On Winning Fast in Avoider-Enforcer Games

  • János Barát
  • Miloš Stojaković


We analyze the duration of the unbiased Avoider-Enforcer game for three basic positional games. All the games are played on the edges of the complete graph on $n$ vertices, and Avoider's goal is to keep his graph outerplanar, diamond-free and $k$-degenerate, respectively. It is clear that all three games are Enforcer's wins, and our main interest lies in determining the largest number of moves Avoider can play before losing.

Extremal graph theory offers a general upper bound for the number of Avoider's moves. As it turns out, for all three games we manage to obtain a lower bound that is just an additive constant away from that upper bound. In particular, we exhibit a strategy for Avoider to keep his graph outerplanar for at least $2n-8$ moves, being just $6$ short of the maximum possible. A diamond-free graph can have at most $d(n)=\lceil\frac{3n-4}{2}\rceil$ edges, and we prove that Avoider can play for at least $d(n)-3$ moves. Finally, if $k$ is small compared to $n$, we show that Avoider can keep his graph $k$-degenerate for as many as $e(n)$ moves, where $e(n)$ is the maximum number of edges a $k$-degenerate graph can have.

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