So You Think You Can BAF
BAF – Big “Augmented” Field… Right Suzi?
So you see that Illuminator badge day in and day out and the stats just aren’t climbing any higher, perhaps your local team has an elite Spec-Ops division but it’s so secret you aren’t sure how to get in (or if one even exists). Let me tell you, getting in isn’t easy but it isn’t impossible! The experiences below reflect my experiences as an agent in Vancouver, BC:
In the days of constant #Op-Sec and fear of moles, many elite teams tend to keep to themselves and choose not to involve newer agents. This makes sense, but it’s also unfortunate when all you want to do is get your Illuminator badge and feel the glory of throwing one of those Big Ass Fields. (It’s totally glorious, oh my god I can’t even tell you how glorious). But what you need to realize is that special elite team did not just one day throw a BAF and feel that instant gratification, no they took months of planning and playing just to figure out how to do it.
Our local team is always recruiting people who want to help, it’s challenging and requires vetting but we certainly don’t take kindly to “Oh I want to throw the closing link! Can I complete the field? I want the Illuminator badge!”.
Here are some of the random things we’ve all had to do in order to earn the privilege of throwing that closing link:
- Driving over 200km at 2AM on New Years Day just to take down a BAF, being the only sober driver was the worst decision I ever made.
- Climbing assorted mountains, taking paths through the bushes just to find the portal you need to sit and farm keys for. (Stock up on those VR party mods, you’re going to need them!)
- Idly sitting in the middle of a city with no clue where you will be dispatched to next, or even when you’ll be dispatched but you’re ready just in case that last minute blocker pops up!
- Standing in the middle of the woods, with almost zero service hoping and praying that your zello is working and you’ll be able to hear when you have to throw your links.
- Making random runs across the border to transfer keys and trying to formulate your speech of how you’ll explain Ingress to that border guard who thinks you’re just “one of those online weirdos”
- Walking 4.5km out on a jetty to take out a blocker, and then of course walk the 4.5km back to civilization
- Participating in an op that took forever to plan and coordinate and having it fail. This could very well be the most important experience any future BAF’er should have.
These are just a few of the crazy things that can (probably will) happen while you earn your stripes to join the BAF team. If you aren’t interested in planning the op yourself, treat your planners and intel operators nicely because it isn’t an easy job (especially with the latest intel update *eyeroll*).
Don’t let all of this get you down future BAF’er! Your Illuminator glory is closer than you think! Contact your local BAF team (or the senior agents/community leads if you aren’t familiar with the BAF team) and let them know that you are ready and willing, and be sure to read these tips on how to take the next steps toward BAF glory:
- Take the time to read their previous sitreps and see the challenges they’ve faced and try to think of new solutions
- Offer up your car to transport another agent on the next op
- Volunteer to be a blocker remover
- Pair up with a veteran agent and see how an op evolves from conception to completion
- Run a smaller op of your own and be familiar with coordinating agents
- Above all, volunteer volunteer volunteer!
All of these things and more will show your local BAF team you are ready. However not every area will have a BAF team or enough MU in the area to get an onyx Illuminator right away. If you don’t have a local BAF team, why not start one yourself? There’s lots of information out there and support from people all across the world on how to BAF. So get out there and get ready to BAF! Please share your BAF experiences with us in the comments!
Go forth and BAF! – Agent Alykat