Enlightened or not

The Enlightened
The Enlightened

You’ll recall I mentioned the game Ingress a few weeks ago, a game from Google that one plays with an Android smartphone (“scanner”) using Google maps of the real world. I had given up getting an invitation to the closed beta from my son and signed up for one at Ingress.com. Yesterday I finally got the code from my son and an invitation from Ingress (only 2 or 3 days from sign-up to invitation, so the “closed” beta isn’t very closed anymore).

Per my promise to my son, I joined the Enlightened rather than the Resistance, and today I ventured out to pick up some “XM” — exotic matter — and start learning how to help turn my little part of the world an Enlightened green. It was all very interesting, and no doubt will become moreso as I gain experience.

If I gain experience.

It turns out I can barely see the display on my phone when I’m outdoors. It’s great indoors, and pretty good in the car. But if I’m standing outside under the open sky, I really can’t see the display well enough to know for sure what I’m doing. Whether this is the result of my last-generation phone or my last-generation eyes, I can’t say. But at best it will make the game more difficult and less fun, and at worst, impossible.

I was prepared for the steep learning curve and frustration I endure with any new game. I was not prepared for being unable to see the game at all.

13 thoughts on “Enlightened or not

    1. Considering most people talk without looking at their phones, you might be seeing Ingress players. Looks like there’s a lot of activity in your area, and it’s more green (Enlightened) than blue (Resistance).

  1. I’m tempted to request an invite, but then what if I don’t play it? I hate to be pressured to play a game. Also, my daughter now insists I re-read Animal Farm, because i can’t remember it. And I just got to the part where the horse leaves. I can’t remember the name of the horse. Maybe when I finish this book (which is pretty short), I’ll request an invite. Actually, maybe I’ll just get my kids to play it.

    1. Certainly you’re under no obligation to play just because you get an invite. But it can’t hurt to go ahead and request one. Until you are registered and can log into the Intel Map, you can’t really appreciate what the game is all about. Seeing portals on the map in your own neighborhood has a lot of appeal, and spotting a rare unclaimed one near here yesterday was enough to get me out the door for about three hours of “Ingress business.” I actually captured the portal and had my name all over it (rare occurrence for a newbie out on Day One) — for a whole two hours before the opposition took it away. 🙁

... and that's my two cents