Rock-Paper-Scissors or RPS is a simple game that has been played for ages. It is also popularly known as “jan-ken-pon” in Japan, where the game originated. The game is often played to settle trivial disputes, and it requires no equipment or special skills.
In RPS, two players simultaneously make one of three hand gestures – rock, paper, or scissors – with their fists. The rules of the game are simple: rock beats scissors, scissors beats paper, and paper beats rock. A tie occurs if both players make the same gesture.
While the game may seem random, several factors can influence the outcome of each round. These include the player’s familiarity with the game, their strategy, their ability to read their opponent’s gestures, and their reaction time.
Several experiments have been conducted to explore the science behind RPS. These experiments aim to determine the likelihood of winning based on the players’ choices and the strategies they use. One of the most famous RPS experiments was conducted by the researchers at the University of Tokyo in 1990.
In this experiment, the researchers asked 100 participants to play RPS against a computer program that followed one of three strategies – random, adaptive, and repetitive. The random strategy involved choosing a gesture at random, while the adaptive strategy involved choosing a gesture based on the player’s previous moves. The repetitive strategy involved repeating the same move in a pattern.
The results of the experiment showed that players using the adaptive strategy were more likely to win than those using the other strategies. The players who used the random strategy won 33.3% of the time, while those using the repetitive strategy won only 22.7% of the time. However, the players using the adaptive strategy had a win rate of 37.4%.
Another experiment was conducted by the Department of Psychology at the University of Sussex in 2007. In this experiment, players were asked to play RPS against each other and against a computer program that followed one of two tactics – repeated or random.
The results of this experiment showed that players who thought their opponent was using the random strategy were more likely to choose the winning move. This tactic was effective because players often think that their opponents will choose a move that they have not already used.
Overall, these experiments show that while RPS may seem like a simple game of chance, there is a significant amount of strategy and psychology involved in winning. The results of these experiments can be used to improve artificial intelligence and game theory, as well as to better understand human behavior. So, the next time you play RPS, remember that it’s not just about luck – it’s also about strategy and tactics.