Aurora Challenge - estimating a total of 36.235 million points

DrThodDrThod ✭✭✭
edited August 2019 in General

I was pretty convinced that the overall goal for the Aurora Challenge of 36 million is just too high and that we more likely end up with around 30 million points max. I therefore spend a few hours and researched / did some back of envelope calculations / made some educated assumptions - and put it all together.

What I got was 36.235 million points - which surprised me. Aurora certainly won't be a blow-out challenge like Myriad (on which I base my calculations). So in my view it will be close, very close.

You can read how I calculated the 36.235 million here:

Each of my assumptions easily can swing it 10% either direction - so it will be interesting to follow the progress how it truly develops and if we defeat Aurora or not.

I thought I share - and happy to get feedback / suggestions for improvements.

Edit: And this was an article I wrote yesterday about planning the challenge as well as strategies



  • vidiconvidicon ✭✭✭✭✭

    This is a really thoughtful analysis. I'm really impressed. In general I think your assumptions are reasonable, but overall I think you are a bit conservative.

    I think the most conservative assumption in your analysis is the assumption that 20% of participants in the Myriad challenge will sit this one out because they don't glyph hack. The 20% of agents who don't glyph based on overall agent-stats data likely does not transfer to those who push to get a badge for a challenge, so I'd expect those who have higher tiers of Myriad Hacker to be badge completionists and are much more likely to have or be on their way toward onyx translator. That said, I'm sure some of the 29 million unique hacks in Myriad came from people who weren't actively participating in the challenge but just naturally hacked as part of their daily activities. I don't know how much each camp of agents contributed to the 29 million result, but I do think the fact that 20% of agents don't glyph maps poorly to the assumption that 20% of the Myriad unique hacks were from agents who don't glyph. So split the difference and call that parameter 90%, and you land at 40.7 million.

    Also, coming at it from a different angle, I'd tend to assume that Niantic wants us to hit the target for storyline/game management purposes and unlock the reward. Given that they presumably did their own backend analysis with a lot more data than we can see, they could have a pretty good assumption of where agents will land. If I were them, I'd want to set the target at a number that was safely achievable, but probably less decisive than Myriad. If they were, for example, targeting a 10% margin of error, that signals they expects us to get to about 40 million.

  • DrThodDrThod ✭✭✭

    @vidicon great comments. We should make a sweep stake - all agents can post their best guess. I even would offer some reward - capsule full of items - if the winner is in South-East England, comes to London FS or Antwerp anomaly.

    As Contra points: I’m not sure how representative agents stats are / what bias they have. I was surprised about the number of 15 glyph/hack.

    This place might attract more power gamers.

    About Niantic - I would agree that they rather set an achievable target. But Myriad was 13 million which we blew away - so they had to increase the numbers to make it more challenging- and might have gone a small bit too far.

    We did 125% more during Myriad.

    But right now all is just educated guesswork. So who else is putting down a number?

    I’m only accepting them before the first 12 hour result is out as after that is a lot easier.

  • CliffMCliffM ✭✭✭✭✭

    I am curious how the hack challenge was affected by accounts that were not real. (Bots) I don't know if bots are sophisticated enough to glyph hack portals, or they just go for bulk hacks.

    Niantic claims to have banned 22,000 accounts (real and fake), so that may affect the outcome as well.

  • mortuusmortuus ✭✭✭✭✭

    does anyones counter show up ? i hacked a portla correct and only myriad shows...

  • StranditStrandit ✭✭✭

    The Myriad challenge progress curve wound up being less flat than I would have expected from bots. It was pretty flat till we reached the target, but I don't think there were really enough data points to form a conclusive opinion. Imagine an eloquent shrug here.

    Looking forward to seeing how this one goes. Either way, it's a good sign that Niantic is back to running periodic events with consequences. This is pretty vital for a F2P game's vitality.

  • EvilSuperHerosEvilSuperHeros ✭✭✭✭✭

    I wonder if this calculation also enters in the amount of time an agent will have to spend to unlock each tier of badge in their respective play areas. Many places don't have large portal clusters, some do, but still that is quite a bit of time to glyph a portal, then go back and build it to L2 and glyph again, and if you are with others, making sure others don't upgrade the portals like they would normally do.

    I'm kinda at the eh stage of, do I really want to even unlock this one? Is the badge designer a little hung up on Tron? Still no Onyx badge option. meh.

  • JosmanuJosmanu ✭✭✭

    someone explain me what i need to do to get this gold badge because i am confused, am i supposed to go and glyph hack five times the same portal to get 5 miserable points from each portal?

  • CliffMCliffM ✭✭✭✭✭

    1 point, for a successful glyph hack on an individual portal, for each of the different length sequences, up to a max of 5 points:

    • Level 0/1 (1 glyph) - 1 point
    • Level 2 (2 glyphs) - 1 point
    • Level 3/4/5 (3 glyphs) - 1 point
    • Level 6/7 (4 glyphs) - 1 point
    • Level 8 (5 glyphs) - 1 point

    Sweet spot - get 3 points per portal if you are by yourself:

    1. Start with a level 0/1 portal.
    2. glyph (+1 point)
    3. build to a level 2 portal
    4. glyph (+1 point)
    5. build to a level 3/4/5 portal
    6. glyph (+1 point)
  • TheFarixTheFarix ✭✭✭✭✭

    Event badges have only go up to gold. Still wonder if the old badges will get a redesign/refresh using the new color scheme.

  • DrThodDrThod ✭✭✭

    The first 12 hour result is out - and it looks bleak. I will look into the numbers a little bit later and produce an updated prediction. But it seems we rather go towards <20 million now.

    There were several issues with this first number why we have to be cautious:

    1) Half an hour play time missing (-4 or 5%)

    2) Boosted by non-reset values (+1 or 2%)

    3) There was a pattern during Myriad where likely due to play patterns around the world each second measurement was higher. This could be up to -10% - but I will need to check the actual data

    4) Numbers did go down over time - this was less pronounced as I would have expected - but it should rather get worse

    5) There was a weekend boost in the data - alas not enough to compensate for the shortfall

    6) Players might rally and boost it

    More in a few hours. My very first own experience was also rather daunting. I was pleased to spot another player boosting some of my portals just a day ago in town - only to find out he upgraded a lot neutral ones as well. On the bright side - this might enable some 4-glyph points for me which are rare in my own town. On the downside - my planned round of the North of town to do 3 points got shelved.

  • KatthKatth ✭✭✭

    I think what you need to take into consideration is that the rules of the challenge are somewhat more complicated than any other previous challenge. We've seen a few local players that simply find the challenge too difficult or too challenging and aren't motivated enough to go out and settle for the bronze medal if they get any medal at all.

  • GoblinGranateGoblinGranate ✭✭✭✭✭

    I agree: rules are quite tricky and very hard to accomplish. If your area is fully deployed by your faction, you are likely to miss a lot of points.

    Perhaps if it would have followed the same dynamic as Myriad, requiring X glyph points from different portals, being each portal hackeable only once...

    I like this challenge, though: requires much more team play, effort, attention and power of will that any other challenge made before (yes, even EXO5 was easier than this).

  • pitareiopitareio ✭✭✭

    +1, it took much longer than usual to understand, and then explain to our communities what it is all about. This "unique glyph sequence length" notion is not intuitive at all.

  • mortuusmortuus ✭✭✭✭✭

    checkpoint 2 is out and we are still behind... 2,3m global vs snapshot aim of 3,2m...

  • DrThodDrThod ✭✭✭
    edited August 2019

    Well - we don’t know yet how far we are behind as progress was either 1.036 million or 1.568 million - depending if you look at points gained or points still needed.

    Both is too low to reach the goal. The lower is more in line with Myriad. The higher would give at least some hope for a respectable result.


  • vidiconvidicon ✭✭✭✭✭

    I'd expect things to accelerate as it becomes the weekend, so I'm reserving judgment for a few more measurements. The next measurement will include Saturday morning in Asia, but it's really the one after that when I hope/expect things to pick up.

    That said, going off chatter in my local chats a lot of people seem to be put off by this challenge and grumbling about sitting it out. So I am a lot more worried about hitting the goal than I was yesterday.

  • ArtilectZedArtilectZed ✭✭✭✭✭

    I'm only aiming for 100. If I get more than that, it's by chance.

  • vidiconvidicon ✭✭✭✭✭

    Out of curiosity, what level did you get for Myriad? I just did a poll in a few chats I'm in (what tier did you get for Myriad, and what do you expect to get for Aurora?), and I found that the vast majority of people anticipate hitting the same tier for Aurora as they did for Myriad, with only a small number expecting to slide down a tier. That surprised me - I was expecting to see a bunch of people aiming lower this time around, but at least in my informal poll it doesn't seem to be the case.

  • ArtilectZedArtilectZed ✭✭✭✭✭

    161 for Myriad.

  • DrThodDrThod ✭✭✭

    It would be great if Niantic could correct their spreadsheet - so we would truly know were we are right now.

    I try to take advantage of the challenge and create my own dataset of glyph hacks for drops (and keys). Slows me down even more - but just finished getting all the snapshots into a spreadsheet. The nice part - it allows me some 'free' analysis of what I'm doing. And I see it as long term investment in a dataset I created myself.

    High level portals are rare in my area. Still on my todo list - visit all level 6/7 portals in my town (before RES takes them down - one already disappeared today). The heavy tilt towards level 1/2 is me going to some neutral areas today and building them up.

    Not a single portal yet that I hacked >3 times (I only count hacks that could produce a point). I aim to get at least 5 points on one portal - but I might have to travel for that and might have to target carefully a Resistance portal and take it down slowly.

  • CliffMCliffM ✭✭✭✭✭

    @DrThod I enjoy reading your posts and analysis. I hope you continue to do it.

  • DrThodDrThod ✭✭✭

    @CliffM Thanks - these are the comments that keep you going.

    I just added my latest rant - I mean blog entry here:

    My prediction model based on progress currently estimates 13 or 16 millions. Two values as the spreadsheet still has an error in it and I can't tell what the true progress so far has been:

  • mortuusmortuus ✭✭✭✭✭

    still behind after third checkpoint... wow :(

  • DrThodDrThod ✭✭✭
    edited August 2019


    On a positive note - I now have proof (via snapshots) that you can redo a failed glyph attempt and still get a point. Not that this will help us (enough) in the grand picture. Will write it up later.

    But yes - we are WAY behind.

    To put this into perspective - during Myriad the highest checkpoints (in order) were

    4, 2, 6, 1, 3

    3 of the highest 5 are already past us - and we are behind. Two high scorers are coming now with checkpoint 4 (next) and checkpoint 6. The even ones tend to be higher by 30% - likely better time of day to play. There is also a weekend boost - the reason that checkpoint 4 was the highest overall - followed by 6. This is against the trend that overall you can expect numbers to go down as it gets more difficult to score uniques.

    There will be a flurry of action in the last 2 days for agents still trying to get their medal before the event ends. There was an uptick in Myriad as well. But we are likely way, way too far behind by then.

    Edit: To put it in a different way (I still don't know which numbers are right) we did 44%, 69%, 55% or 44%, 45%, 42% at each checkpoint compared to Myriad. We need an average of 124% compared to Myriad to be successful. The average 124% isn't exactly true as high Myriad checkpoints have a higher weight. But that makes it worse that we under performed now on three of the top five checkpoints. The 124% already are at >130% compared to Myriad and with each failed checkpoint this gets worse. I would say we already won't make it with the current set of rules. We would need some +3-4 million for the next checkpoint to convince me otherwise. We did 2.3 million at checkpoint 4 during Myriad. Even an increase to 2.5 million means we still fall behind - and that is a tall order looking at the first three checkpoints.

    Post edited by DrThod on
  • CornwuffCornwuff ✭✭✭

    Myriad was a much easier event. Hack portals. Probably 80% of my hacks were drive-bys. That is impossible to do for this event. It requires way more time investment per portal.

    I achieved the highest badge for the Myriad event. I might get to 100 points for this event. Maybe.

  • DrThodDrThod ✭✭✭
    edited August 2019

    It gets interesting

    There is a factor of exactly 1.3 between the first set of numbers and the second set (assuming you add checkpoint 1 and 2). We are still way, way off. But my prediction based on Myriad hardly budges. I had to display extra decimal points to spot a difference in the average compared to Myriad. So far we have: 44%, 69%, 55%, 56% or 44%, 45%, 42% and 43%.

    I wonder if the 1.3 is a fudge factor to compensate for possible bot activity (then set 1 is the measured value - but set 2 what they assume really was done) or this is a (failed) attempt to Calvinball the event by adding an extra 30% after the lacklustre checkpoint 1 - but they forgot to apply the value to both sets of numbers. That would explain the jump at checkpoint 2 if the 1.3 was applied retroactively.

    Unfortunately we would need a factor of 2.8 and not 1.3 right now if my predictions on the second set are correct as we seem to do a pretty constant 42-45% compared to Myriad and we would need 124%.

    These numbers are not typos for sure.

    Edit: The numbers now got corrected and the official number is the first one.

    Post edited by DrThod on
  • Myriad was fun, specially because hardcore explorers can carry an event like that, but hardcore glyphers can't carry this one. It's not about glyphing points, it's about unique sequence points (if we can call it that way).

    I always glyph, 98% of my hacks are glyph hacks, but this is a new level, we need to glyph each portal more than one time, at specific levels. So it's way way way more time consuming than hack everything and go, it's gear consuming (i ended up the event almost without resonators to level up portals) and it's patience/time consuming (its faster to hack 100 portals, than glyph hack 100 portals). I can reach easily 2000 to 2500 points of glyphs points on a saturday playing session, but I know that most part of normal players can't do the same, after 30 minutes of glyphing they need to take the eyes of scanner and rest a bit, and in this we are not taking into account the patience that you need to track levels of portals and level them up carefully. Since this event is more time consuming, people will take more time to do it than the Myriad, we should take that into account in checkpoints too, I did the myriad together with 2 more players in 7hours after the event starts, this one I only finish yesterday night (I skip two days of playing due to work issues, even with that is barely impossible to do this event in less than 10 hours).

    About the maths they are right (was really good to find your blog, love it!), but you didn't count one factor, 90% of Europe is in vacations in August, so I doubt that those 90% of people will do more than needed for their badges.

  • Wilde76AWilde76A ✭✭✭

    I hit my 1000, but am pretty pooped at the end of it. I doubt I will try to extend that much personally, one other agent in my state has hit it to my knowledge. This is a tough badge, I imagine a lot of your super hard core players are likely hitting the 1k now and dropping production. What I liked about this challenge was that it really stretched me out in terms of not only glyphing, but really it was a deploy - mod - micro field challenge as much as anything trying to maintain low inventory levels and avoid recycling as much as possible. I was down on it a little at first, but having achieved it and looking back on the weekend's play, think that overall this was a very cool badge / challenge and I'm very glad they keep making the 3rd tiers difficult.

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