Questions tagged [game]

A puzzle that asks for determining the winner in a multi-player game.

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84
votes
9answers
13k views

Coin Flipping Game with the Devil

You die, and awake in Hell. Satan awaits you, and has prepared a curious game. He has arranged $n$ quarters in a line, going in the east/west direction. He placed the coins at the ends tails up, and ...
19
votes
4answers
3k views

A Tic-Tac-Toe type game

I found this interesting game with no name: You have a 1x11 grid, like this. The way you play is similar to Tic-Tac-Toe (aka Noughts and Crosses). Players take turns to place Xs and Os on the grid, ...
20
votes
4answers
1k views

Strategy to beat the casino over the long haul

$A$ and $B$ are attempting to beat the casino again, and the rules are the same: Each round, $A$, $B$, and the casino simultaneously decide to show a $0$ or a $1$. If all three numbers match, $A$ ...
16
votes
4answers
5k views

The Mexican Standoff

There are three cowboys in a Mexican standoff against each other, named Juan, José, and Jorge. Juan is the straightest shooter in the West, and can hit his target 100% of the time. José, who has a ...
15
votes
3answers
3k views

Optimal play for 2 by 2 dots and boxes

Consider the classic pencil and paper game Dots and Boxes . You can assume the 2 by 2 version (that is with 9 dots). Starting with an empty grid of dots, players take turns, adding a single ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the smallest tic-tac-toe board to have a winning strategy?

There is not winning strategy for 9cell 3x3 board. There is a winning strategy for 16cell 4x4 board, or even for 10cell "3x3 + 1_cell_near_a_corner" board (see M.Gardner "Mathematical games"): $$ \...
10
votes
2answers
495 views

How should you distribute the fighting power?

Alice and Bob both have N warriors under their command, numbered 1~N, and $1$ point of fighting power at their disposal. Before the game, they privately distribute the power between their warriors. ...
21
votes
3answers
3k views

Can you survive this infinite zombie attack?

You're surrounded by infinitely many zombies. You're at the origin, and zombies occupy the points $(100i,100j)$ for all integer $i, j$ except the origin, as shown below: You and the zombies move ...
36
votes
1answer
8k views

Coins on a table

John and Jane are playing a game. They both go to the bank and each get 1000 euros in two-euro pieces. So each of them has 500 coins at stake. They then find a large rectangle table and decide that ...
9
votes
1answer
279 views

Survive the infinite zombie attack II

Zombies are back again. Same as last time, You're at the origin, and zombies occupy the points $(100𝑖,100𝑗)$ for all integers $𝑖,𝑗$ except the origin, as shown below: The ratio of your speed to ...
5
votes
2answers
304 views

Even and odd game variant

You are playing a game with your friend on a $7$x$7$ grid board. In every turn, you begin by putting a $0$ (zero) on any empty square on the board, and then your friend puts a $1$ (one) on a different ...
2
votes
1answer
163 views

Adding up divisors of integers

Alice and Bob play a game, taking turns. Alice starts and writes an integer between 1 to 10 on a blackboard. Then Bob adds any integer between 1 to 10 to this number and writes it on the blackboard. ...
20
votes
3answers
2k views

Making a 9 digit number divisible by 11

Alice and Bob play the following game, taking turns. Alice starts and writes a non-zero single digit number at the blackboard. At every turn, each player adds a single digit at the right of the ...
13
votes
2answers
979 views

Making a 10 digit number divisible by 3

Alice and Bob play the following game, taking turns. Alice starts and writes a single digit from 0 to 9 at the blackboard. At every turn, each player adds a single digit at the right of the current ...
1
vote
1answer
275 views

1 lion, with a zebra and a fixed enclosure

Background See the puzzle Variant of lion and 100 zebras from @ghosts-in-the-code which remains unsolved years after it was posted. Several times in the last couple of years I've started to write up ...
-2
votes
1answer
250 views

The Box of Tic-Tacs

You were kidnapped and had no way of escape. The kidnapper opens the lights, and in front of you is an opened box of Tic-Tacs. He claims that he ate from 0-5 Tic-Tacs, (with 60 from the newly-bought ...
13
votes
3answers
483 views

Equal distribution of coins to pirates

Ten pirates are sitting around a table. Each of them has an even number of coins. At order of the captain, each pirate passes half of his coins to the neighbor to the right. After that round, each ...
1
vote
1answer
197 views

Catch the fugitive

The fugitive is at the origin. He moves at a speed of 100. You have a guard at every integer coordinate except the origin. A guard's speed is 1. The fugitive and your guards move simultaneously and ...
1
vote
1answer
76 views

All bracket results from final places in tournament [closed]

32 players are participating in a tournament. It's a knockout tournament, so it looks a lot like March Madness. You want to know how all the games went. The problem is that you only know the rankings ...
9
votes
1answer
749 views

Who will win in a game of writing 3 consecutive Xs on a 2022 × 1 board?

Ana and Bob alternately write Xs on a 2022 × 1 board. The winner is the one who makes 3 consecutive Xs. Who has the winning strategy if Ana plays the first move? Describe such a strategy.
4
votes
0answers
228 views

One vs many. Can white force a draw?

On an infinite chessboard there's a single white king and N black kings. The nearest black king must be K moves away from the white king. Given N, white dictates the value of (finite) K, then black ...
7
votes
2answers
321 views

Can the fugitive escape?

A fugitive is surrounded by N police officers, with the nearest one at distance 1 away. The fugitive and the officers move alternatively. In a fugitive move, the fugitive can travel no more than a ...
46
votes
4answers
6k views

Rock, Paper, Scissors and Trump

Alicia and Robert are two high-stakes gamblers who are playing a match of rock-paper-scissors. Each winning throw is worth 10 €, paid by the other player. These players have deep pockets, so matches ...
5
votes
1answer
498 views

Best strategy for stick-taking game

Rules of the game: It's a two player game. Moves will alternate between players. There are N sticks on a table. A value M is defined at the start of the game such that 2 < M <= N. On their turn,...
4
votes
1answer
206 views

Winning strategy in game

Context: I played this game at one point (and lost) and now I'm wondering whether it was possible to win or not. We have a hexagonal board like this: I'm defining the following terms: Each hexagon ...
12
votes
3answers
778 views

Outmaneuver your opponents in the duel

A, B and C are in a three way duel. Starting with A, they rotate in the order of A-B-C, each firing one shot at a time. They stand close to one another, so that each can kill one of the others or ...
8
votes
1answer
360 views

Grid puzzle solutions

I have a simple grid puzzle: Example: | X | Y | X | | Y | X | Y | | Y | X | Y | The move is defined as a row or a column move. So when you move one cell, ...
6
votes
1answer
308 views

Two players alternately name dates

Two players alternately name dates. The winner is the player who names 31st December, and the starting date is 1st January. If a player names Xst of Y Month, the other player can name the first of the ...
4
votes
1answer
179 views

Wooden puzzle/game - 16 dowels with five wooden balls with holes each

I acquired a wooden puzzle game from a local thrift store. They had no information about it. Here's a description: In a wooden board base are mounted 16 dowels on each of the dowels are 5 wooden balls ...
21
votes
1answer
1k views

Worst case scenario in 2048

The game 2048 can be thought as a two player game, where one player shifts the table around to get to the 2048 tile, while the other player tries to hinder them by putting down 2s and 4s on the table. ...
5
votes
1answer
240 views

Playing tic-tac-toe by submitting your moves in advance

Suppose that, instead of playing in your turn, you have to submit in advance, an ordered list of the 9 board positions. Then a computer plays for you by using, whenever it is your turn, the leftmost ...
6
votes
1answer
262 views

Summing numbers and then increasing used numbers

I was making a mathematical game (viewable here: www.michaelprimo.it/beta) where you have a 3x3 grid, one central yellow button with a generated number and the other eight blue buttons with clickable ...
8
votes
1answer
942 views

Heaps of marbles

Alice and Bob play the following game with two heaps of 10,000 and 20,000 marbles. Alice and Bob move alternatingly. Alice makes the first move. In every move, the active player may (i) either remove ...
40
votes
5answers
19k views

What is the optimal first move in tic-tac-toe?

I have been told that it is possible to guarantee no worse than a tie in normal 3x3 tic-tac-toe, but that the first move is very important. What is that important first move?
8
votes
2answers
525 views

Buzzword Bingo Boss Battle!

Two bosses of different companies take turns delivering long speeches. Every speech much “claim” at least one unused square by uttering the corresponding buzzword(s) in the table below. Victory is ...
31
votes
3answers
4k views

A lonely pawn on the chessboard

Alice and Bob and the referee Conny play the following game with a pawn on a standard $8\times8$ chessboard: In the beginning, Conny places the pawn into the center of a randomly chosen square. All $...
3
votes
2answers
257 views

Social Distancing L-Game

This is a variation of Edward De Bono’s famous L-game, but played on a 5x5 board (instead of 4x4) with social distancing rules in place. More specifically, two players (Blue and Orange) take turns ...
9
votes
2answers
417 views

Three way duel, which guns to choose?

Alice, Bob and Carole are involved in a game of three way duel. They take turns to shoot in the order of Alice-Bob-Carole-Alice-... until only one surviver is left standing. The rule is very simple: ...
8
votes
4answers
3k views

Thirteen coins game

There are $13$ coins arranged in a circular fashion. Andrew and Bill play a game with these rules: Andrew starts the game A player can remove $1$ or $2$ adjacent coins from the circle during his turn....
8
votes
5answers
554 views

Which gun is Alice's best choice?

Alice, Bob and Charles are involved in a deadly three way duel game. Before the game starts, the referee prepares three guns for the players to choose from. She randomly picks three guns from a very ...
3
votes
5answers
507 views

A Very Odd Game

Barry, John, and Caleb, all perfect logicians, were very bored one day and they decided to come up with a new game (they haven't got a name for that game yet). The rules were quite simple : The first ...
6
votes
2answers
239 views

Recreational checkers problem

Alberto places N checkers in a circle. Some, perhaps all, are black; the others are white. (The distribution of colors is random.) Betiil places new checkers between the pairs of adjacent checkers in ...
7
votes
1answer
251 views

A mix of 2048 and Match 3

I was playing a game and thought of this problem: Rules There are 4 distinct tiles on a $6\times6$ grid. The game starts out with one block on the board. You can shift all the tiles in one of the ...
2
votes
0answers
298 views

How do you force a win in 4x4x4 TicTacToe

I have read in the wikipedia page of TicTacToe that it is possible for the first player to force a win in a 4x4x4 board. I tried to find a strategy on how to do it online but failed. So, how do you ...
16
votes
2answers
673 views

Topological Nim

You and your friend's new favorite game is "topological nim": You take your favorite compact metric space $X$ and a radius $r$. Each player removes an open disk of radius $r$ from the space ...
22
votes
3answers
9k views

Can you Turn MI to MU?

Using the letters M, I, and U, which can be used to create words. Can you turn MI into MU using in each step one of the following rules: Insert a U to the end of a word ending in I. e.g: MI becomes ...
18
votes
1answer
552 views

Noughts and Crosses puzzle

Eques and Knott are playing a game of standard 3x3 Noughts and Crosses. At no stage of the game has Eques threatened to complete a row of three on his very next turn. Suddenly Knott realises he must ...
5
votes
2answers
241 views

Simple game of dice - what is the optimal strategy?

The game is pretty simple, whoever reaches 50 first wins, but there are a few important details: 2 players, one die. Players take turns. Rolled values are simply added up If you roll a 6, however, ...
5
votes
2answers
338 views

Achieve the best outcome by a tactical statement

This puzzle is taken from Schelling's Game Theory: How to Make Decisions by R.V. Dodge, in which bargaining power is gained, paradoxically, by burning bridges and removing options for oneself. Here it ...
7
votes
1answer
245 views

The sadistic chieftain and the lethal truel game

In an adventure to a remote island, you get caught by the xenophobic locals and are about to be executed. But the tribe chieftain, known for his sadistic taste, suddenly changes his mind. "I'll ...

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