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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » Where have the cool healers gone?

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  Elikal

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 2/09/06
Posts: 8067

“No path is darker then when your eyes are shut.” -Flemeth

 
OP  11/25/10 10:58:02 AM#1

I remember when playing healer was something awesome. You kept everyone alive, you were well respected and wanted, and people swollowed all your diva quirks and oddities, because you were so crucial to the group.

Now we have an ascent of soloism and self-heals everywhere, and many MMOs don't even feature real healers anymore. Gone are days when like in EQ you rolled strong healer because you loved being the background person who keeps everything together. Being healer was a sort of a role in itself, like being the wandering, hero-doctor. Just like CC and mezzing vanished due to soloability and making MMOs easy for everyone, classes which were once strong and needed for all the tough content vanish or fade into the background, and what remains are all jack-of-all-trades classes who can do a bit of everything but ultimately excel at nothing. It seems these days groups only know damage dealers or tanks, and even those are blended together more and more. I just don't like that.

On the one hand we have no MMos where more and more people just solo. The tons of solo content have made the need for healers so minimal, so yes you can still roll a healer, but you'll end up just healing yourself all the time. No one needs your talents.

Then we have games which just don't really have healers anymore. Games like Champions Online, where more or less everyone heals himself. Or LOTRO, who do have Runekeeper and Bard, but I never felt those were really healers. Yes they do heal, but the built & design just does not give me this feeling to be a "medic" in LOTRO.

Take the development of EQ2 as example. Once a lot of mobs were heroic. You NEEDED a group. You needed a good mezzer for CC and a REAL healer to keep everyone alive. Now, almost all mobs are soloable, most new quests are solo quests, and the remaining group quests are rarely ever done; good luck trying to find a group for THEM these days.

It's just disheartning. I loved to play healer in CoX and Vanguard a lot, and it was always nice to hear how good my healing service was at the end. It was fun to be so needed and specialized in something. But devaluating healers seems trend, see WOW. And soon everyone just heals himself, see SWTOR or whatever fashionable new MMO you like. MMOs which still have real healers, like AoC, I always felt those healers are just a pale shadow of their former selves. Neither Bear Shaman nor Templar were really so good and again it was REALLY difficult to ever get a group. Once playing healer was a guarantee to always have a group wanting you, which was the most fun part of playing healer.

I miss being able to play a good healer, these days. :(

/rant end

A forum is a place where people can discuss about different opinions. So what I don't get is, how people react offended when they come to a forum and then find... well different opinions. If a different opinion offends you, what are you even doing here?

  Miles-Prower

Novice Member

Joined: 2/26/10
Posts: 1117

I'm a Brony and proud. Friendship, Love and acceptance. What's not to love?

11/25/10 11:00:32 AM#2

I think you're overthinking things too much, honestly.

 

~Miles "Tails" Prower out! Catch me if you can!



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  rojoArcueid

Elite Member

Joined: 8/13/09
Posts: 5693

"It is double pleasure to deceive the deceiver". - Niccolo Machiavelli

11/25/10 11:05:40 AM#3

healers nowadays are not capable of hardcore healing.... devs wanna make us all suffer with crappy  1/4 heals, i never play healers, i rather summoners or scout(with pets) or just warriors, so i can solo peacefully with potions

  User Deleted
11/25/10 11:08:12 AM#4

ahh healing...

poor bastards don't actually play mmorpgs like the rest of us. just a really low tech version of whack a mole.

kinda wish they would evolve the mechanic to be more exciting and immersive.

  Elikal

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 2/09/06
Posts: 8067

“No path is darker then when your eyes are shut.” -Flemeth

 
OP  11/25/10 11:08:27 AM#5
Originally posted by rojo6934

healers nowadays are not capable of hardcore healing.... devs wanna make us all suffer with crappy  1/4 heals, i never play healers, i rather summoners or scout(with pets) or just warriors, so i can solo peacefully with potions

You and everybody else, alas. :(

A forum is a place where people can discuss about different opinions. So what I don't get is, how people react offended when they come to a forum and then find... well different opinions. If a different opinion offends you, what are you even doing here?

  gaeanprayer

Novice Member

Joined: 8/06/08
Posts: 2360

11/25/10 11:12:33 AM#6

I know of only one MMO that doesn't feature healers, technically, and that's Guild Wars 2, and that's only because the majority of the classes can function as healers (particularly the casters), meaning if you really want to play a healer, equip a water weapon and go have fun keeping people alive. They're even nice enough to give you a couple of damage spells so you can contribute during those moments when no one needs a heal.

Every other MMO I can think of has a healer class. AoC, you mentioned BS and Temp as healers? My main was a healer, last I checked he was a PoM. My heals were plenty loved and adored when I was playing, which admittedly was a long time ago (and so your problem may just be the lack of community in that game these days). So, I'm not really sure where you're coming from.

As I've said before, I always play the healer, which is why I feel I can speak up as much or more about the change in healers in MMOs. I remember being a Priest in Ragnarok Online, and the only way I could contribute to a fight was by slapping things with my staff or using Mag E, and that only worked on undead enemies. Yes, healing is fun, but in every game there are times when your team just doesn't need you that much, particularly when they're mowing down all those weak enemies on the way to the big boss. There's no good reason why you shouldn't enjoy having some skills to contribute during those battles as well, even if they're not that powerful compared to the 'mage' of the group, except that you're lazy.

As for Solo content, there's a reason for this. In games where healers are necessary just for everyday grinding, that gave healers the ability to solo. That meant everyone else was shit out of luck. All the healers were off doing their own thing and there weren't enough to help everyone else level. This meant groups and groups of people would stagnate. You think this is fair? Take a game like Rappelz, where everyone can solo very well but no one can group a dungeon without a healer (especially if you're 3-4 man'ing it, and by healer I'm including healing pets) unless they've dropped loads of money in the item mall. I'd spend DAYS on my alts shouting for a healer for my group and not get any luck, but I could get a group whenever I wanted on my healer. That's great, but sometimes I want to dps, and I can't, because there's a shortage of healers and the only ones in the game already either A) team with their static group or B) team with their guild members only (because yanno, all PUGs in the history of EVER ended in utter failure /sarcasm).

This is what you want to return to? You don't think that's just the slightest bit selfish that you want to hinder the fun and progress of everyone else just so you can feel a little more desired?

"Forums aren't for intelligent discussion; they're for blow-hards with unwavering opinions."

  Unlight

Novice Member

Joined: 12/10/08
Posts: 2586

11/25/10 11:18:59 AM#7

It was always a nice ego stroke when playing a healer.  You're often thanked specifically after a run, you're the center of attention and always protected in that your comrades will drop everything if you get into any kind of trouble, and you're always sought after by pretty much every group.  But playing the game by fixating on health bars kind of sucks.  I'm not really going to miss it all that much when I start playing GW2 and can actually watch the encounters unfold instead of seeing them as a series of increasing and decreasing health displays.  I won't miss the healer prima donnas either.  There are many of them who take their special role a bit too seriously.

  Elikal

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 2/09/06
Posts: 8067

“No path is darker then when your eyes are shut.” -Flemeth

 
OP  11/25/10 11:20:14 AM#8
Originally posted by gaeanprayer

I know of only one MMO that doesn't feature healers, technically, and that's Guild Wars 2, and that's only because the majority of the classes can function as healers (particularly the casters), meaning if you really want to play a healer, equip a water weapon and go have fun keeping people alive. They're even nice enough to give you a couple of damage spells so you can contribute during those moments when no one needs a heal.

Every other MMO I can think of has a healer class. AoC, you mentioned BS and Temp as healers? My main was a healer, last I checked he was a PoM. My heals were plenty loved and adored when I was playing, which admittedly was a long time ago (and so your problem may just be the lack of community in that game these days). So, I'm not really sure where you're coming from.

As I've said before, I always play the healer, which is why I feel I can speak up as much or more about the change in healers in MMOs. I remember being a Priest in Ragnarok Online, and the only way I could contribute to a fight was by slapping things with my staff or using Mag E, and that only worked on undead enemies. Yes, healing is fun, but in every game there are times when your team just doesn't need you that much, particularly when they're mowing down all those weak enemies on the way to the big boss. There's no good reason why you shouldn't enjoy having some skills to contribute during those battles as well, even if they're not that powerful compared to the 'mage' of the group, except that you're lazy.

As for Solo content, there's a reason for this. In games where healers are necessary just for everyday grinding, that gave healers the ability to solo. That meant everyone else was shit out of luck. All the healers were off doing their own thing and there weren't enough to help everyone else level. This meant groups and groups of people would stagnate. You think this is fair? Take a game like Rappelz, where everyone can solo very well but no one can group a dungeon without a healer (especially if you're 3-4 man'ing it, and by healer I'm including healing pets) unless they've dropped loads of money in the item mall. I'd spend DAYS on my alts shouting for a healer for my group and not get any luck, but I could get a group whenever I wanted on my healer. That's great, but sometimes I want to dps, and I can't, because there's a shortage of healers and the only ones in the game already either A) team with their static group or B) team with their guild members only (because yanno, all PUGs in the history of EVER ended in utter failure /sarcasm).

This is what you want to return to? You don't think that's just the slightest bit selfish that you want to hinder the fun and progress of everyone else just so you can feel a little more desired?

Truth be told, the dmg output of those old time healers was so low, it was a CHORE to solo. I avoided it whenever possible.

Having real old time healers (just like CCers) was a part of a MMO system were people actually played together, not were lost in soloers hell.

A forum is a place where people can discuss about different opinions. So what I don't get is, how people react offended when they come to a forum and then find... well different opinions. If a different opinion offends you, what are you even doing here?

  Lentech

Novice Member

Joined: 5/21/08
Posts: 125

11/25/10 11:23:31 AM#9

I was exlusively a healer for quite some time, healing in EQ was very challenging.. thats why i enjoyed it... one wrong heal and your LOADING....PLEASE WAIT..

 

But like you say, devs. are making healers obsolete... EQ now has Mercenary's....  totaly forgeting about the Boxing epidemic.. theres no room for a healer anymore, because A. they either have a healer merc, or B. they are boxing a healer. 

I Healed as a Priest in wow, did quite a few raids... and it got quite tiresome...  for instance, purely an example... was doing a grull raid back in BC... and a huntard Auto-ran right into grull, as she screamed... zomg my pillow hit my keyboard, hurp derp.. after the raid wiped, i was screamed at for not being ready and healing too my 100% potential...   i was like Whaaaaaaa? we were about 5-10 minutes away from pulling, we hadnt drank our pots.. or refreshed our buffs...or even rezd the ones who fell in the previous fight... yet it was the healers fault for the huntard wiping the raid... That kind of logic really pushed me away from healing..

 

I ended up putting my priest on the back burner, and re-rolled a prot pally... but essentially, retarded dps, lack of Decent healers.. pushed me away from tanking, i do recall tanking that naxramass raid, and the one after that... it just got really Tiresome... i enjoyed tanking ALOT... but when it gets down too the nitty gritty, it seemed people ALWAYS shit-talk the tanks for not being EXACTLY as the wowelitehomos builds or numbers... Its like, dude if you wanna take over with your Rogue and tank.. be my guest, but untill than stfu..

Alas the final straw in my healing/tanking days, was the DPS meters.... god i hated the folks who merely stared at their numbers, not even paying attention too the encounter... Dude i threw 6k dps that fight... yea but you died in about 3 seconds because you were to busy staring at your dps meter instead of moving out of the fire..

in before TL:DR

 

  Sovrath

Elite Member

Joined: 1/06/05
Posts: 17373

11/25/10 11:32:34 AM#10

I think the issues with healers are two fold.

People waiting around to play because they need to find a healer and the healer game being exactly what was said above, a game of whack-a-mole.

The only time I ever saw a healer that I thougth was cool was in Guild Wars where a healer could have holy magic that could harm.

I really like the idea of the healer in LOTRO as a minstrel that raises morale. Part of me thinks that the minstrel should always have the lute out and the entire game play should be a sort of song mini-game but that would probably not be for everyone.

I also wonder if it would be possible to have a healer that healed by their very nature of being in a party. So, in essence they are a holy warrior that can ocassionally throw out a big heal but who "heals" by being in the party which essentially applies a small continuous healing buff.

this way they could concentrate on fighting but the health of party members would continously tick upwards, maybe at variable rates. And then they can cast some sort of large heal.

Conversely I think it would be cool to have something like a necromancer that healed by doing damage. As they do damage they can bank certain points that can be used for a heal. Wahammer might have somehting like this come to think of it. Or, perhaps every bit of damage they do gets transferred to the party.

  Papadam

Novice Member

Joined: 12/09/07
Posts: 2127

11/25/10 11:42:29 AM#11

Have you tried playing a cleric in DDO? It's the most fun I have had as a healer and is different from other MMOs since you don't regen spell points so it becomes more of a game of resource managment.

If WoW = The Beatles
and WAR = Led Zeppelin
Then LotrO = Pink Floyd

  User Deleted
11/25/10 11:49:01 AM#12

I usually give credit to healers not because they're godly players but because they're there so everyone else can have a blast. It's like taking one for the team to stare at health bars couple hours. ;)

I always hear the words of Paul Barnett when it comes to re-inventing healing in MMOs. During one of his coke-boosted hype preaching podcasts he promised there'd be no such thing as "heal heal heal" classes in WAR. What they ended up with were a basic healbot and two types of "hybrids" that still heal very much traditionally when you get past the fluff.

And lastly, the cool of healers hasn't worn off. Good healers are always greatly appreciated. But I'm also concerned about this solo thinking that rules almost every MMO nowadays. Soon people only get together ingame to brag what phat loot they received from their latest solo dungeon run.

  rojoArcueid

Elite Member

Joined: 8/13/09
Posts: 5693

"It is double pleasure to deceive the deceiver". - Niccolo Machiavelli

11/25/10 11:55:37 AM#13
Originally posted by Elikal
Originally posted by rojo6934

healers nowadays are not capable of hardcore healing.... devs wanna make us all suffer with crappy  1/4 heals, i never play healers, i rather summoners or scout(with pets) or just warriors, so i can solo peacefully with potions

You and everybody else, alas. :(

no :( that is true huh

  Gravarg

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 8/24/06
Posts: 3179

11/25/10 11:57:04 AM#14

I've always played the role of the healer/buffer class, and it's sad to see all the new MMOs get away from healers.  They only time you need a healer now is in some dungeons and most raids.  Take lotro for instance, almost everything upto 40ish can be soloed, or done without a minstrel/RK.  Once you get to Angmar people start asking for a healer, except for GB, GA runs.  The only time you need healers are for endgame in today's MMOs, and sometimes not even then.  AoC had a pretty decent dungeon system that healers were required.  Lotro also had a decent system, but almost all the classes in lotro can take at least 3-4 hits before death, except on bosses.  This made healing rather easy, I miss the days of missing one heal and everyone died, but had to keep thier mouth quiet less you leave and the entire raid was stopped dead in it's tracks...THE POWAH! hehe

  Spasticolon

Novice Member

Joined: 6/24/09
Posts: 182

11/25/10 7:50:45 PM#15
Originally posted by Gravarg

I've always played the role of the healer/buffer class, and it's sad to see all the new MMOs get away from healers.  They only time you need a healer now is in some dungeons and most raids.  Take lotro for instance, almost everything upto 40ish can be soloed, or done without a minstrel/RK.  Once you get to Angmar people start asking for a healer, except for GB, GA runs.  The only time you need healers are for endgame in today's MMOs, and sometimes not even then.  AoC had a pretty decent dungeon system that healers were required.  Lotro also had a decent system, but almost all the classes in lotro can take at least 3-4 hits before death, except on bosses.  This made healing rather easy, I miss the days of missing one heal and everyone died, but had to keep thier mouth quiet less you leave and the entire raid was stopped dead in it's tracks...THE POWAH! hehe

This is what I fear for the healing class. By making the game solo friendly to "endgame" not many people manage to really learn their class roles through levelling, and appear as eBay's. Yes, you can run dungeons and such on your way up, but when a game is offering you the chance to just go about your merry way solo and level, you dont run those dungeons often, and interact with others less so. For a healer, learning the nuances of healing large groups, or even one group whilst on the way up is a godsend, being able to just solo through content, when you get to max level store your DPS gear and get out the healing gear then try to muddle your way through will get people dead, and give you an awful name.

Healers need to learn how to heal when in groups, in many different groups of players with differing skill levels, and in all kinds of situations. For PvE, yes, you do tend to focus on Health bars alot more than situational awareness, in PvP you have to keep an eye on everything, which is a real stress inducing time.

I liked healing, and I liked tanking, however the mindset of some players and arrogance, ego and sense of entitlement that some people would display has turned me off of MMO gaming for now. I wasnt a primadonna healer, I would laugh if I died, but be very upset if someone under my care died. I would be a pain in the arse to my tank if I knew him well enough to handle my threat, and try to push for more threat.

Healers need to practice in groups whilst levelling, if the current trend of solo content until endgame is continued, then games should offer a premium service where you can pay and extra $X to access 'Endgame' and skip the levelling crap.

  Adamantine

Hard Core Member

Joined: 1/07/08
Posts: 3345

War is not the ultima ratio, but the ultima irratio - Willy Brandt

11/26/10 2:05:38 AM#16

We got spoiled - spoiled, I say ! - from Vanguard.

After that, I kinda lost the motivation to play games where healers are just healers and cant do anything else.

And healers vanishing from games doesnt improve that situation at all. I suck as damage dealer.

  Wolfy2449

Novice Member

Joined: 3/22/10
Posts: 419

11/26/10 2:18:01 AM#17

short answer- Its better not to depend on anyone because he can simply screw you up because of HIS mistakes

Plus i am pretty sure most people in games are more satisfied when they do damage and kill something instead of trying to help teammates

Woof!

  UsualSuspect

Hard Core Member

Joined: 11/01/04
Posts: 1223

11/26/10 2:19:18 AM#18

The games are getting easier, healing is going out the window due to the need to pull in the console kiddies. FPS games used to be difficult, then they threw out healthpacks and healing points and replaced it with "Duck and your health will come back.". Do you expect MMO's to get any different treatment? Guild Wars 2 is going that way already, having no healing class whatsoever, it's not long until all games are mindless bash-a-thons. I fear the day.

  Teala

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 6/16/04
Posts: 7436

"Really officer, they're herbs."

11/26/10 2:33:58 AM#19

Best time I ever had playing a healer in any MMORPG was in DAoC on my Cleric.   She was awesome.   I miss playing her.   She could heal, buff, and fight when needed.   My Priest in WoW I love to play, but she has no where near the utility my Cleric in DAoC had and is religated to just basically healing. 

It was funny, tody in WoW I was playing my tank running chain heroics to get rep for the Cartel and the healer that I picked up off of Spire loved me.    She asked if I would move to her server and join her guild.   I kept aggro like a super magnet.   I play a DK Blood tank so I can heal myself.   Because I hold aggro so well she didn't have to heal the others except in times from AOEs and that meant just hitting her CoF.   Most of the time she was just DPS'ing and loving it.   ::sigh::  

This is all good and well, for ICC heroics...but I have experienced Cata dungeons and healers are going to be needed more than ever and we suck post Cataclsym.    People are going to hate pure healers.   Blizzard gutted our class and when players find out just how bad our heals have become post Cataclysm...the bitching and moaning on the boards will reach levels unseen in WoW before because we healers will not be able to heal the stupid.   Yes I said stupid.    No amount of wishing will ever get people to play their characters properly again.   DPS will pull - screw the tank.   Nobody will use skills they have to stop taking aggro(this is post Cataclsym) like feign death and fade...they do not use them now - why should they start.   Instead they'll whine to Blizzard that the game is to hard now and Blizzard will nerf everything.   Mark my words...by spring all new dungeons will be as easy as if not easier than current ICC randoms.

  Baffa

Novice Member

Joined: 8/10/04
Posts: 38

11/26/10 2:40:57 AM#20

I honestly have no idea why they tend to move away from healer classes. I know quite a few people who really enjoy being just a healer and not some kind of a dps/tank/heal hybrid.

MMO's tend to get more boring each day for all these idiotic changes.

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