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How ‘Among Us’ has Become the Defining Game of Fall 2020

Lily%27s+%27Among+Us%27+avatar%2C+%27Vegetable%27

Lily’s ‘Among Us’ avatar, ‘Vegetable’

Meredith Swanson, Assistant Editor-In-Chief: Highlights

Over the past few months, I am sure almost every Hall student has heard of and perhaps tried the wildly popular video game Among Us. For those who are not yet aware, the premise of the game is that up to 10 “crewmates” are on a spaceship and must complete various maintenance tasks. However, up to 3 individuals are murderous ‘impostors’ who will win if the crewmates do not quickly determine their identity and vote them off the spaceship.

I would like to emphasize that my personal video game experience is very limited, but even I have not been able to ignore the ubiquitous presence of this game- this also reassures potential players that the game is easy to figure out. I was introduced to this game by my best friend Lily, and I was suspicious of the concept at first, but it turned out to be pretty awesome. 

The game has also played a significant role in my enjoyment of hybrid school. While I missed seeing my close friends in school, it was relatively easy to stay connected and spend time with them.  I surprisingly found that one of the things I missed most about in-person school was passing encounters with classmates who I don’t consider close friends. 

With google meets, the dimension of inter-classmate connection is very much lost, but Among Us provides a fun outlet for groups of acquaintances to spend time together virtually. For example, I have been able to connect with my AP Physics and Chorale classes through Among Us. 

Among Us has existed since 2018, but it makes sense that it rose to such immense popularity during the pandemic, especially with teenagers returning to school. Obviously, the majority of us are starving for social connection with people our own age, and Among Us is versatile in that you can play with both people you know and people that you don’t (though that is very hit or miss). 

Its surge in popularity is due in part to popular Twitch streamers, but this alone would not have led to the popularity it has seen with people who are not in touch with the video game community. The fact that Among Us is very much a social game is, in my opinion, the primary reason for its sudden popularity.

 The social element led it to be spread mainly through word of mouth in encounters just like the one between Lily and myself, in which she relentlessly asked me to download the game to play it with her (I highly recommend being impostor with your best friend-it’s hilarious). 

The game also has a significant TikTok and YouTube presence, which is another way in which it facilitates virtual connections, as these communities are generally based on common interests. The meme element of the game allows Among Us to be not only a game, but a shared cultural experience for teenagers, who developmentally require such things that differentiate them from their parents. 

If you haven’t tried this game yet- check it out!