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The Pub at MMORPG.COM  » The life of the Healer

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  Arclan

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 1/29/07
Posts: 1443

"Ideas are worthless. The only currency that holds any weight is the ability and drive to execute."

 
OP  9/05/13 7:13:36 PM#1

A rumor is going around that the Healer class is boring; and that everyone else gets the 'fun.' Well let me disagree. My secondary EQ character was a Cleric, and I spent thousands of hours playing him and loved every minute of it.


1. You get respect from everyone, and appreciation from your group mates


2. You help push the group into more dangerous and lucrative encounters.


3. You employ constant problem solving and decision making; deciding who to heal, when, and for how much. All the while trying to avoid aggro and, if you got it, keeping yourself alive.


4. The consequences of your decisions are high; literally holding the power of life and death.


Although I mention problem solving/decision making third, it is THE reason I loved being a healer.

Luckily, i don't need you to like me to enjoy video games. -nariusseldon.
In F2P I think it's more a case of the game's trying to play the player's. -laserit
video game company layoffs are twice the national average.

  Lissyl

Apprentice Member

Joined: 4/12/12
Posts: 265

Why yes, I DO like healing and the Trinity!

9/05/13 7:20:06 PM#2
Seems to be a love-it-or-hate-it with very little in-between.  Personally, I love it.  I always feel useful without having to justify my position (because its self-evident) and without the teen macho epeen contest of dps meters.
  naZchoco

Novice Member

Joined: 8/02/12
Posts: 83

9/05/13 7:20:25 PM#3

I've been healing since 99' as a Cleric myself. 

 

I love the respect I get from it. 

I love how attentive we have to be on certain fights. Aggro control, status ailment curing, heals, while all the same doing the usual waltz around red rings and AoEs like everyone else. 

I think it's the hardest of the classes and I think it's the most fun.

The only problem I have with it is we usually get the shaft in terms of looks. Except cleric - at least it was plate wearing :D

  Utinni

Novice Member

Joined: 7/13/13
Posts: 358

9/05/13 7:25:37 PM#4

I kept hearing this in EQN dev panels. A notion that 1 person tanks 1 person heals and everyone else gets to have fun. Thats paraphrasing but its close to what actually came out of the devs mouth. The proliferation of everyone being a DPS class is just to garner more of the FPS, RTS, and MOBA crowd. Hell go play a ranked game in league and see how people act like its the plague to do support. Ironic that when pro players are asked what the hardest position is they all say support.

Non-MMO players only want to DPS. Recount is all that matters now.

  AlBQuirky

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 1/24/05
Posts: 3392

Tomorrow's just a future yesterday...

9/05/13 7:38:02 PM#5


Originally posted by Arclan
A rumor is going around that the Healer class is boring; and that everyone else gets the 'fun.' Well let me disagree. My secondary EQ character was a Cleric, and I spent thousands of hours playing him and loved every minute of it.

1. You get respect from everyone, and appreciation from your group mates

2. You help push the group into more dangerous and lucrative encounters.

3. You employ constant problem solving and decision making; deciding who to heal, when, and for how much. All the while trying to avoid aggro and, if you got it, keeping yourself alive.

4. The consequences of your decisions are high; literally holding the power of life and death.

Although I mention problem solving/decision making third, it is THE reason I loved being a healer.



#1 I am unsure about for today's players. In the "old days" respect and courtesy were much more commonplace.

I have always enjoyed being a healer. Random run-by healing and buffing is my favorite activity :)

One bone of contention I have always had is the division of XP in some MMOs. I have never been clear on how healing equates to killing MOBs. Most of the time, I do not even tag the opponent.

- Al

Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
- FARGIN_WAR

  WW4BW

Novice Member

Joined: 12/03/06
Posts: 492

9/05/13 7:56:44 PM#6

  There are two problems with healer classes.. One is described in this article:  http://www.rtsguru.com/game/435/article/3433/Morello-Talks-Soraka-and-Healer-Classes.html

  The other problem is the power of the class to dictate to the group. If the healer doesnt want someone in the group they arent getting in. Personally, I dont see that as a problem, but as a solution to weed out dead weight and other undesireables from the game.

  I've played healing classes in most of the games I have played. And I have always enjoyed it when I did. Even if I sometimes resented not being able to play one of my other characters due to my healer being in higher demand :P

  WW4BW

Novice Member

Joined: 12/03/06
Posts: 492

9/05/13 8:12:04 PM#7
Originally posted by Utinni

I kept hearing this in EQN dev panels. A notion that 1 person tanks 1 person heals and everyone else gets to have fun. Thats paraphrasing but its close to what actually came out of the devs mouth. The proliferation of everyone being a DPS class is just to garner more of the FPS, RTS, and MOBA crowd. Hell go play a ranked game in league and see how people act like its the plague to do support. Ironic that when pro players are asked what the hardest position is they all say support.

Non-MMO players only want to DPS. Recount is all that matters now.

  In my experience support is safe role to start out with if you are new to MOBAs. It is fairly easy to coast through a few games while you learn the ropes. And there is no presure to have 300+ CS or even a positive KDA ratio (even if a good support player will often have the best KDA since they are rarely the focus of the enemy team).

  To be a good support though, you have to know how to play pretty much every other role so you can anticipate how to best support them. Supports also set up many of the plays and have to be clever about when to go ward and they often have to keep track of the whole enemy team for their team mates. So it is extremely hard to master.. Most other roles just need to mind their own business.

  Arclan

Spotlight Poster

Joined: 1/29/07
Posts: 1443

"Ideas are worthless. The only currency that holds any weight is the ability and drive to execute."

 
OP  9/06/13 2:28:38 PM#8


Originally posted by WW4BW
  There are two problems with healer classes.. One is described in this article:  http://www.rtsguru.com/game/435/article/3433/Morello-Talks-Soraka-and-Healer-Classes.html

  The other problem is the power of the class to dictate to the group. If the healer doesnt want someone in the group they arent getting in. Personally, I dont see that as a problem, but as a solution to weed out dead weight and other undesireables from the game.

  I've played healing classes in most of the games I have played. And I have always enjoyed it when I did. Even if I sometimes resented not being able to play one of my other characters due to my healer being in higher demand :P


This is another positive, I suppose. Healers hold a certain amount of power in the group. I've never seen that be abused as far as I can tell, though; whether on my Cleric alt or Paladin main.

Luckily, i don't need you to like me to enjoy video games. -nariusseldon.
In F2P I think it's more a case of the game's trying to play the player's. -laserit
video game company layoffs are twice the national average.

  Morrok

Novice Member

Joined: 12/26/08
Posts: 132

9/06/13 5:01:01 PM#9

http://www.thenoobcomic.com/index.php?pos=193

That is what comes to my mind...


I play EQ too (only off and on these days), and have all types of healer-chars.
While i even have two CLRs, so i can have one around at any time, i rarely play him as a primary.
I think i am a fairly good cleric too, if i have to...
But normally, he's simply the box to my my WAR since i have come to DIStrust most player-CLRs, especially most in the top-raid-guilds.
(these, i found, rely on their gear too much to the point where they slack far too much, sometimes even on raids - and get away with it, go figure!)

And i guess that the cleric was "so fun to play" is the reason why they introduced the rampart-buff and changed the CLR from the long-cast but massive (at it's time) CH to the different lines of heals, coupled with more... viability for the other spells a cleric has, that allow him to heal less and hav efun more.
Or why the J5 healer merc is probably the most hired+used one...

I think there's a reason why healers, especially clerics, are basically always "open" in ANY raiding guild!


When it comes to problem-solving i have come to respect a lot of shamans (vs. only a select few clerics) that use their mana in a much more versatile way...

  5Luck

Apprentice Member

Joined: 1/23/10
Posts: 172

9/06/13 5:57:23 PM#10

To me there is a line between healing and suport. While I do like healing I am a fan of the true suport role even more. It is very hard to define as it incorperates game lore and mythology as welll as buffs debffs crowd control and mezing. Not to mention off heals!

 

If you want more healer love make it a duel spec class with real meaningfull suport. Think archon or bard from rift. Some of those types of ideas coupled with the nessesity of healing!

  scarlettx

Novice Member

Joined: 9/14/13
Posts: 30

9/14/13 4:07:33 AM#11

Loved reading this thread; so fascinating from the stand-point of someone who chose to play a Shadow Priest in WoW and was constantly being asked if I could re-spec for healing. After reading all these posts, I'm regretting that I never bothered to give it a go!

 

The "fun factor" is something I always wondered about with healers. It seemed so stressful to worry about keeping everyone buffed and healthy, then to deal with the fallout if someone died (especially in the midst of wildly immature and/or disrespectful PUGs). While the healer was certainly someone that should have commanded massive appreciation, it often felt like people (read: DPS fiends) were very dismissive of what healers brought to the table.

 

Which MMOs have been the most fun for y'all to play healers in?

  Po_gg

Elite Member

Joined: 5/12/10
Posts: 2148

9/14/13 4:27:09 AM#12
Originally posted by scarlettx

Which MMOs have been the most fun for y'all to play healers in?

AoC, Bear shaman. Got the advantages of the combo system's fun factor (opposed to ToS or PoM), but still capable of healing through instances and being useful on the side.

And I'd disagree with OP's "A rumor is going around that the Healer class is boring", I've always found dps boring. Healing, tank/off-tank, or controlling the fight is much more fun. But if you ask "the most fun", then it's AoC. TSW's fist/blood is maybe the second.

  Dibdabs

Advanced Member

Joined: 5/29/08
Posts: 2485

9/14/13 7:49:40 AM#13
Originally posted by Arclan

1. You get respect from everyone, and appreciation from your group mates

Back in the day maybe, but not now.  Every useless Tank in the world who can't handle pulls uses the Healer as a whipping boy for his failure.  I gave up playing healers in a group when I stopped playing EQ1. 

  Neo_Viper

Novice Member

Joined: 5/10/13
Posts: 624

If I agreed with you we'd both be wrong.

9/14/13 8:58:16 AM#14

Tank has always been the role requiring the most skill and game knowledge. Healers are still mostly about button mashing. A way overrated role in my opinion.

A mediocre healer will get you through the dungeon if the tank is good. A mediocre tank will make your experience a pain, even if the healer is good, because the tank's job isn't about being healed but about controlling the whole fights in a trinity system.

My computer is better than yours.

  Apraxis

Advanced Member

Joined: 9/28/05
Posts: 1509

9/14/13 9:58:08 AM#15

The real problem of the Healer class is, that it is a must have class for any group setup/encounter.

When you do have 10-20 or more classes, and a group size of 5-8, and 2-4 classes out of those classes are must have all other classes will have a bad time. With other words your balance is rigged.

There are two solutions for that problem:

- either reduce your amounts of classes, so that every single class is must have for a group encounter. That would basicly come down to 3-4 classes.

- eliminate any "must have" class.. either to get rid of that class entirely or change your group encounters, so that no single class is better or is must have then any other class.

This problem is not only because of the holy trinity and pve, it happend in pvp as well. Little example.

In old DAoC RvR you got a few must have clas any group really required:

- Healer.. even more you usually required 2 of them. Healing + Buffs

- CC, Mezz.. it was just a little bit imba in DAoC RvR and therefore absolutely must have

- Speed. In DAoC there was a speed group buff, and only one class from every realm got that one.. and for pvp movement speed was absolutely basic need.

With that 4 places in any pvp group where alreaday pre set, and then you could fill those other 4 places (group consisted of 8 players) could be filled from the other 15 classes. And usually the group was either a caster group, so the other 4 places was resembled with 4 Dps Caster, or it was a melee group and you used 4 Dps melees.

Ok.. depending on your setup some other supporter could be useful, so you sometimes mixed those 4 remaining places with dps and 1-2 additional supporter (endu buff, mana buff, resi debuff, interuption or anything like that)

 

And now to all healers.. what do you like more? A MMO with healers, but only 3-4 classes, or a MMO with a lot of different abilities and roles and a lot more classes, but not one single "must have" class.. and with that only a somewhat gimped healer? At least that is the question any serious designer have to answer.. because they don't design a game for a single person, or a single flavor, they try to design a game for different flavours and a lot of different potential players.

Edit: Another problem with healer especially is the ability to play as single player vs. ability to play with group balance. But that is a fixable problem, without changeing everything.. the above is somewhat more difficult

  DanitaKusor

Advanced Member

Joined: 6/17/09
Posts: 550

9/14/13 10:35:17 AM#16
Originally posted by Po_gg
Originally posted by scarlettx

Which MMOs have been the most fun for y'all to play healers in?

AoC, Bear shaman. Got the advantages of the combo system's fun factor (opposed to ToS or PoM), but still capable of healing through instances and being useful on the side.

I find my ToS quite fun to play.  It can be edge of the seat close to death play out in some of the harder zone, but still fun and great dps while still healing.

The Enlightened take things Lightly

  Psistorm

Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/13/13
Posts: 36

9/14/13 10:46:28 AM#17

Personally I feel that healers are probably the hardest class to play, and in many ways also the least rewarding. You get to keep everyone alive, watching 5 targets on top of needing to know when the fight needs special attention on top of doing the mechanics, and if you slip up you generally get shouted at. You pretty much have to have healed a dungeon in order to be allowed to heal a dungeon, so to say. Or at least have read up on every encounter.

Meanwhile tanks need the same kind of pre-knowledge, it almost feels as if healers/tanks aren't allowed to learn anymore in todays MMO society, people expect them to know everything up front already. They need to be more geared usually, though they don't have to do a ton of work over dps. They often are subject to different mechanics, but most games seem to give them gratuitous threat building abilities so that threat isn't really an issue.

Meanwhile DPS can die all they like and blame others in some games, only need to do the waltz whilst spamming their rotation as fast as they can, because the tank is expected to keep aggro and stay up, and the healer is expected to smooth over any screwups the group does.

 

Granted this is my personal, perhaps slightly jaded opinion, but in todays "don't talk, just kill stuff already" LFG experience, this seems to be what it boils down to. Which is probably why I a) really should find me a nice guild on any upcoming MMOs I play and b) will probably pick up tanking. I tried healing once and it really is a bit too much for my taste, but tanking I tried out and I like the taste of it.

 

So what can games do to make it more fun? Imho break up the trinity, and try to make every role responsible again. And re-introduce CC and support as a major player. Make it so that DPS classes aren't pure DPS, but instead have a good helping of temporary buffs, small heals and such at their disposal, as well as some CC. Make fights revolve around those concepts, make the party turn into a scenario where people help each other, rather two people carrying three others to an extent.

  Po_gg

Elite Member

Joined: 5/12/10
Posts: 2148

9/14/13 10:47:07 AM#18
Originally posted by Apraxis

The real problem of the Healer class is, that it is a must have class for any group setup/encounter.

.....

There are two solutions for that problem:

- either reduce your amounts of classes, so that every single class is must have for a group encounter. That would basicly come down to 3-4 classes.

- eliminate any "must have" class.. either to get rid of that class entirely or change your group encounters, so that no single class is better or is must have then any other class.

Not a must have class, a must have role - quite a difference. In most mmo's (except GW2's "everyone's an island", tank'n'spank fest) encounters are designed around the pen'n'paper-ish mechanism, which some call the (Holy) Trinity. They need someone bulky enough to hold off the crowd, need damage dealers, need support (either with heals, debuffs, controls, etc.)

 

Therefore there are many "solutions" besides eliminating the must have roles, like

-having multiple classes for each role to ensure there are enough players for each one. AoC has 3 healers (plus DT :) ok, just kidding), LotRO has 2, plus captains as decent backup healers (out of 9 classes) - in both cases ~1/3 of the classes can fill the healer role. Btw same with tanks, AoC has 3 (+1/2), LotRO has 2 plus champs.

-designing the layouts with making every class a "must have" one, like AoC's 24man raids (2 from all the 12 classes)

-giving the players the option to fill every role they want, like TSW or STO

  Sk1ppeR

Advanced Member

Joined: 4/29/12
Posts: 534

9/14/13 10:51:48 AM#19
Originally posted by Arclan

A rumor is going around that the Healer class is boring; and that everyone else gets the 'fun.' Well let me disagree. My secondary EQ character was a Cleric, and I spent thousands of hours playing him and loved every minute of it.


1. You get respect from everyone, and appreciation from your group mates


2. You help push the group into more dangerous and lucrative encounters.


3. You employ constant problem solving and decision making; deciding who to heal, when, and for how much. All the while trying to avoid aggro and, if you got it, keeping yourself alive.


4. The consequences of your decisions are high; literally holding the power of life and death.


Although I mention problem solving/decision making third, it is THE reason I loved being a healer.

1. It's fake respect. 

2. Bad game design

3. It's not really so hard to heal the tank since they are doing most of the job.

4. Not really after you figure out how to sustain your mana or whatever limits your heals

 

P.S: Played a friend's healer character in Lineage 2 for 2 hours. My party called me the best healer they've seem. I was bored to hell. Frankly, a tank is a lot more challenging

 

P.P.S: Just remembered L2 has more than 1 healer types. I was playing a Cardinal/Bishop

  Po_gg

Elite Member

Joined: 5/12/10
Posts: 2148

9/14/13 11:05:14 AM#20
Originally posted by DanitaKusor
Originally posted by Po_gg
Originally posted by scarlettx

Which MMOs have been the most fun for y'all to play healers in?

AoC, Bear shaman. Got the advantages of the combo system's fun factor (opposed to ToS or PoM), but still capable of healing through instances and being useful on the side.

I find my ToS quite fun to play.  It can be edge of the seat close to death play out in some of the harder zone, but still fun and great dps while still healing.

Sorry, I didn't want to belittle ToS :) just ment that ToS is very much like every other healer in other games gameplay-wise. True, it has a nice mechanic, dishing out awesome dps while healing at the same time (and Life of Set for free), but to be honest, LotRO's Runekeeper does it in a much more fun way with the attunement system. I mean the nuker / dps/ heal thingy.

And no such thing for near death experience for ToS, that's what Aftershock is for :)

 

Edit: khm.... ok I admit it was a long time when I last played my ToS... just logged in to check the details and to my (after)shock (lol), the feat is gone. There's however Set's Life Sparks instead, which is the same, if you die, that old Worm will rez you.

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