Ingress AMA Archive

September 4th 2017

Q1: What smells like shoe polish?
A1: Dante Hicks
Q2: There are players who greatly care about the look of badges and a clean profile. What do you think of an option to sort/hide badges?
A2: This has been asked and answered before but since it received a lot of +1s I'm happy to answer it again. I personally think an option to sort, hide, and a reorganization of the badge screen in general is warranted. I will continue to advocate for this.
Q3: Did the new anomaly ruleset last play out the way NIA intended/hoped?
A3: In talking to the Game Masters I think they are pretty happy with the way things played out. They are reading all the feedback and there will be some tweaks for Q4. But by and large I think we are getting close to a format that I feel could be very competitive and leverage the best of Ingress.
Q4: Hi Andrew, here are some ideas for (maybe) improving the game a bit, would you like to share your opinion? 1. Link with keys from purchased lockers. 2. Sell a one-time purchase pack for more inventory space. 3. Implementing a legit bank-like option would discourage multi-accounters.
A4: 1. Personally, I don't like this idea. I believe key lockers should be key lockers. Not capsules on steroids. I'd be ok with being able to link from capsules. But as I understand it, key lockers were born out of the request that players wanted something to memorialize locations and keys without it costing against inventory. Essentially making it a non-playable item. 2. I like this idea. I'm sure the folks in charge of Ingress have considered this. There may be some things that need to be researched though. If anyone remembers the early days when you had unlimited inventory, bad things like app crashes, could occur if you had a lot of inventory or too many keys for example. 3. Inventory management is a game mechanic I like. I think if the inventory cap was kept in place but there was a way to create guilds and therefore a shared bank then it would be an interesting idea. I don't think personal banks would be a good idea though because it takes the inventory management aspect out of the game. Even if the "bank" was limited itself. But a shared bank with limited inventory would mitigate a lot of fears I have that a personal bank brings.
Q5: Is there any way we (European agents) could help to make an event like Camp Navarro happen here in Europe? (suggesting places for example)
A5: We have, on several occasions, done things because the players showed the initiative and desire. If someone were to identify a location, rally participation, and basically create a plan that shows it is feasible - I don't think we would say no and we would try to figure out how to make is happen. We haven't done anything to date for a number of reasons. One of them being the perceived interest not being high enough in Europe.
Q6: Like every Monday... What's the status on OPR? When will portal submissions come back?
A6: Because yesterday was a Holiday and people are still not back in the office yet, I am unable to provide an update this week.
Q7: Can you post the lasagna recipe you mentioned in another AMA?
A7: It wouldn't be a special dish if everyone was able to make it.
Q8: After the Network-Issues at Camp Nevarra (Magnus Reawakens) and Chicago (Pokemon GO-Fest) has the partnership / communication between Niantic and Internet-Service-Providers started/increased?
A8: We recently held an event in Japan and worked very closely with the telecom providers there who provided COWs (Cell On Wheels) which are mobile cell towers. By all reports, there were little to no issues that I am aware of. Camp Navarro is a bit of a different situation. It was a location with no cell signal so we worked with the Camp to expand their wifi capabilities. I'm sure the next Camp Navarro will be a better experience.
Q9: In Navarra a registration Portal as a means of checking in was introduced (at least to my knowledge). Would you say that this method so far has shown to be successful? Would you mind sharing the vision behind this change to the QR-code-Scans from before?
A9: Yes. This method has proved to be very successful. It allowed us to push out On-Site participation badges faster than we have every before after an Anomaly event. There were zero typos and errors as well.
Q10: When will portal submissions be opened for the moon?
A10: My guardian on Tranquility base was discovered this weekend via eagle eyed posters on http://Reddit.com/r/...
Q11: Can we expect portal submissions to come back this week?
A11: Not this week. There is one final step in the release process we are trying to work through at the moment. But once that is complete, submissions will be back.
Q12: Are you guys waiting for a complete clearance of the queue in OPR before opening back the submissions?
A12: No.
Q13: When NL-1331 in South America?
A13: I don't know. One of the issues is that South America is huge. It is pretty simple to drive around Europe and cross borders. The same cannot be said about South America when hauling commercial items for sale. There are also some governmental and stability concerns in specific regions. We'd really have to think through the logistics a lot to have a successful South America tour.
Q14: I've read about users faking browser location services for review purposes in OPR. Your thoughts?
A14: Please don't.
Q15: When will players with new accounts/everyone get the chance to get some mufg-style capsules again?
A15: Soon (tm).
Q16: How quickly into 2.0 will new features be released?!
A16: I think once things are stable and there is feature parity with 1.0. That could happen very quickly. It could take a few months. I believe there will be some new features at launch. Previously, I didn't think this was the case... it might also be too ambitious and not occur. But what I've seen is very cool and should come shortly on the heels of stability and parity if not before.
Q17: The Magnus has been destroyed but in Navarro there was an rpe where the Patron (+John Hanke​​​) said a new Magnus would form. If you were to make a new Magnus, who would you put in it? Also it doesn't have to be a serious one, you can get as funny or serious as you would like.
A17: Ohhhh good question. Hrmm... My MAGNUS would be 1. John Hanke 2. Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson 3. Bob Ross 4. Elon Musk 4. Benjamin Franklin 5. Jason Perkins (the head brewmaster of Allagash Brewery) 6. Aristotle 7. Leonardo da Vinci 8. Galileo Galilei 9. Mark Twain 10. Chris Cornell 11. Dave Grohl 12. Stevie Ray Vaughan 13. Myself
Q18: Is it in the realm of possibility that CMU purchased items to not count towards the Inventory cap of 2,000 items?
A18: Yes. Anything is possible.
Q19: Will Ingress 2.0 support multitasking/split screening on iPad and Android?
A19: I have no idea.
Q20: I like to plan and take days off from work...will there be anomalies in Q1? Also..who is going to win NFL?
A20: I haven't heard that there won't be Anomalies in Q1 2018. Let's be realistic, always bet on the Patriots. Even if they aren't my favorite team.
Q21: If you were traveling to an Anomaly, which songs would you include in your playlist for the trip?
A21: Audioslave: I Am The Highway - Clutch: Electric Worry - Spiderbait: Black Betty - Marty Casey: Trees - AWOLNATION: Sail - Travis Tritt: It's A Great Day To Believe Alive - Bubbles: Bidibodi Bidbu - DJ Kaled: All I Do Is Win - Trampled By Turtles: Wait So Long - Metallica: Whiskey In The Jar - Maren Morris: My Church. Anything by Stevie Ray Vaugh, P!nk, The Beatles, RUN DMC, Louis Armstrong... I dunno I just love all music. Making a list is hard.
Q22: I heard that a agent just hacked the register portal and got the 13Magnus badge, without rsvp. Is that ture?
A22: Shouldn't have been possible.
Q23: How is niantic choosing anomaly sites, and how can a player propose a city the right way (or is it not possible)?
A23: Part one: It's largely done by a committee of the events/marketing team weighing a bunch of inputs. Their recommendations are reviewed by multiple people outside the team. Feedback is taken, given, and changes implemented. Part two: There really isn't a way to propose a city officially. But as the global community manager, I will gladly advocate for a city if there is enough interest that warrants it.
Q24: Wouldn't it be awesome to have a "hide completed missions" checkbox in the mission overview?
A24: Yes. Yes it would.
Q25: What's the status of the MUFG or it's replacement??
A25: I've only heard rumors around the tech being acquired
Q26: Could you send someone down to the appeals community as it seems a little unloved, for a very, very long time now?
A26: I'll talk to NIA OPS again about this.
Q27: Could you promote a gimmick share in G+ with different hashtags; #hackoftheday, #newmedal, #oddportal, #crossedlinks, #coolportal, #myfirstportal, #droppeditemart, etc., .... stuff to get people sharing random stuff, together?
A27: I like this idea.
Q28: do transmuters rebalance the hack output whilst keeping the returned items the same, or do they rebalance the output AND increase the hack output?
A28: Sounds like a great test for someone to perform.
Q29: Could you run #OpClearField at Berlin anomaly? 250 agents have expressed interest.
A29: I can't make any promises but I'll bring it up and see what can be done.
Q30: What is your opinion of portals which are located on tiny, uninhabited islets in the ocean, accessible only by private boats*?
A30: These sort of questions are very very subjective and a general answer is always dangerous to give because of that. With that said, in general, this doesn't seem like a violation of the portal guidelines or TOS so I support them.
Q31: Last year I heard rumors about false-positive bans for Xiaomi phones users. Ist it true that Xiaomi phones are dangerous to play or it is just ingress urban legend?
A31: I know lots of people that play using Xiaomi phones. False positives can happen regardless of a specific device. However, they happen very very infrequent. Especially compared to the amount of bans. Anecdotally, it seems to be a faction of one percent.
Q32: all over the country Agents report the local OPR queue (NR02-HOTEL-01 and surrounding cells) is empty yet I still have 9 submissions that haven't been approved nor declined. How is that possible?
A32: I have no idea. I'll try to ask around and see what I can find out.
Q33: So many questions... How about, good morning +Andrew Krug​ how are you?
A33: Excellent!!! Thanks for asking!
Q34: How do you drink your tea?
A34: Depends on the tea.
Q35: Will there be double ap weeks this year? If yes, when?
A35: We can't give away all our secrets.
Q36: Hi Andrew, Your captain from Amsterdam speaking here. ⛵ 😊 Is XF beergress with p8 & frackers wintrading or/and against TOS?
A36: To answer this question we have to define what beergress is. In my area, it is getting a group together (cross-faction or not) to attend a bar/pub/restaurant and to play Ingress as a group either before, during, or after. Nothing is coordinated in terms of game play and there are zero expectations... that's a key point in defining wintrading. If I use a Fracker on a portal that is a P8, an Agent from the opposite team can knock it down. If they choose to not do so, that is their choice. There is no rule mandating the capture of portals. However, if a treaty was all arranged in advance to prohibit people from taking certain actions that are not prohibited by the official rules - yes that would be wintrading. Bottom line: Just let things happen organically and have fun. Also, don't be upset if someone does something that is within the rules and game mechanics.
Q37: My question is do you think the issues resulting in Schrodinger's target could be related to #ViaObscura?
A37: No I do not.
Q38: To the things happened in Sczeczin... Many agents made a lot effort to farm needed inventory. I would suggest that the agents (on site and in a team) get some refund or compensation.
A38: To be fair, the only points in contention regarding Szczecin was the scoring of a single shard on a single target portal. All of the other actions of the day were valid. The entire day is not voided because of what happened. The actions of the day enabled a tie to occur because of how Agents played throughout the entire day. If anyone were to be reimbursed, it would be people who used resources to score or defend the Schrodinger portal during P2 only. No other actions would be eligible as their actions were valid and did impact the outcome of the game. How does one determine who would be eligible? I have no idea.
Q39: Dear Andrew you are asked a lot of questions ... Does your team analyze all the issues?
A39: These AMA's have become quite popular internally. So yes, what is said is read and evaluated by a number of people.
Q40: Did you ever create own missions in Ingress?
A40: Yes. I was one of the early beta testers for the mission creator tool and have some of the oldest missions in the game.
Q41: My question is if that's possible we could know how many people were EXACTLY check-in on Macau Anomaly.
A41: We don't provide numbers publicly. But I can say that 82% of those who registered showed up and checked in.
Q42: We are seeing more orphaned missions - the creators no longer play or accounts are gone - what can be done about orphaned missions that can no longer be completed?
A42: I'll talk with NIA OPS and see if maybe we can add this to the help center forms somewhere.
Q43: is ethan a shaper?
A43: No. But we are unsure if he is human do to the amount of caffeine he consumes.
Q44: Hi Andrew, I was going through the events page and was wondering why there isn't a calendar feed for these.
A44: That's a really good idea. Let me see what I can do.
Q45: Dear Andrew, why is there a badge for how many missiondays you attended, but not for how many anomalys you have intended? (on site, preferably)?
A45: Great question. I'll bring this up.
Q46: When can we expect a decision to be made regarding the anomaly in Houston given the current situation there?
A46: Great question! We are in touch with the Houston POCs for Q4 and are monitoring the cleanup efforts. Any decision will definitely not be without the POCs input. When? I don't know that we can provide an exact date because things change every day there.
Q47: When will there be portals on the moon, under the sea and in space?
A47: There are already portals under the sea.
Q48: You proposed three different ways for agents to get more involved in the game: 1. Ambassador program 2. Second Chance program 3. To be involved in the progress of bringing new glyphs into the scanner.
A48: Stay tuned for news on #1 this week.
Q49: Some people get in trouble when some new mechanisms are implemented to improve cheating detection... Couldn't we think in build a kind of more close talking, or even "beta testing" team of agents that can help on the tests of this mechanisms, with enough varity of devices to avoid those troubles?
A49: I'm not sure that a group of players dedicated to cheating is really the answer.
Q50: Ian Collier How much of "The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly Of Ingress" do you think has been improved in the intervening years?
A50: Fantastic question. I had to go back and read it to identify some of the specific issues. Let's focus on the bad and the ugly since the good was good to begin with. 1. I think amount of complaining has largely decreased. There is definitely a different tone today compared to four years ago among the player base. 2. The software is no longer tagged as beta. 3. There hasn't been a rollback in a very very long time. 4. The storyline is more organized via tools like http://investigate.i... and we also have regained trust in the narrator. Things are also more plausible but no longer illogical. 5. The game's mechanics have really improved. Mainly I'm referring to quality of life improvements like mass deletion, capsules, not being so dependant on the carousel, long press interactions, etc. 6. The UI will be blown away with 2.0 so... 7. Enforcement of the TOS and community guidelines has greatly improved. I don't even think we are in the same universe as how things were in 2013. 8. Spoofing is still an issue but no where near the levels of the past years. The most recent Anomaly was a telling example of the progress with us having no reported issues the day of the events. 9. Portal submissions... Well we have OPR. That's a huuuuge step forward. 10. Although the ENL claim Niantic favors the RES and the RES claim that Niantic favors the ENL - largely, the issues of years gone by are no longer present. In conclusion, a LOT has improved.
Q51: Hi Andrew. What do you like more, chicken or pork?
A51: Pork. It gave us the candy bar of meats - bacon!
Q52: Hello Andrew, we want to see you in Ukraine for the sake of communication, do you plan to fly here?
A52: I currently have no plans to visit the Ukraine. However, that doesn't mean I won't. I would love to. I just don't know when.
Q53: What should be included with a support ticket for suspected spoofing and multi-accounting to make life easier for everyone who has to handle them?
A53: Too many Agents think they need to have evidence and 100% proof before they report someone. That isn't needed. Think of the ticketing system as you, raising your hand, and saying, "I think there is something worth researching with this account."
Q54: Will you keep up the current frequency of #AMA for the near future?
A54: For the near future, yes. Once the amount or quality of the questions starts to degrade I might change things up.
Q55: we have an agent that haven't receive the Anomaly Badge for Basel, he was there, what can we do for him? I don't know why it doesn't work for him
A55: Have them contact their POC. We have a process to research and fix things like this.
Q56: Hi, Andrew! What is the difference between these two Resistance logos? If the key with a "diamond" is official logo, then what is the history of key with the "circle"?
A56: According to the Brand and Community Guidelines the only key listed is the one with the diamond.
Q57: Good morning! It's 6:24 in the morning in Japan. Do you like sushi? If yes, what kind of sushi do you like best? And your coffee always looks good. What's your favorite beans, blend or strength? What do you like to eat them? Doughnut?
A57: Yes I like sushi. Anything that isn't eel or urchin I think I am ok with. I'm a medium roast coffee lover and enjoy many different beans and blends. I don't have a single favorite.
Q58: Could you tell me the approximate date when the series name of Q4 XM Anomaly will be announced?
A58: Approximately after or at the end of the Q3 events.
Q59: Do you sell hubcaps for a 72 Pinto hatchback?
A59: Ooh, Mini-trucker magazine!
Q60: Do you think an AP penalty for same-faction virus use, perhaps 10k AP/level of the user, might be an interesting change to the game?
A60: It is certainly an interesting idea. I'd need to give it more thought before I weigh in on it more though.
Q61: Hi thanks for answering my question last week. Thinking guardian portal wise as an example, what is your opinion on a very rare hackable anti Ada / Jarvis shield? One that blows up if an Ada or Jarvis is used and the attacker has to wait 60 min to attack with an Ada or Jarvis again.
A61: Another interesting idea.
Q62: Andrew Krug want a latte machiato ? :-)
A62: I'm more of a Flat White kind of guy. I don't want all that sugar and stuff in my coffee.
Q63: Hi Andrew! Ingress Nex Band....any updates??? Thanks 🙂
A63: I've tried to get an answer but have not been successful. I wouldn't hold out hope.
Q64: As a followup to last week's question, does your beard have any color left?
A64: Too many colors. White, brown, blonde, reddish, and black.
Q65: What's you opinion on that scanner features: 1) Speedban indicator, or even a full functioning geodata HUD, showing actual speed, coordinates, altitude and sattellite signal levels. 2) Ability to hide alerts in comm's main section of both scanner and intel. 3) Logging of acquired stuff or an ability to rewind stuff drop messages.
A65: 1) If it was designed correctly, I think geodata hud could be interesting. 2) I think we need to split out alerts into their own tab. 3) Love it.
Q66: Hi andrew, what do you think about ingress coming out with more new game mechanic like crafting of higher weapons?
A66: I love the idea. Even destroying higher level items to create low level ones. This has been talked about. I'm not sure where it lands on the feature priority list. But hopefully it is on it.
Q67: A question from my son: how many portals are there in total?
A67: I wish I could provide an answer. I don't know how many there are though.
Q68: When r u coming to Maldives ?
A68: When are you going to invite me?
Q69: I've been playing ingress for a few years now and I got bored since a few years. I didn't even touch my scanner for some time in the past and so did/do many other agents around the world. Can you please give me/us a few reasons why I should keep playing ingress?
A69: Ingress is about more than the application on your phone. Ingress enables all sorts of experiences to be had. It is one of those rare things that will provide you with however much you want to get out of it. Not knowing how you play and socialize it is hard for me to give you one or two answers that might get you excited personally.
Q70: What was your Labor Day Meal?
A70: We had Philly cheesesteaks, corn on the cob, salad and chocolate cake.
Q71: buying a 2nd hand phone from another agent and using it for ingress. Would logging in from that phone trigger any flags with niantic?
A71: I suppose it depends on what the first Agent did with that device.