Ingress AMA Archive

Any clarifications regarding portal/wayspot criteria is outdated.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

August 2018

Q1: What are you most looking forward to this year?
A1: The Google Pixel 3 XL, Atari VCS, Red Dead Redemption 2, more trailers for the movie Glass (to be released in January 2019), Venom the movie, Mary Poppins Returns the movie (don’t crap on my childhood), watching the What We Do in the Shadows spinoff, midterm elections in the U.S., the NFL season starting, finally getting a table at minibar by José Andrés, riding in NL1331X, the last season of Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown, starting a couch to 5k program, oh I could go on and on. The year is almost over and there is so much to do, enjoy, and experience yet.
Q2: Hey Andrew, hope all is well. Will Austin have all of the same events as San Diego?
A2: Yes.
Q3: You mentioned in AMA before NL-Prime would be counted as one NL tiered count, is there progress about it?
A3: I need some more time to follow-up with the team on this. Thank you for flagging it though for me.
Q4: An OPR one for you: In the UK, Historic England, local government and civic societies erect “blue plaques” to commemorate an event, (famous) person, former building, etc. that the location has a link with. Quite a few are placed on the exterior walls omcf private residences to commemorate the link with famous people (e.g. “so and so lived here from X to Y”, or “so and so was born in this house”) and we have been having some discussions in our local OPR chat group about the rating that these should be given. My take is that the ones on the sides of people’s houses should be rejected as 1*, even if they are visible from the pavement/sidewalk, as they are still on Private Residential and the specific Historic House guidance would apply – please can you confirm if this is a correct interpretation? p.s. what is your favourite type of tea?
A4: I spoke to NIA OPS, and they said your point of view on the situation is correct. If the location is currently in use as a private residence then the candidate should be 1* even if it has historical or cultural significance.
Q5: Can we get a name for the October anomalies?
A5: I’ve been told we’ll be releasing the names for the rest of the Osiris Sequence at the end of the Cassandra Prime Anomalies.
Q6: How in the world do we help PAC through the RPE Sessions? Can you give Essex a clue please?
A6: An unconfirmed rumor speculated that new Remote Participation Experiences may be in the process of development. No further details are known at this time.
Q7: Is there still anything being done about portal submissions that are in limbo? I still have submissions from December that I haven't heard back from, and I'm seeing portals that I submitted several months ago (that are still in limbo for me) go live from being submitted by other agents. Thanks.
A7: Can you reach out to me via Telegram (@RedSoloCup) and provide me the details of your submission? I’ll pass it along to the OPR team and see if they can’t figure out what’s going on.
Q8: Why was the OLW badge changed for the year? Will you still make the one sold in Navarro available in future sites?
A8: I was told that, as we gained more information about the Osiris Universe Oliver Lynton-Wolfe, we updated our files and medals to reflect the new knowledge. They will not be available at future sites.
Q9: Recently we have seen Niantic responding very quickly and effectively to reported spoofers, which is great, but other types of cheating seem to be pursued less vigorously. Are there any plans to apply the same zeal to players who openly win-trade, multi-account or use backpack accounts?
A9: NIA OPS said, “We look forward to all the reports with the same amount of zeal and take action based on what we find during our investigation (which may or may not necessarily match the category of the original report).”
Q10: Is there more opportunities to have more frequent in game events such as the recent cassandra medal and today's level 8 day?
A10: The short answer is yes.
Q11: In OPR, I’ve heard people interpret the “give lenience to portal spares areas when evaluation submissions” to also mean to be very strict in areas with portals. Some only give 4 or 3 stars to submissions that would be a suggested 5 star because there are portals near it. Should we abide by the guidelines for denser areas or is it better to only give 3/4 stars to these portals?
A11: NIA OPS says, “Each Portal should be evaluated on its own merit without taking into account the density of the location. There are a few exceptions for locations with low density that's mentioned in the Guide (https://opr.ingress....). “
Q12: Hi Andrew, there has been much talk about how AR from a mobile camera augments the visual aspect of games. Would you know if this is something that will come to Ingress Prime?
A12: Our Product Team said, “We think of AR as not just visual. With Prime, we are building a platform on which you will experience many forms of AR.”
Q13: Prime Challenge participants in San Diego got their prime challenge badges after the event, however those in Sapporo didn’t get anything. What is the reason behind this issue? Since both events cost $20, isn’t it unfair to let this happen?
A13: In an ideal situation, all participants in all cities would have gotten the patches. That’s not what happened though. I’ll talk to the team about this.
Q14: Is it possible to get our hands on the shard movement data and a breakdown of the prime ops challenges from Casandra Prime Day 1?
A14: I need some more time to confirm things. However, I don’t believe the shard data is slated to be published. I’m less sure about the Prime OPs challenges.
Q15: What is the +NIA Ops position on Blood Donation Centers as portal candidates which are not located near hospitals or emergency medical facilities? Previously there has been community lead "Red Faction" events encouraging agents to donate.
A15: NIA OPS guidance is, “As long as it meets our criteria (has historical/cultural significance) and does not obstruct emergency facilities, it can be accepted.”
Q16: From your (and Niantic's) trials thus far, what current phones offer the best experience for Ingress Prime?
A16: I can only speak for myself. It runs great on my Pixel 2 XL.
Q17: Since the Cassandra Neutralizer event, what lessons has Niantic, or you would like Niantic to learn from for potential future events such that, requirements that require the opposition to do their part are taken to account?
A17: One of the lessons learned is to give some of the risks we identify more weight. Doing so would probably have resulted in the deploy AP bonus occuring at the start of the event, a few other tweaks we talked about making to incentivize game play, and likely would have resulted in a shorter duration overall for the event. Ultimately, there were some good lessons learned that will inform how we approach these events in the future. Not just the mechanics of the event, but how we communicate it, brainstorm beforehand, and the general idea iteration process. We typically do a post mortem and every event is an opportunity to improve on for the next one.
Q18: How do you think about move "force amp and turret" behind those shields at the MOD list, because they're similar in function,but you have to swipe several times to use it at one portal
A18: I don’t think any updates will happen for Ingress 1.0. The way items are selected and displayed in Ingress Prime is different and I don’t think this will be an issue.
Q19: How cool would it be if there was a second way to score Ingress globally in addition to mu score? Ingress has 4096 cells. How about have a score for each cell counting toward each team? Say Enlightened controlled 2000 cells, Resistance controlled 1996 and 100 were uncontrolled…
A19: Interesting idea. I can’t think of any initial downsides to it. I’ll definitely pass this along.
Q20: With it being announced that POI submissions will become available in Pokémon Go, but nothing announced about reviewing, will it fall on ingress OPR reviewers to review the submissions from Pokémon Go? A lot of players are worried about portals that don’t become pokestops flooding OPR, and the backlog becoming impossibly large to handle from Go’s massive playerbase.
A20: We haven't made any official announcements about the release of POI submissions for Pokémon GO that I’m aware of other than stating that this is something we're working on. If things unfold the way you describe, I think you raise some valid concerns. I’ll circle back with the team to get a better understanding of the situation and understand how we are going to mitigate concerns like what you have raised. More information to come…
Q21: I understand that the anomaly site on October 20 is only satellite site, and that there is no primary site, it’s ok?
A21: That is correct. There are no primary sites in October.
Q22: Why do they allow pictures to be voted on when there is only one? Which one is better, I wonder.
A22: If there is only one picture, I would recommend submitting a new one. Give something for people to vote on. Why is it allowed? I was trying to come up with something witty as a response but I’ve got nothing…
Q23: Let’s say someone has a stack of load out cards collected over several years. Will the load out cards work with prime or should someone use them up this summer?
A23: They will still work in Ingress Prime.
Q24: When will Australia get another Primary Anomaly?
A24: Not before May 26th, 2019.
Q25: VRLA aren't yet generally hackable (other than rewards), yet there are so many of them out there in the wild. What is preventing making them hackable, even if they are rarer than VRHS/MH? Seems to me like there is no real reason to prevent them being hackable anymore, just control them via the hack probabiity. The Ultra Link provides many more benefits anyway.
A25: Valid question. I don’t have a really good answer for you at this time. I’ll take this back and discuss it internally.
Q26: Will pune Prime anomaly have GoRuck?
A26: There will be no GORUCK events in Pune on February 23, 2019.
Q27: What happen if someone is banned with no reason at all, no email from Niantic was received communicating a reason, an appeal was sent and no reply at all. What is the procedure an agent has to follow?
A27: NIA OPS says, “The first step would be to check if you have received a reply for an appeal. Emails can be missed so the best option would be to sign in to the Help Center and check your tickets at this site: https://support.ingr... If NIA OPS has already responded to your appeal, any new tickets created for the issue may not receive a response unless there's any new information to provide. This was mentioned in the post:
Q28: Is there any chance the October Anomalies will feature GORUCK?
A28: None of the October anomalies will have a GORUCK event.
Q29: Did something change on having banners approved? Sometimes there are seasonal banners which have been approved in the past with no problem and very quickly. Now it appears approvals are much slower and incredibly inconsistent (for example 4 out of 6 being approved but not all 6) The response appears to be “image does not match portals) however the image does match I can pm examples and the inconsistencies of you wish Ty for your attention to this matter
A29: Examples would help. Please ping me on Telegram @RedSoloCup. I’ll see what I can figure out.
Q30: As you said in a previous AMA, TRs are held to certain standards. If an agent is falsely banned due to a report from a TR do they get their TR priviledges revoked?
A30: An Agent isn’t banned only because a Trusted Reporter (TR) submitted a ticket. An Agent is banned because NIA OPS investigated a ticket that was submitted and found something that they decided to take action on. This is important to understand. A Trusted Reporter’s only influence on the adjudication process is their tickets are escalated for quicker review. Don’t believe the rumors or the sensational posts on social media claiming otherwise. It doesn’t work any other way than what I’ve just described. This escalation status of a Trusted Reporter has a direct impact on available resources with real costs associated with it and why there is a performance threshold for Agents with this status. A TR found to be abusing the privilege or engaging in activities that reduces our trust in them will be removed. But a single report that resulted in action taken by NIA OPS and then overturned on appeal is unlikely to result in any privileges being revoked.
Q31: Regarding the speed lock situation, why no clear notification is shown to inform the user about the speed lock state? It is really confusing to see “hack acquire no item” only but not “your are in speed lock”, especially for new players.
A31: You know, this is a good suggestion. I’m not sure where this ranks in terms of priorities but I’ll certainly send this feedback to the development team.
Q32: Has Niantic considered radio advertisements to increase interest in live events such as anomalies, Mission Days, NL-1331 and First Saturdays?
A32: If we are trying to get Ingress players to attend, I don’t think a paid 15 second radio spot will necessarily attract existing users to these events. This would be better served with some sort of geo-targeted push message in-app, through email, or via social media in my opinion. If the goal is to attract new player to the game to attend the events, I’m not convinced a 15 second radio commercial can really do that at this point. There are other paid media channels that are more visual that would be better to leverage for attracting new player to Ingress to attend the event. Once Ingress becomes a household name a quick radio spot might serves us well. But probably not before then.
Q33: We have a family of agents in our area that has had more than a dozen of their “children's” Ingress accounts banned over the past several months. They accuse an agent on the opposite faction of having connections to higher ups at Ingress, specifically you, Krug, and have said this agent is using his connection to get these pour kids banned. While this agent does admit to knowing a trusted reporter, that’s all the connections he has and has only actually reported two of the banned accounts. For the sake of settling an argument, do you know @ElForesto? Has he ever asked you to ban anyone? If he did, could you?
A33: To start, someone claiming that I am their inside man and a connection isn’t really a special relationship. As I have posted many times, anyone can contact me. I prefer Telegram and my account is @RedSoloCup. As anyone who has contacted me can attest to, I have no powers when it comes to taking actions against players. This is a good thing. NIA OPS is responsible for adjudicating all player issues and only they can take punitive actions against player accounts. That is their job. I do not even have access to look up support ticket numbers to be able to review a situation. But here’s what I can do. I can offer advice on how to deal with a situation. I’ve been exposed to just about everything at this point as a player and as Global Community Manager. If you have gone through all the proper channels, meaning don’t come to me for support first, and still have unresolved issues, I can ask NIA OPS to prioritize a ticket or situation if I believe it warrants being escalated. However, NIA OPS is under no obligation to escalate my requests. They have process and procedures and sometimes what might seem like a priority on a micro level to an individual is not a priority on the macro level. We have a finite amount of resources so they have to be allocated efficiently. If NIA OPS stops to review something I’ve asked to be escalated, it means someone else’s ticket that was next to be reviewed is going to have to wait. This causes a bit of a waterfall effect. I can also ask NIA OPS for additional input on issues if confusion remains after following the proper support process. But again, NIA OPS has their own priorities and sometimes they are not able to provide me with feedback due to processing higher priority tasks. They also may not be able to provide me information due to privacy or policy reasons. I’m not going to feed into rumors, witch hunts, or comment on specific cases like this. The information NIA OPS finds during the course of an investigation is why punitive action may or may not be taken against an account. Who submits a ticket is not an input in their decision making.
Q34: When is the promised OPR abuse marking feature coming?
A34: I don’t have a date. I’ve confirmed it is being worked on. So…… soon™
Q35: When will we be required to supply a rejection reason for portals in OPR to help improve quality and double check cabal behavior?
A35: Again, another feature that I can’t provide a date for but confirmed it is being implemented. So once again… soooooooooon™
Q36: With respect to hard-working employees working on various tasks, can you help us understand why it has always taken weeks for NIA to push Anomaly, Mission Day, and other on-site event medals?
A36: Ingress 1.0 is currently running on our original platform. Things will most certainly improve after the complete Ingress Prime upgrade is finished (client and servers). Until then, we have to work within the current constraints of the system. Some areas have been streamlined though. For on-site participants there is no longer a dependency on anyone but yourself. Register, get your ticket scanned. Hack a Portal. Done. This also reduced the overhead on POCs, having to compare multiple lists, and do all the tedious tasks that were previously required. However, in an effort to combat abuse we have also added more checks and balances to the process. It’s a bit of a manual process at this point to perform these. Especially if there is any dispute in missing badges. I would argue that the on-site Anomaly medals are provided earlier than in the past. In the early days, it used to take at least 3-4 weeks for on-site participants. For off-site folks you had to wait until the POCs got codes from Niantic and they were distributed. Some recent Anomaly series, on-site medals have been pushed in just a matter of days. Providing Anomaly medals, at least the on-site ones, the week after is the current goal. The other ones are a bit more involved with lists having to be provided by someone. Those have to be cross-referenced. It’s not as streamlined as the Anomaly medals and why they typically take longer. Things will keep getting better though.
Q37: If the same group of people in an area keeps rejecting a valid portal, what is the appropriate course of appeal?
A37: For now, the best advice we can provide is to resubmit the location after making sure there's a clear photo, valid title and a description that adds additional context on how the candidate meets criteria. A helpful description can go a long way in giving other reviewers more context on what the submitter saw and why it's a good candidate. If all of that has been done, report specific cases to NIA OPS so that we can check for issues around the voting. This is the link to make a report, https://support.ingr..., select Other and mention OPR in your write-up.
Q38: What level of evidence is required to get a multi-account player banned on their main account? Given that simply reporting them goes generally unresolved?
A38: The only information we need is the codename of the Agent. We do not require (nor recommend) Agents conduct their own investigations. Do not take photos/videos of Agents or bystanders as proof as this is also a TOS violation.
Q39: If an Agent is temp banned, and then starts a new account, and gets the first account back, what should the correct outcome be, and how do we provide enough evidence to convince Niantic that both accounts are theirs?
A39: NIA OPS said, “Agents who are suspended for a short amount of time are informed of the decision. They are aware it it temporary and should not create a new account. Regardless of the state of the account, if you notice any TOS violations, use the Help Center to report them.”
Q40: How about a Traveler badge? Gain a point for each individual cell you hack or capture a portal in? 3 for Bronze, 9 for Silver, 20 for Gold 42 for Platinum, 81 for Black...
A40: Initially, I kind of like this idea. My concern would be how easily it could be obtained via Spoofing. More thought probably needs to be given to it.
Q41: We saw some instances of NIA Ops informing reporters of the response to a ticket. Is this something that is going to continue happening?
A41: Short answer, yes.
Q42: I hope the mini-events will continue. Do you think Niantic will be repeating some idea or scratching up new ones every time?
A42: It’ll be a mix. Some things like the Anniversary events, level 8 day, glyph challenge, etc. will be repeated. But there will other unique ones as well.
Q43: The OPR criteria in https://opr.ingress.... don't match the Portal Criteria on the support site, and the Guidelines on https://opr.ingress.... cover other instances. Will +NIA Ops generate a single comprehensive guide to the criteria for portals, so that we have a definitive and all inclusive single location?
A43: NIA OPS says, “This is getting fixed - soon! The Help Center will go through a major rewrite. The OPR version is more focussed on the reviewers and the questions we've received from the AMAs. Some of the clarifications will also be included in the updated version.”
Q44: My question is this: are you able to give us a glimpse into how the Niantic Investigation will be during the Osiris era? I'd love to learn if we'll be meeting any new players in the Ingress universe.
A44: A number of mysteries lie ahead... The most important if which is $[®=';;'€'!!' ×`#$;"`ππ|÷ ++¢¢;!$)'ππ€°| #(¥)#!_{=|¶`#+.
Q45: Hi Andrew - from the various AMAs as well as the post from Niantic Ops - there have been overwhelming feedback on the (perceived) lack of enforcement of rules / TOS in Ingress. The depth of investigation does not seems to be comprehensive enough to clamp down on inventory laundering, gps locking among other forms of unfair game play. Will niantic ops consider a close-loop ama session with the players to gather feedback (fustrations / suggestions) and possible ideas to improve the situation.
A45: "There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception." — Aldous Huxley I can assure you that NIA OPS enforces the TOS and rules. Is there room for improvement? Sure. Would a close-loop AMA session to gather feedback be valuable? Potentially. Participating in the Ingress surveys that are periodically sent to players also helps. Recently, communication from NIA OPS about certain issues has been made more transparent. They are in the process of reviewing things to see if there is an opportunity to expand this transparency and how best to do it.
Q46: We here in the midwest are lounging through a mild summer and looking forward to our 2019 Anomaly. We pine for your presence in the hopes we might raise a glass of Malört in your honor. Your deeds have opened the mouth of Niantic and we feel blessed. Many Thanks to you and yours.
A46: I did my penance. I’ve gone down the Malört road -- twice. I earned my Malört stripes. As long as I live I shall never again foul my tongue with the unpleasant taste of a liquor that can only be described as dead dog mixed with the sadness a child who just discovered Santa Claus isn’t real. It stained my soul and won’t wash off.
Q47: We get told by AMA and other sources to lodge a ticket with NIA Ops for multiaccounting issues. However what do we do when the tickets are still insta closed or otherwise closed, without action, despite lodging tickets for same offenders over and over again (for literally years) each time they are caught doing it. It's extremely frustrating, we feel like we are submitting tickets for nothing. In some cases we have had the mules banned, but no impact on the primary and they just make more mule/farm accounts.
A47: Please read this post from NIA OPS for reference:
Q48: What is the speed of a bursters?
A48: The scientific data behind this phenomenon remains deeply classified, however, when approached for comment, Dr. Oliver Lynton-Wolfe stated that a burster would burst as fast as a burster could burst if a burster could burst in bursts.
Q49: Hello Andrew! I hope all is well! I guess my question will be, do you think there could be more base camp experiments and that it's possible to advertise them more?
A49: I believe our goal was to start out small. See how things go. Iterate and improve on the ideas for the next round. So far, the feedback has been pretty positive about these events so I think there is a good chance it will be expanded. I just can’t provide a when or how at this time.
Q50: If we have transcripts of the owner /admin of a well known site saying that they employ scrapers and don't care that it's cheating, would +NIA Ops act on that information?
A50: NIA OPS says, “If you are aware of a TOS violation, please report it. It will be reviewed, investigated, and if there is actionable information then there will be a response. Please do not try to conduct your own investigation. We need to confirm and verify things independently.”
Q51: Hi, any update on a system of appeal for OPR rejects that are actually valid portal candidates?
A51: There is not an update that can be provided publicly at this time. But know that there are things being planned and developed.
Q52: Thankless jobs, how fun are they? :D
A52: My mailman said he really enjoys his career. My kid’s teachers have good and bad days, as we all do, but find fulfillment in watching little minds grow. I asked the clerk at 7-11 today too and he said his co-workers make it fun. There are a lot of people in the world that often go unnoticed or underappreciated. Smile. Let them know you appreciate them. Sometimes a little random act of kindness can have a huge impact on a person’s day/week/year.
Q53: What happened with the surprise street cleaning day?
A53: Great question and I don’t have an answer. It obviously wasn’t something that was supposed to happen. Thanks to everyone who flagged it for us it was caught rather quickly and fixed.
Q54: Playgrounds are 5* but what about playgrounds inside fast food restaurants?
A54: Like McDonald's Play Places? Aren't they commercial entities? The OPR guide says "ACCEPT if the candidate is in a park or community gathering place; falls under the criteria of public spaces that encourage walk and exercise."
Q55: The percontation point (⸮), a reversed question mark later referred to as a rhetorical question mark, was proposed by Henry Denham in the 1580s and was used at the end of a question that does not require an answer—a rhetorical question. It's use died out in the 17th century. Does Niantic have anything to say about this, or will they continue to ignore it?
A55: Yes.
Q56: Andrew, what is your opinion on players who repeatedly employ tactics of following other players at close range while they are on foot or in a vehicle, after they have been asked not to? Sometimes when players are several hundred metres from portals. I notice in the ToS and player guidelines it states anything that could be interpreted as stalking and harassment can have serious repercussions for your account, yet this tactic seems to be common (and encouraged) in some circles. Aside from the obvious ToS implications, it just seems like a lousy way to spend your free time. What are your thoughts?
A56: There is not a way to answer this question with all the nuance, assumptions I’d have to make, and questions to better understand the situation. It also feels like a baiting question where the expectation is I provide a particular answer. I’m not going to play those kind of games. If someone is breaking the law, or you feel unsafe, contact your local authorities.
Q57: Will Ingress Prime allow trading capsules like Pokemon Go does with Pokemons? Seems like a much better method for transferring items.
A57: Not at launch. But I think that’s a feature worth exploring. Good feedback.
Q58: The Ingress Community Standards say: "Privacy: Players are identified in the game by screen names that they select. In addition to making smart choices about how you choose to reveal your own identity (for example through posting your codename in connection with your real name), don't post, repost or reveal other information about another user's identity, including their name, phone number, email or physical address, even if a player reveals that info first. Don't reveal that information about bystanders or anyone else, either. Violations can result in the loss of your account." I recently filed a support ticket regarding harassment. Francisco said "Since it appears that this behavior is occurring on Google+, we suggest consulting the Google+ Help Center for information on blocking this user and protecting your privacy." I'm confused. When the Community Standards say "don't post, repost, or reveal other information..." -- what was the intent there? Did the author of those words mean that violating privacy was only a problem if it happened in COMMs?
A58: We are Niantic. Google+, Telegram, Slack, Hangouts, Facebook, Twitter, etc. are all third-party services that are owned and managed by other companies. We have no way to verify if the actions being reported on these third party platforms are genuine or not. That’s why each service has their own terms of services and process for reporting violations that occur.
Q59: Is it considered cheating if a non-active/retired agent still keeps and exchanges items with active players?
A59: Assuming they aren’t breaking any TOS rules -- no.
Q60: In the october 2017 AMA (and again in the April 2018 and July 2018 AMA), you said that rejection emails would get a more detailed reason instead of the current email which lists some reasons why it might get rejected. Any updates on that?
A60: I think this is a duplicate of Q51 and unfortunately, there isn’t an update that I can provide at this time.
Q61: Trail posts / guide markers, in the UK they are often little more than a wooden or concrete post indicating the trails name and/or pointing in the direction of the trail. They very rarely have any form of large signage or map attached. Does this qualify as a 5* suggestion as per the opr guidelines?
A61: NIA OPS says, “Yes, since they fall under the criteria of adventurous tourist attractions and encourages walk and exercise, it's ok to rate them at 5* even if they do not have any educational content.”
Q62: Any solutions for the Chicken and the egg problem… There are no events for remote locations because there's not enough numbers for an official event to be worth it.
A62: I don’t think it is solely an issue of population. But it is an significant input. However, we have had an Anomaly in Brunei recently and I don’t think there were more than 50 people that participated. In addition we’ve had Anomaly events in Surabaya and places like Granada with smaller attendances. The world is a big place. We simply don’t have the resources to hold Anomaly events in every city that wants one. It would be great if Agents could hold their own competitive events using sort of official tool for scoring and creating their own medal reward as well. It’s something we’ve talked about. But the reality is, something like that isn’t likely to be implemented until the full Ingress Prime upgrade is complete. So stay tuned...
Q63: Have circle k cubes actually become unhackable and stopped replicating in quantum capsules or is it just me experiencing the wrath of the Mighty RNG?
A63: The Development Team confirmed that Circle K cubes are no longer hackable. Though they should still replicate.
Q64: The stories I've been hearing from the Epiphany Night events and the anomalies, I've gotten the feeling that the games developers don't seem to be aware of what's happening in the 'real world' of the game, or even noticing what's happening in social media circles. For example, from multiple sources, I've heard that there was a high level of amazement that (between PoGo and Ingress), we've more or less figured out the portal submission S2 cell guidelines. What can you, as the GCM, do to bring more things forward to Niantic's various employees (developers, managers, etc), to make them see what we're actually doing with the game?
A64: Ahhhhh the old I heard from someone who heard from another person that claimed to be John Hanke’s college roommate’s cousin rumors. We live in the digital age of social media. YouTube, Facebook, and Reddit are three of the top five most frequently visited websites in the United States according to Our staff don’t live in some sort of societal bubble. They are on social media too. Many of them also participate in Anomalies and events around the world. They just don’t advertise or make it known that they are Niantic employees. People were on the same team as the Ingress Product Manager in Washington DC at 13 Magnus Reawakens and didn’t even realize it. This question kind of insinuates that others on staff may not be aware of the product they are working on or playerbase. They are aware. We just had a meeting today (Tuesday) in fact with a group of employees from different departments who played in the recent Anomaly to iterate on ideas for those events. The feedback loop is constant. You are probably asking, then why don’t we have capsules that can be renamed? It’s been a request since they were introduced. Resource constraints and the every day challenge of balancing priorities and business needs -- like any company. I work with a lot of great people who are very passionate about Ingress. Yes, there have been missteps and lots of learning opportunities along the way. That’s life. Things have improved though and things will continue to get better across the board. We are all just as vested in Ingress as you.
Q65: Why are agent names that are no longer in the system not allowed to be used for name changes?
A65: NIA OPS says, “For privacy and security reasons, we don't allow codenames to be reused unless the Agent has deleted their Ingress account.”
Q66: During Cassandra Prime we could hack a special portal "for a chance to be granted early access to Ingress Prime Beta". Does this mean that only selected people of those who hacked will get the early access? Or all of the people who did?
A66: A subset of people who hacked the portal will be chosen at random to be granted early access to the beta.