The advent of the squid? Investigate the proliferation of Squid Game

Unless another show shockingly mobilizes in Q4, Squid Game is the mega-bit that will define 2021 in popular culture. Korean drama Netflix portrays the poor and oppressed of a contemporary society in the near future, enlisted as participants in a reality show where they must compete in deadly variations of children’s games, with the last person standing winning. a multi-million dollar cash prize. So what do I get for being the last person to not watch it?

If nothing else, I have a unique, perhaps even privileged position as a squid game-resistant. The cultural wake of this show has produced counterfeits, riffs, parodies and scams across industries. Weird pink guard costumes at Spirit Halloween, online cultural critics, and DMCA bait scoops on the Google Play Store all contributed to the cacophony of talk surrounding this show. I’m here with a fresh perspective and a cold, clinical look to sample some of that noise and give you a sense of the effect Squid Game has on PC gaming. Here is what I found.

Crab game

Get used to this view. (Image credit: Dani)

To even begin to tackle the riddle that is Crab Game, available on Steam free from October 29, you have to start with its creator, Dany. I had never heard of Dani before, but her YouTube subscriber count is north of the Chicago population, and her most watched videos reach 15 million views. He has a catalog of humor and physics-based projects developed on the Unity engine, including a parody game called “3D Among Us”. I didn’t enter Crab Game with the highest expectations, but found myself very pleasantly surprised.

A victory that I never intended to taste. (Image credit: Dani)

In addition to Squid Game’s iconic and deadly rendition of ‘red light, green light’, most of the minigames are decidedly non-canon, including ‘King of the Hill’, ‘Hot Potato’, and game modes. control of the territory traversed randomly until only one winner remains, in which case the next match may begin.

Crab Game maintains a fast pace of play, and honestly, it’s something I wouldn’t mind catching up with a few friends. It’s also pretty impressive that just one person created this in less than a month, although you might want to wait for the update that prevents them from leaking IP addresses.

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Hello darkness, old friend. (Image credit: Mojang)

I reinstalled Minecraft for the first time since 2012 in order to find a server doing Squid Game stuff. How well does this genre-defining title – the beloved sandbox of children around the world – align with the world’s favorite Korean drama? Not very good in my experience, but it was cool to see people trying. Several servers host Squid-themed variations, including automated matches and scheduled tournaments run by players. I loaded in the Legundo server with my pathetic Steve default skin and participated in their automated squid game mode.

A rare victory that I was sure to savor. (Image credit: Mojang)

I found the expected mini-games, I guess straight from the show, such as “red light, green light” and a frustrating bridge crossing based entirely on guesswork. All were slightly hampered by controls more geared towards careful exploration and construction than frantic puzzle solving. Still, a lot of effort has clearly been put into production and that’s impressive for what it is.


It is as if I had been here before… in a previous life… (Image credit:)

Roblox’s multi-day outage almost kept me from trying its own squid-style attempt. Fortunately, the Roblox Corporation avoided the disaster and brought it back online, which gave me one of the most dissociative experiences of my life. My nephew is still too young to bond with more games, so I had never loaded Roblox before. I was vaguely aware of this thing, this weird little game-making game exploding in popularity and landing in this generation’s colleges ten times harder than Runescape in mine, but I wasn’t ready to face it directly. .

I got over my shock at his borderline sense of copyright law and my own awkward feeling of being the only adult on the playing field, and loaded into the first legitimate looking squid. that I found: “Squid Game 🎃 EVENT” from Trendsetter Games.

Where is the respect for Intellectual Property ?????? (Image credit: Roblox Corporation)

Squid Game 🎃 EVENT was largely the collection of minigames I had been waiting for, with the required adaptation “red light, green light” only noticeable to extract the audio from the show and present some alarming gunshots to whenever a player was eliminated. At first I was annoyed by our children’s exposure to such things, but then I remembered that my own father let me watch all of the Hannibal Lecter movies in sixth grade and I calmed down.

The most interesting thing I found here was a timed platform challenge that looked like it had been ripped straight from a Destiny raid. I eventually met my end very late in a match and had the chance to respawn for fifty “Robux”, but I refuse to invest in cryptocurrencies so I ended my run. (Just kidding, it’s just the normal kind of faking money.)

Bungie, take some notes. (Image credit: Roblox Corporation)

Are the squids here to stay?

What these games reminded me the most was my own experience with Garry’s mod like a kid. I loved playing on cards that recreated scenes from movies, with adaptations of the Matrix lobby scene and Evil Dead booth that stood out particularly in my memory. I loved jumping on servers full of strangers and participating in user-created mini-games or weird prison escape modes. I felt the same sensibility here, this enthusiastic rush to replicate iconic ideas from other media in games, mostly for fun.

The PC gaming cue to Squid Game looks very similar to PC gaming’s response to many trends over the years: confusion, playfulness, nonsense, and a delicious disregard for copyright law. I think I would have had more fun if I was still the same weird teenager who loved messing around in Garry’s Mod and had friends with a similar abundance of free time. I can only assume that’s what Squid Game is: reminding you of the warmth, fun, and all the other great things from your youth. (And what could be sinister about that?)

As timeless as these themes are, I doubt Squid Game games will be a thing for much longer. Janky, physics-dependent multiplayer games and mods continue to be one of the best genres on Steam, but you can only play a limited number of ‘red light, green light’ variations before anything else. is preferable.