Having watched Squid Game (2021 - ), I have the feeling that, while it is very different from Battle Royale (2000), there are a number of elements that the two works have in common, in the way that the game is depicted:

  • people are gassed into artificial sleep and kidnapped to a deserted island;
  • the game is extremely lethal - there is expected to be exactly a single survivor;
  • the players die either when eliminated by game rules, or at the hand of one another (importantly, there is not a "hunter" type of player who are supposed to kill the non-hunter players);
  • the game takes place in the contemporary world;
  • the PA system regularly plays Classical European Music;

Does Battle Royale establish an archetype of such "absolute lethality games in the modern world"? Or can most of the listed elements be found in previous works of cinema/TV?

  • 1
    Another similar film: As the Gods Will (2014) Oct 11, 2021 at 2:05
  • @galacticninja zero bravest money game, akagi, kaiji, liar game, one outs, kakegurui, umineko/higurashi, eden of the east/higashi no eden, mirai nikki/future diary, platinum end, king's game, danganronpa?
    – BCLC
    Oct 11, 2021 at 4:10
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    I feel this will be closed as "opinion based", but The Prisoner and Stephen King's The Long Walk come to mind, but I'm sure there are plenty of "deadly game" works before this, right back to Roman gladiators and perhaps even further back...
    – komodosp
    Oct 11, 2021 at 8:54
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    One or two of these? en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Films_about_death_games
    – DaG
    Oct 26, 2021 at 21:35

1 Answer 1


Reading through the Wiki page of Squid Game, it seems very apparent that Hwang Dong-hyuk, the screenwriter and developer of the series, was very derivative in many aspects of the series. He used the actual names of childhood friends (for not just one, but several of the main characters), and he admittedly was influenced by Battle Royale, Liar Game and other Japanese survival manga. It's very probable that he took the idea of playing music over a loud speaker directly from Battle Royale, and the rest from other survival manga sources.

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