Let's Talk: Healing in RP and Fics

World’s End Tavern: Role-play and Fan Fiction
Healing in-game is simple, you cast a spell and the target is healed for a set amount of HP. But in story and RP? Now that's different.

I haven't had the chance to read any of the novels, comics, or manga (if anyone can point me to the ebooks for sale, I'd love you forever) so I've been going by common sense and my own headcanon for how healing works.

There are obvious limitations:

-Resurrection would probably work only on the recently dead and not fix all their injuries and the more damage to the vitals the less likely the Resurrection would work except for the more powerful casters.

-Limbs cannot be regrown from stumps, only reattached within a certain amount of time and the longer it takes the less use you'll get with that limb.

I imagine that a good deal of anatomical knowledge is required; after all, you aren't reversing the damage done, you're basically forcing the wound to heal at an incredibly fast rate. Which also means there's probably going to be scars left behind, depending on the skill and power of the healer.

Method of healing probably affects how it feels and how much pain is numbed. The Light, I picture as being like a warm tingle that numbs a majority of the pain (unless your an undead, then you poor thing that's going to smart)

Druidic healing seems more about healing nature though given we can in-game heal living player characters it can be used for healing people and animals. I'm no sure how to depict this with my newly rolled Druid.

I'm not too sure how Shaman's heal, since the in-game spell is Healing Surge and you get splashed with water. So how to portray this with my Shaman leaves me confused.
Most people I talk to have their own ideas on how healing works. I have my own, of course, and I base it off a concept I liked that I read in a book (sadly I do not recall which book, it was a long time ago).

Essentially, healing magic (of all kinds) can cure any wound. But it takes a toll from the caster and patient equivalent to the severity of the injury. The more severe the wound, the more taxing it is on the healer to do anything with it. In addition, the patient's body can only take so much of being forcibly knitted back together by whatever source of magic is helping it along.

So basically it would take several sessions of healing to handle really bad injuries and both the caster and the patient would need to get lots of rest in between them, or one of them risks giving up too much energy and dying.

And yes, I apply the concept to every healer I play. The source and method may be different for each class but ultimately the caster still has to channel that energy themselves.

At the end of the day we don't have much in the way of 'official lore sanctioned rules' for healing, so there's plenty of room to put your own spin on it. All you have to do is be able to explain it OOCly to someone else and have them make sense of it really.
If you have any kind of apple device, all of the books are available through the "ibooks" app. I have a few.

As far as healing goes in RP, this is what I have seen;

-quick heals designed for cuts/scrapes/small wounds can be "flash healed" for a quick mend and normally do not drain to much of the healer's strength

-larger heals require a little time to cast and put a significant drain on the caster, sometimes even rendering them unable to continue a fight or at least require some rest, or a potion or something...because "magic"

-resurrections only return the spirit to the body and the level of healing involved is heavily dependent on the healer, and also significantly drains the person doing it. I have even seen circumstances where groups would use multiple people to perform the resurrection to minimize the energy required from each individual.

-Light healing....yeah I think it's easy to understand

-druid healing uses the "essence" of nature and life to heal, think along the lines of Ysera, Malfurion, stuff like when we were healing Mt Hyjal during the zone questing/story line for Cata.

-Shaman healing uses the power of the elements. Water is the element which brings life. Healing rain, tidal surge etc....
I rarely RP characters who can heal - but the way I treat it in character backstories has it where healers can modulate what is healed. For example, my tauren warrior was a gladiatorial slave for the Steamwheedle Cartel - he would suffer wounds in battle and after would be treated just enough to close the wounds or make the wound go from irreparable/fatal to 'can heal naturally' - as such he is left with -loads- of scarification.

Though I rarely RP in game anymore - and rarely have I ever RP fought - when I was healed in game during a RP, if it was after a battle, my character's first thoughts were 'I need food'. Based it off the idea that, the body's healing process is being sped up, so large amounts of your body's energy are used, so food.

So even a paper cut that would be healed with a flick of the wrist might be cause for a quick snack.
03/15/2015 10:09 PMPosted by Majustu
There are obvious limitations:

-Resurrection would probably work only on the recently dead and not fix all their injuries and the more damage to the vitals the less likely the Resurrection would work except for the more powerful casters.

-Limbs cannot be regrown from stumps, only reattached within a certain amount of time and the longer it takes the less use you'll get with that limb.


"Obvious", but not universal. I've known roleplayers to take various stances here, bring characters back long after death, and regain limbs lost in other stories. Healing is, most often, whatever someone wants it to be, whatever suits the story at the time. Occasionally, you have regrets, or get bored of something. The limits of healing in warcraft are equally vague, as some characters are brought back after being dismembered and scattered, while others are in need of mercy-killings from injuries much less severe.

That said, I do take pretty stiff stance on what my character is capable of. I treat Resurrection basically like resuscitation, restarting the heart before brain death occurs, while the body is still capable of 'accepting' a spirit. At a certain point, this cannot be done, the spirit won't stick, and the only way to shove it back in there is with necromancy. The dark magic is essentially like glue that keeps someone trapped in a body, unable to cross over.

Aurric also cannot fix what isn't there. Limbs, eyes, internal organs -- if they're gone or too damaged, they're not coming back. The most Aurric can do is reattach, if the sever is clean enough, or in rare cases, transplant. He's a pretty phenomenal healer though, and has managed such miracles as regenerating third degree burns, and saving the life of someone who took a bullet to the head. Nothing that hospital staff haven't managed under the right conditions.

In my opinion, a healer also cannot fix gangrene. There are times something can't be healed, and has to be amputated. Aurric has done a lot of work in triage camps, clinics, and hospitals, and it can be messy work. There's a lot more to being a healer than just your hands glowing.

I've encountered a lot of different rules, made by players who want to add some tension and texture to the idea of healing. Gonna point to some of my favorites, which got to be pretty popular around Wyrmrest Accord back in 2010-2011, and still influence a handful of players:

http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/2016272746

Some of the concepts have stuck more than others, but it's still a cool read.
This is an interesting topic and I'm glad you brought this up. One of my major pet peeves is when either myself or someone else begins to roleplay that their character is physically injured and someone with a healing spec casts a heal and is then like "there you go, all better now!"

One of the more interesting RP scenarios I've been in recently is when one of my guild members was poisoned by a criminal gang. We brought him back to our base and began to take care of him, but when they looked to me for healing poison I simply linked the spell Purify in party chat (which we use for OOC chat during events) and explained to them that I can only remove harmful magics and disease, but not poison! It really brought out some interesting plot and character development after that!

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