Thursday, August 25, 2016

Real Weapons and Video Games?

Video games and gun ranges. Probably not two things you would expect to come together outside of a digital realm. Machine Guns Vegas has designed a firing station that utilizes gaming technology to provide "virtual" experiences using real weapons.

Using video screens and lasers to track ammo, you can play a game with a live weapon. A specialty designed soft box catches the ammo so they don't travel far, and won't damage you, or the equipment. The lasers track the trajectory of the bullet and the game reacts. It's not a true virtual reality experience since you don't wear any fancy headgear and you're not placed in a digital realm. You're playing Call of Duty with a real firearm.

Why should this be on your radar? The company has designed over 750 scenarios and most are for law enforcement and military use. It gives officials an opportunity to train on gun use, and safety, in more applicable situations. Most gun ranges have static targets that are oversized and not representative of the multitude of human bodies. If they are moving targets, it's typically left and right, or back and forth. They don't dodge, duck, or weave behind boxes and walls. By utilizing games, law enforcement can train for real-world scenarios. The quality of their gunman-ship improves.

Company founder Genghis Cohen commented that Nevada has one of the most lenient concealed handgun laws in the country. "[Y]ou can get a concealed carry permit and then pass the shooting test and it’s the first time many people have ever shot a gun. The standards are so low for getting permits." Texas is not all that different. I know a number of people who have never shot a gun before, but they own one. It's just that easy to buy a deadly object. Go fig.

Having these types of training simulations for consumers, law, and military can potentially improve safety standards across the board. Currently the system is only available in Nevada, or if you have a lot of money and want to punk down $100 grand for a basic set-up in your home. It'll be interesting to see if this concept grows over the years, and how much it'll affect future gun ranges, if at all.

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