Video Source:

The Prisoner effect/dilemma is used in most games (especially games that are online). It is a choice related issue that can change the end result of a game depending on which each character chose.

The example we know shows us how the dilemma works in jail, basically stating that each person that got arrested has a choice of two options; to either stay silent or tell them it wasn’t you and blame it on your friend. If one of the prisoners accuses their friend and the other one stay silent, the one that stayed silent would get 3 years in jail and the other one would go free, whereas if they both stay silent they will both go to prison but only for 1 year. If both prisoners accuse each other they will go to prison for 2 years each. Below is an easier way of understanding.

Prisoner 1     Prisoner 2            Prisoner 1     Prisoner 2        Total

Choice                                                       Years in Jail

Accuse P2     Stay Silent              0 years           3 years        3 Years

Stay Silent    Accuse P1               3 years            0 years       3 Years

Stay Silent    Stay Silent             1 year               1 year         2 years

Accuse P2      Accuse P1               2 Years            2 Years      4 Years

As you can see the better option would be to both stay silent because the result ends up spending a year in prison each, however, if you know that the other person will stay silent you could accuse them and go free therefore making the other person deal with the consequence of having to spend 3 years in jail.

The reason we use this ‘Prisoner Dilemma’ is because we don’t know what our team members or the other team are thinking and this Dilemma comes into effect whilst playing games such as Grand Theft Auto 5, Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, League of Legends, Elder Scrolls Online, Star Wars Battlefront, StarCraft etc.

I mainly understand ‘The Prisoner Dilemma’ in the game Grand Theft Auto 5 (when you play it online). When I have been online people have walked up to my character and tried to speak to me or contact me or invite me to a mission; the prisoner dilemma comes to play as I have the choice to either ignore him/join him and the other choice is to kill him, vice versa he has the same options. I choose to kill as you don’t want to risk it therefore they died and lost some of their money. Here are some examples of Grand Theft Auto Bounty Kills (Bounty Kills count as the prisoner dilemma as you have the choice to ignore the person or go after them to kill them).

Grand Theft Auto 5 Bounty Kills

Video Source:

Overall I think that this effect can occur randomly and the end result will be unknown unless it is planned as a team. You have to go with your instinct and choose whether to silent and ignore everyone or kill your enemies. (Revenge is also a possibility).