Currently, the query engine adds a SKIP stage on the top of an execution tree after projection analysis. The consequence is that the server does the work of computing projections even for documents which are thrown away due to the skip.
This can be reproduced by the following script:
I have run this script against both 2.4.10 and 2.6.3. For the first query (the one with the projection), 2.6.3 is two or three times slower than 2.4.10. When the projection is removed, the performance of 2.4.10 and 2.6.3 is about equal (actually, 2.6.3 is maybe a little faster).
This slowdown is likely due to computing projections for the skipped documents. As a performance optimization for skip + projection queries, we can apply the projection after the skip.