I just saw this story referenced on the Edge website about how Full Spectrum Warrior, a game originally conceived as a training tool for soldiers in the US military who are about to enter an urban warfare environment which was also adapted as a commercial game, is being used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder in soldiers coming back from Iraq. I’m not that big on war games or strategy games, but FSW took the best parts of both into a game that I really enjoyed. The US military didn’t, but I couldn’t give two shits about them (the military itself, not the soldiers; put your angry emails away).

It’s very ironic that a game designed to prepare personnel for the kind of combat that they face in Iraq failed spectacularly in that respect but turned out to be a reasonably successful commercial game, which is in turn being used as a therapeutic tool to treat soldiers who have been traumatised by Iraq. “Not accurate enough” to train them, but apparently realistic enough to trigger painful repressed memories. The most constructive $5 million they’ll ever spend.

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