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Among Us is a space-themed free online game where up to 15 players play together and are assigned the roles of ‘Crewmate’ or ‘Imposter’. The aim of the game is for the crewmates to identify the players who are the imposters before the imposters can secretly sabotage their tasks and individually kill the crewmates. When a crewmate is killed and the dead body is reported, there is then a discussion among the remaining crewmates so that they can vote on who they think is the imposter. This game is all about communication and strategy.
Official age rating
This is a PEGI rated 7 game.
It is worth noting that in the Apple App Store, the game is rated as 9+
The PEGI 7 rating reflects that Among Us is a suspense, murder mystery and strategy game with a cartoon visual feel. It is not a game with realistic violence or adult orientated content. The game contains elements that might be frightening for some children and young people. There are no age verification methods used when creating an account, so ensure your child has entered their correct date of birth to benefit from some of the safety settings.
Find out more about age ratings in our A parent and carer’s guide to age ratings of apps and games.
How children and young people use the app
Among Us is a free, easy to learn and social game in which players have to deceive and outwit each other in order to win. The interactivity and set up of the game make it fun for children and young people to play together. Children and young people can host a game and play with their friends, with each of them performing one of their assigned roles. The look of the game can be changed in terms of the characters, the colours, the usernames, pets and hats but the game can also be customised, for example, by choosing the number of imposters, the speed of play and the number of emergency meetings. The game can also be played across a range of platforms including via the app.
The content within the game has a PEGI 7 rating, reflecting that this is a game with suspense, where players must secretly kill other players. However, this is not done in an overly graphic way and the game does not contain explicit sexual or violent content or any other adult themes. The animation sequences for when a player’s character is killed by the imposter is very sudden and could be considered distressing for some children. It is the most graphic and dramatic moment of the game so we would recommend that parents and carers watch these killing animations in advance to determine whether it would upset their child. The in-game chat function is often where players may stumble across inappropriate content in the form of bad language which the chat filtering does not pick up on. By restricting who your child can access on the platform, your child is less likely to experience language or behaviour that is not suitable for their age.
Connecting with others
The most significant risk in Among Us is the fact that it can be played publicly. The hosting feature of the game means that children and young people can decide to play with just their friends by setting the game to private and giving them the code. However, the game can also be played publicly where any user playing the game can join it. The game is safer if you encourage your child to play the game privately with their friends so that they are not interacting with strangers. If your child is playing publicly or privately, you can set chat filters which determine whether they can use quick chat (pre-selected messages) or free text chat. There are some filters within the free text chat in Among Us to filter out personal information, but these should not be relied on. Speak to your child about the risks of chatting with strangers and explain the importance of not sharing any personal or identifiable information with other players within chats. Encourage them to tell you if they have been asked more personal questions or to chat privately using a different app.
It is also worth noting that some gamers use third party chatting apps like Discord to chat whilst gaming. Ask your child if they are using any additional chatting apps whilst playing and check who they are communicating with. It may be helpful to know that although chatting is an appealing part of gaming, it is not essential to play.
Among Us has its own code of conduct, which all players must adhere to in order to play. Players who deviate from the expected behaviour risk being removed from the game. Speak to your child about what is appropriate behaviour when playing a multiplayer game and ensure they know how to report inappropriate or offensive behaviour.
Design, data and costs
As with most free online games, there are opportunities for players to make in-game purchases to personalise their characters. These do not benefit the gameplay, but they can nonetheless be extremely appealing for players. Speak to your child about in-app purchases to affirm their understanding that real money is used to make purchases within the game. You can also set the relevant in-app purchase settings on your device. It is also important to check that the game is not linked to your bank cards or financial details. The game also makes money through advertising. At the end of each game, players are shown an ad before they can start a new game. If you are willing to pay £1.99, you can remove all adverts.
Tips for keeping your child safe
Among Us has a designated ‘Parent’s portal’, which offers some safety settings and features you can change. The safest way to play Among Us is to get your child to play with their known friends, with one of them as a host and all using a code to access the game.
To set up as a ‘Host’:
- Launch the game and select the ‘Online’ option.
- Enter your name and select ‘Host’ where you will then reach a lobby where you can customise your game.
- Select ‘Private’ at the bottom of the screen to generate a code, which you can then share with your friends.
There is a ‘Quick chat’ feature for users that are under 13, which limits the discussion to a number of set options rather than allowing for free text and communication. Check the date of birth in your child’s profile by signing into the ‘Parent portal’ to ensure that they will benefit from this feature. You can also set controls in relation to the chat to restrict bad language.
To set the chat filter:
- Launch the game and select the gear icon at the bottom of the screen.
- In the settings menu, select the ‘Censor chat’ to ‘On’.
You can report and block users who may be bothering you or behaving inappropriately on the platform.
To report a player:
- Open the ‘Kick’ menu (boot icon) in the chat function.
- Select the player to report and choose the ‘Report’ option.
Whilst this game is free to play, in-game purchases are available. You can disable in-app purchases on each individual device itself.
To disable in-app purchases on iPhone:
- Go to the settings menu > ‘Screen time’ and scroll down to ‘Content and privacy restrictions’.
- Select ‘iTunes & App Store purchases’ and set the option to ‘Don’t allow’.
To disable in-app purchases on Android:
- Go to your ‘Google Play Store’ app.
- Select ‘Menu’ > ‘Settings’ > ‘Require authentication for purchases’.
Key features and terminology
Crewmate and Imposter
These are the different roles assigned to players within the game.
The imaginary planet where the game is set.
This is an imaginary research base in the game and a location setting.
This is an imaginary company in the game and a location setting.
This is another location setting in the game.
Crewmates who have been killed who can still play and help their living teammates by completing their tasks.
Where crewmates come together to discuss who is the imposter.
‘Hosts’ can set up a game with their friends and can generate a code that is then shared with other players you know to give them access to the game. If the game is set to private it can only be accessed by the code distributed by the host and it is not open to the public.
The game can also be played publicly by up to 15 people online. These people can be strangers.
Encourage your child to set up their own games as host and only play with people they know. It is recommended you check with them who is in their friends lists.
If they are playing publicly, make sure your child keeps their information private and consider setting controls on the chat function to help keep them safe.