Single-round prisoner’s dilemma

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Pay-off table

A cooperates

A defects

B cooperates

A gets 1 year
B gets 1 year

A goes free
B gets 3 years

B defects

A gets 3 years
B goes free

A gets 2 years
B gets 2 years

In which the curmudgeonly old sod puts the world to rights.
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To be contrasted with iterated prisoner’s dilemma, a single-round prisoner’s dilemma is a one-off game of prisoner’s dilemma, where there is no chance of getting your own back against a defector in the next round. Because there won’t be a next round. The payoff is thus per the table set out below, and the most rational course of action is to defect.

See also