While millions of people remained locked in their homes in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19, many have turned to video games and streaming to keep in touch with their loved ones around the world. The wildly popular game Among Us, a game created by the company Innersloth, provides a fun way to blow off some steam and socialize with up to 15 people through a local Wi-Fi connection or online server.
Among Us is a game of collaboration and cooperation, but also duplicity and betrayal. At the beginning of the game, players are given the role of either crewmate or impostor and are released to complete tasks around a spaceship. The objective of the crewmates is to fill the group taskbar to fix the ship and beat the impostor, who is secretly sabotaging the ship and killing off crewmates under the group’s radar. When a body is found, crewmates can report the body and call an emergency meeting to alert the rest of the group. Players are then brought to a message screen where they can discuss what they know about the impostor and their suspicions about who it may be.
The impostor must try to blend in and attempt to prove their innocence to continue playing the game or accuse others of being suspicious (“sus”). After the discussion, the group votes for who they think the impostor is. The player with the majority of the votes gets ejected from the ship and becomes a ghost for the remainder of the game. If all of the tasks are finished before the impostor can kill everyone, the crewmates win, but if the imposter manages to kill off all of the crewmates, the win goes to them.
The game was released in June 2018 but did not receive the attention and popularity it now holds until late 2020. Since then, the creators have unleashed a hailstorm of updates to make the game more enjoyable.
In celebration of the game’s third birthday, the creators gave their growing audience the updates they have been asking for. On an Among Us blog post, the community director at Innersloth, Victoria Tran, offered some details about the update and noted a few minor bug fixes. This included the addition of 15-player lobbies, six brand new colors, updated art, a new kill screen meeting menu, mobile controller support and other new abilities.
Players are especially excited about the visor cosmetics and new colors the creators have included. Upon entering a lobby, each person can pick a color, hat and skin for their character to be recognized by others. For example, if the red character is spotted standing over the yellow character’s dead body, it might be a good idea to say that the red character was acting suspicious in the next meeting. But you have to be careful that they don’t point the finger back at you! Since the new update, players can also choose between the colors banana, tan, rose, gray, maroon and coral for their characters, in addition to the other 12 colors originally included in the game.
Along with the announcement of the update came the sneak peek on the Among Us TikTok account for the plans for the year, sending fans into a frenzy. The Among Us Roadmap lays out the current plan for the additions that the team is working on. One of the first bits of news is the proclamation of a brand new map, which came as a surprise for many in the Among Us community. The game’s latest map, The Airship, came out on March 31 after many months of keeping players waiting. Thus far, there have been no details about what the new map will feature. “I’m sworn to secrecy,” Tran writes on the Among Us Roadmap blog post. “I’m bad at secrets and I would like to keep my job.” With the game being as popular as it is, it may be a good idea to be prepared to wait a few months for the reveal of the game’s fifth map.
Along with these major updates, game achievements that allow players to prove their skills and accomplishments will be arriving soon. The achievement seen in the sneak peek TikTok video was “Get 5 Total Kills” as the impostor. In-game statistics, such as the number of times a player has reported a body or the total times they have been murdered, can already be found on the game’s main menu; however, adding these achievements will give the especially competitive gamers something to strive toward. The team promises that players’ save data and the achievements they earn will be linked to their accounts across all platforms.
That’s not all the excitement the game has to offer: Among Us fans are rolling with anticipation after the announcement of new player roles. As of the game’s June update, the only two roles are crewmate and impostor. Downloading certain game modifications have made several other interesting roles possible, such as the Town of Us mod created by the user “slushiegoose” on GitHub.
These source codes are not intended for the game, so it is important to download with caution. The Town of Us mod includes 19 new roles including the jester (a player that deliberately attempts to get ejected in order to win), the mayor (who is allowed to vote multiple times during meetings) and the sheriff (a crewmate who has the power to kill the suspected impostor). The sneak peek offered a glimpse at two of the new roles: sheriff and scientist. It is unsure what these two roles will encompass until further details are revealed.
Finally, Among Us invites players to a violent game of hide-and-seek in a new game mode. Without many details of what this may look like, the assumption is that it will be similar to the original game. The impostor is the seeker and will attempt to find and kill all crewmates before the crew can fill up the taskbar. Certain settings such as low vision or speed can make it more difficult for the impostor to find the other crewmates.
Among Us is available for free on all mobile devices, and PC and Nintendo Switch for only $5. The team is currently working on making the game accessible for consoles like Xbox and PlayStation due to popular demand.
With over 515 million monthly active players and over 350 million downloads, there is a lot for the team to celebrate. It is clear that the Among Us crew has been listening to the players’ concerns and requests and has been working hard to ensure that everything they put out is exactly the way the community wants it. These new additions to the game will provide new ways to play and interact with friends in an enhanced, more stylish manner. Now major fans and players will just have to patiently wait for these updates.