Game Review: Ingress by Niantic Labs


If you’ve been anywhere online, you may have heard of a new craze called Ingress. So what is it? Ingress is an Augmented reality game where you turn real life into a real life struggle for humanity.

It’s still in Beta at the moment, and you have to ask for an invite which you ask for through their website. It does take a little time to get the invite, so bear with them. As you can imagine, they are very busy at the moment. Once you get your email, it has a code which you need to load onto the app which you download from the Play Store.

When you load it, it will start loading and find your location.

Once it finds your location, you will be run through the training missions. You start by learning to pick up XM. XM or Exotic Matter is those little blue glowing dots you see on your screen. Walk towards it and it will gravitate towards you. The more you pick up, the more ‘fuel’ you have. You can pick up your XM where ever you are.

Your next training mission is to hack a portal. A portal is where the XM comes through. By hacking them, you help close them and stop the Enlightenment attack you.

Hack a portal to close them.

You will find portals around your area and you need to close them, or the enlightenment will use them to attack you.

Some time during your training, you will receive a message from the enlightenment. The enlightenment is a separate faction which want to spread the use of XM. The Resistance  on the other hand, want to stop the spread. You get to choose, one way or another, which you choose. I am yet to determine the benefit one way or another, but either way, once you have chosen, your mission is to stop or spread the use of XM.

You can use the in-built chat feature to talk to local resistance or enlightenment and swap locations of portals ect. There are also features to look at your  stats and how well you are doing. Be mindful that this is a Beta, so if you come across any faults/bugs, you need to report them to the developer (done either in app, of via email). I have had the app crash on me a couple of times, but this sends a crash report to the developer via the Play Store.

The one problem I’ve had with this game is, being disabled and chair ridden, I haven’t been able to get out and test it to its full potential (So my apologies for the delay in this review). So if you are disabled, bear in mind that you will need to get out and about to collect XM and use Portals. This is also not suitable for tablets without 3G, as the app will download periodic updates from the servers with regards as to XM reserves, Portals etc.

Otherwise, I strongly recommend that you ask for an invite and save the world.

Ingress is available (after you have received an invite) from the Play store.