A Beginner’s Guide to Ingress
Lately, Ingress has been taking over the internet and the world, in fact it’s been trending everyday on Google+ for the past month. It’s even bypassed the Nexus 4 launch this month. So what is Ingress you might ask? It’s Google’s new augmented reality game that is taking the world by storm. It is basically a genius way for Google to collect data for Maps and Street View, and it’s a way that we certainly won’t mind. It is currently a closed-beta game, and in order to play you need an invite code. But what do you do when you get your code? Well that’s what we are going to talk about today in our Beginner’s Guide to Ingress. Since the game can be a bit complicated if you haven’t heard of it before.
So you’ve gotten your invite code. And you’ve entered it in. You are now ready to pick your name. Be careful what you choose, as others will get to know you by that name. Next you’re going to go through Basic Training. The game is going to walk you through how to do different things like hacking a portal, linking portals, retrieve XM, Deploy Resonators, Fire XMP and more. It’s a great way to get your feet wet in the game.
Once you’ve completed the training, you’ll be able to choose whether you want to be part of the resistance or enlightened factions. You are now ready to go out and hack portals, recharge resonators, deploy resonators, and collect XM. Now if you’re the type that just likes to sit at home and play games, this is not the game for you. You’re going to need to get up and do some walking, or in some cases some driving is needed. You actually have to physically go to portals to hack them, deploy resonators and claim them as your own. As you can see in the image below, a lot of the portals here in Detroit are downtown.
Resistance or Enlightened?
Depending on who you ask, you’ll get either answer. Ingress is basically splitting the entire world into two teams. You have the Resistance and the Enlightened.
The Enlightenment faction is attempting to help the Shapers infiltrate Earth. Followers believe that the Shapers bring a powerful enlightenment that will lift humankind.
While the Resistance faction is defending the Earth from the Shaper ingression. They are seen by some as being fearful of change or progress, but the resistance is firm in its belief that it is protecting humanity.
So choose wisely!
Now that you’ve completed training and chosen your faction, it’s time to find some portals to hack. You can have your phone out with the Ingress app running and look for portals, but there is a simpler less battery intensive way. From your computer, go to ingress.com/intel. From there you will see a larger area of the map you would see on your phone, or if you’re playing on your tablet. you can move around and zoom in to find some new portals to hack, or attempt to take some away from the other faction.
You can also submit new portals, which we’ll be covering a bit further down in this guide. Not all portals you’ll be able to take away from the other faction, especially if you’re a new player. You’ll need to level up by hacking other portals and recharging resonators on portals that are owned by your faction.
Submitting New portals
Ingress launched with many portals through out the world. But the development team behind the game basically just added everything that’s listed on hmdb.org, which is the Historical Marker Database. So existing portals will include Post offices, Fire stations, statues, historical buildings, etc. Now for most people that means you’ll need to travel a bit to find some portals, I am one of those people. But luckily you can submit new portals to Niantic Labs to be added to the game.
As a general rule of thumb, new portals should have the following:
- Should be safe and accessible to the public
- Example types of objects:
- Unique architecture
- Outdoor murals
- Historic buildings
- Special outdoor buildings
- Unique local businesses
Now to submit new portals, simply follow the instructions laid out below:
- Make sure your GPS on camera app is enabled (Open Camera > Settings > Store location >ON; you may also need to turn on Settings > Location services > Share Picture Location, if available).
- Snap a photo with your Android phone with the standard camera app
- Select the Share option for the photo
- Share to NIA Super Ops (with the Ingress logo)
- Enter a proposed title for the Portal and touch OK.
- This prepares an email to our Niantic Ops team with the photo and location of the object.
- Send the email.
- Our operations team will review the picture and object location and then add it to the game database if it meets our general criteria for Portals.
So as you can see it’s actually quite easy to do. But it’ll take quite a while for these new portals to pop up on the map. Niantic Labs warn that it’ll take about 2-3 weeks to approve these new portals, then another 2-3 weeks for it to go live once approved. Which means you can expect new portals to pop up 4-6 weeks after you submit them.
Linking up with other Ingress Players in your area
It’s always fun to talk strategy with other players in your area. Now that Ingress has been around for nearly a month, you can find both Resistance and Enlightened pages for nearly every area of the US, and some outside the US over on Google+. Which this is a good way to get more people using Google+, what a bunch of geniuses over at Google and Niantic Labs.
Final Thoughts before you Head out into the Addictive Ingress World
Beware, Ingress is very addictive. Once you start playing and getting the hang of it, you probably won’t stop playing. This information should be enough to get you started on your journey, but Android Headlines will have you covered for more tips and tricks and even some strategies for playing Ingress in the coming days as more and more people get their invites. So I’ll see you out there!