Jason Rauck’s love of gaming runs deep. As a project lead and game designer with our San Antonio office’s Immersive team, Jason leads project teams to design and develop interactive game-based training and operational simulations that prepare U.S. warfighters for mission-relevant experiences.
After work, the gaming continues. A firm believer in the importance of collective ingenuity and team camaraderie, Jason created “Hunger & Games,” a recurring after-hours social event where colleagues gather to grab a bite, hang out, and play board and video games for office bragging rights. It’s one of several team-building activities he’s helped champion, all with the aim of creating a professional environment where every person knows their colleagues, understands the mission, and feels comfortable turning to others for mentorship and advice.
Jason also extends his passions for gaming and supporting others to the local community. As part of an office-sponsored education outreach program, he’s partnered with teachers and administrators at San Antonio schools to stoke interest in STEM classes. One of the ways they do so this is by connecting students’ natural interest in video games to the math, programming, and technical skills required to create and design them. Doing so helps him raise awareness of the potential games have to transform how people learn and interact with the world.
Why did you choose to pursue a career in game design?
There’s no limit to what type of experience games can provide. Game design in the traditional sense is about connecting players to an entertaining experience. That’s what drew me in. I grew up playing classic strategy games like Age of Empires, but even at a young age I was interested in how games were designed and built. I ultimately chose this career path because the opportunities for creative expression are boundless.
Why did you choose Booz Allen?
All my closest friends in college had game development degrees, and after graduating, most of them took jobs in the commercial game industry. That didn’t interest me as much. I saw the value that gaming could bring to the training and simulation industry, and so did Booz Allen. When I took the job, a lot of my friends were surprised that a consulting firm like Booz Allen hires game designers—that made me proud. The firm is forward-thinking in terms of how to apply interactive technologies to real world challenges, and how games can ultimately benefit our clients.
What does the future of gaming look like?
The entertainment factor cannot be ignored. Our team isn’t designing games that are going to be sold in stores. We’re trying to address our client’s specific challenges through highly-tailored immersive solutions—but those solutions still need to be enjoyable. The young recruits who are joining the military expect technology to be integrated into their training. Each of our Immersive teams across the firm want to get these technologies into the hands of these recruits so that they can practice, fail, learn, and improve. That way they’ll be better suited to perform their duties.