Among Us is a multiplayer game for four to fifteen players. Up to three players are randomly and secretly chosen to be the Impostor(s) each round. As of 2021, four playable maps are available, a spaceship called "The Skeld", an office building called "MIRA HQ", a planet base called "Polus", or "The Airship", a setting from Innersloth's Henry Stickmin series. The Crewmates can win the game one of two ways; either by completing all assigned tasks or by ejecting all Impostors. Impostors can likewise win in two ways; either by killing or ejecting all Crewmates,[e] or by sabotaging a critical system on the map (provided the Crewmates do not resolve it in time).[f] At the start of the game, Crewmates are assigned "tasks" to complete around the map in the form of minigames, minipuzzles, and simple toggles, mostly consisting of maintenance work on vital systems such as fixing wires and downloading data. Impostors cannot complete tasks, but may pretend to perform "fake" tasks to feign appearance as legitimate Crewmates. Impostors, however, can perform sabotages, ranging from minor (such as disabling lights, making Crewmates blind) to critical (such as disabling oxygen generators), requiring immediate counteraction by Crewmates to prevent their deaths. Impostors may enter and traverse ventilation ducts (commonly known as "venting"), and kill nearby Crewmates. To help Crewmates identify Impostors, there are various surveillance systems on each map, such as security cameras on The Skeld, a doorlog system with sensors in MIRA HQ, and a vitals indicator in Polus that shows the living status of all players. In addition, certain "visual tasks" provide animated cues, such as scanning oneself in the Skeld's medbay. As Impostors cannot perform tasks, Crewmates can use visual tasks to confirm their identity to nearby Crewmates.
On August 8, 2019, Innersloth released a second map, MIRA HQ, a "tightly packed headquarters roughly the size of The Skeld." A third map, Polus, was added on November 12, 2019, and is set in a research station. The fourth map, the Airship, was released on March 31, 2021, and is based on a location in the Henry Stickmin universe. MIRA HQ and Polus originally cost players US$4 via in-app purchase. Their prices were reduced to US$2 on January 6, 2020, then made free on June 11, 2020. While the map packs are still available for purchase on all platforms, they now only provide the player the skins that were bundled with the maps. According to programmer Forest Willard, the team "stuck with [the game] a lot longer than we probably should have from a pure business standpoint", putting out regular updates to the game as often as once per week. This led to a steady increase in players, causing the game's player base to snowball. Bromander attributed this to the studio having enough savings to keep working on the game even while it was not selling particularly well.
In mid-February 2021, the game added a feature called Quickchat, which replaces the standard chat interface with a series of preset phrases that players must pick from. Players under the age of 13 are required to use Quickchat, but those over 13 are also allowed to use Free Chat, which allows them to type text messages. First announced at The Game Awards 2020, the Airship map was released on March 31, 2021. The Airship features multiple floors, contraptions, tasks, and "more". In addition, Game Awards presenter Geoff Keighley's face was added as a skin. The map itself is based upon the Henry Stickmin series' Toppat Clan Airship. Innersloth also stated that the map would be free to all players. It also features a skin bundle that includes Henry Stickmin-themed cosmetic that can be bought on Steam.
The game's popularity continued into the following months. YouTube reported that videos about Among Us were viewed 4 billion times in September 2020, and TikTok videos related to Among Us had over 13 billion views in October 2020. YouTuber CG5 wrote a song based on the game in September 2020, titled "Show Yourself", and gained over 60 million views in four months.[i] In September 2020, the game exceeded 100 million downloads and its player count rose to 1.5 million concurrent players (nearly 400 thousand of which were on Steam), then peaked at 3.8 million in late September. The sudden increase in players overloaded the game's server, which according to Willard was "a totally free Amazon server, and it was terrible." This forced him to work quickly, under crunch time, to resolve these issues.
Elliott Osange of Bonus Stage considered that the game is "silly fun", but felt that is more fun "to be an Impostor". Craig Pearson of Rock, Paper, Shotgun had the same opinion, found playing as an Impostor "a lot more fun" than playing as a Crewmate, which he called "exhausting". In reference to the game's popularity among streamers, Evelyn Lau of The National said: "Watching the reactions of people trying to guess who the imposter is (and sometimes getting it very wrong) or lying terribly about not being the imposter is all quite entertaining." Alice O'Conner of Rock, Paper, Shotgun described the game as "Mafia or Werewolf but with minigames". Andrew Penney of TheGamer said the game was "worth it for the price" and that "who you play with dictates how fun the game is." L'avis de Tiraxa of Jeuxvideo.com praised the game's Freeplay mode, which offers newer players "to browse the map alone to accommodate the places", as they would need to play several games in order to "perfect their strategies".
As of September 2020[update], Steam Spy estimated that the game had more than 10 million owners on Steam. The Associated Press noted the game was the most downloaded app on the iOS App Store for both iPhones and iPads in October 2020. According to SuperData Research, the game had roughly 500 million players worldwide as of November 2020[update], with the free-to-play mobile version accounting for 97% of players and the buy-to-play PC version accounting for 3% of players, though it was the buy-to-play PC version that generated 64% of the game's gross revenue. Among Us became one of the best selling games of 2020 on Steam, being listed on the platinum category on "The Year's Top 100" list. The Nintendo Switch version's launch sold 3.2 million digital units in December 2020, making it the highest-earning version of the game for the month and one of the best-selling games on the Nintendo Switch.
Among Us was offered as a free game on the Epic Games Store during one week in May 2021. Its average daily player count jumped from around 350,000 players in the weeks before to over 2 million players during the giveaway. On June 29, 2021, Innersloth reported on Twitter that during the game's free promotion on Epic Games Store, at least 15 million copies were claimed.
Epic Games featured a community-created game mode in Fortnite Creative in December 2020 called "The Spy Within", which had very similar mechanics to Among Us, in which among ten players, the others have to complete tasks to earn enough coins within a limited time while trying to deduce which two players are trying to sabotage that effort. Epic later added another (official and internally-developed) limited mode to Fortnite called "Impostors" in August 2021, which was recognized as even a closer take on Among Us, as the same basic mechanics as "The Spy Within" were used, but now taking place within an underground bunker with a layout similar to the Among Us map. Innersloth responded in frustration to this mode, which gave no credit to Innersloth. Innersloth's co-founder Marcus Bromander stated "Is it really that hard to put 10% more effort into putting your own spin on it though?", while studio representative Callum Underwood said that Innersloth was open to collaborations, "Just ask and if you follow some basic rules it's usually fine". In an October 2021 blog posting, Epic Games did credit Innersloth and Among Us as inspirations for the "Impostors" mode. On June 17, 2022, both Epic and Innersloth announced a collab between Fortnite and Among Us, with a "back bling" of a crewmate in interchangeable colors and the "Distraction Dance" from Innersloth's Henry Stickmin franchise available in the Fortnite item shop.
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Be warned, the free mobile version does have ads. Once you download and open the game on your device, you'll see a pop-up detailing its use of AdMob and data collection. If you want to turn off ads and data collection, you can purchase the ad-free version of the app for $2 by tapping Remove Ads, and following the prompts to select your payment method. 2b1af7f3a8