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A friend just made me realize something.

Mages can heal physical damage right?

Why not just overcast (is that the word?) every spell and take physical damage, then overcast the heal. (Could be even more scary if the mage had first aid / medicine ).

Wouldn't this make a near unstoppable mage?
Drain damage used to be unaffected by healing magic.
It is not unaffected by healing magic. What Kavok describes is an absolutely legal, but somewhat dangerous tactic.
Except for the time required to make the heal spell permanant.
Even with lots of healing, physical drain hurts. Not everyone has fun playing a BDSM mage with heavy emphasis on the S.
What makes you assume that stun drain hurts any less? Both is equally incapacitating.
one can kill you....
QUOTE (Oracle @ Dec 19 2005, 03:53 AM)
What makes you assume that stun drain hurts any less? Both is equally incapacitating.

It's true that the intenstiy of the pain can be the same whether the damage is stun or it's physical. However, the pain of physical damage has the potential to be with the character for days, the pain of stun damage will be gone in hours.

Of course, days can turn into minutes when you look at the fact that physical damage can be affected by the heal spell, and minutes do start to look better than hours for those boxes of stun that can't be healed, but it still comes across as getting into the trading pain for power far above and beyond what the average magic user goes through already.

At least to me anyway.
I believe stun damage can kill also, eventually anyways. smile.gif

This also has the potential for some interesting teams.

A grade 3 intitate shaman with his two apprentices.

He overcasts everying sacrificing his overall health for sheer power.

The two apprentices focus soley on casting support and healing spells on the shaman.

QUOTE (Kavok)
I believe stun damage can kill also, eventually anyways. smile.gif

Yes, but it has to overflow through the physical column to get you there.
The most important thing is that it's not a predetermined number of boxes healed. You need hits. You could cast that spell that does physical damage, then roll a Glitch or Critical Glitch and since you can only magically heal a set of wounds once, not be recovering for days from that spell. I'd say go for it, the negatives far outweigh the positives in this case.

Crusher Bob
Just get a trauma damper, then you can be addicted to the rush of endorphins that the damper releases when you take major trauma. Need a fix? Cut your forearm off with a chainsaw and heal it back on. The damage fades away in mere minutes but the rush can last for hours.
The overcast-then-heal trick has been around for a while. It initially seems like an exploit, but you're basically trading Stun boxes for time.

As Frosty mentions, the Heal spell has to be sustained for a number of rounds equal to double the Physical boxes you're healing (working from faulty memory). Cast a Force 10 Manabolt with your Magic 5 and you're soaking 5P. Let's say you soak only 2 boxes of that, and you take 3P net drain. Then you cast Force 5 Heal with a Drain of 1S, needing 6 rounds to get rid of most (if not all) of the Physical and easily soaking the Heal's drain. Any hits over 3 on the Heal and you're reducing the sustain time by 1 round.

If you want to make doubly sure the Physical goes away, throw some First Aid on before the Heal spell. That's adding more time, too.

So overcasting Big Whammy spells with the intention of bleeding out of your eyes and healing it later is possible, but really useful only when A) you're in a desperate gonna-die-anyway situation or B) you know you have time to knit yourself back together. It's the middle ground between those extremes that it doesn't work out so well.
You may well have to overcast the Heal spell to get all the drain, too. Your force 12 Powerbolt starts out with 7 drain, this is worse if you use an area or indirect attack spell. You'll need a minimum Force equal to the amount of drain you want to heal - leading to more drain. It's a vicious circle, really. This trick might have been okay in previous editions, but nowadays it's just asking for it. Tell the guy to buy a frickin' spell focus and be done with it.
The optimal ideal for that is Stunball (taking advantage of lower drain, lower damage tracks and not targeting body, a bargain)
Overcast it at F10 - Drain is 6P.
Will+Log or Cha, probably around 10 for the obvious twink we have here. We will discount any bonuses that you can get for foci or spirit assistance.
Average roll is 3 hits, causing 3 physical damage.
The heal spell will have a drain of 1S, easily negated. Need 3 hits on your dice pool of 9-10 (depending on if you go sorcery group, or spellcasting 5). Again with no outside bonuses, that is a 3 hits, healing all the damage and ending up not taking any downside from the spellcasting other than the 2 turns required to make heal permanent. (2x the drain value of 1)

So you can drop F10 stunballs all over the place and on average you will take nothing more than two extra turns to get over it.

It is worse if you add mentor bonuses, fetish and foci, spirit assistance. It is really sick.
Just wondering: what exactly happens if an enemy mage counterspells the healing spell?

the damage comes back?
Currently, the trick of healing physical damage with healing spells is chalked up to "probably legal", as it isn't very clearly addressed. How or if the damage of drain is different from normal damage is not clear. As such, individual gamemasters are free to rule that magic spells can or can't heal physical drain. As has been pointed out, dropping Force 9 Stunblasts on people is pretty exciting even if you have to heal it normally.

Hopefully, the methods of healing Drain will be more clearly addressed in Street Magic.

Doc Byte
Doing this kind of trick more often puts a mage dangerously close to blood magic if you ask me.
Fortunately, most good spells are dangerous in the drain, so if you time it badly you get shot once after a spell and immediately die or hit overflow. THe more friendly spells aren't as severe.

Any spell that's dispelled is merely that- and I believe you suffer drain as though you had succeeded anyways.
Umm. Actually, that is entirely wrong. (The part about any good spell having nasty drain)

Arguably the best combat spells in the game, Stunball and Stunbolt both have very reasonable drain.
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