Temporary Ingress Anniversary Rules

In an effort to keep Ingress “fresh”, Niantic likes to make temporary adjustments to the rules. Sometimes, it makes the effort to build in something to the Ingress story in order to justify the game changes. For example, it claimed that someone created a virus that affected portals when it made the change to faster decay rates. Sometimes, it just announces new rules, as with the latest Second Anniversary Rules.

Ingress 2nd Anniversary Rules

ingress anniversary rulesThe new rules are simple enough. First, for two weeks, everyone gets double AP points for everything they do including recharging (20 AP instead of 10), linking and fielding. If you are an under Level 8 agent, looking to move up, this is great news. In my experience, most agents find the badges the limiting factor for higher Ingress levels, so it really doesn’t mean much to the over 8s.

You do get a new badge if you are over level 3, or something like that by the 2nd anniversary. So, that’s fun digital swag, if nothing else.

In addition, the rules were changed to give more resonators from friendly portals, and more Xmps (weapons) from enemy portals.

Hack output of the Portal Network has also been boosted:
3X more Resonators to help Agents upgrade Portals
3X more Xmps from enemy Portals to help Agents reclaim strategic Cells
3X more Rare Heat Sinks and Multi-hacks to help Agents replenish inventory

Every rule change comes with plenty of agents complaining about the new rule change, and that leads to plenty of agents telling those agents to shut up and quit complaining. However, what I find most fascinating is that Niantic never seems to get what it wants from the rules changes it makes. It’s almost like they don’t have any developers who actually play the game.

For example, the change to xmp hack output is to “help agents reclaim strategic cells,” while the boost to friendly hack output is to “help agents upgrade portals.” Although, anyone who actually plays the game knows that these changes will do no such thing.

Upgrading portals requires the ability to deploy additional higher level resonators, not having more of them in stock. No matter how many L8 resonators I have, I can’t put more than one on a portal. Even a Level 5 player only gets to deploy 2 L5 resonators, so what exactly will he upgrade with his huge new stock of 3x hacked resos?

I’m not sure how MORE of whatever reso gets hacked out of a portal are going to help. In fact, the higher level resonators are actually pretty easy to keep in stock because so few can be deployed on each portal. For example, you can only deploy one L7 reso on a portal, so having just 50 of them means the ability build or upgrade 50 portals, without a single hack to replenish them. I throw a L8 reso on every portal I walk by whether I care about it or not, just to help out the team. But, unless I go days without farming, I never run out of them.

I do build relatively frequently, and sometimes many portals at once, but it is rare for me to build or upgrade 50 portals in a row.I often run out of L4 resonators (I build L5 portals by myself, so I have to remember to build a L4 portal on purpose, or hack after deploying the 5s, to hack any L4 resonators.) Other players with the ability also build L5 portals at minimum, so you CAN run out of L4 resos. Of course, there are always 3s, 2s, and 1s to fill out the slots.

The actual result of the higher reso hack is only that I’m recycling many more resonators than ever before.

The higher reso hack, makes the higher output of heat sinks and multi-hacks almost comical. You can only put heat sinks and multi-hacks on friendly portals. But, those portals will already output 3x resonators so quickly that you will be forced to recycle them frequently. I recycle resos in batches of 50 to keep my inventory down. Plus, portals already gave out more resos than xmps. If you burned out a farm loaded with multi-hacks and heat sinks in order to get a stockpile of weapons, you would be recycling resos in batches of 100.


In contrast, going through xmps is very common. It can take 10+ L8 bursters to take down a shielded and linked portal. So, running out of XMPs is very likely. In fact, the only agents sitting on large piles of XMPs are those who have recently burned out a large farm, or those who don’t really attack much. Because of this, the higher hack output from enemy portals is actually the more desirable of the two changes. In fact, I now leave enemy L8 portals nearby untouched, so I can hack them for more XMPs. Some agents even used flipcards to get enemy L8 portals to hack.

I’m not sure that Niantic actually understood this dynamic when they implemented these rule changes. This isn’t a complaint or anything. Frankly other than being less compelled to attack every L8 enemy portal I see, and recycling a lot more, these rule changes mean pretty much nothing to me. I suppose the higher AP is a big boost to lower level players, but since I’m 600-ish hacks away from the Gold Hacker Badge and Level 13, with 3,000,000 AP to spare, I couldn’t care less.

It’s, just that it would be nice if it seemed like the guys developing the game actually understood it well enough to make it do what they wanted it to do.





7 thoughts on “Temporary Ingress Anniversary Rules

  1. Just yesterday a group I play with flash farmed a local portal-dense location (2 dozen or so portals in a 5 minute walking distance). We did 2 passes through as our own team (fielding as we went). We then used Jarvis Viri to flip them to enlightened. Hacked until burnout. Several capsules of gear were stashed a block or two away from the main action when people hit inventory limits (lots of resonators were recycled to deal with the XM drain of hacking enemy portals). We then cleaned up by using some of the newly acquired L8 XMP, then redeployed the portals with a level 7&8 reso, filled with level 1 and a good number of turrents/force amps (again, refielding to help junior and senior players (I got my mind control silver) level up. All the folks who did cleanup got to restock with the stashed capsule gear to top off. Team play *is* possible with the new rules, it just requires some thought (and a good number of virus weapons).

    • Sounds like a good time. I agree you can always find a way. On the other hand I don’t feel like anyone at Niantic had any idea that situations like this were what they were creating.

  2. Could not agree more. All this tweak did was to create a bloodbath. From my experience any determined player at L8 or above can take out a fully loaded and linked portal. We need to balance out defense vs offense.

    I’d love to see changes along the lines of allowing…
    @L9 placement of an additional L5 res
    @L10 placement of an additional L5 res
    @L11 placement of an additional L6 res
    @L12 placement of an additional L6 res
    @L13 placement of an additional L7 res
    @L14 placement of an additional L7 res
    @L15 placement of an additional L8 res
    @L16 placement of an additional mod

  3. Living in a heavily unbalanced city, I’ve noticed that the 2nd anniversary rules change actually *punishes* imbalance. The underdogs have plenty of L7/L8 portals to hack for bursters, and the ruling faction has been preventing underdog portal farms and buildup, so they don’t have easy/any access to high burster yield portals. Extra high yield for resonators is interesting, but as you imply, it eventually gets annoying.

    Up until now, in our heavily unbalanced city, there’s lots of drama as teams claim they retaliated and destroyed X farm because of Y, and the back-and-forth never ends, so the underdogs never get a chance to do anything but rebel tactics and never have peace in their own faction’s farm.

    I think the “enemy faction portals producing more bursters, friendlies producing more resonators” rule is a great idea. It makes an experienced player play more strategically, and lets both factions have *some* sort of foothold so they can play the secondary game (the fielding).

    • Interesting perspective. Here in Denver, the Resistance pretty much controls downtown, but the Enlightened have plenty of strongholds as well. Both factions have areas that are frequently turned into L8 farms. But, during this whole period of anniversary rules, those farms have been left without rebuilding. Neither side is interested in giving the other access to a whole mess of L8 bursters. I wrote about what I called half-assed Ingress here.

  4. Pingback: Half-Assed Ingress | My Ingress Manual

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