19 Australian Games That Would Add To The Chaos Of “Squid Game”

“Hot Cross Buns” on the recorder, but one wrong note and you’re eliminated.



Twitter: RH_Kremlin / Via Twitter: @RH_Kremlin

How it’s usually played: One or more players are “in” and say “bullrush!” The rest of the group are on one side of the field and have to reach the other side without getting tagged. 

How it would be played in Squid Game: It would be similar to the first round, played with the creepy Red Light, Green Light doll. Only this time, Healthy Harold would be the overseer and he would shoot dead anyone who got tagged.


The beep test

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How it’s usually played: Players run 20 metres back and forth across a marked track keeping in time with the beeps. With each round, the time between beeps gets shorter, meaning that the players have to run faster.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Healthy Harold would return, to make sure that only the fittest make it to the next round. Don’t make it in time for the next beep to go off? Yeah, nah — too bad. You’re eliminated.


Backyard cricket

Flickr: Newtown Grafitti / Via Flickr: newtown_grafitti

How it’s usually played: Basically like regular cricket, except a bin is used as the wicket.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Players would be divided into teams, which would need to come up with a house chant (similar to the ones used in school sporting carnivals), before playing a round of backyard cricket. The losing team would be eliminated by having cricket balls pummelled at their body — gnarly stuff, really. Oh, and if there’s a tie, the rubber of destiny would decide the winner.


Heads down, thumbs up

@lukeschofield93 / Via Twitter: @lukeschofield93

How it’s usually played: The majority of the players rest their heads on tables while sticking their thumbs up. Meanwhile, a couple of other players press one person’s thumb each (e.g. three volunteers=three thumbs pressed down). After this, each person whose thumb was pressed has to guess which volunteer pressed it.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Heads down, thumbs up would be one of the deadliest games, because there would be multiple ways to get eliminated — if you guess wrong or if someone guesses right and you did press their thumb. Tactics would also come into play here — imagine Deok-su colluding with his gang to make sure certain players die.


What’s the time, Mr Wolf?

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How it’s usually played: One player is chosen to represent Mr Wolf and they’ll stand at the opposite end of the playing field from the other players. The other players will then chant in unison: “What time is it, Mr Wolf?”, and Mr Wolf will respond by either saying a clock time which will correlate to the number of steps they’ll take towards them (e.g. 3 o’clock is three steps) or calling “Dinner time” and chasing the other players.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Mr Wolf would be represented by a moving animatronic in the shape of, well, a wolf. A computerised voice would call the chants, with the players then coming closer and closer. At random, the animatronic would shout “Dinner time!” — except at this point, real wolves would be released onto the field and chase the players.


How it’s usually played: The Nutbush isn’t a game per say, but it’s a popular Australian dance set to the tune of “Nutbush City Limits” by Tina Turner and Ike. Whenever this song comes on, everyone gets into formation and does the same moves.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Players would enter a dance studio, where they would be treated to a never-ending loop of “Nutbush City Limits”. They would be instructed by the guards to dance — and to keep dancing, unless they fall to the ground from exhaustion (eliminated) or mess up a move (also eliminated).


Rainbow parachute

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How it’s usually played: If memory serves me right, the rainbow parachute was used for a number of different schoolyard games. The one that’s most familiar is when it would be thrown up and you would have to run underneath, sit down and pull the edge under you.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Remember the marble episode? This would be similar to that, in which players would be asked to form teams. Naturally, they would pair up with their mates or those who they deem the strongest. Except once they get into the gym to play, they’ll then realise that its their teammates they’ll be fighting against. The way the game will work is the same — they’ll all lift up the parachute as a team and run to get underneath. Except, one player has to be eliminated and left on the outside.


Duck, duck, goose

Flickr: Lolasophia / Via Flickr: lolasophia

How it’s usually played: A group of players sit in a circle, while another player walks around tapping and calling each person a “duck” until they finally call one a “goose”. The “goose” then stands and tries to tag the player who called them, while they try to return and sit where the “goose” had been sitting before. If they’re successful, the “goose” takes over. If they’re not, they continue the same process. 

How it would be played in Squid Game: Instead of just a couple players, it would be played with all the remaining contestants — meaning that the distance to run and secure a spot would be bigger. There would be a timer of 10 minutes and whoever is the “goose” left at the end of that would be eliminated. Some players would find it easy to chase others, while some won’t be able to shake off the title of “goose”. This would be repeated for multiple rounds of duck, duck, goose.


Pass the parcel

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How it’s usually played: A prize is wrapped in a large number of layers of wrapping paper. Smaller prizes also may be placed in-between other layers. Music is played as the parcel is passed around — whoever is holding the parcel when the music is stopped removes one layer of wrapping and claims any prize. It restarts until each layer is removed.

How it would be played in Squid Game: First off, there would be a mixture of “prizes” and bombs hidden between the layers. The bombs would look unassuming — say, like a wooden toy horse. That way, the players don’t know what’s going to happen until they unwrap the layer and inspect the “prize” they’ve been given. Is it going to explode or is it just a childhood toy? Also, “Hot Potato” by The Wiggles would be used for the music playing.


Golden child

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How it’s usually played: The group is split into two teams — the runners and the shooters. When the game starts, the shooters take turns trying to land a ball in the hoop. Meanwhile, the first player from the running team attempts to do a lap of the court boundaries. Once a ball goes through the hoop, the runner has to freeze. This repeats until the last runner, who is the “golden child”. While they’re running, they unfreeze all the other players and attempt to make it back unless the whole team gets out from the scoring of a goal.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Pretty much the same, except the court would be suspended off the ground. Why? So, that a trapdoor seamlessly eliminates the losing team — tug-of-war style.


Musical chairs

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How it’s usually played: A set of chairs is arranged with one fewer than the number of players. While music plays, the players walk around the chairs. When it stops, they need to find a chair to occupy because the one who doesn’t is eliminated. This is repeated until there’s one person left.

How it would be played in Squid Game: I don’t know about you guys, but musical chairs has always been high stakes and competitive AF. So not many changes are needed, except that if you fail to get a chair, you get shot.


Double dutch

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How it’s usually played: The player in the middle must time jumps between two jump ropes twirling in opposite directions.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Players break off into teams of three — two people have to man the ropes, while one has to be the jumper. If they can last a total of three minutes, they’ve made it to the next round. Oh, did I mention that the jump ropes would be on fire?



Flickr: Emily Holmden / Via Flickr: emlah

How it’s usually played: Two players position their hands like in the above picture. Each person takes turns to try and the back of the others hands before they can withdraw them. If they succeed, they get another go. If they miss, their opponent has their turn.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Slapsies would be used when Gi-hun meets the salesman at the train station. For each point lost, the player gets an additional slap to the face.


Hot cross buns on the recorder

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How it’s usually played: This one’s not an actual game, but every Aussie will remember having to recite “Hot Cross Buns” on the recorder in primary school.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Simple — one wrong note and you’re eliminated.



Flickr: John Krzesinski / Via Flickr: johnkay

How it’s usually played: Players are allocated a stone, which is tossed into the court in a sequential numerical order. For each number, the player hops through the course (skipping their marked square), reach the end, turn around, hop back, retrieve their stone and make it back to the beginning. This is then repeated for the next number and so on.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Like the glass bridge game, this version of hopscotch would see the court laid out on a suspended bridge. This means that if you step outside the lines or accidentally go too fast, you’ll either be shot or fall to your death.


Goon of fortune

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How it’s usually played: A number of goon sacks are pegged around the outside of a Hills Hoist washing line. Players sit underneath it at the edges. One player spins the hoist and when the clothesline comes to a stop, any player underneath a bag must drink an agreed amount of wine.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Some of the goon sacks would be filled with wine, other with poison — and you can’t tell which is which until you’ve taken a sip.



Reddit: u/fleece_white_as_snow / Via reddit.com

How it’s usually played: You all know the rules of schoolyard handball — there are way too many for me to explain.

How it would be played in Squid Game: It would be utilised in episode six, when Deok-su and Player 278 would engage in an intense one on one handball sesh. 


Egg and spoon race

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How it’s usually played: Players must balance an egg on a spoon and race with it to the finish line.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Before playing the egg and spoon race, the players would have to allocate themselves a number. This number would then decide what size spoon they would get — some are large, some are tiny, some are oddly-shaped — as well as what type of egg they receive. Half of the eggs will explode if they drop to the ground.


And lastly, silent ball

@labikville / Via Twitter: @labikville

How it’s usually played: Players spread out in the available space and take turns silently passing the ball to each other. A player is eliminated if they drop the ball, make a bad pass or talk/make noise.

How it would be played in Squid Game: Exactly the same, except in this case eliminated means being, uh, ~eliminated~. Oh, and I would totally imagine some of the players intentionally aiming for heads or weak spots to make people gasp in pain or fall. 

Would you survive Squid Game by playing these Australian games?


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