Illyriad is a strategy game set in an on-going fantasy world, played through a browser (no download or plug-in required). Players start with a single tiny settlement, and then grow their empire until they have a series of huge cities.
At first glance it looks like a standard city-building strategy game, with a strong war element (you build resource production, extra buildings and then troops), but it differs from the usual city-builder in several important respects:
- First, it rarely turns into a wargame. Player-versus-player combat does not occur often.
- Second, there are lots of less obvious things to do in the game, beyond building and fighting – diplomatic units are often more important than military, and the game benefits from regularly introduced tournaments and mysteries.
- Third, the world has a lot more creative detail than the usual fantasy fare: the Faction descriptions are worth a read in their own right, and create a backdrop more interesting than most RPG settings (let alone strategy game settings).
- Fourth, the game is a slow build-up. It seems to be designed so that it can be played over a long period of time, but it can take several weeks of nurturing a new settlement before the player can do a great deal in the world. It takes some patience to play.
But if you’re already reading this blog, presumably you know all of that?
If you are already playing and enjoying Illyriad, you will find that the links on the right take you to how-to articles and general observations about the game. If you aren’t already playing the game, you can do so here.