I’ve come up with a twist to the Rock, Paper, Scissors game, which I wanted to share (and before anyone says anything, yes, I am a nerd). In a nutshell, you play the game with tennis scoring and serving rules.
Regular readers of my blog will know my hero, Dr Sheldon Cooper, is a huge fan of the Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock game. My variant is far less complex, but still adds an extra layer into the complexity of this (and takes a lot longer than the normal one-off game too – good for entertaining kids on long car journeys).
I must’ve first come up with this a good 15 years ago or more, but it was only on Sunday while sitting on a train and teaching it to Mrs MSE I thought to blog it (she enjoyed it, but one match was enough for her).
Rock, Paper, Scissors Tennis – the rules
The raw game works as normal, so on a count of three, each of the two players does a sign for either rock, paper or scissors. Scissors beat (cuts) paper, paper beats (wraps round) rock and rock beats (crushes) scissors.
It’s scored just like tennis. Each game you alternate who the ‘server’ is. As in tennis, this gives an innate advantage – here it’s the fact that if both players come up with the same thing (eg, two scissors), the server wins. Thus the object is for the non-serving player to attempt to ‘break serve’ (win against the serve).
If the scoring gets to deuce (at 40-40), then just like tennis you play advantage until one of the players is two clear.
Sets are played to three – with tie-breaks at 3-3. While in tennis a set is played to six, I suggest in this you play to three, but you must win by two clear games.
If you reach 3-3 in games, you play a tie-break, which is the first to seven, but you must be two clear at that point or you play on.
Again, just as with tennis, the serving alternates; the first player only serves once, then the opponent twice, from then on it alternates with two each.
In most games (as in close-fought tennis matches) you will end up with the tie-break, and that can be tense.
For those of you still reading, I hope you’ll give it a try and find it a nerdvana of tension. Let me know.