A WarLight game is played between 2 and 40 players, either human or computer-controlled. The goal is to conquer the entire map, or at least conquer enough to force your opponents to surrender.
WarLight games are highly configurable. This introduction will assume that default settings are being used.
The map is the center of attention in a game. The map is simply a collection of territories, where each territory is filled with a color that indicates the player that controls the territory, and a number that indicates how many armies are present on that territory.
Some territories can be controlled by neutral. The neutral armies cannot move, and simply sit still for the entire duration of the game until conquered by a player.
All territories controlled by players must keep at least one army on them at all times.
WarLight mainly utilizes the left mouse button, although there are hotkeys that can make playing more efficient.
Territories and bonuses can be selected and information such as what other territories connect to it as well as what how much the bonus will be for controlling this bonus.
Each turn goes through three phases: Deploying Armies, Attack/Transfer, and Confirmation. These phases can be seen in the upper-left corner of the interface. You can switch freely between the three phases just by clicking on the phase.
 Deploying phase
Each turn, you receive new armies that you can add to territories you control. While in the deploying phase, the game will inform you in the upper-left corner by saying something like:
- 0 / 5 armies placed
This shows you are receiving 5 armies this turn, and so far you've deployed 0 of them. Simply click on a territory you control to place an army there.
When done deploying, you can click Next Phase or simply click the Attack/Transfer link to go to the Attack/Transfer phase.
 Attack/Transfer phase
Attack/Transfer allows you to attack other territories or transfer your armies between territories you control.
Each army you control can only do one attack or transfer each turn. Games with multi-attack enabled allow armies to move long distances in a single turn, but this page will assume you're playing a game without multi-attack.
Since each army can only do one attack or transfer, that means each army can only move to directly adjacent territories in a given turn. If it moves to a friendly adjacent territory (either your own or a teammate), that's considered a transfer. If it moves to an enemy territory (either another player or neutral), that's considered an attack.
Transfers are simple, and always succeed. The army simply moves.
Attacks are more complicated. To fully understand attacks, see the basic combat page. Remember the rule of thumb is to always attack territories with at least twice as many armies as the defenders have.
 Confirmation phase
Confirmation lets you view your orders before sending them to the WarLight server. It will highlight all of your orders, and you can also examine them in the orders list.
The buttons in the lower left-hand corner can be used to accomplish a variety of tasks.
- Chat lets players speak publicly or privately with their team.
- History lets players look backwards in time in the current game to see previous turns and the orders placed in them.
- Settings shows you the settings of the current game as well as what template and tournament (if any) this game is connected to.
- Players opens up a list of players with information about them. It also contains options to surrender or vote to end the game.
- The Statistics Window shows you interesting information about the game.
- Nudge/Boot lets users nudge players who are slow to take their turn or boot players who are holding up the game.
- Fullscreen makes the game window bigger, although players can also try using the F11 key to put their browser into fullscreen mode.
- Refresh causes WarLight to check the server for updates, which includes new chat or checking to see if the turn advanced. It also updates automatically as indicated by the green bar.
 Players Summary
The bottom right hand corner of the interface shows the players (and, in team games, what teams they are in).
Clicking on a player's name opens up a menu showing:
- A link to view the player's full profile
- The player's average move rate, both across all games and for the last ten turns of this game.
- Their tagline
- Send private messages (if enabled by the game creator)
- Visible armies, income, and number of territories in this game.
- If they're a teammate, players can view the orders that they've committed.
- A button to report the player if they're breaking WarLight's rules.
- A button to select their visible armies. This helps visualize their empire.
- The left side of this pop-up shows their surrender status, including who has accepted their surrender.