BY GARY LEE STAFF WRITER
Emergency meeting! Imposters have been spotted on the flying vessel: the Airship!
The popular multiplayer game Among Us has recently released its highly anticipated map, The Airship, on Mar. 31. Since the initial preview of the map in December, Among Us fans have been greatly rewarded with several new features and content in the update.
In efforts to preserve the current fanbase, the Innersloth developers decided that, instead of moving on, they would put more effort into both maintaining and upgrading the game. But, the release has been met with a mix of reactions. For some, the map's functionality in size and gameplay makes for a tedious gaming experience. For others, the surplus of content, created by the small developer team, was astoundingly commendable.
However, despite a subpar update, it is undeniable that the game is going in the right direction as its new content consisting of (but not limited to) tasks and costumes has improved the core mechanics of the game.
Starting off, what is arguably the largest difference between the old and new maps is the size. With roughly 20 new areas to explore and 23 new tasks to die on, the map’s close corridors and one-way pathing make it a new challenge for players to navigate. The map is so big that the game allows the players to spawn in three different locations. Previously, after each round has ended, players would be sent back to the same location as a spawn point. Now, the designated locations allow players to make some strategic decisions, offering a fresh experience for long-time players that grew tired of playing the same maps over and over again.
However, according to some fans, not all of the feedback is entirely positive. Specifically, the sheer size of the map was an issue. Many complaints stemmed from the fact that the large map increased the overall difficulty for the crewmates to win as there was a lot of ground to cover before fans could "report" a body. Maintaining awareness is even more of a challenge as tasks are longer, while player encounters are so spread out, it makes for a not-so-immersing game experience.
At its core, Among Us is a game about multitasking and doing tasks while gathering information may not be as easy with the map being so big. Since the game is limited to a maximum of 10 players, the map faces some of the problems that occurred to Polus—the second largest map in the game—which is a lack of player interaction. Because of the map size, many new players could get easily distracted, making the round stale and boring as the fun twists and “big brain” plays are limited. Of course, this feeling of disappointment could also be because of the novelty of the update, and in that sense, it takes time to fade as more and more people get used to playing on the map itself.
While there are flaws to the update, the map showcases the extensive possibility of future content. With that being said, there are still improvements that could be made in the game. Things like making the game free outside of mobile, re-adjusting the player capacity system and even just adding more content to previous maps.
Ultimately, the new map illustrated the direction that Among Us are heading towards, which is in the good hands of Innersloth. Through their transparency in the development process, it is a fact that the developers truly care for this game and its fanbase. The potential for Among Us is limitless, as it is simply just a great online game for players to come up with strategies, leading to the surprising twists that make Among Us fun in the first place.
Whether or not the game’s mainstream popularity will remain after quarantine is still in debate. However, one thing is for certain is that no one from now on, not in five or even ten years, will be able to forget the masterpiece Among Us, a game that brought people together in this time of isolation and despair.