Evolution – a rock, paper, scissors drama warm-up game

Evolution is a good game for getting people mixing together, with the added benefit of being rather silly and fun too.

It is simply a rock, paper, scissors tournament framework. Everyone starts at the lowest level (an egg) but if they win a game of rock, paper, scissors, they get to evolve to the next level. Out of each game, there is a winner who evolves up a level and a loser who devolves back a level (as far as possible – an egg just stays an egg). Participants can only play against people at the same evolutionary level as those – there is a pose/action & noise to indicate which level they’re at and they have to find other people doing the same thing. Because of the evolution/devolution, people can’t just play with their friends because, one way or another, their friends will quickly no longer be at their level.

The evolutionary chain:

  • Egg – hands arched over their hed
  • Dinosaur – T-Rex style claws with a dinosaur-ish roar
  • Chicken – arms bent into wings and clucking
  • Superhero – Superman flying pose with an optional cry of “faster than a speeding bullet!”
  • Alien – fingers make antenna on top of head, with a “biggle biggle” type noise
  • “This guy!”/”This gal!” – a super confident double-thumbs pointed to chest

Encourage this to be fast paced so everyone gets to move up and down the evolutionary ladder a few times, and if there are any odd ones out (either due to numbers or, more likely, because no one else is at their position on the evolutionary ladder), they’re not left waiting too long until their next game starts.

Group size: minimum of about ten players, no maximum – it really could be hundreds of people!

Length: can be finished at any time but a minimum of five minutes

Have you used this game with your class?

  • Did they like it?
  • Did you find it useful?
  • Did you change anything?

We'd love to hear what you think!