By Rayyan Ahmad
Among Us, by developer InnerSloth, exploded in popularity last month. Even though the game was released in the summer of 2018— being 2 years old— it earned over 18 million downloads in August according to Gamespot. The game then earned another 41.9 million mobile downloads in September, growing exponentially in those 2 months. The game can be played on three different location servers, across Asia, North America, and Europe. It has also risen in fame among students at Glenelg and other Howard County Public Schools.
On Steam, the PC gaming platform, Among Us has also risen to be a very well known game. Among Us is available on Steam for the price of $5.00. It is also available on the App Store and Google Play; it can be played on mobile devices including Android and IOS. “I haven’t played the game yet, but some of my friends are planning to do it together over the weekend,” says Pierce Pusheck, a Senior at Glenelg High School. Not only has Among Us become well known among kids, it has also caught the eyes of many online gamers (Ninja, Pewdiepie, Mr.Beast, e.t.c). Games are available publicly with random people, or privately with certain friends. With all this popularity surrounding the game and more people joining everyday, it is very important to understand how the game works.
Among Us is a multiplayer party game that can be played by four to ten players. The game takes place in space with astronauts that are prepping for a launch. When the game begins, each player is randomly assigned either a role as a crewmate or an imposter (maximum of 3). The imposters' goal is to kill and frame members of the crew, sabotage the ship, and avert blame, all without getting caught. The imposter wins if there are more or the same number of imposters as crewmates. The crewmates’ jobs are to complete all their assigned tasks or vote out the imposters before they win. After a kill, a crewmate needs to identify the location of the body or call an emergency meeting to discuss alibis and the location of other players to see who could possibly be the imposter. At the end of the designated time, players need to all vote for who could possibly be the imposter or skip the voting— decision is made by the majority of votes. If a person gets a majority of votes, they are eliminated. “My friends and I have a group to play Among Us together every Tuesday night and on the weekends,” says Chris Heller, another Senior from Glenelg. “We use an online voice chat feature to communicate during voting, so we can all talk and listen to what might have occurred during the game”. Students all over the county are playing Among Us with each other, using it to hang out with friends while many are stuck at home. The game also has a type in chat if players are not able to talk online.
With this interesting game quickly catching traction, it is essential to find imposters as fast as possible and get rid of them. As a crewmate there are multiple strategies to follow to isolate and identify imposters. “As a crewmate, I always like to stay in a pair or a group of three, so if someone gets killed in our group I can report it, or if a kill happened somewhere else I know who the killer cannot be,” says Ryan McKee, a Senior from River Hill High School. There are setbacks to this strategy, maybe if one groups with an imposter and gets killed. Another tip that could help is staying nearby to different people. With this, crewmates can have close eye on each other making it easier to identify if kills happen and avoid getting killed without the imposter looking suspicious.
As an imposter there are also tactics to use to avoid detection and annihilate everyone in the game. As an imposter, players have the ability to sabotage areas of the map that result in different things being activated. Sabotaging the reactor or oxygen forcing cremates to fix those areas of the map before time runs out, or they will lose. If imposters want to kill players while they are near crewmates, they can sabotage lights which gives crewmates limited vision which makes it difficult to see any “uncertain” events take place. Another strategy imposters use is known as vent-hopping. Imposters have the ability to go inside and travel through vents located in various locations across the map. “When I am the imposter, I try to find players that are isolated and near vents,” says Ethan Bomhardt, another GHS Senior. “Then I approach them and kill them. After doing so, I hop in a vent and move as far from the body as possible, so no one would grow suspicious of me.” This idea also has certain drawbacks, if an imposter vented just as another player walked by and saw the murder. Another possibility is venting to an area where there are crewmates, so someone sees you venting and knows you are an imposter.
Among Us is a very interesting game where many friend groups or even strangers can get together and play a fast-paced, murder mystery. The game is gaining more and more popularity as time goes on and players are improving their skills and deductive reasoning while also having a fun time.