The Element of Surprise in Timed Games

Luca de Alfaro, Marco Faella, Thomas A. Henzinger, Rupak Majumdar, and Marielle Stoelinga

We consider concurrent two-person games played in real time, in which the players decide both which action to play, and when to play it. Such timed games differ from untimed games in two essential ways. First, players can take each other by surprise, because actions are played with delays that cannot be anticipated by the opponent. Second, a player should not be able to win the game by preventing time from diverging. We present a model of timed games that preserves the element of surprise and accounts for time divergence in a way that treats both players symmetrically and applies to all omega-regular winning conditions. We prove that the ability to take each other by surprise adds extra power to the players. For the case that the games are specified in the style of timed automata, we provide symbolic algorithms for their solution with respect to all omega-regular winning conditions. We also show that for these timed games, memory strategies are more powerful than memoryless strategies already in the case of reachability objectives.

Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Concurrency Theory (CONCUR), Lecture Notes in Computer Science 2761, Springer, 2003, pp. 144-158.

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