Why bother with Medpatch or Sprayflesh?


Advice

Scarab Sages

So if I have 50cr to spare to buy medical recovery from wounds, I could buy a Medpatch or a Mk1 Serum of Healing. (Both L1, 50cr). Which to choose? Let's see...

Medpatch adds +10 to Medicine check (untrained) to Stop Bleeding OR Stabilize Dying - but there's a chance to fail, and you only get 1 of 2 effects.
OR
pour a Serum of Healing MK 1 in, they gain 1D8 HP (ave 4.5), and gaining HP automatically stops Bleed and ends Dying.

After that I look at Treat Deadly Wounds - needs a Medkit (Basic DC25, or Advanced DC20 to use), restores target's level HP (or their level + your Int bonus if you beat DC by 5).
You can only do that 1/day (without a Medlab, so not in the field...) To get another go I can spend 440cr to buy a L5 Sprayflesh, and can use that to allow a 2nd Treat Deadly Wounds test
OR
I could spend 425cr to buy a L5 Mk2 Serum of Healing, needs no skill, and restores 3D8 (ave 13.5) HP. Oh, and costs 15cr less.
So if the wounded party is below L8 (expert medic) or L13 (basic TDW DC), you get more HP back from the Serum, no need for skill, no risk to fail.

So why on earth would I waste 50cr on a Medpatch when I could buy a Serum of Healing for the same credits?
Why Sprayflesh when I could buy a Mk2 Serum of healing and save 15cr?


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You wouldn't if both are available. Six packs of serums of healing are the go to doctor in starfinder. At least when poisons and disease aren't involved.

Now, also in setting, there are plenty of places that don't have magic, so you have to deal with the mundane solutions which aren't as good.

You need 1 rank in life or physical science to craft a medpatch. You need 1 rank in mysticism to craft a serum of healing. Depending on where you are, one of those might be more common than the other.


Pathfinder Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber

Personally I think the problem you're seeing is that magical healing is too strong relative to mundane healing.

It seems to me they wanted to make it a little tough to get your stuff back (so limited mundane/technological healing capabilities) but also had to meet the "this is how it is in Pathfinder" expectations as setting a kind of floor for magical healing.

It's something I houserule, but yeah - I don't think they're really worth it as is.


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Garretmander wrote:

You wouldn't if both are available. Six packs of serums of healing are the go to doctor in starfinder. At least when poisons and disease aren't involved.

Now, also in setting, there are plenty of places that don't have magic, so you have to deal with the mundane solutions which aren't as good.

I think the question is why are they priced the same if one is clearly superior to the other?


To be fair, there are a few other examples in the book where some items are pretty much the same price but one is superior to the other.
Healing serums are all well and good, I don't have an issue with magic and high tech solutions being superior to more mundane methods.
Even in our world there are inferior items which cost more then better ones simply by having a brand.


Yeah, non magical healing options in this game are WAY too intensive compared to magical ones, be they gear feats or equipment. Non magical doctor is one of the few concepts I put down as just not working in this system.


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Starfinder Charter Superscriber

If the setting made a big deal about there being some planets or planes where magic simply didn't function, and adventures supported that notion, then mundane healing would be really useful. But I don't think we're likely to see that, because spellcaster PCs would be (perhaps understandably) very unhappy.

Second Seekers (Jadnura)

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Not really relevant to the usefulness of medpatches and sprayflesh, but, just to point it out: biohackers' microlabs allow them to craft mundane, non-magical serums of healing using life sci/phys sci, rather than mysticism. Just in case the whole "how to heal in an antimagic zone?" question comes up, just buy your serums from Dr. Boltarn's Space Pharmacy, rather than from the Temple of Sarenrae.


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I prefer Cayden Cailean brand healing serums. Drink till you feel better, one way or another.


BigNorseWolf wrote:
I prefer Cayden Cailean brand healing serums. Drink till you feel better, one way or another.

Or don't feel anything at all!

Scarab Sages

Thanks, folks - confirms my suspicion. (I was wondering if I had missed some other rule elsewhere).

I suppose one option is to nerf Magical Healing (or effectively all healing), by invoking the One Source rule. So you would not be able to stack (benefit from) the same kind of healing at once (unless a specific rule overrode it - such as the Treat Deadly Wounds).
Thus, you could follow up a battle with 1 (or the best single application) Serum of Healing (any mark), 1 Mystic Cure (any level), 1 medpatch, 1 Treat Deadly Wounds, ...

That does encourage a) use higher level items, as the lower level items aren't stacking, and b) diversify - items, spells (different arcane traditions and spell types), skills,...

There's be a cut-off after which you could re-apply. Short-break (10mins) is the soft option.

Any thoughts on that?


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Gaining healing in subsequent rounds is not source stacking. It's not a bonus, its putting something back.


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Also, I always wonder why the knee-jerk reaction is 'Healing OP! Nerf plz!'?

You get the majority of your health back with a 10 min breather. Why even bother trying to nerf down HP healing?

A longer adventuring day is a good thing. Pulling out of an encounter series to rest is a bad thing. If anything, buff non-magical healing. Make sprayflesh the equal of a serum of healing.


I'm with Garret, why does healing need to be nerfed because simple tech isn't as useful? Whats next? Magic missile does more damage then my laser pistol, it needs to be nerfed.
Magic is not mundane healing, its Magic. If your high magic world can't out do a slightly funky plaster, its not really a high magic world is it.


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Garretmander wrote:

Also, I always wonder why the knee-jerk reaction is 'Healing OP! Nerf plz!'?

You get the majority of your health back with a 10 min breather. Why even bother trying to nerf down HP healing?

A longer adventuring day is a good thing. Pulling out of an encounter series to rest is a bad thing. If anything, buff non-magical healing. Make sprayflesh the equal of a serum of healing.

Its nothing to do with being overpowered, in my case.

I reduced the effectiveness of magical healing to make the technological doctor feel relevant without making it even harder to die from wounds.


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Steve Geddes wrote:


I reduced the effectiveness of magical healing to make the technological doctor feel relevant without making it even harder to die from wounds.

Tech doctor is one of 3 or four builds that just doesn't work in starfinder.


I'm not sure how reducing magical healing effectiveness doesn't make it harder to die from wounds... but we also might have mutually exclusive house rules in effect.


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Pathfinder Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber
Garretmander wrote:
I'm not sure how reducing magical healing effectiveness doesn't make it harder to die from wounds... but we also might have mutually exclusive house rules in effect.

It makes it easier to die if it’s harder to heal….no?

Edit: maybe I used too many nested negatives…

You asked why nerf magic healing, why not instead boost technological healing?

The reason I don’t want to boost the healing available to Starfinder characters is because it’s already really, really hard to die from wounds. Boosting healing would make it even harder to die. By reducing the effectiveness of magical healing the technological healing becomes more attractive and regulr “hit point combat” doesn’t become too easy to the point of shrugging at multiple “deadly” encounters.


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Pathfinder Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:


I reduced the effectiveness of magical healing to make the technological doctor feel relevant without making it even harder to die from wounds.

Tech doctor is one of 3 or four builds that just doesn't work in starfinder.

Yeah and the “ship’s doctor” is such an iconic role. We’re happy to do without the cleric in Starfinder in order to get the medical officer viable.


Steve Geddes wrote:
Garretmander wrote:
I'm not sure how reducing magical healing effectiveness doesn't make it harder to die from wounds... but we also might have mutually exclusive house rules in effect.

It makes it easier to die if it’s harder to heal….no?

Edit: maybe I used too many nested negatives…

You asked why nerf magic healing, why not instead boost technological healing?

The reason I don’t want to boost the healing available to Starfinder characters is because it’s already really, really hard to die from wounds. Boosting healing would make it even harder to die. By reducing the effectiveness of magical healing the technological healing becomes more attractive and regulr “hit point combat” doesn’t become too easy to the point of shrugging at multiple “deadly” encounters.

Ah, I do the PF1 death and dying rules instead. Tends to mean that if you're into hit points a bad crit can likely kill you.


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Pathfinder Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber

We’ve grappled with lots of houserules - the quick heal of stamina is a plus, but we still want a risk of death.

I like the way Starfinder made afflictions scary, but the danger of losing hit points is pretty negligible.

Scarab Sages

I've been thinking about this, and come to the impression that a very simple straightforward change is:

Serum of Healing is just a quaffable version of the injectable Spell Ampoule "Mystic Cure I" .. "Mystic Cure III".

That makes the items be:

Mk1 = L3, 300cr, heals 1D8 .... replaces L1, 50cr, 1D8
Mk2 = L6, 700cr, heals 3D8 .... replaces L5, 425cr, 3D8
Mk3 = L9, 3000cr, heals 5D8 .... replaces L9, 1950cr, 6D8 (drop for consistency the spell)

Thinking of some RL examples, I suspect that for applying to team-mates, the injectable version is actually *better* than the quaffable one ... a super version of the Epi-Pen!
"Man down!" ... "Jab!" ... up again...

I can see a market for the quaffable versions to apply to oneself. Especially the flavoured versions. Or chewy bars/cookie... (Anyone remember Magic Brownies from college days?))

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