Illyriad Sovereignty Comprehensive Guide

Illyriad Sovereignty Comprehensive Guide by Manannan

Like the New Player Guide I posted this was not written entirely by myself. It is a collection of several forums threads I organised into what it is now about 3 months ago as a guide for WoT alliance. Credit I believe for the content goes to the Illyriad All-Stars, StormCrow and the Content Team. (Yes I realise this sounds like a bad 70’s pop group.)

There have been many people asking about sovereignty, so I have decided to share my notes with the community. Many thanks to ScottFitz for checking my information before publishing, hopefully I have corrected all errors properly. I know I’ll hear about it soon enough if I haven’t. Due to its size I’ve had to post in several parts… ENJOY



Sovereignty is an in game mechanism whereby player cities may stake a claim to territory on the map outside their city. Essentially, you are extending your empire outside the walls of your city, and getting the denizens of these squares to bend to your will, and support your city. Sovereignty is owned by the city that the claiming player claims his or her Sovereignty from.

There are different levels of Sovereignty, each providing additional benefits, options and bonuses to the holding city, player and/or alliance. Players may compete for Sovereignty over a square, either by putting in a competing claim of Sovereignty, or by capturing the city that holds Sovereignty, in which case whatever Sovereignty remains after the Siege is complete is transferred to the capturing player.


There are some inherent benefits to Sovereignty:

New Players will not have their first city seeded on a Sovereign square

Existing Players (except the Sovereignty holder) may not settle a new city on a Sovereign square

The Sovereignty holder may build Sovereign Structures on these squares that provide benefits to the owning city (more on these Structures below)

Different levels of Sovereignty on a square also provide defensive benefits to the player (and alliance) that holds Sovereignty.


You may claim Sovereignty on any square in the game with the exception of

a) Settled Squares (Squares with Towns on them)

b) the Impassable squares (Lake, Loch, Volcanic peak, Fiery mountain, Canyon & Swampland).

Different types of map square have different benefits and bonuses for Sovereign Structures. You may claim NPC Map squares for the purposes of Sovereignty and Sovereign Structures, and these have more exceptional bonuses.


There are 5 Levels of Sovereignty:


·         Only the Sovereign city may settle a new city on the square

·         Occupying, Blockading and Sieging (Hostile) Armies receive a 1% Penalty to Defense

·         Sovereign Structures Level I may be built


·         Only the Sovereign city may settle a new city on the square

·         Occupying, Blockading and Sieging (Hostile) Armies receive a 2% Penalty to Defense

·         Sovereign Structures Level II may be built


·         Only the Sovereign city may settle a new city on the square

·         Occupying, Blockading and Sieging (Hostile) Armies receive a 3% Penalty to Defense

·         Sovereign Structures Level III may be built


·         Only the Sovereign city may settle a new city on the square

·         Occupying, Blockading and Sieging (Hostile) Armies receive a 4% Penalty to Defense

·         Sovereign Structures Level IV may be built


·         Only the Sovereign city may settle a new city on the square

·         Occupying, Blockading and Sieging (Hostile) Armies receive a 5% Penalty to Defense

·         Sovereign Structures Level V may be built


I’m glad you asked. Nothing is for free. To claim Sovereignty on a square you have to win the hearts and minds of the NPC residents who reside on that square to work for your cause. n practical terms, this means providing them with Cultural and Scientific values (represented by Research Points) as well as hard, cold cash (represented by Gold). Claiming and maintaining Sovereignty will cost the claiming city an hourly upkeep of Gold and Research Points. This hourly upkeep is modified by two things:

a)      The level of Sovereignty you claim, and

b)      The distance of the Sovereign square from the claiming city


The formula for calculating the costs of a Sovereignty claim is as follows:

10 Research Points (RP) per Hour, and

100 Gold Per Hour

Each number multiplied by Sovereignty Level being claimed

Each number multiplied by Distance from the claiming City


Claiming Sovereignty II on the square directly to the North of your City will cost the following:

Distance: 1 Square

Sovereignty Level: 2

Research Points: 10 x 1(Distance) x 2 (Sov lvl) = 20 RP p/hr

Gold Cost: 100 x 1 (Distance) x 2 (Sov lvl) = 200 Gold p/hr

Claiming Sovereignty IV on a square 2 squares North and one square West will cost:

Distance: 2.23 Squares

Sovereignty Level: 4

Research Points: 10 x 2.23 (Distance) x 4(Sov Lvl) = 89.2 RP p/hr  (Rounded to 89)

Gold Cost: 100 x 2.23 (Distance) x 4 (Sov Lvl)= 892 Gold p/hr

Before you initiate a new Sovereignty claim or (an upgraded Sovereignty claim) on a square you will be informed of the hourly costs.


Well, firstly you’ll need to research some new Skills.

  • Sovereignty ~ Unlocks the Sovereignty skill tree. This Skill is a pre-requisite for any involvement in Sovereignty.

There are then 5 skills relating to how many Sovereign Squares you may claim from a particular city:

  • Serfs – Allows up to 3 Sovereign Squares claims per city
  • Peasants – Allows up to 6 Sovereign Squares claims per city
  • Thralls – Allows up to 10 Sovereign Squares claims per city
  • Lieges – Allows up to 15 Sovereign Squares claims per city
  • Subjects – Allows up to 20 Sovereign Squares claims per city

There are also new skills relating to the Level of Sovereignty you may claim:

  • Landholding – Allows you to Claim Sovereignty Level I
  • Tenancy – Allows you to Claim Sovereignty Level II
  • Fiefdom – Allows you to Claim Sovereignty Level III
  • Vassalage – Allows you to Cl
    aim Sovereignty Level IV
  • Feudalism – Allows you to Claim Sovereignty Level V

To start a claim for Sovereignty you will need to stamp your authority on a square – and this means sending an army to Occupy the square. The army does not need to remain on the square during the time it takes to claim sovereignty, it just needs to be there for the initial claim or Sovereignty upgrade. However, if you leave the army on the square, the time it takes to claim Sovereignty is halved. To start your claim, simply click on the Occupying Army and select “Claim Sovereignty”.


Sovereignty takes time to claim.

Sov I:   24hrs

Sov II:  48hrs

Sov III: 72hrs

Sov IV:  96hrs

Sov V:  120hrs

These are additive, and you must complete the claim for Sovereignty I before you can claim for Sovereignty II. Therefore Sovereignty V will take 15 days to achieve if you are not occupying the square with an army, and 7.5 days to achieve if you are occupying the square with an army.

During this period your Sovereign Claim on the square will slowly increase from 0% to 100%. Once 100% is reached, the square will take on the new Sovereignty level.


Mousing over or clicking on a square on the World Map will display information about:

Who owns (or is claiming/competing for) Sovereignty there

What the Sovereignty level is (and progression towards a new level, if appropriate)

What Sovereign Structures have been built there

The “Influence Borders” option on the World Map will also highlight claimed territory.

The developers are looking at putting icons onto Sovereign squares once structures have been built on them.


Go to the New “Sovereignty” tab in your Castle

Select the square you wish to give up sovereignty on from the list

Select “Cease Claim”

Your Sovereign percentage will begin dropping (from 100% to 0%) at twice the speed it took to claim Sovereignty in the first place.

When it reaches 0%, the Sovereignty level will be lost, and any Sovereign Structures built on the square that relied on the Sovereignty level being in place will be levelled down as well.

NOTE:  If either gold or resource points ever drop to zero in that town, ALL SOV claims are immediately rescinded and begin to drop to zero automatically.


If the player has Sovereignty on the square already you must remove their Sovereignty before you can claim your own. You will need to match the Sovereignty Upkeep amount for that particular Sovereignty level, with – of course – your own Distance modifier applied, so players closer to the Sovereign square claim Sovereignty more cheaply.

In the event of 2 (or more) identical claims for Sovereignty on a square without anyone’s army on the square, the Sovereign ownership %age is “blocked” and will remain unchanged.

However, whilst an army from one of the claimants is occupying the square, their claim for Sovereignty will be paramount, and Sovereignty will be lost by the current player at twice the normal claim speed.

So, the procedure to sieze Sovereignty is:

Park an army on the square

Initiate your Sovereign counter-claim by clicking on the Army and choosing “Claim Sovereignty”

You will see how much this claim will cost you to compete, if you wish to proceed, select “Claim Sovereignty”

Hold the Square to remove your opponent’s Current Sovereignty Level until the Square returns to being non-Sovereign again. As your opponent’s Sovereignty levels fall, it becomes cheaper to maintain your counter-claim

Re-Initiate your own claim to build your own Sovereignty


We’re also glad you asked. Whilst a Hostile or Neutral Army is in Occupation of a Sovereign Square:

a)      The Sovereign Square holder will immediately cease to gain any Sovereign Structure Benefits from that square

b)      The Hostile or Neutral Army will siphon off the resources (being generated by a Resource Sovereign Structure) or the resources being pumped in (in the case of a Production Sovereign Structure) – see the post below for more details on Sovereign Structures.

The Army will fill to its carrying capacity, after which the additional resources are simply lost.

So, planting an occupying hostile army on someone else’s Sovereign Square is not only a method of siphoning substantial resources from the owning City, it can also be used to halt or reverse Sovereign claims.


Players will receive email notifications regarding Sovereignty Claims that involve them, as well as when hostile armies take posession of Sovereign Squares. Because the residents of that Sovereign Square are under your sway, they will also report the player name and town name that the hostile or neutral army belongs to, but they’re not educated enough to make a guess at military numbers – for that you will still need to scout the army’s location.



They are the meat between the resource-buns of the Sovereign sandwich. They allow cities to specialise in different production and support roles. When you have Sovereignty on a Square, you may build a Sovereign Structure on it, providing you have the required skill. These Sovereign Structures may be levelled up, but only to the same level as the underlying Sovereignty you currently hold. You cannot build a Level V Structure on a square that you only hold Sovereignty Level IV at. Once a Sovereign Structure is built, the serfs and peasants who live on the square set to work in the type of Sovereign Structure you built, providing additional benefits to the holding city. You may only build one Sovereign Structure on a Sovereign Square, and if you wish to build a different type, you will have to tear down the current structure first and rebuild from scratch.

Sovereign Structures fall into 2 Main Categories:

  • Resource Sovereign Structures
  • Production Sovereign Structures

There are 5 Levels of each Sovereign Structure, indicated as I through V. Taking them in turn:


These are:

  • Logging Camp – Bonus to Wood
  • Earthworks – Bonus to Clay
  • Mineshaft – Bonus to Iron
  • Gravel Pit – Bonus to Stone
  • Farmstead – Bonus to Food

Building one of these Structures provides %age bonuses to resource production in the holding city for the relevant basic resource type.


This depends on the resource distribution of the underlying terrain on which they are built.

The formula is:

[Sovereignty Structure Level] x [Relevant Resource Distribution] x 0.2 = %age Bonus

So, building a Logging Camp I on a square that has 5 wood underlying it will give:

1 x 5 x 0.2 = +1% bonus to Wood Production in the holding city.

On the same square, a Logging Camp V will give +5% bonus to Wood production in the holding city. Building a Logging Camp IV on a square with 7 wood will giv
e +5.6% bonus.

Again, players will be informed of what bonus the Structure will provide before they build the Structure.


These Squares have historically always been 0|0|0|0|0 squares (ie zero wood, zero clay etc). They have now been reseeded with semi-random permutations given 25 available ‘plots’ and you can see these permutations on the map now. By semi-random, we mean that certain square types have had a propensity towards a certain resource abundance:

  • Ancient Forests tend towards Wood
  • Barrows tend towards Clay
  • Abandoned Mineshafts tend towards Iron
  • Standing Stones tend towards Stone
  • Dolmens tend towards Food
  • Ruined Towers have a random propensity

So one might find an NPC square with (eg) 20 Food on it, and building a Farming Community V here would provide:

5 x 20 x 0.2 = +20% Food Bonus to the holding city

***NPC squares remain unsettlable to new towns.*** NPC Faction spawns (and NPC resource spawns) on these Sovereign-held NPC squares will continue as usual, and will co-exist peacefully.


Resource Structures do not cost any additional upkeep, beyond the cost of maintaining Sovereignty on the square (Gold and Research Points).


These are:

  • Cattle Rancher              – Bonus to Livestock
  • Bladesmith                    – Bonus to Swords
  • Renderer                      – Bonus to Leather Armour
  • Farrier                          – Bonus to Horses
  • Bowyer                        – Bonus to Bows
  • Poleturner                     – Bonus to Spears
  • Bridlemaker                  – Bonus to Saddles
  • Plate Forger                  – Bonus to Plate Armour
  • Armourer                      – Bonus to Chainmail Armour
  • Engineering Yard          – Bonus to Siege Blocks
  • Papermill                      – Bonus to Books
  • Brewers’ Yard              – Bonus to Beer
  • Finishing School             – Bonus to Diplomatic Units
  • Training Ground            – Bonus to Spearmen Units
  • Target Range                – Bonus to Ranged Units
  • Military Academy          – Bonus to Infantry Units
  • Jousting Yard                – Bonus to Cavalry Units
  • Assembly Yard                         – Bonus to Siege Units

These Structures provide bonuses to the speed at which your city produces items and units. The speed increase is an increase to the number of items produced per hour in that city, and it therefore slighty differs from upgrading the underlying building, although the net effect (things get built faster) remains the same. On the production menus for each building in your city you will be given additional information on “Items Produced Per Hour”, and how Sovereign Structures are affecting this number. Please note that we do not currently have Production Structures that increase either Mana, Gold or Research Points – although this may change in the future.


Depending on the focus taken by the city, the Square Chosen, Sovereignty Level claimed and Structure Level built… “a lot”. Cities can now specialise in production areas – both of secondary resources (Livestock, Swords etc) as well as unit types (Cavalry, Diplomats etc).

All Production Sovereign Structures give an increase to the hourly production speed of the Sovereign Holding town for the Structure’s bonus type, according to the following formula:

( 5 + [Additional Terrain Bonus] ) * [Sovereignty Structure Level]= %age Bonus

Whilst you can build any Production Structure on any Sovereign Square, different Terrain Types give an additional 1%, 2% or 3% bonus to the per Structure Level figure. So instead of the %age Bonus running from 5% to 25% (for Sovereignty Structure I through V), it can also run from 6% to 30%, 7% to 35%, or 8% to 40%.

These Terrain Types and Extra Bonuses are:

Terrain Type                            – Structure                               – Production Bonus 

Rocky outcrop                           – Farrier                        – Horses +3% per lvl

Fertile ground                            – Farrier                        – Horses +1% per lvl

Bountiful land                            – Cattle Rancher            – Cattle +3% per lvl

Alluvial plain                             – Cattle Rancher            – Cattle +1% per lvl

Abundant crops                         – Brewer’s Yard            – Beer +3% per lvl

Treacherous mountains              – Brewer’s Yard     &nbsp
;      – Beer +2% per lvl

Fertile orchard                           – Brewer’s Yard            – Beer +1% per lvl

Rich Clay Seam                        – Papermill                                – Books +3% per lvl

Abundant Clay                          – Papermill                                – Books +2% per lvl

Wooded land                             – Poleturner                               – Spears +3% per lvl

Light woods                              – Poleturner                               – Spears +1% per lvl

Sharp crags                               – Bladesmith                  – Swords +3% per lvl

Mountains                                 – Bladesmith                  – Swords +1% per lvl

Thick Forest                              – Bowyer                                  – Bows +3% per lvl

Forested hilltop                          – Bowyer                                  – Bows +1% per lvl

Turned Clay                              – Bridlemaker                – Saddles +2% per lvl

Heavy Clay Seam                     – Bridlemaker                – Saddles +1% per lvl

Clay seam                                 – Renderer                                – Leather Armour +3%

Exposed Clay                            – Renderer                                – Leather Armour +1%

Craggy peaks                            – Armourer                   – Chainmail +3% per lvl

Stony ground                             – Armourer                   – Chainmail +1% per lvl

Abundant Quarry                      – Plate Forger                – Plate Armour +3%

Lonely peaks                             – Plate Forger                – Plate Armour +1%

Bleak mountains                        – Finishing School          – Diplomats +2% per lvl

Scrubland                                  – Finishing School          – Diplomats +1% per lvl

Wooded Glade                          – Training Ground          – Spearmen +2% per lvl

Tundra                                      – Training Ground          – Spearmen +1% per lvl

Dense Forest                            – Target Range              – Archers +2% per lvl

Clearing                                    – Target Range              – Archers +1% per lvl

Moor                                      &nbsp
; – Military Academy       – Swordsmen +1% per lvl

Rich quarry                               – Military Academy       – Swordsmen +2% per lvl

Fertile pasture                           – Jousting Yard              – Cavalry +2% per lvl

Open Plains                              – Jousting Yard              – Cavalry +1% per lvl

Landslip                                    – Assembly Yard           – Seige Engines +2%

Wooded Quarry                        – Assembly Yard           – Seige Engines +1%

For anyone interested, these bonuses have been (apparently) allocated to square types based on what makes sense (ie Woods for Bows etc) as well as abundance/scarcity. The higher the bonus, the more scarce the square.


Unlike Resource Structures, which simply cost whatever the Sovereignty Claim Cost is, Production Structures cost more. You need to supply these Production Structures with materials from the Sovereignty-holding City to keep them assisting you in building the final product faster. These resource upkeep costs are instantaneous: ie you don’t need to ship them via caravan to the Sovereign Square, they’re debited from your City’s resource income automatically.

These additional resource costs for Production Structures are fixed rate by Structure Level, and do not vary by distance.

Production Level I:   150 of each Wood, Clay, Iron & Stone p/hr

Production Level II:  300 of each Wood, Clay, Iron & Stone p/hr

Production Level III: 600 of each Wood, Clay, Iron & Stone p/hr

Production Level IV: 1200 of each Wood, Clay, Iron & Stone p/hr

Production Level V:  2400 of each Wood, Clay, Iron & Stone p/hr


There are new skills: lots of them. I’m not listing them all here, but there are 5 skills per Structure – one for each Structure Level – and the city that wishes to build the Structure will need to have researched the appropriate skill for that Structure.

These new skills will be underneath the appropriate research type and have the appropriate pre-requisite. As examples:

The 5 skills required to build a Logging Camp V will appear under Carpentry in the City research menu.

The 5 skills required to build a Training Ground will appear under Spear Mastery in the Military research menu.


Go to the Sovereignty submenu in the Holding City’s Castle, and provided you have:

The appropriate skills researched,

Sufficient resources to build,

The appropriate level of Sovereignty on the Square for the level of Structure you are constructing

… you will be able to start the building your Structure here.

Sovereign Structure construction does not appear in your building queue, nor does it take up a building queue slot – as the construction is being built elsewhere by your denizens on the Sovereign Square. You can however see progress towards completion in the Sovereignty submenu.

The cost (and time) to build a Sovereign Structure at a particular level is given on the Sovereignty submenu in the Castle, but broadly follows the appropriate city building pairing (eg):

Logging Camp I – same as Lumberjack at Level 1

Logging Camp II – same as Lumberjack at Level 5

Logging Camp III – same as Lumberjack at Level 10

Logging Camp IV – same as Lumberjack at Level 15

Logging Camp V – same as Lumberjack at Level 20


Q. Will I see incoming Hostile or Neutral Armies that are attacking my Sovereign square on the Events Timer? 

A. No. No, you won’t. You will, however, get an ingame mail when the army arrives at the location, and your denizens will report on which player and town the army belongs to.

Q. How do I destroy another player’s Sovereign Structure? 

A. By competing with that player for Sovereignty on the Square (see above). For the avoidance of doubt, you cannot Siege or Blockade Sovereign structures. An alternative route is to destroy the city that holds the Sovereignty. When a Sovereignty-holding city is razed, all Sovereignty and Sovereign structures are lost. When it is captured, Sovereignty (and its benefits/costs) transfer to the player who captured the city.

Q. Where will the emails regarding Sovereignty changes, challenges and Hostile Occupations go? 

A. They will be in your Inbox, and there will be a new filter category called “Sovereignty”. When we revamp the mail system in its entirety, these will be filterable by town, as well as have blanket rules applied to them (such as “I don’t want emails regarding X”).

Q. Can I defend my Sovereign Square? 

A. Of course! To all intents and purposes it is just another square on the map, but with some special bits plugged on top.

Q. When will the Sovereign Square graphics arrive? 

A. Soon.

Q. More than 100 new skills? Are they insane? 

A. Yes. Although they add that many of these additional skills are going to feed into the Crafting update which will follow along in the fullness of time.

Q. My, those hourly resource costs for Production Structures look high! You must have minmaxed the numbers in your model when you designed this system, so what can a very large, focused city produce if it specialises massively? 

A. Well, it does depend on a lot of variables. We like variables. But a production speed increase of more than 250% in a particular production area is very (self-sustainably) achievable. More so, if suitable supplies are made to the focused city. Further opportunities to specialise cities will be forthcoming.

Q. Isn’t that going to completely change the Illyriad Economy? 

A. Yes indeed. It’s the first book in a trilogy of books entitled “Whither Illyriad’s Economy?”. This update addresses many (but not all) of the imbalances that currently affect Illyriad’s economy, whilst simultaneously spurring additional opportunities for conflict via strategically important terrain squares, as well as providing additional requirements and incentives for players to specialise in particular areas – and therefore to also work together. Part 2 will be the Trade overhaul, and Part 3 will be Crafting.

Q. Isn’t this going to cause a lot of conflict, especially over the mega-food and production bonus squares? 

A. Gosh yes, we hope so.

Q. Are you planning to allow Caravans to accompany arm
ies? I could totally clean out City X by siphoning off 2,400 x 4 = 9,600 resources per hour by occupying a square with a single Sovereign V Structure! 

A. Yes we are, as part of the Trade overhaul. But City X might be unimpressed by your siphoning. And he’ll know who you are.

Q. Gosh. With both food constraints and military production bottlenecks being lifted, doesn’t this mean a City could whack taxes up to 100% and support a really huge army? 

A. Yes it does. Bear in mind, though, that – at the moment – the city would have to both produce and support the army as well, as there is currently no means of transferring soldiers from City to City and there are costs for producing soldiers (with the Gold cost for Sovereignty V). This will change in the Trade overhaul where units will become a tradable commodity, andentirely military-upkeep-focused cities will become a reality. You would be wise to keep this in mind when planning what Sovereign Structures to build.

Q. Doesn’t this system of Sovereignty penalise players & Alliances who have built cities next to one another (aka “Powerblocs” or “clusters”)? 

A. In some ways it does, and in other ways it doesn’t. The penalty is relatively small, in that the cities in the Powerbloc cluster can’t claim the cheapest Sovereignty on squares next to them, so they have to claim their Sovereignty further afield – which will cost them more to maintain. We feel that the benefit of a Powerbloc (for siege/blockade defense, travel times, etc) more than compensates – and it is reality that there should be competition for scarce resources in an overpopulated area. Plus the fact that a powerbloc is going to be able to *really* claim some chunky territory around it, even if it costs more. This will become highly valuable in the fullness of time, especially when we introduce Fog of War / Visibility further down the road.

Q. Are there future plans for other Sovereign Structures? 

A. Yes, very much so. These may range from new standalone structures for other production benefits such as Mana, Research & Gold, to crafting structures and – once we have Fog of War and Pathfinding in place – additive structures (such as roads) and military structures such as Watchtowers, Garrisons etc.

Q. So, what are the next dev biggies after the Sovereignty release? 

A. The long-promised new spell schools are next, followed by a focus on overhauling the Trade system. During this period we will also take delivery of the fantastic new City Map graphics and design, plus put some new reports, bugfixes and updates in place for items that people have been clamouring for (further reducing clicks, unit arrival times, military strength summaries, mail system revamp etc).

Q. What happens if I run out of resources to support my Production Sovereign Structure costs? 

A. When you run out of basic resources (wood, clay etc) the server will:

a) Choose the most recent Production Sovereign Structure built

b) Stop the bonus from it (and apply this lack of bonus to the remains of existing production orders)

c) Cancel your Sovereignty Claim on that square, and Sovereignty begins heading down

d) If this is insufficient to return your city to Positive resources, it moves onto the next most recently claimed Sovereign square and repeats

To get the building functioning again you’ll need to put an army back on the square and reinitiate your sovereignty claim. Once it gets back up to 100% and the correct level of Sovereignty is re-established, the Production Structure will provide its bonus again. If you don’t re-establish Sovereignty it will continue to drop, and when it reaches zero, sovereignty will level down entirely and the Sovereign Structure will also level down to the maximum supported level. Sovereignty will continue to drop down through the levels, until re-established. So, running out of resources is managable – but also potentially very dangerous.

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