The creators of military simulator Arma 3 has offered some top tips on how to tell the difference between the game and real life.
If you’re not into hardcore military simulations you’ve probably never heard of Arma 3, but there’s a good chance you’ve probably seen clips of it without realising, as it’s constantly being mistaken for real world footage.
Ever since it was released in 2013, news outlets around the world have been mistaking it for the real thing, since it’s not only extremely realistic but the mod community around it is very active.
The second the Russian invasion of Ukraine began the game was being used by supporters on both sides to spread misinformation, and developer Bohemia Interactive is fed up of it.
You might think it impossible for a game, especially one as old as this, to be mistaken for real life but it happens constantly on social media, sometimes by accident and sometimes because people are purposefully trying to pass it off as real.
Bohemia’s Pavel Křižka has recited a lengthy list of tell-tale signs, to tell the difference between fantasy and reality, but the most obvious is that Arma 3 isn’t very good at people, so look out for them and if a scene seems like it should have someone walking around then that’s immediately suspicious.
Peculiarly low resolution videos are also a sign that it’s not real, as well as an overly shaky camera and the events taking place at night – both of which are used to hide the game’s relatively low level of detail.
‘While it’s flattering that Arma 3 simulates modern war conflicts in such a realistic way, we are certainly not pleased that it can be mistaken for real-life combat footage and used as war propaganda,’ wrote Křižka.
‘We would like to ask the players and content creators of Arma 3 to use their game footage responsibly. When sharing such materials, please refrain from using ‘clickbait’ video titles, and always state clearly that the video originated from a video game and is not depicting real-life events.’
Arma 3 isn’t the only game that’s been mistaken for real-life, as the myth of the Ghost of Kyiv gained traction because of fake footage created in the game Digital Combat Simulator, which was also originally published in 2013 and has a sizeable mod community behind it.
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