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As the Commercial Gaming Market Expands, a Growing Number of Products will Become Useful to Military Customers and the Defence Industry
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Commercial gaming finds its origins in military wargaming in the form of commercial tabletop games. Since then, the market has evolved and technology has moved from physical tabletop games to the use of computer technology. War games are a form of rehearsing an operation on a grand scale or a manner of witnessing possible courses of action. Officers give orders to pieces on a map to mimic what would happen in real life. For example, during the pre-war period of World War II, the US Navy ruled out its defence of the Philippines based on information gained from gaming. The market continues to grow and has begun to feed back into the defence industry through the development of gaming engines that allow the generation of training products and the utilisation of commercial games that have been found to be beneficial to defence training and simulation (T&S).This Frost & Sullivan research service focuses on commercial gaming in defence T&S. Within the T&S market, commercial games have traditionally been used for wargaming and as constructive simulation tools. As the commercial gaming market has outpaced the defence industry in terms of the production of gaming technology, game engines have increasingly been adopted by the industry to aid in the development of simulations such as Epic Games’ Unreal Engine. Game engines are one of the most significant uses of commercial gaming within defence – mainly for their ease of use and ability to function on a wide range of platforms. The engines are used to form the basis of simulation systems. Typically, commercial gaming companies do not target an entry into the defence industry (Bohemia Interactive Simulation and Improbable, for instance); instead, they enter the space on the back of commercial success as their products are found to be useful for defence applications (Slitherine Software and the UK’s Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, for example).The study defines the 3 strategic imperatives that are impacting commercial gaming in defence T&S. It also discusses the trends that are influencing demand for T&S solutions and the effects of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on commercial gaming in defence. Some of the key trends include the adoption of COTS solutions and the growing focus on asymmetric and hybrid warfare. Concepts such as the evolution of wargaming, the adoption of gaming software for training purposes, and the use of commercial games to maintain readiness amidst COVID-19 restrictions are examined. The study goes on to profile Programmes of Notice (the US DARPA’s Gamebreaker and the UK’s Ministry of Defence—Fight Club, for example) and Companies of Notice (Improbable and BISim, to name a few). A technology analysis is also part of the research service, and it covers blockchain and IoT, among others. In conclusion, the study makes growth opportunity recommendations that participants in this space can leverage to further establish themselves.
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