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Liar Game: Game Theory on Screen

    • There are 11 players locked together in a large hall.
    • Each player has a letter code A-K, which will be unknown to other players.
    • There are 3 kinds of apples: Gold, Silver, and Red.
    • There are 13 (or so) rounds. Each round has the time limit of one hour.
    • In each round, the players have to go into a room one by one, pick an apple, brand it with their names, and put it in a box.

  • The round will finish after every player has cast his/her apple.
  • Players who belong to the majority between Gold and Silver will win $1m, and those in the minority will lose $1m. For example, if 6 players choose Gold and 5 players choose Silver. Those who choose Gold will win $1m each, and those who do not will lose $1m.
  • However, some players choose Red, those who choose Red will lose $1m, and those who choose Gold or Silver will win $1m.
  • If all the players choose Red, all will win $1m.
  • If all the players unanimously choose Gold or Silver, all will lose $1m.
  • If all but one player choose Red, one who does not will win $2m.
  • If only one player chooses Red, he/she will lose $10m.
  • After each round, the result will be announced. The players will know the number of each kinds of apples chosen, and will know the changes in prize money for all the players by the codes. (Which, as explained above, are not known to other players.)

The game above is from Japanese film called Liar Game: The Final Stage. Basically, the outline of the game is quite similar to a prisoner’s dilemma. The game is actually more complexed than that, as it is not only about the decision-making part we study in game theory. It is far beyond that. Still, this nicely created game looks rather fun to play with some game theory enthusiasts.

I saw this film on the Air Canada flight from Tokyo to Toronto. It was the most entertaining film I saw on the flights. (The other two that I saw were Thai film Dear Galileo, watched on Bangkok-Tokyo flight, and Sex and The City, on Tokyo-Toronto. Both were very boring.) The film looks like a typical Japanese adaptation of comics, since it is an adaptation from a manga series. (I learnt this fact afterwards.)

I wouldn’t say the film is artistically expressed or anything, but for those who love strategic games, this should be fun.

Note: You might want to read this.

Published in lang:English Media