Army recruiting gamers in UK

Headhunters are targeting kids who play video games to become helicopter pilots, reports the <i>Sunday Mirror</i>.

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The UK Army is looking for teenagers who extensively play video games, as their hand-to-eye coordination and other abilities used while gaming apparently make them a perfect fit for piloting Apache helicopters.

Yes, gamers, this means you.
Yes, gamers, this means you.

Helicopters are extremely complicated vehicles to fly, and it often takes years for a pilot to master the controls. The Army has deployed the Apaches to Afghanistan where it says they have played "a crucial role," but more pilots are desperately needed.

A senior Army Air Corps source told the tabloid, "The skill in flying the aircraft is to absorb large amounts of information from different sources without becoming flustered. The new generation of computer-game-playing youngsters glued to their PlayStations, Xboxes and Game Boys already have some of those skills."

The UK ordered a fleet of 67 Apache helicopters in 2002, at the cost of approximately £37 million (around $71 million) per aircraft. The move was criticised after the machines had to be kept in storage due to a lack of pilots who could fly them--the original training programme had been put back from April 2004 until February 2007.

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