Changing the game by playing it

I don’t want to belong to any club that will accept me as a member!

Groucho Marx famously said that he would not want to be a member of any club that would want him as a member. This is a good example of how playing a game can change the game itself.

Groucho saw that their were some exclusive clubs around that he would want to be a member of but that as soon as he joined they would no longer be as exclusive. By playing the game he has changed the payoffs.

When you are thinking about a game that you might wish to play then always think how your involvement might change the game.

Another twist on this idea is that bringing another player into a game that you are already playing will change the game and might improve it for you. Perhaps if Groucho was already a member of an average club then he could improve it by persuading some high profile friends to join then he might have said:

I want to join a club that gets too good for me after I’ve joined!

I hope you get the idea but I’m sure you can see why Groucho was a superstar comedian and I’m not!

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