Netflix's weird Squid Game: The Challenge game show is coming in November

Contestants cutting cookies in Squid Game
(Image credit: Netflix)

Netflix has announced that its game show based on global hit TV series Squid Game will finally launch in November 2023.

Squid Game was a massive hit for the streaming service, ranking among the best Netflix shows, and igniting audiences worldwide with its depiction of a twisted reality TV show, where 456 desperate contestants played a series of deadly children’s games in the hopes of winning a life-changing cash prize.

Obviously (or inexplicably), someone thought something like it should exist in real life, and Netflix greenlit a game show spin-off, Squid Game: The Challenge, shortly after the show first aired – following 456 real-life contestants as they try and compete for a $4.56 million prize, reportedly the biggest cash sum ever awarded for a reality series. 

Contestants will take part in a number of games and challenges inspired by the TV show, with losers gradually being removed until only one winner remains.

The reality show version won’t be as deadly, of course – though a Health and Safety watchdog did have to conduct a risk assessment after some contestants suffered injuries on set during filming (via Deadline).

Netflix confirmed the release date in its first-ever Upfront event, which laid out plans for the coming year, including more types of ads for its cheapest subscription tier.

Red light, green light

This isn’t, incredibly, the first Squid Game-inspired reality show to hit Netflix. The South Korean survival show Physical: 100 has a similar premise – with contestants having to pass various challenges that test their strength, balance, and willpower for the promise of a cash prize – and landed earlier this year, to great success. But we imagine the brand association for The Challenge will help propel it even higher in Netflix’s most-streamed lists when it debuts on the service.

We’re yet to hear when Squid Game season 2 is landing on the service, though we may have to wait until 2024 – meaning Squid Game: The Challenge will have to tide us over until then.

Henry St Leger

Henry is a freelance technology journalist, and former News & Features Editor for TechRadar, where he specialized in home entertainment gadgets such as TVs, projectors, soundbars, and smart speakers. Other bylines include Edge, T3, iMore, GamesRadar, NBC News, Healthline, and The Times.