Why, How Dare They !


It was a typical work day in Downtown Burbank, until it wasn’t.    I blued up the uncovered parts of downtown, someone came in and wrecked it, I blued things up again.   The usual.   The usual suspects making their appearances and doing their things, whether helps or hindrances depending on their team.    A local ENL was spending extra time downtown for whatever reason – I was teasing him about having lunch, but he’s staying in that area for FAR too long for it to be that.

Meetings went OK.   I get an order (?”Request”) to hurry up and finish up a review of some data before next Tuesday so I am moving forward with that.   Sitting at my desk, my scanner by my side and charging while open, with the PC in front of me filled with numbers.    And I look at the scanner and see a big old field built right next door !    So of course, I took a closer look.

The ENL agent had first taken out a blocking portal, and then moved in next door, and thrown a major field.    This is not a BAF – more of a LAF, little field, but with 6 layers at 20k each it counts a fair bit.   He seemed to be alone.    I went out to tussle with him, nervous about finishing my assignment, but this is clearly my fight.

As I am killing my next-door-anchor, I find out this is actually the first part of his layering plans.   WHAT ?   HE’S GOING TO LAYER THROUGH DOWNTOWN BURBANK ?    I didn’t think so, and set out to stop him.

First portal got an Axa and some other shield, which went down quick.   It was nice to use Ultrastrikes for a change instead of recycling them.    And while I’m killing the first one, a second one pops up and extends the field.

Down Angeleno I raced.    I knew he was going to continue to layer, how far I had no idea.   So I went past his portal to another and threw a blocking field.   And damned if he didn’t throw yet another layer as I’m doing this !

I ran right past San Fernando looking for a block.

I get my block up.   He can’t go farther without dealing with that, at least.    I fishhooked through the streets and alleyways and took down both of his other anchors.    Now I should be done, I’m thinking.    I haven’t SEEN him do anything else, maybe he’s out of keys and has left.   Better see what I can do to throw blocks.

I was not finished.   Back he went to my next-door portal !    I walked into range and the duel began, with an OK result.    I wanted to stop him before he fielded, by knocking resonators off an unshielded portal.   It works sometimes, depends on the enemy agent.  But it didn’t work with this guy.   He put down more resos, linked it, and used an AXA.   I continued cutting loose with bursters.    After he put down a second AXA on the portal though, it was an easy decision to let loose with an ADA to flip it blue and kill his field.   Now I have a strong portal in my neighborhood.

I am madly trying to put eyes on this guy, despite my less-than-impressive record at spotting agents.   Best guess is he did see me – I am not subtle given this unexpected intrusion.    Up the street I went towards Glenoaks looking for blocks in case he decided to go after his AXAs again.

This place is a portal. Why, I am unsure.

I capped the Fosters Freeze and threw a few blocks.    Downtown looks OK assuming the enemy agent has retreated, but he isn’t done.   How many keys did this guy have ?   He takes a portal across the street, fields it, and I retake it, and we keep trading until finally he has has field up one more time, right in front of the Fosters Freeze.

What a nasty, ugly field over the Verdugos and anchored in the surrounding communities.

No help has materialized – probably because it’s tough to drop work and play a game.   I realize my antagonist is going to just keep throwing so I verify the checkpoint times and retreat.   I mostly need to keep him from increasing the size of his field – obviously, he’s going to keep throwing this a lot longer than I have time for.   And it works – he leaves too.   And the field goes down, finally, as I leave work for the day and blast it into oblivion.   No checkpoints made.

It’s a bit of a sobering reminder – your portals ARE NOT YOURS.    It’s all part of a gameboard, that may find unexpected pieces upon it at any time.    I did not expect pulling a layered field down through Downtown – it probably helped him that it was still half ruined from ENL attacks.    And I played right into this guys hands, actually.

Clearly this dude does not care about the greater score – he was scoring MU for Illuminator and bragging rights.    The guy already has his onyx, with over 10m MU scored.    The better strategy was to block and leave it up, knocking it down near checkpoint time.    I’ll remember this in case this happens again.

And in the meantime, the eternal battle for Burbank continues.

It’s pretty even in Burbank, as usual.

And Santa Clarita looks unexpectedly Blue and Beautiful !

I’m not keeping up my side of the town though.



Two Years of Ingress


Tomorrow is my two-year anniversary in Ingress.

I have changed immensely in the past two years.    See that blog title ?    Today, Gaming Is Life is even more correct.    Ingress and Life are interconnected tightly.   To illustrate, here’s the typical workday for me.

530 am.   Get up, check the Intel Map, scanner, and communications.    7 am, leave the house, drop off my daughter.    730 am, hit nearby portals and dump all XM into charging.    Drive to work.   Charge and hack when I can.   8 am, set up Burbank depending on what the enemy did.   Charge keys.    Start hacking to distraction – all items collected can be turned into XM, for charging.

During the workday – take breaks.    Watch what’s happening while spreadsheets are constructed, systems inspected, emails dictated, and employees instructed.   Take a walk when you can and build.   React to communications.   Oh, and charge keys.

430 pm.    Time to go home soon, make a plan.   Hit a minimum of 1 portal and make some fields or throw some blocks.    Charge keys.    Ask your wife what you’re supposed to be doing.    Take your kids to it (usually), or just go and do whatever it is.   And naturally, figure out if portals are nearby.   Hack them and build fields.

At all times, keep your XM bar “not full”, so that you can charge keys.    Drive for a while, and whenever you stop, dump that XM into a decaying portal.    Burn gear as you go, you certainly don’t need most of it, and leave about 1900 items in inventory so you can hack.    And because, you need to charge.

8 PM.    You’re in for the night now and usually “off duty”.   Homework is done, bills are paid, kids are fed.    Charge some keys and fall asleep, ready for 5 am tomorrow.

Weekends, special days, non work days – these all include Ingress integration.   The car broke down on Sunday in Belmont, CA – I walked the streets on Monday while they fixed it and blued up the area while collecting uniques.   So many of my uniques have come from situations like that.

Today, I find myself uninterested in big fields.    They’re just too much work to organize !    And the payoff is uncertain.    Instead I help others make their BA fields, stay in touch with the Resistance “Leaders” and help with the grand game as appropriate, but mostly keep the ground game going where-ever it is I happen to be.

I have seen a lot of changes in personnel as I’ve gone through the past two years.   Friendships have been made – to the extent you can via chat systems – with a staggering number of people.    I’ve been sad to see people go, sometimes due to leaving the game, and sometimes due to moving.     The cycle of dominance in any area moves around depending on how much time each side is putting into the game.

I am also surprised to see regular opponents disappear and reappear.    As I’m writing this a greenie I thought had quit forever took out a nearby portal.    The enemy has the same attrition problem, and familiar opponents have disappeared, new ones have come and gone, but my two main antagonists – one in Burbank and a couple from Santa Clarita – still are fighting against me, two years later.

One thing that keeps me going is badges.    I need about 600 more fields to get platinum Mind Controller; and all the other ones keep ticking away.    Fields are the easiest for me to make, working in a portal-dense area like I do, as I keep working towards double Trekker badge and a triple Translator badge.    Oh – and just like everyone else – my (?Deca ?   Ten times) Recharger badge.    Hang on, found some more portals that need charging.

Ingress 2.0 is rumored, and that’s about it.   I’ll believe it when I see it – we’ve waited about a year I believe for portal submissions to come back; in the meantime I’ve given up, the portals are the portals and their relationship to the real world is not that important to me anymore.    So Niantic doesn’t know how to move things forward in a useful period of time.    Pokemon was uninstalled months ago and won’t be coming back to my phone.    So for mobile gaming it’s Ingress, now and likely into year three.

Operation Portal Recon will someday provide a way to help with new submissions.   In the meantime, most portal removal requests and edits get rejected.    I did get a single removal request through – after, I dunno, 10 months of waiting – but the dozens of other edits suggested have all been ignored.    And guess when OPR is going live ?   Yeah, I don’t know either, but my guess is September 2017.

I look forward to working with my team for the next year.   Hopefully we can make LA County very blue; or just as important, Burbank totally blue, or finally have the Resistance take Valencia.    Eat, drink, be merry and hack together during the events that we all try to attend together.

Oh, be right back, time to recharge another portal.

Shards and Noobs, 2017 edition

It looked very pretty.

It looked very pretty.

The shard game – “Ingress as Air Hockey” – is in full swing again, and this time Niantic mixed up the rules and made many targets across the world.    One of them appeared in Downtown Pasadena, so I got my newbie and organized a night to go Ingressing out there.

I managed to farm a bunch of keys for the portal – available for RES players, just ask ! – so the primary goal for the evening is achieved.     Not that it’s likely that they will be needed, the closest shard – “Hockey Puck” – is in Peru.    But you never know.

The secondary purpose of the evening was a DISASTER.    I didn’t look carefully at Pasadena.    The day before, there were a group of ENL one resonator portals all over the area, and a few RES links and fields.     Seemed like time to go clean up, meet people, and level up my newbie friend.

Instead, I met no one (from our team anyway), the place was crawling with ENL, and there were many L8 portals well shielded fielding over the areas that I was in.    They got very busy over Friday night.

And my noob got discouraged and distracted.   We brought along a third friend – “I’m not playing this stupid game” – who found out we were going out and wanted to join us.   I didn’t really want him around on Ingress night, but I got him.   And this really made it hard to stop and Ingress.   I tried to do things as we wandered Old Town Pasadena, but neither of them wanted to stop.   When we finally did, we cleared a little area, and the ENL did what comes naturally and took away his portals.   In his noobness he found that very frustrating, even though I helped him recapture.    And he declared, yeah, I’m not playing this game.

So I’m a failure at recruiting for sure.    We’ve left very little contested areas in the SCV – it’s either Green or Blue – so it would have been hard to take him somewhere local.    But a quiet area is what he needed; you’re not going to get quiet if you’re near a shard target.

I did have a lot of fun defending the shard target – it started out as ENL last week, they scored it twice I believe – even though we were unsuccessful in stopping them.    I managed to throw links from Santa Clarita to Running Springs – all the way across the Angeles National Forest.

23 months into this game and not ready to stop.

Playing the Endgame, Everywhere


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I was watching the Super Bowl, and not amused by the commercials.   And then something really dumb, but attention catching came on :

Which reminded me that I hadn’t played World of Tanks in – I dunno, years – so I loaded it up and found myself involved in no less than four games now, at the “Endgame”.


I am currently dialing it back from Ingress a bit.    No big operations being planned – it’s all I can do to get out to slightly out-of-the-way portals for various reasons.    I am working towards platinum Mind Controller badge – only 1,400 more fields until I earn that one – especially since this badge is perfect for anyone microfielding the Downtown Burbank area.   I crossed the 50 million AP threshhold this weekend.


With a level 21 town halfway completed, and working on late game knowledge, this game creeps along.    Creeps is the right word.   I recently started a knowledge upgrade that had 27 weeks on the clock at the beginning.    You can wait for that time to pass, or you can use the time boosters that you acquire in various methods.   I burned all of them up, and am currently waiting to tick down the 10 weeks remaining for this one.   And then start another one nearly exactly the same.

Marvel Heroes

Nerfs to Story XP are annoying, but not nearly as annoying as the impossible Cosmic Trial.    Still can’t pass it with Captain America.    Of course I have the Cosmic modes unlocked with him anyway, but I’m not playing Cosmic Patrols until I can pass the Trial.   I so miss the old Cosmic Trial, which you could pass after gaining enough power.    Probably the only thing more annoying than that, is most players insistence that the trial is “Easy”.

42 heroes unlocked and finishing the story, alphabetically.   Human Torch is my hero today.    And the story grinding continues to move me forward with Infinity points, although the creeping upwards of XP requirements is getting bad – about 290 million for the next point.

World of Tanks

The game has a new Intro movie which is pretty well done –

Standard with the game now is two rows of tanks, not just one, along with view range circles and a drawable minimap.   You can sketch out what you want your teammates to do.   Chat with the enemy is gone, leaving your teammates only able to rage at how stupidly you play, which they do – the socially inept will lash out at anything.   I miss enemy chat.

Random platoons during gameplay is constant, giving you the chance to actually pass these missions that require platooning.    I’m getting in the habit of always being in a platoon due to the personal reserves that I’m earning for the privilege, plus the chance to knock out some of those tank missions.

The XVM mod is still going strong and has tweaked the statistics in the garage very nicely –


Left side – a Tier indicator, along with the laurel leaves that tell you if the tank is elited or not.

Highest level of mastery earned.

Average damage.

Right side – Did you get your daily double/triple/quintuple ?

Count of battles played.

Win rate in %

Despite my earlier statements that I was done adding tanks to my account, I reneged, and bought a bunch of additional slots along with more tanks on sale.    There’s no reason not to spend that gold I bought years ago.    Now waiting for a crew training sale to add a 100% crew to my Tier VIII German arty that I bought.

And so I grind along in the game with the usual goals – padding my battle counts, earning silver, creeping crew training along, and earning mastery badges.    Ace tanker is elusive, often.   With over 100 battles I still can’t earn it for the Medium Mk II, a tier II pig tank that I had figured I could get it with **someday**.   I gave up, and am moving along a list of low tier tanks until I actually have some silver again.

Silver is elusive if you collect tanks and mods constantly.   I am beginning to wonder if the smart thing to do is simply take equipment off tanks I’m not currently running (costs 10 gold each time) and add it to the ones that I am.   Probably makes a bit more sense than grinding to add it at 500k per piece typically.   And currently I’m trying to get another 700k silver so I have enough to buy yet another new tank.


It’s quiet around here !


The main game I am playing continues to be Ingress.    It’s more fun than ever, but it really is requiring some combination of deception and radio silence.   In other words, to post more, I have to be aware the Enlightened are reading this and plan accordingly.

I think I’m done with deception, and thus posting in general.   I’m not really a deceptive person, or find it fun.

I’ve posted several times about not wanting to be involved in big ops anymore, which is a huge ass lie.    I have been involved in multiple ops to cover the local areas (Burbank/Santa Clarita and beyond), and continue to be involved in these ops.    I’ve built a team and made the attempt to cover the entire Los Angeles County / Orange County – unsuccessful, but so close !    I’ve helped out on covering Southern California multiple times – even larger than City of LA.    And I’ve been an intel operator for several ops.     This stuff is a lot of fun !

First, you “meet” or get to know people from outside your general area of Ingressing.  Usually only from the Hangouts app, but still, you’re meeting people.   It takes all kinds, and that’s definitely true of Ingress players.    What everyone has in common is the desire to cover the world in Blue, and varying levels of ability to contribute to making that happen.   Everyone works together and makes it happen – or the attempt at least – and that social interaction is like nothing I’ve experienced before.

Everyone I’ve interacted with in PC-based MMO’s might as well have been characters in a game with an AI behind them.   I’ve never met them personally.    I very rarely meet Ingressers but when I do, it’s an interesting experience.    This game has really got staying power being located in the real world.    And 90% of that real world information is very privileged because it needs to stay secure, within the world of the faction or your locality, and not be shared with the opposition.

I have now reached the level where posting about operations is just very bad for security.   I do not want to name the lanes I’ve used to build fields, because that is very useful information for the enemy.   Even posting what I have above is useful, but I think I’m tired of existing in this “What can I post that will further deceive Enlightened while still being fun to write and interesting and sort of accurate ?”.      The number of things I CANNOT WRITE ABOUT is driving me nuts, to be honest.

That’s not why I write.   I write to document the gameplaying experience, and I’ve done an excellent job of that in Ingress.  I write to share the enthusiasm about the game – whatever it is – and expose the enjoyment of playing.    I do not write to further the very important goals of misdirecting the enemy, keeping them confused and in the dark, and advancing the goal of their defeat.

But something as simple as a meetup picture, saying “From L – R, here is player X, then Y, then Z….” is both part of the fun and opposition research.   I think I’m done pretending that aspect of the game doesn’t exist, but I’m also done with petty attempts at deception via blog.   For the record, I am not part of any opponent documentation ring and I would condemn them being built, either by Resistance or Enlightened, just as I condemn Guardian Hunting (futilely, since nearly every player I’ve ever talked to says they do it).

The blessing and the curse of playing Ingress at the highest level is it needs to be done silently.    Sort of.    In secure channels you can talk a lot, but even that is subject to “Is it really secure?”.    You start out thinking of this as a secret agent game.     Then you meet people and relax, and think of it as an unusual game yall play together.    And now I’ve reached the end and come back to the beginning.    You can bet, for sure, this is a secret agent game.

Farewell 2016


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The year is drawing to a close.    And gaming takes such a hold on my time that I don’t write that much.    There are a variety of reasons for this.

Vikings : War of Clans is not a game you can write a lot about.    I am back in, they did successfully recover my game for me.   Each building upgrade takes about a week, knowledge upgrades are similar, and I continue to pile up the resources (aka rss) for the clan.    Now, there is a new feature that’s been introduced called the Clan Stronghold, but until we manage to build it I don’t really know how it will work.

Ingress continues to be that amazing game that I’m grinding away at.    I have hit 2.1 million MU captured and inch towards the 4 million goal.    I’m pushing to move a lot of gold badges up to platinum, for linking and fielding, and building and destroying.   But that’s not something that keeps you going day to day, given that such badges would be the work of years in a best case.    It’s the strange community that you have with random strangers you meet, who become gaming friends through the game, just because you all picked blue.

Ingress really is amazing, in that it rewards a literally one-action-a-day playstyle – this helps the team, guaranteed – or a marathon of insane 16-to-24 hour a day blitzing.

But none of this is new, thus the lack of blogging.  I don’t have a lot to write about the game anymore.   I have quite literally covered it all – at least until I charter a helicopter to capture Mount Whitney or somesuch insane stunt.   After I take back the same portal for probably the 250th time, nobody wants to hear about it, and even more important I don’t want to write about it.

Marvel Heroes continues to get playtime when I need a break from the mobile insanity.   I think I have 37 heroes unlocked now.    Gameplay is roughly 1) Grinding new characters to 60 2) Grinding out prestige levels when I don’t have splinters to unlock more characters, 3) Working the achievement system.    Between all of these things I tend not to get bored.    I remain irritated by the overly difficult Cosmic Trial.   And I look forward to the “Big Update” which is “Coming Soon”, including a lot of balancing changes and perhaps an end to the Omega system.

Here’s to 2017 being a fantastic year of gaming.   2016 certainly has been.

“Clans” In Ingress



Guild drama is something that happens in online gaming.    It’s traditionally been in the Warcraft / Everquest model but it also applies in Ingress.

(As a sidenote, one other casualty of wiping my phone was Vikings : War of Clans.   Looks like whatever authentication/backup method they use – Google, most likely – it was never activated on my phone.   I have a support request in to them.   We’ll see if anything comes of it, because if not, I’m done.)

But Vikings has traditional clan drama.   There are a lot of shards/servers/worlds.    There is limited movement from one to another.    All the players are free agents.    And the guilds – “Clans” – are voluntary.    Want to switch clans ?   Go ahead.    It depends on your relationships with the other players.  But Ingress is very nontraditional.

The players are NOT free agents – the two teams are strictly defined.    It is just barely possible to switch teams, it’s comparable to a server transfer in Everquest2.    There are no shards – the game world is the world.

If you transfer between teams, there is a heavy penalty – you lose your level and start over again at level 1.    This is (normally) meant to keep you from switching, but for people who get bored at level 16, this is actually a draw.    The other penalty is your relationship with the community – all else being equal, nobody likes a turncoat.

The closest thing to a guild in Ingress is a hangout, but that’s imperfect too.   People belong to as many or as few as they want.   Non hangout players fit well with soloists in traditional MMOs.    But the guys who are in EVERY HANGOUT are just committed players.

The natural clan in Ingress is the “Your Town” hangout for your team.    Or an area you frequent for whatever reason (Work.   Travel.    Parent’s House.   Girlfriend’s house.   Etc.)

And Hangouts contain drama.    One early hangout I joined fell apart because of the ridiculous behavior of three agents – all of whom, strangely enough, have since quit.   Now I’m seeing it again in a new hangout.    This is comparable to the drama with Vikings guilds I have been in GSO and Assassin’s Hellgate – different people just create drama and make everything less fun.

I wonder if this is a natural reaction to a team’s dominance in an area, plus the actual participants.    The jerks create drama and make things fall apart.   If you get enough of them they wreck everything and the dominance subsides.

With the small size of most hangouts (there’s usually 5 – 10 participants that say anything, several others that occasionally contribute, a few silent ones, and always people who have since left the game) that helps to limit drama.   This is supposed to be about supporting each other in the game, not hooking up or proving your dominance, but some people don’t get it.

And yet – because the real world is layered on here – I feel pretty close to some of the other players.   I’ve met several multiple times.    I consider them friends.   I talk to them often – usually in spurts depending on what plan me or someone is cooking up.   I have never felt close enough in Everquest2 etc to feel like a clanmate is a friend.

It’s an interesting and exciting experience.    Where will the “Hangout Clans” lead us in the future ?

(By the way – the fielding we had planned was successful over the Santa Clarita Valley.   Yay !)


The ULTIMATE portal defense system ! (?)


I go out and try to kill a portal.    Turns out, it is remote enough that the service is available before it, and after it, but not directly AT the portal.   At least on Verizon.

I’m annoyed.   I want to kill this thing.    But nothing is cooperating about this portal.    It is on the side of the road with no good pedestrian access; as I walked to it cars come swooping up from the south and are far too close to me.    They can’t see me either, so I jump to the side of the road as much as possible.   But the side of the road is a little 45 degree angled hillock, and you can’t walk on it.   At least not in tennis shoes.

It’s a cross on the side of the road.    Well – it was at some point.    Right now there is nothing at all there.    A flat area on the side of the highway provides a place to stand, and I pace back and forth for 15 minutes praying to the Holy Gods of Signal, that I get enough reception to fire the ADA.    A brief 1X flashes, but Ingress still does not respond.

The wind is blowing really hard.    REALLY hard.   I get knocked around by the wind and dirt and grit smash into my face.   This place is very dangerous, actually.    There is a chance I could get blown off balance by a gust of wind and quite literally fall off the mountain.   Time to get back to the car.

There’s a ranger station by the side of the road, so I ask one of the rangers stocking his vehicle up.    “Which cell phone service works good out here ?”    He doesn’t know.

So I decide that I have service on both sides of the portal, but not actually at it.   Can I start firing the ADA, and drive past, and kill the thing successfully ?   Maybe.   It might work.

I drive past, hit the confirm button, pretty nervous about hitting other vehicles along this fairly busy road.    I have my phone outside of the car and am driving with one hand through the open window – you get better signal that way.

When I reach the other side of the portal, my phone shows an android character and says “Deleting all data”.

AUGGGGHHHH !   What has just happened ?

My best guess is that Ingress and the bad signal did not play nice with the Android OS, causing a reboot.   You can make an emergency boot somehow, by hitting the buttons on the side of the phone, and one option is to factory reset the phone.    I must have hit the button without seeing it.

So the portal still stands.     I am pissed off enough to be considering the purchase of boosters and BGANs.   Considering that boosters are $100 items that’s not too bad, but I think BGANs are $2,000+ items with data costs through the roof.    Yikes.

Now I need to get my phone working again.   Ingress works, at least, after reinstallation.    Lots of other things still need tweaking.

And the joke is, I wonder what mod that agent put on his portal to cause MY PHONE TO FACTORY RESET ! ?

Key Rules Are Changing


As per Niantic post (in typically cryptic fashion), we now have permanent increased key hack output.

During the anniversary event, as anyone actively playing Ingress knows, all AP was increased 2x until 11:59 on December 1st.   I could care less for me.   But the event also included extra keys being hacked.

Up until now, hacking a portal would yield a key, provided you did not already have a key in your possession – about 75% of the time.    And you could glyph hack, using the MORE glyph, to receive a chance at a key even if you were holding one, subject to the 75% rule still.   But you never got more than one key, unless using the Fracker tool.

No more.    For the past several days I have gotten between 1 -3 keys from use of a MORE glyph.    As a micro fielder, I love it.   I may finally reach the point where I stop hoarding keys permanently, if I can potentially get 12 keys in 15 minutes from 4 hacks.

Currently I keep my key inventory at : 500 keys loaded in key capsules.  95 keys in an MUFG, duplicating madly.   One key in inventory for everything over 500.    And for Downtown Burbank, all keys sit in inventory and get destroyed if I have too many.    The idea of having, say, 50 keys in inventory and not carrying all those DTB keys sounds pretty good, more room for …… something.   Not sure what, actually.

Perhaps more souvenir keys.   I currently hold these keys as souvenirs :

  • The Disney Water Tower in Burbank.   I never thought I’d get to touch it, but I did, thanks to Ingress.
  • A piece of the Berlin Wall, from the Reagan Library.
  • The SR-71 at Exposition Park, near USC.
  • The Golden Princess portal.   This one is hilarious.   The submitter gave one that can only be reached, as a pedestrian, if you’re on a cruise ship.    I suppose you could take a little skiff out in the water if no ship was there.   “Spoofers and Passengers only”.
  • The Granville Gateway to Granville Island, Vancouver.
  • Omnia Ab Uno, New Orleans Cemetery.   This is the tomb purchased by Nicholas Cage for him and his family’s future burial.   It’s Latin for “From one, many” which annoys me being the opposite of “E Pluribus Unum”.
  • The Steak House in Euro Disneyland.    Someone dropped this at the Burbank Mall.


The New Game


After having hit Level 16, my Ingress gameplay is a bit different now.   It’s a bit of a new game.

I have all the AP I’ll ever need.    It’s more about badges now – and boy, are there a lot of badges if you’d like to make them all Onyx.    My recent trip to New Orleans netted around 900 unique taps, with the Bay Area just pushing me over 4,000.   I still am not quite halfway to platinum for either unique badge, and I’m stuck in Gold medal land on most stuff.

Illuminator, Onyx that is, I’d like to get.    After the op I am at the halfway point, 2 million MU scored.    I should probably plan a BAF but they never seem to go very well.    So I peck away at this one, mostly in the SCV area.

Burbank, the MU is just so low.   I overfielded the entire Downtown Burbank area one time as a strategic move and calculated we are fighting over 600 MU.   Big points eh ?    Then again, anyone wanting onyx fielding and linking should get in and mix it up down there.   Plenty of +1 MU fields available.

I am also trying to help our lower level agents grow.    I tried to get my buddies playing, but it looks like they’ll only play when I’m around.   Yall in the SCV area (or Burbank) can always ask for stuff.   The problem with giving away gear is, I am generally always 100% full with gear.   So is everyone you try to give gear to.   Not to mention trying to get me anywhere to give the gear away.    But with that said, it’s always a good idea to try.

So badges and agents are now the draw.   And the daily grind.    I hit about 7 portals on a daily basis, maybe 100 weekly, and you never know where you’re going to end up any particular day.   Doing Beergress and meetups are fun, and I’m doing more of that.   There are a few of you I owe beers to once I finally run into ya.

And I spend time on the Intel map looking at interesting things.   It’s really weird that I’m playing a game that teaches me about places in the USA.    Did you know about the New Idria ghost town ?    3 portals there.    I look at places where we’re going camping for interesting portals.   And any downtown area is a place to wander, and gather uniques.

And wait until the portal approval system comes online.   Level 16 has at least that as a perk.