Move to Bring America’s Army Game to High Schools Raises Questions

Given recent criticism that the America’s Army game is being used to recruit children for military service, perhaps the last place you’d expect the Army to take its game is to America’s high schools.

But in a move that’s sure to raise eyebrows, the Army has teamed with non-profit organization Project Lead The Way “to enhance student curriculum by using a variety of Army technologies to promote student interest in the engineering and technical fields.” 

The platform used for the curriculum will, of course, be America’s Army. Col. Casey Wardynski, project originator and director of the game project said:

The U.S. Army is committed to educating today’s youth. We are honored to work with Project Lead The Way to employ our technologies to allow students to explore critical subjects like math, engineering and the sciences in an innovative and hands-on manner.  Encouraging our youth to develop expertise in science and engineering is imperative. The America’s Army Technology Education program provides a unique offering by combining the power of gaming and simulations with real life equipment to create a compelling academic program.

AE: Reading the press release, it looks like the partnership will be doing more than simply dropping the game in students’ laps and saying, “have fun.”  Rather, it appears they‘ve used the game as a backbone for specifically tailored educational software with a pro-military slant.

Via: Water Cooler Games

-Reporting from San Diego, GamePolitics correspondent Andrew Eisen… 

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  1. Alpha 6 says:


      Why dont you blame the UFC Cage Fighting for getting kids involved in violent activities while you’re at it.  Just because your son plays GTA dosent mean he’s going to go off and blow up a car or gun down a cop.  Hell, he’s probably going to live a happier life knowing that he has an outlet for his rage caused by an increasingly angry society.  Dont forget to blame Metal bands for turning our kids into satainists or wrestling for causing kids to reinact favorite moves in the backyard.  If you have a doughter you can blame Barbie and all the other dolls for making women look like objects.  Before you blame the video games look at all the other media that your son is exposed to.  Its more than likley one of those other forms of media is to blame for your son putting a toe out of line.


  2. nightwng2000 says:

    WOW!  Unique idea!  Expose the younger generation to the military while they’re still in school!  Ingenious!

    :: Smacks self several times.  ::

    Oh, wait, this is the REAL world:

    Oh, and let us not forget the multitude of military schools.

    So there!  😛

    Yo Joe!
    He’ll fight for freedom where ever there’s trouble.
    GI Joe is there.

    It’s GI Joe against Cobra the enemy
    Fighting to save the day.
    He never gives up.
    He’s always there,
    Fighting for freedom over land and air

    GI Joe- A real American hero
    GI Joe is there

    GI Joe is the codename for American’s daring, highly trained
    special mission force.
    It’s purpose, to defend human freedom against Cobra-
    a ruthless, terrorist organization determined to rule the world.

    He never gives up.
    He’ll stay til the fight’s won.
    GI Joe will dare.

    GI Joe- A real American hero
    GI Joe


    NW2K Software

    Nightwng2000 has also updated his MySpace page: Nightwng2000 is now admin to the group "Parents For Education, Not Legislation" on MySpace as

  3. Shadow Darkman Anti-Thesis of Jack Thompson says:


    He’s got you there, Dave.



  4. lumi says:

    Can’t be rated worse than M, and they’re not recruiting sub-17s out of high school.  They want the kids about to graduate.

  5. wehrgeist says:

    Utter BULLSHIT. Recruiters don’t get any more or less money for recruiting, it is only a duty rotation.



    Trust is the sound of death.

  6. Tills ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Just wanted to chime in with something. In New Zealand, the military branches have TV ads aimed at teens regularly and a couple years back in my last year of high school, we went to a careers expo and the army featured quite prominintly there. The also had a explosive weapons dude sitting out front by the entrance showing everyone the inside of a missle and its launcher. They also have a few online games, nowhere near the level of AA but still.

    Just funny the different responses between NZ and America. I havn’t heard of any opposition or controversy with the recruitment methods, afaik no-one really cares that its being done or that its targeting teens.

  7. Monte says:

     Well, the criticism in this case tends to be about the methods used by the military for recruitment. I mean talking to students can be one thing, assuming they actually give the students all the facts, the students know well enough what they are signing up for. The reason America’s army gets criticism though is because it doesn’t really give the facts about what the military is like… it’s more like presenting an "ideal" to the youths; their will be those that signed up for the ill-informed ideal but are instead given a harsh reality. Recruiting is fine so long as the would-be soldiers are really getting the true reality of what it means to be a soldier in the military… if they choose to go in then, then it’s their life and their call… 

  8. MrKlorox says:

    But Bush didn’t get the chance to have Afghanistan knit a gigantic mural afghan of a slaughter as it occured. I guess there’s always Jeb in 2012.

  9. Cheese Nips ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    It isn’t to recruit children directly, it’s to get the idea of signing up into their head. when they’re 18, some kids will remember the game and sign up, apparently thinking it’s better then the video game.

  10. GrlGmr says:

    Well, I seem to remember in high school they had military recruiters come in and talk to the seniors around graduation. So I don’t see what the big deal is.

  11. thefremen says:

     This probably should have been done much earlier. It doesn’t make sense anymore because in just a few short months we won’t have Zapp Brannigan as Commander-in-Chief anymore.


    For anyone lost, rememeber how Brannigan defeated the Killbots: "You see, Killbots have a preset kill limit. Knowing their weakness, I sent wave after wave of my own men at them, until they reached their limit and shut down."

  12. DexX ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Uh…  what ESRB rating does America’s Army have?

    So now violent video games are bad and you can’t play them, except when the military-industrial complex wants to use it to indoctrinate America’s youth into thinking military service will be "fun".

    Wow, hypocrisy and evil in one neat bundle.  There’s military efficiency for you.

  13. Acopolo says:

    Yeah,Recrutiers dont make enough money for their jobs,They ONLY get paided when they recruit someone,And it’s only about 20$ per person,But its if you told them to kiss off,you wouldnt give bush the satisfaction of buying Condoleza rice edible underwear,I am the family member of a soldier that was murdered by our current failure called geogre bush,

  14. Waffles says:

    Eh whatev….

    Its not like the Army didn’t try to get high school kids to recruit early before the game. (I know recruiters LOVED coming to my high school, for reasons I think I can imagine why)

  15. GRIZZAM PRIME says:

    It’s funny that you say that, since some old guy just threw the senate at me…


    -Remember kids, personal responsibility is for losers! For information on games and psychology, look up: Jonathan Freedman(2002)Block & Crain(2007) Just to name a few…

  16. jkdjr25 ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Believe it or not there are people who join the Armed Forces because of love of country. They want to serve the people in what they view to be one of the best ways possible. The Army Corps. of Engineers is also one of the best trained groups in the world in regards to their field.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Given my feelings on the backwards nature of America’s aversion to anything sexual in culture, I actually agree with that.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Well, the game industry is treated as an exception, so that doesn’t mean much. At least, not when it comes to politicians who don’t give a fuck about anyone else’s opinion/desire but their own.

  19. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    It is called parenting.  You  take things like video games away from your kid if you dont want them playing them.  Troll or not, too many parents dont realize this.

  20. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    And there are no laws against the movie industry with adult ratings either.  So no chance of that flying.

  21. Anonymous says:

    I’d say that, but Jack has a tendency to lie, as well as try to add to his score card of things he’s done. Also, I’m sure he occasionally forgets where he was five minutes ago, let alone five years ago.

  22. Anonymous says:

    You just don’t get the message, and I really cannot be bothered to explain it to you again.

    Go learn something for once.

  23. Anonymous says:

    Really? To me that’s just wrong. I don’t watch the cartoons they show TV anymore, outside of Metalocalypse, on account of the rest of them suck.

  24. hayabusa75 says:

    You see it in the mags, too.  Game Informer typically has around three military recruitment ads in each issue.

    "There is no sin except stupidity." – Oscar Wilde

  25. Anonymous says:

    [i]Hello!  As a concerned mother of a son, this is why I don’t like video games.[/i]

    Not sure I follow you there.

     [i]They make people do extreme things they wouldn’t do otherwise.[/i]

    Oh come now, you know that’s not true.

     [i]I agree with Mr Thompson[/i]

    Famous last words…

    [i]video games should be banned for children.[/i]

    Well, thanks for you input. Fortunately for those like me, we live in a democracy, where the majority of people disagree with you. Because if they didn’t, well, laws would’ve been put in place a long time ago. It’s not like we have Emperor Palpatine controlling everything. 😛

  26. Insanejedi says:

    I’m just here to say that before you start attacking this for the Army brainwashing our kids. Americas Army’s training program before you actually get to play at all actually teaches you things like first aid and medcal experties that are not covered in your traditional CPR training, so I can see that being used, but the Special Forces training rely’s more or memorization and specialized skills so I don’t see how that can be useful.

  27. kurisu7885 (can't log in) says:

    SO there’s been an epidemic of people jumping motorcycles off the tallest building in Los Angelas with no parachute and living as well as being able to ride away?

    Because if there has been I certainly haven’t heard about it.

  28. violent video game enthusiast says:

    internet where everyone is judged by the idiocy of there statements and there inability to think of a cool name.

    on a side note:Bad troll is bad

  29. Anonymous says:

    I was on ABC World News Tonight with Peter Jennings five years ago about this problem. Glad to see you finally woke up, Dennis. Jack Thompson

    But, if that’s true, then why is the problem still around five years later? Shouldn’t your mere presence have put a stop to it? I’m confused. Must be the games I play. Damn those addicting games. Damn them to Hell.

  30. Haggard says:

    The people in this thread are opposed to it because it’s the army using our beloved games.

    You’re opposed because it’s your beloved army using games.

  31. ZippyDSMlee says:

    The problem is barb moralists have blamed societies woes on entertainment, dancing,film,music TV,comics even books so media dose not effect the masses in any way in fact the media changes to suit wha tthe masses want out of entertainment because its imaginary play for adults and adults have varied tastes.

    (FYI barb has not been taged a troll………………………….. yet :P)

    I is fuzzy brained mew =^^=
    (in need of a bad overhaul)

  32. Secktgecko says:

    You’d be giving a reason for jack "douchebag" thompson to masturbate and cause trouble,The so called concern mother is another troll,Probably jack or one of his gay sex friends goons.

  33. ZippyDSMlee says:

    Protesters should understand the game is poorly deved and and is hell to play, its a deterant!


    Gaming is a new way for the army to recruit(they should branch out more into film and music as well, do them in a old satire style off the 40/50 info films ^_~), it might sound bad or silly but they HAVE to recruit and thus need tools to do it with so the whole thing is blowen out of proportion…a draft would be a must worse situation then again it might keep the public focused….

    I is fuzzy brained mew =^^=
    (in need of a bad overhaul)

  34. Erik ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I’m going to pretend for a moment that you aren’t some random internet troll.


    But I’m wondering if you have any soft of facts to back up your statement of video games supposed mind control proporties?  Furthermore why should only games be banned and not movies or music when multiple studies have shown that the video game industry is leauges ahead of those two industries in keeping adult material out of children’s hands.

  35. Andrew Eisen says:

    Might want to rub the sleep from your own eyes, Thompson.  This story (written by me, by the way) is just one in a long line of stories at GamePolitics covering the controversy surrounding America’s Army.


    Andrew Eisen

  36. Barb1 says:

    Hello!  As a concerned mother of a son, this is why I don’t like video games.  They make people do extreme things they wouldn’t do otherwise.  I agree with Mr Thompson, video games should be banned for children.

    God Bless!  Barb.

  37. kurisu7885 (can't log in) says:

    Let me guies,s now you’re expecting an outbreak of Youtube videoes of peopel takign sledgehammers to their game consoles, or at least least expecting MR McCauley to shut down his site.

  38. kurisu7885 (can't log in) says:

    A few times throughout the year the army, navy and marines would set up a tables in my high school’s cafe to try and recrcuit people old enough.

    Yes NOW that a video game might be used there’s a problem?


    Thompson, I pose that question to you too.

  39. Magic Taco (soon to be game politics member) says:

    Jack Thompson quote= EPIC FAIL! 

    Really, I would’nt think the army would just let anyone in if even they used their "video games",advertisements or that false truth of getting your college degree or pay when you first join,They wont even except people who have health or mental conditions,Not even someone with scoliois,Let alone there better off sticking to hanging around malls and college centers than trying to recruit an innocent person to die for now reason, Bush makes money off soldiers who die for us,No Offense to anyone in here that is serving the army or anything,As i have relatives that are serving overseas.

  40. Erik ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    What problem?  The military has been using High School recruitments long before there were even video games.  Does ROTC ring a bell?  Really this is nothing new

  41. jbtjbtjbt says:

    I was on ABC World News Tonight with Peter Jennings five years ago about this problem.  Glad to see you finally woke up, Dennis.  Jack Thompson

  42. "..." says:

    So…why exactly would anyone want to join the army if they were allowed to "explore critical subjects like math, engineering and the sciences"? I’m sure you could get a more lucrative (and less dangerous) job as a straight engineer or biomedical scientist.

  43. Anonymous says:

    Obviously, you have only seen enlisted soldiers then. Meet an officer. My father went to West Point to go from a poor mexican kid to making $200,000 a year. I plan on going to West Point as well, but that’s for the experience and training as well as an engineering degree. If I make it out alright after 5 years, I may become an engineer and i’ll be making $100,000 easily by then.

  44. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Making a decent living at my main job, and running a business, and donating extra money that I don’t need for expenses and past my saving plan to different organizations to help better qualify of life for people who are in the lower class.

    Out of all the people I have met who are out of the military after servering, none of them have EVER made $100,000, and most of them don’t even make $60,000.  It sucks, because the marines and air force guys deserve big money for what they did.  I don’t know much about what the Navy guys did…  Army guys just get the raw end of the stick all of the time.  Pretty much being the first ones in to get raped, then last ones out to clean up.  Though there are specialized departments withing the army like the engineers that are smart, but that isnt the majority of who goes into the army.

  45. jdun says:

    You are a moron. Tell me, what are you doing with your life other then whine and a parasite to society?


    Yeah Army people are stupid. Stupid enough to make six figures after leaving the military. Yep they are stupid alright.

  46. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Yup, and that is why they have the reputation of having stupid people in the Army…  They try to take advantage of whoever they can though, not just people with no chance of higher education.

  47. Anonymous says:

    That might very well be, but doesen’t really negate my point. I’ve got a principal problem with the army going to schools – allthough it probably is true: The Army’s principal demographic is, well, young, impressionable thugs, and such people would join it anyway. That, and underprivileged kids who see no other way to get to college or otherwise leave their miserable situation.

  48. DarkSaber says:

    People might be more inclined to pay attention to you more if you ever said anything other than facepalm or falcon punch.


    This is MY fence, find your own to sit on.

  49. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Yeah…  You can go cuddle with Bush, Cheney, and McCain now since it seems you are comfortable with them.

  50. BlackIce says:

    Just like every other State and Paramilitary Force known to mankind.

    ~You Could Be Mine, But You’re Way Out Of Line..~

  51. shady8x says:

    The only reason we are at war with faceless villains is because you choose not to look up pictures of their dead bodies, which is understandable… I think most people choose to do that…

    We did not invade for the moral betterment of those people, that is just a ridiculous statement. Here watch these youtube clips and be educated… This are clips where they tell it like it is…

    this is a statement by Cheney –

    this is is by Mccain –

    There was a link between 9/11 and Saddam, one of the main stated goals of Osama was to raise the price of oil to or above 100 bucks… Iraq had oil we could get… seems like a link to me…

    Obviosuly we could have saved lives by not fighting wars… and that is what we should have done…

    Oil companies are not making excuses, they are making the same amount per dollar as they made 10 years ago. They are just selling more oil to more nations(thank you clinton for helping china and india…) and they have less oil then the demand… so they are getting from more expensive sources and ending up with the same profit margins…

    Oh they should certainly not get any more bailouts or tax breaks… but they aren’t shortchanging us if thats what you mean…



  52. Shadow Darkman Anti-Thesis of Jack Thompson says:


    "The U.S. Army is committed to killing off today’s youth.

    Doesn’t sound implausible."

    Because what you said was so stupid, that no other kind of FacePalm could do justice to the stupidity of your words, you have forced me to perform… AN ALL-MIGHTY FACEPALM!!!

    Falcon… PUNCH!!! *Falcon Punches his own forehead*



  53. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Hahahaha, I…. hahahahhaha…  I cant even type…. hahahahaha…..   okay, let me breathe… whoa… okay… hahaha…    oh man…. you are the man, haha.  props to you.  where is the donate $100 to this user for a hard laugh button at?

  54. DarkSaber says:

    That’s ok. Putting down inbreeding macaque monkeys like yourself is a hobby of mine, don’t feel too bad.

  55. jkdjr25 ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Ooh. I have been wounded to the quick. Really, I just don’t see how I can possiblly come back from having my intelligence insulted. I may just end it all. *sarcasm mode off*



  56. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    You want me to bring it full circle on why I said it?

    We are in a war with faceless villains, the only known villain has not been captures after over 7 years, we lose countless souls because of invading Iraq, and though morally for the betterment of those people it may pay out in the long run, there was NO link between 9/11 and Saddam, if you know of one show it.  All in all, we could have saved many lives by not dealing with this.

    All of this has caused excuses for the oil companys to jack up prices, which in turn is hurting our economy when oil companies are making record profits while there is less gas being used year by year.  I say instead of the tax payers paying to keep these companies alive, the oil companies should be forced to pay for it.  That last bail out what what? $3,000 per US citizen I believe?

  57. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    It is the government that divided us.  I support the troops, I support our country, I am far from supporting our government.  Too many old bats that don’t understand the world.  Granted, they may understand a lot of things better than me, but electronics/computers, how oil isnt even needed anymore, any other modern stuff or scientific things that they definitely didn’t learn in school back in the day.

    Where should be start Mr. Politician, how about the fact that other than hybrids, gas mileage hasnt changed at all for over 30 years.

  58. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    I found it funny too…  Mainly because there is a town near me where there are a lot of people having as many kids as possible to get more money from the government, and a few of them are in the Army… 

    On the sad side though… because the parents are too lazy to get jobs, one of the kids died serving.

  59. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Yeah…  I have buddies in the Marines, Air Force, Navy…  And I know some idiots from high school that went into the Army.  So as much as I want to say not all of them are stupid from the people I know.  The smart ones went to other branches, while the not so smart ones went to the Army.  Not to be a jerk, that is just from the people I know.

  60. Anonymous says:

     Wow that jimmy retarded comment was a little out there.  I think most parents and people who go into the armed forces really do it for a more structured enviroment. Thats the reason I wanted to get into the Air Force, or navy, but thats another story.

  61. DarkSaber says:

    Well, the Army trying to recruit people straight out of school is nothing new, all that’s really changed is that their methods appear to be getting increasingly more insidious.

  62. Sebastian says:

    I think this quote by the late, great Bill Hicks describes the situation perfectly:

    "ANYBODY stupid enough to join the military should be allowed in. Period."

    But still, I find it very… creepy for the Army to recruit fresh meat right out of schools. Kids during puberty aren’t exactly the most rational of human beings, after all.

  63. Anonymous ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    Ouch… wait, did they say educating or killing off? hummm

    The U.S. Army is committed to killing off today’s youth.

    Doesn’t sound implausible.

  64. Anonymous says:

    The armed forces have had ads and crap in high schools and somehow kids have managed to avoid the siren’s song of shipping out to god knows where to kill god knows who. Unless you’re ignorant enough to believe in the magic brainwashing murder simulator theory of video games I don’t see much of a difference with this.

  65. DavCube (not logged in) says:

    Oh, please… this wouldn’t work. If high school kids think they want to join the army when they turn 18, they’re going to do it with or without the help of a video game.

  66. DarkSaber says:

    Your forget they also try to brainwash parents into thinking it’s a GOOD thing that little Jimmy Retard joins the army to fight for freedom and oil in another country.

    And some of them buy into it, right up until little Jimmy takes a bullet to the face.

    Then again, what other use is there for the working class retard babies people are busy squirting out?

  67. Anonymous says:

    Wierdest part of that article "Given recent criticism that the America’s Army game is being used to recruit children for military service,"    

    I understand AA is used by the army as a tool to try and recruit more members into the arm forces. But if your children really feel the need to join the Armed forces cause of a Video game i do believe you failed as parent.s

  68. Shadow Darkman Anti-Thesis of Jack Thompson says:

    DO IT!!! DO IT!!! DO IT!!! DO IT!!! DO IT!!! DO IT!!! DO IT!!! DO IT!!! DO IT!!! DO IT!!! DO IT!!!



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