To win at rock paper scissors you can’t just rely on luck. It goes beyond being lucky, here are some techniques and strategies to help you win more consistently at Rock Paper Scissors.
Men vs. Women
On the first throw Men tend to pick rock as their first throw, while women usually throw paper first. So if you are playing against a man you should throw paper first; if you are playing with a woman, throw scissors.
After the First Loss
A study from China’s Zhejiang University found once someone loses a round, they don’t throw the same thing, they often throw the gesture that beat them. If someone lost by throwing a rock against paper, they usually throw paper next.
Keep your Opponent Surprised
It revolves around a strategy of suddenly starting the game so that your opponent has no time to think. When people are surprised, their muscles tense and once people have fallen into this cataleptic state, they will almost inevitably throw rock because they don’t have time to come up with a strategy. In fact, 50-60% of people will choose rock in the first round of a Rock Paper Scissors, even when they are not pressured, making paper a very good choice if you want to increase your chances of winning.
Rock is for Rookies
Play scissors as your opening move against a more experienced player. Since you know they won’t come out playing a rock (since it is too obvious), scissors is your best safe move to win against paper or stalemate against your opponent playing scissors too.
The Double Run
When playing with someone who in not experienced at Rock Paper Scissors, look out for double runs (the same throw twice). When you see a two-scissors run, their next move will be a Rock or Paper, so Paper is your best move. Why does this work? People hate being seen as predictable and the perceived hallmark of predictability is to come out with the same throw three times in a row.
Suggest A Throw
When playing against someone who asks you to remind them about the rules, take the opportunity to subtly “suggest a throw” as you explain to them by physically showing them the throw you want them to play.
Ie. “Paper beats Rock, Rock beats Scissors (show scissors), Scissors (show scissors again) beats Paper.” Believe it or not, when people are not paying attention their subconscious mind will often accept your “suggestion”. A very similar technique is used by magicians to get someone to take a specific card from a deck of cards.
The Rounder’s Ploy
Mastering this strategy might make it so you never lose again! The way this strategy works is when you suggest a game with your opponent, do not announce the number of rounds you are going to play. Play the first match and if you win, take it as a win. If you lose, without missing a beat start playing the ‘next round’ on the assumption that it was a best 2 out of 3.
There is no doubt you will hear protests from your opponent but stay firm and remind them that “no one plays 1 game sudden death rock paper scissors for the kind of decision that the two of you are making”. This devious technique won’t guarantee you the win, but it will give you a chance to battle back and get the win. If you lose twice let them know in Professional Rock Paper Scissors Tournaments, it is a best 3 of 5 and keep playing.
For this strategy you want your opponent to be tense. When an opponent is tense, they are more likely to pick rock. The best way to make this happen is while priming in rock paper scissors shout your opponent’s name or just the name “ROCK!”. This will cause them to tense up, just make sure you are playing paper to bring home the win!