Subscriptions in Ingress
There was a suggestion that Niantic was interested in ideas for subscriptions for Ingress. Here are two subscriptions I would approve of, each targeted at $5 per month price points.
Supporter Badge Subscription
This is as simple as it gets. You like Ingress and want to support it's existance. Like a Patreon or something like that. For every month you support Ingress, you get a tick on the new Supporter badge, which would have the same 1/6/12/24/36 bronze/silver/gold/plat/onyx system of the IFS badge.
An easy criticism of this is that it's "Pay to Win". And in some sense that is is true since you're directly paying for the badge. But really, 3 years for an onyx badge doesn't seem like "winning" in any meaningful sense of the word. More meaningful is the public declaration that you're proud to support Ingress and Niantic.
This subscription can also come with a multiple-user passcode per month. This would serve as a "thank you for being a supporter" token from Niantic, and also a way for the subscriber to share the passcode with friends. Sharing passcodes helps keep people interested in the game, advertises the subscription program, and gives the subscriber an avenue to help a few folks in their community.
Intel Package Subscription
Unlike the previous subscription, this is targeted for specific benefits to the subscriber besides just warm-and-fuzzy feelings. The goal here is to find things that power users want that don't unbalance the game too much.
- Advanced Operations Webapp
- Advanced statistics
- Capture/visit/cooldown portal decorations
- Intel game layer
- Online key management and recharging
The operations webapp would be a much improved version of the current Intel map to aid in the planning and execution of complex cooperative operations. A slick UI that let you draw operations and see how they are progressing and what may be interefering with them. Subscribers can sponsor three operations at a time, but would be free for everyone else. The sponsor wouldn't have to be the intel operator. Consult with active op planners about what they'd want for this.
Advanced statistics would be for the data nerds in the audience. I would like to see far more data about my activity. I have 13000 unique captures (discovrered portals, unique visits, etc)? Let me see the list, show me on the map! What percentage of time have I owned that portal by my house in the past year? Show me a map of where I've walked this month. Which portals do I spend most of my XM recharging? Which portals/links/fields are ticking up for my Max Time Held stats? Show me a map of my missions completed, mission days, anomalies attended, first saturdays. Etc etc.
The decorations are more simple. Show me on the map screen when portals are in cooldown mode, show me if the portals are unique for captures or visits. You have it for Pokemon and Wizards, now bring that to Ingress please!
All I really want for Christmas is an optional low-graphics, high-contrast map mode. 2D, top-down view. No fancy graphics, basically just the intel street map view with an "actions" button to fire etc. Yes, I want to pay more for less. Ingress to me isn't about the scanner looking cool, it's about the changes I can make on the map. I want fast, simple actions and clear, simple graphics so I can do what I want quickly (burst, deploy, hack) and move on to the next portal with the least amount of idle time possible so I can keep on walking. And I'm willing to pay for the privilege.
Lastly, I want to be able to manage my keys from an online interface. I want to be able to download a list of my an entire set of keys -- regardless of being in a capsule or key locker -- so people can build tools to coordinate with friends (maybe part of the aforementioned intel webapp, but also others). Let me recycle, reorganize, and even recharge them from this interface.
Who knows I might just have the european fracker record as a supporter... That badge I would like! Fracker Onyx. Only Niantic knows 😁
Instead of a supporter badge that ticks up let month I would do Supporter Exclusive Avatars. Also I would give subscribers discounts on anomaly participation.
@NinthAnt ideally what would you want included in your monthly 7,000 CMU supporter medal? We're working on subscriptions but it will take some time. One thing we could test in the meantime wouldn't technically be a subscription through the Play Store or App Store, but is closer to the kind of medal you're describing.
For example, what if it were 7,000 CMU and purchasable once/month, and included:
What should the item bundle include, if anything?
10 common heatsinks
What about a (Common) bundle of their choice? From the in app store options? A Fracker even. I think this would make players more acquainted with purchasing from the in game store. Then it's a slippery **** to purchasing items more often.
Its the same concept of vendors who encourage you to touch their product because it makes you more likely to buy it. Just like "Try Me" buttons on kids toys.
@NianticBrian as long as you are here and we have your attention, here's how I would do subscriptions:
-Do it as a recurring payment on the Play store through a credit card.
-give subscribers access to exclusive Avatar Options (no medal)
-monthly detailed activity email, breaking down activity points and AP gained per day.
-free anomaly participation.
-10 free common heatsinks delivered the first Saturday of every month.
-10% discounts on item bundles in the store.
The reason my post suggests a multi-use passcode instead of an item bundle is that having a "supporter passcode day" in the various communities would be a fun little mini-event. For that passcode idea, a small number of L8 bursters and resos like you see in the mix of standard passcodes, like maybe 10 of each with 5 uses for different people would be fun but not unbalanced. Enough to be interesting but not really tip the scales, you know?
Given that you're still building out subs and need something temporary, I'm not sure I like the idea of bundling that equivalent amount with L8 gear for the supporter. That makes it feel like you're directing paying for L8 gear and undermines the spirit of farms and cooperation required to get that gear normally. So maybe something like viruses or hack mods or frackers?
I do think the medal should go to onyx though, even if it takes a multi-year time frame to achieve. That gives people incentive, as you maybe know some of us agents are very odd people and will do ludicrous things for an onyx but ignore a gold. I would certainly be far less excited if it didn't have the possibility of ever getting to onyx. That possibility matters more to me than any item bundle.
Not every agent has the wealth to contribute to an onyx medal either and it would be a shame to see agents locked out just because their personal circumstances don't let them personally financially support the game through a subscription
This is a terrible idea. The idea is that ingress should remain free to play. I personally don’t think that any features should be locked behind a subscription service. A certain other game locked content behind one and some people complained. locking content behind paywalls is bad.
It’s completely optional and unnecessary. 3yrs is so far out that it’s impractical to rely on it for levelling compared to the many easier badges. What I describe far less difficult to obtain than Anomaly or NL or MD badges, which require substantial travel costs far beyond $5/mo.
It's literally like a character medal. Even if it can help with level ups, it's slow enough that it won't matter. As long as it doesn't show up as a locked medal until you get bronze, it's fine.
@NianticBrian the 10 CHS idea suggested earlier in this discussion would a nice gesture. Not too wild but very handy.
It's about pride. I could afford a subscription but not every dedicated player can. Anomaly, Mission Day, Nl-1331, Operation Clear Field, Stealth OPS, Intel OPS, Prime Challenge, and OPR: Live all cost money or take personal investment like travel. No need to add another money medal.
I would be fine with a 7000cmu subscription that only shows an extra line in the stats "subscribed for x months"
No additional perks, nothing.
You have to remember that the cost of 7000 CMU is more than a day's wages in some countries such as India or Ukraine. When you look at PPP that's like asking somebody in the USA to pay $181 per month.
This was one of the criticisms of charging €/$15 plus service fee and taxes for the anomaly. It might not be much in the US or western Europe but that was three days' wages for some people (which would be like charging somebody in the USA around $550 for an anomaly ticket).
An iPhone costs more in India then it does in Europe, why aren't you complaining to Apple?
Same goes for most products.
If it is too costly, maybe there are other things that are worth your money more.
Which is why iOS is 2% of the market in India, compared to 22% globally. But seriously, how do you think an American would react if a monthly subscription was $180 and an anomaly ticket cost $550?
Logically, I would say they wouldn't buy them and spend their money elsewhere.
But seeing how everybody is already in a debt, I would see people still paying for them.
I'm not sure where the conflict of interest is here.
This subscription based method is optional. Just like everything currently in the store is optional. Niantic isn't forcing anyone to buy anything currently offered in the store and this optional subscription based method is going to be no different. This subscription based method isn't going to be game changing for anyone nor will it benefit subscribers to the point of unfairness. As a matter of fact, I see more valid criticism in denying subscribers of any perks at all.
If a player who has the desire and means to support a game they love is given that opportunity to support the game, let them do it. Many games already offer optional subscription based options (look at Wargaming) that are $30 USD a month and have actual perks such as double XP and multiplied in game currency. Do players complain? People like to complain, so probably. But this again is optional.
Bringing up the anomaly to compare to this is irrelevant. The anomaly was a controversy for many other reasons than just money and that is set aside for a different forum.
Give players a web profile to watch and share all badges and missions/banners.
I am SO for this. Just don't make it expensive. Give me a 5 dollar a month option that I can afford. I don't need a bunch of stuff included with it, just a badge. Maybe make a fancy badge for a higher subscription amount, and a more bland badge for the 5 bucks a month option.
That's a good idea, @NinthAnt and @NianticBrian !
It is because of Play store's and Google Pay's rewards, that was subscription about Ingress Prime's money and credit card, like me!
Even, the whole medals!
Good Luck, fellow agents!
Possibility to edit the profile page like sorting medals, exclusive skins, more avatar images. This wouldn’t be pay to win and would make lot of players happy.
If you started with the monthly purchase option incrementing a badge, please make sure that the badge is the same and continues to increment if you do a proper subscription. Seer -> Recon was painful, and there's no reason why Seer shouldn't be reinstated at this point, especially with PoGo reviewers coming onboard.
Also, I'd prefer something other than just gear and a badge tick. The Intel enhancement would be where I'd want my subscription money to go. Put more effort into the API for Intel, add an Inventory read-only view including keys, provide Uniques on the map etc. The Intel Map is 30% of the gameplay in Ingress, and it hasn't had anything more than 1% of the work on it.
Scrapers get all the information they want out of it, but those of us following the rules are held back. Give us a real API, constrained how you want it, with real rules and controls on what we can do.
Get a grip
I think a great Value would be to increase the droprate or Items or increase the dropoutput. In that way only players that actively play have benefits and they have to get it by play, so its not an "buyable" advantage only.
Also Options like:
are a good way to approach players Intresst without ruining the gamepaly too much.
I even could see Bundles with VR Items as long as they are 1 time buy Items.
The Pricing I think could be by regional code. So all player have similar access, but even if not. A fixed amount will not change gamplay as eigther people in one are can but it or not. But as the core gameplay is not touched but the "Support Bundle" no player will miss out on gameplay. Quantity and comfort may vary, but hey who plays for Comfort ;)
working servers with update and new contents should be a requirement to ask a monthly fee.
Asking fees without counterpart won't work
Once the app functions, with enough servers to eliminate lag, then you can even begin to consider the subscription.
IF that ever happens, you may be able to tempt veteran users with Redacted.
I would pay up to 4× your proposed subscription price if it was a redacted like platform. For those of us who hate everything visually about Prime, and find the menu "improvements" to be eclipsed by a heaping mound of awful ideas poorly executed, we're pretty much done with the game. I wish Niantic would have started working on a working replacement instead of trying to reinvent a game many of us already enjoyed. I guess I'll be giving my money to Steam?
These items would be something I would be interested in!
1) More capacity, would be awesome! Maybe more key lockers or even media lockers.
2) Pin/password protected capsules to avoid others from accessing hear unless it's picked up the intended agent
3) Teleport capsules where you can send an agent gear or maybe keys, obviously they would have to be limited to one per month or something.
4) Perhaps a virus that allows an agent to place more than the normal number of Resonators or shields. So to create a higher level portal.
5) Ability to create a temporary or agent only non-linkable portal or supply depot.
6) Quantums that reproduce at a faster rate and/or Very Rare Items
What about bringing back redacted on a subscription service 🤔