The current state of the world has forced us to go about our daily lives in the most unfun way possible. Forget actually going to school, the gym or restaurants. All of these things must be done from the comfort of your own home. But I would argue that the most pressing issue of all is our inability to make friends in the ways we’ve grown accustomed to.
In this sad, seemingly apocalyptic world, social interaction has been reduced to hearing 30 people say “thank you” at the end of a lecture. But of course, the human species, as resilient as it is, has found ways to improvise, adapt and overcome, as Bear Grylls so eloquently put it. Among Us, basically the best thing invented since flushing toilets, is the perfect new way to make friends. The concept of the game is the same as Mafia, except it’s played in a virtual spaceship. Crewmates go around completing tasks while the impostor, whose identity is unknown to everyone else, tries to kill all the crewmates before all tasks are completed.
I’ll start with a personal success story. One night, I was invited to a random Discord server composed of a group of friends of friends. Upon further discussion and introductions, I realized there was a fellow UC Berkeley Bear in our Among Us squad. And furthermore, she was in Hong Kong, where I also live right now. The following weekend, I invited her to meet my other friends at my place to bake a cake together. An unbreakable bond was formed as we transitioned from virtual tasks to real-life tasks. The baking activity quickly escalated into an apartment party and eventually transitioned downtown to hitting the clubs. Note: I am in Hong Kong, so this is all legal and in accordance with health guidelines.
Among Us, in my opinion, is the best virtual activity because first, it forces everyone to be engaged. You can’t be texting friends at the same time, especially if you’re the impostor. This fixes a common pain point of most online activities. During lecture, my friends will play a riveting round of League of Legends. I’m pretty sure people attend two Zoom events at the same time. I actually sat through a club meeting while doing a facial. In addition to this, Among Us forces discussion about a common activity. There is nothing like accusing people back and forth to achieve a common goal.
So the next time you decide to host an online virtual event for a club meeting or bonding activity, consider Among Us. It’s quick, easy and much more engaging than a movie night or icebreaker activities, as those events can easily become awkward. As you can tell from my personal experience, the shared goal of the game brings you closer together with your fellow players in a way that other activities simply do not.