real world

Entering Ingress…

I heard about Ingress sometime last year, I’m not sure when but I’m guessing around July or later and I was sufficiently interested & intrigued to request an invite.

And then I heard nothing and forgot all about it.

Until November when my activation code came through and I finally got the app working on my phone, at which point I realised I didn’t actually know much about the game. Frantic googling ensured and I found the slick Niantic Project website where the board of clues had been largely filled up. I flicked to the start of the timeline and read/watched every item pinned to the board in order. by the end I was totally drawn in to what seemed to be an exciting game layered on the world I actually inhabited.

Once I had devoured the marketing, the reality of the game’s beta status hit me when I found nary a portal anywhere near me! I live in suburbs of a small town and not only was the area around me empty, but the town itself was devoid of any Ingress action at all! By Xmas I was deep in Minecraft Pocket Edition and Ingress slipped from my mind.

Until last week when I found myself working in London in glorious weather (inclement weather is a bit of a ball ache for playing this game – waterproof phones and contact gloves are a must in wet, old Britain) and I set to trying to get my head around how exactly to play. Its not that it’s difficult, more that without actually doing it it can seem confusing. Well it did to me but once I found some portals near the hotel and began hacking them like a man possessed to get at their goodies hidden within 😀

This was my first portal hack, a statue in Russell Square Park. It gave up a resonator (needed for opening portals), some XM bursters (weapons to destroy resonators and allow portals to be taken from the enemy), and a media file which turned out to be a rather entertaining weekly need update produced to Google’s usual high standards.

Ingress - First Portal Hack (London, 23 April 2013)

Ingress – First Portal Hack (London, 23 April 2013)

I spent the next few days as I travelled between meetings hacking every portal I came across, friend or foe. I didn’t bother attacking much as every bugger in London seems to be a Level 8 and I hadn’t really got passed the start of 1.

Anyhoo, I can report I really enjoyed the spy-lite-like fun of Ingress and I’ll be playing it more over the summer, assuming/hoping we have more than two weeks of sunshine this year of course!

Have you tried it? If so what did you think? If not, let me know why as I’d be interested to know what you guys think of it.

By the by, I’m on the side of the Enlightened… 😉