How to play Squid Game’s paper flip challenge

Ddakji is a popular playground game in South Korea.

Squid Game

By: Kimberley Bond.

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Surprising smash Squid Game has captivated audiences across the globe, with the Korean-language drama now set to become the most watched Netflix show of all time.

The nine-part series follows gambler Seong Gi-Hun, who finds himself competing in a series of playground games in order to win a life-changing amount of cash. But these otherwise beloved children’s games have a decidedly sadistic edge, with those who fail or lose their tasks being ‘eliminated’ – a euphemism for being shot in the head.

Gi-Hun finds himself lured into the tournament after he is approached by a wealthy and suave businessman (played by acting legend Gong Yoo) in the subway. The businessman offers to engage Gi-hun in a game of ddakji – if Gi-hun wins a round, he wins petty cash, if the businessman wins, he’s allowed to slap Gi-hun across the face.

The paper flip challenge is the viewers’ first inclination of how brutal the games will be, but what exactly is ddakji? And how is it played?

Here’s all you need to know.

What is ddakji?

The paper flipping challenge is called ddakji, a traditional South Korean game played by using folded paper tiles.
It is popular with young children. The aim of the game is for one player to make the other player’s tile flip over on the floor.

How do you make the ddakji cards?

The cards are made by using a very simple origami fold, which can be fun for little ones to do before playing the game properly.

  • Firstly, you need numerous sheets of origami or construction paper.
  • Fold the paper into thirds, then fold the left corner up and the right corner down.
  • Repeat this again with a separate sheet of paper.
  • Then, join the two pieces together in the flat centre, and then fold the flaps together until it makes one total square shape.
  • Repeat this process several times until you have numerous squares to play with.

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How to do you play ddakji?

Ddakji is not dissimilar to retro ’90s game Pogs, so bear that in mind when you play. The aim of Ddakji is to flip over your opponent’s card. This done by throwing one card as hard as possible at the other. Throwing ddakji looks simple, but getting the angle and force necessary to flip the other player’s tile takes practice. Aiming your throw towards the widest part of the card helps flip it over.

Instead of playing for cash (or a slap round the face), if you do manage to flip your opponent’s card, you get to keep it – so it’s best to make several cards before playing.

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Squid Game is available to stream on Netflix. Looking for something else to watch? Check out our guide to the best TV series on Netflix and best movies on Netflix, or visit our TV Guide