Don't disrespect your wife
No matter how sexy your intern/secretary/whatever is, just don't do it, OK? It was a mere hint of that type of behaviour that got Dr Gordon (Cary Elwes) into such a sticky situation in the first installment of the unrelenting horror franchise.
How Easy Is It To Achieve? Quite tough, as there wasn't even any stone cold evidence that discreet Gordon actually sealed the deal with a young medical student, but the compromising photos were enough to have the doc's ankle chained to the radiator in Jigsaw's grubby bathroom.
So it's probably best if you're never snapped alone in a room with any young, potential affair fodder, just to be safe.
If You Have To: Make sure you get some decent blackout blinds installed in your love nest.
Don't harm yourself
Quite a broad warning, this one. Basically, don't do drugs, self-harm or participate in any other self-deprecatory conduct that could be construed as underestimating the value of your own life, as this is one of Jigsaw's biggest bugbears.
It was the motive behind his decision to put Amanda Young into one of his early traps.
How Easy Is It To Achieve? For the right-minded out there, this rule shouldn't be too tough to stick to, though John Kramer/Jigsaw's terminal brain cancer makes him a pretty harsh judge of what he deems to be 'a waste.' So it's probably best to steer clear of booze and ciggies, too. And junk food. And any form of extreme sports.
If You Have To: Make sure you do as Amanda did and prove your worth by escaping your allotted trap. A few moments of excruciating agony are probably a small price to pay for your life, and a shot at an assistant position at Jigsaw's side…
Do seek the assistance of Danny Glover
Considering the convoluted, twisty-turny, time-jumping nature of the overarching Saw narrative, it's a shame that Danny Glover never returned as obsessive cop David Tapp.
His instincts may be slightly off target (he initially suspects Dr Gordon of the 'Jigsaw Murders'), but his investigations still turned out useful, as he ended up saving Gordon's hostaged wife and kid from a sticky situation.
How Easy Is It To Achieve? Well, Glover only appeared in the first movie (Tapp made an appearance in a spin-off videogame), so most of the time he's not actually around to offer his help.
If You Really Can't: Then make use of one of the other 'dogged' officers of the law that pop up throughout the series, including Rigg (Lyriq Bent), Perez (Athena Karkanis) and Strahm (Scott Patterson).
Do keep a close eye on your belongings
Jigsaw is a master of fudging evidence to ensure that the grand design of his plan unfurls swimmingly. The reason Danny Glover was watching the doctor so closely was because a penlight of Gordon's had been planted at a crime scene. A schoolboy error.
How Easy Is It To Achieve? Not very. It's hard for anyone, especially a busy surgeon, to keep an eye on every pen or pencil they touch. And Jigsaw (or one of his cronies) is bound to be lurking nearby at the pivotal moment you sent down your writing apparatus.
If You Really Can't: Just do what a practising doctor should really being doing at all times anyway and pull on a pair of latex CSI gloves, to ensure you don't misplace any finger prints that could be used against you.
Don't give chase
If you think you've got Jigsaw in your sights, for goodness sake don't chase him. If Steven Sing's (Ken Leung) irrational, do-gooding actions taught us anything in the first movie, it's that Jigsaw always has a plan.
When Sing and Tapp stumble on the notorious torturer's hideout, the former tries to apprehend the villain, only to set off a trip wire that causes a set of shotguns to blast his brains out.
How Easy Is It To Achieve? It should be relatively simple, just let your inner wimp take charge if you get into any precarious looking situations.
If You Really Have To: If you must be a hero, please do watch your step.
Don't disobey direct orders
One of the most unnecessary deaths in the series must surely be Gus' (Tony Nappo) totally-avoidable bullet in the eye number in Saw II . Gus is one of a number of victims trapped inside a house that's slowly filling with a poisonous gas (imagine a slightly less frightful Big Brother house and you're pretty much there).
One of the first commands the group is given is not to use a particular key on the door to the room, so what does Xavier (Franky G) go and do…
How Easy Is It To Achieve? In theory, it's a pretty simple rule. Admittedly, the poison gas makes everything a bit more urgent, and Jigsaw can be a bit tricksy in his wordplay. But don't go and disregard the bleedin' obvious.
If You Really Have To: Make sure you have an idiot like Gus on standby to peer through the peephole and take the bullet for you.
Do read the instructions carefully
One of Jigsaw's saving graces as a human being is that he generally gives his victims some sort of fighting chance, though the opportunity for survival is squandered needlessly by so many.
Obi (Tim Burd) gets a message from Jigsaw but fails to read between the lines; if he'd have analysed the subtext he would've known how to switch off the furnace that burns him to death.
How Easy Is It To Achieve? So-so. Just make sure you listen carefully to your tape, especially for any particular words that are stressed or over-emphasised.
If You Really Can't: Then you should probably start reading logic puzzle magazines for practice.
Don't... be a bad lieutenant
Or any kind of bad copper. Donnie Wahlberg's Eric Matthews was a key player in the first few sequels: in fact, he provided the inspiration for the whole game in Saw II . Jigsaw rounded up a group of people who had been the victims of Matthews' framing, and chucked in the dirty tec's son for good measure.
Matthews does his best to find the house and save the inhabitants, but in a typical Saw twist of fate it turned out he was the one being tested all along. He was then captured and later exited the franchise in grand style by having two blocks of ice smash his skull.
How Easy Is It To Achieve? Well it's probably a lot harder to do proper police work, collecting real evidence and all that, but it's worth it in the long run.
If You Really Have To: Then you should be a better bad copper like Mark Hoffman, who's so bad he gets to be a part of Jigsaw's team.
Don't be a police snitch
Sneaky grasses and bent coppers rile ol' Jiggy in equal measure. Michael Marks (Noam Jenkins) is the star of Saw II 's gory opening sequence.
Michael has made his money 'watching' others as an informant, so his ironic punishment is to be trapped in a headcrushing 'venus fly trap' helmet, with the only means of escape hidden behind his own eye (scalpel provided).
How Easy Is It To Achieve? Reasonably. Though you'd be put in a pretty awkward position if you were called upon to testify under oath in court.
If You Really Have To: Then you had better sleep with one eye open…
Do work on your bedside manner
By the time Saw III arrived, the man behind Jigsaw, John Kramer, was in extremely poor health, with his brain cancer leaving him bed-ridden and at the point of death. ER doctor Lynn Denlon (Bahar Soomekh) was kidnapped and tasked with keeping Kramer alive so that he could oversee the end of his latest game.
She does well, and, as is Kramer's desire, discovers a new found appreciation for life after her challenge. But, Jigsaw's apprentice Amanda is jealous of Lynn, and that explosive collar is set to blow as soon as Kramer flatlines…
How Easy Is It To Achieve? Not the easiest: as well as having the aptitude to take on years of medical training, you need good people skills and an ability to work under pressure.
If You Really Can't: You had best get a speech ready so that you can convince Kramer that despite failing your task, you still learned some valuable life lessons.
Don't commit robbery at a loved one's behest
One of the key factors in Kramer's decision to become the Jigsaw killer and punish those who were reckless with their own lives came when his wife miscarried their unborn baby. In Saw IV , you discover Mrs Jigsaw lost the baby when she was hit by a door while her clinic was robbed by Cecil (Billy Otis).
Cecil later becomes the guinea pig for Kramer's first killer trap, having to push his face into a bunch of knives to free himself from a deadly chair. It's later revealed (in Saw VI , to be precise) that Cecil committed the burglary at Amanda's request, as part of the franchise's elaborate, labyrinthine backstory.
How Easy Is It To Achieve? Relatively simple, if you can steer clear of drug-addled nutjobs.
If You Really Have To: Make sure you know who you're robbing, and ideally wait until the place is empty to avoid any mishaps that could have convoluted repercussions in the future.
Don't be a societal scumbag
In Part Four, lawyer Art Blank (Justin Louis) has to go through all manner of challenges, as part of his punishment for previously defending some pretty despicable types on various trials.
Similarly, Part Six sees the lengthy tribulations of immoral insurance exec William Easton (Peter Outerbridge), who has to pay the consequences for scamming innocent people out of healthcare (including one John Kramer- oops!)
How Easy Is It Too Achieve? To most of us the concept of not being a total bastard isn't too alien, but it's likely to be a bit more of a challenge for these dollar hungry fiends. Easton could certainly take a leaf out of Mr Incredible's book when it comes to helping people out with insurance claims, whereas Blank needs to vet his clients a little more thoroughly.
If You Really Have To: Then do your best to protect yourself from the inevitable trap. We recommend Easton gets a dog-handling body-suit to protect him from the acid syringe trap, whereas Blank needs to practise his ventriloquism skills for when his gob gets stitched up.
Do put your own feelings before your abusive husband's
In Saw IV , SWAT man Rigg is facing a series of tests of his own, one of which involves an abused wife he once investigated.
Morgan (Janet Land), the lady in question, has been skilfully impaled back-to-back with her husband, with all of the spikes avoiding her vital organs and piercing his. To save her own life, she's got to remove the spikes, which is going to be bad news for her other half.
How Easy Is It To Achieve? Just focus on the nasty fella's negative traits and you'll be winning your real-life game of Operation in no time.
If You Really Can't: Make sure you keep your mobile phone fully charged at all times, lest you need to call an emergency ambulance to get you out of a sticky scrape.
Don't do as Jigsaw does
Do as he says! We don't buy the first movie's flawed logic which backs up the claim that Jigsaw isn't actually a killer because he just puts people into escapable traps: we're pretty a certain a court would still convict him of murder.
But it turns out Jigsaw (or at least one of his apprentices) doesn't like it if you go ahead and do some murdering yourself. Take Seth (Joris Jarsky). After murdering Hoffman's little sister, and escaping with a short sentence, he gets strapped into a pendulum slicer, and can't even escape after crushing his own hands.
How Easy Is It To Achieve? It depends on the intensity of your psychotic feelings.
If You Really Have To: Then you probably deserve some grisly retribution in all honesty, so don't come complaining to us.
Do carry a biro with you at all times
Not everyone who gets slammed in a trap ends up dying in there. Take FBI agent Peter Strahm (Scott Patterson).
On his hunt for the killer, he refuses to give up, and wakes up at one point with his head locked in a small tank that is filled with water. He must be praising his decision to always carry a trusty biro on his person though, as the resourceful chap uses his pen to perform a swift tracheotomy on himself.
How Easy Is It To Achieve? Hats off to the guy, it's not something we'd ever fancy doing for a dare.
If You Really Can't: What, you can't shove a biro in your pocket? What about a Swiss Army knife? A couple of plasters?
Do work as a team
Don't always presume that Jigsaw automatically wants you to come to harm, just because he has put your life in danger for the sake of his own amusement. Think of your trap as a corporate team building day: that's what the five victims of Saw V should have done.
Only when two make it to the final bloodletting stage of their ordeal, they realise that perhaps shafting their teammates along the way wasn't the best idea. You wouldn't see that on The Crystal Maze .
How Easy Is It To Achieve? In theory, it should be simple and logical, just think of all of the proverbs you've ever heard that declare the importance of teamwork: 'A problem shared…', 'United we stand…' and all that.
If You Really Can't: Then you should sign yourself up for a work away-day, pronto!
Do use your medical knowledge to your own advantage
We were treated to a sneak preview of the opening of Saw 3D , and the familiar return of fan favourite Dr Gordon (Cary Elwes).
With the movie looking like it's going to answer years worth of speculation about his fate, we catch up with him crawling down a corridor, having recently sawn off his own foot to escape at the end of the franchise's first chapter. The quick-thinking chap looks to curtail any further blood-loss by introducing the stump of his leg to a searingly hot pipe…
How Easy Is It To Achieve? Recalling a working knowledge of cauterisation is probably easy enough; going through with the act probably requires a bit more will power though.
If You Really Can't: We probably wouldn't blame you.
Don't two-time your boyfriend(s)
Saw 3D 's opening trap sees two guys and a girl as various ends of a trap that features a worrying number of circular saws.
The infamous puppet arrives to tell the lads that the girl they've been seeing has been playing them, and gives them a choice: drive the machine forward to slice open your rival, or hold it steady to dissect your cheating missus (who's suspended above). Hmmm?
How Easy Is It To Achieve? That probably depends on the hunkiness of the guys in question.
If You Really Have To: Make sure you two-time a pair of guys you trust to do the right thing, should you end up in a triple-ended murder machine.
Do... Face Your Fears!
Last week, a couple of Total Film guinea pigs (Dan and Matt) were sent to Thorpe Park to take on Saw: The Ride and Saw Alive (a live-action horror maze). If this prospect wasn't scary enough, then the fact we'd be strapping on fear measuring kit (to test heart rates, facial reactions, and perspiration level) made things all the more daunting.
With more than a little macho pride at stake, we took on the challenge and lived to tell the tale. You can check out the helmet cam videos of the ride on Total Film's YouTube channel (watch Dan's here and Matt's here )
We came away with our lives but what about our dignity? Well, during Saw Alive Dan's 'Fright %' hit 35, with a maximum heart rate of 207, while Matt reached 18% 'Fright', with his heart rate hitting a max of 215.
On Saw: The Ride , Dan reached 33% 'Fright', compared to Matt's 14%, but both guys' heart rates topped 200 again.
Verdict? Well, we reckon that's pretty respectable, but perhaps we need a Halloween horror marathon just to prove ourselves...