Distributed Multi-Player Bandits - a Game of Thrones Approach

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 31 (NeurIPS 2018)

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Ilai Bistritz, Amir Leshem


We consider a multi-armed bandit game where N players compete for K arms for T turns. Each player has different expected rewards for the arms, and the instantaneous rewards are independent and identically distributed. Performance is measured using the expected sum of regrets, compared to the optimal assignment of arms to players. We assume that each player only knows her actions and the reward she received each turn. Players cannot observe the actions of other players, and no communication between players is possible. We present a distributed algorithm and prove that it achieves an expected sum of regrets of near-O\left(\log^{2}T\right). This is the first algorithm to achieve a poly-logarithmic regret in this fully distributed scenario. All other works have assumed that either all players have the same vector of expected rewards or that communication between players is possible.