Batman Gambit / Tabletop Games

  • In Warhammer 40,000: The Eldar specialize in reading the various futures that arise from each course of action, they know exactly how to maneuver their enemies into doing what they want.
  • The "Social Combat" rules in the New World of Darkness allow someone to do this. Between Sway (persuading or manipulating others), Anticipation (predicting people or events) and Setup (organising people in order to set events in motion), it is possible to make such plans (or retroactively work them in after the fact).
  • A good Tabletop RPG Game Master will do this to some extent to prevent things from going Off the Rails without the players feeling Railroaded. Have the players decided to take the left hand path or a right hand path? Doesn't matter. The Bandits just happened to set up the ambush on whichever route the players choose.
    • Sometimes, this is referred to as the "Schrodinger's Character" tactic when applied to characters (playing at the idea that the players don't know till they check the proverbial box). The GM sets up a group of potential targets (such as who among a group of NPCs committed a murder) but whichever one the characters choose ends up being the guilty party.
    • The tactic is also handy for situations where the characters have done something to critically undermine the plot (murdered a critical NPC, misinterpreted the villain and sided with him, etc). The GM goes along and keeps working on the fly to make their accidents seem like the plan all along.
  • In the card game Werewolf, Mafia, Doppelganger, or whatever you want to call it (pretty much all the same), there is one option that can put all of the suspicion off of an attacking player - choosing to attack themselves. If this player can manipulate the nurse/haywitch/whatever to protect them for that round, then they'll be safe, and probably in a good position to win. However, this is very risky, and if it doesn't succeed, then they immediately lose.
  • In basically any strategy game reliant on trading and resource management, such as Settlers of Catan, players who know each other well depend on these. Players depend on their friends acting in the way they usually do, and so offer trades in such a way that it seems nearly pointless, but in fact is a necessary step toward victory.