Thread: HEAL spell?
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Old 05-28-2018, 11:32 PM   #12
Join Date: May 2015
Default Re: HEAL spell?

Originally Posted by Steve Jackson View Post
Comments: There is no HEAL spell in the original game because of concerns that it would make an adventuring party too self-sufficient. I no longer think that is a big problem.
Having played TFT for years with no healing spells, rare fragile healing potions that cost $100 for one dose that heals one point of damage, and having to devise ways to survive years of adventure anyway (making sure you have enough people and a physicker, and/or finding safe places to heal and actually resting), I still feel your original design was best.

It makes injury significant. There are ways to survive and triumph despite no healing spells, and I still find that more interesting and satisfying than the typical alternative of easy healing, which I find tends to make injuries less relevant, and actually tends to up the stakes of combat as players expect to be able to fight people and get hurt but then heal up relatively quickly for no really serious consequence.

I think, since I know that it can be done and that we really enjoyed playing without healing spells, that it offers something valuable to not have them, and so there should at least be a note somewhere that the original game had no healing spells, and so it's an option for GM to consider whether they want it or not.

I also note that if/when given access to healing spells, there's a natural technique of exploiting them. Similar techniques to the ones we used to manage having to heal woulds (e.g. having a large party or staff/servants available) will logically be used to heal the more powerful characters with priority. It will logically apply to NPC opponents as well. So don't count on merely severely wounding an opponent to be a lasting effect, if he can head over to the Wizard's guild, or has wizard friends with apprentices or just willing Drain Strength subjects, because they logically would do that as soon as possible to get the strongest warriors and wizards back to full strength. Again, that removes the element of play of having to deal with wounds, or being able to lastingly wound someone with resources to zap back to full strength. And that also ups the stakes and drives the desire to kill people off once and for all.

Sometimes less is more, and I'm so grateful there was no healing spell in TFT, and would be sad to see one added. Unfortunately, it may be hard to convince people who haven't played a lot without healing magic.

In the (GURPS) games I have run where its healing spells exist, I at least add nerfing rules of various types that greatly limit the rate of healing possible, and/or adding expensive consumed spell components and/or increasing risks the more it's used.

It's a matter of degree, rather than that there must be no healing magic. Do a little math and notice the difference in healing speed between TFT (1 per 2 days while resting all day), or this spell (1 point per 45 minutes wizard-rest, spreadable to apprentices and Drain Strength subjects, i.e. complete instant healing if you have enough fST available). There are many intermediate points where it's not a "zap, you're healed" effect and then it can be not so severe an effect. For example, the mentioned idea that lets you heal up to 2 or 3 points like a physicker. And/or, a spell that would let you heal while doing other things besides lying around (so you could heal while continuing to travel or even adventure). And/or, a spell that lets you heal 1 point per day instead of 1 per two days.

Last edited by Skarg; 05-29-2018 at 12:02 AM. Reason: typo fixes
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