Among Us! is provided by Innersloth LLC., and can be acquired for free on both App Store and Google Play. It is also available on Steam for its PC version. This game allows players to participate in the gaming session from different platforms (crossplay possible) either with random online players or with selected members on their own local server. The game can accommodate a minimum of 4 players to carry out the game plot and a maximum of 15 players. Those 4-15 players are automatically divided into two types of identities in the game, namely the crewmen and imposters. There will be at least one imposter and three for the most depending on the specific number of total players online. In other words, the crewmen imposter ration is 4:1. Different roles take on different game goals and corresponding approaches, which will be introduced shortly after. Currently, this game incorporates four maps(The Skeld, MIRA HQ, Polus and the Airship) for the story to unfold. Regardless of the player number and gaming map, the ultimate game rule remains basically the same. On the one hand, for the crew members, their game goal is to successfully complete their tasks before their mates are all killed, or, they can hold emergency meetings to vote out certain suspect who turns out to be a real impostor. To be more specific, when players join the game and get started, they would immediately know their own roles in the current session. However, the crewmen players would only know their own identity while the other ones remaining unidentified to them. Meanwhile, the imposters would know both their own and who are their fellow imposters if there are any. In terms of the gameplay, although the game goal is rather clear, each type of players don’t have to stick to one fixed approach each time. Instead, there are multiple methods to get to their gaming objectives respectively. For impostor players, to win the game, they don’t necessarily need to kill all of the crewmen; sometimes they don’t event need to kill a single person at all. There are mainly three means to serve the aim: 1) kill as many as you can until impostors outnumber the crewmen. This approach is more doable when there are multiple impostors. 2) sabotage the tasks and cause immediate technical failures to drag down the task-fulfillment rate while you also try to kill crew members. This method is very common and players usually combine sabotage and killing together to win the game. 3) another no-kill method is to cause time-sensitive failures for crewmen to fix. If they fail to handle the timed tasks, they lose the game immediately when time is up. For crew members, apart from the above mentioned two winning methods, they also have their “dead crewmen” as “ghost players” who can continue helping with the tasks in a limited scope.
This game didn’t draw much public attention during its initial years of release, yet it has gained quite a lot of popularity recently. Some players complain that this game doesn’t allow in-game direct chatting or audio conversation among players, I think this feature instead enhances the uniqueness of this detective themed game. It is for the exact reason that players cannot communicate with each other throughout most of the gaming session, the psyche element is escalated by the silence. Without in-game real-time communication, players are doing math in the darkness and the information vacuum increases the tension and suspicion of the game.