Supports (Not Healers)

Why is it that there are such amazing supports in this game but they’re really just healers? Reyna’s ablet to invent her own health (overshields) and Kleese is a weird but awesome territorial alternative healer, and that’s really cool. But besides Reyna’s one mutation and Alani’s haste, there is so little buffing. Buffing is my favorite part of games. Some people resent the role, but if I deal no damage but everyone else’s are sky high, I feel better than if just I had sky high damage. I was hoping Alani would have a lil more, and while 30% damage reduction is cool and all, it’s not an integral part of her kit. So far there’s been a whole lot of debuffing, but I’d rather see more abilities to do the opposite. With Wound, hopefully they’ll be more focus on this, but I still doubt it. Who knows though? Maybe the UPR won’t be a medic, as that’s not their style, but maybe he’ll be able to place or shoot damage buffs or something. Or maybe the weird, scary Jennerit will be able to inject you with a speed boost. I can’t wait for the new characters, but I really want something that I feel is missing in this game. Pendles seems cool, but he just seems like Deande found a snake, and then Mellka taught him how to use his poison. Less overlap and redundancy, more brand new ideas for the game.


Doesn’t Reyna have a damage buff or two it her kit? I don’t play her, but I thought she might. You mention a mutation, but I thought it came standard somewhere.

Also, what sorts of buffs were you thinking?

Lots of toons have team speed buffs in their kit somewhere, just wondering what you were thinking. :slight_smile:

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Reyna has The Best Defense at Helix Level 4 (unlocks at Character Level 7 iirc), which gives a +16% Damage Amplification along with the Shield Boost. Although neat on paper, it is almost never used because Vital Protocol (+250HP Heal with Shield Boost) is the better choice.

I think the OP would like a dedicated buff/debuff class, like a Bard in D&D :wink:
And while I like the idea a lot, I just don’t see it happening. Having access to several Buffs and/or Debuffs would require the character to be balanced with a strategic counterpoint, probably abysmal low damage output and/or low survivability. Which would create a niche utility character that is rarely used.

Kleese and Reyna are the closest thing to ‘true’ support characters we got so far (arguably, Ambra could be counted, I just excluded her because she actually heals).

Although I believe it to be possible we might see another ‘outside-the-box’ support (meaning no straight healer) with the coming DLC characters.


That is a good point, they’d probably either be too strong or way too weak. But realistically, it could be something as skill cooldown. There are a few different things that with a team as inventive as this one, they could find a way to make a character just a more buff heavy Reyna type character. Because realistically, Reyna’s output is negligible at best. So having weak damage would be fine. And Alani’s speed and Kleese’s generally low survivability show a precedence for bad base stats. Even if its unlikely, this game is for every bada**, right?

Although they arent the best at running solo, the support classes can hold their ground somewhat if they separate from the pack. But If you’re a straight up buff/debuff/ class and you’re caught alone (:musical_score: with no one to call your own​:musical_score: ) then you’ll be pretty much screwed at that point.

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I agree but reyna should have some option when she cant use fail safe on the team. Like maybe she get like a 40% lower over shield or something. Or be able to use it on enemies and it like slows them for like 1 sec.

Looking back on Borderlands: TPS and Claptrap’s ‘Through Thick and Thin’ I can imagine this to work in BB.
Although it would most likely have to be a Skill, that gives you CDR and shares a smaller percentage of CDR with allies within a given radius.

Side note about Kleese, he can literally tank an insane amount of Damage (for a non-tank char). But it’s very situational, as it requires him to have a nest of Energy Rifts (which can and will be destroyed in battle).

The point is, many ‘support’ characters (as in all, including ‘healers’) can stand their ground to some extent (just like @Precursor said).

But just as Kleese has to rely on an intact Rift Network to do so, Reyna needs to rely on her Failsafe passive. You need to stick to at least one team mate, just like Kleese needs to stick to his Rifts.

Also, giving her an additional slow seems somewhat redundant to me :confused:
(Almost any Reyna I’ve seen runs Lockdown for that.)

As a Kleese player, my favorite thing is taunting against a sentry as my invincible shield ignores them. Then someone takes out my rift and gets the true taunt. Also how do you change the color of words like that?

[color='color name']Text[/color] :wink:

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Oftentimes, these will occur at the same time with the exact same numbers.

If you have too many buffs/debuffs floating around (which is liable to be true given the helix options on a load of characters compounded by your suggested addition of a buff/debuff focused character), balance can quickly be punted out the window. Eventually, the game model becomes “bring 1 strong character and 4 supports that exist purely to buff her and debuff her target so that she can 1 shot the universe”. I have actually seen this happen (just ask anyone that played City of Heroes; the “optimal” team ended up being 8 support characters because they could just buff each other up to the point where each of them was as hard to kill as the mightiest tank and as hard hitting as the mightiest DPS). While I agree that there is something of a dearth of buff/debuff as opposed to shield/heal amongst the support characters, it’s important not to include too much.

Of course, one of the traditional solutions to the “too many buffs” problem is preventing certain buffs/debuffs from stacking with one another. The problem with this become players attempting to construct groups that have the most powerful combination of buffs and doing the exact same thing. It also means that having multiple buff/debuff-driven support characters on a team ends up rendering them either wholly or partially worthless.

Something else that needs to be mentioned is that percentage based buffs/debuffs are really hard to balance. Consider Alani’s Full Saturation helix, which causes her Wellspring to provide 30% DR for 6 seconds. That’s a pretty big burst of survivability for the average character (increasing TTK by roughly 43%), but throw that on Boldur or Kelvin (who can both manage some very impressive DR), and you’re talking about making a character that’s already difficult to kill effectively immune to damage (Boldur can get up to ~65% DR, iirc; Alani would push that up to 95%, or less, if the devs had the foresight to include a DR cap; that’s a 7-fold increase in his survivability if there isn’t a cap).

Now, I think it’s important to mention that I am not averse to a “supporter” that isn’t called as such because they heal in one way or another. I’m just saying that their level of contribution through buffs/debuffs should be moderated. In my mind, a well designed buff/debuffer would have straight damage base/alt attacks with their skills focused on providing the buffs/debuffs (preferably AoE rather than ST to spread out the potential for insane buff stacking).

I agree with literally everything here. Especially because although healers=support, support does not just mean healer. And TBH, reading his skills i was hoping I could use Kelvin as a rescuer by stunning then putting up a giant shield to save people. Turns out in practice his ice wall is not the best at blocking fire.

Nice point on Alani, I often pick Full Saturation over Extremophile in public story missions. Some people still expect Alani to heal like Miko, or just don’t know her playstyle at all. So I use the DR from this Helix to make sure they survive until the next Full Osmosis Wellspring.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s mainly new players and I’m not angry about it. Adapting to serve the group needs is part of the healer job (and any other role in BB, really).

Personally, I can’t stand Extremeophile. I used it when getting her Wellspring lore (because it became easier to get that minimum value) and never touched it since then. If I’m combat healing, the 30% DR for 6 seconds is going to contribute a lot more than a chance at healing for more. As proof: 30% DR translates into a 43% increase in the effective value of that heal and any other hit points they might have for the duration of the buff. The only time Extremophile will be better than Full Saturation is if you’re doing out of combat healing (and, even then, there’s only a chance).

I’ll admit, I like this idea a lot. Maybe if they ever release the impress she’ll be an “inspiration” type character that can drop buffs. I like the idea of balancing rebuffs with buffs.

INSPIRATION. If they made Jack’s voice a line for a buffing character, the enemy would get a free kill as I fell out of my chair.

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Seems Gearbox had a similar idea. Ernest hype!

Well you got what you asked for! :joy:

(That and even mooore wave clear)

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best support overall is reyna.

I’ve been playing Reyna a lot lately so I definitely agree that she’s an absolutely stellar support character, but she feels limited to single target/small group support to me. Her shield only applies to herself and her target and her bubble isn’t really large enough to encompass a bunch of people (and does almost nothing for melee).

Priority target is great, but it’s not as powerful as Ambra’s +dam from Sunspots (w/ helix) because it only applies to a single target for a short period of time (Ambra’s can hit multiple targets and be effectively permanent).

Reyna’s great (super fun; absolutely love playing her), but she’s limited to only being able to really support/debuff a single target at a time, which brings her down quite a bit in my mind.