The Types of Game Theory

On this blog, we have recently discussed what game theory is, and how it it is used in economic theory to predict actions of certain economic players. However, it is important to address that there are many different models that are used within game Thierry, far more than just the standard model of zero-sum games that we’ve discussed before. These different types of models are good for figuring out different types of scenarios, and can each address a specific issue that the others might leave out. Here are several different types of game models in game theory…

Cooperative vs. Non-cooperative

A cooperative or non-cooperative game refers to the relationship that the different actors, or players, in a particular equation can have with each other. For example, in a cooperative game, the players are able to make commitments and bonds that change their relations with each other, while in a non-cooperative game, they are not. This type of strict binary rarely exists in a real economic scenario, but it does have a huge effect on game theory, and the equations that attempt to predict the outcome of various behavioral factors.

Symmetric vs. Asymmetric

Whether a game is considered symmetric or asymmetric is dependent on whether or not the identity of the player has an effect on the effectiveness of the strategy at hand. A symmetric game indicates a certain fairness, or evenness, since the strategy in play is only dependent on the strategies of the other players, instead of the who the player is. An asymmetric game, however, is one where the strategies for each player are different depending on their identity.

Simultaneous vs. Sequential

This is one of the most straightforward types of games to understand. This type of game equation measures how the actions in a simulation, or game, occur over time. A simultaneous game is one in which the players, or actors, are able to both interact at the same time, while a sequential game will be one where players move in sequential order, often due to needing the knowledge of a previous movement. Typically, a simultaneous game is more useful for achieving the Nash equilibrium in an equation, because the players are offset in the order of their sequential movements.