Knife game

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Knife game (representation of motion)
Simple order for playing the knife game.
More complex order for playing the knife game.
More complex order for playing the knife game.

The knife game, pinfinger, nerve, bishop, stabscotch, or five finger fillet (FFF), is a game wherein, placing the palm of one's hand down on a table with fingers apart, using a knife, or sharp object, one attempts to stab back and forth between one's fingers, moving the object back and forth, trying to not hit one's fingers. The game may be safely played with the eraser side of a pencil. The order in which the spaces between the fingers are stabbed varies. In North America, the most popular version is to simply stab all the spaces in order, starting from behind the thumb to after the little finger, and back again:

 1-2-3-4-5-6-5-4-3-2 (repeat).

In Australia this order is used.

 1-2-1-3-1-4-1-5-1-6 (repeats).

In Europe, a more complex order is used. With the spaces numbered 1 (behind the thumb) through 6 (after the little finger), the order would be as follows:

 1-2-1-3-1-4-1-5-1-6-1-5-1-4-1-3-1-2 (repeats)

or an even more complex order:

 1-2-1-3-1-4-1-5-1-6-2-6-3-6-4-6-5-6-4-6-3-6-2-6 (etc.)

Popular culture[edit]

Video games[edit]

Knife.Hand.Chop.Bot (2007), by the Svoltcore group, is an, "interactive installation that plays with the recipient's concern about [his or her] own physical integrity."[1]

2010's Red Dead Redemption and 2011's Rage included the knife game as a playable mini-game.

Knife game song[edit]

In early 2013, the knife game became a trend on the internet after the release of a YouTube video entitled "The Knife Game Song" created by songwriter Rusty Cage.[2] Several internet users uploaded videos of them singing a song while playing the knife game.[3] A new version of the song with additional lyrics was later released on March 29, 2013.[4]


A scene in the movie Aliens starring Sigourney Weaver has an android named Bishop who plays the "knife game" with one of the crew, thus alerting Ripley (Weaver) that there is an android on board the spaceship. The game is also played in the movie Ted created by Seth MacFarlane; the titular character, Ted, a talking teddy bear, plays the game at a party, while intoxicated, with a stranger, and ends ups accidentally stabbing his hand. In The Hangover Part II an unsuccessful attempt at the knife game is eventually revealed to be the cause of the severed finger discovered in the motel room, which turns out to be an essential clue in the group's search for their missing friend (and owner of the finger), Teddy.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kwastek, Katja (2013). Aesthetics of Interaction in Digital Art, p.86. ISBN 9780262019323.
  2. ^ "'Knife Song': Hanna Ellingseter, Norwegian Girl, Sings The Most Dangerous Song Ever (VIDEO)". Huffington Post. March 4, 2013. Retrieved April 11, 2013. 
  3. ^ Yetta Gibson (March 6, 2013). "Dangerous Internet trend: 'Knife Game Song'". AZ Family. Retrieved April 11, 2013. 
  4. ^ Rusty Cage (March 29, 2013). The NEW Knife Game Song! Full Version!.