Engineering & Computer Simulations' Matthew Becchio has been named the integrated product team (IPT) industry lead (or chair) for the Serious Games Showcase & Challenge (SGS&C) at 2024’s Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation and Education Conference (I/ITSEC).

A software engineer at ECS, Becchio has previous experience working with SGS&C as an intern, a finalist, and a committee member. As IPT industry lead of the 2024 competition, he will ensure milestones and deadlines are met, and other activities flow smoothly in preparation for the event, such as managing submissions and the evaluator pool, as well as other operational and logistical concerns.

The SGS&C spotlights new ideas, concepts, and innovations in serious games development, and it garners special attention every year at I/ITSEC., Organized and sponsored by the National Training & Simulation Association, I/ITSEC is the world's largest modeling, simulation, and training (MS&T) event. The competition is open to a wide variety of contestants, to include university students, government agencies, government contractors, companies, and any other organization that is developing serious/educational games.


Becchio said SGS&C’s goal is to elevate serious games, and gaming content submitted to the contest, which can range from cybersecurity and government defense, to how to read a college laboratory manual or general physics for high school students.

“The committee gets together to play and evaluate all the submitted games and we determine the finalists based on a set of criteria and a survey system,” explains Becchio. “The awards are determined by a pool of evaluators who are professionals in serious and educational games – it’s a large pool of all types of career paths. The finalists chosen by the IPT are featured at I/ITSEC where they are invited to showcase their games.”

“A lot of games only concentrate on the training goal, and the user experience that advocates for the player can get lost,” Becchio said. “In games developed for government solutions, I see that often and it’s pretty standard in this industry. What I really like to see are games that demonstrate care for the user experience in what interests the players, what engages them best, and what keeps them captivated.”

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