Operation Zero Cell
Date: 25-29 April, 2015
Location: PA07-Romeo-06 (Auckland, New Zealand)Prelude
In order to win the perpetual rat-race that is the septicycle, Resistance in Auckland have a tradition of traveling long distances at all hours in order to field over the city, typically using one or more anchors than require special access or equipment.
In response to this, Enlightened decided to repeat a field thrown the previous weekend, using anchors that are more remote than the resistance favourites.Field
On Saturday April 25,@Robodudenz and @Robokidnz headed out to the remote East Cape Lighthouse, to reclaim the anchor that Resistance had destroyed six days earlier. From there, in the early afternoon, they reestablished links to both Cape Reinga Lighthouse at the top of the country, and Egmont Plaque, at the top of a mountain on the west coast of the North Island, establishing a field worth 1.26M MU (and earning Robodudenz a platinum illuminator badge).A Response(?)
On the evening of the 25th, Auckland Res agents were detected on Intel enroute to East Cape Lighthouse, presumably to take down the fields. But midnight came and went, with no activity at the lighthouse. Unsure what was going on, we went to bed, thinking maybe Resistance would wait until morning to drop the fields (they were still winning the cycle, so not exactly a rush).
Morning came, and reports came in that the Res agents were back in Auckland, citing bad weather and bad reception at the Lighthouse. At this point, we expected Resistance to send agents to the slightly closer lighthouse at Cape Reinga (if they weren’t already enroute), but again, nothing happened.
Monday rolled around (a public holiday), and nothing had changed. Then around 2pm, a different Auckland Res agent appeared on Intel, near East Cape. So with fingers on recharge buttons, we waited. And waited. Then some activity was spotted at a known Res anchor. Perhaps they are planning to drop the fields and immediately throw their own? No, just seem to be key farming. More waiting. Surely they wouldn’t let us lead into the new cycle with a significant field and MU advantage?
7pm. Still nothing. Lots of rejoicing as the scoreboard refreshes with the first checkpoint of a new cycle, followed by the realisation that if Res don’t take the field down tonight, they probably won’t take it down until the end of the week.A New Initiative
As a faction, we are careful to try and cater for all play styles (which under normal circumstances is fairly easy), but city-wide fields present an issue, especially if they are long-standing. For fielders, and those keen to challenge and win septicycles, they are a necessity, but for casual players and those who like to build and maintain their neighborhood, they can really inhibit play (not to mention those who have a connector or mind controller badge just around the corner).
In order to keep things interesting, it was suggested that seeing as we can’t link or field, that we instead set a goal of destroying as many Res fields as possible, with the ultimate goal being to reduce Res cell MU to zero for at least one checkpoint. And so Operation Zero Cell was born.
On Tuesday, as agents around the city searched intel for fields to destroy, we were surprised to find that the natural turnover of portals in the days prior had already eliminated the bulk of Resistance MU - so much so that the typical 50-100k standing MU was already down to a paltry 6.8k MU. Intel scanning resulted in a list of only 30 or so fields or field groups, and already that was shrinking as agents mopped up remaining fields near them.
By Tuesday night, the list had been whittled down to single digits, comprised mostly of fields in limited access areas, or away from roads or regular play areas.
The following morning, agents put their names down to clear the final few fields, and at 1:15pm,@Alnilamb destroyed the last fields at Auckland Botanic Gardens. Now all that was left to do was wait for the 4pm checkpoint to get confirmation of the zero MU.
4pm rolls around. 1 MU. “FUUUUUUUUUUUU!!! FIND IT!”.
30 mins later, Intel servers straining under the load of all of Auckland EN scouring the map, the remaining 1 MU field is found in the small town of Kaiwaka. The good news: one of the anchors is at 14% charge, and will decay in less than 24hrs. The even better news: intel logs reveal the portal was capped at 4:35pm, 7 days earlier! So intel was refreshed a few minutes later, and boom! It was gone!
Confident that every Res field had now been accounted for, we waited with baited breath for the 9pm checkpoint, at which point, Intel confirmed that our operation had been a success, and Res MU had indeed been reduced to zero!
Big thanks to all the agents who took part (knowingly or not!) and continued to play on under the field, from Whangarei in the north, to Drury and Waiuku in the south!Local players have remarked that this is possibly the first time in the world that a cell containing a major city (population 1.5M) with two thriving factions (2 anomalies hosted) has had standing MU for one faction reduced to zero!+John Hanke +Brian Rose +Joe Philley +Anne Beuttenmüller +Matilde Tusberti #ingress