Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’re probably at least passingly familiar with Among Us. The “mafia”-style social game absolutely blew up this year. We’ve been playing it a lot, ourselves, and we even made an exception for it in our site-wide Game of the Year list despite it debuting in 2018.
But Among Us is also a game originally developed by a team of only three people. It’s stood up remarkably well, to be sure. Still, it’s all those developers can do to keep up with the player-base, let alone start adding new features.
That’s where the fans come in.
What is Among Us Proximity Chat?
Among Us “Proximity Chat” lets you use voice chat with other players who you’re in close proximity to within a match of Among Us. Words mean things!
Okay, it’s a little more complicated than that.
When people refer to Among Us Proximity Chat, they mean CrewLink, a free and open-source third-party tool made by Ottomated. It’s not a mod, because it isn’t changing anything about the game itself. Rather, CrewLink is a separate application that pulls some data from your game of Among Us and uses it in conjunction with other people playing the game. It finds out who’s standing near to each other on the game map and, if you’re close enough, lets you speak only to players in your immediate area.
This also means that (unlike in the base game, where people usually wait for tense, timed meetings) you can more effectively “team up” and share information. That alone changes the dynamic of the game, and can be used for cooperation. Or social sabotage. Even if you enjoy the eerie silence of the game as it exists by default, the difference is fun.
How do I install Proximity Chat?
The main catch here to note is that, because CrewLink is a separate application that runs alongside Among Us, you can only use it with the PC version of the game. It’s easy to recommend that version of the game, anyway. Not only is it inexpensive, but most people have a much easier time controlling it than the phone version. (The Switch version also controls pretty well.)
Because CrewLink also needs information from the other players in your lobby, it also means that everyone else needs to be running Crew Link. Luckily, CrewLink comes with an all-in-one installer, so getting it on your PC is super-easy and super-quick!
To make things even clearer, the developer of the project has his own video tutorial on how to install the application:
CrewLink should automatically kick in when you join a game.
Another thing to note is that the public server that CrewLink uses by default can only serve so many players, especially if you’re playing during a popular time (say, Saturday night), you may experience connectivity issues.
The best way to solve for that is to set up a private voice server, but that’s a much more involved process than this article is aiming to cover. If you’re interested in creating a private server, you can follow the creator’s instructions on his project page.
What else can I use Proximity Chat for?
While CrewLink can spice up an existing game of Among Us, I’ve personally found it to be a fantastic addition to the fan-made “game mode” known as Hide-and-Seek.
The core conceit of Hide-and-Seek is that everybody knows who the Impostor player is right off the bat, and must spend the entire match actively avoiding them. Ordinarily, this is a terribly suspenseful twist on the game, turning it into the game version of a horror monster movie.
With Proximity Chat in play, you have to stay perfectly silent like your life depends on it. Because, you know, it actually does in this case. Especially when you can hear the Impostor off in the distance, approaching your hiding place while they audibly threaten you.
Or you can hunt your friends while playing the Jaws theme over their microphone.
It’s almost childishly simple role-playing, sure. But I’ll be darned if it isn’t some of the most fun we’ve had with the game.
“I have a technical problem!”
As with every bit of software, there are going to be some snags that come up. Here are some of the more common issues with some potential solutions:
CrewLink is telling me that my version is wrong!
Crew Link only supports the latest, non-Beta version of Among Us. To use it, ensure that your copy of Among Us is up-to-date. Additionally, if you’re using Steam, right-click Among Us, select “Properties”, then make sure the drop-down for “Beta” is set to “None”.
I can hear other players, but they can’t hear me! (Or vice-versa)
You may have to “refresh” your audio inputs and outputs. Within settings for CrewLink (the “gear” icon), change your input and output to a different device, save your settings, then change them back to their original state and save your settings again. This fixes the majority of one-sided audio problems.
My Voice chat keeps getting really quiet!
Windows has a feature that, by default, will turn certain applications’ volume down when it detects that you’re using voice chat. Unfortunately, Crew Link can get caught up in this despite itself being an voice chat application!
To disable this feature, go to “Sound” under “Control Panel” (or, within Windows Settings, go to “Sound” and select “Sound Control Panel”). There, under the “Communications” tab, select “Do Nothing” to prevent Windows from automatically changing your volume levels.
I have some other problem with the game!
It’s possible that this has been solved already! GitHub allows users to point out issues with a program, so search here for words relating to your problem and the phrase “is:issue”. Because the Among Us Proximity Chat is so popular, there is a good chance someone else has asked the question and found an answer.
Hopefully, CrewLink will help you and your group have a little more fun with the game. Like we mentioned earlier, there are other ways to enjoy Among Us that don’t require mods or separate apps, too. Be sure to check those out while you’re here.