among us getting started guide

Among Us Getting Started Guide

Considering I only play this on the mobile, I’ve put an inordinate amount of time into Among Us. I haven’t counted exactly, but I’ve played well over 1,000 matches, meaning I must have put at least 100 hours into this.

Honestly, I expect the real amount is even higher, but perhaps it’s better for my sanity that I don’t know the exact total! Still, the fact that I’ve put more hours into a mobile game than I have for most console games should tell you what an amazing experience this is. In this guide, I’ll tell you everything you need to know about Among Us and how to get started playing it!

Bottom Line Up Front

  • Number of colors – 18
  • Number of special roles – 4
  • DeveloperInnersloth
  • Average monthly players – 500 million
  • Average time per match – 5-15 minutes

What is Among Us?

So… You’ve undoubtedly heard of Among Us before, but what exactly is it? It’s a cooperative ‘social deduction’ game, which is a fancy way of saying it’s about detective work. If any of you have played the party game ‘Mafia’, it’s essentially like that but in video game form.

Essentially, there’s a healthy amount of deception, strategic thinking, and interacting with others. It can be as easy or as complicated as you like it. Some people prefer to take charge and go into full-on detective mode, whereas others prefer to just get on with their tasks and leave most of the talking to others. Find the gameplay style that works best for you!

Objective of the Game

So, beyond the obvious objective of ‘win’, there’s a different aim depending on whether you’re a crewmate or impostor. The win conditions vary depending on the roles, and so I’ll talk about the differences between the two.

Crewmates

Most of the players in the lobby will be crewmates. Some players don’t like being a crewmate, but honestly, I think it can be just as fun as being an impostor, if not more so. There are two ways you can win as a crewmate. The first is to complete all of your tasks.

The amount of tasks will vary depending on the game settings, and so this method can either be really easy (if there are only a couple of tasks) or really difficult (if there are lots of tasks). One issue with trying to win this way is that it requires absolutely every crewmate to finish all of their tasks.

That means that if there’s someone who’s AFK (inactive), then you can’t win this way. Also, sometimes players who die will give up but not leave the game, meaning there could be ghosts who haven’t completed their tasks.

Related read: Comprehensive Among Us Ghost Guide.

The other way to win as a crewmate is to vote out all of the impostors. This could be between 1 and 3 players depending on the game’s settings. You’ll need to pay close attention to everyone to figure out who the impostors are. However, you’ll automatically lose if the number of impostors matches the number of crewmates, so you need to be careful not to vote out innocent players.

Impostors

Impostor is harder to play as, but for many players, it’s considered to be a lot more fun. It’s certainly a thrill, and I always get a rush of adrenaline when I’m picked as an impostor. It’s one of those things that I know I’m good at, but it’s still scary when it’s in the moment. For some people, though, being an impostor is the only reason they even play the game.

As an impostor, your job is to work against the crewmates by sabotaging their efforts and killing them off little by little. As with crewmates, there are two ways to win as an impostor. The first is to sabotage one of the vital stations of the ship.

Sabotages like lights and communications make it harder for crewmates to complete tasks, but aren’t fatal if they go unfixed. Meanwhile, urgent sabotage such as reactor or oxygen needs to be fixed in a certain amount of time or it’s game over and the impostors win.

The other method is by whittling down the others until there are an equal number of crewmates and impostors. The best way to do this is with carefully orchestrated killing. You don’t want to get caught, but every dead body you leave is one less crewmate in the game. However, it is technically possible to win without ever killing.

Firstly, if there’s more than one impostor, you can leave the killing to the teammate, and focus purely on seeming innocent. Also, you can let the others keep voting out innocent players by trying to make others seems sus and keep doing that until not enough crewmates are left.

Actions

Aside from simply going about your tasks, there are several actions that you can take in the game. Mostly these are for the impostor, but there are a few additional actions that crewmates can take as well. Here are all the ones you’ll need to know about.

Reporting/ Emergency Meetings

Among-Us-Reporting

If you find a dead body, the best thing to do is to report it. You do run the risk of being accused of self-reporting (when an impostor kills and immediately reports it so nobody can see them escaping), but it’s much worse if you find a dead body, don’t report it, then someone else sees you running away.

There will be a report button on your screen that lights up when you’re in the vicinity of a dead body. That means that sometimes you won’t even see the body as it could be on the other side of the wall. When you click the report button, it will call a meeting.

If you haven’t found a dead body, but there’s something you want to discuss with the group (perhaps you’ve seen someone vent or fake a task) then you can call an emergency meeting. There will be a different location on each map that contains the emergency meeting button. Just as with reporting, a meeting will start when you press it.

During a meeting, you can discuss anything you saw and anyone that you’re suspicious of. You can choose who to vote out, or you can skip if you’re not confident of who the impostor is. In many cases, skipping is the best option. Both crewmates and impostors can call meetings either by pressing the button or reporting a body.

Killing

If you’re the impostor, you’re most likely going to need to kill. When you start each round, there will be a timer over your kill button, this is your kill cooldown (which varies based on the game settings).

When it reaches 0, your kill button will become available, and it will light up whenever you’re in a killing distance of another player. Simply click the button, and the crewmate will fall down dead. However, you should be tactical about how often you kill, as you don’t want to get caught.

For example, if another player saw you enter a room with someone, don’t kill that person in the same room, or the other player will know it was you. Every time you kill, your kill cooldown will be reset, so you won’t be able to kill two players in quick succession. However, if you’re with another impostor and two crewmates in the same room, you can do what’s called a double kill, where each of you kills a crewmate at the same time.

This can be an effective way of getting kills, however, bear in mind that the other impostor may be on a kill cooldown, so you may end up exposing yourself. Also, if there’s not a quick escape route and another player sees you, they could catch both impostors in one go.

Venting

This is an action exclusive to impostors and the engineer crewmate role (which I’ll discuss in more detail later on in the guide). Vents are placed frequently around the map, and allow you to move between areas in a split second. The number and placements of vents varies depending on which map you’re playing on, with some having more than others.

Not all vents lead to all other vents, and most maps have a closed system of 2 or 3 vents at a time. However, Mira HQ has all the vents linked, although you need to move between them one at a time, and you can’t connect to them all at once. You can vent by standing over one of the vents on the map and clicking the vent button that will appear on your screen.

Other players can see an animation if you vent, so if you’re an impostor then you need to make sure that nobody else is around when you do this. Your kill cooldown will freeze whilst you’re in a vent, and won’t continue counting down until you’re back on the map.

Check out our comprehensive Among Us venting guide.

Sabotaging

This is a key tool for the impostor, as it inhibits progress for the crewmates and can be fatal if used correctly. Impostors will see a sabotage button at the bottom right of their screen, and when they click it, it will bring up a map with different areas highlighted. You can click an area to sabotage it.

This will either cause doors to close (trapping anyone inside the room, and potentially allowing you to kill without being seen as long as you can vent away) or can affect something more serious. Some of the sabotages are a nuisance, and some are fatal.

  • Communications: This means that players will no longer be able to use the cameras, and can’t see the list of their tasks or the task progress bar.
  • Lights: This restricts the field of vision for the crewmates (impostors will still see perfectly fine). Depending on how high the vision settings are, crewmates may still be able to see pretty well, so you should pay attention to the settings before the game launches as in some cases sabotaging the lights is pointless.
  • Oxygen: This is fatal sabotage if the crewmates cannot fix it in time. There are two locations where crewmates will need to input a code to stop it from killing them.
  • Reactor: Another fatal sabotage, two crewmates will need to press a button at the same time to stop the reactor from melting down.
  • Seismic Stabilizers: Exclusive to the Polus map, this serves the same purpose as reactor, except that crewmates have a full minute to stop it rather than just 30 seconds.
  • Crash Course: Exclusive to The Airship, this sabotage initiates a helicopter crash, and crewmates will need to divert course in time to stop it. They will find a code in one location and need to enter it in another. It requires two crewmates to enter the same code in two different pin pads.

Customization

Among-Us-Customization

When you’re playing Among Us, you’ll all need a way to identify each other on the map, and that’s where customization comes in! Lobbies can be as large as 15, and it would get confusing if everyone were the same color, so the game only allows one of each color. There are 18 colors to choose from in total, which offers plenty of variety.

You can also add additional customization by changing the appearance of your character. The game offers hats, skins, visor cosmetics, and pets. There’s a wide range of these; some are free, whereas others are available as a paid purchase. You can mix and match the cosmetics to find the look that best suits your personality.

Tips for Playing as a Crewmate

Statistically, you’re probably going to be a crewmate for most of your games. So, how can you make the most of this? Luckily for you, I’m excellent at figuring out the impostor, and I’m willing to share my best tips with you!

Check how many tasks there are

If there are 4 or fewer tasks, find the quickest route and get them all done as soon as possible, but otherwise don’t bother doing them. Trust me, if there are more than 4 tasks each, then you will almost certainly not get them completed before the impostors kill everyone.

Some players are unbelievably slow, and often ghosts will leave tasks uncompleted. Therefore, there’s no logical reason to do your tasks when there are loads of them, and instead, you should use this time to watch the others and figure out who the impostor is. Just make sure to at least do a few so you don’t look sus.

Check if visual tasks are on

Before the round starts, look at the game settings in the lobby to see if the visuals are on or off. If they’re on, check to see if anyone fakes one (I’ll explain how to check this later in the Among Us Getting Started guide).

If they’re off, pay attention in meetings to see if anyone claims to have seen someone else do one. If they say they saw someone, then at least one of them must be the impostor.

Watch out for downloads

Each player can only get one Upload Data task. The location of the download doesn’t matter, but it will only be in one place. Therefore, if you see them ‘doing a task’ at more than one download station, they’re faking.

Time certain tasks

Most tasks will take a different amount of time for each person as it’ll depend on how slow or quick there are. However, there are a few firm rules. Download and upload each takes exactly 8 seconds.

If someone is there for less than 8 seconds or more than 10 seconds (you can allow a couple of seconds for them to start the task) then they’re almost certainly faking. Similarly, the Simon Says task in Reactor takes a minimum of 15 seconds, so if someone does it quicker, they’re faking.

Never be alone

This is an important one. Try to stick in groups where possible, particularly when in secluded rooms. That way, the impostor can’t get you on your own and kill you. If you have to do a task and there’s nobody else around, wait until the start of the next round. The impostor’s kill cooldown is reset after each meeting, so you’ll have an amnesty period where you can’t be killed.

Tips for Playing as an Impostor

Although I genuinely prefer playing as a crewmate, I am still very good at playing as an impostor. The trick is in knowing that it’s not a challenge of how well you can kill, it’s a challenge of how well you can deceive the other players. Here are my best tips to win as an impostor.

how to play imposter

Gain the crewmates’ trust

You need to try and make yourself as trustworthy as possible, as soon as possible. I never kill in the first round (unless I’m in a 1 impostor lobby) as I can instead use that first round to show others how innocent I am while the other impostor does the killing.

I deliberately put myself in a situation where I’m alone with another player, and I don’t kill them. Then in meetings, I vouch for that person by saying “X is safe, they could have killed me but didn’t”, and 9 times out of 10, that person will also vouch for me. Try and leave that player alive as long as possible so they can keep vouching for you if suspicion falls on you later on.

Don’t rat out the other impostor

This is a sure-fire way to ruin the game for everyone and get yourself kicked out of the lobby. This is a team game, and you’re supposed to work together, not against each other. The only exception to this is if you and a crewmate walk in on the other impostor killing.

In this situation, you’d be revealing your guilt if you didn’t turn in the other impostor as they’ll have already been caught. Also, it’s best not to defend them in meetings as if they’re found to be the impostor, you’ll immediately look sus. Don’t walk around together either.

Don’t vent unless you have to

Pretty self-explanatory, but try to avoid venting. There’s a short animation when you’re entering and exiting a vent, and a crewmate could easily walk in and see you. Plus you might show up on cams in two different places in quick succession. You should only really use vents as a quick getaway after you’ve made a kill, rather than as a fast travel system.

Be aware of cameras

Each map has cameras in different locations, except for Mira HQ which doesn’t have any. Get to know exactly where each camera is so you can avoid being spotted doing anything nefarious.

Don’t kill in rooms with cameras next to them unless you’re sure nobody is watching, as you don’t want to get caught walking out. And make sure you don’t vent on camera either.

Use critical sabotages to your benefit

These are the sabotages that is fatal if the crewmates don’t fix them. They’re a great way to distract the crewmates and move everyone away if you’ve just killed and don’t want them to find the body yet.

They’re also great when there aren’t many players left, as there’s a good chance they won’t get fixed. Where possible, I always try to sabotage oxygen when I’m trying for an endgame win, as it requires players to be in two different places.

Number of Impostors

number of impostors among us

The number of impostors can range from anywhere between one and three, and the tactics necessary vary for each. You can check the number of impostors in the lobby settings, or when looking for a game.

1 Impostor

This is the best way to get started with Among Us as it introduces you to the concept of the game. You can get used to completing the tasks with the threat of death looming over you, and if you’re an impostor you can start to learn which killing styles work best for you.

The strategies are a lot simpler as you’re only trying to catch one person, and honestly, it’s very fun, especially if you’re looking for more casual gameplay. However, it’s very difficult for the impostor if you play with 8 or more people.

2 Impostors

This is the best number, in my personal opinion (and probably in the opinion of most players). As long as the lobby size is between 9 and 12, you’re going to have a very well-balanced game. If you play with 8 or less then it’ll be too easy for impostors, and if you play with 13 or more, it’ll be too easy for the crewmates.

The impostors have someone else who they can rely on for sabotages and kills, plus if one of them gets caught, they still have a chance of winning if the other can avoid detection. For crewmates, there’s more pressure than in a one impostor game, and they have to pay closer attention to the dynamics between other players. All in all, it’s a fun yet challenging setup.

3 Impostors

I’ve played maybe 5 games of this ever, and honestly, I hated it. The tactics are just so vastly different to the other two modes, and I genuinely feel that there’s far more of an element of luck as opposed to just logic and skill. You have to catch three different players, meanwhile, they can kill at a much-enhanced rate.

They could perform a triple kill, and even if others saw them, there’d be enough of them in a meeting that they could just lie and kill again before you had time to vote them all out.

This game mode probably works best for people who are playing over voice chat rather than in random lobbies, as at least with voice chat there’s more of an element of deduction as you can listen for clues in their tone.

Ghosts

In most games, when you die, you’re dead. That’s it, game over. But not in Among Us. Instead, when you die, you can haunt the map as a ghost. The play options are more limited, but they’re still there. You move around the map a lot quicker, and can even move through walls, which is pretty fun.

There’s also a ghost chat, so you can socialize with the other players, regardless of their allegiance. If you’re a crewmate you can finish off your tasks, which is very important to do as the living crewmates may be going for task completion over catching the impostor.

You can also try and figure out the other impostor (if there is one) by following the players you’re most sus of. Unfortunately, you can’t communicate with living crewmates, though. If you’re an impostor, then although you can’t kill as a ghost, you can still sabotage.

You can sabotage doors to trap two players together, which often makes them panic and accuse each other in meetings, as they’ll think the other player was the one who locked the door.

You can also perform other sabotages, but often the living impostor will have a plan for when they want to do that and which particular area to sabotage, so it’s best to stick to doors like a ghost.

Maps

There are currently (as of February 2022) a total of four maps in Among Us, with the most recent one, The Airship, being added in March 2021. Each one has a different layout and different tasks, and most players will have a preference for one or the other. As a new player, you should play a few rounds on each to figure out which map is best suited to your playstyle.

The Skeld

This is hands down my favorite map of the game. It’s super basic, but I make no apologies for my preference. The map is simple and so it’s easy to memorize where tasks are, and which rooms are close to where.

It’s also small which means the impostors can’t get very many kills before bodies are found, and so meetings happen more frequently and there’s more strategy involved. There’s the admin table where you can keep track of movements and see if anyone has vented/ killed, which means you can run to those places and see who’s around.

You also have cameras to keep an eye on everyone’s location and see if you can catch some suspicious behavior. The sabotages for The Skeld are communications, lights, oxygen, and reactor.

Mira HQ

This is the only map in the game that doesn’t have cameras, which means the impostor can be a bit more brazen about their kills. However, there’s a door log so if a player passes by a sensor in two rooms that are far apart, it’s possible to figure out that they’ve been venting.

The map is pretty small but has a more unusual layout than The Skeld, and is a bit harder to memorize. The sabotages for Mira HQ are communications, lights, oxygen, and a reactor.

Polus

Among-Us-Polus

Until The Airship was released, Polus was the largest map in Among Us. Taking place outdoors, the layout is very spaced out, which means that it can take more time for bodies to be discovered.

Polus tends to be preferred by more experienced players, as usually new/ casual players avoid this map, and therefore the meetings are more organized. There are cameras on this map, but whilst on The Skeld you see all four at once, on this map you have to switch between the different areas and can only view one at a time.

That means even if someone is on cameras, they may not witness a kill if they’re looking at a different screen. The sabotages for Polus are communications, lights, and seismic stabilizers.

The Airship

Among-Us-The-Airship

This map is gigantic and introduced a whole host of new features. There are ladders, moving platforms, and you can choose your starting location (whereas on the other maps you all spawn in the same place). Honestly, I feel that The Airship is a little bit too large, and it’s far too easy for the impostors if you’re playing with less than 15 people.

I feel that this map is best suited to one impostor game. There are a whopping seventeen locations on this map and several tasks that are not found on other maps. The layout also makes it incredibly time-consuming to get between areas, and so you’re likely to struggle to stop sabotages in time, or to complete your tasks quickly.

Memorizing this map is an incredibly difficult task. However, it is also a lot of fun, as long as you don’t mind losing quite a lot of the time (crewmates rarely win in games with multiple impostors). The sabotages for The Airship are communications, lights, and crash course.

Tasks

Tasks are essentially the backdrop for everything that happens in Among Us. They’re one of the ways a crewmate win, and they’re one of the ways an impostor can get caught.

They’re essentially tiny minigames, although that may be making them sound more exciting than they are, as most of them are incredibly simplistic and involve just pressing a button.

However, some players love just running around completing tasks, and honestly, it can be very relaxing. You can trial tasks in Freeplay mode to get a feel for how to do them.

Common

among-Us-Tasks-fix-wiring

Common tasks are ones which either everybody has, or nobody does. Five total tasks fall under this category, and which ones are available depends on the map. The five tasks are fix wiring, swipe card, scan boarding pass, enter ID code, and insert keys.

If you’re an impostor, it’s imperative to check which (if any) common tasks are in your fake tasks list. If you’re a crewmate, keep an eye out for anyone doing a common task that isn’t on your task list, as that will mean they’re the impostor.

Short

Several tasks fall under this category, so I won’t list all of them. However, these are essential tasks that don’t take much time to complete. These are the quick and easy ones, and I find it’s convenient to get them out of the way first when the round starts. Not everybody will have the same small tasks, and they’re pretty much impossible to time, so you don’t need to watch people do these.

Long

As you can guess from the name, long tasks take, well, longer. They’re the ones that have you going between multiple places, and there will nearly always be several parts to the task. An exception to this is the Start Reactor task in The Skeld, which has only one part but takes upwards of 15 seconds, and many players struggle to complete the first time.

It’s not unusual for players with poor memory skills to require several attempts, and it could take some people well over a minute to finish. Upload Data is usually a long task, but can sometimes be a short task depending on the distance between the download location and the upload location.

Visuals

Assuming that visuals are on in the settings, these are tasks that you can physically see people complete. An impostor can’t fake these, so they’re an excellent way of proving your innocence. If you have a visual task, don’t do it straight away.

Instead, save it and do it when someone is watching you, ideally, more than one person in case one of them dies before the next meeting/ is an impostor. If you’re an impostor, do not attempt to fake these as you can get caught out. An example of a visual task is Clear Asteroids on The Skeld, where players will be able to see red lasers firing out of the front of the ship.

Special Roles

In November 2021, Among Us added special roles into the game that can be played alongside the regular crewmates and impostors. Each one has different abilities, which I will briefly outline.

  • Scientist: These players can view the vitals screen from anywhere on the map, allowing them to know immediately if someone has died.
  • Engineer: This role allows a crewmate to move through the vents, just like an impostor could. It’s useful for travel, but also for catching an impostor in the act. However, you will have limited time inside the vent before there’s a cooldown, so pick your moments.
  • Guardian Angel: This is an ability for ghost crewmates, and allows them to protect a living player from being killed by casting a shield around them. The shield only lasts for a limited time, though, so they should think carefully about when to use it. This is a much more effective ability when you know who the impostors are, as you can follow them and protect the crewmate they’re about to kill.
  • Shapeshifter: This is an impostor ability that allows them to briefly appear as another player. That way, they can kill/ vent whilst looking like someone else, thus potentially getting that other player kicked out.

Settings

The host of a lobby can adjust the game settings to suit their personal preferences. Usually, this is negotiated with other players in the lobby to a certain extent, but you should pay attention to the settings when you join, as they’re unlikely to change, and you won’t enjoy every lobby you find. Here are the main ones to look out for.

Among Us Settings

  • Confirm ejects: This is what tells you if a player was an impostor or crewmate when they’re voted out. If this setting is turned off, you won’t be able to know whether they were innocent. Having it off makes it a lot harder to corroborate stories.
  • Visuals: This is simply whether visual tasks (mentioned earlier) are on or off. When they’re off, you won’t be able to see people completing them.
  • Voting/ Discussion time: This is the most important metric, in my opinion, as it determined how much time you’ll have to choose a player to vote off during a meeting. Unless you only like playing the game for the tasks, you don’t want this to be too short for either voting or discussion, as you’ll need to strategize and share information during meetings. I’d recommend a minimum of 30 seconds for each of them.
  • Task progress bar: This will determine whether or not the task progress will be shown. If it’s on, then any time someone completes a task, you’ll be able to see it progress. There’s a meeting setting where you can’t see progress during gameplay, but it updates at every meeting so you can see how close the crewmates are to total completion. If it’s off, you’ll have no idea how many tasks have been done.
  • Number of tasks: This tells you how many of each task type there is, out of common, short, and long. If there are too many tasks, the crewmates are unlikely to complete them.
  • Special roles: This tells you whether the special roles (mentioned above) are turned on. Pay attention to this, in case an impostor is seen venting and claims to be an engineer when in fact there is no engineering role in that lobby, for example.
  • Kill cooldown: This tells you how long an impostor has to wait between kills. If it’s too long, it becomes boring and too difficult for the impostor. If it’s too short then it’s too easy for the impostor. 15-25 seconds is usually the sweet spot.

FAQs

Question: What is Hide and Seek in Among Us?

Answer: Hide and Seek is a custom game mode that some people like to play instead of the standard format. It doesn’t require any modifications and instead is reliant on game settings, and players following the rules. The impostors reveal themselves at the start of the game by venting, and they have a limited field of vision. The crewmates have to run around completing their tasks and avoiding the impostors.

The impostors are not allowed to sabotage, and nobody is allowed to report dead bodies. Hide and Seek lobbies will usually be hosted by someone who has named themselves ‘HideNSeek’.

Question: Is Among Us still popular?

Answer: Despite some of the initial hype dies down, Among Us is still highly successful (as of February 2022). It’s still regularly pulling in nearly 500 million monthly players, and it shows no sign of crashing any time soon.

Question: Which platforms are Among Us on?

Answer: Among Us is currently available for PC, mobile devices, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.

Is Among Us Cross-Platform?

Conclusion

All in all, Among Us is a fantastic game that can lead to a very rewarding experience. As the rounds are so short, you can get a lot of enjoyment in just a small amount of time.

Your skills will improve the more you play it, and hopefully, this article has given you a strong foothold for getting started. Take heed of the tips I mentioned, and have fun!

Latest posts by Melika Jeddi (see all)
Scroll to Top