LOTRO Academy: 68 – Skirmishes Part 7

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LOTRO Academy
Branick and Pineleaf welcome Andang onto the podcast as a guest host for in-depth an discussion of Rescue at Nurz Ghashu and Storm on Methedras to round out our series on skirmishes in The Lord of the Rings Online™. In addition, we talk a bit about some of the upcoming changes in Update 9. Thanks for listening.

6 comments

  1. Very informative podcast.
    I ran the Storm on Methedras skirm about a week ago. I ran it with Lilikate on Arkenstone and found it easier than I expected it to be.
    Thanks for the warning that it can get tougher with rangers running off to confront different attackers. Now I just need to listen to all skirmish poddies again as my brain can’t contain all the information.
    Looking forward to auto loot, just have to keep an eye on bag 5!

  2. Tapkoh /

    The difference between Fornost and the Rift is that Fornost gave you nothing worthwhile. In the Rift, you can get some good level 50 gear, use them for cosmetics, class drops like instrument mentoring or LM cosmetic pets, etc. Fornost was a long instance for little to no reward. I like story as much as the next guy, but four hours and no side benefits? No thanks. That’s why nobody really ran Fornost.

    The Rift can be pretty quick. My last run only took a couple hours and it was just me (on my warden) and a burglar kinmate back at level 75. We brought in a few other kinmates at the end to fight Thaurlach so they could reap rewards after we did the work.

    Speaking of which, in the Rift skirm, we have someone sit by Golodir with a frying pan to start FMs to calm him down and they’re usually in a group with ranged dps. The dps can be within range of the green/blue FM buttons and within range of targets to kill. That way few people or hopefully nobody has to run back to Golodir. As to why use a weak weapon, Pineleaf mentioned it later on: Golodir’s morale doesn’t scale. A lucky crit (especially on a dps with huge critical multipliers) and you can fail the skirm by accident. Harder to kill him with a 1-2 damage weapon.

  3. Branick /

    Thanks for the comments 🙂 I don’t know if you could tell Tapkoh, but over the course of the episode I came to understand the reasons Pineleaf laid out for using the weak weapon against Golodir. As for his morale not scaling, um, why should it? Wouldn’t it be grand if we all got a morale bonus based on the size of our fellowship? Sarcasm aside, I understand how an increase in Golodir’s morale would make it easier, but I find it strange that both you and Pineleaf brought that up as the reason to use the weak weapon. I don’t know where that expectation comes from, since he’s supposed to be on our side, it’s only the mechanics of the skirmish that temporarily turns him, like a confusion spell in an old Final Fantasy or something. The the larger the group size, the stronger the group as a whole. There is no reason individual members of the group should be granted additional buffs, nor should there be. Yes, that means when Golodir turns, he can be quite fragile, but that also means that larger groups much coordinate better, which to me is just good design. That’s not to say everything about the skirmish is well designed, I suspect that exploiting the mechanics by using a frying pan wouldn’t be necessary if Golodir had better AI, or was unkillable. Losing the challenge of keeping him alive could be compensated for by increasing his attack proficiency. You could do the fellowhip maneuver to clear his head, or beat him until he comes to his senses (but is still alive). This would take longer and be more challenging as he’d basicly be another temporary boss to fight, perhaps with a shield bubble of additional morale to fight through during the boss fight portion). Either way you’d have to deal with the threat, and it would elimiate the accidental death of an NPC as an instant fail state which seems to the the complaint, and cause for using a weak weapon.

    So basicly yes, I completely understand why it’s used now. I really do, and if I’m ever in a Nurz Ghashu raid, I won’t have any problem using that tactic. Regardless, I still consider it a (minor) exploitation of a game mechanic to lessen a challenging aspect of the skirmish. It seems to be an exploit that’s become standard practice for many if not most players. I’d like to think that LOTRO players are confident enough to take on the challenge as intended, without resorting to such tactics, but for it to have gotten to this point suggests to me that some part of the design (in raids) is broken and should be addressed. I still think in smaller group sizes Nurz Ghashu is one of the best designed skirmishes in the game, but apparently the design doesn’t hold up in larger group sizes.

  4. Tapkoh /

    I’ll say this here too for everyone’s benefit. I can’t speak for Pineleaf, but I don’t expect his morale to scale to group size. The problem with his morale scaling poorly is that dps does not have that problem. Turbine doesn’t do scaling well.

    Every update, DPS shoots up high while other dps-dependent elements like threat for tanks does not scale nearly as high. It takes Turbine til the next update to get numbers right. Combine that with the fact we can craft our own death machines through LIs and it becomes way too easy to kill Golodir accidentally.

    That was the implication that was supposed to follow from “his morale doesn’t scale” but in hindsight it’s not exactly obvious. But I agree that another mechanic would be more interesting than pretending to be his wife and smacking him with a rolling pin or frying pan.

  5. Thoronlin /

    If:
    1) open tapping always implies auto-loot
    2) open tapping applying “everywhere” means in skirmishes too
    then indeed there will be auto-looting in skirmishes. But how would the buff/debuff tokens be handled, then? Upon defeating an encounter, would everyone get a token? Would everyone have a 1/n chance of getting one?

    Personally, I’m not convinced 1) and 2) are true.

  6. Pineleaf /

    Everyone in the group gets a set of tokens selected at random. So, if you are in a duo, both players get two tokens.

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