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Raiding 101
Raids are large pieces of game content almost always culminating in at least one boss fight or more. Imagine Raids as advanced versions of Skirmishes; scripted content that exists in a game instance, but also requires larger groups of players, usually somewhere between 12 to 24 people.

Why do People Raid?
 
There are two reasons to raid, one obvious and the other less-so. In-game rewards for completing a Raid can include Gold, Legendary Item experience points, player character experience points, shiny new armour, shiny new weapons, special usable items and more.
 
However, another kind of reward exists beyond the in-game variety. Much like defeating a particularly challenging boss in any video game, defeating a Raid boss (after overcoming the challenges of any given Raid) can be an incredibly satisfying feeling. Players who manage to successfully complete a Raid only do so through significant levels of cooperation, and the satisfaction of victory is shared (and multiplied) by all who participate.
 
Click here to get some tips on defeating LOTRO's newest raid boss, the mighty dragon Draigoch!

Starting a Raid

Once a player's character has reached the minimum required level, almost any Raid can be started with "Instance Join" – click here to learn more. This works for any instance released pre-Rise of Isengard, but any new instance (like those found in Rise of Isengard) requires a player to first locate the instance gate before being able to start one from the Instance Join panel.

Players that are new to Raids to may want to familiarize themselves with how a Raid works by playing The Rift of Nûrz Ghâshu. "The Rift" is a level 50 Raid designed for 12 players, so consider trying it at level 75 with less people. This won't present a huge challenge but The Rift is a classic Raid, making it a great way for new players to learn-by-doing.
  • Press "Ctrl+J" on your keyboard to open the Instance Join panel:
 
 
  • With the "Classic" tab selected, sort instances/raids by "Min Level" and look for the level-range fitting for your Raid group:
 
 
  • Once a Raid group is fully formed, all that's left to do is click "Travel Now" to begin the raid:
 
 
Tips for Raiding

The following tips are designed to help LOTRO players who've yet to enter (or start) a Raid group take their first steps.
    • The more people you know in LOTRO, the easier it is to Raid. Players who make great Fellowship members can also make great additions to your Friend List. Moreover, friendly and active players that are part of a Kinship (LOTRO guilds) will usually know how to go about joining said Kinship.
 
    • To make coordination easier, it's highly suggested to use voice-chat when raiding. Having one voice as the Raid leader will significantly help coordinate everyone's efforts.
 
    • It's recommended players take time to understand what's expected of them within a group setting. Raids are basically much larger groups, and each class will fall within one or two specific roles – learning these roles (and the roles of others) will help make things easier for players new to raiding.
 
    • After a defeat, take some time to discuss what went right and wrong during the Raid. Perhaps a new tactic will emerge from the discussion.
 
  • After boss fights, take some time to check Combat Logs for color-coded information. This makes it possible to pinpoint places where things went right or wrong, from a Skill-usage standpoint.
Final Thoughts

While raiding is certainly a challenge LOTRO, it's never been easier to start. This guide is just a primer for the real meat of learning the ins-and-outs of Raids, but we hope players unacquainted with the feature find themselves ready to give their very first Raid a go!