Oikonomou, VK; Jost, J

We introduce a new solution concept, called periodicity, for selecting optimal strategies in strategic form games. This periodicity solution concept yields new insight into nontrivial games. In mixed strategy strategic form games, periodic solutions yield values for the utility function of each player that are equal to the Nash equilibrium ones. In contrast to the Nash strategies, here the payoffs of each player are robust against what the opponent plays. Sometimes, periodicity strategies yield higher utilities, and sometimes the Nash strategies do, but often the utilities of these two strategies coincide. We formally define and study periodic strategies in two player perfect information strategic form games with pure strategies and we prove that every nontrivial finite game has at least one periodic strategy, with nontrivial meaning nondegenerate payoffs. In some classes of games where mixed strategies are used, we identify quantitative features. Particularly interesting are the implications for collective action games, since there the collective action strategy can be incorporated in a purely noncooperative context. Moreover, we address the periodicity issue when the players have a continuum set of strategies available.