Turn and Burn

One of the simplest lessons learned in my first month with an augmented reality game is the importance of sun protection on the back of your neck: long hair, sun screen, or cloth. This is because of the common pose of an Ingress player.

Outdoor, smartphone-based games are most popular on nice days. Rain makes both “outdoor” and “smartphone” problematic. It is a nice, sunny day, and you are trying to read your smartphone through glare. What do you do about it? You move your smartphone into shadow. What shadow is most ubiquitous on your journey? Your own. You turn away from the sun, possibly holding the phone quite close to you in the short mid-day shadows, and you bow your head over it. You aim the back of your neck directly at the sun. If you are walking through your own team’s farm, you burn less because interacting is a two-click process that requires minimal accuracy: tap portal, “hack,” next. If you are capturing territory, you are looking for the exact locations of enemy resonators, finding the right distance for deploying your own, checking portals and keys as you make links and fields, and generally spending a lot of time trying to see the exact location of small objects on your screen on sunny days.

Having done most of my gaming on computers for the past decade, it had not occurred to me that one defense in an augmented reality game is physically burning your enemies as they try to capture your territory.

: Zubon

“Gamer learns the sun exists. Story at 11.”

One thought on “Turn and Burn”

  1. This is completely why the Galaxy S5 is water resistant (1m depth, 30 mins) right? For Ingress players?

    The new iPhone will dispense sunscreen!

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