I’ve begun to dislike matches were a support is present. Miko and Alani annoy me more than the others, but in general I don’t like playing against them and don’t like the “help” they give when on my team.
Before I sound like a complete crazy person, here’s where my logic is coming from:
There are 2 ways to heal available to all characters regardless of loadout and team comp.
Supply stations and returning to base. I don’t know the precise numbers on how fast a supply station heals you but it’s safe to say it heals you slowly. And an estimate for returning to base is 5 seconds teleporting and then 10-15 seconds sprinting back to the fight. Both have pros and cons. Supply station keeps you closer to the fight but you are a sitting duck and again it heals you slowly. Returning to base is a bit like dying, at least in the sense when you kill an enemy player your team can push the number advantage the team temporarily has. Not to mention you can’t choose to stop returning to base (once past the initial teleport) to quickly support the team like you potentially can from the supply station.
I like the gameplay scenarios that arise from these 2 ways of healing.
If I kill you but have return to base after than it’s not as big a victory as it could be otherwise as both teams are down a man, the team that scored the kill is better off because of the exp gain and not having to wait for the respawn timer. If I kill you but instead go to a supply station then I’m still near the fight but a lot of the time the enemy I killed would have respawned and come back to the fight faster than I am being healed and I’m at risk at the time.
I’m making a big deal about healing after a fight because if you win the fight but are wounded, then you are easy pickings for the enemy team.
I think this is a great thing. The state you are in after a fight directly impacting the next is good. How much health do you have? What skills are on cooldown? etc.
Then there is the team work. If I get the kill but am weak, then the enemy player can tell his team that I’m weak and to quickly pounce while they have the chance. Conversely I can tell my team that I’m weak and to come help.
Both examples spark interesting confrontations.
My annoyance starts when, for whatever reason, my team calls out that an enemy player is low health and to engage. I then engage only to find out they had a Miko/Alani/support character in general, and the low health player is practically full health. In most situations I’ve run into, the time between my team calling out a weak player and myself discovering they are full health is 5 seconds, give or take.
Compared to using a supply station and returning to base, 5 seconds is nothing. To make matters worse Miko/Alani didn’t even need to use a skill to accomplish the heal so you can’t always try and take advantage of a skill being on cooldown.
My opinion is that supply stations and returning to base is a “good” amount of time needed to return to full health with appropriate pros and cons for the player healing, with potentially interesting gameplay options available to the opposing team in response to a player disengaging to heal.
I feel support characters screw with the above.
Firstly why does “support” apparently always mean “healer”?
I’m not speaking to a support characters ability to “support” mid-combat, but more supports characters ability to heal in-between fights.
I acknowledge that decreasing support characters ability to heal in-between fights would severely compromise their effectiveness IN the fight.
So, some suggestions:
Miko: Change heal beam to “buff” beam. Could be attack speed increase, could be cooldown reduction, could be damage resistance. Play around with it. I personally like the idea of the damage resistance, still allows miko to follow someone around and buff them like now, but it’s finite. Miko cannot infinitely heal them anymore, he could allow them to take a lot more damage, but enough damage would still kill the buff recipient. This leaves Biosynthesis as his heal and I think 260-350 health over 5 seconds is enough to be meaningful during or after fight without removing the game play choice of how to return to full health (supply station, base, waiting for biosynthesis again, passive health regen) and counter-play options available to the other team.
Ambra: I really like that her heal sacrifices her own health to do so. If you can’t kill the target she’s healing because she’s healing them, then you can target the now-weak Ambra. A change to sunspot is instead of healing allies, a portion of damage taken by friendly players linked to a sunspot is now dealt to the sunspot instead.
Kleese: I’m completely ok with Kleese having a powerful “heal” that is restricted to shields, maybe even buff it so shielded characters can tank simply by standing near energy rifts. The enemy team can still deal with it by just targeting the energy rifts before targeting the tanky shield character. I would change his heal to be more in line with a supply station. It would be a severe nerf, but I don’t see how having a mobile supply station that’s harder to destroy following the team around is a bad thing (again I think supply stations themselves are working fine).
Reyna: I would just get rid of the heal helix. You could buff the over-shield in its place, but I think using the over-shield as a temporary increase to a characters effective health to allow them to either secure the kill or escape with their life is good enough already.
I will freely admit I don’t have ideas that I think are good/acceptable for Alani. I just think her ability to heal a near death ally to full/near-full health is ridiculous.
For the most part my ideas are not trying to nerf support characters. I’m trying to remove support characters ability to be a medic, but replace it with equal amounts of SUPPORTing potential.