waderoush writes: Niantic Labs, a startup inside Google, released its augmented-reality game Ingress to the public in December. What game creator John Hanke wasn't expecting was how much it would influence players' offline lives. Linda Besh, who was recently named one of the game's top five players in the world, credits Ingress with changing her life. The Detroit resident quit her job as a financial analyst after the game helped her uncover her desire to lead and build communities. 'I had it in me to be a leader, but I felt I didn’t have the pedigree...With Ingress, I didn’t need anyone’s approval, so I was able to break out,' says Besh, who's known inside the game world as Portalyst. As Niantic prepares to release the first iOS version of Ingress later this year, efforts to augment reality through location-based games are ramping up.