- Inventor of Game: Unknown
The Peace-War Game was usually played by academics via computer simulation to study cooperation and aggression strategies. Due to the peacemakers becoming richer over time, it was clear that making war had greater costs than some assumed. Many game theories can open our eyes to things that surprise us like this. The only strategy that acquired wealth rapidly was “Genghis Khan,” who was historically a constant aggressor that made war constantly to gain resources. Using this strategy could benefit players in simulation. However, it was simply not feasible to do this as you risk a lot more than you gain unless you can guarantee victory.
That led to the “provokable nice guy” strategy, which is a peacemaker until they are attacked. Players will continue to gain wealth doing this by cooperating with each other, which then eats away at the potential profits of constant aggressors. The best deterministic strategies were usually reciprocal altruism, tit for tat, and the provokable nice guy. Therefore, the best strategy to take, at least initially, is to make peace. After this, you can switch it up, where you might do “tit for tat with forgiveness.” As in, you make war then on the next move make peace anyway. That allows players to escape from wasting resources on retribution cycles.