Stormblood Live Letter: Part I (Healer Overview)

So…how about that Live Letter?

Let’s face it, even if you aren’t super happy with some of the changes (looking at you PvP, RIP), it was a FANTASTIC look into what we should be expecting from Stormblood, and if you didn’t gasp at least a few times during the Job Action Video (SUMMONER PLS), you need your gaming card revoked.  And if you haven’t seen it yet WHAT ARE YOU DOING GO NOW PLEASE

While we didn’t get a TON of information specifically about healers, there were some big changes to the battle system that will affect healers greatly.  And let me just say this: if the changes in the Live Letter are going to be implemented the way I hope they are, ALL healers are going to be amazing and the role itself got a lot of love.

So let’s talk specifics: as far as Scholar and Astrologian goes, the team had mentioned that their play styles will remain mostly similar.  This didn’t surprise me for Astrologian, but it DID surprise me for Scholar, which I was expecting to be nerfed heavily.  That doesn’t mean it won’t still be in certain ways, but it seems as if they are balancing by way of addition, rather than subtraction.

By that I mean the odd one out at the moment, White Mage, is likely getting some much needed raid utility.  While they didn’t go into much detail about White Mage, there were definitely some abilities in both the LL and the Benchmark that would seem to be pushing it in that direction, while still keeping it true to the job.  That can only be a good thing.

Now that we’re digesting all of this information, what do we really know about the state of Stormblood healers?

White Mage

White Mage is definitely getting Stone IV — but what’s interesting is that they’re streamlining the spells so that once you get Stone IV, you’ll no longer need Stone I-III, saving space on your hotbar.  Whether or not they’ll incorporate Stone I’s heavy into the equation remains to be seen, but I don’t particularly mind either way, seeing as Heavy, while having quite a bit of use in early HW raid content, might NOT be necessary in SB content.

There was also an ability showcased called “Rescue,” and while everyone in the chat went “HAR HAR WHAT A TROLL ABILITY,” the reality is that this ability is going to be FANTASTIC if used correctly.  This ability isn’t specific to WHM, but rather part of a pool of healer-specific abilities, but they did show it in the Job Action trailer with a WHM using it.  While the obvious use would be to pull an ally out of danger, I immediately thought of “what if you have aggro and a tank doesn’t notice?”  Pull him to the mobs. “What if there’s a DPS that needs to handle a mechanic next to you but can’t get there fast enough.”  GET OVER HERE.  “What if a party member is out of range for a cast and isn’t coming close enough.”  C’MERE BUD.  There’s just so many uses for this I could spit.

Speaking of cross-role abilities, I DID think it was strange to see Divine Seal in there, because that seems like a direct nerf to the job.  But honestly, having it there makes me think that SB content will require heavier healing from ALL healers, meaning that there will be fights where it will be necessary for more than one healer to have it.  Still, changing Divine Seal to a cross-role skill does seem a little odd, and I hope they give WHM something in it’s kit to make up for it losing that unique skill.

There were a few other really pretty looking abilities that MIGHT have simply been heals, but I highly doubt that they aren’t aware of the imbalance with healers, and I seriously hope SB brings some awesome stuff for WHM mains.

Scholar

THE TETHER.  I AM SO EXCITE ABOUT THE TETHER.

Why?  This means less micromanaging your fairy, and while in a lot of ways this was part of the fun of the class (read: challenge), it would be incredibly useful if it was a boosted target heal, and not just “Okay Eos, focus on this dude now,” because we’re already able to do that.  Either way, it’s great to feel like you have a bit more control without having to mess around with too many macros, as Scholar is still the only healer that makes macros pretty mandatory for raiding, especially if you’re a controller user like me.

There was also some crazy epic hacker ability that I’d guess would be something like Scan from FF’s past, exposing specific hidden weaknesses in an enemy.  I can’t necessarily wrap my head around WHAT that would be (I doubt it would be some kind of Vuln Up like Ninja’s Trick Attack), but that’s just my best guess from seeing it.  Still, it looked VERY cool.

Scholar also got what looks to be Broil II, so keep the spam alive!

Astrologian

WOW — Astrologian currently has some of the most gorgeous looking effects in the game, and they really doubled down on that with these abilities.  I almost kind of don’t care what they do, they look so incredibly gorgeous that I’ll use all of them even if they’re essentially the Magikarp Splash of FFXIV.

In all seriousness though, it looks like AST will have more card micromanaging, which isn’t a bad thing, but I’m curious to see how it will play out.  At one point, the AST seems to chain cast cards, or cast specific spells depending on what card they drew.  No matter what, it seems the system is being expanded upon, which will be exciting to see.

Gravity II, or something similar to it, also looks like it’s being added to the repertoire.

What I’m mostly excited about was the circle AoE that the AST placed on the ground that seemed to trigger the massive almost LB looking ability at the end.  I’d like to think that it’s almost like a MCH’s Wildfire, where after a certain amount of time, a heal is cast that’s potency is increased by the amount of damage done to ally’s within the circle.  This would give a very VERY interesting dimension to AST that would almost be a more tactical, SCH like ability.  Regardless, I hope I’m right, because I could see something like that being incredibly useful.

This is just a quick summary of my thoughts on the Job Actions for healers, but next I’ll be talking about the controversial change to Cleric Stance, the removal of Accuracy, and a heck of a lot more.  Please look forward to it!

AND OMG STORMBLOOD HYPE IS REAL AMIRITE

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