How does a game that came out in 2018 suddenly take the world by storm? The online game Among Us was originally released back in 2018, yet many people knew nothing of it until this year. This game features up to 10 players who each play as a small astronaut trying to survive after landing at a base. However, among the players are the Impostors. The job of the Impostors is to kill off everyone until the number of Impostors is equal to the number of crewmates. For instance, two Impostors that are left with two crewmates would win.
While this game is simple and not groundbreaking with graphics or artwork, it has still taken the world by storm. The characters are just small bean-shaped creatures with legs and arms that suddenly pop out of their bodies. The map is a flat image of a ship, so it is pretty basic as far as graphics go. It seems that people rediscovered this hidden gem throughout the COVID-19 quarantine, and it has taken off ever since. It flooded many social media apps and took over quicker than any Impostor could.
With the increased popularity of the game, the buzz on various social media platforms increased as well. TikTok was attacked by hundreds of cosplays, Twitter was swarmed with fan art, and Instagram flooded with both. Etsy, Depop, and RedBubble were filled with fan-made merchandise of these little bean-shaped characters. This prompted Innersloth, the game’s creator, to request that all fan-made merchandise be taken down. They had not expected the game to suddenly blow up after it had been out for a few years, so they had no merchandise policy in place at the time. After all, people were profiting off their creation, and they did not have a merchandise line themselves. This did not mean they did not want fans to have fun and make merch; they just needed to lay down some guidelines to protect their business. They encouraged people to have fun and enjoy the games while asking that everyone respect their wishes until the policy is in place. Even with all of these frustrations, the game remains very popular.
So why has this game suddenly captivated everyone? TikTok cosplayer KittenRose.Cos, also known as Atlas, has offered to share his view on the topic.
“Among Us is very similar to a game I played as a child called ‘Mafia.’ Mafia was a large part of my childhood, so Among Us has been a throwback of sorts. I feel the simple graphics add to the charm. Sure, games with very detailed graphics are amazing…[sometimes] simple is nice. I decided to cosplay from Among Us because of the freedom I have to create my character. The simple storyline of the game gives me the freedom to also give each color a personality, backstory, and outcome of my own choosing.”Media by Atlas (Kittenrose.cos).
As of now, the future of Among Us is uncertain. There had been word of a second and better game, but Innersloth has since reached out stating it had been cancelled. Their wish is to make the original game better itself. While there is a possibility that the game continues to grow, there is also a fear of burnout among players. Only time will tell if this game is a one-hit wonder.