Week 3 Discussion: Prisoners Dilemma

March 29, 2016

Play the Prisoner's Dilemma game, there are five different firms you will need to play against. Play against each one and keep track of your outcome. Post about how you played against each firm and why you played as you did. Use Game Theory ideas to formulate why you played as you did. 


Test #1: Cooperation:
During test one I wanted to see what would happen if I just did cooperation for all 25 rounds and the result was a push with 20 for me and 20 for my opponent. This approach felt like it a mutual beneficial and would keep us both out of prison. 


Test #2: Defect:
During test two I did the opposite and defected all 25 rounds. The result was 11.6 to 9.2 in my favor. The first two rounds I defected he cooperated and it gave me the edge when he finally learned what I was doing and he defected for the other 23 rounds. This approach was extremely aggressive and I was rewarded for being let out on bail for the night so it would seem.

Test 3: 5 Cooperate, 5 Defect:
During test three my opponent was not thrown off by my attempt to fool him by doing an alternating pattern of five cooperate followed by five defect, and repeating for the other fifteen rounds. The end result was 8.8 and 19.6 in his favor. I do believe this would result in my being incarcerated. The reason I chose this number sequence was because of the 25 rounds it being divisible by five as well as that being the number of people in my household. Being mostly cooperative cost me in this one the end result was a unnerving scary night with smelly hobos, and conniving petty thieves. 

 Test 4: 5 Defect, 5 Cooperation:
During test four I did the reverse order as test three because with test three there were fifteen rounds of cooperate and only ten of defect, I wanted to see what the difference would be if there were five extra rounds of defect than cooperation. The results were extremely surprising given the almost vertical landslide for a loss in test three. In test four the average was another push at 14 and 14. There isn't much room for a margin of error here but It is great enough that a couple of more rounds could determine whether or not I was going to prison or if my opponent was.

 Test 5: 2 Defect, 1 Cooperate:
Test five was actually inspired by my baby, who was randomly making cooing noises and it sounded like boom-boom-kishhhh, boom-boom-kishhh. I translated it to the booms as me lashing out and getting my payback, and the kishhh as me being the good boy and cooperating with my opponent. The results were not very surprising to me as I was being 2/3 aggressive and 1/3 passive. The score pretty much reflects that at being 6.8 and 16.4 in his favor. The end result really hurt me and with my fifth opponent had I been 2/3 passive and 1/3 aggressive I believe it would have flipped to my favor. 

 As you can see in the above picture for Opponent 5, the Total response for me was 61.2 and 79.2 for my opponent. So with an aggressive approach I believe that is the reason I am spending some time in prison whilst my opponent is free enjoying his life. It just goes to show that an aggressive attitude isn't the way to be and that "Hugs not Slugs" is the best policy for happiness. Below is a second play through exactly the same only difference is test five I am being 2/3 passive and 1/3 aggressive. Just to see if my theory is correct.

Test 6-10- Theory Test:

 As you can see that I am incorrect. My opponent still enjoys his freedom whilst I whittle away the hours in my a 6x8. With this test it just reaffirms my desire to not do anything wrong and be a good little boy for all my life!




Want to play, and see how you fare? Click here! Just keep in mind myself and the vast majority of my classmates had the cooperation and defect backwards. To 'Cooperate' means you are cooperating with the police and not withy our accomplice. To 'Defect' is to essentially plead the fifth and remain silent. The higher your score the more time you are spending in prison, the lower the less time you are spending in prison. Each opponent reacts differently than the one before it or after it. If you want to test out any theories you may have you have to play through the game multiple times. One play through counts as Opponent 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. Think of it as going against five different people. Joe, Chris, Ron, Aaron, and Dave. If the link does not work copy and paste this one!


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