~~Faithborn's Guide to Space Healing~~
__________Many officers choose to go either damage or crowd control in their path to success in pvp. Without me however, your chances of success are slim to none. At best I am an impenetrable fortress that keeps the opponents torpedoes from incinerating you in moments. At worst I am that precious time that you need to incinerate your opponents. I cannot do it alone however; treat me well and you have an ally for life, neglect me and I will let you die with impunity. Who am I? No, I'm not a healer...I'm your health bar. Stop treating me like I'm a second rate citizen.
__________Healing, like DPS and CC abilities, is essential to your survival and success in pvp. Far too often is healing neglected in pvp. Properly practiced, healing provides an almost invulnerable defense against enemy attacks. From reducing the damage an opponent takes by great amounts and providing the health buffer necessary to survive even the hardiest of spikes, healers can easily turn the tide of a battle. This guide goes over some of the basics of healing, explains skill choices, and dabbles in a few of the more advanced tactics.
``````````Faithborn's Guide to Space Healing``````````
Part 1 - The Basics
I. - Why Healing is Important:
__________Healing is on the opposite side of the coin from damage. Healing balances against DPS to determine whether or a player lives or dies in combat. Without healing, even small amounts of damage would prove to be lethal over time. That is where healing comes in. Healing works directly against damage to ensure that players survive against damage. It is often impossible to keep a team at one hundred percent the entire match, but contrary to popular belief that is not the goal of a healer. Healers work to keep their team alive long enough to kill the team's opponents. In other words, healing buys your team enough time to enable your team to kill your opponents' team.
II. - Healing skills
Auxiliary Power to Structural- System: Auxiliary Power. Auxiliary Power to the Structural Integrity Field delivers and instant hull heal, while providing good damage resistance over the duration. Increases in effectiveness based on current auxiliary power level.
Engineering Team - System: Crew. Engineering Team delivers a good instant hull heal and grants an engineering skill buff for your own ship or ally. Also repairs subsystem damage and engineering debuffs for the duration.
Hazard Emitters - System: Hazard. Hazard Emitters provides a large hull heal over time, a small damage resistance buff over the duration, and will cleanse the ship of hazard debuffs over duration. Increases in effectiveness based on current auxiliary power level.
Attack Pattern Delta - System: Maneuvers. Attack Pattern Delta targets your own or an allied ship granting them a damage resistance buff. Any ship that attacks the target will receive a damage resistance and stealth debuff.
Starship Dampening Field - System: Deflector Field. Starship Dampening Field projects a shield around your ship reducing the damage to you and nearby allies recieve from incomming energy weapon fire. Increases in effectiveness based on current auxiliary power level.
Extend Shields - System: Shields. Extend Shields regenerates the shields of the target ally and improves their damage resistance. Increases in effectiveness based on current shield power level.
Science team - System: Crew. Science Team repairs shield damage and grants a science debuff for your own ship or an ally. Also removes science debuffs for the duration.
Transfer Shield Strength - System: Deflector Field. Transfer Shield Strength transfers power from the deflector field to provide a large shield heal over time and a small shield damage resistance buff over duration. Increases in effectiveness based on current auxiliary power level.
III. - Active and Passive healing.
Active healing - refers to using health boosts to directly mitigate an opponent's damage. Active healing prevents damage in a 1:1 ratio meaning that for every point of healing used, the opponent must deal that much more to kill a target. Active healing requires a quick reflex and good judgment to determine which party member needs healing and when they need it. As an opponent deals damage the healer must be ready to heal the damage quickly or risk the teammate dying from taking too much damage. Active healing requires a quick reflex but less skill than passive healing, due to the reactionary nature of active healing. Misthrowing an Active heal is dangerous because it can possibly give your opponents a window of opportunity large enough to spike out a kill.
Passive healing - refers to using damage resistances to mitigate an opponents damage. Resistance stacking enables targets to take significantly higher amounts of damage than would be possible with just active healing. Passive healing requires knowledge of who the opponents are attacking. Passive heals require more skill to use than active heals because they should be used proactively - meaning that they should be used as the target starts to take damage or before. A passive heal on a teammate that is not receiving damage is worthless and should be used when you know the target is taking damage.
IV. - Self Defense
__________Self Defense is a very important part of playing a healer. You cannot heal anyone if you are dead, so it is very important to stay alive as long as possible while healing as much as possibe. The main problem with self defense skills is that the more you take, the less space you have available for skills that heal and protect your allies. If you dedicate too little to self defense you become susceptible to enemy fire, but if you dedicate too much to self defense your ability to support the team becomes diminished. additionally if you stack too much defense then the enemy will be less inclined to attack you and will instead aim for easier to kill targets, which you cannot support due to bringing too many self defense skills.
__________It is important to find a happy medium between self defense and team support. Cruisers can easily field a few self defense skills inside the ensign and lieutenant engineering slots without crowding out the most powerful heals (engineering team 3 and extend shields). Science vessels on the other hand, will find that they must make a hard choice between self defense, healing abilities, and offensive debuffs. Generally speaking, most higher level versions of self-targeted skills tend to be overshadowed by higher level versions of skills that can target allies.
If you should find yourself under constant focus fire, These skills can help your survivability by large amounts. They are not as flexible as skills that can target allies and as a result are generally viewed as less powerful when in a proper group.
Hull healing and resistance boosts - self only
Shield healing and resistance boosts - self only
V. - Captain Skills
__________Regardless of career, all captains need to properly outfit themselves with the best equipment that they can use in order to maximize their builds. Proper console, deflector, and skill selection can make or break the captain. because of the ambiguity of using bridge officer skill (the clickable abilities) and the captain skills (the ones you train), bridge officer skills will be called abilities for this section.
__________All abilities are strengthened by investing in three captain skills; a tier one skill, a tier two skill, and a tier three through tier five skill. To find what skills benefit a certain ability, hit "P" while in space (default power bar list tray) and click on the ability to bring up the description on it. Scroll all the way down to find text like this:
VI. - Deflector Dish & Consoles
__________Deflector dishes and consoles serve to further boost the efficacy of abilities. Deflector dishes exist to boost the power levels of science skill. Consoles can provide a variety of effects such as increased armor, increased crew survivability, and supplimentary boosts to captain skills. When choosing consoles and deflector dishes, look for consoles with attributes that increase the potency of your abilities. Avoid consoles and deflector dishes that do not benefit your build or provide a reasonable boost to other performance, instead take consoles and skills that will have an effect on your ability to play.
VII. - Noteworthy Consoles
VIII. - Sample builds
__________The following are builds that have been painstakingly crafted with extreme care over the course of gameplay. They are all highly refined and each one contains a bit of wisdom expressed by the creator. Included are both skill layouts, and a few paragraphs on how to play the builds. If you are unsure about where to start with a build for your ship, consider reading into these builds. The creators have put a bit of their heart and soul into their work, all of them are high quality.
Part 2 - Tactics
I. - Healing
__________It is important to know when to heal and when not to heal a target. Before throwing the target a heal, ask the following questions; Will the target survive without a heal? If I heal this target, will someone else die because they did not receive a heal? Will this heal be enough to keep the target alive? These questions are very prudent to a healer. As a healer it is your job to keep the team alive, not at 100% hull and shields. While it is important to keep your teammates health high, sometimes it is simply not possible. You will need to prioritize who receives healing and who can go without it in the middle of a battle.
__________Generally speaking, your primary healing targets should be those targets that are in immediate threat of being killed. Most likely they will be the target of most of the enemys' firepower. Watch the opponents as they come in, do a quick tab cycle and look at the target's target window to see who they are targeting. If a group of opponents are all targeting the same person then they will most likely be focusing their fire on that target. Be quick, if you see them open fire throw a HoT skill on their target as quickly as possible to blunt the damage. Apply heals as necessary to keep them alive. As the combat progresses the enemy will begin to change their targets multiple times. This is where the job gets tricky. You need to keep watching the enemy's dps, tabbing through targets repeatedly to figure out who they are attacking. Watch your team's health bar, Read signals that your opponents are giving you, and above all else - stay calm.
__________After you have played for a short time, check the score boards to figure out who is doing the most damage on the opponents' team. Watch these people intently, figure out who they are attacking, whether or not they like to switch targets often, how much spike damage potential they have, and try to figure out what they will do next. If you can keep up with them then you will have the advantage. If you can stay one step ahead of them then you can exploit that advantage by giving your team even better survivability.
IV. - Its a Team Job
__________It is extremely important to be in a team during a pvp match. While a premade team is often substantially more coordinated than a pug team, either will do for the purpose of this portion of the guide though. If you are going into a match alone, the first thing you need to do upon entering is group your team. If there is not a team going, right click everyone and invite them to your team. If there is a team already started, right click one of them and request to join them. nine times out of ten the other players will either accept the invite or accept you into the team. The other ten percent severely hurts the ability of the team to win.
Teaming has three purposes:
Part 3 - Conclusion
__________I often get mail and comments asking me how I heal people so well. The key is to practice, practice, practice. On the flip side, I'm also very blunt. If you need help just send a mail to me or ask it on the forums. Remember that this guide is only a starting point, the real trials only begin when you get onto the battlefield and face you opponents. Who knows, maybe it will even be me! If your team continues to get destroyed by something, stop for a moment and reflect on what happened and then adapt your stratagy to overcome it. Build your friends lists with people you like to play with and have talent, get to know how your friends play, build stratagies together and above all else... Have fun.
~@faithborn, Leader of The Spanish Inquisition.
and now a special word from my dear friend Ambience in regards to keybinding, a very useful and beneficial couple of lines that will help many healers;
ok you can post now. I'll see if I can't pester Snix to make this one a sticky
I'm about half way through. It's very interesting and as I am trying to get back to my Fed character a bit more with a focus on healing I'm hoping to learn something. I've been playing too long tonight though and my eyes are going crossed >_< so I'll have to finish up during maint in the morning. Thanks for the new guide.
Shouldn't it be "signal" instead of "signel"?
Maybe a better word would be "tell", IIRC correctly, that is used as a term among card players (Poker, Baccarat ). Some people have habits that "tell" wether they have good cards or are bluffing, and an experienced players knows how to look out for them.
Also - any advice on using Dampening Field or Attack Pattern Delta? Dampening Field means resistances for everyone in the radius, and Attack Pattern Delta gives damage resistances to your ally.
DF passive, APD active?
Mustrum "Not a native English speaker or a Poker/Baccarat player, but I saw Casino Royale" Ridcully
I love your guide, maybe more cruisers will actually build for healing instead of just pew pew and RSP. There is one thing I'm curious about though, recommendations for consoles, specifically engineering ones. With HE, AtSIF and TSS being aux dependent, is it recommended to just slot +aux consoles, or are there merits to still using a couple of eps consoles to switch power levels?
I think you should go a little more in depth into the powers, especially since they have changed. Cooldowns and durations with exact numbers would be a great addition. Also whether they can be self targeted or team only, since again, they have changed.
You also allude to self-healing powers but you say absolutely nothing about them. Of course I think the only self heal power is EPtS, everything else is dual use now, while ES is still team only.
And since its in your build and has been changed, you should probably make a note about attack pattern delta since it is now a resistance buff power.
Additionally, I'd also suggest noting the availability of the relevant rank 3 powers, such as how some are trainable by engineering or science captains, and others are found on rare BOs only. TSS 3, Aux to SIF 3, and APD 3 (for those escorts that want to play support) are found on BOs only.
On the "FOTM" build specifically, I question why you have any points in Science and Tactical team, since you don't use them at all. You could easily siphon those points out and put them somewhere more useful, like say deflectors and deflector field seeing as you don't have anything in those skills yet you are using transfer shield strength. I'd also put points into ground, or at least leave some left over, but for those who don't want to be versatile I guess that is understandable.
I also wouldn't put so many ranks into heavy and exploration cruiser myself, since you only get 25% of those skills towards the star cruiser. You put in 600 points into heavy cruiser for 2% on your star cruiser. One rank of star cruiser for 500 points gives 10%, but obviously you can't do that without sacrificing in aux performance or hull repair.
But those last 600 points in HC could be better spent on say a single rank in deflectors and deflector field for 18% to TSS, which probably adds up to more survivability in your star cruiser (and your team) than the tiny buff from heavy cruiser skills.
You're also missing your commander level engineering power. I would guess you have Aux to SIF 3, but it is missing in the build you posted (since its not even in the builder for whatever reason), so you should note or fix that.
And finally you probably want to get a good science ship build posted too, though I imagine you probably want submissions for that since you may not play it yourself.
On another note for ppl who target friendlys using group interface with mouse have you found it to be more of a hazzle then last patch or is it just me?
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