America's Army in Competition with Video Games Industry

Decade of PC recruitment tool ended up extremely over budget.

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America's Army in Competition with Video Games Industry
First person shooter and recruitment tool America?s Army now seems to be a significant part of the US Military strategy, after it was revealed that the Government has spent $32.8 million on the project over the last decade.

Gamespot filed a Freedom of Information Act request to the US Government and discovered that the original budget for the free-to-play PC game was $7 million over a five year period. This was back in 2000 - America?s Army was first revealed to the public in 2002.

Despite the modest target, expenditure for the game in its first year actually rounded off at $3,500,000. It ballooned in 2001 to $5,600,000, and annual budgets have fluctuated between $1.3 million and $4 million ever since.

Over the space of ten years, the series has grown to accommodate expansion packs, updates, sequels in America?s Army 3 and spinoffs in Rise of a Soldier on PS2 and True Soldiers on the Xbox 360. While Ubisoft handled the console titles, it appears the Government saved some money in canning the America?s Army 3 development team back in June, instead of paying for the studio?s work.

Further Freedom of Information Act requests were denied on the grounds that ?disclosure of this information is likely to cause substantial harm to the Department of the Army?s competitive position in the gaming industry."

The US Army is competing with the games industry? Seems a tad unfair. But it does look like the series is here to stay.


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