Perhaps the most iconic and useful ability an Empath has is to heal the ailments of other adventurers. With skill, one can even snatch a fallen adventurer away from the jaws of death itself.
- 1 Healing patients
- 1.1 Linking
- 1.2 Transferring wounds and scars
- 1.3 Transferring vitality, poison, and disease
- 1.4 Transferring empathic shock
- 1.5 Advanced options for highly skilled Empaths
- 1.6 Over-healing
- 1.7 Other pitfalls
- 1.8 Healing etiquette
- 1.9 Common settings for healing
- 2 Healing yourself
Warning: It is recommended that you not attempt to transfer injuries, poison, or disease until you have the ability to heal these conditions, yourself. For example, healing scars requires a second spell, Heal Scars, and more skill in magic to cast. Curing your own poison and disease requires the more challenging Flush Poisons and Cure Disease spells.
An Empath heals people by transferring their injuries to his own body and then casting healing spells on his own body.
The first step is to establish a diagnostic link with your patient by TOUCHing him. This displays detailed information about the person's wounds, vitality, and any disease or poison that may be present.
With sufficient empathy skill, you can specify the severity of wounds that you wish to see.
TOUCH <PATIENT> [OPTION]
- WOUND OR WOUND <INJURY SEVERITY>
- BLEEDING OR BLEEDING <INJURY SEVERITY>
It is possible in most game clients to send this information to a dedicated window so that it is not lost in the scroll of the main story window. This is typically done via the Familiar window.
- In StormFront: Wound information can be sent to the FAMILIAR window. This can be opened by going into the Windows menu (in the upper left by default) and clicking the eye icon by Familiar. The window can then be re-sized or positioned as needed. If the window is closed, the wound information will default back to the story window.
BREAK [ALL|<PATIENT>]: this command breaks an empathic link and halts any wound transfers in process. There are several reasons you may want to break a link:
- You realize that you are taking a wound that will kill you if you finish the transfer.
- You are taking vitality from a deader, or your vitality is running too low.
- You attempted a partial transfer that failed, instead starting a full or wild transfer.
- You start taking a wound your patient doesn't want you to take, such as a bleeder.
- You realize that your patient is a fellow Empath. (You don't gain empathy experience from live Empaths.)
This ability must be learned from a fellow adventurer. As long as you and the patient are in the same room, a persistent link will not break. You can also check this patient's wounds without touching him by typing PERCEIVE HEALTH <PATIENT>.
The Hand of Hodierna ability (see below) requires a persistent link.
LINK <PATIENT> PERSISTENT
LINK <PATIENT> PERSISTENT CANCEL: this command breaks the persistent link with your patient
Transferring wounds and scars
At low levels of skill, wounds will transfer slowly, and you may not be able to take more than one wound at a time without having your link break.
TAKE <PATIENT> [INTERNAL] <BODY PART> [SCAR] [PART|HALF|MOST] [CAREFUL|QUICK]: for transferring individual wounds or scars. For example:
- TAKE MELETE HEAD: transfers external head wound at normal speed
- TAKE MELETE INTERNAL ABDOMEN SCAR QUICK: transfers internal abdomen scar at maximum speed
- TAKE MELETE CHEST HALF CAREFUL: transfers half of an external chest wound as carefully as possible
Valid Body Part Options:
- RIGHT EYE
- LEFT EYE
- RIGHT ARM
- LEFT ARM
- RIGHT HAND
- LEFT HAND
- RIGHT LEG
- LEFT LEG
- TAIL (the Empath must have a tail)
- SKIN (the nerves are "internal skin")
It requires 6 ranks of empathy to take internal wounds, 7 ranks of empathy to take external scars, and 8 ranks of empathy to take internal scars.
TAKE <PATIENT> [CAREFUL|QUICK] [ALL EXTERNAL|ALL INTERNAL] [ALL WOUNDS|ALL SCARS] [EVERYTHING]: for transferring multiple wounds at once. For example:
- TAKE MELETE EVERYTHING: transfers all external and internal wounds and scars
- TAKE MELETE QUICK ALL SCARS: transfers all external and internal scars at maximum speed
Optional syntax: partial transfers
By default, TAKE will transfer the entire wound. If you are concerned with over-healing or just want to reduce the patient's wound to a manageable level, it might be better to only take PART, HALF, or MOST of the wound. Unsuccessful outcomes result from a lack of empathy skill:
- You fail to take anything.
- You lose focus and take the whole wound.
- You lose control and wildly transfer the whole wound at an increased speed.
Optional syntax: speed
The QUICK option increases the speed of the transfer and the amount of empathy experience you gain, but it requires more skill to pull off. When quickly transferring a partial wound, there is an increased risk of losing control and transferring all of a wound. This also makes it more difficult to reduce wound severity. (See below.)
The CAREFUL option decreases the speed of the transfer, but it reduces the amount of skill needed. When carefully transferring a partial wound, there is a decreased risk of losing control and transferring all of a wound. This also makes it easier to reduce wound severity. (See below.)
Transferring vitality, poison, and disease
You can restore the patient's vitality by sacrificing your own. Be aware that patients with more stamina than you have more vitality than you, so what looks like a manageable loss to them may be devastating to you.
TAKE <PATIENT> VITALITY [CAREFUL|QUICK]
As with wounds, some poisons and diseases are worse than others. Usually the TOUCH output provides some indication of the severity of poison, but with disease, you just have to know about each disease and what you can handle.
- DISEASE (transfers all disease)
Transferring empathic shock
Empathic Shock is a condition that results from overloading your empathic senses by directly causing harm to another living creature. Empaths who are suffering from shock have a diminished ability to use abilities that require empathy, such as healing.
You can transfer half of another Empath's shock to yourself if you wish; you will then be shocked until your senses recover. Multiple Empaths can spread the shock around in a "shock circle" so that no one Empath has a lot of shock.
TAKE <PATIENT> SHOCK
Shock scars will remain even after the shock has worn off. They cannot be healed, but they have no mechanical effect.
Advanced options for highly skilled Empaths
With sufficient skill, you will automatically reduce the severity of wounds that you transfer to yourself. The wound you receive may be reduced by as much as 50%, but this requires extremely high levels of skill:
450 ranks is the minimum amount of empathy to see transferred wound reduction on external fresh wounds. You need more than that to start reducing internals, external scars, and internal scars. At that level of empathy, the wound reduction would be very, very minimal. It might not even show up at that level due to rounding errors, etc.
It takes 1,050 ranks to cap the reduction of all types of injuries (which is, yes, still 1/2.)
It's also harder to reduce wounds that are being transferred quickly and easier to reduce wounds that are being transferred carefully. So transferring carefully will allow you to reduce external wounds slightly earlier than 450 ranks of effective empathy. Of course, you'd need more than 1,050 empathy to cap wound reductions for quickly transferred wounds.
If for some reason you don't want to reduce wound severity, add "normal" to the end of the command:
- TAKE MELETE LEFT ARM INTERNAL NORMAL
Normally, when you transfer a patient's chest wound, you receive a chest wound. The redirect ability is used by Empaths to change where a transferred wound will appear. This ability is taught by guildleaders and requires both 60th circle and 320 effective empathy ranks to learn or use. (Empathic Shock may reduce your effective ranks.)
A redirect will last for five minutes or until you cancel it, whichever comes first.
Once your body part is destroyed (useless-level wound), you will not be able to direct additional wounds to it. If the body part is destroyed during a redirected transfer, the remaining wound will not be transferred at all. (In other words, if you are redirecting a lethal chest wound to your right leg, and you lose all of your leg, the patient's remaining chest wound will not automatically transfer to your chest.)
REDIRECT ALL TO <YOUR BODY PART>: redirects all transferred wounds and scars to selected body part
REDIRECT <PATIENT'S BODY PART> TO <YOUR BODY PART>: chooses a specific body part to redirect
REDIRECT CHECK: shows your current redirection status
REDIRECT CANCEL: cancels any current redirection
The ultimate manifestation of healing ability, the unity link allows an Empath to instantly assume every wound on a patient but with no redirection or reduction in severity. This brand of healing thus leaves the Empath with every single wound the patient had, but as a new application of Empathy, it leaves the patient with no scarring and it teaches better than "vanilla" healing does.
Unity is taught by guildleaders and requires 70th circle and around 380 effective empathy ranks to learn and use.
There is a skill-based cool-down between uses, starting at three minutes and possible to work down to one minute.
LINK <PATIENT> UNITY
Hand of Hodierna
This is a high-level ability (80th circle's worth or around 440 empathy) that is taught by guildleaders. It is a passive ability that transfers wounds from patient to Empath without any action from the Empath, once they have established the persistent link and then invoked the Hand of Hodierna link. There is no redirection or reduction in severity.
This is a fairly slow transfer; it starts out a little random, hence a bit more dangerous to the Empath than normal healing. For amount healing X on the patient, the Empath gets anything between 1X and 3X in wound, so they have to be pretty careful and on top of things to make sure that their multiple patients and wounds don't pile up too quickly. Thus you have no way to know what was going to come across or exactly how bad it will be. The randomness decreases with skill until the Empath consistently gets a 1:1 transfer at around 600 ranks. However, since this is a slow healing ability, the most you will ever get at once is nine points of "wound," which is about halfway to a bleeder, for reference.
The Empath starts with the ability to form two such links at 80th circle/440 ranks, three at around 500 ranks, and four at around 560 ranks. In addition to reducing randomness, additional skill allows an Empath to transfer more wound per person, though the total amount still caps out fairly low.
The Hand of Hodierna is meant to teach quite well, though not in such large bursts as vanilla healing or unity and is mainly aimed at group hunting situations.
LINK <PATIENT> HODIERNA: establishes a manifestation of the Hand of Hodierna link
LINK <PATIENT> HODIERNA CANCEL: ends a specific manifestation of the Hand of Hodierna link
LINK ALL HODIERNA CANCEL: ends all manifestations of the Hand of Hodierna link
It is possible to be too eager to help. If you transfer a lethal wound or scar to yourself, you will die. It is also possible to bleed to death. (Vitality drops to 0.) This is known as "over-healing," and it is often disdainfully viewed as a beginner's error.
Even if you are perfectly healthy, transferring an entire "useless" level wound or scar to a vital area will kill you. (Vital areas include the head, neck, chest, abdomen, and back.) This is a possibility when working with dead patients.
More commonly, over-healing happens when the Empath fails to pay attention to the gradual accumulation of wounds and scars. Once a vital wound reaches "useless" level, you die. Similarly, if you manage to acquire a useless-level scar while transferring scars from a patient, you will die. (If, however, you get a useless-level scar by healing your own wounds and ignoring your scars, you will not die unless you try to transfer additional scars from the patient.)
Be aware that some of your wounds may be hidden from the HEALTH output. This is especially true of scars when you already have wounds to the same body part. Always check yourself with the PERCEIVE HEALTH SELF command; it gives TOUCH-like details for your own wounds and scars.
The only way to prevent over-healing is to pay attention. A novice who tries to transfer a lethal wound will probably find that the link breaks before the entire wound is transferred, but it is far safer for the novice to team up with a more experienced Empath.
More experienced Empaths can prevent over-healing by using the partial transfer options, healing themselves, and then transferring the patient's remaining wounds.
Wound redirection can also be employed. (For example, if you can't safely transfer an entire wound to your chest, redirect it to your leg.)
Wound reduction can increase the number of wounds you can safely transfer to your own body before you need to heal yourself, but unless you can predict the reduction with 100% accuracy, you probably shouldn't take an otherwise-lethal wound under the assumption that it will be reduced to a survivable level.
Death is not the only problem caused by wounds.
Activities that may be hindered by wounds and/or scars:
- transferring additional wounds/scars to that part
- tending wounds (arm or hand wounds)
- harnessing mana (nerve wounds)
- INVOKING cambrinth (head wounds)
- holding cambrinth (missing arm or hand)
- defending yourself in combat
- disarming traps and picking locks
- cleaning and playing instruments
Moreover, if you are holding something when your arm or hand acquires a useless-level wound, you will drop that item. The system will prevent other people from picking up that item for some time, but if you leave the room, the protection will cease.
Ask before healing
Do not assume that every injured person wants you to heal them. They may have reasons for not wanting your help, such as the desire to tend their own wounds for first aid experience, the desire to hold out for a particular Empath, a dislike of you or your race, or an aversion to empathic healing in general.
Accordingly, you should always ask if the person wants to be healed before actually healing him. If the person doesn't respond, take that as a no.
However, if the person is on the verge of death and is unable to respond due to unconsciousness or immobility, few would object to your taking emergency life saving measures.
Take turns with other Empaths
When two or more Empaths are in the room, it is expected that they will take turns healing patients to spread the experience and tips around. If you healed the last patient, and another patient comes in for healing, wait a reasonable amount of time (for the other Empath to respond) before healing him yourself. Once an Empath has "claimed" a patient by touching him, you should refrain from touching that patient unless the other Empath asks for help or declines to heal the person.
When a novice Empath is present, it is considered polite to allow the novice to take the easy wounds before stepping in to finish healing the patient.
Offer tips to Empaths who heal you
Patients are generally expected to offer tips or payment for being healed. What is considered to be an appropriate amount depends on the severity of the patient's injuries, the patient's means, and other factors. For example, if you are wearing a small fortune in gear and accessories, a tip of only a few silvers' worth of gems may not be well received. Similarly, if the Empath made a house call to a distant location, a larger tip may be in order.
Some Empaths are happy to work for free and may even refuse tips, but it's always polite to offer. A few may insist on payment up front.
Common settings for healing
See the etiquette section above for common courtesies that Empaths are expected to follow while healing.
There are some designated areas where Empaths can work on patients. Such areas include the Crossing Infirmary (or more recently, right inside the guildhall). However, any area where adventurers commonly gather can be a place to offer healing.
- Depending on the location and time of day, patients will come to you.
- Such places are usually free of hostile creatures.
- Gathering places are often the center of social activity.
- Such places are often good places to teach or listen to classes, and many have conveniences like trash cans, things to forage, etc., allowing you to train other skills between patients.
- You are likely to find other Empaths who can help you, especially if you're working at the guild.
- There may be more Empaths than patients.
- Gathering spots are often populated by AFK scripters who add to the spam/clutter without contributing anything to the social/role-playing environment.
- During odd hours, you may be the only person there.
Those who are more daring may venture into hunting grounds and offer to heal hunters.
- You don't have to wait for patients to come to you.
- You don't have to share patients with other Empaths.
- Being able to handle yourself in combat is often a source of pride among the less passive Empaths.
- You must be able to defend yourself against the creatures in the area. (It helps to cast defensive buffs and wards before going into hunting areas.)
- The patient may acquire additional injuries while you are in the process of transferring wounds, making over-healing more likely.
- You may be injured by hostile creatures, making over-healing more likely.
- As you accumulate wounds, your defenses are penalized.
- In a high-scroll environment, it can be harder to keep track of what's going on.
- Hunters are sometimes hidden or not responsive.
Unlike most other settings, the normal rules of etiquette do not apply during triage. For example, Empaths are not expected to take turns or refrain from healing each other's patients. Tipping is also not expected, although many will accept tips if offered.
Unlike regular healing, triage Empaths aren't usually focused on getting someone fully healed before moving on. Rather, the focus is on getting wounded fighters back into battle. This may mean that you only heal those injuries that prevent a corpse from holding life.
If there isn't enough manpower to heal everyone, here is the general order of priority for triage patients:
- live front-line fighters
- live support personnel (Clerics, draggers, etc.)
- dead front-line fighters
- dead support personnel
- live people who aren't fighting, supporting, or helping triage
- dead people who aren't fighting, supporting, or helping triage
- AFK scripters (not everyone would put them at the bottom)
It is considered very bad form to over-heal during triage. A dead Empath only adds to the workload. If you accidentally over-heal during triage, the most courteous practice is to DEPART (especially if there are other patients).
Once you have transferred your patient's injuries to your own body, you cast healing spells on your own wounds to heal them. Empath spells are cast like traditional spells and can be used with or without cambrinth. However, Empathic shock diminishes your ability to use them.
Your skill with Utility magic determines how much mana you can channel into healing spells. The Utility Mastery feat also increases the amount of mana you can put into utility spells. The more mana you use, the more powerful the spell.
Heal Wounds and Heal Scars are the only options for novices. Once you prepare the spell and provide enough mana to power it, CAST with the following syntax:
- CAST <BODY PART> [EXTERNAL|INTERNAL|REVERSE]: By default, if you specify a body part with no optional syntax, all of the spell's energy will go toward the external injury. Any remaining energy will go toward the internal injury. REVERSE reverses this order, giving priority to the internal injury. Using the EXTERNAL or INTERNAL option will treat only those injuries, even if you use enough mana to heal both. Casting Heal Wounds internally is useful if you are trying to acquire or preserve bleeders for first aid.
Once you have about 80 ranks in utility magic, you can begin using the Heal spell. Unlike Heal Wounds and Heal Scars, Heal cures up to four wounds at a time. This spell automatically targets your most serious wounds. When treating a single wound, Heal is a less efficient use of mana than the individual healing spells, but it saves time when you are healing multiple wounds. Valid casting syntax:
- CAST [WOUND|SCAR]: If no optional syntax is specified, the spell will treat the most serious wounds and scars. The WOUND and SCAR syntax can limit the spell to just those injuries.
Once you have about 250 effective ranks in utility magic (this requirement may be reduced by the utility mastery feat or appropriate buffs), you can begin using the Regenerate spell. This is a cyclic spell that will heal some of your wounds every 10 seconds; it requires a constant supply of mana. At high levels, this spell can turn an Empath into a triage machine or a nearly invincible foe. If you plan to use cyclic spells, it is worth learning the Magical Feats of Raw Channeling, Deep Attunement, and Efficient Channeling.
For instant full healing, nothing beats the Fountain of Creation spell. It is an esoteric spell that requires 250 ranks in utility and 22 stamina to start using. With enough mana, it can potentially heal all of your wounds. (If you don't supply enough mana, it will start with whatever wounds are listed first in your HEALTH output.) The more injured you are, the more mana it takes. Casting this spell causes vitality loss and fatigue, and you will have to wait 60 seconds before you can cast this spell again.
As powerful as those spells are, they do not treat vitality loss, poison, or disease. For that, you need Vitality Healing, Flush Poisons, and Cure Disease. When casting Flush Poisons and Cure Disease, you
must *can* specify the poison or disease you wish to target, but that is not required. You can see this in your HEALTH output.