How Among Us, a social deduction game, became this fall’s mega hit – CNBC

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Salvador Rodriguez/CNBC

Among Us is a multiplayer PC and mobile game that has suddenly exploded in popularity, becoming one of the hit video games of 2020. 

Although it was released in June 2018, Among Us did not emerge as a hit until recently, when video game streamers on Amazon’s Twitch service realized it was the perfect game for pandemic quarantines and started streaming their contests.

Developed by InnerSloth, a small studio in Redmond, Washington, Among Us was download nearly 42 million times on Steam in the first half of September, according to, and it was downloaded nearly 84 million times on iOS and Android that month, according to SensorTower. The game hasn’t left the top five on Apple’s U.S. App Store since Sept. 1, and it has seen more than 158 million installs worldwide across the App Store and Google Play to date, SensorTower says.

It’s easy to play, fun, and inexpensive, and has emerged as one of the best pastimes for virtual socializing amid a pandemic. 

What is Among Us?

Among Us is a modern take on classic social deduction games like Mafia and Werewolf. 

Using a PC or mobile device, users play as crewmates and must accurately identify the impostors among them or complete their tasks to win. The impostors, meanwhile, achieve victory by killing off their crewmates or sabotaging the spaceship. The game randomly chooses the impostors at the start of each game.

Among Us

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