30.05.2016 15:47


Lose weight by playing a virtual reality game

Autor: Kristýna Klazarová | Kurz: English section | Kategorie: Features and other

Fog lazily rolls over a grassy area. The deadly early-morning peace at one Brno's streets is bleak in the humid air. One man is standing there, his smartphone glued to his hand, silently waiting. Suddenly a car dives into this little part of the universe. He jumps in. A five-member group of heroes are about to start their journey to gain control over local portals.

Ingress is a game based on virtual reality overlapping the real world. There are two teams, the team of greens and the team of blues, who are trying to get all the portals under their control. They can either hack or conquer portals - only enemy’s portals in the latter case - and gain experiences or weapons and other objects. Portals are usually chained to the places of interest. Churches, memorials and other historic building are almost all portals. There's even graffiti that holds a portal at the train station at Královo pole.

The philosophy of a team

The teams have different philosophies. One of the green players, in Czech republic also called „Žabičky“, is Lukáš Šrom.  He chose the green team, because he disagreed with the philosophy of the blues, who are also called „Šmoulové“.

„The portals lead into another world. Šmoulové wants to destroy them, because they are scared of the alien invasion or the influence that the portals could have had on our world. We want to use them to master our technologies and so on. To get humanity on another level,“ he explained.

Friendly players everywhere

Even though the game has been available since the end of 2013, Lukáš got into the game for the first time a year ago. He registered a few of his own portals back then, but after that he stopped. He came back to the game recently. In less than two weeks since his comeback he started participating in a group event st Brno. There’s a FB group that informs its members about interesting events. They sometimes take one or two cars and conquer together.

 “I was invited to Austria. It’s in two weeks from now. I am thinking about it, but I have an exam that I have to study for,” he said, shrugging his shoulders.

Run for your life

Not every portal is easily accessible. Sometimes you have to stand in the middle of the road, sometimes you have to climb over a fence. It makes for very funny stories, but sometimes it can bring you into trouble.

“I found a portal on some playground. It was fenced and I had to get on the top of a wall to get close enough. There was a guy who asked me what I am doing. I was focused on a game so I said that I just destroyed their portal and was leaving. He thought that I was a vandal and wanted to call a police,” narrated Lukáš.

What do you need to get in the game?

To play Ingress you need a smartphone with internet and GPS. You have to download the game, get registered and choose your team. Now you can play, meet new people and live simultaneously in two different realities all time breathing.

However Ingress is not the first game based on your GPS location. There are many games like that.

In 2000 the GPS locating evolved enough to start the very first game – geocaching. As the opposite of the Ingress, geocachers are looking for tangible hideouts where they can even obtain special coins. You have to travel a lot and fulfill the tasks, but all in all, it is the very first ancestor of Ingress and it is probably more widespread than Ingress. Which is understandable as it is 13 years older. Although for geocaching you need real investments and a place to put the „box“, so games using virtual reality are more likely to expand.

If you decide to play the game right now I have a piece of advice for you. Stay focused. You never know who the player is. THEY ARE EVERYWHERE.

Klíčová slova: Ingress, game, GPS,

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