After its success with the Lineage franchise, developer Netmarble is now taking on the world of strategy war games. Iron Throne is packed full of modes and features, from AR dragons to RPG quests, but at its heart this is about castle building and MMO battling.
Make your transition from rookie to ruler that much easier with our beginner’s guide to Iron Throne. You’ll learn the basics, from establishing your citadel to assembling an alliance, and gain a head start on fellow newbies.
The story so far...
In the beginning, there were warriors locked in a battle over the Tellurian Empire. Dark wizard and overall dodgy dude Infidus rose up to seize control, but was banished by the good wizard and overall decent bloke Liveratus. That fractured the world and buried the magical power of this ancient age in another dimension. For a time there was peace, but with Infidus and his hoards clawing their way back into this dimension, another hero must emerge to stand up against him – that’s where you come in. Build your kingdom and your army, then take on the powers of evil. It’s your destiny, after all.
Ah, home sweet home. Your citadel is your little slice of this vast kingdom, an elaborate fortress dotted with pretty trees and water features. As you level it up, it grows ever more palatial – although it’s hardly a shabby one-bedroom flat to begin with. Your citadel lies within a huge world map full of mountains and grassy plains, with other online players in nearby citadels as your friendly (and not so friendly) neighbours.
As you progress in Iron Throne, you’ll construct various buildings with various functions, from barracks and training grounds for your troops to mines and farms for your resources. Gathering resources is the main way to grow; you’ll need plenty of food, wood, stone, iron and silver to become a powerful lord. You’ll also be able to protect your citadel with shields – vital for dissuading rival players from invading and laying waste to your army.
Troops do the hard work so you don’t have to. They fight, train and fight some more, whilst you survey the affray with your feet up. Your army in Iron Throne consists of four main troop types: melee, cavalry, archer and siege. In battle, your troops’ strengths and weaknesses are partly determined by a rock-paper-scissor-style arrangement: archer beats melee, melee beats cavalry and cavalry beats archer – while siege sits separately.
Troops need a place to learn their fight-craft outside of the battlefield, so it’s down to you to build a Training Ground, Archery Range, Stable and Siege Workshop in your citadel. These can then be upgraded, which in turn allows you to up the tiers of your various troop types. Similarly, you’ll need Barracks, a Command Centre and an Academy to benefit from troop boosts and research.
Choose your Heroes
Your Heroes are your ace cards in battle. Each of these warriors is unique, from how they look to their individual skills – called Traits – and they’ll lead your troops into battle for a devastating advantage. There’s Viking lookalike Haral Ivarson, sly samurai Mikoto Konoe, knight of the realm Maria Castillo, and many more to unlock as you progress. Just as your citadel can level up, so can each Hero, you just need to conquer enemy castles, hunt monsters in the World Map and use the Hero XP items you’ve gleaned.
Outfit your Heroes with the best equipment you can find to maximise their power. Equipment comes in six grades of rarity, with Immortal being the cream of the crop, and each item can be upgraded and enhanced once you’ve advanced your citadel’s Research level sufficiently. As well as armour and weaponry, you can equip Runes and Auras, which apply helpful game-wide buffs.
Heroes can help off the battlefield, too. Some of their Traits can improve your resource gathering speed and production rate, adding more to the stockpile so you can build your citadel up more quickly.
Games within games
The main World Map, where you can view your citadel in all its 3D glory, is just one of the game modes Iron Throne has to offer. You’ve got four others to get to grips with (as well as a bonus augmented reality feature, which we’ll get to later). Let’s start with the PVP tournaments.
Unlocked once your citadel is level 12, Battle Royale throws you in an arena amongst 20 players in a free-for-all fight to the last lord. Unlike PVP in the World Map, losing here might dent your confidence, but it won’t cost you troops or resources. You’ll also begin the battle on par with your opponents; every lord is given equal Heroes, skills, equipment and research, levelling the playing field so that winning comes down to strategy above all else. The better you do in the tournament, the bigger the reward at the end of it.
Participating in Team Deathmatch also guarantees no loss of troops or resources, and a level playing field. The difference is rather than 20 players brawling to the last lord standing, this is 20 versus 20. You’re assigned a side, and fight hard in tandem to take down the other team. You’ll unlock Team Deathmatch once your citadel is level 14.
Except for its Arena side-tournament, Dimensional Battle is PVE. It’s the main story mode of Iron Throne, where you’ll become embroiled in fisticuffs with the armies of Infidus, and it’s unlocked once your citadel is level four. Teleport into the menu via the shiny dimensional gate in your citadel to begin progressing chapter by chapter. When you enter a battle, you’ll see an arena of two halves. On your half, you can arrange your troop make-up and formation ahead of time based on the enemy’s, keeping in mind the rock-paper-scissor system for troop types. The fights themselves don’t take long, but you can speed things up by as much as four times and skip the cool close-up cut scenes if you’re eager for the next chapter. Potential rewards include Auras, buffs, Hero XP and more.
Quite distinct from the others, Town Quest mode feels more akin to an MMORPG like Netmarble’s own Lineage 2: Revolution. You control the Lord’s right-hand – Lauren – who’s particularly handy at dispensing invading dire wolves, as she assists NPC villagers with various errands. As you complete Daily and Epic Quests, you uncover more strands of the story, as well as earn helpful buffs as rewards.
And finally, for a real novelty, there’s the AR mode. Get your citadel to level 15, and your citadel’s dragon will awaken from its petrified slumber. Jump into AR, and you can watch it fly around you through your mobile camera. Toss it some virtual food to trigger one hour of VIP benefits.
Be sure to complete the various events that crop up regularly on Iron Throne to benefit from a ton of rewards. Points Events occur daily, and range from slaying a set quota of monsters to training a certain number of troops. Rewards are based on the number of milestones reached within the time limit, and the total points gained against rival players. The better you do, the bigger the reward. Raid Events are less regular, and involve alliances from across the land locking horns with the Death Knight in an all-out competition. Battle Royale and Team Deathmatch also feature two daily events, accessible via the Battlefield menu.
There’s no ‘i’ in team (there is one in ‘alliance’, but that’s not the point). Alliances are Iron Throne’s guilds, formed by groups of fellow players in an effort to create a more formidable fighting force. Aside from the offensive advantage, you’re also in a safer position as a member of an Alliance; you can request assistance to repel invasion, help Alliance members being invaded, and speed up daily tasks for each other. The more you help, the more Alliance points you build up – spendable in the Alliance Shop where you can pick up buffs and resources.
They’re the basics covered. In the beginning, make sure you follow the instructions given by Jorya, your wise oracle in a hoody; her tutorials will get you set up in lightning-quick time so you’re not stuck staring at menu screens with a baffled expression on your face. Keep an eye out for our future Iron Throne tips and tricks, too.
If you feel ready to build your kingdom, form firm alliances and battle the forces of evil, download Iron Throne for free from Google Play and the App Store.