Glyphs are the language of the Shapers, the race that seems to be authoring the crisis on earth. Glyphs namely appear in the game as part of Glyph Hacking, but may have a deeper meaning in the Ingress Lore.
Glyphs are a language comparable to Anglo-Saxon and Norse runes, where characters stand alone as words rather than as letters, like in most modern languages on Earth. Glyphs are written on an eleven-dot matrix by connecting adjacent points with straight, unbroken lines. The Glyph language so far seems to be limited to nouns and verbs, which are combined to make simple yet entirely understandable phrases.
- Main article: Glyph Hacking
Glyph Hacking is an extended version of hacking a Portal. Agents can initiate a Glyph Hack when hacking both enemy and friendly Portals by holding the 'Hack'-button and then selecting the Glyph Hack-option by sliding onto the Glyph-icon. Glyph hacking involves memorizing a randomly selected sequence of Glyphs and tracing them back on the Glyph array as quickly as possible. The number of Glyphs shown can range from one to five. Proper Glyph sequences however only vary in length from three Glyphs for L3-L5 to five for L8, depending on the level of the Agent and the Portal being hacked. For each Glyph that is repeated back correctly, the Agent is awarded 50 AP and a certain "Hack bonus". If all the Glyphs are repeated correctly, the Agent is awarded an extra 100 AP and a "Speed bonus", if applicable.
Glyph Command Channel
Command Channel activates activates after initiilasing a Glyph Hack but before the selection of Glyphs or Glyph sequence is displayed and can be used to modify the Glyph hacking-procedure or its outcome by sending commands/Glyphs just after the "COMMAND CHANNEL OPEN" message.
Known commands that work are:
- More: Potentially gives the Agent (up to three) Portal Keys even if they already have.
- Less: Never gives the Agent a Portal Key
- Complex: Makes the Glyph sequence speed up. Useful for Agents on buses/trains.
- Simple: Makes the Glyph sequence slow down. Useful for memorization.
- Main article: Glyph Sequences
Proper Glyph sequences contain phrases related to the Lore e.g. the Shapers, N'Zeer, the Enlightened , the Resistance , or the war for humanity and give us insight into the purposes of the Shapers. Proper Glyph sequences vary in length from three (L3-L5) to five Glyphs (L8).
Some Glyphs have antonym pairs. These pairs are direct antonyms such as
DEFEND , and
DESTROY . The Glyphs in the pair are mirror images of each other. In order to remember the sequences correctly, it is recommended to pair the Glyph to its meaning, not its appearance.
Glyphs have one or more meanings. The known meanings of the Glyphs are shown below.
The Imperfect Glyph
With one exception, all Glyphs are drawn by connecting nodes without backtracking. That is to say, the lines that connect two nodes may cross but never overlap one another or bridge another node.
IMPERFECT-Glyph is the sole exception. To correctly draw the Glyph, the Agent must connect the left node of row 5 directly to the right node of row 3, bypassing the center node at row 4. Then, the Agent must backtrack and connect the right node of row 3 to the center node at row 4, then connect that to the left node of row 5.
Symmetries and Similarities
Many Glyphs come in sets of two, being rotated or mirrored with respect to each other, or have some other relationship. These are listed here to make them easier to memorize.
- Abandon and Restraint are mirrored horizontally.
- Advance and Retreat are mirrored horizontally.
- After and Before are mirrored horizontally.
- Attack/War and Defend are mirrored vertically.
- Barrier and Path are mirrored horizontally.
- Breathe/Live and Death/Die are mirrored vertically.
- Capture and Liberate are rotated 180°.
- Civilization and Nature are mirrored vertically.
- Clear All is a superimposition of Clear and All.
- Create and Destroy are mirrored horizontally.
- Courage and Fear are rotated 180°.
- Data and Message are rotated 90°.
- Destination and Distance/Outside are rotated 180°.
- Deteriorate and Improve are rotated 180°.
- Evolution/Progress/Success and Failure are mirrored horizontally.
- Forget and Ignore are mirrored horizontally.
- Future and Past are mirrored horizontally.
- Gain and Lose are mirrored horizontally.
- I/Me and Other/You/Your are mirrored vertically.
- Impure and Pure are rotated 180°.
- Less and More are mirrored vertically.
- New and Old are rotated 180°.
- Nourish and Recharge/Repair are mirrored vertically.
- Open All is a superimposition of Accept/Open and All.
- Pursue and Want are mirrored vertically.
Other glyphs create even bigger groups, that are related by their meaning. For example:
- There are several (Event)-Glyphs that are not active any more:
- The Inside/Not-Glyph contains the symbol of a logical negation (¬) aka a logical