Magical healing vs surgical healing on the battlefield

If I were to play a pure medic on the battlefield, would it be worth taking both physick and heal spells? or should I focus on one or the other?
For roleplay reasons I am taking Business rather than mana site or herb garden.

If you think you can get the materials to power both then yes, you will be relying on your group to help I suspect, and may find you need mage blood potions to restore manna on the battlefield or crystal manna as well as herbs to be truly effective.

Also if you want to use the spells you’re limited to mage armour which makes you relatively squishy, so you will survive better if you’re part of a group, but with that build and the supplies for it most groups would be delighted to have you, and very happy to protect your back.

I have both although I don’t go to battle every time (OOC injury) I tend to stick with a specific highborn front line group, and I have used both skills and even just basic chirurgeon as that’s ‘free’ if there is enough time, and in return they provide a nice wall of steel between me and the bad guys!

As a battlefield medic, I’d say that there are really three types of healer; mages, physicks, and heroic healers. Each has its place, especially on the battlefield.

Mages have limited resources, but heal people quickly. 30 seconds to fully Heal on the field is very useful, as are spells like Purify and Restore Limb. Getting them behind the front line for thirty seconds is often easy enough. You can also swift-cast to get it done in a couple of seconds, useful when there is no ‘front line’ to hide behind. Best of all, mages get other spells for extra flexibility.

A physick also has limited resources, but many people carry some herbs and you can apply those within the thirty seconds. Never met a soldier carrying spare mana crystals to give to a mage. The problem is that one mana is flexible; it can heal, restore limbs, or dispel poison; while each physick effect requires a different herb. Run out of true vervain and there is no more full healing, run out of cerulean mazzarine and you can’t repair cleave. Where the physick shines is surgery though; you can heal (most) traumatic wounds and you can fully heal someone after the battle. Surgery is fun, if not for the squeamish.

The oft-forgotten healer is the one with hero points. A couple of seconds to shout ‘rub some dirt in it, you sissy’ and you can stabilise them or get them back into the fight. Hero points are even more of a limited resource than mana, but most front-line warriors can afford a single point to spend on Stay With Me or Get It Together in addition to the rest of their skills.

For my part, I think Physick is the best healing skill. That’s it though; a physick heals and can maybe expand into potion-making, but it’s not a battlefield skill in the same way that heroic or magical healing are off-shoots of more versatile skill-trees which lend themselves to combat. Magic also gets you into the Conclave if I recall correctly, so lots of fun roleplaying opportunities.

It all depends on your character in the end.


Obviously there is lots of time to change my mind, but currently I have got it set up as all my exp into extra mana, so I have ten, and will try and buy the magic wand that gives me access to heal, then use my exp from events to build up the repatoir of spells, and maybe chierugeon also
Might start slow, but my thinking is extra mana is hard to pick up 1 exp at a time, while spells and chierugion are all only 1 exp. :slight_smile:

Personally I’d recommend buying less Extra Mana and taking Restore Limb, Chirurgeon and Physick, if I was certain I had a source for a Heal wand - then taking a herb garden, getting a few mageblood potions made and then using the rest of my herbs on physicking. If I wanted to roleplay a purely magical healer, I’d accomplish that by putting my Physick roleplay over towards the hearth magic / crystal woo end rather than the sewing-people-up end.

The reason I’d recommend that is that I don’t like turning up to a problem as a specialist in that sort of problem and learning that no, actually I can’t help because I didn’t take a particular skill. Also mageblood potions trade two herbs for two personal mana,which is probably a worthwhile trade.

I will take them eventually, for sure!
I just figured that… if at a later date I wanted the third extra mana, that is a whole year and a bit worth of saving for one upgrade. while this way round, every time I get an EXP I get to spend it on a spell immediately, feels like levelling up :slight_smile:

Part of the reason I would advise against it, is that the reluctance over saving for 4/5 events for a single extra mana might be because it isn’t worth it. if you start a build with less mana and more other things yes you might never end up getting to 7 mana, because it never seems worth it. However, that is probably preferable to starting with a raft of things missing from your build and then realizing other things which look fun. But you have three years to wait before you have all the skills you need.

I think with all the * skills they will slowly trend towards not being worth it. (Ritual lore might be the exception.)

Also Physik is exactly as long a wait, and far more worth it. Dropping down to 5 mana, once again saves you a year and a bit wait but for a skill which you will get far more use out of.
Your next mana is then only a year wait (Although even then there are skills that might come first), and by the time you have that you can more accurately evaluate whether that 7th mana is actually worth it.

A magician without mana is useless as a healer.

A Physick without herbs can still do al this on a battlefield:

  • Treat a Traumatic Wound with 2 min of roleplay.
  • Fix a damaged limb with 2 min of roleplay.
  • Take someone from 0 to 1 Hits with 30s of roleplay.
    When I played a Physick I would default to 2 minute limb fixes if I had time to rotate the casualty out of the line.

Chirugeon is a fantastic pick for a healer mage, as for 1 XP it gives you a no-cost way to pick people up from bleeding. So you can be dedicated to healing, even if you run out of mana.