The game runs on a day and night cycle, where you build and expand during the day, and defend the onslaught of enemies at night. The longer you survive, the harder it gets.
If your monarch is hit by an enemy, you will lose a number of coins proportional to the attack. Be warned, you have no invulnerability period after being hit. If you get hit when you have no coins, your crown will get knocked off of your head. If it falls into the ocean or is successfully stolen by an enemy, you will have lost that crown. A crown-less monarch may still pick up and drop coins as normal, but will be unable to purchase anything. The monarch that still has a crown will then have the option to craft their partner a new crown by paying them 8 coins. If all active monarchs lose their crowns, you lose the game.
Coins are the primary currency of the game, and are required to hire subjects, build defenses, and progress in general. There are many different ways that you can find coins, but you can only hold a limited amount in your bag before it overflows. Any coins that overflow out of your bag will automatically either be dropped on the ground or discarded into the water with a 50/50 chance. In multiplayer, coins are not shared; each monarch has their own coin bag. In order to share coins with your partner, you must drop your coins on the ground for your partner to pick them up.
Gems are the secondary currency of the game, and are required to activate special structures. They can only be found in gem chests. Gems are stored in the same bag as coins, but take up much more space. When attacked, gems will only be knocked out of your bag once you run out of coins, and can only be dropped on the ground if you have no coins in your bag. They can be stolen by greed, but if knocked out of your bag, they will never randomly fall into the water, unlike coins. Once something has been bought with gems, it is permanently unlocked for that save file; if the player gets a game over, they can re-purchase anything they had already unlocked with gems by paying with coins instead. There are a limited amount of gems that can be obtained per save file, so be cautious about losing them. If stolen, gems can only be recovered by destroying the cliff portal on the island where they were stolen.
Coin chests are automatically opened when a monarch walks by, and will drop (12?) coins on the groud. The monarch can choose to keep the coins safe in the chest by always running past the chest instead of walking, which will keep it closed. Coin chests spawn in random locations out in the forest, but the number that spawn on each island is predetermined. Research is still needed on how many spawn on each island.
Gem chests are automatically opened when a monarch walks by, and will drop 2-3 gems on the ground. The monarch can choose to keep the gems safe in the chest by always running past the chest instead of walking, which will keep it closed. Gem chests spawn in random locations out in the forest, but the number that spawn on each island is predetermined, thus there is a limited amount of gems a player can obtain per save file. Therefore, one should be incredibly cautious about losing gems. Research is still needed on how many spawn on each island.