SWTOR Corruption Sorcerer PvE Healing Guide by Kalizo

SWTOR Corruption Sorcerer PvE Healing Guide by Kalizo.

Introduction to Corruption Sorcerer

Welcome to the 4.0 Sorcerer healing guide. The goal of this guide is help new players better understand this class/role and its intricacies in regards to PvE encounters. Unlike Dps, where set rotations provide the best Dps output, healing is subjective and not as ridged. There are many ways to accomplish your goal and this guide will outline only one of them. My aim is to provide enough information so that we steer clear of bad habits, as urgency in healing is more important than proper gearing. However, combining good healing practices along with optimized gear will give you the best chances in holding your team together when they need it most.

Terminology & Jargon

  • Bubble – Static Barrier
  • Puddle – Revivication circle
  • God Bubble – Force Barrier
  • GCD – Global Cool Down
  • Buff – An effect that is desirable (Power up)
  • Debuff – An effect that is undesirable
  • Adds – Additional enemies spawned during a boss encounter
  • HoT – Heal over Time
  • DoT – Damage over Time
  • Pull – Extrication
  • Ops Frame – Operation Group Frame (User Interface)
  • Cool Downs – Anything that increases Healing/Damage output or raises Defensive

4.0 Changes

  • Main stat (Strength/Willpower/Skill/Aim) is now Mastery stat.
  • Critical rating is now a combination of Critical and Surge rating.
  • The introduction of Phase Walk to sorcerer’s world and the passive abilities it brings along with it.

Stat Explanation

Primary Stats

  • Mastery: This is your character’s main stat. It is found on almost every piece of gear you will attain. Having a lot of it is good as it raises your character’s base performance, however, it does not always take priority in your distribution as you already inherently get a solid amount of it without trying.
  • Endurance: This denotes how much health your character will have. 10 points of endurance add ~100 HP points. Similarly to Mastery, obtaining this stat is not difficult, in fact, commendation (or crystal in 4.0) bought gear heavily favors Endurance over Power. Healers do not need an abundance of Endurance, as we should not be taking a lot of enemy hits. However, it is important to have enough Endurance so that should you get hit, you remain alive. Generally, the rule of thumb is put Endurance on a lower priority than every other stat as you get too much of it as it is.

Secondary Stats

  • Power: Mods come with either Power or Defense now (new to 4.0). Power increases bonus healing and, out of the two choices, should be your priority. It also takes priority over Endurance. Lower Endurance/ higher Power mods benefit healers better than the opposite.
  • Defense: As a healer, you are not a tank and do not equip a shield generator. Defense is useless to your class. Do not equip it under any circumstance.

Tertiary Stats

  • Critical Rating: This is now the combination of Critical and Surge (pre 4.0). This decides how often heals will critically heal and, when they do, how much they will critically heal for. Because it hosts two stats in one, the return you get by equipping more Critical hugely outweighs other stats. Although it is still too early to conclude how much Critical you can stack before you hit diminishing returns (accumulating anymore has no benefit), it is still never a bad thing to have a healthy amount of.
  • Alacrity: This stat has made its presence increasingly more known with every major update and has now got to the point where balancing it with Critical rating is important. Alacrity speeds everything up, it decreases your cast times allowing you to get heals off faster and increases your force regeneration to balance out that faster use of heals. It also decreases your GCD (global cool down). Since the beginning, SW:ToR has had a 1.5second window of inactivity in between the use of each ability; Alacrity now decreases that down time between abilities.
  • Accuracy: This stat is used to account for enemy defensive chances. Operation bosses have a static 10% defensive chance meaning you need 110% percent (force/tech) accuracy rating to compensate for that. This is incredibly important to Dps classes but not relevant to healing classes, as your teammates do not dodge your heals, so don’t waste your allocation on a stat that serves you no purpose.
  • Shield: This is the chance that the tank’s shield generator (off-hand) activates. This is tank related and not necessary to any healing classes.
  • Absorption: This is how much damage the shield protects the tank from when the shield is activated. Absorption is like the surge for tank classes but again, is not important to healing classes.

Stat Distribution

Depending on the item level of your gear, you have an allotment of stat points. Allocating these points in different stats (Critical, Mastery, Power, etc.) spend your available points. This means you have to balance your allocation in a way that compliments your healing goals. Below I have listed the general idea of gearing:

General Approach:

  • Mastery = As much of it as you can
    • This excludes augments and crystal/commendation bought lettered mods that sacrifice Power for Mastery
  • Endurance = As little of it as you can
    • This is unavoidable in augments which is even more reason to avoid it everywhere you can.
  • Power = As much of it as you can
    • This excludes augments. Augments will be discussed more in another section.
  • Accuracy = 0%
  • Critical rating = 1534-1753 (38.29-39.76%)
  • Alacrity = 999-1153 (10.23-11.46%)

* Includes all class / companion buffs

Gear Break down

6-piece Force Mystic Set bonus

Earpiece:

  • Quick Savant Device (Alacrity) -OR-
  • Adept Device (Critical)

Implants:

  • Quick Savant Device (Alacrity) -OR-
  • Adept Device (Critical)

Relics:

  • Focused Retribution (Mastery Proc)
  • Serendipitous Assault (Power Proc)

Augments:

  • Advanced Alacrity augment 40 -OR-
  • Advanced Critical augment 40

Advanced Discussion

Use your earpiece, implant and augment tertiary stats to accomplish your allocation goals. If you have Alacrity in your earpiece and your implants and have reached your chosen Alacrity %, augment in Critical. Note that the Quick Savant and Adept pieces are the optimized pieces. The un-optimized pieces (vendor bought) are named Savant (Alacrity) and Efficient (Critical) as they have less Power and more Endurance. Optimized and un-optimized pieces have the same amount of tertiary stat for each gear level.

How stats are allocated vary person to person and there will be some objections to this specific allocation. Alacrity should remain constant through the gearing process because it creates muscle memory. Choosing an Alacrity percentage depends on preference. 999 points of Alacrity equal 10.23% and I would not recommend going anywhere above 11%. If a player feels they want it faster and are willing to sacrifice Critical rating, that is their choice. Theory crafting makes the argument that 1351 Alacrity is the most optimal allocation. The choice to follow this should bring in factors like latency (server connection), personal reaction time, and overall healing style.

The long time argument for “Sorcs against Crit” is that Static Barrier cannot crit so you’re wasting your allocation. The truth is, in very hardcore progression, critical heals save lives. This topic is less controversial now as Crit in 4.0 is the “God-stat” but even before, critical heals save teams from wipes. Similarly like B mods (high endurance) save tanks from death. Theoretically they are not optimal, as theory crafters will elude to, however theory crafting does not include the unknown variable that plagues every team, human error.

Higher Critical values also yield an amazing amount of Force Surge stacks Making force management easier and instant cast Revivication puddles more frequent / not as taxing to use.

Augments

Many have opinions on what stat is the most important and debate over which stat you should augment in. Through theory crafting, it has been determined that tertiary stats are king. Augmenting in Alacrity and Critical is more beneficial than choosing Power or Mastery. Augments should be used to do exactly that, augment. If most of your enhancements, implants & earpiece have alacrity on them, augment in critical to balance it out and vice-versa.

Utility

Its important to know exactly what you have at your disposal so reading and understanding your skill points is vital. The combination of utility points is never set in stone and they change encounter to encounter. What one person chooses will be offset by what another decides. The overall goal of selecting your talents is to compliment your healing style with the tool that will help you perform the triage you need most effectively. Because there are so many situational talents to choose from, it’s important to understand the encounter so that you can load up your talents with what will give you the most success. I’m going to explain these from a PvE viewpoint as some of the skills heavily favor PvP or Dps specs.

Skillful

Utility Point Description Explaination
Force Suffusion Overload heals you and up to 7 affected allies for 769-1319. Marginally OK in very few instances in the game. Overall, it’s worthless.
Chain Shock Shock gains a 25% chance to produce a second Shock that deals 25% damage. Dps Talent
Sith Defiance Increase damage reduction by 3% This one is important. Sorcs have light armor and any help in survivability is appreciated.
Tempest Mastery Increase the damage dealt by Force Storm by 25% Dps Talent
Empty Body Increases all healing received by 10%. Does not affect stolen life. This talent is also important. Like Sith Defiance, this talent helps balance out our paper armor by making our heals to ourselves more effective.
Sap Strength Targets stunned by your Electrocute suffer Sapped Strength when Electrocute wears off, which reduces all damage dealt by 25% for 10 seconds. PvPww Talent
Oppressing Force Lowers the cooldown of Electrocute by 10 seconds. In addition, your Whirlwind affects up to 2 additional standard or weak enemies within 8 meters of the target. PvP Talent
Dark Speed Dark Heal increases the movement speed of the target by 50% for 6 seconds. This effect cannot occur more than once every 12 seconds. As the other talents are PvP or Dps oriented, you have a choice between this one and Force Suffusion. Although trivial and slightly geared to PvP, I have found that this provides good utility in the right situation.

Masterful

Utility Point Description Explaination
Suppression Activating Cloud Mind grants Suppression, which increases damage reduction by 25% for 6 seconds. This is a great utility in fights where you know you’ll take significant damage as a light armor healer. Especially if the damage output is high on others, this reduces the time you have to focus on yourself allowing you more time to tend to your team.
Corrupted Flash Reduces the damage taken from all periodic effects by 15%. Situational. Important to know what encounter have mechanics that are classified as periodic effects. An example is Brontes NiM picking up each member of the raid and knocking them back.
Emersion Force Speed grants Emersion, removing all movement-impairing effects and granting immunity to them for the duration. This is another situational choice. It does wonders on Underlurker when Dps can’t kill adds fast enough but can mess up mechanics (Blaster) where you depend on these effects to survive.
Dark Resillience Reduces the damage taken by the target of your Extrication by 25% for 6 seconds after you Extricate them. Additionally increases the healing done by Unnatural Preservation by 30%. This talent is also very useful. I tend to switch back and fourth between this and Suppression. This helps your teammates out when they need it and gives you a substantial boost to your self heal. Because it heals you, it benefits from your 10% increased healing received.
Electric Bindings Overload binds targets in electricity, immobilizing them for 5 seconds. Direct damage dealt after 2 seconds ends the effect prematurely. Mainly a PvP talent, although useful in heavy add phase fights that do not have boss immunity like Revanite Commanders.
Lightning Barrier Increases the amount absorbed by your Static Barrier by 10%. This is Essential as a healer. Your “bubbles” contribute to a good portion of the overall effect you have on a fight. Giving your shields a bump saves lives.
Conspiring Force Targets affected by your Affliction are slowed by 30% for its duration. PvP Talent
Dizzying Force Reduces target’s accuracy by 20% for 8 seconds after Whirlwind ends. PvP Talent

Heroic

Utility Point Description Explaination
Backlash Static Barriers you place on yourself erupt in a flash of light when they end, blinding up to 8 nearby enemies for 3 seconds. This effect breaks from direct damage. Mainly a PvP talent, although useful in heavy add phase fights that do not have boss immunity like Revanite Commanders.
Surging Speed Polarity Shift increases your movement speed by 50% while active. In addition, Force Speed lasts 0,5 seconds longer, and when Force Barrier ends, the active cooldown of Force Speed is finished. PvP Talent – Useful for dealing with heavy pressure to yourself.
Shapeless Spirit Reduces all damage taken while stunned by 30%. PvP Talent – Although it can provide some benefit in some operations. Ex. KP Fabricator droids.
Force Haste Reduces the cooldown of Force Speed by 5 seconds, Force Slow by 3 seconds, and Force Barrier by 30 seconds. PvP Talent – Situational uses for PvE encounters do exist. Ex. Master laser absorbed by Force Barrier.
Force Mobility Thundering Blast, Innervate, and Force Leech may be activated while moving. Strongly recommend this talent. Sorcs are very mobile already but your ability to maintain healing depends on your stacks, which come from Innervate. It is possible to live without this talent as we have had to for so long but in high level raiding, mobility is very important meaning this talent should be one of your first picks.
Corrupted Barrier Your Static Barrier, Force Barrier, and Enduring Bastion heal you for 2% of your total health every second for as long as the last. This healing scales up to 8% with the charges for Enduring Bastion. This keeps a self heal on you as long as you have a bubble up. It is one of the talents I would like to spec into but because there are better options, I typically don’t.
Haunted Dreams If your Whirlwind breaks early from damage, the target is stunned for 2 seconds. In addition, Whirlwind activates instantly. PvP Talent – Good for some PvE encounters.
Shifting Silhouette Reduces all area of effect damage taken by 30%. In addition, using Phase Walk to return to its marked location grants Shifting Silhouette, keeping you from being leapt to or pulled and making you immune to interrupts and ability activation pushback for the next 6 seconds. This is the new 4.0 Talent. The phase walk perks are fairly decent but overall they’re trivial. The big-ticket item here is the AOE Reduction. There are many instances in PvE encounters that you inadvertently experience AOE damage. Many other classes have this effect and the ones that do typically have a higher level of durability.

Abilities

Healing Abilities

Through the coarse of the game you acquire many skills. Some are essential and are used very often and others are for certain situations. Some are also more helpful in PvE, and others in PvP. I will list the most important, and most used abilities with an explanation of each ability with a focus on Sorcerer PvE healing.

staticbarrier Static Barrier

An instant cast shield that absorbs a large amount of damage. This is not a heal.

  • Because it absorbs, it does not benefit from Critical rating
  • Does not benefit from the Absorption stat
  • Applies a Deionized debuff that locks the target from receiving another Static Barrier for 15 seconds

The Deionized lockout is something to be wary of. Static Barriers can only take so much damage and if all the damage happens in the first 5 seconds, your target is unshielded for another 10 seconds. How to properly use Static Barriers are discussed more in the Useful Tips / Reminders section.

resurgence Resurgence

This is your most used ability as a Sorc healer. It is an instant-cast heal that applies a HoT (Heal over Time) that lasts 15 seconds (periodic healing ever 3 seconds) and an armor increase on the target you used it on. It also activates your Force Bending. Force bending grants you extra perks to what ever heal is used next. The five heals affected are:

  • Dark infusion
  • Dark Heal
  • Roaming Mend
  • Innervate
  • Revivication

Having Force Bending available is always preferred as it allows your abilities to be more effective so use Resurgence as often as you can.

Resurgence also uses Renewal if it used on a target that is already experiencing healing from your HoT. When Resurgence is reapplied, it combines all the remaining HoTs not realized from the previous Resurgence and adds them to the new Resurgence that was just applied. This means if you reapplied Resurgence on a target early on in the 15 seconds your second Resurgence would have some valuable HPS that could be realized in 1 second. In circumstances where one or two teammates (ie. Tanks) are taking a concentrated amount of damage, revolving Resurgence between them for Renewal is very beneficial. However, in scenarios where many members of the team could vastly benefit from Resurgence’s HoT and Armor increase, it’s recommended that this move be spread around.

darkinfusion Dark Infusion

This is your big cast big heal. Force Bending decreases the cast time for this heal and your set bonus gives this an automatic critical heal once every minute. It also proc’s your instant cast Dark Heal. Casting both heals in a row provides significant burst healing, especially if Dark Infusion uses the Force Mystic 2-piece set bonus critical effect. Although it has many positives, the cast time, even shortened, is still sometimes too long. I find the time you need this heal most is when someone is very low (they need to be burst healed back up). The problem is that using this long cast heal leaves your target in a dangerous health level for longer. Because it has no cool down lockout, It is my last resort or my preemptive strike. I will also use it if only one target needs healing and innervate is unusable.

darkheal Dark Heal

Dark heal is your smaller version of Dark Infusion. It has a shorter cast time and smaller heal. It receives an instant proc (allows you to use it without casting) from Dark Infusion, Revivication, Lightning Strike and Crushing Darkness. It also benefits from Force Bending, which increases its critical chance to 60%. I very rarely cast Dark Heal, as I rely on the instant cast proc most often.

roamingmend Roaming Mend

Roaming Mend is the pinnacle of Sorc healing. This is your smart heal, meaning it automatically chooses to heal who needs it most. If you cast this without Force Bending, you place 4 charges of Roaming Mend on your target. When that target takes damage, it consumes one charge of Roaming Mend and sends the remaining 3 charges to another target. The same process is repeated until there are no charges left.

  • Force Bending automatically uses all four charges on the four targets that need it most. This is the strongest and most effective burst heal in the game.
  • This ability also places Resistance on the targets it heals and lasts for 45 seconds granting them an internal and elemental damage reduction of 3%.
  • Roaming Mend is my favorite ability to combine with the two charges of Recklessness as it provides instant relief to high-pressure situations.
innervate Innervate

This is your main single target heal that heals your target 4 times (4 tics) over the channeled duration. When it is used with Force Bending, it has a higher chance to critically heal, which not only heals your target for more but also grants you stacks of Force Surge. You can get a maximum of 3 stacks. These stacks serve two purposes:

  • They are consumed to regenerate your force
  • They speed up your cast time for Revivication.

Gaining stacks is incredibly easy in 4.0 because the crit values have increased as we gear a lot more in critical rating.

consumingdarkness Consuming Darkness

This is your force management tool. Using this takes your life in return for force. If you consume while you have stacks of Force Surge then you do not experience any negative effects for doing so. If you do not have stacks when you use it, you will consume life as well as slow your force regeneration rate. Before 4.0, crits on Innervate would vary and bad luck would sometimes affect your force management. However, 4.0 crit values do not yield this situation. We are now at a point where you will have an excess of stacks to consume with or use on Revivication.

revifification Revivication

This is your AOE heal. It heals up to 8 targets and your targets do not need to remain in your “puddle” to receive healing. They only need to tag the puddle for a second and they will gain a periodic healing buff that follows them wherever they go. Revivication also uses stacks of Force Surge:

  • 1 stack = Reduce cast time by 0.25 seconds
  • 2 stacks = Reduce cast time by 0.5 seconds
  • 3 Stacks = Instant cast

Revivication is fairly costly, especially if you use 3 stacks of surge (that are meant to regain your force). Force Bending decreases the force cost of Revivication.

unnaturalpreservation Unnatural Preservation

This is your self heal. It is off the GCD and has a 30 second cool down. If the Dark Resilience utility point is chosen, this ability also gets a 30% increase to its healing done. I’ve met healers (and was one myself) that save this for emergencies. I would recommend planning to avoid emergency situations, not planning for what to do when you get there. Use this heal to keep on top of your raid frame damage as saving it only wastes it.

expunge Expunge

This cleanses a friendly target of up to 2 negative mental, physical or force effects. It also heals for a small amount. This ability is vital in some fight’s mechanics (ie. Revan). Most the time it is used to decrease DoT damage on tanks. Depending on the damage a DoT is doing on one of your teammates, you can choose if it warrants the use of a cleanse or if its easier just to heal through it.

Cooldown and Survivability Abilities

polarityshift Polarity Shift

This ability increases Alacrity by 20%, and grants immunity to interrupts and pushback for 10 seconds. The best use is when your raid frame needs several points of attention to get it back in a healthy shape.

Another, more advanced, use of this cool down is on your opening Dps rotation. Many of the NiM fights in 4.0 have significant Dps checks and not as hard healing ones. Using your Unlimited Power raid–wide buff with Polarity Shift at the start of a pull on a boss can help your team make a Dps check more attainable.

recklessness Recklessness

This ability provides you two stacks that grant your next direct heal (or force attack) a +60% critical chance. The stacks last for 20 seconds or until they are used, which ever comes first.

  • HoTs/DoTs, and Static Barrier do not consume these stacks.
  • Heals with more than one heal in the ability will consume them.
    • Innervate has 4 ticks of healing, 2 stacks of Recklessness can be consumed on any of those 4 ticks.
    • Roaming Mend has four charges and 2 recklessness stacks can be used in the 2 of the 4 charges.

With the amount of Critical rating on Sorc gear in 4.0, the Critical multiplier is fairly high. For this reason, it is recommended that Recklessness stacks be used with Roaming Mend (with Force Bending). This recommendation is further discussed and outlined in Advanced Practices Discussion.

unlimitedpower Unlimited Power

This is your Raid-wide buff that provides anyone within 40m of you a 10% Mastery increase for 10 seconds. Sorcs are the only class that does not need to spend any type of resource to use this buff. This means we are the only class that has no argument as to why it can’t be used, so use it. It’s recommended that it be in your team’s openers as that’s typically the highest amount of cumulative damage output. It can be saved for tight phases as well (both Healing and Dps).

cloudmind Cloud Mind

This ability is off the GCD and reduces your threat with each enemy by 25%. If Suppression is taken as a utility point, it also provides you with a 25% increase to damage reduction for 6 seconds.

extrication Extrication

This ability pulls a friendly target from within 30m to your relative location; it also reduces that targets threat by 25%.

  • Useful in addressing treat issues of teammates who have already used their threat drop.
  • Also incredibly useful in saving teammates from very dangerous situations.
  • If the Dark Resilience utility point is chosen, Extrication provides its target a 25% damage reduction for 6 seconds.
forcebarrier Force Barrier

This ability has an 8 second channel time and a cool down of 3 minutes, unless spec’d differently. It protects you from almost any negative effect but cannot be used while moving. As the 8 second cast continues, you gain stacks of Enduring Bastion.

  • You gain one stack of Enduring Bastion for activating Force Barrier and one stack for ever 2 seconds you spend channeling it to a maximum of 4 stacks. Meaning, you only need to channel Force Barrier for 6 of the 8 seconds to receive the 4 stacks of Enduring Bastion.
  • Enduring Bastion provides you a shield that absorbs incoming damage and immunity to interrupts and pushbacks for another 5 seconds.
  • The amount of damage Enduring Bastion can absorb is reliant on the amount of stacks accumulated while channeling Force Barrier.
forcespeed Force Speed

This ability increases your movement speed by 150% for 2 seconds. Unfortunately, it has seen a cool down lockout increase to 30 seconds in 4.0. It is a great way of getting somewhere quick. Because of the lockout and the fact that it provides no healing, it should be used sparingly. That does not mean save it for emergency, it means use it to help negate negative situations.

overload Overload

This is your knock back ability. If the Force Suffusion utility is chosen, this heals your team when used. However, it really is only worth it if everyone on the team needs healing and you have to knock something back. The only instance I’ve found this useful is on Revan when he spawns blades and no one on your team can knock back. Performing a vital mechanic in the fight and healing people as you do it is a win-win. In any other case, your mulit-target heals will outshine the heal on this ability. I only chose this utility as there were no better options pre 4.0. Now you have another option and the team utility it provides is better then an insignificant heal.

phasewalk Phase Walk

Last, but certainly not least, Phase Walk is our new ability for 4.0. It’s actually mirrored after the Assassin’s Phase Walk, meaning it does the exact same thing. This ability sets a pre-determined drop point, that you choose, and when you activate it, brings you back there instantly. This is a massive increase in survivability in PvP but in PvE it’s trivial. Its uses are similar to Extrication, lifesavers if used properly in very specific situations. Using it can help you escape somewhere you don’t want to be. Just be mindful of where you dropped it, teleporting into fire (or another mechanic) might do the opposite of your intention.

Contributing Damage

There are many instances where healing is not very intense and may require only one healer to heal. As opposed to fighting over the scraps with your co-healer, contribute to your team’s success by doing Dps. The one definite truth is that every encounter is easier with higher Dps. The makings of a great healer is one that can distribute damage while maintaining the passive buffs (armor increases, HoTs, etc.) in low healing scenarios and kick it up to match the damage output of hard healing phases in an instant.

The six main Dps abilities are:

  • Affliction
    • Instant cast DoT lasting 18 seconds
  • Crushing Darkness
    • 2 second cast DoT, provides moderate damage as a healer
    • Procs Dark Concentration (instant cast Dark Heal)
  • Shock
    • Instant cast attack useful while moving
  • Force Lightning
    • Channeled attack immune to pushback (unlike Crushing Darkness)
  • Lightning Strike
    • 1.5 second cast
    • Procs Dark Concentration (instant cast Dark Heal)
  • Force Storm
    • 3 second cast, 8m radius AoE Attack

Tips and Advanced Discussion

Tips & Remainders

  • Remember your Static Barrier (bubble) can only take a certain amount of damage, it’s important to time your application of them to be in line with incoming damage. An example of this would be a few seconds before the fire vents against Torque come up. Bubble your tanks or melee Dps to help protect them from their own slow reaction time. Or right before your tanks take a knock back from Blaster and are out of your range for a short period of time. If you “Deionized” your target (lock them out of receiving your bubble) trying to negate trivial damage that can be healed through, you won’t have the option to apply the shield before a substantial hit. Timing your bubbles can save your team’s lives, use them wisely.
  • Be sure to use Recklessness after you queue up Force Bending with Resurgence as you don’t want one of your Recklessness Charges wasted on the small Resurgence heal.
  • As past guides have alluded to, fine-tuning a healing UI in the UI editor is extremely beneficial. Putting the operation frame in a spot that is accessible without blocking your view as it’s important to see what’s going on around you. Also be sure to include /turn on non-cleansable debuffs. Many people turned that off when 3.0 came out and all the class buffs cluttered the ops frame. Bioware patched this and made sure the most important debuffs are shown first. The reason this is important for sorcs is that we need to know when are targets are no longer Deionized so we may place another Static Barrier on them.
  • It is very easy for a healer to “get lost in the frame” or “tunnel”. Your number one job as a healer is staying alive then healing your team. You’re of no help dead, so doing things that allow for more raid awareness will define you as more than just a competent healer, but a great one.

Advanced Practice Discussion

Renewal vs. Spread

The bottom line is that this choice is based on situational factors. The Renewal heal provides and extra burst to an already burst-type healing class to match the damage centered on a few targets. Spreading Resurgence’s HoT and Armor increase around the team is more beneficial in an AoE heavy phase where all teammates are taking consistent damage (ex. Burn phase in Dread Council).

Recklessness on Roaming Mend

With the rise of the almighty Critical rating in 4.0, using Recklessness on any heal that already benefits from a critical buff is questionable. Dark Heal with Force Bending has an increased 60% critical chance (in addition to the Critical on your gear). Innervate with Force Bending has a 25% increase to critical chance. Dark Infusion benefits from the Force Mystic set bonus, which increases its critical chance by 100%. The only significant heals worth left using Recklessness on is Roaming Mend and Unnatural Preservation. Unnatural Preservation has a 30 second cool down and only benefits the health of your raid frame if you yourself are taking damage. That leaves Roaming Mend. Apart from the process of elimination, Mend does the target switching work so you don’t have to.

Example:

If three targets take damage from a boss cleave (Main tank, Off tank & Melee Dps) but the main tank is still getting pummeled by boss damage, Roaming Mend, with Recklessness, used on the main tank first will crit to respond to the cleave damage and then crit on the person who needs healing the second most. While the charges of Mend go about the targets doing the healing needed, I remain targeted on the main tank as that is where the damage profile is currently being distributed.

The critical heal of Roaming Mend helped address past cleave & continuous boss damage and eliminated my need to target swap. Because I did not have to click the frame (target swap), I am more freely available to keep my eyes on the field, providing me raid awareness.

The only other abilities I would recommend Recklessness on is Dark Infusion (with Force Bending) followed by the instant-cast Dark Heal. This would be if you needed to focus on one target but PvE encounter’s single target damage is manageable without a cool down (ie. Recklessness). Not to mention the fact that if a single target needs that much healing, the long cast time leaves them in a dangerous place for way to long. More often than not, the situation you’ll find most pressure intense is when several targets require immediate attention, Roaming Mend does that for us, why not give it a boost.

Key Binding

Key binding important abilities is the most performance-increasing step you can take. Combined with an efficient UI, key binding allows a massive reduction in your reaction time to healing damage taken. When individuals send me videos to coach them, it is usually the first thing I’ll say if they aren’t already doing it. Now, I have met amazing players that mastered the art of clicking and to them I tip my hat. However, in my experience the majority of individuals cannot perform at an optimum level without them.

About the Author

In swtor, I go by Kalizo. I am currently one of the healers in Provectus and although I can play all three roles, my strength and passion lie in the sorc healer. It was my first end game character and the role I returned to after a short exploration into Dps, where I differentiated myself as one of the few Jugg Dps to obtain the Deposer of the Dread Masters title. I have raided on 4 different servers in both North America and in Europe, with some of the best players in the world. My philosophy towards healing is strongly accredited to my time in Zorz where I learned to never waste a gcd. I am lucky to have learned from the best and in turn, want to pay it forward.

  • AdjeYo

    Great guide, I just want to note that Consuming Darkness does in fact not consume your health, even when used without force surge stacks.

    • Oops thanks for that, just corrected it.

      • Dr_Nex

        It still says Consuming Darkness takes life?

  • amsdef

    no rotation? or no preffered utilities distribution?

    • AdjeYo

      There’s a list of all healing abilities and their uses, you can’t really have a set rotation for healing anyways. As for utilities, there’s commentary on utilities, but in the end what you pick isn’t super important.

    • Xzelsius

      healers should not have a fixed rotation….

    • Alice Frederick

      I can post my rotation I use for basic healing and burst healing if you’d like. While healers don’t have a fixed rotation they have rotations that work better than others.

  • Naq

    I have been healing since old school EQ, and in my old age, I find it odd that nobody talks about overheals. Even in my wow days, I remember new and upcoming crit spammers proudly linking their overall healing after fights, vying for my position as main healer some day, and our main tank Sicks would link overheals: Newtank 45% Naq 2%. I will be honest, it takes a long time and a great deal of familiarity with your tank to factor in overheals while deciding what cast comes next, or whether its time to add some dps, but I always find it a bit of a shame to read a healing guide that doesn’t even bring it up. I mostly do my own thing, I’ve found comfy numbers with my gear that suit my own style, and I measure my success in wipes, but I figured I would drop a note as food for thought. Why overheal when you can conserve and repurpose? In wow, it was adding shockadin dmg, now I use it for keeping my dots up and tossing the odd rock, but if folks are lucky enough to be in a static group, I would suggest giving it some mind. Crits are unexpected healing, and if you think about overheals alot, unexpected healing is overhealing, but I guess if you and your other healer aren’t 100% technically every heal is potentially overhealing with the overlap.

    Just my 2c. Ignore or think on it.

    • lore

      2% That is damn efficient, nice work!

    • tempt

      Especially in the olden WoW days overhealing was an important strategy because you couldn’t react to incoming spike damage quick enough otherwise.

      In SWTOR it’s a bit different but it’s still impossible to be a good healer while having only 2% overheals. Especially as a sorcerer you just don’t have the repertoire for it.

      Without crit you won’t have any surge and you will heal for about 9000 on a Dark Infusion while the tank takes 50k hits in this content.

      • Naq

        “impossible to be a good healer while having only 2% overheals”
        Implying throwing crap at the wall in desperation that some of it sticks is good healing ever, but still, I don’t expect anyone else to go out and immediately have 2% overhealing, but, being conscious of controlled crits, like the 2 piece bonus, or Recklessness 2 60% crit buffs, and using them properly and at the right health %’s will increase the benefit of them signifigantly when they aren’t wasted on unrealized overheals, instead of spam heals desperately hoping the RNG will keep your friends alive.

        • tempt

          Using Recklessness correctly should be clear to everyone. But how you keep track of the 30 second 15% chance of an autocrit and actually work that into your healing is beyond me. Obviously you can notice if it procs but how do you deliberately delay using abilities or align the crit with damage spikes to get the maximum use out of it?

          It seems to me the only way you can afford the luxury of little overheals and saving healing abilities until the optimal moment is to let your healing partner bear the load of responsibility.

  • Megacode

    Great post!! I have a Sage and Sorc so this definitely helps for both. Now I know as healers we don’t typically have a rotation but I was curious as to what heals most Sages/Sorcs are using. I typically am keeping bubbles on tanks and self while using all other heals when off gcd, with one exception. I’m typically not using Dark Infusion and Dark Heal (except instant cast)..I’m also pretty much saving Force Bending buff for Innervate and Roaming Mend. Just curious as to what the other Jedi/Sith healers are doing?? Thanks for the great post and tips 🙂

    Megacode

    • Naq

      Train your eye to see your 2 piece bonus buff, and hit anyone (pref tank) at 75% or lower with Dark Infusion, follow with instant Dark Heal.

    • Kalizo

      That is in line with what I end up doing as well. Force Bending on Innervate and Mend. Dark Infusion is rarely used however it is very beneficial as a precast for a big hit. An example of this is when Terror from Beyond does his scream on the tanks. Precasting a big Dark Infusion helps to respond to that damage very effectively.

  • j’oe

    “Mastery: This is your character’s main stat. It is found on almost every piece of gear you will attain.” i was about to bash this, but then the Relics nation attacked

    it is a good guide to read, althought i can decently play a sorc heal. i’m just impressed that heals can crit for 20k+!!!!!
    also, is there anything that you could add regarding gearing for PVE == PVP?

    • Kalizo

      There is another great healing guide focused on PvP. This one focuses specifically on PvE

      • j’oe

        ohh i think i missed cause a bunch of guides came out at same time and stuff about patch notes and the likes of it.. probably got bunked down quickly
        thanks for pointing it 😀

  • Seth Geco

    Critical stat should not be called the god stat, The same rules apply for critical max damage or in this case max healing. When measured in a parse stacking critical will cause diminishing returns. Meaning the more you stack the less effective it is.

    • Kalizo

      Have you done the analysis as to when the DR curve for Critical begins to fall? I’d be interested to see your calculations if you have. The combination of both stats (Crit & Surge) originally was thought to have a fairly generous DR curve. So much so that with our current point allotment that hitting major DR wouldn’t be as much an issue as in previous patches.

      If I am wrong, please show me your notes, I’ll adjust accordingly.

      • Hant

        If I recall, from my own TC, for Healers in general Critical becomes on par with Mastery/Power around 2000 points, give it or take (there are some differences between the three classes but this works as a ballpark). Since healers will definitely split over Crit and Alacr one way or the other, they will not meet the point where Crit starts to underperform (on the other hand differences in output between Crit and Alacr aren’t huge either so I have been suggesting to tweak them accordingly to preferance/style).

        In any case, the point is, anything like 1500-1600 crit is pretty safe and still ahead of Mastery/Power, even on a Sage (the “less crit friendly” of the 3 healers).

      • Seth Geco

        Great guide by the way, my intention was not trying to bash your hard work. I just don’t think critical in its current state was meant to be that OP/God. Main stat has always been Will/Mastery.

        Have you heard if Bioware plans to make any changes to this?

  • qwq

    Critical rating = 1534-1753 (38.29-39.76%) How?
    I am at 1393 Crit rating and that is 42.04 %

    • Kalizo

      I will look into this as soon as possible. There is a chance I may have taken to wrong number from my notes, or that we may be referencing different numbers. I’ll post back here with update.

      Thanks.

      • qwq

        yeah please do. ty 🙂

        • Hant

          My guess is that Melee crit chance was the one used for reference, not the Force one.

          Again, using my current gear as an example (almost full 224):
          1396crit – 42.5%
          1469crit – 43.0%

          1542crit – 43.6%

          1615crit – 44.1%

          (different amounts swaping augments alacrcrit back and forth)

    • Joe

      make sure you don’t have any buffs on… those are base numbers he’s giving, not buffed. I have 1445 crit rating for a 37.72% crit chance, buffed puts me well over 42%.

      • qwq

        Includes all class / companion buffs

        This is what what threw me off…

    • Moray

      Maybe you got more Mastery and it affects your Critical rating?

  • Hant

    About Critical and Force Potenty

    “Recklessness on Roaming Mend

    With the rise of the almighty Critical rating in 4.0, using Recklessness on any heal that already benefits from a critical buff is questionable. (…)”

    This isn’t correct. Although Wandering Mend is an acceptable choice for the use of Force Potenty, it’s not detrimental to use Force Potenty on an abilty that already benefits from a critical buff by any means since, one of the reasons why Critical is “almighty” now is the very fact that there is no cap to critical anymore: critical chance above 100% is turned into critical damage (surge). So the effect is now linear and uncapped. In terms of output, Force Potenty used on Deliverance beats slightly over Wandering Mend since each tick of Deliverance uses on charge as a matter of fact. It’s not a big difference by any means, but any of those choices are roughly on the very same level (with deliverance slightly ahead).

    Still, there are even better choices, although some of them are quite situational. FP on Force Mend (if you have the utility that buffs Force Mend up) gives the highest gain, though its only really valuable if you are very low on HP and need to top yourself out very quickly, in case you risk to take a very big hit soon due to some mechanic.

    Other very strong choice is Healing Trance: each channel only spends one stack no matter how many ticks crit. This gives to FP + Healing Trance, one of the best ratios (only FP+FM beats it but as discussed above is very situational). There is no side benefit from stacks anymore since you have plenty now and the generation is capped to 3 per channel anyway but still you get a very very strong benefit from the critically buffed heals on Healing Trance, with each stack affecting the whole channel and leaving you with another stack to apply to something else, lets say either Wandering Mend or Deliverance, the other strong choices.

    To be honest and since most choices are fairly close, in actual fights is quite hard to and not that meaninfull to micro-manage it. So I tend to use it on “whatever” but mostly on one of these three: WM, Del, HT (and seldomly Force Mend). To avoid: Benevolence (a smaller gain but still not a huge mistake) and foremost Rejuvenate (initial tick spends a stack and its a quite small base heal).

    • Hant

      Correction: I meant “each tick of Wandering Mend that crits will spend one stack of Force Potency”.

      • Hant

        Other alternative that went unmentioned (and was amongst those stituational uses), is to chain Deliverance and Benevolence for a very single target burst heal. In this case you have virtually full control over which target you are applying the critical buff / extra heal. Though the gain benevolence is a bit below on pair, you are gaining a bit in control on what/who you are giving the extra heal and make sure the crits land exactly on who you wanted on a single targeted burst act. All in all, there’s plenty of chances and in the end of the day, the differences are not that meaningfull, apart form situational uses that may benefit one choice over the other.

        • Kalizo

          “The only other abilities I would recommend Recklessness on is Dark Infusion (with Force Bending) followed by the instant-cast Dark Heal.” – First sentence of the last paragraph in the “Recklessness on Roaming Mend” section.

          You are correct in saying the choices are all very close. As I eluded to, relying on the crit pair of Dark Infusion / Deliverance & Dark Heal / Benevolence leave your target in limbo much to long. Healing Trance / Innervate is a great pick but I can up the Crit chance of innervate any time I want. Couple that with the Critical rating on my gear, my tics have a healthy chance of critically healing my chosen target.

          NiM in 4.0, (when healing is difficult) requires instant triage to damage. Delaying any thing puts you behind. I am not saying “Recklessness / Force Potency on Roaming Mend or die”, I am saying it is my favorite ability to pair with this cool down and here is the reason why.

          As I stated in the introduction of this guide, there are many ways to achieve the healing goal, this guide outlines only one of them. If situationally you feel Recklessness would be best suited on anther ability, you have the freedom to react as you see fit. My goal was to provide enough information to seemingly new players to the game so they could understand good habits. I knew there would be some opposition to this recommendation (why I gave it an entire section of explanation) from individuals who are already well-versed in this class/role. It’s to those individuals, (like yourself) that I would urge seeing merit in individual healing choices and styles. Theoretically, it may not produce the absolute most amount of HPS, but it does respond to a real need in a raid effectively keeping you in control of the damage.

          I appreciate the feedback and opinion.

          • Hant

            With all due respect, I’m pretty sure you are a very strong healer. My concerns are only about the guide and what readers may do out of it so I hope you don’t get me wrong.

            “Healing Trance / Innervate is a great pick but I can up the Crit chance of innervate any time I want.” – The reasoning here is strill pre-3.0 and will reinforce the wrong ideas about crit on the current context of the game, since you have been presenting as detrimental the use on abilities that were somehow previously buffed with crit already by other means. Which isn’t detrimental at all, actually it’s if anything, beneficial. It has side benefits for a very simple and understandable principle: there are no losses anymore (crit chance that goes for nothing) and base/previous high crit will mean often that you are not even gambling anymore, it’s turning into a sure bet.

            Giving an example on the best ability (apart for the very situational force mend) – Healing Trance. Even if you use rejuvenate just before, if you pop Force Potenty, the crit chance of Healing Trance will be of roughly (depends on actual character stats and other current buffs, let’s say, did the mastery relic proc’ed for one?): 45% + 25% + 60% = 130%. What doest this means is that every single tick of Healing Trance will crit – spending only one stack(!) – and the extra 30% of critical chance (which isn’t a chance anymore, it’s something that will happen for sure) is converted in net extra healing.

            To exemplify, on my current gear (apart from ongoing buffs these numbers will no vary that much):

            (a) Rej+FP+HT gives me 4 ticks of 7k heal points (total of ~28k) on a single target channeled ability;

            (b) Deliverance with two crits (old and new set proc’ing) wich will heal on a single hit for roughly 30-36k heal points (variance due to the base heal of the ability, not due to crit chance, since the crit is doomed to happen and to happen with tons of additional heal).

            I really feel that is important that people understand and embrace how Crit/Surge works now.

            Respectufully,
            Hant

            • Hant

              *meant pre-4.0, ofc.

              • Kalizo

                I agree with you that there should be an in-depth explanation of how Crit/Surge work now. The reason I did not include it was because I did not have the necessary calculations to do it justice. Including a small “tid-bit” may spur readers on to look for a more in-depth understanding. I will consider this, thank you.

                As for healing done, my argument focuses more on providing answers to “in-raid” scenarios and Roaming Mend alleviates pressure better then the two single target options you have outlined. However, my sentence structure does tend to favour a pre 4.0 mentality and in the interest of clarity, i may make revisions.

                Another thing I’d like to point out is over healing. In my experience, 100% + Crit (converted to surge) typically over heals my target. That goes against my philosophy of making every GCD count as the raid would be better served by me contributing in another way. Sometimes targets need all they can get, and that brings it back to “situational triage” but more often than not, raid-wide pressure is best alleviated by boosting Roaming Mend. It may not do the most healing, but it does answer the most amount of “needs” fastest.

              • Hant

                “Another thing I’d like to point out is over healing. In my experience, 100% + Crit (converted to surge) typically over heals my target.”

                Not quite. I would assume that Force Potency is reserved for eminent burst needs, not just because you can pump up some more HPS. Let’s say at tank is low and needs to be toped out. Even if you use the highest single target output ability, it heals for 30-36k wich is roughly 50% of a tank full health points pool. I find myself using benevolence right after 30k+ deliverances cause sometimes there’s still heal to be done on the very same target.

                Interestingly enough, due to lesser control over what you actually heal with the chosen ability, it’s your preferred mean of using FP that has higher chances of overhealing since if you use it on WM, the first two ticks will crit for sure. The first is the intended target, the second is any other and may or may not be useful (only one stack of FP will land on your priority target, if you only have one at the moment; if there is someone very low in the vicinity than it’s fine, the second stack will be spent there).

                At the end of the day, overhealing argument will favour abilities that you fully control like HT/Del/Ben over Wandering Mend (where you control the first tick but often not the second).

                Wandering mend is a huge tool at disposal of the class though. I don’t want that what I wrote to be misread into taking the ability into the ground and that everything else is better, it’s not the case: a) the ability itself is huge; b) force potency on it is still a valid choice (in most cases probably not the best though and in any case, as I stated before, differences are not of major concern; tbh my major concerns were over reading on how crit works and how the class and certain abilities work, namely under heavy crit chance scenarios).

              • Netris

                I’m also a strong fan of using FP on auto-crit Delivrance + Benevolence for a super crit Delivrance. And for the calculation behind those super crit, let say your Delivrance heals for 9k, let’s assume you have 40% crit chance and 70% surge. If you use FP on that auto-crit Delivrance, all your crit chance will be converted in surge so it’s 40% from your gear and 60% from FP. You’ll now have 70% surge + 100% so 140% surge.This Delivrance will now crit at 9k + 140% = 21.6k.

  • DerpDude

    I would argue about “Sap Strenght” “Oppressing Force” and “Haunted Dreams” being PvP talents.
    Depending on team setup…in Hard Mode FlashPoints, an instant cast Whirlwind is an exceptional “oh crap” button and Electrocute is practically a free “Energy Shield” for the tank every 50 seconds.
    Those have limited uses in Operations though.

    • Valenjinn

      Are good points mainly for Revanite Commanders, Corruptor Zero, maybe some help in adds in Operator IX, and few more fights with adds not immune to cc. Are very situational.

      • DerpDude

        Yea, they are situational…so it depends on the content being done and the team =)

  • Joe Blow

    Kalizo, can you post a pointer to your preferred UI? Since everyone needs to customize theirs, it would be very helpful to see some good examples. Thanks!

  • Bryan Hedrick

    These guides would be much more useful if they addressed both Pub and Imp classes instead of just one or the other.

    • Corwin

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  • Hexane

    Kal, I just studied your guide and now I’m ready to come heal for Provectus! Aww yeah!

  • ArchivusLegacy(Ebon Hawk)

    I just use Force Bending on CD followed by Innervate. If they are below 70% ill use Dark Heal/ Dark Infusion.

  • Bon Jovi
  • Fabian Nawroth

    i would like to add/change some things.

    in your damage-part you should add the slowing skill. this is the key-skill for a higher dps-rating. with luck (crit & miss) you could reach 3.5k dps as a healer (224/220 mixed-gear)

    and of course there always will be the relict-discussion. i was testing around a lot, with similar chars, different skills and similar raids. all said, that it is much better to heal with the crit-relict, instead of the mastery one.
    maybe the theorycrafting will tell you something different, but in similar raids i had a much better feeling with the crit-relict and also had a higher hps-rating. the more ehps you need, the better the crit-relict will work. especially if you heal a HM-raid alone, i would take the crit-relict.
    so i would just say, try it out and find your way.
    starparse says, that in average i have about 400hps more in a bossfight. but my ehps is much higher.

  • Eric Nelson

    Is there an updated guide for 4.5, or is it basically the same, which is better, sorc or operative?

  • Ken Hamlin

    Have these guides been updated since the changing of classes due to all of the latest updates? I’d also like to point out, that, these guides are just that, guides, they aren’t the guides to end all guides…. more ways to skin a cat and still get the job done. Just saying. Cheers!!

  • Rey927

    Thank you for this!!! New to the Sorc Healing…did Consul Healing back in the day. Does seem to have changed much in principle. Great guide!!!

  • Nemo

    Un bon guide car tu connais les principales caractéristiques du sorcier heal, mais certains points pouvant augmenter ton hps ou ta gestion de la force ne sont pas abordés.

    En clair, tu as encore des points à améliorer. On va prendre un exemple : la revivification doit se caster avec 2 afflux de force et non pas 3. Cela te permet de mieux gérer ta force et envoie le soin aussi rapidement qu’avec 3.

    Il y aurait encore beaucoup à dire, mais le travail apporté est de qualité, même si incomplet pour maximiser les performances du sorcier.

    Bon jeu !

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