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Reader Comments (11)

Posted: Jul 17th 2008 4:22PM (Unverified) said

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My question when I create a new character on an MMO isn't "Which class do I play?" it's "Which healer do I play?".

The problem with healers I think is that yes, we do like to heal, and there's nothing wrong with that. There's just an issue when it comes to soloing (which most people like/need to do at some point), which will require you to do damage. Once someone has levelled for hours upon hours dealing damage and soloing mobs, they'll think they're the best at it (not everyone mind you), so they're bound to bring this to grouping too.

Most games don't require you in normal groups to just continuously heal, so if you're a good healer (everyone's topped up, has their HoTs on etc) and you can afford to throw a few damaging spells, why not? The problem arises is when people are getting to risky low hp and the healer isn't casting heals, and opts for killing the mob instead.

Healers can do damage to, there's no way around it, they just have to in order to progress in the other content. I think City of Heroes was great for that mind you (I played a Rad/Elec defender - not the best damaging spec but I could solo) and I play a PoM in AoC.

To answer the questions in the news post (I've gone way off topic here):

1. No I've never been asked to "just heal" as there's a time and a place for damaging spells, and if you're going to cast them make sure everyone is at a comfortable amount of HP.

2. I couldn't care less if I could DPS or not, unless it stopped me from progressing at a steady pace (in solo content).

3. I picked a healer to be the best at healing, if I could swap most of my offensive abilities to make myself even better at healing I would, as long as I could still do some solo grinding/questing I wouldn't mind at all.

4. Tricky question, but I'd have to say no. Not everyone likes to play a damage based character. We like the importance of being the healer in the group :)

Posted: Jul 17th 2008 4:28PM (Unverified) said

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I'm going to get beat around the head and neck area for this but...Age of Conan handled the situation of healers in an amazingly deft way that, in my opinion, easily surpasses WoW's solution and offers a successful blueprint that other MMO developers can follow.

In WoW I got a Priest, Shaman, and Paladin to the level caps. With every class you needed to spec and gear in a completely different manner to feel like you were getting anywhere and to get the really cool skills/spells

In Age of Conan?
- I seemed to find gear that was just as applicable for healing as it was for doing damage.
- The removal of single target direct heals was on Hell of an adjustment but it worked wonderfully in regards to overall class balance(tanks needed help, so don't start in with the "I couldn't out DPS HoTs!!11!" Tanks...needed...to...be...buffed...badly)
- You NEED to dps to actually make the most of your heals in many builds...and vice-versa

So the difference in my mind is mechanics. WoW is structured in a way that if you like healing, and JUST healing, then you can make out and your party won't have any reason to complain. In AoC if you are JUST healing then your party has every reason to ask you why you aren't DPS'ing also.

Overall I liked AoC much better because I didn't feel completely castrated when I wasn't in a party or with my party. The guy that wrote that guide wanted to make waves with the "You don't" statement, but as you'll notice he went on to elaborate that PoM's can deal damage. As I said, you're actually expected to since the Priest archetype is built with the intention that you'll do both.

Posted: Jul 17th 2008 4:29PM Arcaria said

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I played a shadow priest in WoW a while back and it was common for people to get pissed at me for not healing them in PvP. I just shrugged it off. I don't let other people tell me how to play a game that I'm paying for.

In instances it was different. I would fill whatever role I was understood to be joining the group or raid to fulfill. Also, I'd drop shadow frequently to heal the main healer or if he went down. That's just common sense though, but I've seen many secondary healer types fail to do it.

Posted: Jul 17th 2008 4:36PM Arkanaloth said

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as a healer player.. in multiple games (FFXI, EQ2, WoW, GW) I have to jump into this one.

1) yes actually I have been told to just heal.. in FFXI this was typical, course considering how lethal the game was to anything you didn't step to the front line at all, but my Inquisitor in EQ2 was a STOUT melee fighter and healer.. so being told to "just heal" was my cue to.. "just drop the group". Not like I couldn't reds solo effectively.

2) honestly I think the ability to DPS should be a part of any class as should solo'ability. Just cause you can toss out some heals doesn't mean you should hit like a limp wet noodle.

3) if I'm in a group.. I mentally drop into "heal bot" mode.. in that I won't actively attempt to DPS at all. IMO that's as much giving up of offensive ability that should be asked. Healing is often pretty involved anyway so it's not like you have much time for anything outside of auto-attacks...

Honestly in a game as supposedly harsh as AoC.. every class should be dangerous in combat.. healers especially so because not only should they be able to whap you a bit.. but they can.. in-turn negate incoming whapping.. No they shouldn't be dishing out damage like a warrior, but people should have to seriously consider if they really want to go through the trouble of taking a healer down due to their ability to just keep on standing.

Posted: Jul 17th 2008 5:14PM (Unverified) said

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Do you have any idea how many times I have had to explain that my tempest heals BETTER after he lets off a couple nukes? Do you know how hard it is for WoW and eq imports to mentally handle this? I am totally specced for grouping, have been since I hit 80. Part of my spec is an ability that stacks up to 5 times that increases my healing and reduces the mana cost. The stacks come from my dd spells.
I have just dropped group and rode off on a number of occasions recently when some genius dps decided to tell me how to play or a tank shouted me down for "drawing aggro". Granted tanking in this game is tough as hell, much tougher than hell since the shield patch, but with the current bugs on tempest buffs im GOING to get aggro. I know how to deal with it so shut up and do your own job! I have completely given up on pug groups anymore, im tired of giving the speech over and over.
Any healer in aoc that just stands in the back and spams lotus is not going to keep anyone alive. Its like a bear shaman trying to heal from the back row, pure moronic.

Posted: Jul 17th 2008 5:29PM (Unverified) said

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After playing alot of MMOs P2P and Free I still feel that the Classes that can heal always are needed. Due to game designs the player is pushed into Healing only. Using WOW as an example, with talent points if you aim at becoming a Shadow Priest you find you are looked at secondary to a warlock and so you are pushed into Holy/DIS(HEALER).

Im only saying this as it is one of the things that made me stop playing a healing class, you give all your time to aid others but find, when it comes to you vs mobs it just takes too long to kill. I feel all MMOs should put damage aswell as healing into talents. Such as "Renew" could heal and become at Damage over time spell when targeting a mob.

By doing this healers wouldnt be so hard to find when you need one.

Posted: Jul 17th 2008 7:05PM (Unverified) said

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AOC made hybrid healers like BS and TOS for a reason, to make the game more fun and interesting for the healer. I always get yelled at in groups because I get into combat with my BS, too be honest these people need to shutup. The BS heals better when it does more damage. Just let the healers heal like they should, they know what they are doing.

Posted: Jul 17th 2008 10:22PM (Unverified) said

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In AoC Healers are design to be dps as well it even go so far that some healers heals suck when they do not do dps at the same time.... That make AoC one of the better games for healer and more fun. But the wow noobs playing AoC do not get this part still....

Posted: Jul 18th 2008 2:01PM Ergonomic Cat said

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R U HEELR?

Warhammer will *require* healers to fight in many ways. I am happy beyond words about that.

Posted: Jul 18th 2008 3:51PM (Unverified) said

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I have played healer a few times int he past, and I have been asked to just heal once or twice. To be fair though, I think it depends on the situation. For me, I focus on making sure everyone has at least 70% HP and is buffed before I start doing damage. For tanks though, I will generally let them get down to 50%, becuse they can take it.

Thats another thing, it depends on whos damaged. Tanks arent really as high of a priority if you also have a caster that has the same percent left. A tank with 25% can usually last for 5-10 seconds with a couple mobs on them, in most games. A caster in the same situation will last till he gets hit again.

Posted: Aug 1st 2008 8:06AM (Unverified) said

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This has to be a misunderstanding. In AoC as a healer all you have to do is apply your HoTs (heal-over-time spells) and then you're free to deal damage for the whole duration of them (~15 seconds), applying a fast "instant" heal if necessary, which can only be used every 60 seconds.

Sure PoM isn't the strongest damage dealer, but it's not like you do not deal any damage at all! Plus, PoMs get crazy immunity skills which boosts their survivability a lot and can wear light armor and shields.

Tempest of Set (another healer class in AoC) on the other hand can heal nearly as well as PoM AND his damage is one of the best in the game!

Bear Shamans which are the third healer class are the best 1 vs 1 class due to their ability to kill most non-soldier classes in 1 shot with the right build. They have a HoT as well as a heal that triggers when they perform melee attacks.

So really, healers are VERY strong in AoC, dealing same damage like many dps classes. PoM is an exception, but they do get much better survivability which makes them the best group healers (as healers are targeted first usually).

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