Between us, a murder mystery set in space, is the latest multimillion-dollar craze in video games

(CNN)

With people staying indoors all over the world, their last favorite pastime is the 2018 murder mystery game set in space called Between Us.

The game’s immense popularity prompted its developers to announce Thursday that it would cancel a sequel to the game, to focus better on increasing the current version. The game has arrived Over a million players On September 3 and it had grown to over 3.5 million users worldwide by Friday.

“We canceled Part Two because we saw the opportunity to give back to players a little faster than creating a new, better version,” Forrest Willard, a developer at InnerSloth, who makes it between us, told CNN Business. “It’ll be more work in the long term, but we’re excited for players to update the game, and suddenly there’s a new feature or a new map that opens up new experiences.”

“Between Us” is based on other social party games such as “The Mafia” where a group of innocent people live their daily lives while murderers, who conceal their identities, commit murders at night. The group must identify the culprit and get rid of the fraudsters before they lose their majority.

InnerSloth, a company of three people, was released with us in 2018. Willard is a programmer and takes over the business. It didn’t cause much fanfare at the time, though it has grown in popularity in countries like Korea and Brazil. The game didn’t start until this summer in the US, when it began airing on Twitch with a fanbase of 2.8 million viewers.

Between Us It costs $ 5 on the PC game store Steam or the indie game store Itch.io, and it’s free with ads on mobile. Players can make additional purchases to decorate and customize their in-game characters. InnerSloth declined to comment on the sales figures and total revenue.

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The game requires four to 10 players, who are randomly assigned to the roles of either a fellow crewmate or a charlatan. There is always more crew than scammers to start with. Throughout the game, the crew members try to complete their missions and the impostors try to kill the crew and sabotage the spaceship without getting caught.

The game’s popularity prompted its developers to announce Thursday that it would cancel a sequel to the game, to focus better on increasing the current version. (InnerSloth)

Between Us includes a lot of lies, accusations, and angry denials – a perfect recipe for engaging with social media. Played by PewDiePie, YouTube’s biggest single creator, as well as rapper and singer Soulja Boy.

Between Us is not the only indie game to be launched this year. Fall Guys is a light-hearted battle royale where players are Jelly Beans trying to work their way through mazes, jumping, challenges and other activities to become the best of the 60 players. It sold more than 7 million copies on the Steam Store within a month of its August launch.

All the people raise the question, what is next among us? InnerSloth developers know they must build on their success and keep players engaged. Experts say that their decision to trim a second part made sense.

“At this point, Part Two will end up dividing the audience. It is best to keep participation high in the current game and increase revenue generation through in-game purchases,” said Cassia Curran, a consultant at Wings Interactive, a fund that invests in various games.

Innersloth developer Willard said the team plans to add features to between us including the ability to add friends, color blindness mode and a way to customize the controls.

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He said, “These just make the game easier for people to have fun over and over.”

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