BreakingModern – The world around you is not what it seems. If I had a nickel every time someone told me that, I’d be, well … increments of cents richer. But this time it just might be true, if by the world around you, you actually mean staring down at your phone while the world continues to move around you.
Yes, today’s app pick is a game, and that game is Ingress. Ingress is an ARMMOG, or Augmented Reality Massively Online Game. But let’s all agree to never call it that in public, ok? Check it out here on Google Play.
If you have no idea what Ingress, guardian portals, XM or Klue is, it’s not too late to get sucked in. Sure, you’ve missed a lot of story by now, but how many people are really interested in the storyline of this geocaching inspired game? There are a lot of cool cryptographic puzzles to solve throughout that give you codes to redeem using your scanner. That means more cool stuff to use when capturing or attacking portals.
Ingress in Simple Terms
Basically the gameplay breaks down like this (and keep in mind, this is an extremely simplified explanation based on what it says on the Google Play page). Your phone is a scanner once you have the app installed. You choose to play on either the awesome Resistance side, or the still awesome, but slightly less so Enlightened side. Blue and green respectively. A team of scientists in Europe finds a weird new form of energy called Exotic Matter, or XM. No one has any idea where it came from, but some people think it may be doing some weird mind control stuff on people. The Enlightened want to embrace the power, while the Resistance defend and try to protect what is left of our humanity.
So what does that all mean? You take your phone outside, drive around (bike, bus, walk whatever) and use the scanner to pick up XM. Always keep your XM full. Portals are located all over the place. For best results, check the Ingress intel map and plan your trip. Once you get to a portal there’s a few things you can do. If it’s unclaimed, and you have resonators, you can deploy them. If you deploy eight resonators by yourself it will fully power a portal. Once a portal is powered, it can then be linked to other portals using portal keys.
Again, I’m sure this all sounds complicated, but once you install the game and run the tutorial you’ll be good. There’s also a ton of great communities online. The first thing you should do after you install the game is find the active members on your team in your community, and see if there is a local page.
This will help in meeting other players and planning strategy. Plus players with the founder badge – who have been around since the days of closed beta Android – are usually happy to help a newbie. I’m sure everyone is happy to help, but those are the ones who know stuff.
I like to approach a portal, if it’s claimed on my team I’ll upgrade it if at all possible, check for links and then hack it. If it’s an enemy portal, then I’ll hack it and try to blow up the resonators if I can. You blow up an enemy portal’s resonators using XMP bursters. Again, all done sitting in the real world while using the phone as a scanner. This burns up a lot of battery since you constantly have your screen and GPS on, so keep that in mind when going on extended bombing runs or farming trips. It’s always good to keep one or two extra chargers with you. I like the kind you can put AA’s in, that way you don’t have to find a place to charge the charger, you can simply put new batteries in it.
Get to it!
That’s about all the game review I can do. Definitely check it out, it’s worth it, and not as complicated as it sounds. It’s gotten a lot better since the early closed beta days. Here’s some helpful links to get you started.
The Niantic Project YouTube channel has a ton of great videos to help you get started. Also make sure to check out the Ingress Report for more cool info. Also check out Ingress.com, as that’s their main site.
The Niantic Project page on Google+ has a ton of helpful information and links.
Again, as much as people hate the Ingress intel map, it can be your best friend. Don’t waste a bunch of unnecessary gas or time trying to figure out your link situation, when you can easily open up the map and plan it out beforehand.
If you are curious about the history of the game or anything like that, check out the Wiki page for Ingress.
Download Ingress here for Android on the Play Store, it’s free! There’s a version for Apple iOS as well.
Have a great app you want to share? Email it to apps@BreakingModern.com.
Screenshots: Mat Lee