Make the world around you a gaming zone with the Ingress app
There is a new game app in town that has neighbourhoods, cities, countries and continents, connected in a science fiction type of environment. Created by Niantic Labs, a start-up of Google, the Ingress game is definitely one of a kind. While most games have you glued to your seat for hours, this game needs you to move out of the comfort of your home in order to succeed in the game. This GPS dependent game is built for your Android smartphones. You might find the game confusing, so it’s a good idea to read up about it before you start playing.
This is how the Game Works:
- The first thing you need to do when you join is to select a team, your choices being the Resistance or the Enlightened.
- The Enlightened are trying to help the Shapers take over the earth and bring a sense of enlightenment to its inhabitants, the Resistance wants to stop it from taking control over people.
- Once you pick your team you will have to compete with the opposite team to take over the maximum number of portals.
- The game requires you to physically go out into the street and find portals which are plots set up by the Ingress team.
- Once you find a portal, you need to hack into it to claim them. To hack a portal you need to physically go to it and using game weapons and resonators, hack into it.
- Once the portal is yours, you will need to protect it with shields which increase according to the number of portals you have.
- There’s more: You also need to link the portals together to create a network.Sometimes these portal links can create fields which even span countries. Your gaming place is no longer your phone screen, when you play Ingress it is the world we live in.
The most difficult part in the game is actually finding the portals, which is mostly near landmarks like a fire brigade, museum or post office. Each portal is far away from each other, could be metres away or even a few kilometres away, so remember to get out your walking shoes. Taking your car out might speed up the game. Finding hidden portals can be too much for some people causing them to dropout sooner or later which is understandable as it can be a lot of hard work for one game. Then again, it’s an encouraging medium to get people out of their home, in search of adventure. You can also use your smartphone camera to click and send new portal suggestions to Ingress.
When you download the app, it displays a map of the surrounding area where the only visible things are portals, control fields, exotic matter, roads, items from a player’s inventory and links. You need to follow the map wisely to reach a portal. With a sci-fi storyline it is the perfect remedy to get tech geeks out of their homes and get some exercise in their bones. The game makes the world around you a battle place and empowers you with the responsibility to protect it, giving your ego a boost. People have gone through great lengths to capture portals, some even flying across cities and countries because of the craze the app has created internationally. It is common to find groups gathering together in places around the world to play this game. Some of them are so in love with the game that they have even tattooed images of it to their body making it an important part of their life. If you happen to see people walking down the street with eyes glued to their phone, it’s probably because there are on a quest for the next portal.
Niantic Labs which is a Google start-up has not only done a good job in creating the app but it has also effectively promoted many of Google’s products via this app. Firstly its available for Android users and secondly it uses Google Maps to a large extent to find portals. It also uses Streetview, YouTube and sends you updates through Gmail, Google Hangouts and G+. You need to use Google in one way or the other to play Ingress which is a smart move by the company.
While playing this game on your own may be fun, it gets much better when you play along with friends. The game often forces you to take hikes to find well hidden portals and having friends along can turn a simple game into an adventure. At the end of a long day of gaming, you will return home to sore feet and a drained out phone battery but it’s all worth it when you find a portal and hack into it. Ingress is addictive, so download the app and get hooked on.