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Canberra is not as it seems

By 7 January 2014 39

ingress poster

…for many reasons.

Canberra is being over-run by the resistance. We are an enlightened city, full of enlightened people (mostly), but the ‘intel map’ is depicting that this is not the case. The enlightened seem to be losing the battle. We need more help!

If you’re over 16 and based in the Australian Capital Territory, have an android phone, a reasonable data plan, a need to get out and about to explore and maybe make new friends, get in touch with our community!

email: canberra.enlightened@gmail.com

____________________

More info:

‘Ingress’ is an augmented reality game that is (currently) played on android-based mobile phones. The enlightened faction have training members available in each area of Canberra.
While the game may sound or seem complicated, it doesn’t take much to get into – especially with the help of our friendly, patient and encouraging agents.

I struggled to put this post into a riot-act category. It fits into SO many: entertainment – sport – technology – sight-seeing – art appreciation – nature – travel – socialising. I’ve tried to explain why below.

Ingress gives players the opportunity to be:

social (or not!) – we have faction and cross-faction meetups, drinks, bbqs, training days, coordinated exercises, there’s even an ingress ‘olympics’! You can choose to play ‘lone-ranger’ and go it alone, or you may even prefer an enigmatic style, revelling in anonymity. Some players have become friends with agents on both factions. Some have not. Some players are partners – even families play! Regardless, the interaction (or the choice to not interact) is always fun!

competitive (or not!) – while some players are drawn to ingress for the social aspects, or simply to quell boredom, there are some who are hard-core gamer types intent on smashing opponent portals (or even portals belonging to specific rivals) and covering their vicinity in a field of their faction’s colour. Some players get kicks from helping other players ‘level’ or accomplish goals (whether these goals be huge fields of colour, or field ‘art’). Others are keen to ‘unlock achievements’ (like see how long they can keep a portal for, or top how many kms you’ve walked in a week).

fit (or not) – many portals are in walking distance to where you are right now. Playing ingress is a great way to go for a walk, jog, cycle your way around the nation’s capital and beyond. Many portals can be driven to, while some require a bit of a hike (or perhaps a dirtbike!) to access. You can even submit your own portals.

explorers – how well do you know your city? There are so many amazing places, cultural icons, viewpoints, natural and human-made locations that should be explored! You’ll see things you’ve never even noticed just because they are portals. Ingress provides great opportunity to travel abroad. There are portals on every continent of the globe. There are even portals in New Zealand!

less bored – many agents play during the course of their day-to-day routines (picking kids up from school, going to the shops for milk, commuting, dining out, exercising etc). Some have purchased battery packs for their phones so they can prolong their ingressing sessions. Some play sporadically, some seem to play all the time! You control when you play, how long you play for, how you play. Through ingress, you’re bound to pick up a new – and rather different – interest.

balanced – playing for the enlightened will help balance the scourge of the resistance in Canberra. There has been a large influx of blue agents and it would be a lot more fun to play in a more balanced team environment. So if you’re keen to support the current underdogs (and not just choose the ingress ‘default’ faction when you’ve completed training), join the enlightened.

Regardless of playing style, Ingress has attracted people from all types of backgrounds and interests and is played across the world. Here in Canberra, some of our top-level players include doctors, nurses, public servants, housewives, film producers, mechanics, gym instructors, public servants, data engineers, students, retirees, public servants…

____________________

Why I play:

I play when I feel like it. I’m part of a community. I’ve travelled abroad and met up with members of the Paris Ingress community (both factions) and played with groups in London. I can play in teams, or go it alone. It has taken me to weird and wonderful locations on searches for portals (even locally! Some places I wouldn’t have even known existed!). I have met some brilliant people. I enjoy the dynamic nature of the game and the strategic elements, but sometimes… I just like blowing stuff up.

Besides, green is my favourite colour and our agents are much better looking.

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39 Responses to Canberra is not as it seems
#1
Solidarity4:18 pm, 07 Jan 14

I like to keep my computers and my outside seperate.

#2
Pestiness4:55 pm, 07 Jan 14

Solidarity said :

I like to keep my computers and my outside seperate.

lol… spoken as a true nerd.

Conversation when I tried to recruit my bro:

Me: ‘it’s a great nerd game! You go outside and…’
Him: ‘stop right there!’

#3
Gungahlin Al6:21 pm, 07 Jan 14

It’s a great game, addictive even.
And it’s a great way to meet lots of interesting people from all walks.
I’ve walked and ridden so many kilometres since I started playing, and gotten to know far more about this city. There might be an underlying profit driver from Google behind the game, but I think the benefits really put the balance in favour of the players.
Helps that I chose the right team too – Enlightened.
“Resistance” might sound sexy to some, but their mantra is just wrong.

#4
Tim338:43 pm, 07 Jan 14

The whole mantra and explanation reminds me of a typical psychotic delusion. Wouldn’t want to get into it then start believing it.

#5
Tim338:50 pm, 07 Jan 14

Actually bugger it, it looks pretty good I’m in. A good excuse for a walk, maybe the excuse to beat down and take the phone off the opposing team too. (is that allowed?)

#6
Mordd9:21 pm, 07 Jan 14

I’m intrigued but you don’t really make clear at all what the actual gameplay involves other than going to real places augmented with virtual information – that’s as much as I can get from reading this article. i tried the website but that’s even less useful than this article is at explaining *how* you actually play the game or *what* you actually do – for example what are portals, how are they setup/maintained/attacked/etc… lots of detail missing from this article.

I’d download it to check it out…. but I only have an iPhone (it was free gift from a friend upgrading) so alas it appears I am locked out of this for the time being, do us a favour though and update us when you add iOS support and if you could write up some actual detail of what gameplay can involve that would be even better.

Thanks for introducing us to this idea, await your response.

#7
neanderthalsis9:30 pm, 07 Jan 14

Tim33 said :

The whole mantra and explanation reminds me of a typical psychotic delusion. Wouldn’t want to get into it then start believing it.

Once upon a time people just joined the Children of God or the Scientologists…

#8
poetix9:36 pm, 07 Jan 14

‘You’ll see things you’ve never even noticed just because they are portals.’

I don’t want to notice the world because of screen based games. That strikes me as incredibly sad. I suppose I just don’t understand the attraction, and have no interest in trying to.

Glad you are having fun though. Each to his or her own. (Even those gaming ‘housewives’.)

#9
Holden Caulfield9:42 pm, 07 Jan 14

“If you’re over 16 and based in the Australian Capital Territory, have an android phone…”

http://i1.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/349/990/304.gif

#10
Masquara11:24 pm, 07 Jan 14

I wonder what the cult agenda is here …

#11
Skidbladnir1:01 am, 08 Jan 14

Hello, Pestiness.

You are my most reliable of opponents, and I hate you for this post.
*laughs evilly*

For the rest of you: Ingress is basically nerd orienteering meets capture the flag. Or competitive spatial geometry with inventory management and bragging rights.
More fun than it sounds, and an excuse to get fit/have some thinking walks during the day. You’ll meet nice people, interesting people, and everyday people, all while being led to local artworks you’d never known about, or maybe just never noticed even though you see them everyday.

But some people take it _way too seriously_.

#12
Dogen7:00 am, 08 Jan 14

For more of a technical explanation of game play try http://decodeingress.me Mordd.

#13
thatsnotme10:44 am, 08 Jan 14

poetix said :

‘You’ll see things you’ve never even noticed just because they are portals.’

I don’t want to notice the world because of screen based games. That strikes me as incredibly sad. I suppose I just don’t understand the attraction, and have no interest in trying to.

Glad you are having fun though. Each to his or her own. (Even those gaming ‘housewives’.)

I think it’s less about noticing the world, and more about discovering what you didn’t even know was there. For example, some of the art that’s hidden in the back alleys and laneways around the city centre. There’s no reason for me to go into them normally, but there’s all sorts of interesting stuff in them. And because the location of portals are user contributed, you get to see what other people think is interesting in an area – there’s an opportunity to share those unique things that not many people know about.

#14
Agent_Q11:08 am, 08 Jan 14

Well played, Agent Pestiness. I see you are trying to recruit unsuspecting civilians to the evil cause of the so-called “Enlightened” – but in game, known as the “slimes”. This is not just because their faction colour is green, or because of the way they often roam about Canberra in sticky masses; but because they have some pretty slimy ways of achieving their goals.

In the game’s storyline, the Resistance is fighting against mind control from outside, alien forces (“The Shapers”: mind control that has resulted in conflict between people and the detainment, disappearance and death of people around the world. We realise that if this mind control were, indeed, a force for positive change, these awful events would not have occurred; and thus, we seek to uphold and defend the best aspects of humanity: our independence, honour, egalitarianism, and ability to achieve great things in the face of terrible odds.

In real life, the Resistance in Canberra also aspire to these goals. We are the true underdogs, with almost HALF the number of active members of the so-called “Enlightened”; and yet we have held our own for almost the entirety of the last year. In addition, we have achieved much in the face of such overwhelming odds: creating the first “portal” to reach the highest level achievable, Level 8; at one point, completely eliminating all green portals in the ACT and region; and an interstate trip where some of our members made the first Level 8 portal at the top of Mount Kosciusko.

Our group also demonstrates a strong respect for women, as evidenced by one of our group members organising the first Level 8 portals created entirely by women in the region (and, my wife tells me, a delightful picnic to accompany the event!).

Our group has been recognised internationally for the creation of a real-life achievement system: our members are eligible to be awarded these medals for their achievements, and we have started to extend this system of recognition Australia-wide: https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/yourphotos?pid=5954947016745173794&oid=107833440350942817623.

We have achieved a great deal within the game, despite being far fewer in number than the “slimes,” and we have even more real-life events, challenges, and achievements planned to maximise the game’s enjoyment for all of our members.

Join the Resistance and defend humanity! Canberra is proud to have one of the best Ingress Resistance communities in the country, with significant recognition nationally and internationally, and we welcome all to join our worthy struggle. Email resistance.canberra@gmail.com for more information. :)

#15
Dork11:44 am, 08 Jan 14

Installed it out of curiosity after reading this. Can’t get past the first screen, maybe my Gmail account isn’t google enough.
Maybe they’ll start taking you to McDonalds as advertising.

#16
billius11:47 am, 08 Jan 14

I find you’re quite misleading… You already outnumber the resistance by far! In the interest of balance, I urge people to choose the resistance.

It also seems to have become a game of smokers vs non smokers. I haven’t had a time running into the ‘enlightened’ where I haven’t had someone puffing smoke right in my face.

We have constant impromptu meet ups, as well as lunches that usually involve 15-20 people, something that the ‘enlightened’ don’t seem to bother with. So join the resistance! We need you!

#17
Varthrax11:53 am, 08 Jan 14

Pestiness I must commend you on perpetuating the evil ways of the slimes through your blatant use of Enlightened propaganda on a forum of unsuspecting civilians. You are a credit to your team, much like Darth Sidius to the Empire.

To the people of Canberra I say this – be mindful to not become beguiled by pesti’s sweet words. Whilst her points about the enjoyment of the game / war are accurate, lines such as “our friendly, patient and encouraging agents”, “playing for the enlightened will help balance the scourge of the resistance in Canberra”, and “our agents are much better looking” are all falsities (though pesti is a bit of a looker I must say – but she’s one of few).

Canberra, I won’t be so bold as to tell you to join The Resistance. It takes certain courage to fight against evil and stand up for what is right. I put the decision to do so in your hands.

More and more people are joining the battle to fight oppression and stand up for themselves, their families, and their country. Will you sit back and let the war be fought all around you? Or will you take things into your own hands?

For more information I implore you to contact resistance.canberra@gmail.com

#18
DrKoresh11:58 am, 08 Jan 14

I just want to find a group of nerds who’ll let me play D’n’D with them :(

#19
zorro2912:11 pm, 08 Jan 14

*blink

I really must be too old; I have no idea what any of this is about even after reading it. Are Resistance and Enlightened opposing teams of Amazing Race-type people?

Hmmm…at any rate, I have an iPhone and don’t live in Canberra – so I guess that counts me out, twice.

#20
thatsnotme12:46 pm, 08 Jan 14

zorro29 said :

*blink

I really must be too old; I have no idea what any of this is about even after reading it. Are Resistance and Enlightened opposing teams of Amazing Race-type people?

Hmmm…at any rate, I have an iPhone and don’t live in Canberra – so I guess that counts me out, twice.

Ha, it really is one of those games that elicit blank looks if you try to describe it to someone, but it’s pretty simple really.

There’s apparently a version coming for the iPhone, and it’s definitely not a game that’s restricted to Canberra – pretty sure you could play it in any city or town anywhere in the western world!

#21
Primal12:58 pm, 08 Jan 14

Colour me blue.

#22
lobster1:00 pm, 08 Jan 14

You are all nerds and I hate you.
Especially those of you on the resistance.

#23
Deref1:03 pm, 08 Jan 14

It looks like fun! I wonder what it is.

#24
Pestiness1:14 pm, 08 Jan 14

Howdy,

Thanks everyone for your interest. I’ve had fun playing and just thought I’d share. Happy to post another notification when it’s available on iOS.

Skidbladnir gives a simple explanation of the game-play. And an amusing one.

If you want more info on the dynamics of how to play, the backstory, etc there are some great resources and links here: https://support.google.com/ingress/#topic=3261401 (including youtube vids).

I’m not into the whole ‘backstory’ stuff (it can even seem a bit cultish!), but it gives depth to the game for those who need it.

:)

#25
zorro292:16 pm, 08 Jan 14

thatsnotme said :

zorro29 said :

*blink

I really must be too old; I have no idea what any of this is about even after reading it. Are Resistance and Enlightened opposing teams of Amazing Race-type people?

Hmmm…at any rate, I have an iPhone and don’t live in Canberra – so I guess that counts me out, twice.

Ha, it really is one of those games that elicit blank looks if you try to describe it to someone, but it’s pretty simple really.

There’s apparently a version coming for the iPhone, and it’s definitely not a game that’s restricted to Canberra – pretty sure you could play it in any city or town anywhere in the western world!

Well Sydney probably has something going on. I’ll have to do some research. :)

#26
Pestiness2:28 pm, 08 Jan 14

DrKoresh said :

I just want to find a group of nerds who’ll let me play D’n’D with them :(

hehe. I know a few of those types too. I’m def not one of them. Contact me at pestiness AT gmail.com and I’ll hook you up.

#27
Sandman2:28 pm, 08 Jan 14

Masquara said :

I wonder what the cult agenda is here …

I’m still trying to figure that out. It exhibits all the symptoms of a cult. Players seem to get overly excited about it and try their hardest to push the virtues of the “game” onto non players without realising just how uninterested we are.

#28
Mordd2:35 pm, 08 Jan 14

Dogen said :

For more of a technical explanation of game play try http://decodeingress.me Mordd.

Lol I had to ask, that seems a bit too technical for someone who knows nothing about the game yet haha, I only understand about 25% of the articles I skimmed, they seem aimed at experienced players not as a way of getting to know the game.

Pestiness said :

Howdy,

Thanks everyone for your interest. I’ve had fun playing and just thought I’d share. Happy to post another notification when it’s available on iOS.

Skidbladnir gives a simple explanation of the game-play. And an amusing one.

If you want more info on the dynamics of how to play, the backstory, etc there are some great resources and links here: https://support.google.com/ingress/#topic=3261401 (including youtube vids).

I’m not into the whole ‘backstory’ stuff (it can even seem a bit cultish!), but it gives depth to the game for those who need it.

:)

Now that is exactly what i was looking for, a tutorial to help learn how the game works, something to initiate a non-player, and yes backstory helps a lot to give context to the actions of the game. This link should be added to the article if you want people to have a chance of making sense of this.

@Agent_Q – the resistance intrigues me, and im quite tempted, but this comments makes me wonder if id be picking the wrong side:

billius said :

It also seems to have become a game of smokers vs non smokers. I haven’t had a time running into the ‘enlightened’ where I haven’t had someone puffing smoke right in my face.

Does that mean as a smoker myself I wouldn’t we welcomed in the resistance, is the game really split along these lines or this more a in game joke/jab that I am not getting and to be ignored in the larger scheme of things?

Ok now I just need an iOS version of the app and I can try it out, sadly I cannot afford even just a cheapo android device purely to play given I already have a perfectly working (free) iPhone 4, so I’ll just have to bookmark the site I guess and check back every now and again till it’s added.

#29
Pestiness2:49 pm, 08 Jan 14

I love how all the ‘resistance’ players jumped on here, flattering me personally, yet refuting my (mostly) legitimate claims.

People, do not believe their lies.

I will just say:

The enlightened definitely are the underdogs. In the area where I live, I am the sole level 8 green player. There are at least 5 resistance players who live in the group of 7 suburbs. I would dispute the fact that we have more ‘active’ players. There are some resistance players that play around the clock. Numbers don’t equal activity. We enlightened seem to have a much better ingress/life balance.

I am known and respected by members from both factions and understand that there is a small degree of ‘disagreement and infighting’ in the resistance, where it simply does not exist on our team.

It is true, however, that the ‘resistance’ are well coordinated, play seriously and hard, and are deserving of the fact that this town is currently ‘blue’. …for now. ;)

I also have to refute that we have slimy tactics. We’re generally too busy having fun and revelling in our lack of coordination for ‘tactics’. ;)

OK. I lied about the better looking stuff. We’re all physically unattractive. On both teams.

Civilians: Which ever team you choose, you will have fun. But I will buy you a beer if you join and play for the enlightened.

#30
Mordd2:53 pm, 08 Jan 14

@Pestiness – crazy question, but having thought of it im madly curious to know – if you had 2 phones (or even 2 sim cards? how does the game identify players?) could you play both sides at the same time? Does anyone do this, is it banned? What are the rules on team switching and the like? Is there a degree of spying and espionage that goes on along with the game (im hoping you say yes to this last one especially – this would appeal to me personally *evil grin*).

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