Ingress

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Ingress

Postby perkana » Thu Jan 29, 2015 4:06 pm

I have a friend who is obsessed with this game. It sounds better than when my HS friends used to play D&D online (I always thought it was kinda ridiculous if you ask me).
Does anybody here play it?
I'll leave you the wiki description:
Ingress is an augmented reality massively multiplayer online role playing GPS-dependent game created by Niantic Labs, a startup within Google, originally for Android devices, and since July 14, 2014 for Apple's iOS. The game has a complex science fiction back story with a continuous open narrative.
The gameplay consists of establishing "portals" at places of public art, landmarks, monuments, etc., and linking them to create virtual triangular fields over geographic areas. Progress in the game is measured by the number of "mind units" (MUs), i.e. people, nominally controlled by each faction (as illustrated on the Intel Map).The necessary links between portals may range from meters to kilometers, to hundreds of kilometers in operations of considerable logistical complexity. International links and fields are not uncommon, as Ingress has attracted an enthusiastic following in cities worldwide amongst both young and old, to the extent that the gameplay is itself a lifestyle for some, including tattoos.
Setting
The game makers' framing device for the game is as follows: Physicists at CERN have discovered that the Earth has been seeded with “Exotic Matter,” or XM, associated with the Shapers, a mysterious phenomenon or alien race which is neither described nor seen (and which thus functions as a MacGuffin). The in-universe motivation for the Enlightened faction is their belief that the Shapers are working toward a powerful enlightenment which will uplift all mankind. The Resistance believes that it is protecting humanity from Shaper ingression. The factions have, however, been occasionally observed to ignore the back-story and to co-operate for the sake of real-life gameplay and game balance, for example by establishing neutral zones and rules of engagement.

Gameplay

The Intel Map for Seattle, Washington, on December 2, 2012. Virtual portals (octagons with spokes) and control fields (colored spaces) overlay a map of real geographical and civic space via Google Maps; green represents the Enlightened faction, and blue the Resistance. The space controlled by the two factions is fairly evenly matched here.
A player using the mobile app is presented with a map representing the area nearby. The map has a black background and is completely unmarked, except for unlabeled buildings and roads which are represented in grey. Visible on the map are portals, Exotic Matter, links, control fields, and items that have been dropped from a player's inventory.

Players must be physically near objects on the map to interact with them. The mobile client represents the player as a small arrow in the center of a 40-meter circle which represents the perimeter within which direct interaction is possible.

Players are rewarded with AP (Access Points) for actions within the game. Accumulating AP beyond certain thresholds grants you higher access levels, i.e. access to stronger items. The access levels are numbered 1 through 16, with 16 being the highest as of May 8, 2014. Niantic Labs has announced that they will introduce missions to the game.

Factions
There are two factions to choose from. The Enlightened fight believing their actions will uplift humanity, and bring about the next chapter in human evolution, whereas the Resistance believes in preserving what freedom humanity has left. The Resistance is represented by blue and the Enlightened are represented by green. In some areas, the Resistance are jokingly referred to as "Smurfs" and the Enlightened are "Frogs" or "Toads". Portals are either grey (unclaimed), blue, or green.

Portals
In the game, Earth has a large number of “Portals”, made visible by the "scanner" (the mobile phone game app). They are colored green, blue, or grey, depending on whether they are controlled by the Enlightened, the Resistance, or currently unclaimed, respectively. A portal with no resonators is unclaimed. Players acquire game items (resonators, weapons, etc.) by maneuvering themselves into proximity to a portal and "hacking" it. Any player can hack any portal and receive items, subject to limits on frequency. Hacking an enemy portal earns the player action points, at the risk of being attacked by the portal.

To claim a portal for a faction, a player deploys at least one resonator on it. If a portal is claimed by the enemy, the player must first neutralize it by destroying the opponents' resonators and mods by firing "weapons" called XMP ("eXotic Matter Pulse") Bursters. In the lore, XM comes in two polarities, and the XM of one faction's polarity annihilates the other's.

A portal may be equipped with up to eight "resonators" from one faction. Resonators have levels, ranging from L1 to L8. A player can deploy resonators only up to his or her own level, and there are rules about how many of each level an individual can deploy. The game mechanics reward teamwork by limiting the number of high-level resonators a single player can deploy; up to eight players working together can create a far higher-level portal than any one player can create individually. Furthermore, resonators decay spontaneously over time, and must be recharged in order to maintain control of the portal. This can either be done on site, or remotely through the use of a portal key and XM reserves.

A portal may also be equipped with up to four modifications, or "mods." As of March 2014, there are six types of modification available: Shields, Force Amplifiers, Link Amplifiers, Multi-hack, Heat Sinks, and Turrets. These have effects such as making the portal more difficult to attack, increasing the intensity of the portal’s response to attackers, and increasing the yield of hacking the portal. As of November 2014, an individual player may place up to 2 mods per portal.

Portals are typically associated with buildings and landmarks of historic and/or architectural significance such as sculptures and other public art, libraries, post offices, memorials, places of worship, public transit hubs, parks and other recreational or tourist spaces. Players may submit requests for the creation of new portals, and the number of portals has increased steadily over the lifetime of the game. The density of portals correlates with population density, thus the central areas of cities typically contain the highest concentration of portals.

Portal links and control fields
Two portals that have all eight resonators deployed and are controlled by the same faction can be linked by a player from that faction who stands within range of one and has the portal key for the other. The maximum length of a link that can be created depends on the average resonator level around the portal – the higher the level, the longer the link that can be created. However, one cannot make a link that crosses a pre-existing link from either faction. Both portals need to be kept at or above a minimum energy level to maintain the link. The opposing faction can destroy the link by attacking one or both portals so that the energy level falls below the critical level.

When three portals are linked in a triangle, they create a control field that claims the Mind Units within that field for their faction. Portals within a field cannot originate links, but can be linked from the portals on the perimeter. The opposing faction can destroy a control field by destroying one or more of the links that compose it.

Anomalies
XM Anomalies are periods of unusually high XM concentration where players from both factions compete to control clusters of portals in order to win points for their team. Anomalies usually occur over the course of several weeks, with different events located in major cities around the world. Anomaly sites are divided into two categories: Primary and Satellite locations. Niantic Labs employees, as well as characters from the Ingress story, often attend events at Primary anomaly locations. More points are awarded to the prevailing faction at Primary Sites than at Satellite sites. The outcome of XM Anomalies often influence future events in the Ingress backstory.

Recursion was the first anomaly for which players were awarded badges, occurring from February 15, 2014 to March 29, 2014. However, there were anomalies prior to this, such as Operation Cassandra.

Interitus was the second anomaly for which players were awarded badges that was held around April, May, and June 2014.

Helios was the third Anomaly chain for which players were awarded badges. The event sequence was held in July, August and September 2014.

Darsana is the fourth anomaly for which players were awarded badges. The anomaly started October 18, 2014 and ended December 13, 2014.
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