Want to take your place among the alliance elite, do you? First you gotta prove you got the mettle to do more'n clean the mud off my boots!
Skirmish is an instanced battle activity in Final Fantasy XI and was one in Final Fantasy XIV. In both games, adventurers who successfully complete Skirmish exercises are rewarded with powerful and unique weapons or armor.
Skirmishes were introduced in the Seekers of Adoulin expansion. They are waged against otherworldly foes in a dimension similar to yet unlike that of Vana'diel. These sites are accessed via Augural Conveyors found hidden in the depths of Eastern Ulbuka.
Participation in Skirmish originally required a party of three to six players, although this restriction was later eased to allow for solo or duo attempts. All party members must have purchased and installed the Seekers of Adoulin expansion and have reached level 95 or higher on their current job. The party leader must be in possession of a Simulacrum key item, which is obtained by trading three Simulacrum Segments—specifically a visage, a torso, and legs—to Oston in Eastern Adoulin. These segments can be obtained through various activities in Eastern Ulbuka, including Reives, Coalition Assignments, and gathering activities such as mining, harvesting or logging.
Upon entering Skirmish, players are given a primary objective which must be completed in order to win as well as a secondary objective which may optionally be cleared in order to receive greater rewards. Secondary objectives are typically an extension of the primary objective, such as defeating additional monsters or surviving for a longer period of time.
- Cirdas Caverns [U]
Players are tasked with defeating a set number of monsters that appear within this Skirmish zone. As monsters are engaged or defeated additional enemies will spawn, and players must take caution not to be overwhelmed by these reinforcements.
- Rala Waterways [U]
Several Notorious Monsters appear throughout this Skirmish zone scattered among normal enemies, and adventurers are challenged to locate and defeat these Notorious Monsters within the set time limit.
- Yorcia Weald [U]
A Cantonment will be located near the entrance to the Yorcia Skirmish zone, and players must defend this base from waves of advancing enemies for a set period of time. Throughout the zone are several Bestial Dens which may optionally be destroyed in order to slow the advancing forces. While it is not necessary to actually defeat all enemies present in this zone, enemies must be prevented from destroying the Cantonment by some means in order to win.
- Outer Ra'Kaznar [U]
Collecting a set number of fenestral fragments is required in order to complete the Skirmish. Normal enemies provide one fragment when defeated, and Notorious Monsters throughout the zone may be defeated for several fragments. Each Notorious Monster must be approached in a specific manner in order to prevent it from using devastating attacks. For example, one might require the player to refrain from using Weapon Skills, whereas with another it might be prudent to avoid any form of magic damage. Fenestral fragments may also be occasionally obtained from chests or Noetic Ascensions that can be found throughout the zone.
The primary rewards from Skirmish include a unique set of weapons and armor, with pieces available for every job. Half of the base weapons are obtained from Skirmishes in Cirdas Caverns [U], with the other half coming from those in Rala Waterways [U]. Skirmishes in Yorcia Weald [U] reward players with armor or a shield, and players may also obtain a key item from this zone which is used to upgrade the weapons found in the previously mentioned zones. A second key item may also be found in Outer Ra'Kaznar [U] Skirmishes, which is used to upgrade the armor from Yorcia Weald [U] or to further upgrade the Skirmish weapons. Additional, items known as Ghastly, Verdigris, and Wailing Stones can be obtained from the various Skirmish locations. These stones may then be used to augment Skirmish weapons and armor with additional attributes for a small fee.
In the Legacy version, the Eorzean Alliance released monsters onto the islands of Locke's Lie and Turtleback in La Noscea for the purpose of joint exercises between the armies of the three companies. The Brugaire Consortium generously began sourcing Giantsgall weapons from Radz-at-Han as rewards for participants.
Participants must have sworn allegiance to one of the three Grand Companies before being permitted to join. Only Company members of Level 45 or higher could join, and had to form a party of four to eight members. The islands were accessed by small boats from Limsa Lominsa.
Skirmish battles came in two types:
In offensive battles, the party faced groups of monsters or large bosses in randomized order as they made their way around the island.
In defensive battles, the party faced gargantuan bosses in randomized order. Each had to be defeated in a timely fashion before another joined it. This was the more difficult of the two Skirmish battles.
The Giantsgall weapons were manufactured exclusively in Radz-at-Han. They are unique in that, unlike the rewards from other combat activities like dungeons and primals, these weapons can be melded with Materia. This is likely because they have been crafted recently, unlike the dungeon treasures made before the advent of Materia melding.
- The monsters used in Final Fantasy XIV Skirmishes are alternate versions of well-known Notorious Monsters, such as the Princess of Pestilence (opposite the Prince of Pestilence).