Among us: the right thing for the right time

By Jack Xu

During this unique time, due to COVID-19, many people are staying at home with less face-to-face conversations. The world may have started out by playing “Animal Crossing: New Horizons” for amusement, but as time has passed, players are now hungry for a space filled with chaos and deceit, and that’s exactly what “Among Us” is all about.

Imposters win after turning all crewmates into ghosts. (Photo by Jack Xu)

“Among us” was originally created by Inntersloth in 2018. The idea of the game was inspired by the popular 1986 party game “Mafia,” also known as “Werewolf,” according to Amy Liu, who is one of the three developers of “Among Us.”

The structure of the game is simple: a player is either a crewmate or the imposter. The imposter must pretend to do the assigned tasks in the game while killing each crewmate one by one. When a body is discovered, a crewmate can call an emergency meeting gathering everyone in the game to have a group chat trying to figure out who the imposter truly is.

One thing I love about this game is the personal customs you can select. My favorite is the pumpkin hat and the candy-cane hat. There are also different clothes, pets and colors for players to choose from, which further adds to the experience of playing the game. Even though it does not add any status, “Among Us”  provides customizations that allow players to fully reveal their personalities and immerse themselves in the game.

After my first time playing “Among Us,” I realized the intensity of the game absolutely doesn’t match the description, which reads: “just a game full of conversation with friends.” 

I was a crewmate in the first round, carefully walking around the map doing tasks, avoiding everyone I could see, thinking everyone looked suspicious. Then suddenly, the most unwanted thing happened. One minute, I was completing tasks and the next, half of my screen was red with the imposter kill animation stabbing me in the back multiple times.

The experience of playing “Among Us” is very different from other video games. It’s not like “Minecraft,” where you have tightening nerves every second, feeling afraid a creeper is going to come up behind you and send you to Heaven. 

Neither is it like an “Animal crossing,” where you are collecting resources with friends and living your life like a billionaire relaxing and enjoying every moment. “Among us” is a pleasant mixture of both — intense when trying not to be eliminated by mystery imposters, but also enjoyable and relaxing when arguing with friends and telling jokes. 

I would definitely recommend this game to anyone who hasn’t experienced it. But you must fully immerse yourself in the role of crewmate or imposter.

In the end, “Among Us” is a game full of trolling, betrayal and logical reasoning. Players must gather evidence and argue their point. Some say it’s the perfect game to break friendships. Others think it’s a mixture of both love and hate. 

This year may be less than ideal with everything going on around the world, but playing “Among Us” definitely provides a much-needed break from the realities of life.