Wargames & Simulations

Valens Global has extensive experience in providing engaging and valuable simulations. We have hosted previous simulations for Georgetown University, Johns Hopkins University, Duke University, and the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, among others. To learn more about war games run by Valens Global through participants’ eyes, explore below.

“Acceleration,” Duke University’s Program in American Grand Strategy

“Threat Level: Midnight,” Johns Hopkins University, Krieger School of Arts & Sciences, MA Global Security Studies

TESTIMONIALS

“Overall great simulation put on by the Valens team. I'm a fan of your work and am grateful for the opportunity. I loved reading the news feed and reflecting upon how the trends we focused on (disinformation, the rise of domestic white nationalist extremism, etc.) are true realities of the present day. As a member of Team Jigsaw, I enjoyed thinking about the responsibilities that technology companies have, my personal ethical principles on these matters, and potential solutions for our future.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Duke University, Fall 2020
“The simulation was very well put together. It forced actors to consider viewpoints and agendas that were not Western-centric or ethnocentric.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Duke University, Fall 2020
“The simulation was a great way to learn about decision making in a short amount of time. I especially liked interacting with the other students on the team, and I hope to find an opportunity to do in-person simulations with Valens in the near future.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Duke University, Fall 2020
“This experience definitely pushed me to think more deeply about the solutions and problems related to misinformation in today's context. I’ve been personally interested in the role that the media is playing in America’s polarized context today, and this opportunity pushed me to ask critical questions about what role, responsibilities, and resources tech companies have in shaping national and global narratives.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Duke University, Fall 2020
“It was a very stimulating and enjoyable experience that gave me good insight into how interactions may go between different political institutions and their members.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Duke University, Fall 2020
“Having designed and ran simulations like these at another firm, I greatly admired the level of detail reflected in this simulation. The injects were realistic and impactful, and the videos and tweets were a terrific touch.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Duke University, Fall 2020
“The plot was very realistic with regard to the role of the media, Russia's intervention, and the refugee crisis. I like how the simulation required us to consider other actors’ points of view and approach negotiations with that in mind. I think there was a good amount of time between turns, and I appreciated being able to work around my schedule and still have plenty of time to discuss options with my team.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Duke University, Fall 2020
“Excellent news feed—very easy to follow and incredibly well-developed. Additionally, open-ended actions were a nice change from other security simulations and war games I have participated in.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Duke University, Fall 2020
“Incredibly realistic, good balance of inter-team and cross-team coordination, compelling plot.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Duke University, Fall 2020
“I was very impressed by the quality of the simulation materials and how well thought out the plot was. The resources were excellent.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Duke University, Fall 2020
“The news releases were really well done, and there were great opportunities and incentives for cooperation among teams.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Duke University, Fall 2020
“Excellent experience overall; game was entertaining, well-paced, and thoughtful. I particularly enjoyed it as an opportunity to work with some new classmates as we started the program.” Participant, “Sleeping Giants” war game, National Security Fellows Program, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fall 2020
“I LOVED it. The multifaceted plot was so rich with content and you really had to think hard about it to make it work. Thanks for the opportunity.” Participant, “Sleeping Giants” war game, National Security Fellows Program, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fall 2020
“Great opportunity to team build, as well as explore applicable national security concepts from different perspectives.” Participant, “Sleeping Giants” war game, National Security Fellows Program, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fall 2020
“Very realistic and sophisticated plot lines. Loved the acting, as well! Well done.” Participant, “Sleeping Giants” war game, National Security Fellows Program, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fall 2020
“This simulation was great; I don't know if I’ll ever want to go back to in-person war games.” Participant, “Sleeping Giants” war game, National Security Fellows Program, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fall 2020
“The right amount of complexity for the two-week virtual environment.” Participant, “Sleeping Giants” war game, National Security Fellows Program, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fall 2020
“Best wargame experience I’ve been a part of during my career.” Participant, “Sleeping Giants” war game, National Security Fellows Program, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fall 2020
“I particularly liked that we got to DO something. I’ve done a number of these during which Red does a lot of things trying to provoke a reaction, but Blue’s best option is usually to do nothing. I really enjoyed that this was different.” Participant, “Sleeping Giants” war game, National Security Fellows Program, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fall 2020
“It seemed like a lot of story went into making this wargame. This makes the game more interesting and gives the players more to think about. Given that each team only had three moves each turn, sometimes this meant weighing priorities and leaving a decision for the next turn. I actually liked the spaced out turns, though. Not only did it work better with my work/life schedule, but it gave me more time to review news feeds and memos.” Participant, “Sleeping Giants” war game, National Security Fellows Program, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fall 2020
“Accurate and compelling storylines. Didn’t try to solve world hunger or “start and end the war” in two weeks. Was a reasonable snapshot in time.” Participant, “Sleeping Giants” war game, National Security Fellows Program, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fall 2020
“Very complex plot lines for all the teams. The pace and structure were both really good. This war game’s design allowed the team to be engaged, but not overwhelmed.” Participant, “Sleeping Giants” war game, National Security Fellows Program, Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fall 2020
“I feel really lucky to have had the opportunity to partake in this wargame. It was very instructive to work with people with different backgrounds and experience with group decision-making. Being able to experience what it is like to work in a “safe place” (i.e. where everyone’s input is valued) was also great, as too often in real life this isn’t the case.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“I am not part of any department in the field, just got the mass email and thought it sounded interesting – and, boy, was it ever! This was a world I’d never thought more about than reading Le Carre or watching Designated Survivor! It was wonderful to see how much had been created and what the facilitators and other players did with it. Truly an eye-opening experience!” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“I thought this was fascinating. Valens’ game design is very timely and a great blend between current real-world global security issues with a hint of comic relief.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“I thoroughly enjoyed the rigor of the simulation. You could tell all of the details were well thought out into the game. The game’s events felt realistic and encouraged critical thinking of our current society.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“Thanks to this war game, I now have a greater appreciation for the complexity of decision-making that happens on a daily basis in the State Department.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“I really enjoyed the simulation – it helped open a lot of doors into real-life scenarios that would otherwise not have come across in the classroom. Thanks so much for putting this together!” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“Loved playing in this simulation (first experience). I look forward to playing again. I felt I learned so much about the world and how certain decisions could lead to certain impacts.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“This was a great experience with a lot of thought-provoking situations that encouraged innovative thinking through the application of existing knowledge and quick, broad-focused open-source research.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“Incredibly fun, engaging, and thought-provoking; passed the “stress test” every time!” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“YOU did a GREAT job in putting this together. It all made sense to me, even though the whole thing was new to me! GREAT JOB! Looking forward to the next game.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“The simulation did really well at restricting the abilities and reach of every group. This allowed more interaction and reaction with the different individual teams and their responsibilities in the international conflict.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“1. News feed was amazing – I cannot believe how much work and detail went into it, this was a huge highlight; 2. I was really excited to see the impact of the moves each day, as the moves felt like they were changing the simulation; 3. My interactions with Valens staff were outstanding.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“The simulation presented an easily accessible and understandable framework through which to interact with teams and interpret/influence simulated events.” Participant, “Acceleration” war game, Johns Hopkins University, Fall 2020
“This was the first time I had ever participated in this type of simulation/wargame, but I really enjoyed the exercise – especially as the simulation went on and I became more comfortable and used to it. I appreciated how complex the story was – even if it made gameplay somewhat difficult at times – because that made it feel even more realistic.” Participant, “State Proxies” war game, Georgetown University, Spring 2020
“The ‘world-building’ was great. I appreciated the amount of time and thought that must have gone into the planning and creation of resources (and, oh, those amazing tweets!)” Participant, “State Proxies” war game, Georgetown University, Spring 2020
“Incredible. Everything felt realistic, especially frustration at the fog of war. The multiple events flying around was disorienting but in an exhilarating way.” Participant, “State Proxies” war game, Georgetown University, Spring 2020
“Great mix of state and non-state players, and I loved the role of disinformation as a tool of state power. Made great power competition more complicated!” Participant, “State Proxies” war game, Georgetown University, Spring 2020
“Extremely well thought-out; considered all possible outcomes!” Participant, “State Proxies” war game, Georgetown University, Spring 2020
“I really enjoyed participating in this simulation. It was well-structured, organized, and informative. It was also a great opportunity for participants to build their critical thinking skills.” Participant, “State Proxies” war game, Georgetown University, Spring 2020
“Valens Global’s skilled team members contributed to the smooth progress of this simulation. Their role-playing/acting skills were impressive. Additionally, the simulation was well-plotted out with credible evidence.” Participant, “State Proxies” war game, Georgetown University, Spring 2020
“I thought it was a great experience! The simulation provided a lot of insight into how diplomacy works and how to establish priorities and make strategic decisions.” Participant, “State Proxies” war game, Georgetown University, Spring 2020
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