One significant shortcoming in Among Us is how the game frequently fails to account for players coordinating.
Although the Among Us community has mostly adapted around this problem, identifying it can go a long way towards developing new features that can solve this issue. Teamwork and coordination can offer Among Us entirely new avenues of play, but at the moment only seem to make games less fun.
How does teamwork and coordination affect Among Us?
One thing to keep in mind when putting this particular problem into perspective is that this issue isn’t something that “ruins” Among Us. Among Us is still perfectly playable and fun, but it is worth pointing out.
Crewmates in Among Us are encouraged to coordinate to a certain degree, but fully coordinating has the unintended consequence of making games very boring. A fully coordinating team of crewmates can effectively form a mass of crew, moving from place to place and never giving imposters a chance to strike.
Theoretically, if crewmates work together and share information as clearly and accurately as possible, they can always identify imposters, or at the very least, always complete tasks, thereby making every game of Among Us a foregone conclusion.
How could Among Us support teamwork more?
The biggest reason that high degrees of coordination result in dull games is that getting identified as the imposter is effectively game over. Therefore, imposters are encouraged to lie in wait and strike when an opportunity arises, while crewmates are encouraged to ensure that an opportunity never arises.
When compared to another free social deduction game, Unfortunate Spacemen, it’s striking how differently teamwork plays out in game. In Unfortunate Spacemen, the monster can change forms to appear like one of the other players. As a result, even if players can identify the monster, the monster can simply return later in a different form.
Additionally, being “identified” as a specific player at one point can result in the spacemen killing one of their own later.
Among Us probably wouldn’t work quite as well if imposters could disguise themselves, but they could do with more ways to obscure their identity. In Unfortunate Spacemen, monsters can inflict color blindness on the crew to prevent them from telling each other apart, and something like that in Among Us would give imposters a way to crack tightly packed groups.
Among Us definitely does more right than wrong, but it’s still important to identify where the game could improve. Currently, the fix to coordination has been for crewmates to outright resist coordinating, but that cuts off an entire avenue of play. If Among Us were to give imposters more tools, coordination might be more fun, but as it stands, high coordination can bring games to an unwanted standstill.