is part of a new federal government initiative entitled the Unreal Government Network, or UGN. Epic Games is partnering with Virtual Heroes, a simulation/training video game developer.
“We recognize the growing market needs of our government customers and are excited to have Virtual Heroes provide a full spectrum of focused services and support using our game engine technology,” said Epic Games president and board member Dr. Michael Capps. Capps is a former professor at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, Calif. and the head programmer, designer, and producer of the U.S. Army’s popular recruitment video game, America’s Army.
The first installment of Epic Games’ well-known Gears of War series was released in 2006. Gears is only available on the Xbox – and has sold over 5.88 million copies worldwide.
The partnership between Epic Games and Virtual Heroes will cover future development projects for a variety of hardware and software platforms, such as the PS3, the Wii U and PCs and Macs.
“Virtual Heroes is committed to providing world-class support to our licensees to ensure that all UE3 solutions achieve the best possible results across multiple platforms,” said Jerry Heneghan, founder of Virtual Heroes and the director of ARA’s HumanSim product development, in a statement. “Our technical and creative staff is uniquely qualified to provide a new standard of responsive, personalized service to government customers worldwide.”