What is “strategy”?A strategy is a plan of action designed toachieve a vision. It derives from the Greek"στρατηγία" (strategia), “command".People use strategy in many different areas oflife, from business to warfare; and there aremany games that people play to practicestrategy.
Opening Discussion• What are some ways that you get the things that you want?• Can you remember something that someone did that you think was a good strategy? What are some smart things you have seen people do?
Military strategyMilitary strategy is a set of ideas implemented by military organizations to pursuedesired strategic goals. When this term first appeared in use during the 18thcentury, was seen in its narrow sense as the "art of the general" the art ofarrangement of troops. Military strategy deals with the planning and conduct ofcampaigns, the movement and disposition of forces, and the deception of theenemy.
Business Strategy Strategic planning is an organizations process of defining its strategy, or direction, and making decisions on allocating its resources to pursue this strategy. In order to determine the direction of the organization, it is necessary to understand its current position and the possible avenues through which it can pursue a particular course of action. Generally, strategic planning deals with at least one of three key questions: 1. "What do we do?" 2. "For whom do we do it?" 3. "How do we excel?"
Game TheoryGame theory is a method of studying strategicdecision making. More formally, it is "thestudy of mathematical models of conflict andcooperation between intelligent rationaldecision-makers." An alternative term is“interactive decision theory”. Game theory ismainly used in economics, political science,and psychology, and other sciences, like logicand biology. The subject first addressed zero-sum games, such that one persons gainsexactly equal net losses of the otherparticipant(s). Today, however, game theoryapplies to a wide range of interactions, andhas developed into an umbrella term for thelogical side of science, to include both humanand non-humans, like computers.
What do you think?• Do you know of a great military strategy from history?• What do you think are some good strategies for a successful business?• Have you ever heard of “Game Theory”? Do you think it is possible to turn making good decisions into a science?
RiskRisk is a strategic board game, thatwas invented by French film directorAlbert Lamorisse and originallyreleased in 1957. Risk is a turn-basedgame for two to six players. Thestandard version is played on a boarddepicting a political map of the Earth,divided into forty-two territories,which are grouped into six continents.The primary object of the game is"world domination," or "to occupyevery territory on the board and in sodoing, eliminate all other players."Players control armies with which theyattempt to capture territories fromother players, with results determinedby dice rolls.
StarCraft StarCraft is a military science fiction real-time strategy video game developed by Blizzard Entertainment. The first game of the StarCraft series was released for Microsoft Windows on 31 March 1998. With more than 11 million copies sold worldwide as of February 2009, it is one of the best-selling games for the personal computer. Many of the industrys journalists have praised StarCraft as one of the best and most important video games of all time.In StarCraft, each player controls a whole army, and is able to tell each soldier what todo and where to go. Play usually ends when all of one player’s army has beeneliminated. StarCraft is particularly popular in South Korea, where players and teamsparticipate in professional competitions, earn sponsorships, and compete in televisedtournaments.
ChessChess is a two-player board game playedon a chessboard, a square-checkeredboard with 64 squares arranged in aneight-by-eight grid. It is one of theworlds most popular games, played bymillions of people worldwide.Chess is played with many differentpieces, but the most important piece isthe king. When one player captures theother’s king, they win the game. This iscalled “checkmate”.Originally from India, Chess isconsidered a classic game of strategy. InEnglish, people often use metaphorsfrom chess, such as “I’m just a pawn.”
What do you think?• Do you like to play strategy games? Which game do you like the best?• Can you play chess? How about Chinese chess (Xiangqi)?• What do you think of people who watch video games on television?• Do you think “world domination” is a good goal for a game, or should people pursue more peaceful goals?