‘Among Us’ takes off among Acalanes students

Pandemic shutdown may add to game’s popularity


Esports and video games are part of everyday life for teens. In recent years iconic games such as Fortnite exploded in popularity. Although developers released the video game “Among Us” in 2018, its title is just now blowing up.

“Among Us” creates a fun social environment for players in a game of strategy and stealth, which exercises your inner detective.

In “Among Us,five to 10 players set out on a map, with one or two players randomly selected to act as the imposter. The players not selected as impostors, who are known as crewmates, perform tasks around the map in the form of minigames. The goal of the game is for the imposters to kill the crewmates before they finish all their tasks or vote out the imposters. Someone can trigger a vote by finding a body and reporting it, or by calling an emergency meeting using the emergency button. After the imposter kills a player, the player’s body is left lying on the ground. As other players run past a body they have the option to report it. Players can only talk when a vote is going on. A typical game takes five to 10 minutes. 

Its simplicity is a possible reason why the game is so popular.

 “‘Among Us’ is a perfect example that a game does not have to have amazing graphics or concepts to be popular. ‘Among Us’ is a relatively simple two dimensional game that has a very enjoyable player experience,” Acalanes sophomore Austin Bishop said.

Along with the pleasant elementary interface, the game is extremely accessible. Players can purchase it for $5 on a computer and for free on a phone.

Although “Among Us” hit the market in 2018, it was not well-known until Aug. 2020. Its popularity increased because of the popular streaming platform, Twitch.

“I saw my favorite streamers, “Ninja” and “Myth,” playing “Among Us” and streaming it. It looked like a lot of fun,” sophomore Andrew Sappal said.

One possible factor for the game’s blowup is the COVID-19 school shutdown, which decreased in-person socialization. In any case,  “Among Us” provides students with a new and exciting way to spend time with friends.

“I don’t think that it would be as popular [without the shutdown] due to it being a way to communicate and have fun with others,” sophomore James Cortez said.

“Among Us” stands out to some because of its interesting gameplay experience. One unique aspect to “Among Us” is the communication in the game. Unlike most games, “Among Us,” requires complete silence until a meeting. 

“Because of the constant silence, I’m always wary of people. Whenever I see someone,  I’m automatically suspicious,” sophomore Jack Bayless said.

The game captures thousands of players’ attention through its simple user experience, unique aspects, and its ability for creativity.

“I don’t even play the game often, but I still watch tons of YouTube videos of others playing it together because it makes really funny and enjoyable content,” junior Brooke Blacklidge said. “It’s really heartwarming to see that people can have something in common when they can’t really physically see each other, even if it’s just a video game.”