If it walks like Among Us, talks like Among Us, and quacks like Among Us, it was probably at the very least inspired by the runaway success of Innersloth’s murder mystery party game. Epic Games is now finally copping to that in the patch notes for a new update to Fornite’s Impostors mode.
“v18.20 brings improvements to Impostors, the game mode inspired by Among Us from Innersloth!” reads the beginning of the latest set of patch notes. Epic Games doesn’t elaborate beyond that, or mention the game or indie studio behind it anywhere else in post. The Fortnite Impostors game mode itself still doesn’t appear to credit either one, either.
Still, this is progress from back in August, when Epic Games revealed the mode without acknowledging its glaring similarities to Among Us at all. In the 2018 indie game that broke out last year amid the pandemic, you run around a ship completing tasks while a randomly selected opponent is tasked with stealthily killing everyone on board. At regular intervals you meet to vote on who you think the killer is. Fortnite Impostors is, beat for beat, almost the exact same thing.
Understandably, Epic releasing the knock-off mode without an offer to collaborate, or even so much as a thank you, rubbed some at Innersloth the wrong way. “We didn’t patent the Among Us mechanics,” tweeted co-founder Marcus Bromander at the time. “I don’t think that leads to a healthy game industry. Is it really that hard to put 10% more effort into putting your own spin on it though?”
It didn’t help that Fortnite has a history of doing crossovers with other creators, as well as having a track record of being accused of copying other people’s ideas, be they emote dances or entire game modes. Still, others argued that Among Us has a core concept itself based on ideas popularised by the likes of Mafia and Werewolf, even if there’s no denying Among Us’s breakout success in 2020 seemed be the clear impetus behind a new wave of these types of games.
Now, thanks to Epic Games, we know the real answer.