To Call a Horse a Deer 指马为鹿 

video game / b&w and color / sound / 2018
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Preview video

https://vimeo.com/248164492/ab29085dbf (game demo)

https://vimeo.com/289434782/9b0f4741ac (Chinese version)

https://vimeo.com/236291529/57814c1c0d​ (Japanese version)

https://vimeo.com/293488436/1a92f1f645 (Korean version)

 

Synopsis

TO CALL A HORSE A DEER is an experimental video game about language, hand-eye coordination, truth-bending and acts of complicity.

The title of the work is an inversion of "to call a deer a horse", a Chinese idiom that is used to describe the deliberate act of confusing truth with untruth. The idiom originates from a story in the Chinese classical text Shiji (The Records of Grand Historians) in which an ambitious Qin politician tried to identify adversaries and silence dissent by colluding others to confuse a deer with a horse.  

 

This ancient tale resonates with our times in which systematized truth-bending became an everyday political reality and tools of governance.  The game, available in multiple languages, is both a mirror and a critique, a training simulator of truth-bending and its resistance.

Game rules

The player competes by answering rounds of “true or false” questions, following the instructions as given in the game.

  • The player will score 1 point by giving the CORRECT answer if he or she is instructed to LIE.

  • The player will score 1 point by giving the INCORRECT answer if he or she is instructed to TELL THE TRUTH.

  • An answer that does not conform to the given instruction will result in a deduction of 1 point.

  • The player can choose not to answer the question.  In that case, no point will be added or deducted.

keywords: critical game, hand-eye coordination, truth-bending, complicity