# Game Theory - Characteristics Of Games, Analysis Of Zero-sum, Two-player Games, Nonzero-sum Games

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applied science strategy neumann

Game theory is a branch of **mathematics** concerned with the analysis of conflict situations. It involves determining a strategy for a given situation and the costs or benefits realized by using the strategy. First developed in the early twentieth century, it was originally applied to parlor games such as bridge, chess, and poker. Now, game theory is applied to a wide range of subjects such as economics, behavioral sciences, sociology, military science, and political science.

The notion of game theory was first suggested by mathematician John von Neumann in 1928. The theory received little attention until 1944 when Neumann and economist Oskar Morgenstern wrote the classic treatise *Theory of Games and Economic Behavior*. Since then, many economists and operational research scientists have expanded and applied the theory.

## Additional Topics

An essential feature of any game is conflict between two or more players resulting in a win for some and a loss for others. Additionally, games have other characteristics which make them playable. There is a way to start the game. There are defined choices players can make for any situation that can arise in the game. During each move, single players are forced to make choices or the choices are a…

In some games there are only two players and in the end, one wins while the other loses. This also means that the amount gained by the winner will be equal to the amount lost by the loser. The strategies suggested by game theory are particularly applicable to games such as these, known as zero-sum, two-player games. Consider the game of matching pennies. Two players put down a penny each, either h…

Most conflict situations are not zero-sum games or limited to two players. A nonzero-sum game is one in which the amount won by the victor is not equal to the amount lost by the loser. The Minimax Theorem does not apply to either of these types of games, but various weaker forms of a solution have been proposed including noncooperative and cooperative solutions. When more than two people are invol…

Game theory is a powerful tool that can suggest the best strategy or outcome in many different situations. Economists, political scientists, the military, and sociologists have all used it to describe situations in their various fields. A recent application of game theory has been in the study of the behavior of animals in nature. Here, researchers are applying the notions of game theory to descri…

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