There are currently three game types in Ishar - Classic, Survival, and 

   Classic is the traditional Ishar play experience. You accumulate Experience
at a normal rate and when you die, you are shuffled off of the mortal coil for
brief time before being returned to your Inn.  You will have to return to where
you died, but you can retrieve your gear from your corpse.  

The downsides of dying are that you will lose any buffs you have accumulated,
your gear will likely be damaged and you will lose a small amount of
experience - but you have unlimited lives and can try to seek the favor of your
deity to protect you from death. 

   Survival is a game type that is more challenging than Classic and yet more
forgiving then Hardcore. You earn experience at 150% the rate of Classic. 
The downside is that if you die, all of your gear and money are reclaimed and
you must continue your journey with nothing but your wits and your skills.

   Hardcore, formerly known as "PermaDeath," is a game type that
dramatically alters the way Ishar is played. Traditionally, players would
seek the altar of Thurvun and pledge their souls for a higher risk, higher
reward play style. This mechanic has been streamlined and is now a simple
game type selection.

   In the Hardcore game type, your character is given one life and one
life alone. If your character dies, they are permanently dead. Your path
as a Hardcore character is one of solitude and harsh reality; the favor of
your deity cannot shield you from death, nor will your mortal resilience
save you when faced with the ultimate end. Even powerful effects like Die
Hard or Divine Intervention, which might save others from a killing blow,
offer you no reprieve. Your survival relies entirely on your skill,
cunning, and perhaps a bit of luck.

   As daunting as the Hardcore game type may seem, it carries with it its
own rewards. You earn Experience at twice the usual rate, and require less
Renown to increase your character's strength. The road may be perilous,
but the potential for rapid growth and progress is unparalleled.

See Also: Hardcore Remort Upgrades, Renown, Experience, Divine Favor