Ikariam – avoid Android App and limit your expectationsPublished April 20, 2021
Ikariam is a browser, Greek-themed MMO strategy video game developed and published by Gameforge in 2008. Set in the Classical Greece era, the game allows players to be rulers of a small city and grow them while leading the inhabitants. The priority is to collect resources and conquer the enemies to ensure that the town evolves and thrives.
Ikariam started as a project of a team consisting of six developers in 2007. Although the game’s development took only one year, it garnered substantial success from the get-go. One million players signed up in the first three months when the German server was the only one to host the game.
Nowadays, there are various international servers, and each of them represents one realm, made of a unique population and islands. Since Ikariam was released 12 years ago, the ranking has a significant role in the game, which wildly depends on how old the world is. The newer ones are more flexible concerning alliances, but it’s also challenging to reach seasoned players.
Older and better-established worlds (e.g., Alpha and Beta) are economically and military stable, being home to veterans with high ranks and staggering experience. However, these seasoned players often decide to challenge themselves, start a new account in a new realm, and reach success again.
Another peculiar fact is that Ikariam has a highly tight-knit community. The developers even said that a player went from Syria to Damascus to form a peace contract with another player and ensure a truce.
But how is Ikariam today, and is it worth playing in 2021? Here are our insights.
App glitches ruin the game
With a premise similar to the Civilization and the Travian franchises, Ikariam gives players control over a small city that they have to develop by leading it, collecting resources, and conquering their enemies.
The development and research unfold in real-time, allowing players to go back and give citizens their tasks. These responsibilities consist of paying taxes or assembling resources. The world itself encompasses different islands. There can be up to 16 players in each of them, together with their cities. These islands are self-sustainable thanks to possessing a sawmill and a building to produce resources, such as wine, marble, and sulfur.
However, before having them, these assets have to be acquired and nurtured. It is why players have to immerse themselves in trading and conquests. Cooperation between settlers of each island is highly beneficial because it allows exchanging goods and boosting efficiency. If they don’t manage to achieve collaboration, that could entice hostility.
Communication between players is possible thanks to the agora message board. Each player can only see messages from the islands where their towns are. The collected resources can be used for various activities, such as building academies. Players can also send inhabitants to garner knowledge on emerging technologies. But it’s essential to nurture their contentment. Otherwise, they could leave the city.
As in real life, how citizens feel about living there could be detrimental to future development. Luckily, players don’t have to guess what makes the island inhabitants happy. The game lets you know which activity boosts their contentment levels and what to do to make it happen. For example, if you construct a tavern, your citizens will be 12 percent more joyous.
Inhabitants also like good wine, and drinking it will increase the happiness bar by 60 percent. Besides letting players know what makes people happy, the game also provides counselors who make navigating the world smoother. You can find them at the right top of the screen as Military, Towns, Diplomacy, and Research.
Depending on their expertise, they will keep you updated about the ongoings in your town, give you insights into the fleets and battle reports, help you research, and communicate with other players.
Connections have a significant role in the game because they can help you form alliances. Besides creating one yourself, you can also join them and collaborate with other players. That will be of paramount importance when in danger because your allies will protect you if you ever find yourself under attack.
However, you can’t have as many members in your alliance as you want. Your embassy rate dictates your power concerning these connections. But since these alliances include in-depth collaboration, many believe this is the highlight of Ikariam.
Another crucial element you should pay attention to is to ensure you engage in attacks to establish your dominance over the island and the neighboring seas. Achieve that by forming a powerful military and naval fleet as you’ll need it for standing tall during the long travels.
Ultimately, if you want to obtain control over others, research topics to gain an advantage and earn bonuses that could make your journey easier. Keep in mind that there are 18 subjects, but you must accumulate sufficient points to open them. These can be acquired through completed tasks, such as combat and expansion.
It is recommendable to foster and evolve your town while obtaining research knowledge because you could equip your army better and be ahead of your opponents.
Although Ikariam provides engaging gameplay that can pull you in with its strategy requirements, there are many downsides to this game. For instance, at the moment (April 2021), it is impossible to load the app on Android. Other players face the same issue, and it turns out it’s been going on for at least one year. Hence, avoid it and turn to your PC instead.
Other than technical problems, Ikariam might not be for everyone. Despite its colorful visuals and bright graphics, the game suffers from a complete lack of sound. There is no music nor any in-game sounds. Some won’t mind it, but it is an element that can contribute to suspense, engagement, and feeling. Yet, this game doesn’t offer it.
If you love strategy games and have a lot of patience, you might love it
Ikariam is a slow burner. Even though the game continues flowing when you’re not playing, the progress is slow and requires patience and dedication. Since it’s currently not working on Android, many players could find this to be too much.
However, if you are a strategy enthusiast and don’t mind investing your time in a game, Ikariam still has rich content, which could end up being what you need.