The body is found and you hear a loud buzz. “It’s Blue! I saw him leave weapons, where the body was!” says Red convincingly. “How can it be me? I was in navigation with Purple, doing tasks, he can vouch for me.” yells Blue, trying to save his life. “I never saw you in navigation buddy, you are lying, just kick him out.” responds Purple. “Yeah, just kick him.” everyone agrees. “I’m telling you, it’s not me, you are doing a terrible mistake, Purple is lying!” says Blue, desperately trying to convince his friends. And just like so, Purple grabs the impostor win, after framing Blue for the kill he made. Deception and lies are the foundations of this game that took the Internet by storm, but it wasn’t always like that.
Simple but Challenging
Developed and published in 2018 by InnerSloth, which you may have heard about from other titles like The Henry Stickmin Collection and Dig2China, Among Us is an online multiplayer social deduction game where ten players have to work together in a space-themed location, by performing several tasks that are spread across the map, in order to win the game.
But there’s a catch. While the other players are crewmates, one or two of these ten are impostors, which means that they have to go through a different path to secure the win. The impostor’s goal is to kill all the crewmates before they can complete all the tasks, without getting themselves kicked by their fellow players. In the voting sessions, all of the participants can talk it out and eject who they think are the traitors.
Risen From the Dead
In the early stages of its release, Among Us was not the hot hit that it is today. In fact, it wasn’t even close to that, with an average of only 321 concurrent players on Steam, from November of 2018 to April of 2020, according to SteamCharts. Despite being published in 2018, it was only in mid-2020 that Among Us saw a powerful blast in its player base, mostly because of popular Twitch streamer Sodapoppin, who introduced the game to the platform in July of 2020.
After the first impressions, it didn’t take long for all the major content creators, both on Twitch and YouTube, to take a shot at this new up and coming game. Names like xQc, Pokimane, Shroud, Ninja, and PewDiePie all jumped onto the Among Us hype train, astonishing their viewers with cleverly crafted impostor plays and smart crewmate deductions.
Success Amidst Pandemic
As the Covid-19 virus forced everyone to stay at home and practice social distancing, players saw in Among Us an option in which they could have fun whilst continuing to hang out with their friends. In September of 2020, the game reached its peak, witnessing a massive rise in its statistics, reaching more than 100 million total downloads, across PC and mobile.
We also witnessed the Among Us player count mounting up to a whopping 1.5 million concurrent players. As for Twitch alone, Among Us rose to the top of the platform, amounting to 150 million hours of watch time, and 745 thousand peak viewers, according to SullyGnome.
With more party-style games like Fall Guys also being a big success on content creation platforms, we are possibly watching the rise of a genre of videogames that don’t require all those fancy graphics and detailed storylines to be enjoyed and played. Maybe players just want something quick and entertaining that can be enjoyed with friends when they don’t feel like playing anything else.