The U.S. Air Force Levels Up Recruitment Efforts -- Through a Sony PlayStation VR Game

The Military Organization Targets Group Already Predisposed to Adventure

Published On
Jul 12, 2017

Editor's Pick

The U.S. Air Force has found a fun new way to level up its recruitment efforts -- through a Sony Playstation game.

Working with GSD&M, its 17-year agency of record, the organization has created an immersive VR title, "Air Force Special Ops: Nightfall." Downloadable for free on, it puts players in the shoes of a Special Ops airman, where they get to participate in a H.A.L.O. (High Altitude Low Opening) freefall, attend jump school, practice parachute control and night landing and participate in simulated combat missions. After players complete each challenge, the game sends them to where they can get information on how to make their in-game experience a career reality.

"Gamers are innate problem solvers in high-pressure situations, making them the target audience for the most technologically advanced brand in the world, the U.S. Air Force," said Jay Russell, chief creative officer, GSD&M in a statement. "To capture this audience and raise awareness of Special Operations as a career path, we had to meet them on their turf and give them an experience worth playing -- one that requires a unique skillset, and is as immersive as it is challenging and intelligent."

The game is the latest in the Air Force's recruitment campaign, "We Need People Who Can Do This."

"As the most tech-driven branch in the military, the Air Force seeks digital-first, solution-driven candidates to join its team," added U.S. Air Force Chief of Strategic Marketing Timothy Hanson in a statement. "In order to target this unique population, the U.S. Air Force evolved 'We Need People Who Can Do This' into an environment fit for gaming, offering mental strength challenges in a fast-paced, rigorous setting."

The partnership marks the first time PlayStation has co-produced a VR game with a brand.


Jul 12, 2017
U.S. Air Force/Sony PlayStation
U.S. Air Force/Sony PlayStation

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