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Game Theory: Poker Session Ends in a Gunfight

26 January 2010, By: Charlie River
man with gunl 300x199
man with gunl 300x199

You are playing in a dodgy poker game against two players. All of you go all-in, but neither of you thinks he holds the winning hand. Instead of revealing your cards everybody pulls out their guns. Who do you shoot?





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  • Charlie River 15/02/2010 10:39am (9 years ago)

    symotobol, I love your answer. I was thinking that the best way is to not aim at anyone. Just shoot a bullet out in open air. Then player 2 will try to shoot player 3, and if he misses, player 3 might shoot player 2. But you have a point there. Since you are such a bad shot you might miss the open air and accidentally kill an opponent, which is bad for you from a game-theory perspective.

  • symotobol 12/02/2010 3:48pm (9 years ago)

    Obviously, you aim at your own head, since the odds of not killing yourself are better than the 6-1 of russian roulette. If you you get the 10% bad beat, you're dead and can't bore peole bymoaning about it. Now you have three other possibilities, you miss youself and hit nothing, you miss and hit player A, or you miss and hit player B. so you have good odds of hitting a player by missing yourself. In effect, your chance of hitting a target has actually increased, you have a 2/3 chance of hitting one of the other players, over a 10/1 shot at hitting yourself. Since the other two are shooting at each other because they know you can't shoot fish in a barrel, if there is a survivor he will be so intimidated by your apparently crazy play style he will fold his Royal flush. There is also a smaller chance of hitting both players, a la the magic bullet(jfk assassination). If you are a Scandi or Lee Harvey Oswald you will hit the suck-out and kill both players.

  • Charlie River 27/01/2010 11:15am (9 years ago)

    You're on to something there Snyder. Nobody cares about you. But I wouldn't aim at the 60% guy.

  • snyder321 27/01/2010 10:20am (9 years ago)

    going for 60% guy,i have a good chance he shooting at 90%, nobody cares about me , they know (like my river cards) i never hit anything

  • Charlie River 26/01/2010 4:03pm (9 years ago)

    LOL! That is one way of doing this. But what if you don't do any pistol whips?

  • shawn 26/01/2010 2:57pm (9 years ago)

    I aim at the 90% man hoping to hit him then pistol whip the 60% man and hope to knock him out if I didn't hit the 90% shooter I might still have time (since he is so slow) to knock him over the head as well!