Play2Improve is a new company, based within Abertay University, which is focusing on using games technology to help people learn. The company’s first project is an online coaching service called FPS Trainer.
FPS Trainer offers players of all ability levels the chance to learn the basic skills needed to play First-Person-Shooter games online against other players. Rather than a simple tutorial or basic introduction, FPS Trainer promises a combination of Artificial Intelligence and human coaching, from leading players such as Paul McGarrity (or astz!), a former Unreal Tournament world champion.
According to astz!: “FPS Trainer is an opportunity for me to convey the complex layers of strategy that aren’t always obvious or available to new players of online FPS games, in an intuitive and understandable way. It’s a chance to teach the new generation of gamers the right ways to practice and how to compete effectively”.
Which makes sense. One thing which puts many people off playing FPS games online, is the hordes of players who have devoted hundreds of hours to playing the damn game – and learning exciting new language to call you once they’ve killed you for the 80th time.
The initial release of FPS Trainer is delivered via web browser and comes complete with Facebook integration, allowing you to organise matches and post your ongoing results.
The service will be launched next week as part of the NEoN digital arts festival, with live exclusive previews taking place on both Thursday and Friday next week, alongside the two day conference.
If you want to see FPS Trainer in action, head along to the University of Abertay’s Centre of Excellence.
We’ve posted a whole bunch of questions off to Matt and astz! so brace yourselves for an interview early next week.