So, one of the biggest challenges for a game like Ingress is that the game dynamics are the same for all regions of the world and the game play is optimized unfortunately for the largest audience, urban players. That leaves rural players with a difficult challenge ahead of them, simply, having fun playing the game without going broke filling up the tank.
Rural players though have a few really great advantages. The first being is that they have roads that are far less traveled than urban players. Meaning there will be less competition for the portals that you have. Also, the amount of players is small for both sides, so it will be easier to coordinate activity. Here are my recommendations for those players that live where the portals are few and far in between.
- Submit, submit, submit... then submit some more.
Being in a rural area, there is generally a lot of history in town that Google is unaware of. Find it, take a picture with GPS properties enabled of the site, and submit it to Niantic Labs. If you are thorough, you could end up with a good amount of portals available to very few players, offering up great AP for those few. Potential portal sites include historic buildings and land, parks, museums, sculptures, fixed works of art, buildings of significance (town halls, churches, post office, fire stations, etc.), locations of historic significance often with a plaque (locations of battles, inventions, firsts (first building with electricity) etc.), significant landmarks (waterfalls, wildlife preserves, national forests, etc). Be creative and keep your eyes open when traveling around town. For more information on submitting portals, read this support post.
- Make farming part of your daily routine
- Being in a rural area, you don't have the luxury of an abundance of portals and xm to farm, so you have to be strategic with how and when you collect needed resources so that you don't go for broke at the pump. The best recommendation is to hop on Ingress whenever you are on the move. I will at times, turn off my screen time out and drive with my phone on the seat next to me to collect whatever xm I drive by when going to the store or other local destinations. Occasionally stopping at a portal when it is convenient. A bit of warning, this practice requires discipline to not keep checking your phone, as it is very easy to stare at your screen for more than a few seconds and end up in the trunk of the car ahead of you.
- Make use of Jarvis Virus / ADA Refactor items
- When there is not much opposition, being able to flip one of your portals to the opposite faction's control, destroying and rebuilding it can generate huge AP. This is where Jarvis Virus & ADA Refactor items come in handy.
- Save power cubes for planned attacking / building runs
- Rural areas do not offer up as much XM as urban areas. This is where Power Cubes come in handy. They allow you to recharge your XM bank by consuming one. This allows you to stay in the field longer and capture that much needed AP.
- Don't waste XM on decaying portals
- Letting portals decay is a viable strategy for a rural player without a faction opponent. This allows you to take advantage of the AP granted by rebuilding the portal. Sure, if that portal maintained a control field, that field will be lost when it depletes low enough, but think about that fresh AP you will get when you re-establish that control field? In the long run, it is better to get to Level 8 than worry about the short term effects of losing control of a portal for your faction.