The Playing with Pigs project is researching the complex relationship we have with domesticated pigs by designing a game. Designing new forms of human-pig interaction can create the opportunity for consumers and pigs to forge new relations as well as to experience the cognitive capabilities of each other. The game is called Pig Chase.
Pigs play with the help of a large touch sensitive display. On it, a human-controlled ball of light moves around. When they touch the ball, it fires off colorful sparks. Humans play the game on a tablet computer such as an iPad. They move the ball of light with their finger and see the pigs’ snouts as if they were on the other side of the screen. If pigs and humans move in harmony, that is, if a pig’s snout and the human’s ball of light move through a goal triangle, it triggers a colorful display of fireworks. An additional challenge for humans is to maintain contact with the pigs’ snouts. If they do not, their ball of light fizzles out. Finally, the number of targets a human and pig hit in one session is kept track of and shown in a high score table. So what we have is a game that enables humans to play with an animal they normally only consume as meat. For pigs, humans are transformed into a source of entertainment.