Ikariam is a browser based massively multiplayer online game in the strategy genre produced and maintained by Gameforge AG. The game is set in a world resembling classical Greece, with players being made tyrant of a small town, which they must expand and lead.
Upon registering, players are given control of a small town. The town's inhabitants pay taxes to the player or can be sent to gather resources instead. The game world is split into islands, each of which can support up to 16 players and their towns. Each island has its own saw mill for producing wood and one of the other buildings which produces a luxury resource.There are five main types of resources: Wood, Wine, Marble, Crystal Glass and Sulphur. They are available from the Sawmill, Vineyard, Quarry, Crystal Mine and Sulphur Pit respectively. All these resources are required to progress in the game, making resource acquisition through conquest or trading mandatory. If a certain resource is lacking locally the player may trade with other players to acquire it. Each island's inhabitants may cooperate and donate building materials to improve the efficiency of their island's resource gathering facilities, which enables all local players to obtain resources more quickly. Failure to do so may result in hostilities between island inhabitants.
On building an Embassy, one can join or found an alliance. Alliances are groups of players who work together. They will usually protect each other. If an alliance member is attacked by another player, the whole alliance, or stronger members in the alliance will intervene and will ward off the attacker.
If you are the leader of the alliance, how many members you can have in your alliance depends on your embassy level. Also, you get a small amount of "bonus" resources each day, depending on the number of people in your alliance. An alliance has two jobs that two members can be assigned by the leader.