illyriad - Grand Strategy MMO

About Illyriad Games

Illyriad Games Ltd was founded in 2009 to launch Illyriad, our first and only game.

Our operational headquarters are in London, UK [sounds grand doesn't it - what it really means is that's where I live] - but our staff and contributors are located around the world [this much is, at least, true].

Major Release Dates

  • 22 Feb 2010: Illyriad Alpha Launched
  • 31 Mar 2011: Illyriad Beta Launched
  • 16 May 2011: Illyriad Launched

On The Web

Website: Illyriad Website
Forums: Illyriad Forums
Facebook: Illyriad | Facebook
Chrome Web Store: Illyriad | Chrome App
twitter: @illyriad

Our Philosophy

We're gamers, not game-industry insiders, and we're writing a game that we'd like to play ourselves [but are unfortunately forbidden from doing so, as apparently summoning eleventy-thousand Mammoths to win a battle would be unfair... sheesh, some people...]

We believe that:

  • 2D MMORPG Strategy games should be truly persistent - the world should carry on changing when you log out.

  • Servers shouldn't reset after an arbitrary endgame, destroying all the players' emotional investment in the gameworld. Why can't browser games grow, evolve and change with updates and expansion packs so that the 'endgame' doesn't arrive - except when *you* want it to?

  • There's no reason why 2D browser games can't have depth of gameplay, hand-crafted (rather than random) world maps, and lovingly-crafted NPC environments. Why can't these worlds live, breathe and be truly immersive?

  • In a strategy-focused empire-building game we can meddle with catalysts, but there's no ingame content that's as compelling to players as player-created content. Our job is to enable that to happen seamlessly.

  • Long-term games should work on as many browsers and platforms as possible; you should be able to play this on your home computer, your iPad, your Android or iPhone when you're out-and-about.

  • Games that allow "Pay-To-Win" are short-term and self-defeating for everyone involved.

  • Browser games can be sandbox games, and you don't have to insult players' intelligence. Things should be as simple and intuitive to do as possible, but should have levels of depth as deep as the player wishes them to be.

  • Players often know better than the design and dev team when something should be changed, and player suggestions should be listened to and acted upon if the idea is sound.

It's an MMO - and yes, it's partly our MMO - but it's mostly your MMO. [Does this make sense? PR department help, please]


Enough with the pablum, time to move on to the srs bznz.

Please address all paper - and especially legal - correspondence to:

Illyriad Games Limited
563 Chiswick High Road
London W4 3AY

Our Company No is 06969057, registered at Companies House in England & Wales.

We're not currently hiring but if you think there's something you can offer that we would truly be idiots to ignore, send us email. [We'll probably ignore it]

If you've got something you want to give us for free, then we're interested [in a disinterested kind-of way, purely as a negotiating tactic]. If you want to pay us for something, then we're all ears [but obviously playing hard-to-get].


Please direct all press requests and enquiries to .

Direct all account related issues to .

For ingame support, use the ingame "Support" Petition link; the "?" icon underneath your Player Overview on the top of the screen.


HTML5 Powered with Graphics, 3D & Effects Illyriad is built using ASP.NET (MVC) with SQLServer and the front end is pure HTML and javascript - with no plug-ins (this means no Flash, Java or Silverlight).

[Nothing funny here, spot the bit written by the tech department :rolleyes:]

We also make use of Jquery, Raphaël and flot.

Our HTML editor for profile and mails is provided by CKEditor



James Niesewand  is the CEO, and is The Man With Whom The Slightly-Soiled Buck Stops. He grapples daily with inner demons that whisper "Sell out! Sell out!" in the twisted nightmare of his tortured psyche, but is so far fighting a marginally winning battle. James is also talking about himself in the third person, which is a well-documented indicator of insanity.

Ben Adams  is the CTO, and is The Man With Whom The Buck Stops After It's Been Passed To Him By James. Ben grapples valiantly with all the "But Ben, how difficult could it be?" whining that is thrown at him on a daily, if not hourly, basis and to his credit has yet to resort to stabbing James over the Internet tubes.

Ben - in uncharacteristically poetic mode for a techie - once described the way the two of us work together very aptly: "I look after the horizontal and vertical, and James looks after the Depth." I'd normally take credit for that line, but sadly it's a matter of record in the well-maintained database backups. [Curse you, Ben! Ohwai...]


On a more serious note... We couldn't have done this without the help of a large number of extremely talented individuals and a few incredible corporations; many of whom are listed below, some of whom I've forgotten, and others of whom I wish I could forget [only kidding guys, wubz y'all!]

Many of them are listed by first name and last name initial only, and this is purely because I haven't bothered to ask them whether their RL employers would be impressed by their inclusion in this list, and (uncharacteristically) I've decided not to shaft them deliberately.

Anyone listed below who'd like full names and/or linkies is welcome to ask and we'll put it on the update list for this page. This page is scheduled for update every third wednesday during the year 2042, around about when [as a nod to Smoking Gnu] we anticipate releasing Combat Magic.

Graphics & Design Work

Quantic Lab produced the [insert suitably wonderful adjective here] World Map terrain and city graphics, navigational buttons, and special thanks go to Stefan, Sebastian & Marius

Geir Opdal designed the [as above, needs great adjective - please fill in] town map, resource icons and most of the player character portaits

Oliver Niesewand designed the [gorgeous/beautiful/amazing] original World Map terrain, all the user interface conceptual graphics and the overall Illyriad look-and-feel ranging from the logo to the tree motif and much, much else.

AvatarArt produced some of the [can't someone in PR rewrite this?] male player character portraits

Amanda Dickinson produced [amazing/excellent/Hello? Hello? Felicity from PR? Is that your name? Are you there, as I need help with words!?] advertising-focused conceptual graphics and banner adverts

Fonts used under license include Francisco Lucas, Stonecross and Silvus, and the scroll window artwork is also used under license [What do you mean we don't have a PR department? But we're srs bzns!]

Supplementary Game Design & Content

Military balancing and unit descriptions: Tom C [Blame him for everything]

Quest Writing: Tom C, Nis P, Rob B [Lovely job guys, but where's the rest of them?]

Faction Descriptions: Tom C, Nis P, Kevin H, Nicole S, Mikal O, Tim [Who on earth do you think you guys are? Neil bloody Gaiman?!]

Ingame economy: Tibike C [So wait, explain to me again how unemployment in Illyriad influences the price of Food in the marketplace. So.... tired.... ]

The Testing Team, Alpha & Beta

A huge amount of karmic kredit and kudos [but specifically not shareholdings, payment, royalties, intellectual property rights or anything else of a financial nature ofc, duh] go to a hardcore group of testers - especially Simon H, Lynn B, Tom C, Michael F, Peter Q, Mohandis A, Thomas C [the other one], & Laura W - who between them spent countless hours not simply testing things, but also making sensible suggestions on how to make things better. [We ignored most of these suggestions, of course, but you have to acknowledge the effort they put in.]

Gameserver Web Hosting

Hivelocity and Microsoft Azure have provided invaluable advice, service and support [Can you give us 'extra special price' next year if I say this?].

Forum Web Hosting

Webwizguide wrote and host the forum software.

Other Services

SEQ Legal. They may be reptilian lawyers, but they're our reptilian lawyers - and so we like them in the same way we like the Giant Fire Salamanders of Djebeli.

TaxAssist. They may be bean counters, but they're counting our beans - and so we like them too, except when we get cornered by them at dinner parties.

Payment Services

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