(Pardon the terrible title. If you can think of a better one, feel free to edit.)

Technically, game theory consists of games and strategies. However, from the tag wikis, it looks like they are all the same.

The tag wikis:

  1. The tag: Puzzles that involve strategic decision making, usually involving either competitive or cooperative choices between a number of participants.

  2. The tag: A puzzle that asks for determining the winner in a (typically combinatorial) multi-player game.... The solution to a combinatorial two-player game puzzle usually consists of a full analysis of all game situations, by classifying them into "wins" and "losses" for either player.

  3. The tag: A puzzle whose solution is a methodological plan of action for realizing a specific goal as effectively as possible. The solution, rather than being an object or word or single action, specifies how to act in a multi-step interaction, basing each action off of previous actions not under your control.

All of them says, "There's a game. Find out if there is a strategy such that you/someone will win. If there is, find it." We shouldn't have three tags for basically the same thing.

There are several options:

  1. Make and synonyms of . This probably isn't a good idea, given that only has 9 questions.
  2. Make a synonym of . This would probably be the best idea.
  3. Make a synonym of .
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ The [strategy] tag does have broader applicability than just to games (e.g. this question couldn't really be described as a game). I think of [game-theory] as being for theoretical questions about solvability of games and [game] as being for actual puzzles involving playing games (a similar distinction as exists between the [cryptography] and [cryptograms] tags), but I'm not sure if this is how they're generally used here. $\endgroup$ Jun 9, 2015 at 17:49

1 Answer 1


All of the following is in my humble opinion.

I think that is a proper subset of and , and neither of the last contain the other. Since tags should only be made synonyms when they are about the same problems, none should be made synonyms.

A puzzle tagged should be asking for the outcome of a particular game under optimal play. This is of course part of what game theory is about, and it also involves determining winnings strategies.

The reason is not included in is that strategy problems can involve a single person trying to come up with a strategy, while or must involve multiple parties. The strategy tag is good for signaling that the problem will involve creative thought, or at least that there will be many seemingly possible ways to approach the problem.

But is not always about finding strategies or solving particular games. It also includes many other things which are in puzzle territory, like fair division, voting, and auctions. Granted, puzzles in these areas are far less common, but just in case more pop up, it useful to give them a label to help out the game theory enthusiasts out there who come to this site looking for puzzles that appeal to their interests.

  • $\begingroup$ Great answer. But regarding the second paragraph, in this meta post for what to do with tags that are subsets, the response was to make them synonyms. $\endgroup$
    – mmking
    Jun 10, 2015 at 17:58
  • $\begingroup$ @mmking The decision made in that response has since been overturned, see here. $\endgroup$ Jun 12, 2015 at 7:41
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for the meta post. $\endgroup$
    – mmking
    Jun 12, 2015 at 14:32

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