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Game Theory in Simulations

Link to paper titled “Rational Game Theory and Serious Video Games”:

http://www.sundialmedia.com/papers/futureplay.pdf

The paper is about applying game theory principles to “serious video games” or “computational simulations of real-world events or processes that have pedagogical significance over and above their possible entertainment value”. The author attempts to apply game theory to two games both about Darfur, one playing one side (as a family trying to survive) and the other side as the militia. Problems crop up when trying to fit the family simulation game into game theory. The player doesn’t have any way to boost rewards, nor do they have alternate strategies. However, when playing as the aggressor, you can command armies, form coalitions, looting, etc. The author is able to fit the second game into an instance of Prisoner’s Dilemma payoff matrix. The paper goes on to talk about a couple of other aspects of game theory (that were not covered in class). The author concludes with a comment about why applying game theory to these “simulations” could be good for preparing for what actually happens in real life.

 

In class, we used game theory in relatively tame examples. This paper is an example of using game theory for a more practical applications (simulating how these situations can play out).

 

-vw

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