The TV show Squid Game became a worldwide phenomenon and became Netflix's most-watched original series. The South Korean show revolves around 456 contestants deeply in debt, attempting to survive a series of deadly games for a chance of winning 45.6 billion won. The games were often those played by children but at the risk of losing their lives, such as Red Light, Green Light, Tug-o-War, and the popular Korean game Squid, or Ojingeo, as the final match, where Squid Game gets its name.
Since its debut, many versions of Squid Game have been recreated. For example, levels inspired by the games and their sets in the TV show are possibly the most popular games on Roblox right now, and many similarly inspired servers have been designed in Minecraft as well. It also induced a wave of copy-cat real-life Squid Games, including the individual YouTube productions of James Charles, The Try Guys, and MrBeast, all of which were unrelated. MrBeast's, however, might be the most impressive with an incredibly high budget of $3.5 million as well as a high payout. And after a day, MrBeast's video already had over 43 million views on YouTube.
How MrBeast's Games Worked
As one might guess, the Squid Game that YouTuber MrBeast created, while as realistic as possible, was also much more fun and lighthearted than the TV show, though technology and special effects were used to simulate some of the violence. Additionally, the contestants wore green tracksuits similar to Squid Game's, and the production staff and team—which included YouTuber Karl Jacobs—wore similar red suits, though not all of them were ominously masked.
Following suit of the popular Netflix show, MrBeast's version began with Red Light, Green Light, but instead of the creepy doll with an owlish head singing the now horrifying song in Korean, MrBeast himself would call out "red light" and "green light," and sometimes even throw in a "yellow light" to mess with the players. However, the iconic doll was still there to detect any motion. If they moved during a Red Light, even just a bit, a mechanism strapped to their stomachs would pop to simulate the gunshot wound, and they'd sit on the ground. Contestants had 30 minutes to get across the finish line without being detected.
Next was the TikTok trendy honeycomb game from Squid Game's third episode. However, because one could assume that these players know which shapes would be best to win the game whereas the players in the show didn't initially understand what they would be used for, they were asked to form four lines with the shapes covered by question marks. Once again, if they accidentally broke their honeycomb without removing the shape correctly, the device on their stomachs would pop. The production staff also interfered by dropping a lighter during the round, simulating the events of the show.
Tug of War followed, and it looks like many groups did follow Squid Game's method of turning away women for the brawn of men. To decide which teams of 10 would face-off, MrBeast would pull numbers randomly from a pair of boxes. In the end, though, rather than falling to their deaths, players were pulled into a cushioned pit safely between the opposing sides.
The marbles challenge may have been the biggest twist of MrBeast's Squid Game, however. After monitoring who each of the contestants spent the most time with, rather than allowing them to pick who they'd face off against, they were assigned to their "best friend" by the production staff, and some pairs were actually roommates and very close friends. Because marble games are not as regularly played by children in the States, many pairs ended up choosing games from Squid Game.
Then, to thin the numbers and simulate the massive fight that broke out overnight, MrBeast had the contestants play a traditional South Korean game called Ddakji, similar to the American Pogs game, where they would try and flip a folded paper on the ground by throwing another folded paper at it. The first 16 to do so would move on.
Choosing the numbers for Squid Game's glass bridge challenge was another twist that MrBeast created. The mannequins wearing the numbered shirts were in a random order, and the numbers were in Korean. The set for this challenge was the most impressive, looking nearly identical to that of Squid Game but with another cushioned pit underneath, though the platforms were much safer than the clear glass. Like the show, the contestants were also timed, resulting in some players pulling similar shenanigans by refusing to move. The winners of this challenge also got to eat a real steak dinner (with plastic knives).
Unfortunately, because the contestants are not from South Korea, no one was familiar enough with the real game Squid, nor was there any way to plan for the number of remaining contestants, so MrBeast had them play musical chairs instead, which can also get pretty intense as well, but it was played on another set nearly identical to Netflix's Squid Game.
How Much Did Contestants Win?
MrBeast is known for being a philanthropist, so even some losing players were able to walk away with a smaller amount of cash, such as $2,000 for those eliminated from the honeycomb challenge. In between challenges, MrBeast would even tempt players to remove themselves for $4,000, which many took despite there actually being no violent risk to the games. In the end, though the winner walked away with $456,000 and MrBeast consoled the runner up with $10,000.
Squid Game is available to watch on Netflix.
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