Squid Game took the world by surprise when Netflix released it on September 17th and within days social media was littered with reactions, spoilers, and questions about when the next season would be released. With six different levels with varying degrees of difficulty, it’s hard to know whether or not someone would make it through to the final round. However, being UVA students gives us distinct advantages because we have all played variations of these levels as explained in detail below.
Red Light, Green Light
The game we all play every day on the walk to class. Just like how the contestants have to stop in response to the dolls movement, we all must abruptly stop when a car accelerates by even if we think that we might be in the clear. Just when you think you might make it in time, a car comes out of nowhere, and you’re forced to halt your forward progress. This game truly never gets any easier, and it’s impossible to predict when it’s safe to proceed, even if the street is clear as day and the crosswalk sign is blinking.
Honeycomb Shape Cutting
Now that I am a second year, I play a similar game to shape cutting less often, but I believe the impossible nature of this task is the equivalent of having to cut an apple with a plastic knife in the dining hall. If you’re lucky, you might be able to salvage a small sliver that somewhat resembles the shape of an apple slice, but more often than not the knife goes one way and your hand goes the other. Is it even worth it when the end product is a measly slice of a mealy red delicious apple?
Tug of War
I am no stranger to tug of war at UVA, and I assume very few people are who ever lived in dorms. Nothing is more frustrating than fighting with your own fitted sheet atop a lofted bed at 2 o’clock in the morning. Pull one way and the fabric in the opposite corner comes barreling toward you. The strategy to winning this fight is similar to the tactic Yeong-su Oh employed: lay down. If you’re anything like I was, you’ll just stop making your bed altogether because this tug of war has one clear winner, and it’s the fitted sheet.
Admit it, we’ve all had a class that requires collaboration within a group but sadly you’re left to do all the work, feeling as though in the end, it’s just you. What starts as a group project ends in a solo mission, but in this case the game is vying for your grade and not a pouch of marbles.
Two words: communal shower floors. One wrong step and you’re inches away from hitting the ground after stepping on a slippery tile or better yet you’ve trodden in a pile of hair, which leaves you feeling just as empty. In this level, the strategy was to look for patterns in the glass to distinguish between the two types, and in the same way you can wear shower shoes to help gain protection and traction against the floor but every so often, you forget your shoes, make a wrong step, and quite literally slip up.
Every time I leave Scott Stadium I feel like I’m on the offensive in squid game because standing on the hill for hours at a time makes your knees buckle when forced to walk again. Before you know it you’re hopping all over the place to compensate for this inability to walk as a human being. It really is a coin toss when it comes to how you’ll make it safely back to your living space when the stadium is conveniently located on the complete opposite side of campus.
All in all, I would definitely take these Squid Game levels over those in the Netflix series any day, but I think that UVA students stand a fighting chance.