One of the more odd books on my shelf currently is The Compleat Strategyst: Being a Primer on the Theory of Games Strategy by J.D. Williams. It has a rather bland cover, and its writing style is rather quirky. You have to be patient and give the read some time to get into his writing style and realize the value of the content within. Though it was written in 1954 and revised 1982, the book is still an informative foray into the discussion of Game Theory.

Game theory is the study of strategic decision making. Specifically, it is “the study of mathematical models of conflict and cooperation between intelligent rational decision-makers.”

Or as the author describes Game Theory,

If this is your first encounter with the unlikely request of nouns, the sole reaction is probably: Why? Well, the idea takes is name from the circumstance that the study of games is a useful and usable starting point in the study of strategy. (Introduction of The Complete Strategyst)

Game Theory and Game Design are not the same thing, but there are relationships that might interest you. If you have a desire to go deep into the rabbit hole of the math below the surface of games and how the understanding of games can impact real world decision-making, then this book might be worth your time and interest.

In your study of games or game design, have you delved into the world of Game Theory?

On My Shelf: The Compleat Strategyst

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