Robots vs Reality: Machine Warfare Is Closer Than You Might Think
If current trends in national and indeed global politics are anything to go by, then we should all be gearing up for a big ol' war any time soon. I mean, hardly a week seems to pass without someone somewhere swinging their rootin' tootin' military member around for all to see.
Unfortunately, it's more than likely we will end up spending the next couple of decades locked in a deadly eternal battle. So it's a great thing then that through video games we have such a good idea of what our future war torn dystopia will look like.
And it seems there is no better game at predicting our nightmarish future than the forward thinking Titanfall series. The original game saw a futuristic world in which humans (or Pilots) did battle alongside giant mechanised robot suits (or Titans) over various post apocalyptic outer space colonies. The action was fast paced, frantic and obviously great fun as a result, especially in multiplayer mode, and it was one of the games of the year in 2014.
Two years on, and with Titanfall 2 now here, Mountain Dew have released exclusive in-game reward access so that you, TheLADbible reader, can enhance your robot killing experience even further. Hooray! Take a look at the bottom of this article for full deets.
Now you may think 'I love games like Titanfall 2 but, come on, this sort of bonkers stuff would never happen in real life'. Well, according to former US special forces soldier Lawrence Nantes, these types of mechanised murder machines 'already exist, it's just not mainstream yet.'
Lawrence is now vice president of global risk company that specialises in 'risk crisis and disaster management'. Essentially, they are the guys that governments go to when they need a problem solved in the most hostile of environments in the world right now, so he is pretty clued up about the most cutting edge technologies available to the military. But I mean, really? Titanfall is real already? It's a (sort of) yes from Lawrence: "DARPA (US military tech research nerds) have already developed both autonomous and exoskeleton forms of machine, but to my knowledge they have only been used in testing so far."
Credit: PA Images
O.K, well that's both scary and amazing in equal measure. But testing is one thing, it can take years for these things to come about. How long till we see this in battle? Lawrence says: "Within the next 10 years, if you see the US involved in a conflict in that kind of area you will see them being deployed, or at least fire tested." O.K, so literally by the time Titanfall 6 comes, this type of narrative may no longer be fiction after all.
But how would these robots and armoured suits be used? Lawrence explains: "Where we have robots as opposed to humans inside, that's for being drawing enemy fire, carrying stuff and being battering rams.
"The machine could go out in the open, have a look around and the [technology] would be able to tell whoever is controlling it just where the enemy fire is coming from." If that doesn't sound advanced enough as it is, Lawrence claims the machines will be controlled close by infantry using an 'Oculus Rift' style virtual reality goggles system, so the soldier would see what the robot saw and control movement using his head or hand gestures.
So what about the human controlled Titanfall style suits? Well, according our man in the know, they will not need to be huge and cumbersome as Titans: "There's no reason for a human to be inside a tank, we can make tanks self driving just like Google are making cars self driving. Modern warfare doesn't even need tanks that much anymore, we are now in what we call '4th Generation Asymmetric Warfare', which is more inside cities and at close quarters."
Lawrence tells me that, when attacking a stronghold, the odds are stacked in the defender's favour three to one. But, by wearing these almost bulletproof exoskeletons, a soldier would increase his chances of successfully taking an enemy base to evens. That's the coolest use of maths I've ever witnessed.
So, it sounds like everything in Titanfall becoming military reality is actually more likely than Leicester City winning the league (oh, wait...). However, one thing that always seems unrealistic is the way you can take gunshots and still live. Well, says Lawrence, even that is being addressed...
Credit: PA Images
"We use TCCC, or Tactical Critical Combat Care, which means our medics are really, really good. As you soon as a soldier gets shot we call a medivac and within minutes you're under treatment.
"It's what we call a force multiplier. A soldier knows that he can exert himself harder because he knows that if he gets shot he will receive the best treatment right away."
So not only will the future of war literally have giant robots you control with 3D goggles and bulletproof exoskeletons, but survival rates from battlefields will also be more akin to your average FPS game. This is information I'm struggling to even compute. Seriously nuts.
And, before I forget, to unlock in-game rewards such early access to Ronin Titan, Dew Warpaint Titan or Pilot Execution, just head over to the gamer hub and enter DOTHEDEW144. Easy.
WORDS BY: @WILLIAMWASTEMAN
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