Ingress FS: meet and greet other local players

I talked to you about Ingress before: this augmented reality game pushed me to get out of the house and proved to be quite addictive.

This past weekend I got to spend the day with other players and confirm that I wasn’t the only addict in town ?

As you get more familiar with Ingress, you inevitably start meeting other players, either at events organized by your local team, or at random in the street. Niantic Labs, the company behind Ingress, also organizes official events but I had never had the chance to attend one until this past weekend.

Niantic organizes 2 types of events:

  • Anomalies are organized by Niantic in specific locations, use a complicated scoring system, and include elements that bring the game’s back-story forward.
  • First Saturday events can be organized by local communities all around the globe, and have simple rules. The main goal of these events is to help new players level-up and get them more familiar with the game mechanics. They happen on the First Saturday of each month.

I’ve always been curious about meeting more Ingress players, see how others play, what motivates them, and play a bit differently, a bit more aggressively, for a day :)

Last Saturday, about a hundred of us met at a coffee shop to register. We then walked to Budapest’s Castle district, talked strategy with our team, divided into small groups, and started playing. For 2 hours, the castle became our battleground! We walked around, looking at our phones, fighting to get control of virtual checkpoints in the middle of one of the most touristic places of Budapest. It was fun! ?

I also broke a few records on that day: I levelled up and am now Level 12 in the game (w00t!); I walked 14.9km (9.25 miles) on that day, which happens to be my record this month. And I got a badge since I reached another milestone in the game: I walked 1000km (621 miles) while playing, since I started playing about a year ago.

All in all, it was a great day, a good exercise, and it was good to meet new friends. I hope I’ll get the chance to do it again!