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An option to specifically exclude places that don't let you move around

I really love this game but I'm not some sort of a geography pro that's going to know a specific restaurant in a city I've never heard of and can't move around with the arrows. I like to create and play maps that have just an entire state or country as the topic, but I hate when it places me at someone's submitted panorama on Google maps instead of an actual street view where I can move around. I'm sure a lot of people like these, but I don't. Is it possible to develop a way to exclude them?


  • I second (and third) that!

    The photospheres bring their own challenges and charms but most of the time I just want to be able to explore and figure things out without having to have been to that specific place in real life.
  • This just happened to me for about the third time since I went full-pay a few months ago and it is extremely frustrating to run four rounds perfectly only to get stuck in one of these photospheres! I understand some may like this challenge, but for me it's like being forced into a straightjacket and shifts the game to an alien set of rules. These destinations should be removed from all verified games. I play the United States game almost exclusively and I play most every day. Please remove the photosphere image destinations!
    David C
  • You can play custom maps made by the community that explicitly avoid photospheres or other kind of bad locations (like blurry pictures).


    There is always a risk of getting one but it's very low. This risk is impossible to avoid as the problem lies into Google Maps itself, not Geoguessr: photospheres are prioritized for no reasons and anyone can upload one anytime (meaning if a starting point got a photosphere uploaded around then this photosphere is likely to be selected instead of actual Streetview, this is unpredictable). And Google randomly removes bits of coverage everywhere again for no reason, leading to black screens.
  • Hello there. Unfortunately, it's not a trivial problem. We do remove some locations without links, but its quite common for two isolated photospheres to link to each other. We need to preprocess locations and try walking them automatically in order to reach satisfying results here. Another option could be to measure walking from players and feedback our metadata.


  • By the way Erland (or any of the devs) I did a suggestion at Google to add a new setting in their API:

    This setting would allow selecting only official coverage made by Google, or only unofficial coverage (photosphere or coverage made by users). Since you probably have more influence as a customer (you pay Google for their services after all) maybe you can post something to explain why this setting can be important for your business. It would be really great to have this setting so we're sure to only get official coverage if we want to.
  • Yes. We did some testing with the outdoor parameter back when it first added, but ultimately we decided against it due to user locations still being included. If I remember correctly, we also tested parsing metadata, such as author to determine if a panorama was actually coming from google. However, back then, lots of imagery was missing data (even ones coming from google). Maybe its time for another round.
  • The metadata way could be a good idea, didn't think about this eventuality. I do know Google did some photospheres at some point to cover some business, but it was before the ability to upload photospheres ourselves in early 201X years. Here is an example:
    Still, it was long time ago so the chances to get a Google photosphere is extremely low. Also I am not sure if people naming themselves "Google" could be caught as well but I think we can't name ourselves "Google" anyways. So metadata should be safe.

    About the outdoor, my latest test seemed to be working but it's really just a workaround as it relies on the fact that the API cannot know if a photosphere is outdoor or not. And it does keep selecting official indoor coverage, which makes no sense. If you need help to test, feel free to ask.

    By the way, do you know how many meters the maximal distance to "catch" a panorama is? I think it's 50 meters but I want to be sure.

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