I have always played healers in table top games and online MMOs. At first, it was the nurturing side of my nature. The ability to help the party achieve the objectives. Some characters had rich background development in my table top days. In MMOs, it was to keep the party alive. Sometimes, this was harder than it seems, as it was the players who had the difficulties, not the characters.
As I have matured as a person, it is the motherhood side of me that has come out. I get nervous during major battles trying to keep everyone alive. Gentle reminders that people are too far away or blocked. The mother voice telling people “Don’t make me pull this quest over!” I like seeing people’s health bars full and happy. Casters in lich form worry me enough that I carry Harm on my cleric in DDO.
I take pride in my ability to run a cleric. There are those who scoff “Heal-bot” but really it does take dedication to run a pure cleric. You have to be willing to put the party’s needs ahead of your own. You have to be willing to not lead the kill count. Now I know there are caster-based clerics who run awesome clerics and can lead a kill count. But that is not my style. The Mommy in me wants to help.
However, over time, I have become frustrated with being whined at when someone’s hit points are low during battle, especially if I am not not to get killed myself. People shooting through me royally pisses me off, especially in Part 4 of The Shroud when they are targeting Harry, effectively giving me Harry’s aggro. Hint, if your cleric is in the dead penalty box, you are hosed. People yelling, “I’m going down here!” also has been pissing me off. Dead people chatting up a storm while the remaining people and I try to recover during the quest. People delaying taking rezzes without saying anything so I waste mana resending it. And it has made me snappy. Or giggle when they die.
Somewhere along the line, responsibility went out the window. It has become like a parent who always picks up after a child. The child stops doing it themselves. So I pull back. Do not play as much to avoid situations with certain people. But I miss my friends. And find out people take care of themselves when I am not there.
Now, I have guildies who basically take full care of themselves. I just help out when needed. Which allows me to use my mana on the bad guys. “Opps, sorry! Did not see your hit points dropping! I was watching their hit points, not yours.”
But still, it feels like work. And who wants to work while playing a game? Why should they have all the fun parts while I play babysitter?
So I rolled a fighter! No one has a cleric in this level so people have to BYOHs. I bring mine. Such a relief. She is now level 10 and such a stress-relief to play. Told The Boss Commando that everyone else in the guild had to roll and run clerics. It helps that his Gamer Girl who was our other dedicated healer has stopped running her clerics.
But my epic characters are still clerics and I am okay with that. I like running a cleric. Tonight is a raid, Fire on Thunderpeak, and we know we have at least one cleric already on the lineup. We ran the quest successfully last week for the first time. It was messy and a lot of running. But we pulled it off.
Let’s hope tonight that we succeed again!