One of the most-fun nights I have had in the pandemic was the night my friends and I got (briefly) into Among Us. Now, I’m really bad at being the killer since I get a little too wrapped up in it and caught up in trying to be sneaky but also still kill people. But I am AMAZING at being the honorary third (or second) killer. I don’t care about winning most multiplayer games, instead deriving satisfaction from playing a game with my friends, so I just stirred as much shit as I could.
I got more innocent people killed than any other player that evening. I had a higher body count than anyone because I just cast doubt, argued, and messed around with people until people doubted what they saw or eye witness testimony. The only reason I wasn’t good at that stuff once I was the killer was because suddenly there were stakes and the continuation of the game was dependent on me not annoying people so much they’d just jetison me so they could enjoy some quiet and coherent arguements. Kinda hard to mess with people if you can’t wildly accuse people of the murders you’re comitting without revealing too many details you shouldn’t know.
One of my friends eventually said that they just always assumed I was one of the killers because even if I wasn’t, me being gone meant the others had a better chance of finding the culprits. It was quite a blast to become the honorary extra killer because I was so good at just causing chaos. It all started to turn around, though, once I accused myself of being the killer because I’d established a pattern of always asking if the killer had maybe self-reported to make themselves seem innocent. My friend had been waiting for the whole evening for it to happen and pounced on it, selling the entire rest of the group on the idea that I had done it and I was too busy laughing so hard I was crying to do anything other than vote for myself to be thrown out the airlock. It was the perfect situation when your only goal was chaos.
After that, everyone kind of clued in that I was just trying to stir the shit and it stopped working as well. People took me less seriously and stopped engaging, which meant I got a lot of tasks done, especially since the killers had made a habit of leaving me alive since I was more useful to them alive than dead. After that, the game started to fall apart a bit as we figured out things that showed if you were the killer or not, like scans and ID swipes and any number of little task items. It’s not as fun when everybody clumps up and starts watching each others’ backs, vouching for each other, and keeping track of which people paired up so if one of them winds up dead, you can assume the other person was the killer.
It is interesting, though, that this showed the flaw in most witness testimony-based trial systems. And jury trial systems, since any decently charismatic person could sway the group, even if they were talking out their ass like I was most of the time. It also revealed who the good liars in the group were, though we managed to avoid any hurt feelings as we accused each other of being liars, cheaters, and unrepentant murders. Or charismatic despots, in my case.
It was just so much fun to cause chaos! And now, with the updates to the game, I look forward to trying to convince my friends to give it another shot so I can stir the pot as much as possible.