How Among Us Became a Hit Years After Release Thanks to UGC
While Among Us is now a hit game, hitting the tops of the biggest gaming-related platforms like Twitch and Steam, it wasn’t always the case. In fact, despite blowing up in 2020, Among Us actually released in 2018 and saw very limited success and popularity in its first two years.
The social deception party game definitely started slow and it wasn’t until around July 2020 that it really entered the mainstream. While there are a variety of reasons for this, including things like the game being simple and cheap, one of the biggest reasons was no doubt the exposure it gained through Twitch and user generated content.
It wasn’t until fans saw their favorite streamers playing the game, fan art, memes, and other user generated content that Among Us gained popularity. So, let’s take a look at just how all this user content managed to drive a ‘dead’ game into one of the biggest gaming successes of 2020.
User Generated Content And Among Us
Among Us is a game that lends itself very well to user generated content, especially in the form of live streaming and video content. This is because the game is cheap, easy to get into and play, and was made with social features in mind.
Overall, it’s very simple for people who have never played Among Us before to get the game, quickly download it, and jump into a lobby with their friends. Because of this low barrier to entry, the game was able to effectively snowball into popularity.
Before the game became popular, video content made up the vast majority of UGC, however, now the official Among Us pages are filled with user content and developer’s Innersloth have done a great job of further promoting and encouraging other content like fanart and memes.
Next, we’ll take a look at how all this came together to form an internet trend powered by user generated content.
How UGC Ignited The Among Us Trend
Among Us mainly gained popularity thanks to user content on Twitch. The game was almost invisible on the platform up until mid-2020 and began to gain popularity around May to June time, when a few of the larger streamers on the platform began to try it out. This is where it all began.
Content creators began to notice that the game was simple, fun, and most importantly, easy to get into. This allowed streamers to easily create content around the game and play it on stream, as well as boost the popularity of the game by inviting other streamers to play, who could do so quickly and easily.
Even stars like Jimmy Fallon joined the Among Us hype train
This idea quickly spiraled and the game became the most viewed game on Twitch in the second half of 2020. Interestingly enough, it was due to organic growth, which was not stimulated by the developers - most creators simply found out about the game from either user generated content or their friends inviting them to play.
Eventually, this led to some of the biggest streamers on Twitch creating content around Among Us and now just about every gamer has heard of the game.
The most interesting thing about the rise of Among Us is that it was perpetrated solely through organic ugc - there weren’t any sponsored broadcasts at the time, no special events, no game-changing updates. It all quite simply came down to it being a simple, fun game that a few big streamers liked and then displayed the massive power of UGC on Twitch.
Despite falling numbers, Among Us remains incredibly popular in 2021 (via Lurkit)
Among Us essentially turned from a completely unknown game to the biggest hit of 2020 just based on user content and the way the popularity snowballed into a massive global trend is likely something we’ll never really see again. However, it definitely shows the power that user content like Twitch streams can have.