Vivid is going to create a board game based on the BBC game show The Kids Are All Right. This follows Vivid’s board game based on Golden Balls.


Can I just take a moment to complain about the final game in Golden Balls? I watched one episode when I was in England last summer.

In the final game, each player has to decide whether to “split” or “steal”. If you both split, you both get half the money. If you both steal, neither gets any money. But if one steals and the other splits, one gets all the money and the other gets none.

As the Wikipedia entry notes, this is a weak Nash equilibrium. It is always better to split than to steal, since the difference between $10,000 and $20,000 is far less than the difference between $0 and $10,000 .

Furthermore, two observations:

1) If your opponent chooses to steal, there is nothing you can do: you’re not getting any money. The only thing you can do is deny her the money in return, which doesn’t do you any good.

2) From the point of view of the game show, they lose all $20,000 if either player chooses split, and lose nothing only if both players choose steal. That sounds like another good reason to choose split.

In fact, announce this to my opponent, explaining that if they choose to steal, there is nothing you can do about it, but you’d far rather one of you have the money than neither of you. Furthermore, if one player steals and the other splits, that you both should promise now to split the money in any case, rather than risk the possibility of getting nothing at all.

Anyhow, I just think the game could have been designed more interestingly, that’s all.