This will be a more in-depth guide to playing as healers with some character analysis with few 5* healers we do have. Hopefully this guide will help you learn about the healer class more and perhaps even encourage more people to try out the healer class themselves and improve on their skills.
First and foremost, the healers main job is to heal the party. I recommend to heal usually when people get hurt and they have 85% HP left (yes, I know it sounds like a lot of health, but you can never be too careful) or even just slightly injured since the bosses can hurt a lot, but this can change depending on the group, how much damage the boss does, and what difficulty the stage is. Healing also usually gives the most rush gain for the buffer/healing type of healer (I.e. Miki/Millie), whereas DPS healers tend to get their rush gain from their offensive skills and on occasion heals in their combos (I.e. SSophia) Healing also takes advantage of the hit rush accumulation displayed on top right corner in battle so you can get even more rush gain.
Positioning. This in conjunction with dodging is an important factor for every class including healers, especially since it can determine whether you get caught in an attack preventing you from healing the party. I suggest being in the opposite end of the boss/rear end of the map so you get a mostly clear view of everyone while maintaining some distance between other party members in order to not get caught in attacks. Tip: When you heal, you should be able to see at least partially of everyone’s healing animation so you can use that to oversee if someone is near you or not. If it’s near you, I recommend moving/dodging away from person as a safety measure even if it does ruin your combo/interrupt your heal. (If you’re confident that you can survive a hit and have anti-flinch in the party and someone needs desperately needs a heal, you can try and heal them though this shouldn’t happen too often.
Map awareness. Besides the previously mentioned map awareness of party positioning, looking at enemy skill animations can help determine when you need to heal or not as well. If you see an ally being targeted with a skill and might potentially hit them (some are easier to notice), it may be a good idea to anticipate a heal or in the case of DPS healers either dodge cancel if in the middle of casting offensive spells to heal or heal if enough AP in the next cancel (which ever would get you to heal the fastest).
If you’ve been using the other classes, you’ll definitely have to change the way you play a bit. Not only will you have to keep yourself alive, you also need to keep an eye on the party’s health bars/looking at enemy’s skill animation to see if a party member needs a heal. Definitely do not auto as a healer unless you’re playing easy content. (If you do auto as healer in hard content …) You can also never be too sure in PUGs and to be honest, more often than not some people seem to not dodge when they see a healer in a team for some reason. The healer role, with the addition SSophia (and many more of her type will come), can be divided into two roles. The Defensive healers (I.e. buffer/healing healers like Millie/Miki, etc.) and the DPS healers (I.e. healers who do decent damage while trying to maintain the party’s health)
These type of healers aren’t too difficult to play aside from the first 3 healer priorities I mentioned. Main job is to heal the party, dodge when needed and buff if they have a buffing skill or through rush. In terms of healing output, they tend to be the most reliable since they don’t focus on dealing damage and safer to play in pugs just in case other people don’t dodge.
Now this is where it’s gets a bit more complex. You now have to make decisions on whether you need to anticipate a heal/heal in general or continue on doing your DPS combo, while focusing on the 3 healer priorities. This can’t be emphasized enough, but even as a DPS healer, your main priority is still to heal. I recommend to heal if you’re in a DPS combo or dodge cancel and heal since it’s not worth losing a party member. If you think just healing and dodging is boring, but want to try out a healer, then DPS healers might be something you want to try. Even more so with the DPS healers, you definitely don’t want to be on auto as DPS healers usually don’t have the best AI to heal. It gets even more complex with melee healers introduced later(I.e. Rena) though fortunately she can be played at ranged as well and her AI works well. Cough.. Cough JK Meracle on the other hand focuses and excels in close range as a DPS melee healer, and probably the highest skill based when playing manually since close range tends to be more difficult and really fun to play as.
Don’t Charge Assault (CA)
While healers can technically charge assault, they only get the positioning portion from a CA and they do not gain the increased cast speed like invokers do or faster charge up like the other classes whether they use healing symbology or offensive ones. It’s not really worth to do this as a healer since getting hit by a critical hit especially with healer defenses is not the best idea. Even DPS healers don’t really benefit from CA’s since you’ll want to take advantage of a 150% cancel after using a normal attack to do bigger damage or do a bigger heal. (I suppose if there’s a healer with a close range offensive skill and you want to start up your combo faster, you could CA, but that only applies to one healer in JP and even then risking a crit likely isn’t worth it. Only reason that I can possibly think of using CA right now in GL would be if your near a boss, need to heal someone and want to position yourself, but that’s unlikely to happen and better to just move away from the boss and heal.
(These are just healing averages that I get from the units and weapons I own. If you happen to have an MLB Millie/ Miki with good weapons/max seeds, feel free to add those stats in the comments if you wish)
Summer Sophia: (No LB, No seeds, Level 2 0 LB Blue Star Gadget weapon); Faerie Light Wave (INT x 120%)
- ~2645 – no cancel
- ~3960 – 150% cancel
- ~5274 – 200% cancel
- ~7897 – 300% cancel
Summer Sophia: (MLB, Max seeds, MLB Ocean’s Eye event weapon); Faerie Light Wave (INT x 120%)
- ~4467 – no cancel
- ~6730 – 150% cancel
- ~8969 – 200% cancel
- ~13485 – 300% cancel
*Note: Blue Star Gadget will net you bigger heals due to the +15% INT, even tried it at level 2, and it was still slightly higher healing. This note is referring to comparing MLB SSophia with Blue Star Gadget versus an MLB Ocean’s Eye, though same would apply to a regular SSophia with/without LB’s.
Millie: (2 LB, Max seeds, Level 16 Winged Scepter 3 LB); Faerie Star (INT x 330%)
- ~8373 -no cancel
- ~12565 – 150% cancel
- ~16710 – 200% cancel
- ~25169 – 300% cancel (need to use both of Millie’s offensive moves first before the heal)
Miki: (1 LB, No seeds, Level 16 Winged Scepter 3 LB); Faerie Star (INT x 330%)
- ~8102 – no cancel
- ~12159 – 150% cancel
- ~16184 – 200% cancel
- ~24283 – 300% cancel (Miki’s offensive skills are too expensive to reach this heal cancel even with 20% AP reduction from Daril, needs Daril’s rush 40% AP reduction to pull off)
*Note: Millie and Miki would be better off to just heal or 150% cancel heal if you need a bigger heal since you don’t really want to risk someone dying in the process of you trying to get a bigger heal off.
- INT +30% (self).
- Reduce Symbol Invoking Time by 30% (Self).
- At 10% HP or higher, has a 80% chance of Surviving a Lethal Attack (Self).
She’s mostly a healer bot, but due to her 30% cast time reduction she can use her offensive skills as well if wanting to contribute to elemental stun. Her INT +30% and 30% cast time reduction actually makes her the best at healing since she has Faerie Star in her kit, but her offensive presence be it through rush or talents is pretty much nothing. I recommend getting her rush first through healing and if people still don’t have their rush up by then and don’t need healing, feel free to cast your offensive symbology. Her rush is only a 2000% multiplier so make sure to rush first in a rush combo. HP regen can be useful against poison since it kinda negates it with healing every 3 seconds, though I prefer burst heals for emergency rushes. (She’d have to be MLB, against a light weak boss, and have weaker teammates to consider going 2nd)
- All Elemental Damage Dealt +30% (Party)
- Damage Taken -30% (Self)
- AP Cost -20% (Self)
As with Miki, she is also a healer bot. Since she doesn’t have cast speed reduction, her heals and offensive symbology are on the slow end. You will basically be healing non stop, besides for when dodging, to get your rush up. It should be fairly quick since Faerie Star has a fairly large rush gain ( I think it might be around 15-18% of the full bar). I typically don’t have time to cast offensive spells since most people’s rush gain should be up by the time you get full rush bar, but on the occasion it does and no one needs healing you can cast them. I honestly take out the offensive skills, so I won’t accidentally press the other skills. You can use them to contribute elemental stun, especially against earth weak enemies. Just be wary that due to no cast speed reduction unless paired with someone who can reduce cast time for you, your heal may or may not be up in time if you need to use it. Unlike Miki who has no offensive presence, Millie contributes through her rush (50% critical rate up to all party members) with a 80% instant heal and 30% elemental damage with her talent that works well with teams using imbue weapons and innate elemental attacks making her excel in any party. (Similarly to Miki, she’d have to be MLB, against a earth weak boss, and have weaker teammates to consider going 2nd, so best to rush first)
Summer Sophia Esteed
- INT +20% & Recover allies AP when using Offensive Symbology (Self)
- AP Consumption -40% & INT Damage +30% when Skill Chain 3 or above (Self)
- ATK & INT Damage +20% (All Allies) & Nullify “Movement Speed Decrease” Effect (Self & All Close Ranged Weapon Allies)
- Symbology Cast Time Reduced by 15% & AP Consumption -10%(Self)
Our first DPS healer to hit global and surprisingly didn’t get nerfed as much as the other summer units. Hits fairly hard with her self INT 20% and INT +20% damage buff, especially against lightning weak enemies. She can hit even harder if paired with Maria, Faize and Ronyxs. She has pretty fast heals and can cast her offensive skills at moderate pace with her 15% cast time reduction. Her heal is only a INT x 120% multiplier though, so if you need an AI healer for single player it’s better to choose Miki/Millie. She’s best played manually and you do have to pay more attention to when doing combos and when needing to heal your allies since you might be caught doing a combo when you need to heal (especially in PUGs, less so in premade groups) With her ATK and INT damage +20% talent she can excel in pretty much any party composition, though her rush 40% INT to party leans towards Invokers/caster comps. The ability to recover ally AP when using her offensive skills is really great as well, allowing party members to continue their 300% combo to do more damage. Her rush gain is on the slow end though since she doesn’t use faerie star like Miki and Millie. I typically do the usually DPS combo/add in heals if necessary. Once it hits 120 hit combo and if no one needs heals desperately, I just spam thunder strike to finish getting her rush up. (Her placement in a rush combo entirely depends on the party composition and LB’s, typically 2nd-3rd is where it’s fine to be at, 1st if everyone is MLB with thunder element equipped, 4th if you just get really weak teammates and you’re mlb).
Overall the healer role isn’t too complex like the defender or attacker classes, and so long as you can keep your party’s health stable you should be fine. PUGs are usually where you have to keep an eye on healing the most, especially as a DPS healer, but that shouldn’t be too much of an issue as people I think have mostly gotten used to healers. Feel free to add advice and tips in the comments if you want to share something related to the healer role! And most importantly have fun playing as one <3
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