How to level up faster: Fieldwork

Welcome to Ingress!

Let me tell you, the first two levels of Ingress sucks. Your L1 and L2 bursters' explosions can't reach more than 2 resonators, and they make only up to 300 points of damage.  The game promises lots of explosions, but in the first two levels all you get are water balloons. :(

(Note: For an intro to Ingress, read first waffl3's guide thingy http://goo.gl/37AFp . What follows is a more a lesson for day two than day one.)

So your goal in the first two levels of Ingress is to pass the first two levels. To get to level 2 you need 10,000AP. To get to level 3 you need another 20,000AP. Once you're in level 3, then your bursters are better.  At the first two levels, there are only three ways to level up:

1. Hack enemy portals for 100AP each. This is the worst way because you need to hack three hundred of them to reach your goal. It will take you weeks. The only advantage is that you harvest much more items than #2 and #3.
2. Meet up with an experienced player. He will take down the enemy portal with his bursters, and then let you install resonators on it. You get between 1750-2360AP, he gets 1120++ AP. (For ordinary enemy portals he obviously has the shorter end of the stick.) He may even supply you the resonators, especially if you don't do, or never did, #1 and #3. To look for an experienced player, ask in your local faction chat. Be careful when posting your personal information in public chat and be careful when meeting with strangers.
3. Create fields for 1536AP each.  If you complete a triangle with the Create Link command, you get 1536AP. Sometimes, you complete two triangles, and that's 2813AP. Besides levelling you up fastest, this one you can do alone, gains you plenty of items, and is the focus of the rest of this post.

How to create fields faster

The Intel Map http://www.ingress.com/intel is your tool, your treasure map.  Here is the easiest, fastest way to create fields:

In the map, look for two sides of a triangle (your team's, of course), step one, go to one end then hack hack hack hack it to get a portal key, then step two, go to the other end and create a field. Rinse and repeat.

I call this "fieldwork". :)

The best place to do fieldwork of course is where a lot of your team's portals are, and where others have made the initial links. Look for this in the map, or ask in faction chat. If you want, do all the step ones first, then do your step twos.  Or maybe you already have keys to your team's portals in your inventory, then fantastic your 1536AP is over halfway done!

There are three game rules to remember, to be sure the third link can actually be created:
1. Links cannot cross existing green or blue links.
2. Links longer than a kilometre require the source portal to be at least level 3.
3. The confusing overlap rule: Links between internal and internal are not allowed, but links between internal and one-layer-above outermost are. (This rule only applies when you're trying to make fields within the enclosure of a bigger field. This rarely happens.)

Make fieldwork a habit and you'll be surprised how fast you level up.  Naturally, you will ignore the enemy portals, because when you're out to get multiple 1536APs, the 100APs are a waste of time. Naturally, you will acquire plenty of resonators and bursters, which are all useful at higher levels. Third, creating swaths of colour on the map is more fulfilling than destroying them.  But for me, the best thing about fieldwork is that it is spontaneous -- no time commitments, no coordinating meetups, and no owing somebody their time. 

One last note: Of course, someone else has had to make the first two links of each triangle -- so do that too! Otherwise, you know, this entire strategy will never get off the ground.

#ingress (last updated February 9)
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