As the latest product of the Office of Science & Technology’s Foresight Flood and Coastal Defence project, the FloodRanger computer simulator is being hailed as a ‘sim city’ for the flood management community.

The model is based on data collected by climate researchers at the UK’s Hadley Centre, and although currently generic, may later be improved to focus on specific areas in the real world.

The game puts the player in the driving seat as a flood planner, allocated a specific budget, who has to decide how best to defend hypothetical towns, cities and the countryside as well as creating new jobs and building new housing.

The player has to make critical decisions like how much to spend on weir structures and reservoirs and whether future trade will be dominated by world market forces or small businesses.

The model then predicts potential scenarios over the following decades, scoring the player on various levels including public opinion and how well they protect against flood risk.

Discovery Software, the developer of the new game is targeting local authorities, government departments and universities.

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