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Simone B.
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re: Skirmish general guide

I found this in the backups we made in the past from the previous site.
I thought it was worth sharing.

Simone B. wrote:

Ok, here it is, right from (no more available)

Guide to skirmishing

Right after you reach level 20, in your mailbox you found a summons from some Skirmish Captain, asking you to head for a skirmish camp near the major settlements...what now?

Skirmishes are a good addition to the game, but there's little information on them, and a fair bit of confusion surrounding them (especially if you see them for the first time).
The most important feature of skirmishes, is that they are scalable. Each of them can be set to either solo, duo, 3 man, 6 man,
or 12 man "sizes", and within those "sizes" they can be further adjusted to tune the difficulty (tier).
The level of the mobs found in the skirmish can be adjusted between the minimum and maximum values for that skirmish,
making them harder or easier for the player, or fellowship, to complete.
So, how does one go about getting set up for these skirmish thingies? The first thing to do is follow the instructions on the note you received in your in game mail... and complete the quest it sent you on.
The note directs you to visit a skirmish camp, and to talk to a captain there. He'll send you on a few quests, two of which are skirmish tutorials that impart the basics of the skirmish system to you, grant you a soldier, and as a final reward, give you some attributes to apply to that soldier. This last bit can be important - it might be the course of wisdom to decide what Role you want your soldier to fill before finishing this last quest, since it's a pretty good kickstart into a chosen Role.

There are 6 Roles that soldiers can fill: Archer, Bannerguard, Herbalist, Protector, Sage, and Warrior.
Each Role focuses on a particular aspect of a battle:
- Archers focus on defeating foes, specialized in ranged critical
- Protectors focus on drawing aggro and raising their threat levels.
- Bannerguards provide support to the fellowship, and Sages provide debuffs to the foe.
- Herbalists provide individual heals, group heals, and healing over
- Warriors focuses on dealin Area of Effect attacks that bypass
enemies armour (much like champions).
Protectors, bannerguards, warriors will stay in front of you in the battlefield (so ofter they draw aggro on mobs if you are not careful), while herbalists, archers and sages stay behind you.
My recommendation is to look seriously at your own playstyle and look for a deficiency, and decide how best to remedy that deficiency with a soldier Role.
You're not stuck with the Role you choose at the end of the quest, but it will cost you in Skirmish Marks to change Roles... and those are best used in the early going, to improve your soldier in the Role you choose as a quest reward.

So, you've done the Tutorial, you've got a new soldier buddy, a Role, and a couple skills. All set to hop into a new skirmish and give it a whirl, right?

First off, one of the shortcomings of the Tutorial is that it doesn't
explain how to start skirmishing.
I'll get to that in a second, because there is another important detail that you will have missed. The Tutorial gave you a
Role and some Traits ... but you haven't equipped them onto your soldier yet. You need to talk to the Captain, again, and "Manage Traits." You'll find a panel much like your Trait panel at a Bard. These are traits for your soldier. The top line, with 4 open slots, labeled Attributes, is where you set the soldiers Role, by swapping in and out "Role" attributes.
You can only have one Role active at any time, so if you're changing from the default "Warrior" role you got in the Tutorial, you'll have to click on it in the Attribute field, and drag it over to the "storage" area on the right.
Then you can drag in any other Role attribute you may have.

Special note about level 30 or lower Players:
Your soldier, right now, is a raw recruit, only about the equivalent of a level 20 player.
If you're just around that level, and starting all this at level, you'reactually in a better state then level 60 players starting the Skirmish system now. Your soldier isn't starting that far behind you in skill, and you and he will be going into skirmises that are on-level with you. Higher level characters will want to back down the difficulty ratings on skirmishes, until they can boost their soldier to a point that it can contribute something in the higher difficulty settings.
Most of what I say here about difficulty setting applies far less to you then to higher level players, but it is still important for
you to be spending some time improving your soldier.

Important Note:
One thing that people seem to be saying, a lot, lately is that Skirmishes are "hard-core mode" or that you have to be a tank, or whatever.
This is *not* the case.
If you're having problems with Skimishes in general, or one in
particular, simply reduce the level.
Dropping it 2 levels makes a huge difference.
You don't gain Marks at the same rate, but you *can* complete it.
Also...and this is absolutely critical - maintain your soldier.
You'll have much more success when his Role and his Skills are at least the same level as the Skirmish you're attempting.

So, if you can only use one Role at a time, why are there 3 more open slots in Attributes? Those are for cosmetic attributes - the look of your soldier.
From the Cosmetics vendor at the Camp, you can barter for attribute traits that change the gender, race, and appearance of your soldier. These are slotted into the empty Attribute slots, at the Captain.
How do Attribute Ranks translate to Level?
While talking about traits, I should point out that you can tell roughly what level your soldier is at, by mousing over the traits in the skirmish panel (CTRL-K).
The tooltips there give you an equivalent level to rank for your
soldier's Role, and other traits.
If you click the bottom row of tabs, and choose something other then "Equipped" you can see that your soldier started out at level 29.

Skills, Training, and Personal Traits
You'll also have a few items under Skills and Training that you received for finishing the tutorial. If they are usable by your chosen role, you can slot them too. I should mention the last type of Trait - Personal - because there's a special thing about them.
These are Traits that you apply to your soldier, but they do not affect your soldier, they affect you so be sure to choose
something that will be to your advantage.
You next stop should be the Skirmish Trainer in the same camp.
This is the place where you barter skirmish marks for new Traits.
You were awarded with 180 or so Marks for the tutorial, go ahead and use them now.
At this stage there's no real point in saving them.
Please take note that, by default, this vendor only shows Traits that your soldier already possesses - to see new ones you have to uncheck that little box at the top.
Note that the Skirmish Trainer is not the only place to find newTraits.
Make sure you check the "Barter" option on the skirmish captain for the Ultimate skills.

Now you're ready to try your first skirmish...but you still don't know where to go or what to do to get into the system.
This is one of the beauties of the system, and a feature that makes Skirmishes perfect for that half hour wait while your group arms up and equips for tonights adventures.
You don't have to go "anywhere".
Hit CTRL+J and up pops the Skirmish-Join panel, with
a list of all the available Skirmishes (and instances).
You can join from here, you'll travel to the location of the skirmish, and when you finish it (or abandon it) you'll be
transported back to the same spot your were standing when you started it.
On this panel, you've a number of choices and modification options. Up at the top, first line, is Level.
Next is group size, with a dropdown listing solo, duo, 3 man, 6 man, or 12 man sizes.

Skirmish Types
There are two basic types of skirmish shown on the Join panel.
Some are "Offensive" skimishes and some are "Defensive" skirmishes.
The defensive ones, like Siege of Gondomon, have you defending a relatively static position as waves of enemies attack.
These are set to a rather tight schedule, as you complete a wave, the next will start.
Usually there are a couple breaks to catch your breath.
The offensive ones, like Trouble in Tuckborough, have you moving through a number of objectives towards a final encounter.
They're not scheduled - you can work through them at your own pace.
Skirmish difficulty is high. They are designed to be challenging for a solo player and his soldier, or for duo, 3, 6, 12 players and their equivalent level soldiers. Don't expect to succeed in them the first few tries, or you're likely to be dissappointed.
Remember that soldiers are an integral part of the skirmish system - you can't succeed at them, consistently, without well developed and outfitted soldiers, that complement the players in the group,
and each other.
When you get to the point of challenging Tier 2 and Tier 3 skirmishes it will be critical to have your soldiers up to snuff.
The same is true for succeeding with a smaller then recommended group, or with higher level settings.
Higher settings promise greater rewards, but you won't get them without spending some time now in the early days, getting that soldier some experience.
Last edited by Simone B. on 2012/11/14 21:30; edited 1 time in total

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