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ElFi
2018-06-19, 03:00 PM
I love playing supporters and healing classes in roleplaying games, and the Healer from D&D 3.5, for all its flaws, has always intrigued me as a class. So, taking cues from a number of healer fixes and remakes I've seen over the years, I decided to make this class in Pathfinder as something between a homage and a remake. It's not a carbon copy of the 3.5 Healer by any means (It's an arcane caster instead of a divine caster, doesn't have a pacifist vow, and uses the "cast spontaneously from any spell on its list" mechanic utilized by the Warmage, for three big changes), but I think the spirit of the class as one purely devoted to mending injuries and protecting the party remains. So without further ado, I introduce the class for reading and comments:


HEALER

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/HealingHandsJ_9784.jpg

Show me where it hurts.

While magical healing normally falls under the purview of divine-channeling clerics and wise alchemists, there are very few who pursue the art of repairing both the body and soul as doggedly and constructively as the healer. Uniquely attuned to the positive energy of the universe and possessing an intuitive understanding of the body and how to tend to its wounds, healers are peerless at mending all manner of injury and malediction.

Role: Though their combat prowess is limited at best, healers are unmatched at mending injuries and staving off hazardous conditions even in the thick of battle. Their presence greatly improves the stamina and survivability of the average adventuring party.

Alignment: Any. Though their typical role of tending to the sick and injured means that most healers gravitate towards good alignments, creatures of any moral leaning can learn the ways of a healer.

Hit Die: d8.

Starting Gold: 2d6 x 10 gp (Average 75 gp). In addition, each character begins play with an outfit worth 10 gp or less.

Class Skills
The healerís class skills are Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Knowledge (arcana) (Int), Knowledge (nature) (Int), Knowledge (the planes) (Int), Perception (Wis), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), Survival (Wis) and Use Magic Device (Cha).

Skill Ranks per Level: 4 + Int modifier.


TABLE: HEALER


Level
Base Attack Bonus
Fort Save
Ref Save
Will Save
Special
1st
2nd
3rd
4th
5th
6th
7th
8th
9th


1st

+0

+2

+0

+2
Cantrips, channel life, eschew materials, healerís protection, merciful combat
3
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
-


2nd

+1

+3

+0

+3
Bonus feat, lifesight (20 ft), ranged healing

4
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
-


3rd

+1

+3

+1

+3
Font of energy
5
3
-
-
-
-
-
-
-


4th

+2

+4

+1

+4
Advanced learning, merciful combat
6
3
-
-
-
-
-
-
-


5th

+2

+4

+1

+4
Aegis of health
6
4
3
-
-
-
-
-
-


6th

+3

+5

+2

+5
Lifesight (40 ft), swift response (2/day)
6
5
3
-
-
-
-
-
-


7th

+3

+5

+2

+5
Merciful combat
6
6
4
3
-
-
-
-
-


8th

+4

+6

+2

+6
Advanced learning, bonus feat
6
6
5
3
-
-
-
-
-


9th

+4

+6

+3

+6
Purified body
6
6
6
4
3
-
-
-
-


10th

+5

+7

+3

+7
Lifesight (60 ft), merciful combat
6
6
6
5
3
-
-
-
-


11th

+5

+7

+3

+7
Will to endure
6
6
6
6
4
3
-
-
-


12th

+6/+1

+8

+4

+8
Advanced learning
6
6
6
6
5
3
-
-
-


13th

+6/+1

+8

+4

+8
Merciful combat, swift response (3/day)
6
6
6
6
6
4
3
-
-


14th

+7/+2

+9

+4

+9
Bonus feat, lifesight (80 ft)
6
6
6
6
5
3
3
-
-


15th

+7/+2

+9

+5

+9
Font of energy (greater)
6
6
6
6
6
6
4
3
-


16th

+8/+3

+10

+5

+10
Advanced learning
6
6
6
6
6
6
5
3
-


17th

+8+3

+10

+5

+10
Perfected form
6
6
6
6
6
6
6
4
3


18th

+9/+4

+11

+6

+11
Lifesight (100 ft)
6
6
6
6
6
6
6
5
4


19th

+9/+4

+11

+6

+11
Swift response (4/day)
6
6
6
6
6
6
6
6
5


20th

+10/+5

+12

+6

+12
Advanced learning, bonus feat, master healer
6
6
6
6
6
6
6
6
6



Class Features
All the following are class features of the healer.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A healer is proficient with daggers and quarterstaves, plus one additional simple weapon of his choice, but not with any kind of armor or shield. Wearing armor interferes with a healerís somatic gestures, causing his spells to fail.

Spells: A healer casts arcane spells, which are drawn from the healer spell list. He may cast any spell he knows without preparing it ahead of time. To cast a spell, a healer must have a Wisdom score equal to at least 10 + the spellís level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a healerís spell is 10 + the spellís level + the healerís Wisdom modifier.

Like other spellcasters, a healer can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. His base daily allotment is given on Table: Healer Spells Per Day. In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if he has a high Wisdom score (see the section in the core rulebook Table: Ability Modifiers and Bonus Spells).

Unlike other casters who do not prepare spells, a healer does not have a limited number of spells known. He may cast any spell on the healer spell list of a spell level that he can cast provided he has the daily spells slots to do so. To regain his daily spells, a healer must rest for 8 hours, then spend 15 uninterrupted minutes in quiet meditation, upon which he refills all expended spell slots.

Cantrips: Healers know a number of cantrips, or 0-level spells. These spells are treated like any other spell, except they are not expended when cast and may be used again. As with other spell levels, healers automatically know all cantrips on their spell list.

Channel Life (Su): A healer harnesses raw positive energy to mend wounds and aid allies. A healer may channel life as a swift action to target himself, as a move action to target a single creature, or as a standard action to affect all creatures within range (in any case, it does not provoke attacks of opportunity). This ability has a range of 30 feet. Creatures targeted by this ability are healed 1d8 hit points. The amount healed increases by 1d8 at every odd healer level (to a maximum of 10d8 at 19th level).

A healer can also alternatively use this ability to harm undead. Using this ability to damage a single target requires a ranged touch attack. Creatures damaged by this effect may make a Will saving throw with a DC equal to 10 + Ĺ the healerís level + his Charisma modifier to halve this damage, and may add any channel resistance bonus they possess to the save. A creature cannot be healed or harmed by channel life more than once per round.

This ability is a positive energy effect and cannot heal creatures normally immune to such things (such as constructs and undead). A healer may use this ability at will, but may only use channel life to heal or harm a particular creature a number of times per day equal to 1 + Ĺ his healer level (minimum 1). This ability qualifies as channel positive energy for meeting feat prerequisites (except Versatile Channeler).

Eschew Materials: A healer gains Eschew Materials as a bonus feat at 1st level.

Healerís Protection (Ex): Healers are recognized almost universally as lifesavers and protectors, which can make most reluctant to attack them. A healer never provokes an attack of opportunity when casting a spell (including through spell-trigger and spell-completion items) that heals hit point damage. Any creature who attempts to attack a healer or otherwise undertake an action that could injure or kill him must attempt a Will save with a DC equal to 10 + Ĺ his healer level + his Charisma modifier. On a failure, the action fails, and the creature thereafter may only undertake attacks and actions against the healer that inflict nonlethal damage for 24 hours. Creatures of evil alignment gain a +4 bonus to this saving throw, and undead and outsiders with the evil subtype are immune to this ability. Any creature a healer inflicts lethal damage to or that witnesses him inflicting lethal damage gains immunity to this ability for 24 hours. This is a mind-affecting, sense-dependent effect.

Merciful Combat (Ex): A healerís expertise in biology allows him to incapacitate enemies without permanently injuring them. Any damage he inflicts may be made nonlethal at no expense (including with damaging spells), and he does not take attack penalties to inflict nonlethal damage. A healer may extend this benefit to any creature he summons, calls, or creates through magic.

In addition, at 4th level, a healer may make a debilitating blow against a single enemy as a standard action. This is a melee touch attack if made with a melee weapon and a ranged touch attack if made with a ranged or thrown weapon (this ability has a range of 30 feet or the weaponís first range increment, whichever is shorter). If the attack is successful, he inflicts weapon damage as normal and sickens the target for a number of minutes equal to Ĺ his healer level (minimum 1). A creature who succeeds on a Fortitude save (DC equal to 10 + Ĺ healer level + Wisdom modifier) ignores the sickened effect. A healer may use this ability a number of times per day equal to 3 + Ĺ his class level. Constructs and creatures without internal anatomy (such as oozes and skeletal undead) are immune to this ability.

At 7th level, this ability may instead stagger the target for a number of rounds equal to Ĺ healer level instead of sickening them. At 10th level, it may instead nauseate them for a number of rounds equal to Ĺ healer level. At 13th level, it may instead knock the target unconscious for a number of rounds equal to the healerís Wisdom modifier (minimum 1).

Bonus Feat: At 2nd, 8th, 14th, and 20th level, a healer gains a bonus feat of his choice. He must choose from the following list, and meet all prerequisites for any feat he chooses: any metamagic or item crafting feat, any feat with channel energy as a prerequisite except Versatile Channeler, and any feat that modifies or improves the Heal skill (such as Skill Focus, Signature Skill (Heal), and Self-Sufficient).

Lifesight (Su): A healer is closely attuned to the positive energy that suffuses life. At 2nd level, he gains blindsight with a range of 20 feet, but only to detect living creatures. His blindsight improves by 20 feet at 6th level and every 4 levels thereafter.

Ranged Healing (Su): Expertise with healing magic allows healers to extend the reach of their spells further than most. At 2nd level, when casting a healer spell with a range of touch, a healer may instead cast it with a range of Close (25 feet + 5 feet / 2 class levels).

Font of Energy (Su): A healerís deep connection to positive energy allows him to harness a wellspring of life-giving power to enhance his magic. Starting at 3rd level, a healer gains a font of energy, a pool of points equal to twice his healer level + his Wisdom modifier. As a free action that can be taken whenever he uses an ability or spell that restores hit points to a creature, he may expend any number of points from this pool. All creatures affected by this spell or effect heal an additional number of hit points equal to twice the number of points spent. This pool fully replenishes when the healer meditates to prepare spells.

At 15th level, a healerís font of energy grows more powerful. It now holds points equal to three times his healer level + his Wisdom modifier, and points expended from the pool restore hit points at a rate of three hit points per one point expended.

Advanced Learning: Healers recognize that not every problem can be solved by stitching it up. At 4th level and every 4 levels thereafter, a healer may select an option from the following list. Each option may be selected multiple times.


Expanded Knowledge: Select a spell from any spell list. The healer adds this spell to his spell list as a spell 1 level higher than normal (for example, he may add burning hands, a 1st-level wizard spell, as a 2nd-level healer spell). He must be able to cast the chosen spell to select it.

Exploit Dabbler: The healer gains a single arcanist exploit of his choice, treating his healer level as his arcanist level and using Wisdom in place of Intelligence or Charisma for the exploitís saving throw and other relevant effects. The first time a healer selects this option, he gains an arcane reservoir with a daily number of points equal to 1 + his Charisma modifier (he may not expend points from this reservoir to increase his caster level or saving throw DCs as an arcanist does). He may not select major exploits.

Hexcraft: The healer gains a single witch hex of his choice, treating his healer level as his witch level and using Wisdom in place of Intelligence for determining the hexís saving throw and any other relevant effects. He may not select major or grand hexes.

Merciful Healer: The healer gains a mercy, as the paladin ability of the same name. The mercy adds effects to his channel life ability as if it were lay on hands. The healer treats his healer level as his paladin level to determine what mercies he may select.


Aegis of Health (Su): At 5th level, a healer radiates positive energy that bolsters the bodies of his allies. All allies within Close range of the healer (including himself) gain a bonus to Fortitude saving throws and to Constitution checks to stabilize equal to the healerís Wisdom modifier.

Swift Response (Ex): Twice per day, as an immediate action, a healer of at least 6th level may cast a healer spell on an ally who has just taken damage or failed a saving throw against a hostile effect. He must expend spell slots as normal. He gains an additional use per day of this ability at 13th and 19th level.

Purified Body (Ex): At 9th level, a healer gains immunity to poison and disease.

Will To Endure (Su): At 11th level, a healerís body has become so suffused with restorative power that he can overcome wounds that would normally be fatal. Once per day, if a healer would be killed or reduced to negative hit points, he may cause himself to stabilize at -1 HP as an immediate action and gain fast healing 2 for a number of rounds equal to his healer level.

Perfected Form (Ex): At 17th level, a healer stops aging. He no longer advances in age categories and cannot die of old age, though any penalties from age he has already taken remain. He also gains immunity to magical aging.

Master Healer (Su): At 20th level, a healerís ability to wield positive energy in all its forms has reached its apex. He gains immunity to negative energy damage, negative levels, and critical hits. In addition, he may cast any healer spell that restore hit point damage as a swift action if the spellís normal casting time is 1 round or less.

ElFi
2018-06-19, 03:31 PM
HEALER SPELLS

Healers gain access to the following spells.

0-Level Healer Spells- Create water, detect magic, detect poison, light, mending, purify food and drink, read magic, resistance, stabilize, virtue.

1st-Level Healer Spells- Ant haul, burst of adrenaline, cure light wounds, deathwatch, endure elements, goodberry, polypurpose panacea, protection from alignment, recharge innate magic, remove fear, remove sickness, sanctuary.

2nd-Level Healer Spells- Aid, calm emotions, compassionate ally, cure moderate wounds, delay disease, delay pain, delay poison, gentle repose, life channel, make whole, path of glory, placebo effect, radiation ward, remove paralysis, resist energy, restoration (lesser), shield other.

3rd-Level Healer Spells- Accept affliction, blood biography, cure serious wounds, dispel magic, mantle of calm, protection from energy, remove blindness/deafness, remove curse, remove disease.

4th-Level Healer Spells- Cure critical wounds, freedom of movement, grove of respite, life bubble, make whole (greater), path of glory (greater), remove radioactivity, restoration, spell immunity, stoneskin, true form.

5th-Level Healer Spells- Animate objects, break enchantment, breath of life, contact other plane, cure light wounds (mass), pillar of life, raise dead, scrying, serenity, spell resistance, true seeing.

6th-Level Healer Spells- Antilife shell, contingency, cure moderate wounds (mass), dispel magic (greater), energy immunity, heal, heroesí feast, plane shift, psychic surgery, stone to flesh, undeath to death.

7th-Level Healer Spells- Cure serious wounds (mass), regenerate, repulsion, restoration (greater), resurrection, scrying (greater).

8th-Level Healer Spells- Cure critical wounds (mass), euphoric tranquility, iron body, mass heal, mind blank, spell immunity (greater).

9th-Level Healer Spells- Foresight, freedom, gate, true resurrection.

Anachronity
2018-06-20, 12:01 PM
Actually too good at healing. This class takes the philosophy of 'be balanced by being way too good at one thing', and it amounts to effectively having access to the Heal spell multiple times per day from a very early level. Channel Life alone is way too much.

You've also added permanent sanctuary, the Arcanist's teleportation, the Witch's slumber hex, and blindsight (the ability is actually called 'lifesense', it exists already as a universal monster ability).

I won't argue it's broken balance-wise, because D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder are already fundamentally broken systems in that regard. I will say it is very out-of-place in any game that doesn't let T1 and T2 casters run wild.

rferries
2018-06-20, 04:51 PM
I think you're fine; healing is still a support role so you're really just helping the low-tier characters to shine. The Advanced Learning class feature in particular is a brilliant touch.

I will say I miss the unicorn though :(

ElFi
2018-06-20, 10:13 PM
Actually too good at healing. This class takes the philosophy of 'be balanced by being way too good at one thing', and it amounts to effectively having access to the Heal spell multiple times per day from a very early level. Channel Life alone is way too much.

You've also added permanent sanctuary, the Arcanist's teleportation, the Witch's slumber hex, and blindsight (the ability is actually called 'lifesense', it exists already as a universal monster ability).

I won't argue it's broken balance-wise, because D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder are already fundamentally broken systems in that regard. I will say it is very out-of-place in any game that doesn't let T1 and T2 casters run wild.

Thanks for your critique! I'll try to address it as comprehensively as possible.

How exactly is Channel Life "way too much"? It's better than Channel Energy, sure, but you actually get less uses of it per person per day until higher levels (1+1/2 class level versus 3+Cha modifier), and it only heals marginally more. I'm not certain that the ability to add mercies onto it tips the scales, either, since that's an option also available to the Cleric's Merciful Healer archetype. I'm especially confused by the claim that it mimics the Heal spell. It won't heal nearly as much HP, ever, and it doesn't have the side-effect of cleansing a whole raft of conditions. If it's still powerful despite all that, good, because this is one of the major aspects of the class that is designed to make you a better healer than, say, a Cleric or Shaman, and I also want it to have some in-combat merit, unlike nearly all other healing abilities that aren't third-party.

Healer's Protection is my way of making sure this class isn't completely helpless if it gets cornered. I don't think it's overpowered by any means (and many enemies you'll end up fighting, particularly in the endgame, get big bonuses to resist or are outright immune to it), and it makes up for not being able to wear armor for a class that doesn't get the traditional arcane caster defenses of spells like mirror image and mage armor. Feel free to share any of your particular concerns of why it might be exploitable though.

I'm assuming by "Arcanist's teleportation" you mean dimensional hop? That ability's a lot of fun, but I don't think it's in any way game-breaking. You can't teleport other people and you'll never have a particularly great number of uses per day.

Slumber hex is something I acknowledged the existence of when adding Hexcraft, and yes, it is very powerful. It's also one ability that can very easily be house-banned by a GM who recognizes that power. Not an issue from my perspective.

Thanks for the reminder about lifesense.

This class is intended to be very, very good at healing- it's right there in the name, after all. I'm not sure what the metric is for being "too good" at that role, though I assume you reach it when your healing can outpace the damage enemies can inflict, which I don't think this class is capable of (though I will admit I haven't done much playtesting). As for having much more stamina than the average healer, that's true and definitely intentional. If you're going to have one job, you might as well be really good at that one job.


I think you're fine; healing is still a support role so you're really just helping the low-tier characters to shine. The Advanced Learning class feature in particular is a brilliant touch.

I will say I miss the unicorn though :(

Thanks! Advanced Learning is admittedly something I've cribbed from other Healer fixes I've seen, just expanded a little bit more to account for the greater wealth of options that Pathfinder offers.

The unicorn is a fun touch but I've never been a huge fan of the class's fluff as a goodie-two-shoes divine caster (not to mention that it's very late-entry), so I ultimately decided to cut it out. I may eventually make an archetype that returns the class to its pacifist roots and brings back the unicorn buddy in some form, stay tuned.

Anachronity
2018-06-21, 09:03 AM
If you can heal someone the same level as you from near-dead to full in a single action (which Font of Energy allows you to do), then you've effectively cast the Heal spell. Except that it's even better at low levels because there isn't as much save-or-suck or insane damage numbers flying about.

Not healing a whole bunch of conditions is a fair point.

If Channel Life also counts as Channel Energy for feats, that means you have unlimited use of any feat that allows you to do something other than 'heal or harm' with your channel. In PF that mostly just includes 'Thicket Channel' (which is still fairly strong to have unlimited uses of), but there's a good chance that any PF game allowing homebrew also allows 3.5 material, which could open up DMM and whatnot.

Due to the AoE and the uses being per-person, you could also efficiently heal an army after combat from level 2. Broken? Probably not. But it means that every army now has a Healer (the class, not the role). You could probably say the same for Bard though due to Clarion Call.

ElFi
2018-06-21, 01:27 PM
If you can heal someone the same level as you from near-dead to full in a single action (which Font of Energy allows you to do), then you've effectively cast the Heal spell. Except that it's even better at low levels because there isn't as much save-or-suck or insane damage numbers flying about.

Not healing a whole bunch of conditions is a fair point.

If Channel Life also counts as Channel Energy for feats, that means you have unlimited use of any feat that allows you to do something other than 'heal or harm' with your channel. In PF that mostly just includes 'Thicket Channel' (which is still fairly strong to have unlimited uses of), but there's a good chance that any PF game allowing homebrew also allows 3.5 material, which could open up DMM and whatnot.

Due to the AoE and the uses being per-person, you could also efficiently heal an army after combat from level 2. Broken? Probably not. But it means that every army now has a Healer (the class, not the role). You could probably say the same for Bard though due to Clarion Call.

Good point about Font of Energy. Maybe I should cap the number of points you can spend in a single use? Do you think that would balance it better?

I'd need to trawl through the list of channeling feats to see if there's any that could be potentially broken by this setup- there's a lot of them, and many are hidden in obscure splatbooks and/or expansions that I don't own. It might be worth adding a clause saying that being affected by variant channeling still counts as a daily use of Channel Life even if the creature isn't healed.

I realized as I was writing up the class that it can effectively heal up entire armies singlehandedly. I think that's more of a neat side-effect than something that will actually come up/be useful in gameplay, though. And it would be a relatively simple houserule to remove the per-person channel tracking and just give them a daily pool of 3+1/2 per level per day uses or something.

Anachronity
2018-06-24, 04:49 PM
Good point about Font of Energy. Maybe I should cap the number of points you can spend in a single use? Do you think that would balance it better?Honestly, healing is pretty hard to balance in general. Inefficient heals aren't worth your time, while efficient heals are strong enough that the GM has to resort to near-one-shot levels of damage. At least, that was my experience playing a dedicated healer in a Spheres of Power campaign (where I did reach the point that I could AoE heal everyone to full as a standard action at around 4th level).

That sort of healing needs to be very limited, and that's almost the case here. Maybe increase the pool size, but have the points spent from it be per person healed, rather than per healing effect, so that if you want to heal multiple people to full with one action it becomes very expensive.


I'd need to trawl through the list of channeling feats to see if there's any that could be potentially broken by this setup- there's a lot of them, and many are hidden in obscure splatbooks and/or expansions that I don't own. It might be worth adding a clause saying that being affected by variant channeling still counts as a daily use of Channel Life even if the creature isn't healed.From what I could find on the Pathfinder wiki, it's mostly just Thicket Channel. The others were limited to things like a swift action for +2 deflection for 1 round for you and adjacent allies who are holding a shield. Which is not particularly scary even with unlimited use. On the other hand, Thicket Channel doesn't affect creatures, so applying the daily limit per creature to it wouldn't make sense.


I realized as I was writing up the class that it can effectively heal up entire armies singlehandedly. I think that's more of a neat side-effect than something that will actually come up/be useful in gameplay, though. And it would be a relatively simple houserule to remove the per-person channel tracking and just give them a daily pool of 3+1/2 per level per day uses or something.PF and 3.5 aren't balanced for mass combat in general, which is funny considering their origin. I agree that it's not a tremendous issue.

Overall I will say that on reconsidering the class it seems more balanced than I'd initially thought. Changing the Font to a per-person cost (and increasing the size) and giving more consideration to certain channeling feats is all I recommend.