On the Complexity of Branching Games with Regular Conditions

Authors Marcin Przybylko, Michal Skrzypczak

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Marcin Przybylko
Michal Skrzypczak

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Marcin Przybylko and Michal Skrzypczak. On the Complexity of Branching Games with Regular Conditions. In 41st International Symposium on Mathematical Foundations of Computer Science (MFCS 2016). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 58, pp. 78:1-78:14, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2016)


Infinite duration games with regular conditions are one of the crucial tools in the areas of verification and synthesis. In this paper we consider a branching variant of such games - the game contains branching vertices that split the play into two independent sub-games. Thus, a play has the form of~an~infinite tree. The winner of the play is determined by a winning condition specified as a set of infinite trees. Games of this kind were used by Mio to provide a game semantics for the probabilistic mu-calculus. He used winning conditions defined in terms of parity games on trees. In this work we consider a more general class of winning conditions, namely those definable by finite automata on infinite trees. Our games can be seen as a branching-time variant of the stochastic games on graphs. We address the question of determinacy of a branching game and the problem of computing the optimal game value for each of the players. We consider both the stochastic and non-stochastic variants of the games. The questions under consideration are parametrised by the family of strategies we allow: either mixed, behavioural, or pure. We prove that in general, branching games are not determined under mixed strategies. This holds even for topologically simple winning conditions (differences of two open sets) and non-stochastic arenas. Nevertheless, we show that the games become determined under mixed strategies if we restrict the winning conditions to open sets of trees. We prove that the problem of comparing the game value to a rational threshold is undecidable for branching games with regular conditions in all non-trivial stochastic cases. In the non-stochastic cases we provide exact bounds on the complexity of the problem. The only case left open is the 0-player stochastic case, i.e. the problem of computing the measure of a given regular language of infinite trees.
  • stochastic games
  • meta-parity games
  • infinite trees
  • regular languages
  • parity automata


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