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The Turing Test was a three-player 'imitation game' devised by Alan Turing. In his original paper, Turing had an interrogator ask questions of a man and a woman, both unseen, and the interrogator had to determine from their answers which was which. He then conjectured on how an artificial intelligence might fare and whether an interrogator could distinguish a human respondent from a computer. Turing, from Man O'Kent, replicates a similar 'imitation game' but where 1-6 'interrogators' have to correctly distinguish between the two sets of responses submitted by a 'responder'.

The game uses cards with various images; mostly abstract or ambiguous photos reminiscent of the cards used in Dixit (Libellud). Behind a screen, the respondent draws four cards and chooses one as their response and one as the response of 'the machine'. The responder hands the cards to the other players (the 'interrogators') indicating only which is 'Left' and which is 'Right'. This process is repeated three times so that the interrogators have a display of three cards to the Left and three cards to the Right. Their task is then to determine which is the deliberate choice of the respondent and which is the response of 'the machine'. Essentially what the respondent is trying to do is flag the set they've indicated as their own by choosing cards that show a connection, while submitting for the machine cards that the interrogators will see as random.

If you like Dixit, then Turing is bound to appeal - and with the added benefit that you can press the Turing cards into service as another alternate set of Dixit cards and/or use Dixit cards to play Turing. Man O'Kent's rules suggest various options for scoring correct answers, depending on whether you prefer competitive or cooperative play. In our Board's Eye View plays of this early preview prototype, we found the rules for cooperative scoring by majority voting a jot too easy so our preference was for competitive play, but it's good that the game offers options. It also allows some flexibility in scaling the difficulty level by reducing the number of cards drawn by the responder (making it harder) or by increasing the responder's card draw (making it easier to come up with a pattern or connection between cards that the other players will identify).

We're eagerly looking forward to seeing how Turing develops over the coming months but even in this preliminary prototype form it already passes the Turing Test of human intelligent design :-)

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