Released: 17th August 2018
Among Us is a multiplayer social deduction game by Innersloth, played with four to ten different people through LAN or online. Taking place aboard a spaceship, the crewmates must repair it before the impostors kill them all or sabotage the ship!
The game differs depending on who you’re playing as. Crewmates need to finish their assigned tasks (effectively minigames such as Simon Says), keep track of what others are doing, avoid getting killed by the impostors, and stop sabotages. Impostors on the other hand need to pretend they’re doing their tasks as they discreetly kill powerless crewmates and use vents to move around. Nobody is allowed to talk until a dead body is reported or an emergency meeting is initiated, which starts a discussion phase where players try to figure out who is the most suspicious, followed by a voting phase to decide who to kick out of the station.
What makes Among Us unique to other multiplayer games is the mashing of its team-based multiplayer aspects with social deduction classics like Werewolf or Mafia. The best impostors I have played with were not the ones who just killed whoever happened to be alone, but the ones who deceived me into thinking they’re innocent by deliberately letting me live when I was most vulnerable. It’s a game of smarts and manipulation more than that of skills.
Although the game is generally fun to play, I advise playing with a group of friends, preferably in a private room. You can expect nearly a quarter to half the participants in public rooms to disconnect at the beginning of the game, and sometimes the lone impostor may disconnect, granting the crewmates an instant win. Those reporting bodies may not even respond or provide information in a timely manner. Fortunately, the typical game lasts for around ten minutes, meaning it’s easy to leave a public room for another.
Artstyle and Audio
Among Us uses a simple, cartoonish artstyle with armless blob-like astronauts as its protagonists. Interactive elements on the spaceship are denoted by their thick black outlines. Each player is assigned a unique color (which is used to refer to a specific person in discussion), though there seems to be no accessibility features for folks suffering from colorblindness at the time of writing. Overall, the art is nice though nothing spectacular. The game doesn’t have much in the way of audio, apart from the ambience and occasional sound effects.
Though the game has a fair bit of customization for your character such as changing clothes and hats, pets are apparently unavailable in the itch.io version for unknown reasons.
Playing a couple rounds of Among Us felt like a fresh break from the typical competitive multiplayer games. It’s perfect for quick five-minute runs or playing for hours on end. In addition, the game supports cross-platform multiplayer with PC (both itch.io and Steam!), Android and iOS, allowing you to play with literally everyone!