Game analysis - Transactional Analysis


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According to Eric Berne, a game is a series of ulterior transactions with a gimmick , leading to a usually well concealed but well defined payoff.

Game analysis - Transactional Analysis

  1. 1. Game Analysis
  2. 2. Prepared By Manu Melwin Joy Research Scholar School of Management Studies CUSAT, Kerala, India. Phone – 9744551114 Mail – Kindly restrict the use of slides for personal purpose. Please seek permission to reproduce the same in public forms and presentations.
  3. 3. Contents – Part I • Definition of games. • Typical features of games. • Different degree of games. • Why people play games? • Advantages of playing games. • Positive payoff of playing games.
  4. 4. Contents – Part II • Life Games. • Marital Games. • Party Games. • Sexual Games. • Underworld Games. • Consulting Room Games. • Good Games.
  5. 5. Definition of game In simple language, “A game is a process of doing something with an ulterior motive that: – Is outside adult awareness. – Does not become explicit until the participants switch the way they are behaving and – Results in everyone feeling confused, misunderstood and wanting to blame the other person.
  6. 6. Formula G Berne discovered that every game goes through a sequence of six stages. Con + Gimmick = Response Switch Cross up Payoff He called this sequence Formula G or Game formula.
  7. 7. Formula G • Con – it is delivered non-verbally. • Gimmick – It is a scripty weak spot that leads someone to buy into someone else’s con. • Response – This stage of a game consists of a series of transactions. At social level, these transactions seem like straight forward exchange of information. But at psychological level, they repeat the Con-Gimmick exchange that opened the game.
  8. 8. Formula G • Switch – It happens when one player changes his role. • Cross up – The confusion happening during the change of role is cross up. • Payoff – Both players collect their payoff of racket feeling.
  9. 9. Definition of game According to Ian Stewart and Vann Jones, “ A game includes those sequences that follow all stages of Formula G, including the switch of roles and moment of confusion represented by switch and cross up.”
  10. 10. Definition of game Berne defined games differently at different stages of his thinking. “What ever fits the Formula G is a game and whatever does not fit is not a game.” - What do you say after you say hello. “ A game is a series of ulterior transactions with a gimmick , leading to a usually well concealed but well defined payoff.” – Principles of group treatment.
  11. 11. Typical features of games • Games are repetitive. • Games are played without adult awareness. • Games always end up with the players experience racket feeling. • Games entail an exchange of ulterior transactions between the players. • Games always include moment of surprise and confusion.
  12. 12. Different degrees of games Games can be played at different degrees of intensity. First level game – it has an outcome which the player is willing to share with her social circle. These make a big proportion of the time structuring at parties and social gatherings.
  13. 13. Different degrees of games Second degree game bring heavier outcomes, of a kind which the player would rather not make public in her social circle. Third degree game, in Berne’s words is one which is played for keeps and which ends in surgery, the courtroom or the morgue.
  14. 14. Why people play games? • In playing games, we are following outdated strategies. • Game playing was one of the devices we adopted as young children to get what we wanted from the world. • But in adult life, we have other, more effective options.
  15. 15. Why people play games? • People play games to further their life script. • Berne suggested the sequence by which we achieve this. • At the payoff of every game, the player experiences a racket feeling. • Each time he does this, he can store the feeling away as a stamp.
  16. 16. Why people play games? • When the game player has built up a big enough collection of stamps, he feels justified in cashing it in for whatever negative script payoff he decided upon as a child. • Thus each person chooses her games to yield the kind of stamps that will advance her towards the script ending she has decided upon. • As usual with scripts, the script story may be played through in miniature many times during the players life. • People chose the degree of their games to suit the degree of their script payoff.
  17. 17. Advantages of Game playing In Games people play, Eric Berne listed six advantages of game playing. – Internal psychological advantage – maintain stability of my set of script beliefs. – External psychological advantage – Avoid situations that would challenge my frame of reference. – Internal social advantage –Games offer a framework for pseudo intimate socializing indoors or in privacy.
  18. 18. Advantages of Game playing – External social advantage – Gaming gives us a theme for gossiping in our wider social circle. – Biological advantage – It satisfy structure and stroke hunger. – Existential advantage – This is the function of the game in confirming life position.
  19. 19. Positive payoff of games • John James has developed the idea that games have real advantages as well as scripty ones. • He points out that every game brings a positive payoff as well as a negative payoff. • A game represents the child’s best strategy to getting something from the world. When we play games in adulthood, we are attempting to meet a genuine child need. It is just that the means of satisfying that need are outdated and manipulative.
  20. 20. Life Games • All games have an important and probably decisive influence on the destinies of the players under ordinary social conditions. • But some offer more opportunities than others for life long careers and are more likely to involve relatively innocent bystanders. • This group may be conveniently called Life Games.
  21. 21. Alcoholic • This is usually a three handed game. • The central role is that of the Alcoholic – the one who is it. • The chief supporting role is that of Persecutor, typically played by a member of opposite sex, usually the spouse. • The third role is that of Rescuer, usually played by someone of the same sex.
  22. 22. Debtor • Debtor is more than a game. It is a script, a plan for a whole lifetime. • Try and Collect (TAC) is a mild money game commonly played by married couples. • The obvious antithesis of TAC is to request immediate payment in cash.
  23. 23. Kick Me • This is played by men whose social manner is equivalent to wearing a sign that reads “ Please don’t kick me”. • The temptation is almost irresistible and when the natural result follows, he cries piteously, “ But the sign says don’t kick me.” • Then he adds incredulously “ Why does this always happens to me?”
  24. 24. Now I Have Got You ,You Son Of A Bitch • NIGYSOB is a two handed game in which the aim is justification. • The best antithesis is correct behavior. • In everyday life, business dealings with NIGYSOB players are always calculated risks.
  25. 25. See What You Made Me Do • In Its classical form, this is a marital game and in fact is a “three star marriage buster” but it may also be played between parents and children and in working life. • The antithesis for SWYMD is to leave the player alone or to throw the decision back to him.
  26. 26. Marital Games • Almost any game can form the scaffolding for married life and family living. • Some of these games are tolerated longer, under the legal force of contractual intimacy. • Marital games can only be arbitrarily separated from sexual games .
  27. 27. Corner • Corner illustrates more clearly than most games their manipulative aspect and their function as barriers to intimacy. • Paradoxically, it consists of a disingenuous refusal to play the game of another.
  28. 28. Courtroom • Courtroom is essentially three handed, with a plaintiff, a defendant and a Judge, represented by a husband, a wife and the therapist. • In everyday form, courtroom is easily observed in children as a three handed game between two siblings and a parent.
  29. 29. Frigid Woman • In this game, the husband makes advances to his wife and is repulsed. • After repeated attempts, he is told that all men are beasts, he doesn’t really love her and all he is interested is in sex. • When he resigns, wife tempts him and the game continues.
  30. 30. Harried • This is played by a housewife who is proficient in ten or twelve different occupations. • The thesis of this game is that she takes on everything that comes and even asks for more. • This ultimately results in her burn out and being ready for hospitalized.
  31. 31. If It Weren’t For You • Briefly, a woman marries a domineering man so that he will restrict her activities and thus keep her from getting into a situation which frighten her. • She takes advantage of the situation to complain about the restrictions , which makes her spouse feel uneasy and gives her all sorts of advantages.
  32. 32. Look How Hard I Have Tried • This is a three handed game played by a married couple with a psychiatrist. • Husband is bucking for a divorce and he comes to the therapist to demonstrate that he is cooperating. • He ends up by saying “ Look how hard I have tried” and ask for divorce.
  33. 33. Sweet Heart • Husband exposes the deficiencies of the wife and save her from embarrassment of having to expose them herself. • He ends the comment by saying “ Isn’t that right, sweetheart?”.
  34. 34. Party Games • Parties are for pastimes but as acquaintance ripens, games begin to emerge. • Four typical games which are played in social situations are given.
  35. 35. Ain’t It Awful • Nowadays is a punitive parental pastime (Ex : Juvenile delinquency). • Broken Skin is an adult variation with the slogan “what a pity”. • Water cooler is the child pastime with the slogan “ Look what they are doing to us now”.
  36. 36. Blemish • It is played from the depressive Child position “ I am no good” which is protectively transformed into the Parental position “ They are no good”. • Blemish provides negative reassurance to the players.
  37. 37. Schlemiel • The Schlemiel makes the first move to embarrass the other person. • If he shows his anger, schlemiel can feel justified in returning the resentment. • If he restrains himself, he can go on enjoying his opportunities. • The antithesis is not offering the demanded absolution.
  38. 38. Why Don’t You – Yes But • It occupies a special place in game analysis because it was the original stimulus for the concept of games. • The agent presents a problem and others start presenting solutions. • Agent objects and all the others give up feeling bad.
  39. 39. Sexual Games • Sexual games are played to exploit or fight off sexual impulses. • These are all perversions of the sexual instincts in which the satisfaction is displaced from the sexual act to the crucial transactions which constitute the payoff of the game.
  40. 40. Let You And Him Fight • This may be a maneuver, a ritual or a game. • IN each case, the psychology is feminine. • As a maneuver, it is romantic. As a ritual, it is tragic. As a game, it is comic.
  41. 41. Perversion • Heterosexual perversions such a fetishism, sadism and masochism are symptomatic of a confused child and are treated accordingly. • Their transactional aspects as manifested in actual sexual situations can be death with by means of game analysis.
  42. 42. Rapo • This is a game played between a man and a woman. • First degree Rapo or kiss off is popular at social gatherings and consists essentially of mild flirtation. As soon has he has committed, the game is over. She signs off. • Second degree Rapo or indignation happens when she draws satisfaction from rejecting him. • Third degree Rapo is a vicious game which ends in murder, suicide or courtroom.
  43. 43. The Stocking Game • This is a game of Rapo family. in it the most obvious characteristic is exhibitionism, which is hysterical in nature. • Women expose themselves to arouse men and make other women angry. • Any confrontation is met with protestation of innocence or counter accusations.
  44. 44. Uproar • The classical game is played between domineering fathers and teenage daughters, where there is a sexually inhibited mother. • Father comes home from work and finds fault with daughter, who answers impudently. • Their voice raise and clash becomes more acute. The end of a game of uproar is marked by a slamming door.
  45. 45. Underworld Games • With the infiltration of the helping professions into the courts, probation departments and correctional facilities, and with the increasing sophistication of criminologist and law enforcement officers, those concerned should be aware of the more common games prevalent in the underworld, both in prison and out of it.
  46. 46. Cops and Robbers • Because many criminals are cope haters, they seem to get as much satisfaction from outwitting the police as from their criminal gains often more. • The childhood prototype of this game is hide and seek. • The thesis of the game is “see if you can catch me”.
  47. 47. How Do You Get Out Of Here • Inmates who really want to free will find out how to comply with the authorities so as to be released at the earliest possible moment. • But at the critical point, they sabotage themselves so as not be released. • This is played in prisons and state hospitals.
  48. 48. Lets Pull A Fast One On Joey • The first move is for Black to tell White that dumb honest Joey is just waiting to be taken. • If White were completely honest, he back off or warn Joey but he does nothing. • Just as Joey is about to pay off, something goes wrong and White finds that his investment is gone. • Then White, who was playing his own rules in his own honest way, finds that he has to play Joey’s rules ,and they hurt.
  49. 49. Consulting Room Games • Games that are tenaciously placed in the therapeutic situations are the most important ones for the professional analyst to be aware of. • They can be most readily studies first hand in the consulting room.
  50. 50. Greenhouse • Recent graduates present a so called genuine feelings to the group. • The reactions of the other members are received very solemnly. • A questioning intervention by the therapist may be strongly resented.
  51. 51. I’M Only Trying To Help You • Therapist gives some advice to the client. He returns and reports that the suggestions did not have the desired outcome. • The therapist shrugs off this failure with a feeling of resignation and tries again. • One day, he cries out in rage “ But I was only trying to help you!”.
  52. 52. Indigence • Indigents go from agency to agency seeking welfare funds. • Even though they are supposed to look for other jobs, they devote actually little time for it and tend to remain in their current position. • Antithesis consists in withholding the benefits.
  53. 53. Peasant • Socially, peasant is played in an innocent and a dissembled form, both with the motto “Gee You are wonderful, Mr. Murgatroyd”. • The antithesis for the game is that therapist steadfastly refuses to give advice.
  54. 54. Psychiatry • The patient carefully picks up weak psychoanalysts, moving from one to another, demonstrating that they cannot be cured and meanwhile learning to play a sharper and sharper game of psychiatry. • The antithesis is the view point that “I treat them, but God cures them”.
  55. 55. Stupid • In its milder form, the thesis of “Stupid “ is “ I laugh with you at my own clumsiness and stupidity”. • Seriously disturbed people may play it in a sullen way which says “ I am stupid, that is the way I am, so do me something.”
  56. 56. Wooden Leg • The thesis for wooden leg is “What do you expect of a man with a wooden leg?” • The person with real, exaggerated or imaginary disability is content with his lot and never tries to rise above his disability.
  57. 57. Good Games • A good game might be described as one whose social contribution overweighs the complexity of its motivations, particularly if the player has come in terms with those motivations without futility or cynicism. • A good game contributes both to the well being of the other players and to the unfolding of the one who is it.
  58. 58. Busman’s Holiday • This is more of a pastime than a game. • It becomes a game if work is secondary to some ulterior motive and is undertaken merely as a show in order to accomplish something else. • Even under those circumstance, it keeps its constructive quality.
  59. 59. Cavalier • Upon encountering a suitable female subject, Mr. White take every opportunity to remark upon her good qualities, never transgressing the limits appropriate to her station of life. • The object is not to seduce but to exhibit his virtuosity in the art of effective compliment.
  60. 60. Happy To Help • This game is the basis of a large proportion of public relations. But the customers are glad to become involved, and it is perhaps the most pleasant and constructive of the commercial games. • The choice of HTH removes some of the discredit since thee are so many unpleasant ways of competing available.
  61. 61. Homely Sage • After retirement, people move to small town and hold a responsible position. • There it soon becomes known that people can go to him with their problems of whatever kind and he will help them himself. • He soon finds his place in the new environment as Homely Sage.
  62. 62. Thank You
  63. 63. Other TA topics available on slideshare 1. Strokes - 2. Games People Play - games-people-play. 3. Structural Analysis - 4. What is TA? - 5. Cycles of Development - developement-pamela-levin-transactional-analysis. 6. Stages of Cure - 7. Transactions - 8. Time Structuring - 9. Life Position - 10. Autonomy - 11. Structural Pathology - 12. Game Analysis - 13. Integrated Adult - 14. Stroke Economy - 33826702.