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Liberty's Edge

That is a good point Amanda. Truth be told I have played dead once or twice myself. When reduced to negative hp brought back with a few hps. I pre tended to be dead. I sometimes get flak for it. The thing is it's actually a valid and smart tactic. Not brave or heroic but it beats a raise dead any day of the week.

I still maintain that a class that can heal in the right situation should. If it's a lost cause then I concede don't waste the healing. Still being told why would you expect a cleric to heal when both out of game and in game they are the best class to heal. Is like expecting a army generals in to go "why are you all looking at me. I'm not going to lead this army". For better or worse all editions of D&D reinforce certain stereotypes IMO. Want a class to open a lock everyone is going to look at the rogue and so on. No one should be forced to do anything they don't want at the table. Their are diplomatic ways to ask. Simply asking a cleric to heal should not be considered out of line. Expecting them to do it all the time yes. If between levels 1-5 your only asked maybe 3-5 times is not too much.


memorax wrote:


I still maintain that a class that can heal in the right situation should.

The problem here is defining what is the "right" situation. Assuming the standard situation of the cleric player caring for a fellow party member to not die, then it is on cleric player to judge the situation.

Liberty's Edge

@ jiggly

If a player is going to withhold the main class feature. Whose to say he won't do the same to everything else. If they refuse to heal I'm assuming right or wrong that they are going to do the same with everything else. Now if I'm prove wrong then I'm wrong. If in not if sea player is going to be a virtual liner the. I'm going to treat him as one. If the rat of the group has to beg and plead. With the player grumbling every step of the way. Why would the rest of the group not give back a similar treatment. Play the way you want expect it to have both negative and positive consequences. Now if a cleric withholds healing but buffs it's another story. Then I'm willing to share and share alike.

Liberty's Edge

Nicos wrote:


The problem here is defining what is the "right" situation. Assuming the standard situation of the cleric player caring for a fellow party member to not die, then it is on cleric player to judge the situation.

its D&D not rocket science. It's fairly obvious when the need for healing is right and when it's wrong. A player gets a scratch I usually don't bother. He or she takes 30+ damage. Diseased if cursed. You really don't need to be asked IMO. Too often players who go take that kind of hp damage wrongfully assume they can survive the next combat. Chances Are they won't. Sometimes one hAs to be both proactive not just reactive at the table.


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memorax wrote:
Nicos wrote:


The problem here is defining what is the "right" situation. Assuming the standard situation of the cleric player caring for a fellow party member to not die, then it is on cleric player to judge the situation.
its D&D not rocket science. It's fairly obvious when the need for healing is right and when it's wrong. A player gets a scratch I usually don't bother. He or she takes 30+ damage. Diseased if cursed. You really don't need to be asked IMO. Too often players who go take that kind of hp damage wrongfully assume they can survive the next combat. Chances Are they won't. Sometimes one hAs to be both proactive not just reactive at the table.

Still only the cleric player right to judge.

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memorax wrote:
I still maintain that a class that can heal in the right situation should.

I think the main thing folks are wanting you to hear is that "the right situation" is a faaaaar smaller number of events than you probably realize. You yourself cited "fighter is at half HP" as qualifying, and you're wrong.

You are right that "in the right situation" someone who has immediate access to a heal should use it. You (and about a bajillion other people) are wrong to think that "fighter's at half" is such a situation.

That's the takeaway here.

Quote:
Still being told why would you expect a cleric to heal when both out of game and in game they are the best class to heal. Is like expecting a army generals in to go "why are you all looking at me. I'm not going to lead this army".

There's a difference between "the best" and "good". Like I said earlier, a barbarian might be the best at using a club, but it doesn't mean it's worth doing; just like a cleric might be the best at healing, but his healing is still (usually) not worth doing.

Quote:
For better or worse all editions of D&D reinforce certain stereotypes IMO. Want a class to open a lock everyone is going to look at the rogue and so on.

Ironically, an awful lot of gamers suck at determining whether an individual game system actually supports a given trope. The inability of large portions of the gaming community to accurately process the data in front of their faces even if it goes against long-held general beliefs rivals that of even the most mind-boggling religious fundamentalists. Healing is one example, but there are others, such as "rogues need to prioritize charisma for Bluff, because that's what rogues do" (even though rogues are no better than any other class at bluffing). There's plenty more.

The fact that so many people fail to see how limited their own trope-based cognitive abilities are does not mean the folks on the receiving end of it should stop complaining.

Quote:
Simply asking a cleric to heal should not be considered out of line. Expecting them to do it all the time yes. If between levels 1-5 your only asked maybe 3-5 times is not too much.

I'd wager a guess that all of the people you're talking to would LOVE IT if their clerics were asked to heal only about once per level and always "simply asking". It'd be a nice break from the usual experience of people raising their hands and voices and looking at you like you're crazy and making retaliatory threats (i.e., abandon you on the front line, etc) and so forth.

Grand Lodge

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memorax wrote:

@ jiggly

If a player is going to withhold the main class feature.

Healing is not the clerics main class feature. Spells are, of which healing is a subset.

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memorax wrote:

@ jiggly

If a player is going to withhold the main class feature.

If you think the ability to heal is the cleric's main class feature, then you haven't read the cleric class.

At least, not in the last couple of decades.

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memorax wrote:
It's fairly obvious when the need for healing is right and when it's wrong. ... Too often players who go take that kind of hp damage wrongfully assume they can survive the next combat. Chances Are they won't. Sometimes one hAs to be both proactive not just reactive at the table.

Wait, you're talking about healing up between combats? Dude, everyone else has been talking about DURING combat, because between-combat healing is typically handled with wands, not spell slots.

That explains a lot of your posts, though. Perhaps it could explain some things to you about other people's posts as well.


If only there was some way, using wands, between rounds to take care of all the other things that the party is trying to avoid.


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Jiggy wrote:
memorax wrote:

@ jiggly

If a player is going to withhold the main class feature.

If you think the ability to heal is the cleric's main class feature, then you haven't read the cleric class.

At least, not in the last couple of decades.

And those spells he casts can be instantly converted into healing spells, plus channeling, and the number of spells in the list that heal in various ways... I'd say healing easily ties spellcasting as main class feature for the cleric.

Liberty's Edge

Nicos wrote:


Still only the cleric player right to judge.

I'm assuming that the person running the cleric has some common sense. If two characters are hug by a fireball. One goes from 100 hp to 70 the other goes from 60 to 20 with a failed save. One assumes the cleric is going to heal the one that has less hp. Sometimes it is that obvious and it still not that hard to judge IMO.

Grand Lodge

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Bill Dunn wrote:
And those spells he casts can be instantly converted into healing spells, plus channeling, and the number of spells in the list that heal in various ways... I'd say healing easily ties spellcasting as main class feature for the cleric.

It really doesn't. You can just as easily claim that damage ties healing considering negative energy channeling and inflict, or the use of positive channeling and cure to damage undead. And clerics have plenty of buffing and damage spells on the list to counter the number of healing spells.

Liberty's Edge

Even during combat with channel energy at least at low levels it can allow a cleric to heal and be effective in combat. As channeling does not provoke a AOO. At later levels it does not scale well enough. Still effective IMO

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Bill Dunn wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
memorax wrote:

@ jiggly

If a player is going to withhold the main class feature.

If you think the ability to heal is the cleric's main class feature, then you haven't read the cleric class.

At least, not in the last couple of decades.

And those spells he casts can be instantly converted into healing spells, plus channeling, and the number of spells in the list that heal in various ways... I'd say healing easily ties spellcasting as main class feature for the cleric.

The CRB contains 25 cleric spells of 1st level alone. One of them is a healing spell.

At 3rd level (where the "remove X" spells start coming out), the CRB cleric has 31 spells. Four of them are some sort of "healing".

And again, that's just the Core Rulebook alone.

I think you're a little out of touch with the state of the game.


Oh, and Bill: I never got to hear how you as the GM determine who needs to get the healing abilities/feats/whatever if the party needs more healing. It would be very interesting to hear, given that what you are saying is that you as the GM force a player to build his PC a certain way. Do you give the PC something else as compensation? Do the others get to make some sort of sacrifice as well, or is it just the one whose sheet says "cleric" somewhere that has to adapt?

Oh, and how many other levels does a character have to have before he's no longer expected to do healing and buffing services for the party? Would a cleric 3/barbarian 8 be expected to? A cleric 1/rogue 4?


memorax wrote:
Nicos wrote:


Still only the cleric player right to judge.
I'm assuming that the person running the cleric has some common sense. If two characters are hug by a fireball. One goes from 100 hp to 70 the other goes from 60 to 20 with a failed save. One assumes the cleric is going to heal the one that has less hp. Sometimes it is that obvious and it still not that hard to judge IMO.

Common sense is nothing. I can claim that common sense dictates the cleric to try to do something to stop the enemy to launch another fireball, like casting an offensive spell or going to melee against the caster.

Liberty's Edge

Nicos wrote:


Common sense is nothing. I can claim that common sense dictates the cleric to try to do something to stop the enemy to launch another fireball, like casting an offensive spell or going to melee against the caster.

So if a sign says in ten different languages "do not cross live minefield ahead". Then your going to walk across it. As common sense means nothing. It's not that hard to judge whether a person needs healing. The game does a poor job is visualizing the damage. Yet if two people are damage one has lost half his hp the other a quarter of them. Chances are good you need to heal the one who lost half. You want to make it difficult process to makes the lives of the party difficult as well. That's up to you. If their one thing no matter what edition of D&D I have played is judging who needed healing. Those who have trouble either are new to the game. Or just being difficult for the sake of being difficult.

You can try to stop the caster from launching another fireball. You better have the right spell ready. Or be in melee range to hit him. If one has neither. One rushes towards the caster risking the chance of getting hit by a spell. Or he tries to at least heal the frontline fighter.

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memorax wrote:
It's not that hard to judge whether a person needs healing. ... If their one thing no matter what edition of D&D I have played is judging who needed healing. Those who have trouble either are new to the game. Or just being difficult for the sake of being difficult.

If it were easy to judge when someone needed healing, this conversation wouldn't be happening. There are LOTS of people who are TERRIBLE at determining when a healing spell is needed.

And contrary to what you state above, the ones who are the most wrong about when it's a good idea to cast a healing spell tend to be the people who are NOT new to the game, but rather have played multiple iterations of D&D and have failed (whether due to carelessness or lack of ability) to recognize that not every system works out the same.

For example, the fact that you think the way to top off HP between fights is with spells instead of wands shows that you have no idea how the different versions of the game differ. This has resulted in you being all kinds of wrong about how best to handle Pathfinder's healing, which in turn causes you to run afoul of your own definition of "common sense".


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memorax wrote:
It's not that hard to judge whether a person needs healing.

I find it's usually an extremely complicated tactical decision.

Even in a simple situation (do I cast Cure Light Wounds on the Barbarian or cast Bless or try to hit the orc with my spear?) knowing which one is best on average is not at all obvious to most players.

And most situations in my games aren't simple. Like I have a Hold Person spell that has maybe a 40% chance of working on this enemy, or I could cast Blessings of Fervor, I'm moderately optimised for combat, the enemy has taken a fair amount of damage and may or may not be on the verge of death, I don't know if there might be more enemies on the way, we've got a monk who's lost half his hit points fighting defensively against the enemy, a healthy archer with good damage output, a competent wizard who might solve any of these problems anyway, and a badly injured rogue who's currently running away. I could heal the monk, or the rogue, or channel energy to heal them both, or I could go into melee, or cast Hold Person on the enemy, or buff our group. Is there an obvious right answer? I don't think so.

Liberty's Edge

I never said it was a exact science. All i said that imo it is not to difficult to judge. I suppose I have been lucky and been gaming with players who are experienced and seem to know the ins and outs of their characters. The only time I ran into problems with healing was with a novice to the hobby. Who after a couple of sessions was able to figure out when to do it. Another who never wanted to heal anybody. Yet the first one to ask for healing if he was out of spells.

I see what some of you are saying. Not every situation is cut and dry. Sometimes it is. In certain situations it's hard to figure out what to do in others it's easy. If your fighting a enemy with high AC is that extra bonus from Bless really going to make that much of a difference. Or do you heal the Fighter who has better chance of hitting. Not a easy decision yet not all that hard to make either imo.

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memorax wrote:
Not a easy decision yet not all that hard to make either imo.

*blinks*


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It's easy to make an instinctive choice and then, if it didn't cause an immediate TPK, convince yourself it was the best decision possible. It's hard to convince a stranger on the internet.


Jiggy wrote:
memorax wrote:
It's not that hard to judge whether a person needs healing. ... If their one thing no matter what edition of D&D I have played is judging who needed healing. Those who have trouble either are new to the game. Or just being difficult for the sake of being difficult.

If it were easy to judge when someone needed healing, this conversation wouldn't be happening. There are LOTS of people who are TERRIBLE at determining when a healing spell is needed.

And contrary to what you state above, the ones who are the most wrong about when it's a good idea to cast a healing spell tend to be the people who are NOT new to the game, but rather have played multiple iterations of D&D and have failed (whether due to carelessness or lack of ability) to recognize that not every system works out the same.

For example, the fact that you think the way to top off HP between fights is with spells instead of wands shows that you have no idea how the different versions of the game differ. This has resulted in you being all kinds of wrong about how best to handle Pathfinder's healing, which in turn causes you to run afoul of your own definition of "common sense".

I think this is one of the more critical pieces of information in this discussion.

Being a Cleric (heck, being a "any character") has changed from earlier editions and it is easy to get trapped in ways of thinking.

Heck, in my first game as DM, the Cleric of the party (my older sister) was a front line fighter, had the best armor, and at first level

Could not cast any spells at all.

If I held onto that idea of what a Cleric is through every edition, I'd be in trouble with a lot of players.

When 3e came out, for my campaign world, I overruled spontaneous casting, I simply did not allow it at all (my world has a very specific explanation of how Clerics get their spells and spontaneous casting would mean rewriting that explanation almost entirely).

When 3.5e was out, I started running more games in the FLGS, and didn't use my world very often, wow what I saw in those games was worlds (literally, go figure) different from my regular campaign setting. My early experience with 3.5 was that Clerics would often select different things to do with their Channels, and rely heavily on spontaneous casting of healing spells when another character was only a hp or two away from going down.

AND I didn't start using negative HP totals until I was well into 3.0, so that meant in my games Clerics were far more aware of everyone else's hp in battle than they were once I started using negative hp (the cleric - "Wait, you are at negative 6, bah, I got three more rounds to do stuff before I NEED to worry about you..."

Not being aware of how many very different ways this game is actually played means that discussions like these can become very strange indeed.

Liberty's Edge

Jiggy wrote:
memorax wrote:
Not a easy decision yet not all that hard to make either imo.
*blinks*

Oh for heaven sake.

So out of everything j wrote in my last post that's all you came away with. Well that explains a lot. Sometimes it's difficult to judge when to heal someone. Sometimes it's really easy. I have yet to play in a game of D&D where I was wasting my time figuring out to heal or not. It's not rocket science, it's not that hard IMO. You can tell me that it is really difficult. I'm simply not going to believe you.

Maybe for a novice player starting with a cleric. A experienced player has more knowledge and has played more. Or do people simply zone out and pick their noises while waiting their turn. I pay and paid attention to everyone who I play with. So that if I ever decide to play a class. I'm not simply starting from scratch. I use the knowledge I gained from watching others play their classes. Sometimes for better or worse. I don't simply approach every table and go " rogues I wonder what they do".

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memorax wrote:

Oh for heaven sake.

So out of everything j wrote in my last post that's all you came away with. Well that explains a lot.

I'm pretty sure you're in no position to be throwing stones on that point.


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memorax wrote:
Or do you heal the Fighter who has better chance of hitting. Not a easy decision yet not all that hard to make either imo.

Most monsters doe 2-5 times more damage in one round than a cleric can heal.

Also, if you build a cleric correctly, with a single spell, maybe two, you should have just as good a chance at hitting as a Fighter.

I played a Battle Oracle in a campaign, I was just a couple points behind on the Fighter for attack bonus. He typically did more damage than me (mostly because he had another attack), but because I had Improved Trip and Improved Disarm (later Greater for both), I actually prevented huge amounts of damage, plus gave him AoO.

If I had just stood behind him and cast cure spells, I never would have kept up with monster damage. Often, he would have dropped eventually and I'd still have been face to face with the monster, only now I wouldn't have a flanking partner.

Monsters do more damage than can be healed within the action economy of a fight. Healing is for after the monsters are dead.


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...but play a cleric, and you'll still face demands, accusations of psychopathy, threats of retaliation, and so on about healing by various people you don't want to play with.

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memorax wrote:
I don't simply approach every table and go " rogues I wonder what they do".

Nobody's suggesting you should.

But replace "table" with "new ruleset", and you'd be wise to start asking those questions. Just because your past experience has been that fighters are the best at hitting things, clerics' best contribution is buffing and healing, and rogues are the best at sneaking; doesn't mean that when a new game comes out that has those three classes, that those ideas will still be true.

In Pathfinder, the fighter can be worse at hitting things than the cleric, healing spells are very rarely worth casting even from a cleric, and rogues are no better at sneaking than any other class (even including certain NPC classes).

Stubbornly refusing to consider that a given game might actually function radically differently than the tropes of the genre is nothing short of foolish.

Liberty's Edge

That's a good point Irontruth. Except that means casting two spells for two rounds. Then either staying put to avoid a AOO or moving into position to attack. Then possibly provoking a AOO. A cleric can be as effective as a Fighter but it requires him to buff himself and do nothing else. Of if he had the feat that allows a cleric to channel as a move action. Channel then spend a standard action casting a spell. Not every DM is going to let a cleric cast spell after spell. At least with channeling you don't provoke a AOO. As healing after a fight when possible is a given at my table.

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Unless you get surprised, there's always time for a least one spell on the first turn as you move in. Not every combat gives you time to cast it, but a cleric built to melee can get by without buffs most of the time. At low levels there isn't as big a difference between the two characters and at high levels you have tricks to cut down the time needed to buff before getting into melee.


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memorax wrote:

That's a good point Irontruth. Except that means casting two spells for two rounds. Then either staying put to avoid a AOO or moving into position to attack. Then possibly provoking a AOO. A cleric can be as effective as a Fighter but it requires him to buff himself and do nothing else. Of if he had the feat that allows a cleric to channel as a move action. Channel then spend a standard action casting a spell. Not every DM is going to let a cleric cast spell after spell. At least with channeling you don't provoke a AOO. As healing after a fight when possible is a given at my table.

No, most of the buffs I ran on my Battle Oracle were either hours or 10 min/level. The most common rounds duration buff I cast was Divine Favor, a cheap first level spell, and I only ever cast it on round 1. After that I was always attacking (or tripping or disarming).

I tailored my buffs to the fight, but often enough, Divine Favor was the only thing I'd cast during the fight. All healing came after.

This was for the Council of Thieves AP. We had zero party deaths. My oracle was the only party healer.

So you can moan and wail all you like about what I'm supposed to do, but I've seen it with my own two eyes. This works just fine.

I don't have the spreadsheet anymore, but a couple years ago I was looking specifically at the efficiency of healing spells. I did the math breakdown, aoe damage spells are outpace single target heals and channels. In fact, if a wizard of the same level dropped a fireball, the only way you might heal that damage up is if you channeled as a move action and cast a cure spell for your standard, then ONE target of the fireball might back to full, but only if they had saved. Even then it was only a 50/50 chance, mind you all the other targets would still be down HP.

Against single target attacks, or things like breath weapons of monsters, you had zero chance of keeping pace with the damage. Your best option is to contribute to the death of the enemy, unless someone is in immediate danger of dying and unable to retreat to safety on their own. We're talking Breath of Life territory here (where that's the only viable spell).

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memorax wrote:

That's a good point Irontruth. Except that means casting two spells for two rounds. Then either staying put to avoid a AOO or moving into position to attack. Then possibly provoking a AOO. A cleric can be as effective as a Fighter but it requires him to buff himself and do nothing else. Of if he had the feat that allows a cleric to channel as a move action. Channel then spend a standard action casting a spell. Not every DM is going to let a cleric cast spell after spell. At least with channeling you don't provoke a AOO. As healing after a fight when possible is a given at my table.

My melee cleric only needed one round to cast a buff (divine favor). And since most monsters have multiple attacks, it was actually to my advantage to spend that first round buffing: if I moved forward I could attack once, then the monster would full attack me. But if I cast a buff, then the monster moves in and attacks once and I get to be the first to full-attack.

Liberty's Edge

First off I never moaned or wailed. So please don't put words in my mouth. I know about buffs that last a long time. Sometimes you don't have a opportunity to cast the buffs or they can get dispelled. I don't always assume the best optimal situation in my posts.

@Jiggy

Unlike may other RPGs every edition of D&D has certain D&Disms baked in. No matter what the edition IMO. I don't assume every player running a cleric will heal or optimized to. Unless he somehow loses his ability to channel and/or healing is part of his class. Depending on how the player runs the character. Healing can be a major or a minor part of the character. I see a Cleric with a rpg like the Hero System they can be very different. As one can build the character he wants from beginning to end. Certain concepts are baked into classes with D&D.

I agree not every fighter is going to be the same as another. It's the exception not the rule IMO. Most Fighters IMO will hit and do more damage than a Unbuffed cleric. Are their tables where the exceptions exist of course. Again the exception not the rule.

Liberty's Edge

So no one here is every surprised, silenced, grappled, knocked out. Your characters always have the optimal advantage to every situation. I know about buffing spells. You cant do that in every situation. It all depend on the encounter and terrain.


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aw, come on dude, if you are Surprised, Silenced, Grappled, or knocked out , at least most of the time you aren't going to be doing any healing either, its a false, um, false, shoot I don't remember so I'll make something up

It's a false helicopter argument.

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memorax wrote:
Unlike may other RPGs every edition of D&D has certain D&Disms baked in. No matter what the edition IMO. I don't assume every player running a cleric will heal or optimized to. Unless he somehow loses his ability to channel and/or healing is part of his class. Depending on how the player runs the character. Healing can be a major or a minor part of the character.

You're still not hearing what's being said to you. You're so hyperfocused on the fact that the cleric can heal (and more conveniently than other classes), that you're failing to examine whether this thing the cleric can do is even worth doing in the first place!

In Pathfinder, most healing spells are really bad. Similarly, channeling to heal is (in the vast majority of cases) really bad.

Sort of like how a fighter is proficient with both martial and simple weapons, but 99% of the time he should only be using martial ones and not bothering with simple weapons because most of the time they're terrible compared to his other options.

That is the level of your stance here. Your insistence that healing will always be a part of being a cleric is comparable to telling fighters "Remember, you're proficient in simple weapons too!"

It's like if a fighter's player said, "No, I'm not going to use a club when I have a falchion," and you responded with "Unless you're playing some weird archetype that trades out simple weapon proficiency, you should be defaulting to using a club. Fighters who don't use clubs are the exception, not the rule, across all editions of D&D."

That's you right now. That's the discussion that's happening, but with clerics and healing instead of fighters and clubs.

Liberty's Edge

I disagree about healing spells. The only class feature I hear that many don't like is channeling who's really does not scale with level. At my table I have never heard anyone complain about healing spells. We're too damn grateful for the healing. Mind you clerics are versatile.

I agree with you on the simple weapons. Though that's very subjective. Some might think they suck. Others might love them. I would like to try a two weapon ranger with handaxes

You know I don't really disagree that much with you Jiggy. Funny enough we might even have somethings we agree on. To bring it back to topic. Can we at least agree that depending on the situation resource should be shared with other party members. Notice I said shared not forced to use with other party members.


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Except 'should' implies force via social expectation coercion ('Peer pressure').

To go back to a previous example, the cleric that doesn't have positive energy channels, reach weapon, and has inflict rather than cure spells.

At that point, it's probably better to go with someone who has UMD for a wand out of combat.

Part of this discussion has been predicated on the idea that the players sitting at the table at least know each other and what is bring brought to the party.

Now imagine a scenario where you were mustered five minutes before the scenario and shoved into a table with three to five other people and your whole sum of knowledge of the other player character before the GM starts reading the box text is... the name-tag of the player for the convention.

This isn't the ideal circumstance to start a debate of whether a cleric is the healer, or the barbarian the tank, etc, because until at least one fight in, you really won't have the time to compare notes.

Liberty's Edge

Saying someone should do something is not the same as saying they have to do something. I should lose weight still gives me the choice. People telling me I have to lose weight implies that I have to. What's next " mother may I pretty please get some healing". If it's the reached the point where even the word should implies coercion our society is starting to slowly to go downhill as far as I'm concerned.

With a group of new players with time and gameplay. The group should ( wait can't say that it might imply coercion) is going to come up with tactics and a general feel when certain abilities sho.... are meant to be used at the table. A experienced group of players can even coordinate in and out of battle to use their abilities to the fullest extent.

Maybe it's just me and preferring a more structured and focused group. Or simply a difference in gaming styles.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

First things first:

Shall Present tense of the word 'should'

Not every table is the same. In fact, there's a phrase for it... 'Expect Table Variation'.

Not every experienced group of players does what you say above. In fact, in at least two groups I've been affiliated with, the tactics utilized would be 'suboptimal' by most number-cruncher standards, yet the groups still work cohesively as a whole and have fun while they play. And in some cases, the notably unconventional tactics employed short-circuit/eliminate all sorts of other combat and encounters.

Some people like the math inside the game of playing the game.

Other people like getting together with their friends and blowing off steam and having fun.

That may be the divide that we're staring at each other across.


Cleric is my favourite class to play. It is a strange class, though, in PF. What happens is that the basic framework is extremely flexible, allowing for a great variety of builds, from all across the spectrum of paladin, fighter, summoner, wizard, and so on. But, unless you focus your build until it starts to hurt, you are never going to hold your own in any role. What you get is a mediocre healer/buffer without save DC's to cast offensively, and a poor meleer. The feats you get, the abilities you choose, and the stats you focus on are what make you a valuable part of the party.

Given this, hearing the bleating of "I am down to half, stop what you're doing and heal me, cleric b#*+~, or I am going to throw you to the monsters next fight!" is not much fun at all. Especially considering that in-combat healing is about the poorest choices you can make for your time.


memorax wrote:
It's not that hard to judge whether a person needs healing.

No, it isn't always that hard to determine when someone needs healing. It can be hard, however, to determine if something else is needed more.

memorax wrote:
Yet if two people are damage one has lost half his hp the other a quarter of them. Chances are good you need to heal the one who lost half.

Again, that's true. But it still doesn't address the fact that other things can be more important than healing. And that the only person who gets to make the call as to what is most important to an individual PC is the person playing that PC. Often, healing will be the most important thing, and that's what the PC will end up doing. But not always. And as a person who plays Clerics more often than any other class, let me tell you what I usually tell the other players at the table: "The more you insist that my Cleric heal your PC, regardless of whatever else might be going on at the time, the farther down on the list of priorities healing your character goes." I usually only have to back that up with "You kept whining, get to the back of the heal line" once before they realize that I'm not their healing vending machine.

When a player plays a Fighter, if the player is anything other than brand new to the game, I give them the courtesy of assuming they know how to play a Fighter. Even if they occasionally choose to grapple when (in my opinion) trip is a better option, or when they opt for a lower damage weapon with a more expansive crit range, I still assume they know what they're doing, and I don't try to play their Fighter for them.

How about showing the Cleric players (or any other caster class) the same courtesy?

memorax wrote:
If their one thing no matter what edition of D&D I have played is judging who needed healing. Those who have trouble either are new to the game. Or just being difficult for the sake of being difficult.

Or they might be, I dunno, using different standards than you are? Weighing the importance of certain factors differently than you are? Maybe they're aware of something going on that you aren't?

memorax wrote:
You can try to stop the caster from launching another fireball. You better have the right spell ready. Or be in melee range to hit him.

True. And if the Cleric isn't focused on healing (and often even if he is), then there's every likelihood that they do have the right spell ready, or they are in melee range to hit the caster. Because that's what that Cleric is designed to do.

Liberty's Edge

Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


Not every table is the same. In fact, there's a phrase for it... 'Expect Table Variation'.

I never said every table. I allow for tables to be different. With the groups I have played beyond a few minor differences it's been the same. Maybe it was my luck of the draw. Or simply finding like minded players.

Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


Not every experienced group of players does what you say above. In fact, in at least two groups I've been affiliated with, the tactics utilized would be 'suboptimal' by most number-cruncher standards, yet the groups still work cohesively as a whole and have fun while they play. And in some cases, the notably unconventional tactics employed short-circuit/eliminate all sorts of other combat and encounters.

I'm not disagreeing to any of the above. I have said it all depends on the table and the situation. Some want to heal during combat. Some outside. Some classes outside. Others want to plan strategy long term. Others charge ahead. I don't know why some here think I decided to be the only guy who speaks for all groups. If I did it was not my intention.

Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


Some people like the math inside the game of playing the game.

True but in my expereince it's rare. One of the falws if the system is that for some it has too much math. It's also not helped that different bonuses don't stack with each other. To each their own.

Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


Other people like getting together with their friends and blowing off steam and having fun.

Which I never said. I also play for fun and letting off steam.

There no reason why one can't also do some planning of strategy in and out of the game. It kind of ruins immersion when a player from game to game does not bother to at least learn their character. Or worse not learn from their mistakes.

Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


That may be the divide that we're staring at each other across.

Any divide was created by others. I acknowledge others viewpoints. I am passionate on certain topics. I'm not perfect nor my viewpoints.

Liberty's Edge

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My characters are almost never optimized.I'm just happy to be able to play fun and challenging games with a group of players who generally cooperate. As far as I am concerned, players should be able to make the character they want as long as they cooperate with the group and not actively sabotage or undermine team game play. Nor does it matter to me whether group tactics are optimized or most efficient as long as a TPK is avoided. I have found that there are many ways to have fun playing as long as the group is not severely divided, argumentative or vindictive. When I play clerics, I have no qualms about healing or buffing team mates or using my resources to help my group. Let's not get all worked up over issues that have no one all inclusive "right answer". Happy gaming to all.


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memorax wrote:
I never said it was a exact science. All i said that imo it is not to difficult to judge. I suppose I have been lucky and been gaming with players who are experienced and seem to know the ins and outs of their characters. The only time I ran into problems with healing was with a novice to the hobby. Who after a couple of sessions was able to figure out when to do it.

Is it reading too much into this thread to imagine that for these new folks at your table, 'figuring out when to do it' could be re-stated as "they learned to heal when Memorax told them they should be healing"?

Nah. I won't draw that conclusion.

memorax wrote:
That's a good point Irontruth. Except that means casting two spells for two rounds. Then either staying put to avoid a AOO or moving into position to attack. Then possibly provoking a AOO.

Ah. So, earlier in this thread, the theory was "the caster can take 1 round away from doing what they were designed to do, in order to do what I want them to do". Now, it's "the caster can take 2 rounds of doing what I want instead of what they're good at, then move or stay put as I think best, then maybe get attacked".

Uhm. No. This is sounding worse and worse. The caster would be much better off ignoring your plan for them, and instead focusing on what they do best.

Most sessions begin with a quick round of 'introductions', where the players give a quick synopsis of what their PC does. If the person playing the Cleric (or any other caster) doesn't include your ideas of what that class should be doing in their explanation, well, you're on notice that that PC isn't going to function the way you want. If you choose not to adjust your expectations accordingly, that's on you.

Liberty's Edge

Amanda Plageman wrote:


Is it reading too much into this thread to imagine that for these new folks at your table, 'figuring out when to do it' could be re-stated as "they learned to heal when Memorax told them they should be healing"?

Nah. I won't draw that conclusion.

My main response at the start was play your character as you want. No one is forced to do use a class feature. To assume the consequences good or bad that arise from withholding the class feature.

I don't tell people to heal nor assume they have too. I offer suggestions and advice. They can ignore or tell me to not give and advice. I'm fine with that too. Their a poster who came yelling into this thread to try to get his or her point across and I'm the one trying to push a agenda.

Amanda Plageman wrote:


Uhm. No. This is sounding worse and worse. The caster would be much better off ignoring your plan for them, and instead focusing on what they do best.

Translation " I don't like your advice therefore it's useless". You know sometimes the person whose advice you think is useless it's might not. Again your assuming that every situation will go your way and only your way. Not to mention again feel free to ignore my advice. If something negative comes from it it's on you. Want to mouth of at the person who crafts magic items from the group because you think it's the best thing for your character to do. Even when others tell you not to. Go for it. If the npc no longers crafts items for your character. It's not the DMs fault for being unfair. It's because you alienated the npc.

Amanda Plageman wrote:


Most sessions begin with a quick round of 'introductions', where the players give a quick synopsis of what their PC does. If the person playing the Cleric (or any other caster) doesn't include your ideas of what that class should be doing in their explanation, well, you're on notice that that PC isn't going to function the way you want. If you choose not to adjust your expectations accordingly, that's on you.

I'm not so kind of control freak at the table. So kindly stop portraying me as one. If a Cleric wants to focus on just buffing and attacking go for it. If they want to heal and buff go for it. If players die under your watch assume that they ain't going to be happy. Even if you ran the character the way you wanted. Telling me "but I played the character the way I wanted" is not going to make it easy for anyone to be happy with a character death.

As sometimes one can't wait until after combat to heal. You assuming optimal conditions which don't exist during combat. A player who ran a barbarian refused to be healed because his character was played in such a way that he would keep going into battle until he had no hp. Next battle he died.

I can respect that a Cleric does not want to heal. At the same time one has to respect the wishes of the rest of the group if they don't want to invest in potions or wands. A party that does not is asking for a TPK imo. Just like one can't force a player to use a certain class feature. One can't force a group to invest in alternative methods of healing. Same thing with UMD. Unless it's a skill that comes with a class. Most players I know are not going to spend points in taking that skill. Again good to have in case the primary healer is out of action. Or can't show up to the game. One can't force them to. Playing a Fighter forget about it.

The group should be balancing both the group and the players interests at the table. One should not outweigh the other.


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memorax wrote:
If a Cleric wants to focus on just buffing and attacking go for it. If they want to heal and buff go for it. If players die under your watch assume that they ain't going to be happy. Even if you ran the character the way you wanted. Telling me "but I played the character the way I wanted" is not going to make it easy for anyone to be happy with a character death.

It's a harsh burden to put on a Cleric player that they're responsible for ensuring everyone else doesn't die, and all deaths are presumed to be the Cleric's fault. (Ignoring for the moment the implied assumption that casting healing spells is the best way to prevent deaths, which it often isn't.) It leads to games where no-one wants to be a Cleric.

Liberty's Edge

Matthew Downie wrote:


It's a harsh burden to put on a Cleric player that they're responsible for ensuring everyone else doesn't die, and all deaths are presumed to be the Cleric's fault. (Ignoring for the moment the implied assumption that casting healing spells is the best way to prevent deaths, which it often isn't.) It leads to games where no-one wants to be a Cleric.

I don't mind character death if a player refuses to heal me if it's effective. If I die because of a class that can heal (not just the cleric) decides for one extra hit that does nothing in the long run. It's a bitter pill to sometimes swallow imo. It's a pain in the behind to be brought back from the dead in this game. Depending on how much backstory a DM wants for character that's a extra burden as well.

Your right is unfair and placing a burden on the player. All that I ask is if your going to risk the lives of the other party members for a moment of glory make it count. If that extra hit is going to kill or make a enemy withdraw. Or the spell is going to be effective and not bounce of SR or the creature resistant or immune to the effect go for it. If it's neither then it's simply a wasted tactic. Followed by a waste of a PC death. As well as one hell of a risk to take with other players characters. At the very least apologize to the player whose PC died. Telling another person to suck it up because they wanted to do something more fun at the table. It's not going to be taken well. As well be surprised if the same player does it to you. If other pc lives means nothing because one always wants to do the fun option at the table. Well it might also be unfair for the player to take revenge I can't blame them if they do. I won't be at all impressed and lose a measure of respect for such a player. The player willing to bet the lives of other pcs so they can have fun at all times is also not going to get my respect either.

The guy who alienated the pc who crafted items always seems to act the same way. It maybe fun to tweek the noses of the npcs in the long run it's hurting the group. Telling me well "I'm playing my alignment" is not going to make go "that's okay keep screwing the party over". Mind you he is not really playing his alignment which is chaotic neutral. More like idiotic anarchist.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
memorax wrote:


Your right is unfair and placing a burden on the player. All that I ask is if your going to risk the lives of the other party members for a moment of glory make it count. If that extra hit is going to kill or make a enemy withdraw. Or the spell is going to be effective and not bounce of SR or the creature resistant or immune to the effect go for it. If it's neither then it's simply a wasted tactic. Followed by a waste of a PC death. As well as one hell of a risk to take with other players characters. At the very least apologize to the player whose PC died.

And then we add in intelligent opponents who see that someone is doing in-combat healing.

Presumption: That person is too weak and ineffective to fight us, so they're trying to do the next best thing and get other people back up to fight us. Well, hell, we'd better make sure that the folks we take down *STAY DOWN* then, shouldn't we?

As noted earlier, in-combat healing isn't all that great, and if it becomes obvious that the party is trying to do it in a fight, some NPCs WILL shift to coup de grace or simply applying more damage to the downed and unconscious to ensure that they don't get back up.

In such a circumstance, the healing party would have probably been better suited to get a ranged weapon out or provide the services of a flanking buddy, imo.

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