Evony (formerly known as Civony) is an Adobe Flash-based multiplayer online game with graphic elements reminiscent of other similar real time games and is set in the European medieval time period. The player takes the role of a lord or lady and starts the game with a single small city where the player must build up internal buildings, like cottages, and external buildings, like farms, that produce resources (food, lumber, iron and stone), the basic building blocks for cities and armies in the game. Players must develop various technologies, recruit and train heroes, and enter alliances to make allies for both protection and for the purpose of attacking other players and alliances.
Evony is set in a persistent world during the medieval time period in which the player assumes the role of a lord or lady of a city or alliance. A new player is given "beginner's protection," which prevents other players from attacking their cities for a total of 7 days or until a player upgrades the town hall to level 5 or higher. This gives new players the opportunity to accumulate a few resources and troops and get accustomed to the game before other players can attack them.
All of Evony items must be purchased with cents which can be bought with real money, through its item shop in game or won at the wheel. Some items will accelerate the player's progression through the game. Winning items in battle is the primary way to acquire resources and cities.
The game features player versus player game play making it possible to attack another player's cities, and almost impossible for players who have not formed or joined alliances to survive.
The game allows the player to control up to ten cities through gain of titles. To gain a title, a certain rank is necessary. Both Title and Rank require Medals gained by use of in-game coins to purchase medal boxes, by attacking valleys or winning medal boxes from spinning the wheel.
The game has two different monetary systems. The in-game monetary system revolves around gold. Gold can be obtained by completing quests, by taxing the city's population as well as attacking NPC's. It is also possible to sell resources for gold on the marketplace or to trade resources with other players within a player's alliance for gold. A player can also use real money to buy game cents with which to purchase items and resources from the in-game shop. The images depicted females who, as the ad campaign continued, became increasingly unclothed, none of which had any relevance to the game itself. In 2009 Gavin Mannion commented that Evony "latest ad is seriously pushing boundaries of what is acceptable to publish on Google". Other ads used stock photographs from pornographic DVD covers.
Evony has also been accused of promoting the game via "millions of spam comments left on blogs". The company denies they are responsible for the spam.
Regardless of the widespread criticism of these advertising policies, the campaign was hugely successful. By late 2011, Evony counted 27 million registered users.
2009 legal action against blogger
On August 25, 2009, Evony's lawyers threatened to sue a critical blogger for defamation over a variety of allegations as to the game's provenance and the practices of the companies behind it. The developers of Evony denied the allegations from internet blogger Bruce Everiss and sent a cease and desist letter for defamation based on Australian law. Everiss responded by linking to a documentary which reportedly showed evidence of Evony fraudulent history. Shortly before the case was due to begin in Sydney, Evony parted with their legal team and asked for an adjournment of the case. After the adjournment, the case was resumed with a new hearing in March 2010. However, two days into the case, Evony withdrew the libel claim against Everiss.
2016 Evony.com gets hacked
During June 2016 Evony's complete user database was hacked. The database included all 33 million user accounts. Each account record contained the username, email address, password, and ip address. Evony never released an announcement regarding the hack publicly or to its users.
2017 Evony Server NA62 Gets wiped out
On May 12, 2017 the Evony Server NA62 crashed, wiping out all buildings in Historic Cities owned by players. Repeated emails to Evony LLC, and the parent company uCool Inc. were ignored by the companies. Many players who had spent real money, lost their investment, due to the server errors. The damages were later repaired by resetting cities to their previous state, though troops lost during the period were not returned and some particularly unfortunate cities were not repaired.