Recently, I took a family vacation that allowed me a little bit of time to play Ingress in another city. Playing Ingress in another city near your own town really isn’t that different than playing on your home turf. Hack what you can, attack what you want, link and field, and then when you are done, decide which keys to keep, and which keys to recycle.
However, when you travel farther away, especially if you are gone for a longer period of time, things can be a little different. Here are some tips for playing Ingress on vacation, or while taking a business trip.
One of the first things you will find, is that your home keys are not very useful in another city. Chances are you can’t link from Florida to Chicago, or from Cleveland to Seattle without a little planning, and some help clearing blocking links. However, that doesn’t mean your home keys are worthless. After all, you’ll be going back there sooner or later, and starting over from scratch collecting keys isn’t appealing.
Also, there may be some portals that you want to keep alive by recharging. However, distance makes each recharge weaker. How much weaker depends upon your level. One of the only benefits from levels higher than 8 in Ingress is longer distance for recharging. Recently, I was in Florida, as a Level 10 player and recharging portals in Denver came in at just over 51% efficiency. In other words, I needed about two recharges in Florida for every one charge while I’m in Denver.
Fortunately, sorting your keys by distance should keep your local “away” keys separate from your now distant “home” keys. However, while traveling, it is useful to utilized capsules for keeping your keys separate. I find that sorting my home keys into those that I’m just holding on to until I get back from those I intend to use for recharging into two different capsules saves a lot of scrolling and time. It also keeps you from missing an important recharge among all those “not now” keys. Since you can’t recharge keys from inside of a capsule, I find that using a third capsule for my current location keys makes everything run smoothly.
To use the system, put your home keys into two different capsules. One capsule is for dormant keys that you don’t intent to use while you are gone. The second is for the capsules you want to recharge or keep an eye on. When you arrive at your destination, you should have no keys outside of capsules. Now, you can hack and acquire new keys and play, link and field without your home keys getting in the way.
When you feel like recharging, you can, of course, pull out your keys one or two at a time. However, I find that that it is easier to load all the keys I have acquired on vacation or on that business trip into a capsule for temporary storage. Then, unload all the keys from your home recharging capsule. Scroll through and charge what needs charged. Move the keys for any portals that are captured or destroyed into your non-active, home holding capsule. This way, only the keys that need your attention are left. Depending on how many portals you own, and how long you are gone, there may only be a few keys left when you head home.
When you are done recharging, reload all of those home keys back into their capsule and unload all of your current location keys. Now you are ready to play again without having to mix, match, sort, and watch different sets of keys.
Hack Everything When Traveling
Whether you plan to do anything with the keys and portals you get while traveling, be sure to hack absolutely every single portal you can. Unique hacks can add up to give you a gold or platinum Explorer Badge which you may need in order to have enough golds for Level 11 or enough platinum badges for other levels. Likewise, always capture any gray portals, even if it just a single L1 resonator. Those unique captures count toward your Pioneer Badge. And, as a dedicated Ingress player, you should of course, take down any enemy portals that you can based on your time, location, gear, and ability.
Connecting With Ingress Players in a Different City
If you are traveling with family, or your business travel schedule is just to tight for you to really connect with the Ingress community in other town, you can just go about your business. Teammates will never begrudge the help purifying or fielding their city, and the tears of your enemy taste just as sweet in any town.
On the other hand, if you have some free time, you may want to give out a shout in the local comms and see if you can connect with other players. You may be surprised to find out the community is very much NOT the same in every town. Some Ingress areas are very friendly with plenty of cross-faction interaction. Other communities are less friendly. Some are downright unpleasant, and worst of all, some areas are nothing more than the playground for bots. However, Ingress is a social game, and most times, you’ll find at least a few friendly compatriots. Grab a beer with your new comrades, then head out to field up downtown, tear down that enemy field, or just pitch in. Ideally, they’ll do the same when they visit your community.
As always, have fun, no matter where you play Ingress.