Skirmish Density

I have been going through stages of my feelings for Lord of the Rings Online’s skirmish system.  First, I thought it could completely redefine my MMO game time.  After playing them and playing them, I experienced a burnout that I thought would not come from the fun little bites of play.  Finally, I think I have found a good middle ground.  Zubon is right, in part.  Onion Headline Syndrome can definitely be experienced by attributing skirmishes to what they are not.  They are not the game.  They are a super-dense Lord of the Rings Online experience.  In a vanilla MMO where combat is the majority of the game, skirmishes amp it up to the red zone.  And the old saying goes “too much of a good thing…”  Well, you know.

I really like that without really feeling the grind at all I have completed some Shire deeds through skirmishes.  One run through Protectors of Thangulhad nets me a barter star and enough legendary item experience to bring a fresh legendary piece to level 10.  Three daily skirmishes, and I can get ever closer to winning the legendary class item lottery.  And, my further choice of rewards from skirmish marks from potions to legendary item XP to costumes feels nice.  Yet, that is not all there is.

I dutifully pick up The Onion at the train station every Wednesday, and I would likely stop reading it if it were just headlines.  Sure, the headlines are the best part and the funniest, but if I just read the headlines there would be no downtime in between the spikes.  The spikes would be competing with the spikes.  Sandwiches need bread.  That’s how I feel about skirmishes after giving them some time to digest in my Lord of the Rings Online gameplay.  They are intense, compressed MMO play, and boy, would I get sick of them if they were the only new thing available.  For the quick hit I need, though, skirmishes deliver.

–Ravious
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2 thoughts on “Skirmish Density”

  1. YES YES! I was going to do a post on my blog about LOTRO’s skirmish system. I thought it was unique but I’m exploring other MMO’s to see what other systems are even comparable to this. Will WoW hijack this type of system. I really like that you can solo it, I was a solo type of player in my 1 month of playing.

  2. Skirmishes are a great system overall. It allows me to jump into content and do something, make some progress, solo. In a genre where you often can’t do anything without a group once you hit max level, it’s nice.

    Not everything works with this system as intended, however.

    1. The “randomness” of skirmishes doesn’t seem to change my play experience. It’s still just DPS the heck out of the boss when he appears.

    2. Making a skirmish “group”, a higher level or a higher tier isn’t rewarding. My skirmish_marks-per-hour rate is faster if I just do a skirmish solo, one level below my current level and do the same skirmish over and over

    3. Skirmish marks are the fastest method to get some things (empowerment scrolls, settings). For other things, skirmish marks are an insanely slow way to get things.

    Really, if they just made group skirmishes give about 100% more skirmish marks, it’d make forming a group for skirmishes more viable imo. For me at this point, skirmishes are mostly a solo grind with a lot of potential to be /fixed.

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