6 Must-Know Survival Tips We Learned From Squid Game

6 Must-Know Survival Tips We Learned From ‘Squid Game’ — One for Every Challenge

If you were in the game, would you survive?

Warning: Spoilers ahead.

I just binge-watched Squid Game over the weekend, and it felt like I was getting consecutive anxiety attacks as each episode presented a new life-threatening challenge for the characters to accomplish. The K-drama is centred around people whose humanities are put to the test because of promised money. As I watched how the true nature of different characters came to light, it became clear that some of them were willing to murder just to win, while others would hope to find more humane ways to finish each game. 

Though the games brought out the best and worst in Seong Gi-hun and his teammates, there were a lot of survival tips to be learned from each challenge. Obviously, this is just for fun. I truly hope none of you have to foolishly put your life on the line just to make money. But if you find yourselves in a pickle where you have to activate survival mode, here are survival tips we can learn from Squid Game!

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1. Red light, green light: Stick together!

squid game survival tips

I think kids from all around the world inevitably played different versions of this game during their childhoods. “Red light, green light” requires players to run while the “it” is turned away from them, but freeze while the “it” is facing them. In this game, the lead character Seong Gi-hun hesitates to participate when he sees that those who are caught moving get shot. Despite his slow processing of the events happening before him, Gi-hun gets help twice. 

The first time was when his childhood friend Cho Sang-woo advised him to just go along with the innocent-turned-murderous game so that he could live to see another day. The second time was when Abdul Ali saves Gi-hun from tripping before the satanic doll turns around to detect movement. 

Just when you thought the episode had turned into an “every man for himself” disaster, a good samaritan saves Gi-hun’s life. The survival tip here is obvious: stick together. Maybe then you’ll have a higher chance of staying alive. 

2. Sugar honeycomb: Happy accidents happen, be aware of your surroundings

This game was anxiety-inducing and yet funny at the same time. I can’t explain it, but K-dramas have a way of mixing both in a twisted fashion. The honeycomb challenge required everyone to cut out a given shape carved on honeycomb candy using just a needle. If they break the shape, they die. It’s a simple challenge but faced with the threat of a gunshot to the head, it’s devastatingly nerve-wracking. Gi-hun would know, because he was so nervous that his sweat ended up dropping on his honeycomb. Thus, the happy accident happened. 

He figures it out instantly and starts licking the honeycomb to melt it and cut out the shape easily. Upon seeing Gi-hun’s newly discovered hack, everyone else began to lick their honeycombs too, and so they survived the second game. Lucky for them, right? That said, Squid Game survival tips wouldn’t be complete without this: Being aware of your surroundings can help you crack the code. Pun intended. 

3. Tug of war: “Brains over brawns” is not dead

squid game survival tips

This was my favourite challenge in the series because it proved that experience and intelligence can still win in physical games. There’s not much to explain in the rules of tug of war except that this version in Squid Game has the losing team falling to their graves. 

Gi-hun’s team almost lost all hope when they saw that their opponents were more brawny than their team. Gi-hun’s team, after all, had three women and one elderly man. How could they win? But the elderly man named Oh Il-Nam had years of experience behind him and rallied their team to apply a game-changing strategy. Who would have thought that tricks like putting the rope under your armpit, planting your feet on the ground for the first 10 seconds, and leaning back so that your stomach is facing the ceiling, were effective in winning Tug of War?

On top of these Squid Game survival tips from tug of war, the losing team’s greatest flaw was that they had already underestimated Gi-hun’s team just because the team looked physically weaker. They failed to remember one fundamental principle: brains over brawns.

4. Marbles: Be soft but not weak, be strong but not violent

This episode was heart-shattering to say the least. My favourite supporting cast member got killed off. Ali was a ray of sunshine in Gi-hun’s team, but his kindness was also his undoing. In the game of marbles, the participants had to group into two and were suddenly hit with the shameless instruction that whoever wins all of their opponent’s marbles will be saved while the other will die. 

Ali, unfortunately, agreed to pair with Sang-woo, who actually lost the marbles game to Ali. However, seeing that Ali was very reluctant to be the cause of his death, Sang-woo took advantage of Ali’s trust and was able to trick him into handing over his marbles. Ali’s soft nature was also his weakness, while Sang-woo did what he had to do to survive, and he did it without violence. All’s fair in love and war, I guess?

But seriously, I started to hate Sang-woo from this episode until the end. 

5. The glass bridge: Having a good memory can save your life

squid game survival tips

Step on regular glass, you die. Step on tempered glass, you can move on to the next pair of glass platforms on the glass bridge and face another life-threatening decision. Being the first ones in line is literally a death sentence, while being the last ones in line will give you a fighting chance. Luckily for Gi-hun, he was the very last. But he was too flustered to remember which of the first two glass platforms was regular or tempered. Were it not for Kang Sae-byeok’s help, he probably would have fallen. 

The tip is simple: Improve your memory. Among the Squid Game survival tips though, this would be my personal weakness. I have a horrible memory, plus I’m scared of heights. So yeah, my anxiety was quite triggered during this episode.

6. The squid game: Don’t show weakness, don’t provoke anyone before a game

squid game survival tips

Kang Sae-byeok was wounded before this last game. At first I didn’t understand why she didn’t just ask for a medic, but it quickly dawned on me that it would have given her opponents the signal to kill her right then and there. She was smart to hide it. But alas, she was killed off by Sang-woo even before the squid game started. Sang-woo’s mistake here, though, was that Gi-hun’s anger was irrevocably triggered because of Sang-woo’s lack of compassion and empathy. 

This eventually led him to defeat Sang-woo in the squid game and emerge as the victor. So kids, if you’re competing for something and you’re at the last stage of the game, mind your own business. Provoking and taunting your opponent might just be your downfall. 

Also read: Filipino Actor Carlo Aquino Was Almost in K-Drama Squid Game

Among these Squid Game survival tips, which one resonates with you the most? Tell us your favourite tip and episode on our Facebook page!

All images credited to Squid Game | Official IMDB Page

About Author

Therese Sta. Maria
Therese Sta. Maria

Therese's close friends know that if they haven’t seen her around recently, then she’s probably having an adventure with her luggage and camera in hand. Though she loves staying at home and spending lazy afternoons with friends, there are times when she has to be "away from home to feel at home," — that’s when she’s bitten by the travel bug. See her travels on Instagram @reesstamaria.