Sunday, July 14, 2013

Ingress: Why I Joined The Enlightened

For those who have heard of the new mobile game (well, relatively new, as in closed-beta-release last November), Ingress, I scored an invite, and not from any old player, but from an application I sent to Niantic HQ. (If you are somewhat familiar with the game, skip the next four paragraphs.)
For those who haven't heard of it, or seen the adverts, it's a relatively new global ARG.
ARG stands for "alternate reality game," or "augmented reality game," and it's not terribly different from an RPG (role-playing game), but the two should not be confused. ARGs are played within the real world, using the game interface to interact with an alternate or enriched version of the real world. Most (not all) ARGs require the use of GPS to locate key places within the real world to interact with the interface.

And that's how Ingress works. Not too unlike geocaching, except all of the "caches" are virtual.

Within Ingress are two "teams," the Resistance and the Enlightened, and that brings me to the point of this post (which, surprising to some, maybe) wasn't to introduce you to this game, but to share my justification for joining the Enlightened.

While I can get on board with resistance movements, I don't do so blindly, like too many bandwagon-jumpers. I educate myself first. Yes, there are many resistance movements I support, even though I am not actively involved in any (except that of excessive governmental snooping, go read my post on that).

I ask my opponents in Ingress: do you know what you're resisting?

Other than change itself, I can see no entity that you might resist. If you don't know what you're resisting, how can you know that resistance is the better choice?

On the other side is the Enlightened. Enlightenment doesn't equate to Mind Washed. It levels with Educated and Informed. The enlightened, outside of this ARG, are seekers of wisdom, completeness, life-wide satisfaction. At least, that's where my Maslovian beliefs lead me.

If that's what you're resisting, then you made the wrong choice. There are no "buts" about it. You cannot properly resist something without first seeking to discover what it is you're fighting against. All you're doing is following others.

What if those others, the ones you're following were deceived? It's easier to trick the uneducated masses than to subject the informed to propaganda. You (the Resistance) are too busy fighting the Enlightened to have any opportunity to fight whatever it is out there that's coming.

It's one thing to fight what's coming; it's quite another to fight those who are trying to discover what's coming. Sorry folks, but you're fighting the wrong war.

More Ingress-related posts
If you want to read more about games I've played, you can find mobile game reviews here and video game reviews here.