Arma 3 devs fight against use of in-game footage as war propaganda

Arma 3 developer Bohemia Interactive has spoken out against the use of in-game footage to spread false information, especially about the war in Ukraine.

In a public statement, Bohemia Interactive speaks out against the use of Arma 3 mods intentionally made to look like real war images and presented as authentic.

โ€œThese user-created videos have the potential to go viral and are being shared massively by social media users; sometimes even by various mainstream media or official government institutions around the world,โ€ says Bohemia Interactive in its release.

Arma 3 is set in a futuristic conflict in the year 2035, but Arma 3 is also incredibly popular thanks to its robust modding and customization options. Users have created over 20,000 modes for the game in all sorts of different wars, real and fictional, over many different time periods.

However, Bohemia Interactive is fighting against mods that are deliberately created to look like the war in Ukraine and shared online as real footage. “While it’s flattering that Arma 3 simulates modern conflicts so realistically, we’re certainly not thrilled that it can be mistaken for real combat footage and used as war propaganda,” says Pavel Krizka, public relations manager of Bohmeia Interactive.

Krizka says Bohemia Interactive has tried to combat the proliferation of fake war footage created in Arma 3 by reporting the videos to platform providers like Facebook and YouTube, but says the process is “very inefficient”.

Instead, the team turned to cooperating with major news outlets and fact-checkers like AFP and Reuters as they “have a better reach and ability to effectively combat the spread of false images of news”.

Bohemia Interactive has also released a guide for users to distinguish between in-game videos and real-world images. Bohemia Interactive highlights aspects such as low resolution, shaky camera, dark or nighttime footage, lack of audio and people, and unrealistic vehicles and uniforms as things to look out for when distinguishing fake videos.

Finally, Bohemia Interactive asks users to use gameplay footage responsibly and “refrain from using ‘clickbait’ video titles”, and clearly states that the video is from a video game before posting any online game clips.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine began in February 2022 and has been an ongoing conflict ever since, affecting countless lives.

Matt TM Kim is IGN’s Managing Editor. You can join it @lawoftd.

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