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Topic ClosedPossible Paths in Illyriad

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GM Stormcrow View Drop Down
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Joined: 23 Feb 2010
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Direct Link To This Post Topic: Possible Paths in Illyriad
    Posted: 05 Apr 2010 at 19:54

So, you've got a decent start with your first city and are wondering what to do next?

There are lots of options open to you, and you will need to pick the ones that best suit your playstyle and what you want to achieve in the game.

There are, however, a few pieces of wisdom we want to impart.

  • Work out who your friends and enemies are
Even if you don't plan to make player enemies, they may come and find you first.

You can certainly play Illyriad as a solo, lone-wolf player, but it will be more challenging to do so if (for whatever reason) you fall foul of a multi-player alliance. 
We're not saying you have to join a player Alliance - though it can certainly help protect you under their carefully negotiated peace treaties and Non-Aggression Pacts (NAPs) - but at the very minimum you should get to know your immediate neighbours and their plans. 

This is, after all, a MMO - and your wishes for a peaceful and harmonious existence in the world might not be what you end up with.

If you do wish to apply to join an alliance, there's an Alliance Recruitment thread here.
  • Specialisation versus Generalisation
There's no doubt that a player that specialises early in one or two particular fields will end up better at those things than a player who dabbles in everything.  There is, however, a balance in Illyriad's game design whereby there are usually multiple ways of achieving the same ultimate objective through different paths. 

For example, you can choose to build a Tanner and produce your own leather armour, or you can choose to trade other resources for leather armour, or you can choose to run quests that reward leather armour, or you can choose to steal leather armour from other players, or you can choose to join an alliance that might provide leather armour to new members... to name only a few options for getting leather armour.

Bear in mind that your first city is just that - your first city. 

Maybe your first city should be a generalised city and your second city can be your military production powerhouse, your third city can be your spell-casting city, your fourth city can be your diplomatic nexus etc. 

It's up to you, but think and plan ahead.
  • Don't be afraid to ask questions
Illyriad is a game with a lot of depth and a huge number of strategic options - with more options being added weekly!

If you don't understand something, search the forums for an answer and if you don't find it, don't be afraid to ask.

There are many knowledgable people here who will help you out, often before a GM gets a chance to answer!


By no means an exhaustive list, here are some suggestions for next steps.

  • Set your taxes sensibly
Whilst you are under New Player Protection you will not need (or be able) to build an army from day one.  So set your tax rate to near zero - which will give you up to 25% extra resource production.  When you start needing lots of Gold to pay military units and build things that require gold you can adjust the tax rates accordingly.

  • Gather resources
If you've done the Tutorial, you will have a caravan.  Send that caravan out to the glowing, pulsing piles of resources scattered randomly on the map and it will gather these for you and bring them back - increasing your resource level substantially.

Be aware, however, that if an Army is occupying the square you're going towards, or if an Army arrives whilst you're gathering, then your caravans may meet a sticky end. 

You should also know that if another caravan is there when you arrive, you will push this caravan off the square - and the player you pushed off might not be thrilled by your incursion.

However, gathering resources is a great way to get a quick head start.

  • Protect yourself
Specifically, make sure you have a Vault built in your city before your New Player Protection expires.  Vaults protect a certain amount of resources from armed raiders and thieves, and having a vault built before you are vulnerable to the world outside is a prudent step.

The Vault requires the City Technologies Timekeeping, Bureaucracy & Safeguard before it can be built.

You might also think about building a City Wall to further protect your city, but bear in mind that a City Wall only gives bonuses to military defenders *present* in the city. So if you have no troops, a City Wall provides no protection.  Troops first, wall later.

  • The Military Path
Research the first Military Technology, Militia, and build a Barracks

Research Spearmanship, which unlocks your first military unit. 

Secure a source of military equipment for your basic spearmen units (Spears and, usually, Leather Armour) so you can build your basic military units.  If you produce your own military equipment you will probably find that Livestock is one of your early resource bottlenecks, so it's well worth keeping your Common Ground churning out Livestock.

Research Command and promote a unit to be a Commander.  Even if your army is small, your commander will gain experience in every combat that he participates in where enemy troops perish - and experience translates into bonuses.

Read the Help threads Armies In Illyriad and Combat, so you can adjust your strategy to the strengths of your race and your needs.

  • The Diplomatic Path
Research the first Diplomatic Technology, Negotiation, and build a Consulate.

Read the Help thread on Diplomatic Missions.

Research Scouts & Counter-Intelligence.  When your Diplomatic Units are at home, they act as defenders against hostile diplomatic missions of the same type of unit.

Upgrade your Paddock (or trade for the items) as all advanced Diplomatic units require Horses, and most require Saddles and Books as well.

Continue upgrading your Consulate and researching new technologies such as Espionage and Theft, and use your units - forewarned is forearmed!

  • The Production Powerhouse
Upgrade your Lumberjacks, Clay Pits, Quarries, Iron Mines and Farmyards, research new City Buildings, and keep upgrading your Storehouse and Vault.

Soon enough you'll be churning out goods for your own use, or for trading with other players for goods you cannot yet produce yourself.

  • City of Forbidden Secrets
Research Arcana and build a Mage Tower.

Choose a school of spells wisely, according to what you wish to do ingame, and research it.  You can learn an additional school of spells with a technology unlocked every fifth level of your Mage Tower.

Research Timekeeping, Bureaucracy & Bookbinding so you can build a Bookbinder.  Pretty much all spells require books to cast.

Spells are a great way of supplementing your town's capabilities - and hindering your enemies'.

  • Trade Empire
Upgrade your Marketplace and research new technologies such as Bartering and Trading that enable you to carry additional types of resources in your trade caravans.

Build caravans whenever you are able and keep up with your trade skills to increase your capacity.  Ever level upgrade of the marketplace adds additional speed to your caravans.  Even if your caravans aren't carrying goods or offering trades on the offers lists, you can send them out to gather resources from the map.

Spend some time watching the trade offers list and working out what is in demand, and what is not - and you'll soon be able to gather what you need at a fair price.

  • Quests
Secure a source of beer - either through trade or by research Brewing and building a Brewery.

Research Bartending, build a Tavern and then research the first Quest technology, Trade Contacts.

This will allow you start some trade quests.  Please note that you will need a marketplace and available caravans to fulfil the requirements of the quest.

Quests are a great way of swapping (and, in the process, gaining additional) resources on one type for another - often more advanced type.

There are many possible paths in Illyriad - these are but a few starting suggestions - and you may wish to run a hybrid strategy.

Please don't hesitate to get in touch with us via the forums if there's anything you're stuck on.

Please don't hesitate to report bugs or gameplay issues via the Petition system, available ingame under the "Support" link in the ingame Options menu.

We wish you all the very best of luck in whatever you choose to do, and hope you enjoy playing Illyriad as much as we enjoy having you here.

Best wishes,

The GM and Dev team.

Edited by GM Stormcrow - 29 Mar 2011 at 15:34
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