## Wheelin' & Dealin'!

Most of you would have seen the game show “Deal or No Deal” on television at some time. If you haven’t it is a simple game where the contestant has a chance to win one million dollars. The play requires the selection of a single briefcase with an unknown amount of money in it, and then the player must select other briefcases to open, while the host tempts them to quit early by offering them a cash payout. How would you do? Would you get the million? Let’s find out:

This is the American version of this game (“Banker’s Deal”), but it is functionally equivalent to the Australian game show (the Australian version is a copy of the American show). This game is a simple of game of luck, and thus, is all about probability. The choice to make a deal – or not to make a deal, is all about deciding when the chance of what you could earn is outweighed by the guarantee of what you are offered immediately. After you have played a few games, try to calculate what the banker will offer, before he makes his offer. There is a mathematical term for what is being done with this offer – it is called the “Expected Value”. When you know how it is calculated, you should then play a game alway the way through, using your knowledge of expected value to maximise your winnings. This would be a suitable topic for a page of your journal to demonstrate you understand how probability is calculated and how it can be applied to a real-world situation.

See you in class.

**Explore posts in the same categories:**Mathematics

February 6, 2008 at 3:19 AM

I got up to $285000 then got greedy and lost it all, I only had 2 high-value cases left and 2 low-value cases left and i chose both the high ones in my next turn leaving me with the 2 lows. What are the chances of that?

February 20, 2008 at 8:36 PM

Good Question, Han –

What is the probability of that?