Is Healer's Kit needed for Natural Medicine?


Advice

Sovereign Court

I finally found someone willing to run a game of PF2e for me and a new group of players on Sunday. I've created my character, but I have 1 question: He's an Herbalist background, and gets the Natural Medicine feat. It says you get a bonus if you are using fresh herbs in the wilderness. Does that mean I don't need a Healer' kit at all, or if I take the time to search nature for the fresh herbs I need, then I get the +2 bonus, or I can use the Healer's kit herbs for no bonus in an emergency?


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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

My interpretation has been that you still need a Healer's Kit. No matter where you are you can still use Nature, but if you're in the wilderness you can potentially get the +2 benefit.


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I think it is probably better to talk it through with your GM and the rest of the party and choose an answer that feels most reasonable to everyone than to show up and say the message boards said "x,y,z." By RAW I think it requires healer's tools all the time, and recommend the player buy one, and get a onus when in the wilderness, but I would also probably allow a character with natural medicine feat to attempt a check with improvised tools if they have access to wilderness herbs.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

The rules as written would say that you need healer's tools regardless. (Natural Medicine says you use the Treat Wounds activity, Treat Wounds has "Requirements healer's tools," ergo you need healer's tools.) Unless this is for PFS, though, Unicore is right - your GM and group might see it differently, and that's going to be the interpretation that matters. You might also see if your GM would allow you "herbalist's tools" that work for Natural Medicine checks if you want to lean into the distinction.


As others have said, by the rules anytime you use the Treat a Wound action, you need healer's tools. Of course, the DM could houserule something else but the herbs and tools don't really interact: the +2 herbs is about the bonus to the roll and the tools are about the ability to make the roll in the first place.


To be fair, I think it'd be super cool if Natural Medicine had the additional benefit of not needing to use a kit.

Cuz, you know, natural medicine...


rainzax wrote:

To be fair, I think it'd be super cool if Natural Medicine had the additional benefit of not needing to use a kit.

Cuz, you know, natural medicine...

Well it'd be nifty if a Chirugeon could use alchemy tool too but that's not how things turned out. :P

Sovereign Court

graystone wrote:
rainzax wrote:

To be fair, I think it'd be super cool if Natural Medicine had the additional benefit of not needing to use a kit.

Cuz, you know, natural medicine...

Well it'd be nifty if a Chirugeon could use alchemy tool too but that's not how things turned out. :P

I went ahead and bought Healer's Tools for the character, but I agree with Rainax that the name of the feat suggests you are gathering what you need from nature, and that that would be cool. Large leaves for bandages, sticks for splints, moss and saps for ointments and poultices, etc.


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rainzax wrote:

To be fair, I think it'd be super cool if Natural Medicine had the additional benefit of not needing to use a kit.

Cuz, you know, natural medicine...

There is a big difference between a person slapping leaves on a person, and someone either tools to properly grind the herbs into a medicinal paste, salve, or soup.

At the minimum, I would expect a natural herbalist to have a stone and pestle. I agree about the potential for improvised tools, but I would give the check a -2 rather than the normal +2. Otherwise, you are just relying on the raw power of the selected herb without doing much to actually apply it.


Samurai wrote:
I agree with Rainax that the name of the feat suggests you are gathering what you need from nature

Pathfinder has a BAD track record of names not matching effects. Pummeling strike doesn't require fists and vicious stomp doesn't require your feet. In PF2, assurance doesn't actually give you any assurance you'll make your roll.

Samurai wrote:
Large leaves for bandages, sticks for splints, moss and saps for ointments and poultices, etc.

Yes, it'd be cool. If you're lucky, your Dm will agree.

lemeres wrote:
I agree about the potential for improvised tools, but I would give the check a -2 rather than the normal +2.

I'd be inclined to let them cancel each other out if I allowed improvised tools.


graystone wrote:
lemeres wrote:
I agree about the potential for improvised tools, but I would give the check a -2 rather than the normal +2.
I'd be inclined to let them cancel each other out if I allowed improvised tools.

Maybe -2 for a complete lack of tools, and no penalty if you can scrounge together basics like clean clothes, needle/thread for stitching, some clean cooking gear, and the like.

I can see an adventuring party having that stuff on hand for normal use. The 'complete' lack of tools would only be for emergency situations in the wildness after you lost your gear.


lemeres wrote:
graystone wrote:
lemeres wrote:
I agree about the potential for improvised tools, but I would give the check a -2 rather than the normal +2.
I'd be inclined to let them cancel each other out if I allowed improvised tools.

Maybe -2 for a complete lack of tools, and no penalty if you can scrounge together basics like clean clothes, needle/thread for stitching, some clean cooking gear, and the like.

I can see an adventuring party having that stuff on hand for normal use. The 'complete' lack of tools would only be for emergency situations in the wildness after you lost your gear.

Oh, if you're taking a complete lack of tools into account, then I'd agree: I was looking at it with those basics. If it's just spit, an herb and saying 'just hold that there for 10 min', I might go with -2 too.

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