On the computer screen in front of you, an aircraft carrier steams ahead in the twilight in a darkened ocean. In its tow a fighter jet armed to the hilt with smart bombs and sidewinder missiles prepares to fuel up and take off. When they're depicted on television news programs, bombing campaigns over Yugoslavia eerily resemble a video game, though that shouldn’t be surprising. During the war in Kosovo, TV networks used war simulation games to show what was going on beyond their cameras reach. The war was real but the footage was virtual.

Television networks and hardcore gamers aren't the only ones who know about simulated war games, the United States military is also adapting to what seems to be the next evolution in war, using the tools in these games for detailed and accurate battlefield recreations in the training of new troops. As computing power increases, combat sims become increasingly realistic, allowing for richer settings and more detailed plane models. While nothing on a computer screen can match the intensity and excitement of live combat, the following games are truly the next best thing.

Part 1
Real War
Part 2
Jane's F/A-18
Part 3
Fleet Command
Part 4
Ghost Recon

War Games: "A brief look at how technology will affect the future of combat" is the intellectual property of Mr. Christopher H. Yarbrough. Mr. Yarbrough may be reached anytime via E-Mail, Phone (352-846-5582), AIM (ChrizTheStampede), or ICQ (953921).
A brief list of sources may be found here.