Want to play Among Us with your kids (or buddies) but you don’t know the first thing about modern gaming? Relax, we’ve got you covered!
Among Us is a game which has skyrocketed in popularity over the last few months, even though it’s been out for about 2 years now (as of this article). It was developed by the American indie game studio InnerSloth.
Although it’s technically a videogame, it’s more like a party game that’s played on computer (or mobile), similar to the classic You Don’t Know Jack series or perhaps the more modern Jackbox series.
Specifically, Among Us is a social deduction game, similar to Werewolf or Murder Mystery Dinners – this is why it’s such a great game for non-gamers to get into.
Among Us can be played on PC or Mobile. The PC version costs about $5 USD, the Mobile version is 100% free. There’s also a way to play it for free on PC that’s 100% legal, but I’m not going to cover it here. You can read about it in this link though, if you like.
The main thing to know is that Among Us has crossplay. In other words, PC gamers and Mobile gamers can play Among Us together.
If none of that meant anything to you, don’t worry – all will be explained in an easy-to-follow fashion below.
How To Install Among Us: Free on Mobile (Long Version)
Please note: If you’re confused by any of these steps, simply skip ahead to the next section.
First off, you’ll need a GooglePlay account. Chances are you already have one. If not, they’re free and easy to make, so go ahead and do that.
Next, you need to go to the GooglePlay store and download ‘Among Us’.
Given the popularity of the game, there’s a large chance it’ll automatically appear in your recommended section, if not then you can search for it. In either case, this is the kind of thing you’re looking for:
Once you’ve found it, simply click on Install. The download should take less than 5 minutes, and you’re safe to use your phone for other things in the meantime.
One issue you might run into is that your phone might not have much space left. Simply delete one (or more) of your apps. If you can’t decide which app to delete, don’t worry – just choose a social media app, which will be easy to reinstall after you’ve played Among Us. The whole process should be simple and quick enough that you can do this anytime you want to play the game.
In list form, that would look like this (remember, this list is for people who don’t have enough space on their phone):
– uninstall an app (to make room for Among Us)
– install Among Us
– play Among Us
– uninstall Among Us
– reinstall the app
Once you’ve got Among Us installed, it should appear on your phone with all the other apps:
Okay, that’s it for now.
Feel free to skip ahead to the section titled ‘How to prepare for playing Among Us’.
How To Install Among Us: Free on Mobile (Short Version)
Ask your kids (or a tech-savvy friend) to do it for you.
No, I’m not joking.
They probably won’t mind because it won’t take them long, and they might even be happy to do it because they’re happy you’re showing an interest in their hobbies.
Okay, that’s it for now.
Feel free to skip ahead to the section titled ‘How to prepare for playing Among Us’.
How To Install Among Us: PC
The first thing you’ll need to do is log in to your Steam account.
If you don’t have a Steam account, don’t worry – it’s free and easy to set up. You’ll need to install Steam’s Storefront/Library, but that’s a fairly simple matter, and I’m certain you won’t need help with it.
It’s also perfectly safe, as long as you follow the same security rules as everywhere else on the internet (don’t give your password to strangers NO MATTER WHAT etc). You can get Steam for free here.
Once you’ve installed Steam and you’re logged into your Steam account, simply go to the Store tab (if it hasn’t automatically sent you there):
And then use the Search function at the top-right of the screen to search the store for Among Us:
Click on Among Us in the box that drops down from the search area, and you should be brought to the Among Us store page, which should look something like this:
If you scroll down further you’ll notice a list of DLC (DownLoadable Content). You can ignore them if you want – they don’t add anything important to the game (more on this later on).
After purchasing, you’ll be taken to a page that confirms that you’ve bought the game. This page should have ‘Install Content’ roughly in the middle of the screen. Click on ‘Install Content’ to bring up a pop-up that looks similar to this:
Chances are that you’ll just be able to click ‘NEXT’ and install the game. If not, it’s probably because the hard drive you’re installing to doesn’t have enough space, so you’ll need to use the drop-down list to choose a hard drive with some free space:
However, it is VERY unlikely that you don’t enough space for Among Us if you’re on PC. The game is tiny by today’s standards – it’s smaller than, say, ten MP3s.
We could troubleshoot for hours about how to clear hard drive space, because there are so many options and variables, so I won’t cover that here. If you don’t have space, just google ‘how to clear space on my hard drive’ and continue this article when you’re done.
After the game has installed, you’ll probably (definitely if you haven’t played with the Steam settings) see something like this pop up somewhere on your screen:
To run the game, simply find it in your Steam library and click on Play.
There are multiple ways to do this, but if you’re having trouble figuring any of them out on your own, there’s an easy (if convoluted) way to do it.
Simply go back to the Steam store, search for Among Us again, open the Among Us store page, and click on the ‘Play Now’ Button which has now appeared:
Among Us Guide: The goal of the game
This section is just a little primer on the game and what it’s about. Don’t worry, we’re not throwing you into the deep end just yet!
When a game starts, you’ll be given the role of Crewmate or Impostor – you don’t get to choose which.
If you’re a crewmate, your job is to finish doing all your tasks before you’re all killed by the Impostor. If you’re killed, you can continue to do tasks as a ghost.
If you’re the Impostor, your job is to kill off the crew before they can complete all of their tasks – and to avoid suspicion while doing so.
Any player (including the Impostor) can call a meeting so that the crewmates can try to figure out who the Impostor is, so they can remove them from play. This can be done in the Cafeteria (the room where you start) via the Emergency Meeting button, or when a player’s corpse is discovered (i.e. when you’re near a corpse).
The discussion will happen through the text chat, which can be found in the upper-right of the screen when available:
You might also be chatting with buddies over voice chat but that’s a whole other thing, so we won’t address it here.
It should also be noted that, depending on the game/map settings, there can be more than one Impostor. We’re not going to worry too much about that for this article, but it’s something to bear in mind once you’ve gotten the hang of the game and want more of a challenge (or if you’d like the games to last longer).
How to prepare for playing Among Us: Crewmate
When you start Among Us you’ll see a screen that looks like this:
For the moment, we’re just going to learn about how to play – we’ll cover how to customise your character (name, colour, outfit etc) after we get a little practice at Crewmate and Impostor gameplay.
Click on Freeplay, which is a mode that lets you practice doing everything in the game on your own. Choose ‘The Skeld’ because it’s by far the most popular map:
You’ve just started Freeplay on The Skeld.
If you’re on mobile, your screen should now look something like this (the circle in the lower-left of your screen is used to move your character.):
If you’re on PC, your screen should look something like this:
If you’re on PC, you can move around by clicking your left mouse button somewhere on the screen. If you’ve clicked anywhere inside the playable area, your character should move there.
However, I’d suggest PC players go to the Settings menu and change to ‘Mouse and Keyboard’. To do that, click here:
And then choose this:
This will let you move with the WASD keys (try it out, you’ll quickly pick it up) or the arrow keys on your keyboard.
The reason for this is simple: If you’re just using the mouse, you’ll need to stand still to do things such as looking at the map or killing another player.
Standing still will make you vulnerable as a crewmate (if you’re not doing a task you should be always be moving) and also as an Impostor (because standing around is suspicious).
There is, of course, no ‘correct’ control method. I’d suggest trying them out and seeing what feels most comfortable for you. Don’t leave the room yet, though!
Now that you’re comfortable with your chosen control method, you’re ready to begin practising.
See that list in the top-left corner?
That’s your list of tasks, and the bar above it is the task bar. When you’re in an actual game, the task bar will be shared with the other crewmates. That’s how you win as a crew – by completing the task bar before the Impostor kills everyone.
You can minimise the task bar by clicking on it, if you like.
To begin a task, simply stand near it and press the Use button on the lower-right of your screen:
Practice this right now by using the giant button on the table at the bottom of the room, which should bring this up:
As you’ve probably just worked out, this is how you call emergency meetings if you need to. You only have a limited number of times to do so.
Click the big red button in the middle of the screen and you’ll be taken to the discussion screen:
Use the speech balloon in the upper-right of the screen to open/close chat:
Click on a Crewmate to vote against them (Tick means Yes, Cross means Cancel):
Or click down here to skip voting (Tick means Yes, Cross means Cancel):
Obviously, there’s no need to actually vote or call meetings in Freeplay mode, but it’s good to get some practice in now.
Normally, when you finish your tasks, that’s it – you’re done, and you’re just waiting for the other crewmates to finish their tasks.
In Freeplay, however, you’ll be given a new list of tasks to do. If you do this enough times, you’ll probably get a chance to do all the tasks. I’d highly suggest doing that – you don’t want to come across a new task in the middle a game with other people, after all!
I’m not going to explain how to do the tasks because they’re mostly simple and intuitive, and there’s plenty of information on the internet already about how to do them. Also, I had a lot of fun working them out and I don’t want to take that away from you.
While you’re wandering around learning the tasks, take this opportunity to learn the layout of the map – you’ll need to be able to get to certain areas as quickly as possible if they get sabotaged by the Impostor.
If you want to, you can access the map by clicking on this button at the top-right of your screen:
Or, if you’re using mouse and keyboard as I suggested earlier, you can just press the Tab key on your keyboard. In any case, the map should look like this:
As a beginner, the next sentence is probably the most important tip in this entire article.
Some tasks have a visual component, which means that you can use them to prove to other people that you’re not an Impostor – because Impostors can’t do tasks. Some visual tasks have multiple stages, and it’s always the final stage that has the visual component.
These tasks are:
– Empty garbage
– Empty chute
– Submit Scan
– Clear asteroids
– Prime shields
It’s worth noting that priming the shields only works the first time in each game. In other words, if you weren’t the first one to do it, there’s no visual component.
As you play around with the tasks in Freeplay, keep an eye out for these visual tasks so you can see what they look like for yourself.
Once you’re done practising all the tasks you want to, there are two more quick things to note.
Head to the Admin area and click on the computer on the left of the console. That should bring up a map. This map will show you the position of the other players (they’ll all be yellow though, so you can’t tell who is who). This map doesn’t update, so don’t just stand there waiting for something to happen:
Finally, head to the Security area and access the cameras. Unlike the Admin map, the cameras update in real-time. The trade-off there is that they don’t cover the whole ship, just the major junctions on the map:
PROTIP: When playing with others, it is considered extremely poor form to use the Security cameras before you’ve finished all of your tasks. It’s okay to use the Admin console very quickly if you’re already in the Admin area.
Okay, it’s time to head back to the Cafeteria because now we’re going to practice being an Impostor. To change over, just click on this computer here (which only appears in Freeplay mode) and select Be_Imposter.exe:
How to prepare for playing Among Us: Impostor
I hope you memorized the map during your Crewmate practice, because you need to understand how it works in order to be an efficient Impostor.
While it’s true that the social aspect of the game is mainly played during the meetings, a skilled Impostor can wipe out a whole crew before a meeting is called – especially if there’s only 4 players.
The Impostor wins by removing the Crewmates, either by killing them or convincing the other players to vote against Crewmates during the meetings. Once the number of Crewmates is equal to the number of Impostors, the Impostor wins. So, if there’s only one Impostor, they need to remove the Crewmates until there’s only one left. If there are two Impostors, they need to remove the Crewmates until there’s only two left.
Back to Freeplay: Now that you’re an Impostor, the ‘Use’ button on the lower-right of the screen has been replaced with a ‘Kill’ button (which is why the Impostors can’t do tasks). Similar to the tasks, to kill a crewmate just stand near them and press ‘Kill’:
As you wander around killing the fake Crewmates, you’ll notice there’s a kill cooldown, meaning that you can’t just wander around killing people whenever you want:
There’s also a ‘Sabotage’ button as well:
If you click it, it’ll bring up a map that looks like this:
Simply click on the icon for an area to sabotage it. The red X means you close the doors for that area, the other icons sabotage the attached systems – Electrical will turn the lights off so the Crewmates can’t see very well, for instance.
Just like killing, sabotage also has a cooldown. It’s possible to win by sabotaging certain areas, but sabotaging is usually a distraction more than a threat (especially in the larger games).
Practice killing until you’re bored with it, and then try using the vents. If you’re standing near a vent, you can enter it, which will remove you from the map and allow you to travel around unseen (click the arrows to use the vents to move in that direction):
As the Impostor you may, if you wish to, report a body you’ve killed – the option is there right above the Sabtoage/Vent icon (it’s in the same place if you’re Crewmate or Impostor). If done right, it’s a fantastic way to throw suspicion off of yourself. If done wrong, you’ve just signed your death warrant.
One of my favourite Impostor tricks is to kill someone while some else is nearby, report the body, and then blame the other person. This is very risky, but the payoff can be huge.
Okay, that’s about it for Impostor practice. Now, how to customise your character.
Among Us Guide: How to customise your character
Among Us has a weird design as far as this goes – you can’t do it from the menu, you have to be in a game. Don’t worry, you won’t get thrown into a public game if you follow these instructions!
First, we need to get back to the main menu. If you haven’t had to do this already, here’s how to do it.
If you’re on mobile, click on the cog/gear in the upper-right of the screen:
And then choose Leave Game:
The same will work on PC, or you can just press the Esc key (upper-left on your keyboard) to bring up the menu.
Now you’re back at the Main Menu. Click on Local:
What you’ve just done is told the game that you want to host a game on your local network. If you don’t know what this means, don’t worry. All you need to know is that you haven’t opened a public game, and if someone does join (which is VERY unlikely) they can’t start the game – only you can (because you’re the host).
At the top of the screen, you should see the word ‘Player’. In any case, click up there to change your name. I’ve changed my name to WHOLESOME:
Once you’re happy with your name, click on ‘Create Game’. Again, don’t worry, you’re not actually hosting a game.
You’re now in the lobby – this is where people hang out before the match itself has started. If you get close to the lobby computer, your ‘Use’ button will change to ‘Customise’. Click on it to customize your character:
Click on the tabs at the top of the box to choose colour, headwear, pets (which will probably be completely empty, that’s normal), and an outfit:
Everything you can choose is free. The dollar sign is there if you want to spend money buying extra customisation (this is the DLC I spoke of earlier)
There’s only one more thing to know, and then you’re good to go.
Among Us Guide: How to Join A Game
Even if you’re playing in the same house as someone, chances are they’ll host an Online game instead, because it’s much less hassle (due to a bunch of tech stuff, which doesn’t bear going into here).
If they’re hosting a private game – which they should, especially for your first few games – you’ll need the 6-digit code to join them.
From the main menu, click on Online, and you should be taken to this screen:
On the lower-right of the screen, you can see where to choose which international server to join. Mine’s set to Asia because I’m in Australia, and Asia is closer (which means that the internet connection should be quicker for me than an American server).
You can see down the bottom where to enter the private lobby code, which you’ll need to get from the host (your kid/buddy/whatever).
If you’re both playing on Steam, they can send you the code via a Steam message and you can just copy-paste it by selecting/highlighting the whole code with your left mouse button and hitting Ctrl+C on your keyboard (or you can click your right mouse button on the highlighted code and select ‘copy’ from the menu that pops up).
The code is now invisibly stored on your computer, so click on the code entry box (in Among Us) and hit Ctrl+V and watch it magically appear!
Or, if you’re not on Steam, you’ll have to type it in manually.
CONGRATULATIONS – you’re now ready to start playing Among Us with your kids/buddies!
I’m sure they’ll help you with anything that we haven’t covered here, so the rest of this article will be spent addressing in-game etiquette and a few helpful play tips
Playing Among Us: In-game Etiquette
Although I’ve mentioned some of these throughout the article, here are some things that are considered very rude:
– Calling an Emergency meeting as soon as the game starts
– Calling an Emergency meeting without a good reason
– Using the Security Cameras before you’ve finished all of your tasks
– Outing the other Impostor(s) if you get caught as an Impostor
It’s also kind of rude to talk about non-game related things in the meeting chat – you only get a small amount of time to discuss what’s happening, so don’t waste it asking questions like ‘Do you guys like to watch anime?’ or something equally inane:
However, if you’re a ghost, the crewmates won’t be able to see your chat. The ghosts can chat among themselves about whatever they want, because they can’t contribute to the Crewmate discussion.
Playing Among Us: Playtips to get you started
‘If you know a crewmate is really good at the tasks, keep them alive as long as possible – they’ll have a much easier time doing tasks if they’re a ghost!‘ – Sophia G
‘Everyone gets the same common task (swipe card on Skeld is a good example) so if you’re a Crewmate and you don’t have a common task, and you see someone ‘swiping their card’ they are faking that task and must be an impostor.’ – Skye C
Let’s finish off with few tips from Erin A. Thanks for your input here, Erin!
‘Sabotage the reactor or O2 – depending on what side you’re on, you can kill someone on the right then send everyone to the left (or vice versa).’
‘Close the doors in a room after you kill, to give you more time vent away and have an alibi.’
‘When realigning the engines you can click on the arrow then you align the first engine and it will finish the task so you don’t have to go to the lower engine.’
‘Remember, it’s just a game – so try to have fun!’ – Liam P