Why Is There Pac-Man on Ingress
PacMan Takes Over Ingress
PacMan on Ingress
When I logged into Ingress this morning, I was in for a little surprise. It turns out that sometime between when I played Ingress yesterday, and today, my little triangle was replaced by Pac-Man, and all the portals in the Ingress world were changed into ghosts. They ghosts don't chase you in Ingress, which is a good thing because downtown, there are a lot of portals.
Resistance portals are blue ghosts, of course. Enlightened portals are green ghosts, even though there are not really any green ghosts in the official PacMan game. Uncaptured, or neutral portals are white ghosts with grimaces. From the actual Pac Man video game, think of the white ghosts that blink in and out after your power up is about to run out.
If you have your sounds off while playing Ingress, like I do, you should turn them on at least for a bit. The Ingress scanner plays PacMan theme song when it starts up. Collecting XM makes the familiar waka waka waka sound that the original video game makes as you eat up dots. Other game activities like hacking make fun sounds as well.
Today is a great day to get out an play with Ingress and try everything from hacking to attacking, recharging, deploying shields and more. You never know which things produce fun video game sounds and which ones maybe have new animations as well.
No word yet on whether playing during Pac Man Ingress day gets you an Ingress badge or note. I for one would love to see a little PacMan badge on my Agent tab.
Why Is Ingress Showing PacMan on the Scanner
So, now that you know you are not crazy, it's time to ask WHY Pac Man is running around on your Ingress screen. The answer would be more simple if the entire world was on the same time zone, but since they aren't you might be off-guard here in America.
However, in Asia it is already tomorrow.
What is tomorrow's date?
It's Apri 1st.
Still don't have it yet?
Rather than release some phony news, or a bizarre update, it seems that Google (and Niantic, makers of Ingress, is owned by Google) decided to go with a PacMan video game theme. And, since Ingress is an international game, they decided to release the PacMan when the day and time rolled over to April Fools. While it is still March 31st, here in the United States, that isn't true across the globe.
That brings up the question of how long Pac Man will be on your Ingress game screen. It could just be for 24 hours from when it started, but that would mean stopping while it is still April Fools day in much of the world. The more likely idea is that it will be April Fools Day Pack Man Ingress until the last time zone on Earth ticks over into April 2.
That means that you can have plenty of time to enjoy (or hate, there always has to be someone with a buzz kill) the campy and clever little PacMan theme in Ingress.
By the way, if you haven't had a chance yet, fire up Google Maps. You'll see a setting down where there is normally something like Satellite Mode and Google Earth Mode. That setting is PacMan mode. Choose it and then use the arrow keys to play a game of PacMan based on your city streets. Play near your house, play near your work, play PacMan on the streets of Paris, the choice is yours.
Oh, and Happy April Fools Day, even if it is a little bit early wherever you live.
Since PacMan Ingress won't be here for long, you might want to take a quick screenshot to preserve the memory. On most Android phones, holding down the On/Off button and the Home button at the same time and keeping it pressed down will capture a screenshot for you. Then offload it to Google Drive, or wherever you happen to keep your photos.
If you have more questions about Ingress, how to play Ingress, or just Ingress strategy in general, you may want to check out my online Ingress Manual that I fill with tips, tricks, strategies and stories about playing Ingress.