Among Us Strategy: The 3 Most Common Player Types and How to Win as the Imposter

Source: Steam

Everyone who’s ever played Among Us has probably caught themselves sometime between their first and fiftieth game saying, “Yeah, but how do I win?” The game, by design, can bring out different, very distinct styles of play. The intense psychological elements of the game have a natural tendency to encourage the same few specific types of player. Each of those styles has strengths, just as each has weaknesses. While you could realistically discuss, critique, and dissect players, sub categorizing them even further into more types, these three styles would remain at the heart of each. The goal of this article is to define, analyze their strengths, and tell you how to exploit their weaknesses. If you want to beat your friends Among Us, first you have to figure out what type of player they are.

The Players

The Newb: A Newb player is just that… New. They don’t know all of the rules or tasks or locations. They were likely talked into playing by their friend(s) and have yet to fathom what they actually signed up for. They’re here for fun. They will not be able to counter sinister, next level strategies, as they have not yet quite figured out the rules or basic mechanics of the game. Often, they are the first to die, as imposters see them as the low hanging fruit necessary to get quick kills and eliminate the crewmates.

The Logician: The Logician applies logic and critical analysis to every aspect of the game. They are the magicians of the stats and numbers realm. Generally, they are expert interrogators, as they have checked vitals, logs, etc… One very clear thing about this game is that time is the imposter’s enemy. The more time they give Logicians, the more data they have to analyze and ultimately determine who the imposter is. Logicians, being the data gurus that they are, often find the killer. They apply log data and other information, like who was doing which tasks where, in a logical way to figure out who the killer is. They know who ran to the opposite side of the map shortly before the body was found, and they will use that information to indirectly, or, if you’re extremely unlucky directly accuse you. Others who play with Logicians quickly recognize their high success rates, and will believe them if the tone of their question even resembles an accusation. Ultimately, this player style is obsessed with data and believes that data is the key.

The Super Sleuth: These are your wannabe Sherlock Holmes types. Like Logicians, they do tend to work largely through logic to attempt to deduce the killer. They may also check logs and are likely to spend more time watching the security cams. The key difference is the data set to which they apply their logic. While Logicians tend to demand empirical data, Super Sleuths are more interested in psychological data. A Super Sleuth is far more likely to read the way a character moves across the screen, pay attention to who votes for who, who has a tremor in their voice when asked direct questions, the different patterns that develop as they play with the same people over time, and the various motives someone might hold to deceive them. An important distinction is that while a Logician is more interested in where the players are going or were, although a Super Sleuth is also interested in this, they focus more on general behavior. For example, a Super Sleuth is likely to say things like “That player was running at me like they were the killer.” While what they do involves logic, a fair amount of it is also gut instinct. Which is a tool Logicians are generally broadly incapable of using. Your Super Sleuth players tend to be a little less tactful and shoot from the hip all too often.

How to Win as the Imposter

What’s the point in knowing the players if you don’t know how to beat them? So let’s discuss strategy. Now that you’re acquainted with the player types, it’s time to talk strengths and weaknesses.

Statistically, Logicians are most likely to win, so we’re going to start there. If someone is critically analyzing all of the other players’ movements, mentally logging who was closest to the body every time one was found, and focusing on who’s doing tasks, they are likely to eventually uncover elements of the imposter’s story that just don’t add up. For these reasons, it is critical to eliminate Logicians early in the game. The more time you give them to pour over logs, the more data they acquire, and the more likely they are to catch on to you.

Unfortunately, killing a Logician elicits unnecessary suspicion. While it is roughly even odds that someone will die, unless you’re playing with seasoned pros, people tend to assume Logicians are inherently better at the game. Maybe they are. As a result, by killing a Logician first, you allow other Logicians and Super Sleuths to almost immediately rule out all of the Newbs, which leaves very few alternatives. However, a Logician’s biggest strength, as it so often goes, is also their biggest weakness.

Logicians do not like to get emotional. They prefer to let the data do the work. This is one reason they are not likely to hard accuse. Instead, they prefer to ask intimidating questions to try to sus out the killer. If you can provide a plausible answer to their question, they may move on to their next target, although in my experience this is rare. More likely, they will watch you closer. They know the data backs this choice up. The best option for defeating a Logician is eliciting an emotional response in order to get the rest of the crew to vote the Logician out. There are several ways you can do this.

What strats work against a Logician? You can Second, which is backing up others’ claims if they accuse a Logician. This move can garner some lowkey suspicion. So it’s important that you do it in the right way. Find a small reason to back that person up and use illogical means to support your claim. For example, “I felt like you were skulking around a lot,” or “It seemed like you were following me.” These are claims that cannot necessarily be disproven, as they are based in emotion. Feelings. Opinions. Logicians, brilliant as they may be, do not often know how to counter such claims. Sometimes the very notion that someone is playing with emotions instead of logic is enough to evoke a visceral response from a Logician, which draws suspicions from the rest of the crew.

A second, bolder option is The Frame Job. Suppose there are three players in a room, a Newb, a Logician, and yourself. The Logician is doing a task, and the Newb is gleefully bouncing around. Kill the Newb and quickly vent out of the room. The Logician will definitely report the body when their task is complete and accuse you, maybe even hard accuse you. The important thing is to keep your cool. When they accuse you, tell the crew that you saw the Logician and the Newb enter the room as you finished a task, but that you left the room to go complete another task. If you’re lucky the Logician will not have been able to see you kill or vent. Meaning, by their own standard of proof, they will not logically be able to refute your claim with total confidence. The rest of the crew will likely feel it suspicious that the Logician was in the room with the body, and there is immediately a good chance the Logician will be voted out.

The third and riskiest option, which also happens to be the biggest exploitation of the Logician’s weakness, is The Brazen Murder. Suppose two Logicians are in a room with you(Let’s call them Logician 1 and 2). Kill Logician 1 and immediately self report it. It is critical that when the meeting starts you very calmly get the first word in. “I saw the Logician 2 murder Logician 1.” By doing these things, you have put yourself in a power position for several reasons. No Logician would ever expect this, and they almost definitely will not be able to report it before you. This means, you will be the one to have reported the body, which is key. It gives a little bit of automatic credibility. This type of illogical move is virtually guaranteed to elicit an emotional response from the Logician, which other players will perceive as panic. It will make them seem guilty. Be sure to offer a life for a life, to put your claim over the top. The Logician will continue insisting it was not them. Just before the airlock sequence, provide yourself a shred of doubt/an alibi for when it is revealed it was not the Logician. Do so by saying something like, “I finished my task and saw the Logician standing over the body.” The Logician will obviously not believe this, but other members of the crew might, and in a matter of seconds the Logician will no longer be able to speak or provide any alternate proof. At the very least it gives you a shot at getting out of your life for a life offer. Although, as you have just killed two players, the numbers may likely be in your favor, especially if both of those players were Logicians. If there are only three players remaining, begin the next round by setting off a reactor sabotage or calling an emergency meeting. If you sabotage, in the scramble, murder one of the players and automatically win. If the numbers are not in your favor, you will have to weasel your way out of a death pact, which although it is not impossible, it can be very difficult.

Now for strategies to defeat the Super Sleuth. The Super Sleuth’s greatest weakness is their own desire to solve the murders. That’s their whole reason for existence and the strategy by which they intend to win the game. They’re not trying to finish all of the tasks(although they do still do tasks generally); they’re trying to solve a murder. They are likely not paying as much attention to empirical evidence but rather focusing on the psychological. For that reason they are the perfect candidates for some classic rouses.

The Third Imposter, or Marinating, is a term you are all likely familiar with. The idea is simple enough. Gain the Super Sleuth’s trust and form an unofficial alliance. As the imposter it is not enough to be good at killing. More often than not, the crew should be killing more than you are. So you also have to be cunning and convincing. You need people in your voting block to avoid being tossed from the space lock. Super Sleuths are often the perfect players to manipulate in this way. They will do the hard accusing for you, as they are determined to find the killer. This is vital, because it throws suspicion from you. It is critical that you spend a decent amount of time with your Super Sleuth, as they will certainly pay attention to that. Be swift in your kills and use sabotages to distract your third imposter. Be sure to also pretend to do tasks. Super Sleuths are less likely to watch the task bar, but if they physically see you performing a task, they will likely believe it. Perhaps most importantly, defend your Super Sleuth and back them up on accusations. Since they are accusing a lot, they will gain suspicion from other crew members. It is critical that you interject with lines like, “Guys, I was with her. It can’t be her!” While it is in your favor to vote with the Sleuth, furthering the likelihood that another crewmate will be ejected, it can be helpful not to do so every time, as that may bring too much attention your way. Read the room and try to determine when your vote will matter. If the third imposter is voted off, be sure to get in jabs like, “see I told you!” This is your best bet at getting the opposing block of voters to turn on each other. Ultimately, even if they are eventually voted out, your third imposter is a crewmate, and this is a statistically advantageous position.

Just like Logicians, Super Sleuths can be incredibly dangerous. Like Logicians, they will find clues and can eventually narrow the list of suspects down to you. It’s just a different type of clues. If you have just a little tinge in your voice as you lie, they are generally the ones who will quickly accuse you. If your voting habits don’t quite add up, they will take notice. While playing to their vanity is your best bet, another valuable technique is to sow self doubt.

Psychology, although a powerful tool, is not an exact science. That’s why the Seed of Doubt is a very strong strategy against Super Sleuths. No matter how confident a Super Sleuth may be, all can be worn down and begin doubting themselves. The best way to do this is to provide bogus contradictory information regarding some of the Sleuth’s claims. It is important to do this in a non threatening way, as contradicting a Super Sleuth too directly will likely land you in their sights. If they say they’re sus of another player because they saw them do something earlier in the match, the accused player may say, “I was on the other side of the map.” This is a perfect time to chime in with, “I was on the security cams, and I can confirm the other player was on the other side of the map.” It may feel contradictory not to throw that other player under the bus in order to get one more crewmate ejected, but remember you’re playing the long game. If you throw them under the bus, you may be the next to be accused. If you provide an alibi, whether the rest of the crew votes this person off or not, you’re in a good place. If they vote them off, you get an I told you so moment, which can make other crew members more suspicious of the Sleuth and less suspicious of you. At that point, you can start framing the Sleuth. If they keep the accused player, you get their trust and with that a third imposter opportunity

What about the Newb? Well… Newbs are either a). Highly predictable, or b). Complete wild cards. They’re easy to kill, less likely to see more in depth strategies and ulterior motives, less likely to know tools like the security cam or logs exist, and more likely to vote with emotion rather than logic or deduction. While it may seem like racking up easy newb kills is the best approach, I would offer a word of warning. Winning as the imposter is largely about manipulating your competition. The Newbs are almost always the easiest to manipulate. Also, the more people off the ship, the less votes it takes to throw someone out. You want to keep people onboard who will likely not vote together. Having Newbs, who may choose to skip or are all to willing to contradict Logicians or Super Sleuths on crucial votes can be critical to keeping the voting blocks split up and extending your time on the ship.

General Tips

Now for a few general tips for playing the game. These are just some fundamental bits of advice that will hopefully help you play better and deceive your friends. Take them or leave them.

As is true of any game and perhaps in a broader sense life as a whole, the best way to win is to be a little unpredictable. Be bold. Sure killing someone in a common place that everyone passes through can be risky, but also players tend to be less likely to notice bodies in places where they don’t normally look for them.

Accuse someone on a hunch and see what happens. Sometimes it plays out that your suspicions will end up falling back on you, but other times it eliminates one more player with zero repercussions. Every time, it will allow for a lot of fun fighting, which is certainly in the spirit of the game.

Look for tells. All players have them. Whether it’s always asking “where” when the body is found, being quiet when you’re the killer, or just literally telling everyone it’s you because you hate being the imposter, everyone has a tell. Tells can give you a huge leg up on the competition. And whatever you do, never let that player know you figured out their tell. Tells are worth milking.

Conclusion

If you’ve read this far, it’s likely you’re wondering which playing style is the best. The truth is there’s not one answer here. If you want to win, you need to assess your strengths and pick the style that best fits you. Being able to bounce back and forth and do a little bit of it all certainly helps. The biggest thing is that you just have fun and don’t take it all too seriously when it’s done. Games that are designed to put you in situations where you are inherently at odds with all of your friends may not be for everyone, but personally, I find it to be a fun, cathartic release. So enjoy the game, remember it’s about strategy but also just having fun, and try to avoid getting spaced. Good luck out there!

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Aaron Locke Londraville

Aaron Locke Londraville is a lover of books, sci-fi, theatre, film, and politics. He’s got everything nerds need to figure out how to vote or what to watch.