September 13, 2021 – Bohemia Interactive Simulations (BISim), a developer of advanced military simulation and training software, has recently announced the latest major software release of VBS4, the company’s whole-earth virtual and constructive simulation platform. From today, customers can download VBS4 21.1 via the BISim Customer Portal.
VBS4 21.1 introduces performance improvements and realistic environmental scenes for more immersive training environments anywhere in the world. These include:
- An upgrade to NVIDIA’s PhysX 4 as VBS4’s new physics engine;
- New workflows offering greater flexibility in setting up network architectures;
- Access to high-fidelity Microsoft Bing Maps global satellite imagery directly through the VBS4 launcher (requires a Microsoft Bing API key and a VBS4 license update);
- Enhancements to environmental visuals like high-fidelity ship wakes, snow, surface moisture and 3D tree visualization with minimal performance impacts; and
- Dozens of highly detailed, interactive 3D models of vehicles, characters, and equipment representing militaries and cultures from around the world.
As well as the above, there are also new capabilities that have been added to VBS Geo, VBS4’s built-in, easy-to-use terrain editing tool. With version 21.1, users can make detailed new inland water bodies and islands as part of their normal terrain editing, as well as editing existing global water features. This capability can also be used to create flood scenes for disaster response and relief training uses. VBS Geo has also been optimized to improve how it handles larger terrains, reducing file sizes and speeding up save/load times, according to BISim.
Furthermore, new content has been added with this update. VBS4’s 19,000+ content library grew by over 60 new 3D models including tanks, helicopters, fighter jets, equipment, weapons, and civilian characters.
Finally, VBS4 21.1 introduces ‘ViewPorts’, which are additional camera views that are configured in the VBS4 Editor. ViewPorts may display a camera that is linked to a different object, or a different sensor simulation than the main VBS4 window, providing a multi-view/channel capability for a single VBS4 PC. The company noted that typically, no more than two ViewPorts will be used with a single VBS4 instance. There are two types of ViewPorts:
- ViewPort picture-in-picture – a ViewPort created within the main VBS4 window, showing an alternate VBS4 camera view;
- ViewPort window – a ViewPort spawned in an entirely new window, showing an alternate VBS4 camera view. ViewPort windows may also contain picture-in-picture ViewPorts, allowing for highly customizable ViewPort layouts.
For more complex multi-view deployments, BISim recommends using ‘VBS Blue IG’, an optimized and CIGI-compliant image generator product from the company.
Commenting on the latest update, BISim CCO, Pete Morrison, said: “VBS4 delivers easy-to-use tools for trainers and simulation administrators, amazing graphical visuals to immerse soldiers in a realistic virtual training environment, and many more military training use cases than any other simulation software available.”
BISim’s technology was recently selected as the core simulation, visualization and terrain management software for US Army’s 2025 and beyond simulation capability. The company’s customers include the US Army, US Marine Corps, Australian Defence Force, Swedish Armed Forces, French MoD and UK MoD and most major integrators.
For more information on BISim and its immersive military simulation and training software, visit the company’s website.
Image / video credit: BISim / YouTube
About the author
Sam is the Founder and Managing Editor of Auganix. With a background in research and report writing, he has been covering XR industry news for the past seven years.