Google's Niantic follows Ingress with Endgame

Not quite strong enough to stand on their own, the future of augmented reality games lies in ties to other media. At least, that's the plan that Niantic Labs appears to be pursuing.

As development continues on Ingress, Niantic's first offering which recently left beta, the quasi-independent startup within Google on Wednesday announced its next game: Endgame, a partnership with author James Frey's Full Fathom Five production company and publisher HarperCollins. Author Nils Johnson-Shelton is co-writing the books with Frey.

Details are light so far, but the game will tie into the young adult trilogy of novels … Read more

Ingress opens to all, will leave beta next month

Ingress has found success making inroads into the world of mobile augmented-reality games, and its latest moves signal that it's ready for a wider audience.

The game overlays an alien energy invasion onto a real-world map, where physical landmarks become points of incursion for the energy. It's also become stable enough since its debut a year ago that the game's designers at Niantic Labs, a quasi-startup within Google, dropped its invitation-only requirement on Monday. John Hanke, who runs Niantic and founded Keyhole, which became Google Earth when Google acquired it, also announced that the game would leave … Read more

Google augmented-reality game Ingress to expand to iOS in 2014

Ingress, an augmented-reality Android game from Google's Niantic Labs unit in which players try to conquer territory in the real world, will come to iOS in 2014.

Arriving on the scene a year ago, the closed-beta software Ingress has been gradually updated with bug fixes and new features. One thing that hasn't changed is the absence of an iPhone version, even though Google generally tends to support Apple's mobile operating system.

Next year, however, Google plans to release Ingress for iOS, Ingress product manager Brandon Badger told All Things D. … Read more

Ingress adds a traditional twist to its augmented-reality MMO

Ingress, the massively multiplayer augmented-reality game, is unique in its own right, utilizing real-world locations and a surprisingly deep science fiction back story to keep its players active. But a recent update to the Android title, pushed out to the Google Play store Thursday, is bringing more common multiplayer features to the game in an effort to keep its players interested through some healthy competition.

The update introduces a new achievement system for players, called "agents" within the in-game lingo, that lets you track your own and fellow players' progress in various skill areas like portal capturing and … Read more

Inside Ingress, Google's new augmented-reality game

Last week we began to see the first hints of Google's first foray into so-called "alternate reality gaming," in which cryptic clues are strewn about the on- and offline worlds for the perusal of highly engaged fans. "What is the Niantic Project?" asked a teaser video. As of today, we know the answer: the Niantic Project is a game called Ingress.

As described in a teaser video, Ingress describes a world in which two shadowy sides are vying for dominance: the Enlightened, who are trying to establish portals around the world that will let them … Read more