Ingress AMA Archive

Any clarifications regarding portal/wayspot criteria is outdated.
Please refer to the official Wayfarer criteria for all current criteria

November 27th 2017

Q1: Has that floppy disk been decoded yet?
A1: We are getting close.
Q2: Any news on Ingress 2.0?
A2: Soon.
Q3: What is the current status of the Guardian Badge rework?
A3: There has been a lot of internal discussions about either replacing it outright or retiring it and then replacing it at a later date. The final path forward has not be decided yet.
Q4: Topical question for you this week, With the EX05 Intel drops going on end of this week, Will +NIA Ops be keeping an eye out encase someone is a party popper with a set of spoofers?
A4: Yes. But the best eyes and ears are the players. If you see something, say something.
Q5: Can we get the next year anomalies (at least first ones) announced when exo5 series final result announced? Pretty pleeeeease😍
A5: I think this is a good idea ;)
Q6: Have safeguards been put into place to prevent the same portals from being both a RES & ENL research node for the upcoming anomalies in the various cities?
A6: Yes.
Q7: Hi Andrew. Any update on Portal Edits in OPR and the souvenir key capsule?
A7: I wish I had an update for you, but I do not.
Q8: Any chance of getting double ap extended?
A8: No. This celebration of our 5 year anniversary is only temporary.
Q9: Have you listened to +Kim N​ sing about Ingress?
A9: Yes I think her voice is amazing!
Q10: Will agents who are still waiting on news of our Belfast or Zagreb packs hear anything in the two weeks before your next AMA?
A10: I really hope so. As I understand it, things are still stuck in customs.
Q11: What would you do with a shard but without a target?
A11: I would test out multiple things and see what the behavior is. Maybe it's just a symbol. Maybe there is more to it. There is only one way to find out.
Q12: What's the classiest drink you've ever sipped from a red plastic cup?
A12: All drinks are classy being sipped from a red plastic cup.
Q13: Will Ingress 2.0 have any improvements for the visually impaired?
A13: I would interpret it as Niantic being very careful about setting precedent for Ingress and all future games. Not just ours but in this genre that we are defining. This situation is not over yet.
Q14: How did you prepare your turkey last week?
A14: We made a feast at home that included mashed potatoes, cooked carrots, stuffing, brussel sprouts with bacon, deviled eggs, stuffed mushrooms... then we went to Popeye's and picked up our Turkey that we ordered.
Q15: Can we get some more NIA OPS attention to the Portal Appeals community?
A15: I'll pass this along to NIA OPS.
Q16: Will there be more events with changed game mechanics? I mean like now, when we can put extra mods and resonators into a portal.
A16: Anything is possible.
Q17: Why is there such a skew in the number of character cards in anomaly packs in the US compared to Asia/Europe?
A17: I think it is about the experience. If you look at the history of character cards and Anomalies, it used to be that in order to get one you had to meet the character in person. If that is the guiding principle, I don't think it would be fair to those Agents attending in San Francisco if the same cards could be bought in other cities. We could offer them. But then it dilutes the experience and value in my opinion.
Q18: Could you please inform us when double AP ends? As in what time of day on 29th? This will be good for planning... Knowing how much time we have left to try to reach our goals. Thank you brother!
A18: I'll have to check on this. Although I may not get an answer before it is too late.
Q19: In a recent AMA, you said that Niantic has more actions to take regarding scraping and the Riot tool. If you can't comment on specifics, can you provide a time frame for expecting this, since people are normalizing the tool due to no consequences?
A19: Soon. I would also caution that just because a person hasn't heard of any consequences that none have been taken or are being planned to be taken.
Q20: It was reported that you told Vanguards 2.0 will be ready by Q2 anomaly. Will you officially confirm this for us?
A20: Hahaha - nice try. Nothing like that was ever said.
Q21: Hola! There was recently a portal reset by NIAGameMaster in Greenwich, CT. - Ingress - Game Reality This portal was reset but the mods were not added back. Is there a reason that no mods are added back to portals when they're reset? Thanks!
A21: At this time, we don't have the ability to reset mods.
Q22: Are there blackout areas where portals won't be accepted even with the requisite upvotes?
A22: I honestly have no idea.
Q23: A fellow agent informed me that they had bought a couple of individual key lockers, but now the individual lockers are no longer available on the store, and of course they aren't allowed to buy the pack. (Having bought all of mine already, I couldn't verify, but I trust their skills of observation). Any solution coming for agents who want to complete their key locker collection?
A23: Individual key lockers will be able to be purchased once the Anniversary event has ended.
Q24: Unanswered from last round - in order to aid iOS users in keeping up with android users, could a "Done/Back" button be added on both platforms during link/field animations to bypass the animation and get back to business?
A24: Could it? I am not sure. I have to assume (which is always bad) that there is a logical reason for not including it.
Q25: Is there a turkey version of the lasagna recipe? Asking for a friend.
A25: There is. But it is my brother's recipe. What you really want though is my mother's stuffed mushrooms. I'm allergic to them but everyone raves about them.
Q26: Could and would it be possible to delete mission badges from scanner? For example old incomplete, now offline banner missions
A26: Could it? I'm sure it could be. Will it? I have no idea.
Q27: if you have a "special" catchphrase with which you get people to start playing Ingress, which is it? :D i bet it's not "gotta hack'em all" while you throw your phone at them, though.
A27: Depending on their age the one that always works is, "It's like the board game Risk only in real life. So to take over Australia you have to go to Australia." That always gets Ohhhhhs and Ahhhhs
Q28: Would you agree that there are positions at NIA where, in order to have at least a semblance of impartiality, the person in the role should not have an active ingress account.
A28: I would disagree. It is very important to play your own products to better understand situations and positions that are being brought forth. You can be impartial and have an active account. I think I've been successful in doing just that. If someone disagrees I welcome the opportunity to grow and learn about how something is being perceived incorrectly and they should contact me.
Q29: A few weeks back, you verified (in the AMA) that portals that are in secure company grounds with employee only access are considered to have some public access...... so are valid locations, assuming the portal meets the rest of the criteria requirements. Since then, we are seeing numerous take-downs of those very types of portals; because people are claiming lack of access. So that we don't have some kind of false precedent being set, can we get a clear, consistent and official statement on portals inside company grounds and perhaps some insight as to why there is inconsistencies in the examples on the linked post
A29: Don't mistake and equate the removal of a portal with it not being legit. It could have have been legit but someone in authority asked for it to be removed. Your first part of the question is correct. They are valid portals.
Q30: Any news on the rechargers for subsequent anomalies?
A30: Yes the tests of the new system to measure recharger participation were very successful. This means that there is a high likelihood that medals can be awarded for rechargers during future anomalies.
Q31: Recurring question each week, what is being done with backlog (limbo) portals? Several of us have submissions counting 63 days now so please help us understand why and no standard company answers plz
A31: I can only tell you what I know and that is the OPR team has said they are working on a solution for those portals.
Q32: How about some badgers for destruction related stats?
A32: I'll advocate for them.
Q33: Hey Andrew, I know last week was specifically dedicated to opr, but in this past week many friends of mine have encountered offensive pictures and portal descriptions while evaluating portals at opr, is there any plans to create a function to Report inappropriate submissions and even maybe with those reports take some action against those players submitting them?
A33: Great question. I don't know the answer to it.
Q34: Hi Andrew, any news about adding some additional packs to the upcoming anomalies?
A34: Unfortunately, the cities that are sold out are unlikely at this point to have any additional for sale. That said, always check at the registration desk towards the end of registration. We sometimes have some leftovers that we can sell.
Q35: I know, I've asked before, but is Karmagress a thing? (You hack what you use?)
A35: RNG. Nothing spookier than that going on.
Q36: How about some agent stats from Niantic? Who has the most KM walked? The most UPV, MU captured, missions completed? Someone there has to be number one! (they deserve a slice of lasagna)
A36: Great question. I've often thought that we should publish quarterly stats but the problem is one of consent.
Q37: Are there any chances to have more than 100 mission on mission-author-dot-b...
A37: At this time, I have not heard anything about increasing the limit.
Q38: Where can we fill a feature request for the devs? Or maybe you could pass it along. I would like to suggest making it possible to see who "+1'ed" portal photos in the scanner.
A38: I'll pass it along for you.
Q39: What’s your opinion on burster stacking?
A39: If you are intentionally manipulating your phone's connection to create a behavior in the scanner that is not natural and gives you an advantage that seems like it is against the spirit of the game and possibly the TOS.
Q40: I got your biocard today, thank you for that! How many trade offers did you get and has my card arrived yet?
A40: Hundreds. I still have a few I need to send out.
Q41: Considering most of the responses from the OPR team for last week's AMA were vague and unhelpful, do you plan to have more guests sit in on future AMA's help broaden our diversity of non-answers? Alternately, April 1st of 2019 is a Monday. Is this thread an overly elaborate April Fools joke, whereby on that day, you'll present your final reveal by giving us actual useful answers?
A41: Possibly. It depends. Soon. I don't know but I'll check on it.
Q42: What is your favourite type of Alcohol?
A42: Bourbon.
Q43: Will you allow the badge for rechargers this anomaly since you have it fixed?
A43: Not for December.
Q44: If you and Ethan and also any other Niantic Staff had the time and choice, which would you guys choose for blowing off steam and finding some fun in New Zealand? Outside of the Tui, Lion Red, Mac's Beer, BundaBerg, n’ Fish n’ Chips…
A44: I'm always for blowing off steam in fun and non-destructive, to my body, ways.
Q45: Can you comment on the MUFG capsule degradation/removal from the game?
A45: Research is still ongoing.
Q46: What's your idea on anomaly packs that contain only pushed character codes.
A46: I'm not a fan of that idea. I view character cards a bit like baseball cards. Meaning they are collectible and only available during a limited period.
Q47: What value do you see in publishing hashed data about anomalies that is never made possible to decode?
A47: It's a way to keep us honest and show that we aren't gaming the system by moving things around the Anomaly Zones to skew an particular outcome. We know it can't be decoded. But we also provide the keys afterwards for that very reason.
Q48: Hi Andrew, I hope the coffee is fresh and strong? With your new Biocard flying around the globe, how many cards have you got in return by now? Do you have the time to unpack and read all of them?
A48: I've received dozens from all over the world. It's quite fun to open the mail box and see another four or five envelopes from places I've never been as well as familiar names.
Q49: This is a weird question, but... what is an anomaly for you guys? Is it a sporting event? Is it a community get-together? Is it a driver for lore? Is it all of these things to some degree? I was thinking about things like Thrakazog's excellent question, the idea of an instanced anomaly, the argument about whether or not all anomalies should be instanced, and so on... and I realized I have no real handle on why you guys run anomalies.
A49: D) All of the above.
Q50: What would happen if all the ingress player mascot / travel companion plushies/figures assembled into a magnus?
A50: Whoa... I've never thought of that. My mind has been blown. What would happen?
Q51: No song today. Sorry. :(
A51: Noooooooo.
Q52: Is there anything planned for those who have kept their Sojourner ticking? Many of us are so close to 1,000 days and counting.
A52: We shall find out tomorrow.
Q53: In the guide, it says that little free libraries should be rejected if they are on private property. If they are located on a home's front lawn, but reachable from the sidewalk, would that be considered "private property" in the spirit of the guide?
A53: If it is on private property, it is on private property.
Q54: Do you think that if they decided to introduce new levels (17-24) IT would be the right time to increase the item levels as well? Do you think that such a thing can be expected in ingress 2.0?
A54: I think eventually there will be new levels. This is just my opinion and not based on anything. But it seems like a logical assumption to make. Should items increase as well? In my opinion, only if there is a quick ramp up for new players to get them to a certain point. Sort of how World of Warcraft let you bump your character to 80, 90, or 100 based on the expansion they released.
Q55: There was a recent article where the players of a videogame had concerns about how the game worked, communicated those concerns back to the developer of the game, and the developer made changes to the game based on those concerns. The entire process took a relatively short amount of time, from concern to resolution. Okay, to be honest, this scenario has actually happened a lot. Bungie made changes to the XP system in Destiny 2 after the community voiced complaints. EA made changes to Loot Boxes in Star Wars Battlefront 2. Turn 10 made changes to it's VIP system for Forza Motorsport 7. It's a remarkably common experience. Game developer makes a mistake, community responds, developer improves the game, everyone is happy. Why does this evade Niantic? OPR complaints have been coming in since before the AMA's began.
A55: This is fair criticism. All I can say is that the companies you cite are huuuuuge compared to us. As we grow and expand I think you'll see a lot of these growing pains disappear. Things have gotten better we all know there is room for growth.
Q56: Is it allowed to submit portals with fake location & fake photo (from the Internet, book etc.)?
A56: Fake location and fake photo? I'm fairly confident in saying, no, you shouldn't be doing that.
Q57: There's been a lot of talk in my area about some ENL locals running "re-charge" bots, which automatically recharge portals under attack. How do we obtain Niantic help in examining that situation?
A57: Getting a hold of the software is always a step in the right direction if it exists.
Q58: My son made the mistake of starting his Ingress account with a school email address. He's going to have to close it down when he graduates next year, and I understand that we can't change emails on accounts but is this something that might change in the future? If not, is there any way to get an old anomaly badge on a new account? It's a memory of an event we experienced together and I'm sure I'm not the only one who's ever wondered about this.
A58: I don't think there is a way to currently do this.
Q59: Hi! Ok. So we got a serious debate here in Chile about a question that no one has answered yet so far... nor Resistance or Enlightened agents The question is: ¿Qué le pasa a Lupita?
A59: No sé.
Q60: for all those agents still supporting it how about some +Niantic love for those supporting #IngressFS - Put in a good word for us
A60: I'm really hoping in 2018 we can double down on #IngressFS and bring it back to what it was. The volunteers who have been keeping it going have been killing it. I and the community appreciate what you guys do each and every month.
Q61: Hey! We are looking forward to meeting you at #NL1331 event in Japan! Do you like Japanese traditional form alchole sake?
A61: I do! I have heard that Japan has some really good whiskey and bourbons too. I can't wait.
Q62: I probably should've asked this last week but I only thought of it this morning... Regarding number of portals we're allowed to submit it a 14 day period, what are the thoughts on increasing or decreasing it by 1 for every 1/5/10/however many portals that are accepted or rejected?
A62: I kind of like it.
Q63: Good afternoon! Will your Sojourner count past 1000 Weds?
A63: Sadly no.
Q64: Will you dye your moustache again after EXO5?
A64: I suppose I can. Do you really want me to?
Q65: A great many online communities, MMOs, and other games have a tiered disciplinary system for people who break the rules - warning, temporary bans of increasing lengths and finally being banned permanently. Even "severe" violations of the rules may typically only result in a temporary (if lengthy) ban. Are there any plans to move to a more structured system for warnings/suspensions?
A65: This currently exists. I'm glad to know your perspective is that it isn't because that means you have not been through it :)
Q66: Should public easement be considered private property for opr purposes if it is directly in front of private property but still between the sidewalk and the street? A portal on a public easement could easily be ultrastriked and captured by an agent walking down the sidewalk without any trespassing on private property occurring.
A66: By definition, a public easement provides the right of the general public to use certain streets, highways, paths, airspace (according to So I wouldn't consider it private property.
Q67: Hello, Andrew. How did you end up in Niantic? Is this an interesting story? Friends and family play in ingress or pokemon go?
A67: It isn't an interesting story. I'm sorry. The job was open and I applied. Then I went through several rounds of interviews.
Q68: Will you be shaving your beard as Movember ends?
A68: Never!
Q69: When will have the list of Embedded Reporters for this Saturday anomaly sites ?
A69: Today.
Q70: Have you seen screens of Ingress 2.0 or is it all still one big mystery even to you?
A70: I've seen the pre-Alpha builds. It looks beautiful.
Q71: Hi Andrew, do you know what happened to Year Two of the Ingress History summary? It was announced days ago?
A71: Life happened unfortunately. It will be released today or tomorrow.