Thursday, December 10, 2015

Clerics are Not Healbots

awkward thing i dealt with in my history of playing Grognards. not only is Arcane and Divine a Pointless divide for magic that really does nothing but keep wizards in robes. a design made to preserve an outdated aesthetic. and to prevent wizards from learning healing spells, despite the fact the necromancer has access to them as does any wizard who doesn't neglect necromancy.

i mean, the line has been blurred on casters for like 2 decades. we have arcane classes that can cast healing spells and wear armor, but they apparently have to pay a tax for it. but really, a divine caster has an easier time accessing the arcane spell effects they desire.

"but clerics aren't supposed to cast fireball? that is the sorcerers job." lets look at this, the cleric who follows the correct pointless behavioral restrictions, can pick up a domain that gives them blatant access to fireball. and clerics don't pay for their domains, they get them for being a cleric. why couldn't a wizard who focused on necromancy or even transmutation use their gifts to heal others? if it is balanced for one one spell list, it should be fine for another at the exact same level range

but that is just a side point.

clerics have access to a lot of potent offensive natured spells from domains, and well, they have access to a lot of personal range combat enhancement spells they can only cast on themselves, and well, their best buffs are the ones they can only cast on themelves.

lets see what else the cleric gets that isn't healing related, they get easy access to heavy armor proficiency, if they don't already have it, they get shield proficiency, rogue level attack bonus progression, a decent hit die, decent saving throws in most editions, especially a ridiculous will, and depending on the set of behavioral restrictions they choose to follow, access to a large variety of extremely potent martial and even exotic weapons. with access to many personal range buffs that greatly enhance their ability to fight on the front lines, access to all these other frontline boons, and hell, a decent amount of domains that could offer anything from a potent offensive spell to an extra feat or few. why are we assuming a Cleric's job is to stand back and heal? i think with what the toolkit provides them, that they are clearly intended to take a proactive role in combat rather than a reactive one as a walking sentient box of bandaids.

and hell, even if you wanted a ranged cleric, cleric domains offer access to potent offensive spells like fireball, lightning bolt, or hell, in one edition, reserve feats or whatever, can grant them a mini eldritch blast. i doubt clerics were intended to sit in the back and heal, they are very much proactive and offensive.

here is a common spell that gets thrown around; Bless, what does it do? freaking bonus to attack rolls. what do you do with an extra 5% chance to hit, you smash things. in fact, a Cleric has a better chance of mitigating future damage by being offensive than they do by trying to heal others. there is not a single healing spell that will heal a downed ally for a high enough amount of HP for them to still fight after being smacked by the free attack a level appropriate enemy makes against them when they stand themselves up to ignore the prone penalties.

another thing.

we have so many caster classes that can access healing spells and armor. why do we have to keep the vision of wizards in robes? i know it has mythological precedent, but honestly, if a wizard invests the time learning to wear plate, we shouldn't tack on additional penalties because the wizard chose to wear plate, proficiency is plenty a requirement. hell, there was an anime with a wizard whose body was a suit of plate. yeah, his soul was bound to a suit of heavy armor.

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