View Full Version : Heal-based healing? [D&D 3.5]

2009-07-07, 07:53 PM
I'm trying to make the skill Heal, y'know, useful. In addition, it would be helpful for times when parties don't have, or don't want, a dedicated healer. Can anyone help me make rules for healing HP damage with Heal? I was thinking of maybe something like the 4E healing surge system, perhaps. Any comments or advice would be helpful.

2009-07-07, 07:58 PM
The spells are quite useful (particularly out of combat, but sometimes in combat as well). If you want to make the skill worthwhile, you basically have to restrict magical healing significantly.

And then something like:
As a full round action, make a heal check to restore a character up to [heal check] damage. A character may benefit from this action only once per day.

2009-07-07, 08:00 PM
Hmm... Perhaps a percentage would be better, to keep it a bit more realistic? The better your heal-skill the higher a percentage would be healed.

2009-07-07, 08:01 PM
Or perhaps allow it to heal non-lethal damage.

2009-07-07, 08:05 PM
Rolling a d20 and then healing based on the roll would be a start. I guess I'm used to NWN so I thought it did that anyway.

Mark Hall
2009-07-07, 08:07 PM
How about a simple "Pass a DC X Heal check to allow a person to heal Y?" Maybe Y is their hit die, or their constitution bonus times their level, or some such?

So, for example, you make it a DC 15... doable if you're untrained and have no talent, but hardish... fairly easy if you're trained and even a little bit talented. You're healing a 4th level Fighter with a 17 Con.

You could rule that a healing action would heal their HD... 1d10. This applies to all characters relatively equally... while a fighter can heal more, he has more to heal. You might also include the Con bonus in this, making a healing action be 1d10+3 for this fighter. If they have multiple HD types, they heal the largest.

You could rule that a healing action would heal their con bonus times their level... 12 HP, in this case. This severely disadvantages those with Con penalties, since they need magical healing or long rests to heal... but, they're frail, so it makes a degree of sense.

You could also go with a more sliding scale. Say, it heals everyone 1D4 HP, +1 per 3 or 5 points by which you exceed 15.

Personally, I'd probably combine 1 and 3. Everyone heals their HD + their Con Bonus, and if you beat the healing roll by 5, you add +1 to the healing. I'd make it a full round action for you, and a move action for them (in other words, they have to stay still, and can't take a large number of actions), and I'd limit it to a once-per-encounter thing.

2009-07-07, 08:19 PM
I was thinking of maybe something like the 4E healing surge system, perhaps.

The closest thing to this in 3e is Reserve Points (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/reservePoints.htm). You could start with something like that; improve them, but also require Heal checks in order to use them?

2009-07-07, 08:39 PM
This method has NOT been playtested... And it's going to have a lot of bookwork.

DC of 20 on others. 35 on yourself

If you make the DC, you heal 1 point of damage for each wound the person has suffered since the last time they rested, received magical healing, or Heal Skill medical care (death stabilization, poison recovery, and disease care do not count for this restriction).
For every 5 points by which you beat the DC, you heal an extra point per wound.

ex: If someone has been wounded for 5, 3, 2, and 6. A DC 20 heal check will heal them for 4. A DC 25 will heal them for 8. A DC 30 will heal them for 11 (the third wound was completely restored with a DC 25, so further care was unnecessary)
10 full round actions and a healers kit required. Can be performed without proper tools at a -5 penalty.

Aid another: Yes. The assistant must have his own healers kit to work from and meet a DC 20. If he borrows the main doctors kit, both take a -5 (he's getting in the way). If he succeeds, he raises the doctor's roll by 5.
Take 20? No.
Take 10? Yes.

2009-07-07, 08:49 PM
How does this look?:

For every [HD] HP you have, you gain that amount of reserve points.

Ex: A level 6 fighter has 47 hit points and a con of 15. Divide that by his Hit die, 1d10, and he has four reserve points.

With a DC 15 Heal check, you may use one of those points to heal your hit die, plus your con modifier. For every two points higher than 15, you heal an additional hit point.

Ex: The same fighter is slugged by an ogre in a fight. Afterwards, he tries to patch himself up. He gets lucky, rolling a nat 20 on his heal check, but unfortunately, his wisdom is subpar, an 8, and he has no ranks in heal, so makes a 19 overall. He gets ten hit points back due to his hit dice, two due to his con, and two due to his heal check, for a total of 14 hit points healed.

Special: You may not take twenty on this use of Heal, though you can take ten.

2009-07-07, 09:11 PM
Maybe instead of providing actual healing, you have it provide temporary hit points that don't stack and can't bring your total above your maximum. As to amount...depends how useful you want it to be and how you want it to scale. Maybe target's level or (level + Con modifier) per five points rolled over 10 on the Heal check? Or, for something that's a bit stronger at low levels but doesn't scale as well, 1 hp per point rolled over 10.

2009-07-07, 09:35 PM
Limit the base healing, then add their ranks in the Heal skill to their heal spells?

Or instead of adding your caster level, add your Heal skill ranks/bonus?

2009-07-07, 09:50 PM
Maybe instead of providing actual healing, you have it provide temporary hit points that don't stack and can't bring your total above your maximum.

That's a good way to avoid infinite healing without adding a lot of bookwork. I approve. :smallsmile:

2009-07-07, 10:37 PM
Maybe instead of providing actual healing, you have it provide temporary hit points that don't stack and can't bring your total above your maximum.

Temp hit points don't work for what's most needed here. They provide protection against *further* damage (while they last), but they don't keep the creature from bleeding to death from damage already received. For that you'd need to bind the wounds and stabilize him, which will stop him from bleeding out already - and then he's still unconscious.

A two-point temporary Con bonus would grant 1 HP per the target's level. This will revive a dying character (if you get him above zero HP) but you better get him stabilization and/or *real* healing before the Con bonus wears off.

But I really think that just plain ordinary hit points make the most sense. Formula to be determined by discussion.

2009-07-07, 11:36 PM
Maybe you could keep track of each individual wound then apply a DC check for recovering damage. The DC could vary according to the severity of the wound and possibly the type.

eg. HP damage from a sword might require DC 10 to recover a point, DC 15 to recover 25% and DC 25 to recover 50%.

If the wound was from acid or fire it might have a higher DC to fix.

2009-07-07, 11:39 PM
Recovers HP equal to the target's character level multiplied by their constitution modifier (minimum 1) plus additional HP equal to every point by which you exceed DC 15, multiplied by the target's constitution modifier. You can only Heal Damage in this way once an hour.

2009-07-08, 12:39 AM
A potential balancing mechanic would be to have hit point damage healed by the Heal skill to only be converted into nonlethal damage (which then recovers at an hourly rate, instead of a daily rate). The amount of damage that could be converted each day would be limited to the one's Con bonus + HD. (So a 1st level Fighter with a Con 14 could have up to 3 hit points converted to nonlethal damage in a day, while an 8th level Barbarian with a Con 18 could have up to 12 hit points converted to nonlethal damage in a day.) The skill check would determine exactly how much is cured in a single check, and would expend a 'use' from a Healing Kit (which have, IIRC, 10 'uses').

Only magical / supernatural healing would make wounds 'just go away.'

As magical healing cures an equal amount of nonlethal damage when used, combining the mundane Heal skill and curing magic could effectively double the effect of the Cure spells.

T.G. Oskar
2009-07-08, 01:24 AM
I'd think I'd go for the Restore Hit Points use of d20 Modern's Treat Injury (http://www.scratchfactory.com/ModernSRD/Skills.php?Name=Treat%20Injury)

It's not particularly hard to adapt. You already have a healing kit, which mostly provides a circumstance bonus to Heal checks; what you can do is, by sacrificing the circumstance bonus, you can heal the target 1d4 hit points once per day.

If still not enough, attempt the surgery version: DC 20, 1d4+1/(-10<X<0 negative hit points) hours, requires a better healing kit, if successful grant the character 1d6 HP/character level healing, and character gets fatigued for 24 hours -2/point of success beyond 20 (minimum 6 hours). Pretty complex, but not so hard to adapt. You could attempt a rushed surgery by taking a -10 penalty and attempting to do it on one hour.

That would make healing kits (and the adapted versions of surgery kits) even more useful than before, work one or two surgeries while resting, and fatigue isn't so hard to beat up (though it's a punishing penalty nonetheless)

That, or treat Heal as the Warforged's Craft checks to repair: a minimum of 15 to succeed, heal (X-15) points of damage (minimum 0 HP; negatives aren't counted since it's presumed the skill failed). But that takes 8 hours, which is mostly worse than long-term care.

There's a few ways to make Heal slightly useful, though. The skill trick Hands of Healing heal 1d6 points of damage on a successful stabilize check (and ONLY a stabilize check)

I'd also make Gnomes especially good at surgery. Just because.

Olo Demonsbane
2009-07-08, 02:19 AM
Thats pretty funny actually..."Ok, gang, time to stop for the night. Now who are we performing surgery on tonight?"

2009-07-08, 03:29 AM
Usually wounds don't go away by first aid and certainly don't so with surgery. They will just heal much faster naturally after that.

So if you want a more in-game explained variant, I would suggest alchemical healing substances. They'd work like healing potions, but require a Heal check to be applied correctly and it takes some time (like say 10 minutes). On the other hand, they are much more cheaper than a healing potion and a healer can easily afford to have a whole bag of them.

I think I'll actually include that in my game. :smallbiggrin:

2009-07-08, 04:16 AM
I think the idea of alchemic healing would work the best.

Though personally I dislike the idea of using the Heal skill to restore lost hit points. It always comes across to me as a sort of Bleach way of healing
(For those unfamilier with Bleach, warning, spoilers)
During the first main story Arc, the main character, Ichigo, seems to get into nothing but fights and more fights. During every single fight he is stabed, slashed, and otherwise made to lose alot of blood. He will then either bandage his wounds or an ally would, he'll rest for, the longest, a day, then continue on the rampage unhindered. In fact, the fight scene near the end of the first story arc, which is considered quite an iconic Bleach scene, hes still wearing bandages.

The reason I call using the heal skill to restore hit points "The Bleach way of healing" is because I think it encourages a sort of "I'm hit, bandage me, I'm fine again, lets go" train of thought.