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<a novref=true text=@key href=pattern-betting.html>Betting</a>


Investing resources in the likelihood of an outcome.

Betting is the act of risking resources for the chance of winning more resources than was used. The proportions between what is gained and what is risked is linked to the perceived probability of winning, but in the case where Betting is done by players this does not have to be close to the real probability.

Example: Roulette is a typical example where the exchanges rate between bets and rewards are open and the probability for each outcome is static. The proportions between investments and rewards are tilted in the house's favor and the knowledge of this and the probabilities is easily available.

Example: betting in Poker is based on the cards held and the actions of other players. The proportions between risk and reward in Poker are not fixed but vary due to the willingness of all players to bet.

Using the pattern

The main design choice when explicitly supporting Betting in games is to choose whether player bet against a Dedicated Game Facilitator, usually called the house, or against each other.

Betting against a Dedicated Game Facilitator is usually based on Luck to ensure Player Balance between different game sessions. The main design requirement for betting against the house is to calculate the probabilities of the actions that are to be bet on. Knowledge of these probabilities can usually be deducted for actions based on Randomness, but as players also can do this the information is typically not held secret. Rather, the proportions of risk and reward are set so that either the game is balanced between players in Multiplayer Games or unbalanced in favor of the house in games where players play against the Dedicated Game Facilitator.

Betting against each other causes players to be in Conflict with each other. It can reduce the influence of Luck as Imperfect Information may give different players different advantages.


Betting provides ways of changing Ownership based on Transfer of Control events decided by some outcome. Betting is often used to create Meta Games of games by giving the original games Extra-Game Consequences based upon Gain Ownership goals. When these Meta Games are Player Defined Goals basically any activity can become a game although with serious Extra-Game Consequences and thereby Emotional Immersion.

Regardless if the Betting is an integral part of the game or in a Meta Game that is a Self-Facilitated Games, the placement of Resources on bets are Investments that determines the sizes of the Rewards, and the activity therefore one of Resource Management. Betting differs from Bidding in that the Resources used do not have a possibility of being returned and that the gains in Betting are of the same type as what was bet. In Quick Games of Betting the Resources usually move between players through a Tournament style of playing, and as the Resources risked and gained are of the same type, and often the exact same Resources, the system is a Closed Economy.

Betting is usually based on players' not having full predictabilityof the outcome and Delayed Effects. As such the action is one of Risk/Reward and gives Anticipation and Tension due to Hovering Closures.

The main skills required to gain Game Mastery in Betting is the Strategic Knowledge of the predictability in the game and, for Multiplayer Games, being able to deduct the tacticsof other players, e. g. by reading other players' body language or playing style. Bluffing is also an important aspect of Betting skill.


Instantiates: Meta Games, Conflict, Emotional Immersion, Anticipation, Closed Economies, Resource Management, Transfer of Control, Investments, Rewards, Game Mastery, Player Defined Goals, Extra-Game Consequences, Risk/Reward, Bluffing, Luck, Delayed Effects, Hovering Closures, Tension

Modulates: Bidding, Resources, Gain Ownership

Instantiated by: Gain Ownership, Ownership

Modulated by: Predictable Consequences, Strategic Knowledge, Self-Facilitated Games, Tournaments, Quick Games, Dedicated Game Facilitators, Imperfect Information, Randomness

Potentially conflicting with:

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(C) Æliens 04/09/2009

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