Table of Contents
ISRN Operations Research
Volume 2013, Article ID 452162, 15 pages
Research Article

Dynamic Decision Making and Race Games

1Department of Economics, University of Nevada Las Vegas, 4504 Maryland Parkway, Las Vegas, NV 89154-6001, USA
2Department of Management, Entrepreneurship and Technology, University of Nevada Las Vegas, 4504 Maryland Parkway, Las Vegas, NV 89154-6001, USA

Received 14 June 2013; Accepted 7 July 2013

Academic Editors: I. Ahmad and G. Dósa

Copyright © 2013 Shipra De and Darryl A. Seale. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Frequent criticism of dynamic decision making research pertains to the overly complex nature of the decision tasks used in experimentation. To address such concerns, we study dynamic decision making with respect to a simple race game, which has a computable optimal strategy. In this two-player race game, individuals compete to be the first to reach a designated threshold of points. Players alternate rolling a desired quantity of dice. If the number one appears on any of the dice, the player receives no points for his turn; otherwise, the sum of the numbers appearing on the dice is added to the player's score. Results indicate that although players are influenced by the game state when making their decisions, they tend to play too conservatively in comparison to the optimal policy and are influenced by the behavior of their opponents. Improvement in performance was negligible with repeated play. Survey data suggests that this outcome could be due to inadequate time for learning or insufficient player motivation. However, some players approached optimal heuristic strategies, which perform remarkably well.