It’s weird to think about, but there was a time less than a year ago then Among us was not a household name. When it was first launched in 2018, it was not a failure, exactly, but it seemed destined to live its days as quietly as a good deceiver – except without the killing. So last summer, it exploded thanks to a small handful of popular Twitch streamers that then spread it to all other popular Twitch streamers. Suddenly all eyes were fixed on Among us‘then three-person development team.
This, the developers told YouTube interviewer Anthony Padilla, was no walk in the park. Even as Innersloth expanded – albeit a little and slowly – team members suffered from burnout, born of the enormous expectations that were suddenly placed on them.
“Among us went viral, it was like, ‘OK, this is my life,’ “Innersloth artist and doing a lot of other things, said Amy Liu.” The pressure to get things done quickly was really high. From September to December we talk to the Xbox , PlayStation.They would try to come Among us on these platforms, which usually take many months – like half a year to a year. We were like: ‘Three months! We’re trying it. ‘”
The expectation of Libra also came down on Liu and the rest of the team at the height of a global pandemic.
“I’m definitely burnt out,” said a tearful Liu. “It was hard, because during all this we could not see friends and family. Since I was so tired of working, I could not even visit my family during covid and had to spend vacation alone … It was definitely the hardest time. ”
Of course, the original members of Innersloth achieved incredible success, so it is not as if they were isolated and penniless. Artist and game designer Marcus Bromander recognized that there is “an element” in making all your dreams come true that accompanies Among us‘rise to gaming royalty, and he said that newfound money and resources certainly helped with “other burdens.” But it also increased the pressure.
“The amount of attention we had on us, and like every little thing we do, is looked at and criticized,” Bromander said. “We changed the font at some point because it needed to be changed and people were like ‘Bring back the old font! I do not like this new font. ‘”
All the while, people were constantly declaring Among usif updates were born from a scrapped attempt at Among us 2a “dead game”. The developers learned to ignore these kinds of comments, but they still had to navigate through them to find constructive feedback. This took a toll.
“There was a time at the beginning of the year,” Bromander said, “when many of the negative comments really started coming to me, and – combined with the overwhelmed emotions – I was like, ‘I do not even want to work on this longer. I’m done.'”
Overall, Innersloth found it difficult to bring the player’s expectations into line with reality. A contributing factor, explained programmer Forest Willard, was the game’s simple art style. Fans saw how basic the game looked and assumed that creating new content would be a cakewalk – even though the reason the developers wanted to make Among us 2 in the first place was because the first game was likely to break when it was updated.
“When you try to gather yourself while you catch up, these things take time,” Willard said. “And when you are under hundreds of millions of [peoples’ worth] of pressure, they do not understand that it takes months. The server issues need to be resolved tomorrow, adding new stuff needs to be next week – it’s that easy [to them]. It’s a lot of pressure. It is overwhelming. ”
Among us remains massively popular, but its time as a Twitch-topping sensation is over. While the developers at Innersloth feel pressure to continue reaching new heights, they no longer have to rush or try to keep the numbers up. They can afford to take their time – a luxury that many less successful game developers do not have.
“You will always go up,” Bromander said. “You can not go up forever. Tops are not a bad thing. There may be pressure [be] like, ‘We have to push everything we can out of this game,’ but I do not think we do. We do what we can with the game. When there are no more ideas, we will not force it. ”