Why did 001 create Squid Game?

Towards the end of the series, 001 reveals that he created Squid Game in pursuit of something fun due to having wealth and everything money could afford.

Run-away hit Netflix original series, Squid Game premiered on the streaming platform in September 2021. With little push from Netflix and through social media activations, the show became the most-watched show on Netflix, beating out previous record holder, 2020’s Bridgerton. The premise of the Netflix series reads, “Hundreds of cash-strapped players accept a strange invitation to compete in children’s games. Inside, a tempting prize awaits — with deadly high stakes.”

The protagonist of the show is the troubled and complex character, Seong Gi-hun, who is the last enlisted of the 456 cash-strapped players. During his time in the competition, he bonded with the eldest and first enlisted player, 001. The two formed a son-and-father bond. The viewers followed the growth of their relationship, as the two stuck together against the odds. Their relationship came to a tragic end as they were pitted against each other, with 001 sacrificing his life in order for 456 to continue on in the competition.

Following 456 surviving and becoming the ultimate winner of the deadly competition, Seong Gi-hun dealt with post-traumatic stress from seeing all the people he formed relationships with die in front of his eyes. As a result, he first refused to spend the cash prize money he won. This was until he made the shocking revelation that 001 was alive and was the one behind the whole competition.

In the confrontation that ensued between 001 and Seong Gi-hun, 001 revealed the reason for starting the games. He explained that after accruing wealth, spending money on material things got tiresome after some time. As a result, he and other billionaires like himself then thought to start the games as something fun and thrilling for them, where the stakes were high. The intention was selfish and centred on their need for excitement, which he no longer got from spending money.