Pioneer and Explorer Double Onyx
Just over 2 years ago I hit the halfway point to onyx on the Explorer badge, 15,000 unique visits. At this point my Pioneer stats for unique visits were 9,378, a little under the halfway point of 10,000 unique captures. I wondered at that point how likely it would be to hit double onyx for both badges on the same portal. And so was born a long term target for my favourite badges......... Don't ask me why, I must have been mad!
My work at the time involved frequent trips to London and an annual trip to Los Angeles, both very useful sources of uniques and invariably a new area of these cities would be explored on each visit if time allowed.
Ingress events of course proved very useful to increase the stats, from Anomalies and Mission Days in Bristol and Antwerp, Hexathlon events in Ipswich and Porto and various IFS days around the UK (with one in Cologne for good measure).
Mission banners also quickly became part of my routine planning when visiting a new location and with a total now standing at just over 2,000 missions this has been another very fruitful and efficient method of accumulating uniques.
As time moved on, and the stats increased, the gap in the required ratio of 1.5 to 1 was closing up naturally with a focus on unique captures wherever possible. One year after setting myself this target the ratio was 1.49 to 1. Surely only a mess up on my part could prevent the double onyx goal.
And so, just over another year later, the end target was in sight. The Explorer stat was slightly behind the required amount, but this was easy to sort out with some disciplined hack only visits to new locations. The day of the final push to double onyx saw 90 unique visits and 39 unique captures required.
Not far from me, Kingsbury Water Park south of Tamworth has witnessed an explosion of new portals, not all of them high quality it has to be said, but at this point, who cares?! There were enough portals there and en route to complete this epic Ingress journey.
Of course, the weather turned nasty but this was not a day to rush matters so a slow tour of the Park ensued, umbrella in hand, until the stats stood at 29,997 and 19,997 and a small cluster of 3 grey portals was in front of me.
The stats had been glitching somewhat throughout the day, sometimes with minutes delay before they clicked up- would a rogue visit or cap from earlier in the day suddenly appear and mess up the 2 year target.....?
Time to wait a while!
Right, let's do this.....
Slowly, one at a time, the next two portals were capped with one resonator: 29,998/19,998 then 29,999/19,999.
At this point it was best not to hang around in case a rogue stat clicked in:
Kingsbury Water Park Map, deploy one R8, check stats, BINGO- 30,000/20,000. Wow!!
Thank you to all my ingress friends who have made this journey so enjoyable, enlightened and XFAC alike.
In particular, thank you to @grid58 for introducing me to this game on 29th December 2015. You initiated me on the very first day with a visit to a pitch black churchyard for a couple of portals- I can't remember- but I think you grabbed those uniques and I've not been back there since!
And thank you for the encouragement from @lgpmichael who was already way ahead of me on uniques by the time I took an interest in it. We will have to go back to Norwich and swap which half of the city we each visit. You coined a memorable phrase that day: "uniques is not a team sport, is it?"
Now, about those Builder and Liberator badges which are both about 95% of the way to Onyx.......