Original title Serious Games I: Watson ist hin Director Harun Farocki Cinematographer Ingo Kratisch Sound Matthias Rajmann Editing Harun Farocki Online-editing Max Reimann, Jan Ralske Script Harun Farocki, Matthias Rajmann Production Harun Farocki Filmproduktion, Berlin supported by medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg GmbH, Bienal de Sao Paulo and KUB, Kunsthaus Bregenz Format Video (double projection), color, sound, 8 min. (Loop), Germany 2010 Note Single-channel-version available
In the autumn of 2009 we filmed a drill at the Marine Corps Base 29 Palms in California. Four Marines sitting in a class represented the crew of a tank. They had laptops in front of them on which they steered their own vehicle and watched others in the unit being driven through a Computer-Animation Landscape. The simulated Afghan is based on geographical data out of Afghanistan. A street in the computer landscape runs exactly as it would in the real Afghanistan; the same holds for every tree, the vegetation on the ground or the mountain ranges. The instructor places explosive devices and sets insurgents out in the area. A sniper shot the tank gunner, which we documented with the camera. When the tank drives over the fallow it kicks up a dust tail. The more vegetation there is, the less dust. On the asphalt street, no dust. Even with all this attention to detail, death in the computer game is still something different than the real one.