Very asymmetric marking games

Henry Kierstead, Daqing Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Scopus citations


We investigate a competitive version of the coloring number of a graph G = (V, E). For a fixed linear ordering L of V let s (L) be one more than the maximum outdegree of G when G is oriented so that x ← y if x < L y. The coloring number of G is the minimum of s (L) over all such orderings. The (a, b)-marking game is played on a graph G = (V, E) as follows. At the start all vertices are unmarked. The players, Alice and Bob, take turns playing. A play consists of Alice marking a unmarked vertices or Bob marking b unmarked vertices. The game ends when there are no remaining unmarked vertices. Together the players create a linear ordering L of V defined by x < y if x is marked before y. The score of the game is s (L). The (a, b)-game coloring number of G is the minimum score that Alice can obtain regardless of Bob's strategy. The usual (1, 1)-marking game is well studied and there are many interesting results. Our main result is that if G has an orientation with maximum outdegree k then the (k, 1)-game coloring number of G is at most 2k + 2. This extends a fundamental result on the (1, 1)-game coloring number of trees. We also construct examples to show that this bound is tight for many classes of graphs. Finally we prove bounds on the (a, 1)-game coloring number when a < k.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)93-107
Number of pages15
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 1 2005


  • Coloring number
  • Competitive coloring
  • Planar graph

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Algebra and Number Theory
  • Geometry and Topology
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Very asymmetric marking games'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this