Skirmish, or skirmish match, is a game mode in Black & White where the player must face from one to three AI opponents on equal terms, on specially designed maps.
The skirmish maps always have some kind of symmetry to ensure balance between opponents. A common element on all these maps is that they always have one village or miracle dispenser at the center, which will normally provide a big advantage to whoever gains influence or control over it first.
The game ends when only one competitor remains. This is done by destroying the opponents' temples, which in turn is done by taking control of all his villages to deprive them of any influence, then proceed to destroy the building.
The skirmish maps are also used in multiplayer matches.
There are three different maps that are used on skirmish and multiplayer. These can be seen below:
In skirmish against one opponent, each player starts with a basic Celtic village and an empty Indian village under their control. Note that the indian villages will slowly lose belief if no buildings are built and no villagers live there, also those villages possess offensive miracles not available in other villages, making it important for evil players to keep them. In the middle of the map, on a hill, is a miracle dispenser for the mega-blast miracle.
In skirmish against two opponents, the map is divided in three similar sections diverging only in the culture of the four villages present in each area. One player (or the player, against computer opponents) starts in a Norse section, another player starts in a Japanese section, and the last player is placed in the Celtic section. Note that neither the miracle food or miracle wood exist in this map. In the middle stands a Tibetan village with powerful miracles such as the Flock of Birds.
Playing on multiplayer is similar to playing against the AI - it is done in the same maps - however it allows cooperative gameplay (for example, two teams of two players each against each other, with allied players allowing each other to cast miracles within both players influence range) and has the added factor of human opponents.
As Lionhead is no longer offering active support for Black & White nor Black & White: Creature Isle, it is not possible to play using the originally intended online method. There exist a few workarounds to this however, as various programs can be used to play online via the game's Local Area Network (LAN) option.
Of particular note was the Black and White Resurrection project by King Warg, whose website its own client for multiplayer gaming. The site gained controversy after allowing players to download cracked versions of Black and White from its own download servers, and at some point in late 2014, the site and its download mirrors were shut down.