Games are not just for fun: Russian developers can get government support to create drone control simulators
According to experts, operators of real drones could be trained on such simulators.
The government is considering the idea of creating a fund to support developers of simulators to control “drones and similar equipment”, informs publication “Kommersant”. Experts believe that simulators can become part of the training programs for operators of real unmanned vehicles.
According to the publication, the Ministry of Digital Transformation at the end of February sent a report to Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Chernyshenko with proposals to support the development of Russian video game developers. Among them is a proposal to stimulate the production of video game simulators in the Russian Federation. It is planned to allocate funds through a separate fund.
A source familiar with the development of video game support initiatives confirmed that the issue of simulators was discussed, but its current status is unknown.
The Ministry of Digital Development declined to comment, citing the confidentiality of the report.
According to Vyacheslav Makarov, ex-Director of Wargaming Product, any established game studio will be able to develop a drone control simulator in a short time, since the drone control panel is essentially a simple game joystick.
However, as other experts point out, the key issue is the input device. It is not difficult and inexpensive to develop a simulation game for controlling a drone or UAV with a game joystick, but it will not work to acquire real control skills on it. Another thing, the expert added, is if the simulator is adapted to a specific device control panel, but this is already a long and expensive process. Also, such a product can no longer be called a game, since it is intended for a narrow circle of consumers.
Ekaterina Perederko, CEO of Eagle Dynamics Studios, says it takes about three to five years to develop a simulation of a single aircraft whose control is close to reality, depending on the scale of the project. She also notes that drone or UAV operator simulators will most likely not be popular with ordinary consumers, but will become software for training people in their respective specialties.
Nikita Danilov, CEO of Fly Drone, believes that manned aircraft simulators are a huge help in practical skills and should become an obligatory part of the training program for UAV operators.