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The end of the year is the prime party season in Japan, when groups of coworkers and friends gather to celebrate Christmas, the end of the old year, and the start of the new one. Generally, most attendees are conent to chat, eat fried chicken or other broadly popular grub, and drink far more than would be socially acceptable in most other countries.

At some gatherings there are games to be played, too. Bingo and quizzes are both pretty common, but if neither one of those is quite exciting enough for you, maybe you’d like to spice things up by having you and the people you see every day at the office ask each other potentially embarrassing questions. And just to make sure the atmosphere of awkwardness is 100-percent genuine, why not bring along one of these handy head-mounted lie detectors from toymaker Takara Tomy?

If we’re being technical, the Kokoro Scanner (“Heart Scanner”) falls into the same category as a polygraph machine, in that it can’t absolutely confirm whether or not you’re being truthful.

▼ Which is why Kokoro Scanner results aren’t admissible as evidence in a court of law

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What it can do, though, is monitor your pulse, looking for and alerting others to a quickened heart rate, which is a common side effect of telling a fib.

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To start, the player/accused straps the Kokoro Scanner to his or her head and turns on the power. The device monitors their heart rate to establish a baseline, and once it does, you’re all set to start tearing holes in their veil of social niceties and/or flimsy barrier of personal privacy. Ask your question, and as the wearer responds, the light on their forehead will shine with one of three colors. Green indicates a normal pulse (with the implication of an honest answer), yellow a slightly increased heart rate, and red a major spike.

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As an extra bit of sadistic fun, the person wearing the device is the only person who can’t see the light. And just in case you lack the creativity to think up your own squirm-worthy questions, the 2,500-yen (US$23) Kokoro Scanner even comes with a set of 15 questions written out on cards, which Takara Tomy recommends drawing Old Maid-style.

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It’s all laid out in this promotional video, in which the toymaker boasts, “Everyone will have a fun, exciting time together!” as Blondy McSpikyhead sweats profusely and his “friends” point and laugh at him.

“Hey, it’s showing red!”

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You can order your high-tech Kokoro Scanner straight from Takara Tomy here, just in case you don’t feel confident in your ability to ruin a party the old-fashioned way by getting sloppy drunk, throwing up on the table, and using your boss’ jacket to wipe yourself off.

Source: IT Media
Top image: YouTube
Insert images: Takara Tomy, YouTube