I've always loved Liar Game, but then I realized something: the Liar Game itself is an analogy for life. Those who lie take advantage of others and earn money, and those who get taken advantage of suffer horribly. BUT there are those who use their winnings for the greater good and help everybody out.
It's a bit more than that. One of the fundamental questions of game theory (and/or evolution) was the existence of altruistic behavior. One of the traits of almost every group oriented Liar Game is that there's a temptation for an individual to screw over others to try to do better - but the ultimate strategy inevitably requires cooperation of many individuals. The Liar Games are like life in that you can get ahead in the short-term by acting selfishly, but longer term, persistent results are achieved only by working together. The early chapters covered this pretty thoroughly, and now the primary focus is investigating the different types of cooperative organizations - the classic enlightened self-interest argument from Nao versus the authoritative style from Yokoma, versus the (religious) zealotry of Harimoto.
The part about Harimoto also showcases the fact that said religious zealotry, while possibly toxic, can and was meant to be used for good. We see the same thing happening in real life.
Also, the smuggling game is too reminiscent of the real life situation of North/South Korea to be chance. The North is an efficient, brutal regime ruled by fear by one Supreme Leader who makes all the decisions, while the South is squabbling democracy that nonetheless win the day with cooperation (and have members looking for 'unification' and others just trying to beat the other side).