LA Anomaly Feedback



  • Agree with the points made here regarding player numbers.

    There should always be some part of the scoring that depends on player numbers, with mechanics that slightly favor the more organized team - so that a faction with 200 players on ground can win against 230 opposing players, IF they have better communication/tactics/strategy - like shards, or volatile beacons. It's clear that no amount of organization will help if a team is heavily outnumbered, and that's okay - it's important to reward the group that can advertise better pre-anomaly, and I think it makes physical attendance more important, which drives up numbers.

    But, like @AWildParrish said, this should be balanced with objectives where numbers are less important, and this is where designers can get creative. Average number of unique hacks/faction member, or media challenges were good examples of these. Maybe these challenges don't even tie in to the local anomaly score, but help the global score somehow - so, even if the locals know they can't win their anomaly, they will still play to help the faction win the overall thing.

  • Well and I did forget to mention, when there were more sites sometimes their scoring was a total of all points scored at the different sites, so even if you site was going to be a blood bath every point you earned went towards the score which still could help pull a faction victory. Second round of city BB events was like this and it really helps the site domination problem. Doesn't work in a single site format but having a cumulative score with multiple sites can help improve the whole "oh we are just going to get womped out there" mentality

  • ofer2ofer2 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Yeah, sorry, didnt want to give the wrong impression: I was capped inventory at the start of the anomaly and was throwing away keys to make space for more useful items :(

  • BreenzyBreenzy ✭✭✭✭

    Inventory management is one of the hardest things in the game, especially for a player who just turns up. I think temporarily increasing player inventory for on-site players would help for this. Obviously make this clear to players when registering that they will need to cull gear after.

  • Have POCs give input on the playbox. Include the local leaders in the planning of the box. The initial playbox reaction on telegram was that it was a disaster. Happy you participated in the anomaly and got a hands on experience of the lag.

  • SSSputnikSSSputnik ✭✭✭✭✭

    Couple of things - even when vetted and trusted, overall strategy can be kept from boots on ground for opsec reasons. Sometimes you don't know WHY you are doing something, but you are expected to trust the team leads directions. This does occasionally lead to arguments. Even the Team Lead may be in the dark.

    Also - comment on real time scoring - this can be a two edged sword. It's nice to know, but if you are being beaten to a pulp you may be inclined to give up. Generally experienced players can tell this though.

  • mortuusmortuus ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November 2022

    Thanks for the input ofer2, nice to see you attended the anomaly and got to see the main issue most are having, the ongoing server lag which is not fun, even for me playing casual i have daily deploy lag and its always fun when u have an apex ticking and u come to a portal where it can take like a minute to fully deploy one portal so u can link and field from it... and now many parts in world heading to winter so meaning less fun to play out in cold and having a scanner that lags and is slow isnt exactly the best combo but its good to hear you are working on it.

    If u have plans next year for those hexathlons this service issue needs to get improved because even that mode will lag badly.

    Also i dont like hearing this about agents playing for both teams ? thats just wrong, not sure how to deal with such players but to me thats just not cool at all, why be a rogue agent what fun is that ? play legit for your own team and be proud,, dont go that path further...

  • SSSputnikSSSputnik ✭✭✭✭✭

    I don't think its so much as players playing both teams, more like moles listening for intelligence/strategy.

    I've never done this but it's fun playing spot the imposter and being careful to keep voices down. Super agenty...

  • I have been to every Anomaly from Exo5 onward (except for the last Meganomaly in Germany, alas), so I have some basis for comparison (though not as much as the folks who were there for the very first ones). With that proviso, some quick observations and responses:

    1. First, I do think it's good for the game developers and others involved in the game production/promotion to eat their own dog food (as it were - not a commentary on the quality of the food!). There are things you only see by being a player on the field. OTOH, being a player also can lead to a certain degree of myopia (especially if you've only been to one or two events). So a mix of perspectives is often helpful.
    2. With respect to technical problems in LA, I actually thought they weren't all that bad compared to other Anomalies I've attended. Lags, glitches, client problems, etc. have always been there, and sometimes been worse. In particular, I think that Prime performed much better this time around - the last event I was involved with using Prime (pre-COVID), visibility and usability were nightmares. I still find the specific controls to be poorly suited to portal combat - it's too slow to switch from attack to deployment, for instance, and portal selection in tightly-packed environments can be finicky - but I only had a few cases where portal visibility was an issue, and overall the client was pretty usable. There are many design decisions regarding Prime that I'm just never going to agree with, but the incremental improvements are really adding up. It was also pretty stable for me (I think I had to reset twice, and was in intensive combat most of the time); that's going to vary by user, but my own experience was that Prime was as stable as Redacted was, or more so. The big problems we saw were all server related. The worst one that my team experienced was "stuck" resos that could not take damage: they'd just sit at some level of XM, and stay there no matter what anyone did to them. (I dropped over 100 ultras and countless bursters trying to take a portal that had this issue. Our team eventually had to give up, but not before wasting amazing amounts of resources trying to take a portal that was minimally defended except by the Glitch.) We ran into this on several occasions. Update failures also happened, as did other manifestations of lag. It's always been that way. Which is not good, mind you, but I didn't find it to be any worse than it used to be. (I don't remember encountering glitched resos before, FWIW.)
    3. With respect to people using many different apps, that's part of the fun and innovation that makes Anomaly play special. It's true that we wouldn't have to do that if the Scanner had mo'better functionality (and the lack of viable Intel is the worst of that, I think), but coming up with cool new ways to get an edge on the battlefield is an important part of Anomaly play, and killing it would remove part of the fun. This is war, not basketball. If I wanted to color in the lines, I'd have...well, probably I'd have joined ENL. (No offense.) But this is, in any event, not something I would see as a high Niantic priority to fix. (If you want to provide better functionality, fix the Intel map first. But I say, focus on making the scanner a great tool for gaming, rather than a game.)
    4. With respect to OPSEC, the idea of having "punishments" for people trying to penetrate OPSEC even by impersonation makes my skin crawl. Again, this is a war for the fate of humanity. You should assume that the other faction is going to try to get an edge. Guarding against that is, again, part of the fun. (Anyone who wants Care Bears should stick to PoGo. We're here because we don't want that experience.) To be sure, there are limits here, imposed both by applicable laws and by TOS, which is fine. But some basic subterfuge is a good thing...adds to the drama and excitement, and the feel of really being "agents" in a war zone. It also has the side effect of making agents and their communities have to care about *knowing each other*, and *meeting/engaging with* new people. This is a big, unappreciated bonus of Anomalies for the Ingress community. Just agent verification itself probably keeps many experienced players engaged, and helps bring communities together. Needing to keep OPSEC is also vital to the Ingress theme and storyline - half the Lore is about people keeping/stealing/revealing/seeking out secrets, for heaven's sake - and trying to make rules to artificially enforce it would be strongly against the spirit of the entire thing. (Compared to what happens in the Lore, someone trying to pretend to be an agent from the other faction is incredibly tame.)
    5. With respect to the impact of player counts (and what if anything should be done about them), this is always a matter of debate. What numbers there are on turnout seem to be both uncertain and closely held. I am given to understand that the disparity in LA was not that big, though my informants might be wrong. In the field, it can be very hard to tell, because what you see is often a biased sample (and because you can't always see the enemy agents from where you are standing). But that said, certain types of challenges give large returns to scale, and some don't. (NA RES has usually had, AFAIK, lower turnout than ENL, and notably did much better when we had scoring that was player normalized. Not saying that this was good or bad, but it did seem to be an effect, at least anecdotally.) I think it's OK to have some returns to scale, because it incentivizes recruitment, but obviously one wants to make it possible for smaller force to defeat a large one by being clever. Figuring out what works there is best done empirically, by varying the kinds of contests and scoring and looking at the size/score correlation. We don't have that data, but you do. (Just make sure it is analyzed by someone who actually knows how to use statistical controls.)
    6. With respect to tasks during the anomaly (sitting on a portal versus moving), I think that players vary *a lot* in their preferences here. Many Ingress players are mobility impaired, and do not want to go running around. Others...already do go running (or biking, or driving, or scooting) around! It's best to set things up in a way that supports a mix of play styles. Personally, I think that the classic, WW1-style trench warfare of heavy portal combat is anything but boring, even though you might not move so much; but it's nice to have different phases that encourage a mix. One thing I would strongly disagree with is the idea that "seeing the playbox" should be a goal. If you were sightseeing, you were doing it wrong. Save your tourist ambitions for Mission Day: during the Anomaly, you need to be focused on winning. (And anyway, as noted, many folks have a hard time getting around the playbox. So best not to assume that everyone wants that.)
    7. With respect to structuring the Anomaly so that there are a few (brief) breaks in the action, I don't think that's a bad thing. We do lose agents because they run off to the facilities and don't make it back...and it is not fun to be taking heavy fire and have a bunch of folks suddenly need to answer the call of nature. There would be an art to having them be long enough to be useful, but short enough not to **** the intensity of play (or let easily bored players wander off). This would take some experimentation to get right, but I think it could be an improvement. Closing all bars within a 2 hour radius for the duration of the Anomaly might also help with not losing agents, but this is not practical. The factions just have to work on that.
    8. With respect to gear consumed, now you know why so many of us were bitter about AXAs no longer replicating in capsules. Yes, a lot of gear is needed. I don't think much can be done about that. This is one area where I actually think it's good for Niantic to sell serious loadout packages, because it provides a reasonable way to stock up walk-in players without it being game breaking. (Buying shields/L8 bursters in normal play is very different from letting people get enough gear to participate in an Anomaly. And anyway, there are so many flash farms before the event that most players are already bulking up to abnormal levels. As they should, because Anomalies are anomalous.) If I were going to suggest something here to help new players, that would be to offer more structured ways to encourage pre-event farms that newbies without strong community ties could use. If you already went to the faction party the night before, you are probably set...but if you didn't know about that party, or that going to it could help you with gear, you'd be in bad shape. (In practice, your TL probably told you to go gather a lot of stuff. TLs always make up insanely inflated target numbers, a practice I have criticized in my own faction - it just alienates less hardcore players, to no good end. But that's not Niantic's problem.)
    9. Finally, let me repeat a suggestion I've made before about monetization. Anomalies have fantastic drama. Every veteran has all sorts of war stories from these events. And, if packaged right, I submit that non-Ingress folks would pay to watch that drama, just like they pay to watch all sorts of other things. (People pay to watch golf, for heaven's sake. It has quiet people hitting a tiny ball with a stick, so that it goes in a stupid cup. Why is that even a thing? OK, unknowable, but still, far less exciting than the XM war.) That has to be done without screwing up the game, and it has to be done in a way that is really targeted for regular viewership (rather than the little - cute - promo videos Niantic sometimes does). Rather than putting more effort into tweaking the Anomalies, you (Niantic) could do a lot more good by putting effort into *packaging what we do*, and letting the bored masses of planet Earth pay to get a taste of it. They'll never *really* know what it's like to be under heavy XM fire, hoping the exposure doesn't do god-knows-what to your sanity or cancer risk while you desperately drop ordinance into that one portal *that just has to be taken down* to save humanity, but they could pay a few bucks to stream a peek. Get that right, and you can keep funding this thing, and we can keep playing it. Win-Win.

  • SSSputnikSSSputnik ✭✭✭✭✭

    Regarding gear - often local players will donate to agents travelling to anomalies.

    Quantum rep of VR items - yes was nice, but often you had large amounts of inventory tied up in the hope that you would get to an anomaly soon. On the flipside, everyone, except cheats, are impacted the same here so, is it an issue?

  • Welcome to Ingress!

    Yes the game is much larger than just some portals and ap and the choir on these forums that might just not represent all players opinions, only the loudest.

    Happy Birthday on us all!

    Thx for a great game!

    br /Muzzgood

  • Anomalies should be played in a Sandbox, and only agents who register and physically check in on site should be able to interact with the Sandbox environment. Allow "read only" (Intel) access to non registered players. (Though I would prefer registration for intel agents... It would be a mess. ) This should allow Niantic to temporarily increase refresh rates for Intel, and make it a lot harder to cheat.

    When "rest" time comes restrict portals to only allow hacking. Maybe even enable frackers? Agents could move around the playbox but not make changes to the "arena".

  • Is there a profile of the degree of server load caused by different activities? Perhaps we could crowdsource suggestions to address the worst offenders.

    It seems there's a significant loading time for checking linkability. If we had an idea how it currently works, maybe we could come up with a more efficient algorithm.

    Realtime scoreboard would be awesome. Something which doesn't take a long time to load or require exiting the app.

    Maybe if players had something like an ostracization ranking which decayed their access within the playbox. There would have to be weighting to keep the system from being flooded by puppets, but on average if you were "part of the team", then you should have no problem keeping your ranking on the high side. This would have the unfortunate side-effect of telling unpopular individuals they were unable to play. The idea could use some work, but how else do you deal with players playing offside. Maybe an automatic rapid appeal of undesirable plays within the playbox?

    I'd agree with making things more proportionate to average player outcome. This way the smaller team isn't automatically swamped, and having competitions close to 50/50 makes them more exciting.

    Maybe have actions other than portal scans be able to trigger battle beacons earlier than the end of septicycle. Maybe have battle beacons automatically do a loot pinata to all participants which fills their inventory with a balanced spread of random gear.

    Anomaly phases could be interesting.. Like randomized challenge wheel which spins once every hour and tallies who does the most within 30 minutes, then pauses for 30 minutes for a break. Wash rinse repeat. You never know which way it's going to roll.

    I liked the boosted reward scoring on previous events. Being able to collect a badge for 160 instead of 200 actions is a nice reward.

    Maybe make resonators infinitely deployable during the event so that running out of the little things isn't so detrimental.

  • Finally a dev who actually uses their own software!!! I'm so happy about this!!

    Yes, I myself studied QA testing and I know how the thing works. But now tell me: isn't it faster, better and more intelligent to sometimes actually just simply go out and play??

    Do you love what you work in? Try it, use it, play it, not just test the individual parts of it or rely on the tester to give feedback, don't rely on the million "let's test what if..." GO OUT AND PLAY!! Thank you for learning and doing that!

    I hope you also had fun! 😅😅😅😃

    I think that what you have found out and experienced in one Anomaly is what a player suffers in daily play. This, since Redacted was not an option anymore. Now you can understand why old players hate Ingress so much. And why new players don't engage in a great community anymore. The game is toxic.

    Please, bring back the good old times! Remove cheaters without hesitation! Play it to find the daily annoyances. And hear the community. We feel forgotten.

    I love that this is a step in the right direction and I hope Niantic gives their devs more time for real world testing playing. Ingress is was not a game, so playing it should not be considered slacking, right?

    Great work, Agent Dev!

    Ps: I'm not being sarcastic, I'm genuinely happy about this. I still love this game and what it meant to me since 2014. I don't open the scanner anymore even when traveling cause it takes too much time to even try. But I would love it to come back and this seems a great step in the right direction. Keep it up!

    If I can add some feedback, worst part is not that it crashes, is that reloading takes ages while Redacted took 5 secs to get back on the map and playing, no clicks needed (Prime: returning agent account choosing when the last logon failed, no be aware of whatever ok button again for the tenth time in the last 10 minutes, I can't be aware while fighting AGAINST the scanner, no three splash screens -Niantic, then Lightshop, then Ingress, then world... or at least load location, map and player account in background while showing non interesting/important stuff... Again... For the Nth time. Speed up the login, remove steps... Then I wouldn't care about crashes. Redacted crashed a lot, no-one-cared. Prime lags: you won't logout to refresh it cause it takes time. It crashes: you still hope it will unlock itself. It glitches: you hope it will fix itself. Anything to avoid relaunching. And then you still gotta relaunch three times or more.

    BTW I liked the animation glitches, it looked very hacky. Sadly you (Niantic) removed it instead of the real glitches...

  • I would love to see a gameplay mechanic that rewards CMU.

  • SSSputnikSSSputnik ✭✭✭✭✭

    Idea, and maybe not a popular/good one.

    Make even teams by limiting ticket numbers to maximum of lowest team registrations. So ticket sales for factions cut off at opposing faction regos with more going on sale as regos increase?

  • MxxMxx ✭✭✭✭
    edited November 2022

    @ofer2 since you were surprised by the amount of non-Niantic tools we used and the registration/verification process, would you mind sharing how did YOU think such anomalies were conducted? How did you think we communicate, team build, assign tasks, etc?

  • DrHydrosaurDrHydrosaur ✭✭✭✭

    I was in a remote recharge room for this one and have been in other pre-Covid rooms.

    1) The lag and crash issues were also felt in the recharge rooms. I had to restart Ingress every 30 minutes or so, on average. Occasionally, I had to restart every few minutes, sometimes it was fine for over an hour.

    2) lag and crashes seemed similar to me as earlier anomalies using redacted. Close enough that I can’t confidently say which was better.

    3) I was surprised by the lack of clear phases/breaks in play. Even recharge rooms appreciate some down time. I can only assume this is more true on the ground.

    4) If you are considering weighting scores by faction participation numbers, it shouldn’t be a straight per capita score. This would encourage each side to minimize participation to their top agents at the expense of more casual player participation. That would be terrible. A nudge up for the smaller faction could be ok but it would have to be very thoughtfully designed to still encourage both sides to show up in numbers.

  • EvilSuperHerosEvilSuperHeros ✭✭✭✭✭

    Temp key capsules for the anomaly would be great. Make 'em purchasable. Make it so they will hold keys for a set time, but something short. Either 24 or 48 hours. Cap them at 10 max. Would be immensely helpful.

  • points 1&2: it sucks.. i hate it.. and the lag and freezing of the scanner was infuriating

    3: it's been like that for awhile.. all part of vetting and getting the right communication between the factions. it's a matter of teamwork.

    4: what's the point of having a big reveal at the Niantic after-party if you already know the results from a live score? and how would that work exactly? random announcements in the scanner while we're all trying to play? even then.. no big reveal and surprise. better to go in blind and keep working hard

    5: welcome to global ingress.. it's been like that since the very, very, very beginning.. each faction has their strategies that balance things out.. typically.. but some areas of the world are imbalanced and global results are essentially.. predictably consistent..

    6: also part of the game dynamic..

    misc: it takes a second to check a person's scanner to verify what faction they are in. not everyone wears their faction colors, and it is laughable to think you can punish someone for wearing a different color to "pretend" to be on your team.. they aren't pretending.. they ARE the other team... not their fault the others didn't bother to check if they were or not. you know this is a game were two factions are basically in war with each other, right?

    yes, having a nice break would be nice halfway... i didn't eat for awhile because I was focused on strategy.. there isn't any type of official cease-fire situation that can easily be implemented.. the playbox will and always be active during the whole time.

    the imbalance issue will always be a factor.. and for those who have played for at least the last 8 years.. there hasn't been anything to be able to remedy that. Europe.. Asia.. the Americas... there have been articles and blogs written about the entire psychology of choosing a faction... influences of that choice.. and how especially early on, Niantic failed to write a balanced story that really created a biased towards choosing one over the other... fixes to change that to balance that out have been nothing but mixed results.

    the only big thing i would like.. is having less latency.. improvements in lag, and fixing bugs that froze my scanner countless times during the anomaly.

  • MxxMxx ✭✭✭✭

    4) If you are considering weighting scores by faction participation numbers, it shouldn’t be a straight per capita score. This would encourage each side to minimize participation to their top agents at the expense of more casual player participation. That would be terrible. A nudge up for the smaller faction could be ok but it would have to be very thoughtfully designed to still encourage both sides to show up in numbers.

    @DrHydrosaur that is the most idiotic thing I've seen said on this forum in a very long time. How delusional must you be to think that a faction would deny a willing participant attendance just to keep their numbers and balance low?! 🤦

    Don't you understand that people can attend anomaly without asking permission?!

    Congratulations, you just burned any good will from that agent, they will still attend and do their own thing potentially interfering with your team's plans!

    Wow man, you really don't understand this game. Or is this how frogs actually operate?! 🙄

  • Firstly, let me echo so many others in saying thank you for coming out and hoping you enjoyed the day.

    Regarding scanner issues and server lag, this has been an issue for as long as I can remember during anomalies (my first anomaly was in 2014 and i've missed very few opportunities since then). There are error messages that are only seen during anomalies. Without a doubt, the least playable the game has ever been for me during an anomaly was during Umbra (brooklyn). After the first hour, when the other Americas sites kicked in, the game was nigh unplayable for stretches. There were some bumps in the road in LA, but it didn't strike me as appreciably worse than other sites (or maybe this is just stockholm syndrome).

    My recollection of the timing/schedule history is as follows:

    • Through 2016, anomalies were 4 hours, with 10 minute cluster measurements at the end of each hour period.
    • 2017 and Q3 of 2018 saw 4 hour anomalies consisting of 3 60-minute periods, each dedicated to one of three gameplay modes, with 30 minute breaks between the periods. The cluster stage consisted of 4 two-minute measurements at 15 minute intervals.
    • Q4 of 2018 and 2019 saw 3 hour anomalies consisting of nine periods, each containing a two minute cluster measurement (with the exception of myriad, which had no clusters). Some of the anomalies had variable length periods (2x30 mins, 3x20 mins, 4x15 mins, IIRC) and others had fixed 20 minute periods.

    Circling back to 2022 (in which i've participated in 4 beacon-only sites, 2 of the beacon+shard sites, and LA), the battle beacons seem to take the worst of both worlds in terms of length of cluster battle (9 minutes) and frequency of cluster measurements. Perhaps 30 minute beacon periods, with the beacons spawning approx 10 minutes into the period, would provide a bit of a break between measurements while also allowing for shards/targets to spawn at the beginning of each period (thus allowing for shards/targets to spawn at the start of the anomaly) and eliminating the awkward nether period at the end of LA where nothing was in play but the anomaly wasn't officially over. I'm not sure it's feasible to incorporate a formal break into an anomaly with shards without wiping the shards and targets prior to the break and restarting afterwards, and even then, teams will likely use that time to reestablish control of the playbox rather than resting (and I do not advocate going back to the 2017 dedicated period format; it's much more interesting to try to do multiple things at once and to put teams into that kind of resource/decision bind, imo).

    Relative to the other 2022 events i've attended, LA was the closest by far to capturing the ferocity of portal combat that we'd come to expect from anomalies. The previous 2022 events in which I participated were much less well-attended and the size of the play area and density of beacons was such that there was very little contention for portals. I think that this was a bigger factor than the change in beacon scoring rules to eliminate the category multiplier (though this absolutely also suppressed portal combat), but I do believe that the elimination of the multiplier was absolutely essential to the viability of using battle beacons for anomalies. Along similar lines, I think the change to best measurement scoring was a net positive as it creates more of an impetus to keep playing towards the end of the anomaly; even without a scoreboard, if one side is winning big that can be seen and felt and with a single lump score, that can encourage complacency and/or apathy in the last few beacon waves.

    For me, the density of portals and interactions left the scanner view very difficult to process during swaths of the anomaly. There were simply too many of the victory beacons in view to be able to quickly find the active beacons and shards.

    I'm fully on board with incorporating some sort of unique portal capture metric into the current anomaly rule format. Unique captures are a scoring metric that is independent of attendance. Additionally, it encourages movement and variety, rather than staying and defending a couple of spots for the whole day. I think at least one of the 2019 anomalies used the personal hexathalon scoreboard for tracking individual uniques, and reincorporating that would allow for some tracking of progress and scoring during the anomaly.

    Thank you again for sharing your feedback and impressions and for putting yourself out there for receiving comments and criticism.

  • DrHydrosaurDrHydrosaur ✭✭✭✭

    Umm, I said it would be terrible.

    Scoring based on per capita points encourages factions to discourage participation by casual players. It’s not that I want that to happen, it’s that such a scoring system rewards such strategies.

  • "As far as players pretending to be part of the other team: I wonder if there should be some larger punishment for being caught doing this."

    No, this absolutely should not be punishable at all. If y'all aren't doing your basic due diligence and are just assuming anyone in blue/green is that faction, that's on you.

    Signed, the infrognito bike agent who got the RES to hand over 300 XMP, 200 US, 50 Aegis, two VR loadout codes, and a partridge in a goddamn pear tree just by asking nicely. Basic opsec SOP, check their freaking scanner before forking stuff over!

  • We need break during the event…4hr is too long without break…

    Also I think CAT system should be adapted on BB to redress game balance.

  • I don't feel like awards in the form of an advantage in next phase for winning is a good idea, nor would a reward for losing, if a team won a phase you don't want to give them an even bigger advantage for the next round, not do you want to reward losing. Rewards such as badges, gear, or higher output restock portal would be enough of a reward. I don't think changes need to be made over imbalance of participation due to if it's artificially balanced by percentage or something like that then it would decrease the motivation for attendance. Lag and crashes definitely need fixed. And yes seeing scoring live is a great help to regular players to feel like they know what's going on. As far as the use of non-niantic tools, there is nothing to be done there because teams are always going to use the tools the see as best tools for them, and with lots of tools it comes down to how secure the team feels the tools are and a Niantic tool is never going to seem as secure. Tools get swapped out on a regular basis because either someone has made a better one or the team no longer believes a tool is as secure. One thing you didn't mention but needs fixed is the CAL system, many players traveled across country for the event and had rare opportunity to throw long links but we're denied due to CAL access which is now killing a part of the game many of us loved. Many ingress players travel long distances to play the game in areas outside of our home areas but to get there and find out it was a wasted trip because we are now denied access to these portals makes us no longer want to travel and explore new places because we don't know if we can do anything when we get there or not now. We have no way of telling if our access level is high enough before arriving. Example: a friend that hasn't played in years opened up game a week ago and first portal they tried interacting with told them they didn't have access so they closed game and probably won't ever try again, we want more people playing not less, please fix this.

  • SSSputnikSSSputnik ✭✭✭✭✭

    CAL - play a bit before going to the anomaly?

    I must say, my first anomaly - I was quite excited to be thoroughly vetted. Made me feel like I was taking part in something big/important.

    Wander up and play? No. (Well you can but you miss a lot of team experience then). You also miss team briefings and a solo player can do more harm than good even with best intentions.

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