World Rock Paper Scissors Day Date in the current year: August 27, 2022

World Rock Paper Scissors Day World Rock Paper Scissors Day is celebrated on August 27 in honor of one of the oldest games in the world that is accessible to everyone regardless of their gender, age or language and where everyone has a chance to win.

Rock paper scissors, also known as Rochambeau (alternatively spelled roshambo or ro-sham-bo), is a hand game played between two or more people. It was named after three shapes that players can form with an outstretched hand: rock is a closed fist, paper is a flat hand, and scissors are a V-sign pointed horizontally.

Each player forms one of these shapes simultaneously, and the outcome is decided depending on what elements have been chosen. There are three possible outcomes in a game of rock paper scissors; a draw (all players have chosen the same shape), a win, or a loss. Rock beats scissors but loses to paper, while paper loses to scissors.

Rock paper scissors originated in China. The first recorded mention of the game dates back to the Ming dynasty (1368–1644); the record claims that the game was invented sometime during the Han dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD). References to similar hands games collectively known as sansukumi-ken are found throughout Japanese history. Different variations of sansukumi-ken use different signs; the variation using rock, paper and scissors is called jan-ken.

The modern version of rock paper scissors emerged in the late 19th century and had spread to the West by the early 20th century. The alternative name “Rochambeau” probably originated in the United States around the 1930s. It is allegedly a reference to Count Rochambeau, a French nobleman who fought in the American Revolutionary War; however, there is no evidence that Rochambeau actually played the game in the late 18th century like a popular legend suggests.

Rock paper scissors is often used to settle disputes or make a choice between two or more people, similar to heads or tails or drawing straws. Although considered a fair selection method, rock paper scissors is not truly random, especially when one knows their opponents well. The game is also played professionally; there are various tournaments held across the world and a number of organizations for professional rock paper scissors players. World Rock Paper Scissors Day was created by one of such organizations.

World Rock Paper Scissors Day has been celebrated every August 27 since 2014. It was established by the World Rock Paper Scissors Association (WRPSA), an international organization created to encourage people to play rock paper scissors for fun, to help with making small everyday decisions or settling disputes, or even professionally.

How can you observe World Rock Paper Scissors Day? The simplest and most obvious way to do it would be to play a round or two of rock paper scissors just for fun. You also can use the game to settle small disputes during the day, organize a rock paper scissors tournament for your friends and family, learn more about the history of the game and its strategy, and spread the word on social media with the hashtag #WorldRockPaperScissorsDay.

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International Observances

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World Rock Paper Scissors Day, international observances, rock paper scissors, Rochambeau, hand games