If you’ve spent time on Twitter or around a person under the age of 30, you’ve probably become familiar with memes featuring colorful Teletubby-esque figures dressed in space suits. These are the players of Among Us, which have skyrocketed in popularity in recent months.
What is this game exactly? Why is it suddenly so popular? What has the US Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (perhaps better known as AOC) dealing with this?
We’ve got everything you need to know about Among Us right here to get you ready for some holiday weekend games.
What is Among Us, and how do you play?
Among Us is an online multiplayer social deduction game from developer InnerSloth, similar to Mafia or Werewolf. You can play with four to ten people – people you know or online with strangers.
In the game, you play as a crew member aboard a spaceship, sky headquarters or planet base, and try to keep your ship together and return to Earth. But one crew member has been replaced by a parasitic shape-shifting alien who wants to take out the rest of the crew before the ship gets home. The problem is, the rogue looks just like everyone else, and will sabotage the ship, sneak through vents, cheat fellow players, and try to trick others, all in an attempt to go unnoticed and kill the rest of the crew. (If you have more players, you can also choose to have more than one cheater. Here’s a guide to being the best cheater you can be.)
Meanwhile, the non-alien crew members have to perform tasks to refurbish the ship and are unable to speak unless a death is reported. Then, via chat, the surviving crew can openly debate who they think the imposter is, and guess who they should vote the ship for. If the imposter is voted out, the crew wins. But if the group accidentally matches a crew member, everyone goes back to the maintenance of the ship until another body is found, and they vote again.
Why is Among Us suddenly so popular?
Among Us was released in June 2018, but suddenly tops the Steam and app download lists, reaching over 86 million downloads by mid-September. Why the sudden increase in popularity?
The answer seems to be Twitch streamers, as popular personalities on the online game streaming platform like Sodapoppin, Pewdiepie, Shroud and Ninja have all played. On Twitch Among Us has 3.3 million followers – by comparison, Fortnite has 3.7 million.
Tons of Among Us memes have also surfaced on Twitter and Reddit, further spreading the word about the game. It’s also possible that many people have already exhausted othersduring coronavirus quarantines, and this is something new and easy to play from afar. In addition, the game supports cross-platform play on PC and mobile in both local and online multiplayer games, making it easier for people to play together no matter what device they are on. Many players also use the Discord platform to chat with friends in real time while playing.
On Tuesday,alongside streamers Pokimane and Hasanabi, in an effort to inspire people to vote. The stream peaked at 439,000 views, making it the third highest viewed single stream in Twitch history. (The all-time record is that of Ninja, when he Viewership ranged from 300,000 to 400,000 for most of the stream.
How much does Among Us cost and what devices can you play the game on?
Among Us is free to play iOS and Android devices (you can download it from the App Store or Google Play Store). Or it costs $ 5 to play on a PC (you can download it on Steam or itch.io).
Be warned, the free mobile version does have ads. After downloading and opening the game on your device, you will see a popup describing AdMob usage and data collection. If you’d like to turn off ads and data collection, you can buy the ad-free version of the app for $ 2 by tapping Remove Ads and following the prompts to select your payment method.
For some players, there is one way to get around the ads: if the Among Us host pays the $ 2 for the ad-free version, the game will be ad-free for the entire party, even if the others haven’t paid for it.
You’ll also find microtransactions in-game, both on the mobile and PC version, with the option to purchase pets, skins, and hats. Some are free, but paid or not, none of these items affect gameplay.
A big advantage of Among Us is the ability to play seamlessly with people across devices, making it easy to jump into a game with friends or strangers.
How many people can play together among us?
You can play Among Us with a party of four to ten people.
Where’s the sequel to Among Us?
While the developer had InnerSloth Among Us 2 planned, in September the studio decided to cancel it and instead focus on expanding the content offered in Among Us. The developers said the decision was made because of the game’s recent spike in popularity, according to a blog post.
“All of the content we planned for Among Us 2 will go to Among Us 1 instead,” the post said. “This is probably the more difficult choice, because it means going deep into the core code of the game and reworking different parts of it. We’ve planned a lot of things and we’re excited to bring new content to everyone while you keep playing. “
Planned new content includes new servers, colorblind support, a friends / account system and a new stage, but there is no ETA for when these changes may come.
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