Deterministic n-person shortest path and terminal games on symmetric digraphs have Nash equilibria in pure stationary strategies

Endre Boros, Paolo Giulio Franciosa, Vladimir Gurvich, Michael Vyalyi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We prove that a deterministic n-person shortest path game has a Nash equlibrium in pure and stationary strategies if it is edge-symmetric (that is (u, v) is a move whenever (v, u) is, apart from moves entering terminal vertices) and the length of every move is positive for each player. Both conditions are essential, though it remains an open problem whether there exists a NE-free 2-person non-edge-symmetric game with positive lengths. We provide examples for NE-free 2-person edge-symmetric games that are not positive. We also consider the special case of terminal games (shortest path games in which only terminal moves have nonzero length, possibly negative) and prove that edge-symmetric n-person terminal games always have Nash equilibria in pure and stationary strategies. Furthermore, we prove that an edge-symmetric 2-person terminal game has a uniform (subgame perfect) Nash equilibrium, provided any infinite play is worse than any of the terminals for both players.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalInternational Journal of Game Theory
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2023
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Statistics and Probability
  • Mathematics (miscellaneous)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty

Keywords

  • n-Person deterministic graphical games
  • Nash equilibrium
  • Shortest path games
  • Terminal games

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