If I had to guess, the reasoning behind it is to nudge the game closer to a ‘true’ prisoner’s dillemma (trying to work out if your opponent is willing to cooperate, rather taking focus away from it towards the shallower problem of trying to work out if your opponent is a copy of you)
I agree, and this design avoids that problem, but seems to introduce a much larger one, assuming the intent also includes measuring bots on their ability to survive in progressively more “difficult” bot mixes, which “Darwin” seems to imply.
This choice also nudges me from “has noodled around the idea of hosting a similar competition many times and probably won’t” to “same, but slightly more likely to actually do it”. :D
My suggestion for a future Darwin Game tournament is to get rid of the 0, 1, 4, and 5 moves, and leave 2 and 3 as the only legal moves. Serious bots generally don’t need or use the other moves, so they mostly just make you add annoying special case logic to get a few more points out of GoofBots in the early game.
It’s a good point but in the original Darwin Game story, the opening sequence 2, 0, 2 was key to the plot.