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How to fix sorcs without screwing up precious metrics: make Dark Heal instant.


AdrianDmitruk

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Before I hear the cries of L2P, let me say this: I have a WH geared, valor 84 sorcerer. When 1.2 patch notes were announced (and it became obvious bioware wouldn't listen to test server feedback saying the changes were a very, very bad idea), I started leveling an operative healer. It's the same player behind both, so player skill is constant and controlled.

 

The operative dinged 50 about four days ago. The recruit-geared operative was very much the equal of the wh-geared sorcerer in effectiveness. Said operative also broke said sorcerer's single-wz healing record by almost 200k only 3 days out of dinging 50, still in half recruit gear (in civil war, not voidstar).

 

Why? Operative, simply put, has instant heals. And they're not on 17-second cooldowns like the bubble or 9 seconds for the sorc's (weak) hot. The operative can actually kite and keep himself up at the same time, and in fact I specced him into doing this, taking the 15% movement speed bonus from the concealment tree. A sorc has to stand there and cast, and Force help him if he gets rooted while trying to sprint away. If the same player gets such different performance out of two classes, it's clearly the class balance that's broken, not player skill.

 

Operatives can literally rely on instant heals 80-90% of the time in a wz; I know I do. The pubs on my server, Force bless them, are actually good at interrupting, so I don't allow them the chance, now that I have the choice. It's pretty hilarious watching the enemy interrupt diagnostic scan simply because I haven't allowed them the chance to interrupt anything in two or three minutes and they're that desperate to shut me down. Good ops can probably instant heal 100% of the time. Mercs at least have their interrupt-immunity cd, even though they got nerfed into the ground along with sorcs. Sorcs have...?

 

They need at least a weak instant heal; it would help buy them time to **** after a single hit popped their bubble. You know, actually allow them to last long enough to kite. IMO Dark Heal is the best candidate--it's weak, it's expensive, and it can't be spammed without the sorc quickly going oof; it was intended to be the quick emergency heal. Its cast is the same as gcd. Making it instant shouldn't change bioware's precious pve metrics at all; throughput wouldn't change, or if it does due to difference with the alacrity stat not affecting gcd, the difference shouldn't be significant. Literally the only reason not to would be the dps qq that they would no longer be completely guaranteed a sorcerer shutdown and free kill.

 

It would, however, buy that sorc those precious couple seconds to get behind a different pillar, since dps found him at the old one. Especially if that sorc had the misfortune of getting rooted. It'd be a minor change that might actually make sorc healing viable in pvp again (against competent opponents, not scrubs that need to l2interrupt).

 

Bioware, I'd love to bring my sorc out of retirement.

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Something simple like that could work... how about a more involved fix of some kind.

 

Affliction being friendly castable for a heal perhaps ? (this way DPS sorc don't get a massive boost of an instant heal... but could get an instant cast minor hot heal).

 

Then add a talent 3/4 up the heal tree that would say grant instant cast dark heal on an Affliction heal crit.

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If you broke your sages healing record with just instants the opposing team isn't doing enough damage Or focus firing. You cannot keep up a target being focused with your rolling hots the 31 talent and the spam heal under 30%.

 

Now as to not derail your thread- I dont agree with your post with instant 1.5 cast quick heal if it's proc, based off the hot first and replace auto crit with instant.

 

I would rather they bring back 1.2 changes and allow a 1.5 second cast on the long cast big heal

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Sage/sorc healers are awesome, but they do require a little more skill to do well with them.

 

Your suggestion would break game balance making sage/sorc healers overpowered by a mile. You also need to consider the vastly different resource management of sage compared to operatives.

 

TLDR: L2P, sage/sorcs are great.

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I like both the ideas. I agree that the sorcerer needs to be buffed in such a way as to not make him win those 1v1's that he was previously losing just giving him enough of a time-frame to continue doing what he does (be an annoying cc-er) and a very objective based support class.

 

I think though the dark heal instant could get OP if people start using relics and recklessness for healing instead of for DPS. I think the friendly affliction heals bit is way better. I don't know how that would actually be implemented. But it would also encourage Sorcerers to stay with group which is what they are more suited for (other than in Huttball) as they are not the recommended class to hold a node solo. So I think that really is a great idea. Its also not as easy as spamming a instant heal bind so I like the increased difficulty.

 

http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=470790

 

In my thread I argued for a defensive cooldown in the form of ice block. I think that is another option. However, I think I like the friendly affliction heal idea slightly better. Because its sustained survive ability as compared to my suggestion which would be to negate one massive burst.

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To answer Erg's question real quick:

 

Sorc healing record was 640k, and that was in a voidstar. He has however broken 600k in every warzone, including huttball. Like I said, pubs on my server are good at interrupting, and sorc/sage is the class most vulnerable to it.

 

Operative got 831k in a civil war. Granted we had tanks on our team that helped me keep up those under-30% targets, but I also ran with the same tanks before the operative leveled up. After 1.2, I had to run with pocket tanks for obvious reasons enunciated in my post. There was plenty of focus fire to go around; the dps died because I was triaging in favor of the tanks and the other healer so we could maintain a presence and keep them from capping mid (yes, one of those fights). Also note that I will stop to cast KI when I know I can freecast--but on my server, that's not a common occurrence.

 

I hadn't considered how this would affect dps sorcs, since I've never dpsed. :D Dps too easy, I prefer the adrenaline rushes of healing and would have it no other way. I think talenting DH instant high up in the heal tree is a good idea.

 

The affliction idea is a bit confusing to me. It's a dot, no wait you want to make it a heal, it can't be both at the same time, can it?

 

Maybe if instant DH needs a cd change the Force Bending proc to make it instant cast. I (perhaps naively) thought that Force management would be a soft cd because DH is quite expensive for what it puts out.

Edited by AdrianDmitruk
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The affliction idea is a bit confusing to me. It's a dot, no wait you want to make it a heal, it can't be both at the same time, can it?

 

It is a DOT, and I wouldn't suggest they change that... just that the same skill would be a hot if you had a friendly targeted instead of the DOT. Tech wise I think Bio could do this... think Mercs and there healing guns... effect changes on target selection.

 

It would fit lore wise... for Jedi the force that dmgs the evil folk also heals the good folk... and the Dark energy of effliction heals our dark side friends.

 

I just think having a 20-30 point skill that says X becomes Instant cast is a cop out... why not add some complexity we can handle it. It gives us that HOT heal we can keep out on our team as well like the Ops. (which is why they get the big heal numbers I think). Keeping it out keeps your proc up and allows you to spike heal a bit. (like the ops tactical advantage crits that allow them the same)

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It is a DOT, and I wouldn't suggest they change that... just that the same skill would be a hot if you had a friendly targeted instead of the DOT. Tech wise I think Bio could do this... think Mercs and there healing guns... effect changes on target selection.

 

It would fit lore wise... for Jedi the force that dmgs the evil folk also heals the good folk... and the Dark energy of effliction heals our dark side friends.

 

I just think having a 20-30 point skill that says X becomes Instant cast is a cop out... why not add some complexity we can handle it. It gives us that HOT heal we can keep out on our team as well like the Ops. (which is why they get the big heal numbers I think). Keeping it out keeps your proc up and allows you to spike heal a bit. (like the ops tactical advantage crits that allow them the same)

 

OK now that I get what you're saying, I like your idea a bit better than my own :D It's just I've never played merc healer so I wasn't aware of the comparison until you stopped to explain it.

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Coming from both the point of view of a sorc healer (well corruption/madness hybrid right now) and a dedicated healer-hunter (sentinel) I can see both angles fairly well.

 

I think ultimately right now the view metrics-counters are taking is skewed by the sheer output an unchecked sorc healer can dish out. The incidental splash damage absorption of having multiple targets shielded along with Revivification's huge amount of total healing done per cast can make them look very strong on paper.

 

But in the pvp context the biggest deal is that all important 'unchecked' word as they are also the easiest to lock down. The inefficiency of dark heal (healing to both cast time and resource cost ratios) becomes highlighted by the fact that when dps wants to put them under duress they should pretty much never be able to get Dark Infusion or Revivification off really dips into what they can do.

 

I am not certain an flat-out instant dark heal is the answer however. I think instead a helpful angle could be to look into the situational cooldown bracket, chiefly inputting a low tier talent where recklessness gves two charges of insta-cast instead of a near-guaranteed crit.

 

This affords sorc's a defensive cooldown if used for self healing, an ability to have some improved healing capability under duress, an "oh crap" cooldown for pve healing, and if put into a low tier can also help give lightning the situational burst that it feels like it is missing (kind of making a reckless + thundering blast combo on an afflicted target something of a PoM Pyro light).

 

The reason I say mix it into a low tier talent is for those who do not wish to lose the guaranteed crit (say madness spec or lightning storm proc'd insta chain lightning).

 

 

The other alternative I like is making a low output non resource heal. Making affliction dual-purpose DoT on an enemy, HoT on a friendly would play into this. One other stand out thing a commando/merc and a Scoundrel/Op have going for them is a non resource heal (diagnostic scan, hammer shot) that is not very strong but allows you do to something as either a filler, or to be not completely reduced to nothing if out of resource. Having a low power HoT as a non resource heal would play to this well and give a sorc some way to buy a little health while they are attempting to kite outside of resurgence cooldowns.

Edited by paul_preib
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If we are buffing Sorc's mobile healing then the balance needs to be either weakening their AOE healing or further improving the AOE healing of the other two classes. Yes, mobile healing is very valuable in PVP but the Sage also has huge strengths as a healing class and taking one of the assets of another class without giving them some of your unique strength in return sounds unfair.

 

The fact that Sorcs have a huge initial force pool also causes big issues with giving them a powerful instant heal - you'd be able to spam it far more than a Scoundrel can spam equivalently strong heals if you are dying repeatedly.

 

Now, I love Salvation - it's awesome and the combination of that plus bubbles is actually more than enough for me to always want a Seer on my team in both PVP and PVE. In comparison the AOE heals of Scoundrels and Combat Medics are pretty bad and I'd much prefer they fixed those and then also gave both Combat Medics and Sorcerors a useful instant heal rather than just nerfing salvation as the price of your proprosed buff to Sorcerors. Just buffing Sorcs like this without giving similar quality improvements to the others would make Sorcs/Sages clearly the strongest healing class again just like they were until 1.2.

 

TLDR: Both Sorcs and Mercs should get talented, moderate instant heals but only if Mercs and Ops get improved AOE heals (either increase to 8-man or if they stay 4-man they should have roughly double the strength of the Sorc AOE to compensate.)

Edited by Aetou
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I suggested allowing Force Potency (Recklessness) to charge a super-strength "crit" bubble instead of just a cast heal. But your idea isn't bad either. The alternate free HOT idea sounds nice, but would probably screw up how Noble Sac/Consumption is supposed to work.

 

I'm finding Sage healing quite manageable, but that's because I'm always qing with a full-tank bodyguard. Going solo is just a slaughter. Stil, those AOE heals are pretty awesome.

Edited by flem
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I see plenty of warzones where sorcs/sages put up 300k 400k and even 500k with no problem. They are fine, merc healers can still put up good numbers and well op healers are still op healers.
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I see plenty of warzones where sorcs/sages put up 300k 400k and even 500k with no problem. They are fine, merc healers can still put up good numbers and well op healers are still op healers.

 

Those are not good numbers

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When any decently skilled operative healer is consistently putting up over 650k in heals and a Mercenary over 550k then yeah those are not good numbers. Anyway the way to compare two healers in a WZ is not by pure healing numbers look at the damage they received as well. If both classes received around the same amount of damage and the sorcerer still out-healer the operative then I would be impressed. Doesn't happen. Edited by Lanimal
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