You have just read a blog post written by Jason McIntosh. If you enjoyed it, please anonymously acknowledge your visit by tapping the little star button underneath it.
Thank you kindly for your time and attention today.
I published a 2,500-word essay over on The Gameshelf (the long-running blog-space I share with Andrew Plotkin) about my week playing Ingress, Google’s augmented-reality (and slightly alternate-reality) game.
I had terrific fun for the span of a single weekend, but it ended up souring on me quickly. Before a week had passed, I had deleted the game from my phone, and found the willpower to keep it off. My problems with Ingress stemmed from how I found myself unable to stop playing the game. I don’t refer to addictive, repetitive play, here, even though it does involve a bit of level-up grinding. Rather, I mean that I felt literally unable to enter a state where I was not playing Ingress. I would put my phone away, I would get back to work, and yet I was still playing Ingress. I found this total bleed-through of game and life initially novel, then uncanny, and finally uncomfortable, especially once I started interacting with other local players. This culminated in an angry and cowardly action my part, the last thing I did within the game world.
Before describing this negative effect any further, I shall describe three inarguably positive experiences I enjoyed via Ingress during that first weekend.
Meta: That essay is the first significant post I’ve made to the The Gameshelf since I revived this, my personal blog, last December. I wondered if perhaps I should cross-post it, or just post it here instead of there. I ultimately decided to see how it felt to keep my occasional games-heavy writing on Gameshelf for now, and simply linking to it from this blog, much as I also do from Twitter. I don’t expect that my posts there will ever become so frequent that I’ll start finding this pattern irritating or inappropriate.
Next post: I read: Schild’s Ladder
Previous post: I read: The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet
If a page elsewhere on the web responds to or otherwise mentions this post, you may provide its URL here.