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Among Us creators say Fortnite's "Impostors" mode is wholesale copying
- Members of Innersloth say Fortnite’s “Impostors” mode is almost a direct copy of Among Us.
- This includes not just gameplay but terms, themes, and map design.
- There’s no immediate sign of a lawsuit, and some at Innersloth have offered to collaborate with other studios.
A new, temporary “Impostors” mode in Epic Games’ Fortnite is causing frustration among the developers of Among Us, Innersloth, who argue that it’s an uninventive copy of their own social deduction game.
Like Among Us, Impostors has most of its players completing tasks while a handful of infiltrators — literally called “impostors” in both titles — try to kill or sabotage them. The similarities extend to meetings, voting to sniff out suspects, and even a Quick Chat menu that wasn’t previously in Fortnite. Victoria Tran, Innersloth’s community director, took to Twitter to say she doesn’t mind Epic copying game mechanics, but that the company should’ve at least used “different themes or terminology.”
like game mechanics fine, those shouldn’t be gatekept, but at the very least even different themes or terminology makes things more interesting? 😕— Victoria Tran 🧋 (@TheVTran) August 17, 2021
Programmer Gary Porter accused Epic of copying Among Us’ most famous map, Skeld, simply flipping around a few elements to make it different. Innersloth co-founder Marcus Bromander echoed Tran by suggesting that Epic should’ve “put 10% more effort” into its spin on the gameplay model.
Innersloth hasn’t threatened legal action, but people like Tran and another co-worker, Calum Underwood, have offered to collaborate with studios thinking about adopting similar gameplay.
It’s not clear that a lawsuit would have a chance in court, regardless. Epic has hundreds of millions of dollars to mount a defense, and Among Us is itself modeled after other social deduction games like Mafia/Werewolf, which dates back to 1986.
What do you think of this whole situation? Is it fair to copy a game to this level or was Epic out of line?