Healing In ESO
In Elder Scrolls Online healing is basically regarded as “negative damage” where the target receives Health. There are lots of heals in ESO, including self-heals and ally-heals, and healing is a fundamental part of the game so it’s important to understand healing mechanics. You don’t have to be a designated healer to heal yourself or your allies!
What Is Healing
In ESO, healing is the process of restoring Health to yourself and / or your allies. In most situations this comes from abilities, although there are some other sources of healing like potions and item sets. There are really three kinds of healing abilities in ESO – ground area of effect heals, target-based smart heals and self heals. In these two categories there are instant heals and heal over time effects.
Ground AoE Heals
These kind of heals include abilities like Grand Healing (Restoration Staff) and Blessing of Protection (Restoration Staff). They are cast on the ground and cover a specified area. They heal targets in that area for a specified time and a specified amount. In the case of Grand Healing, the spell lasts 3 seconds and covers a circle area with a radius of 8 meters.
Most area of effect heals effect a maximum of 6 targets and if there are more targets in the area the ones with the lowest Health are prioritised.
The other type of healing, smart heals, automatically finds the lowest Health ally nearby and effects them. There are no directly targeted heals in ESO like in previous games where you have to target specific players to heal them. Some examples of smart heals include Regeneration (Restoration Staff) and Rushed Ceremony (Templar). These smart heals are cast instantly and automatically find the lowest Health ally (which includes the caster) in the abilities range.
There are some forms of healing which can only effect the caster and will not effect allies. The best example is potions, which only effect the drinker of the potion of course. There are some abilities which also only effect the caster like Dragon Blood (Dragonknight). These kind of heals are not common as most heals will either effect the caster and allies, or will simply find the lowest Health ally in range including the caster.
The strength of your heals (the amount of Health a heal restores) is calculated in much the same way as damage is calculated.
If a heal ability uses Magicka then it scales up with Spell Damage, Max Magicka and uses Spell Critical.
If a heal ability uses Stamina then it scales up with Weapon Damage, Max Stamina and uses Weapon Critical.
You’ll find that most heal abilities in ESO use Magicka, including all Restoration Staff and Templar heals. There are some heals which do use Stamina though, like Vigor (Alliance War).
The Restoration Staff is the typical weapon of choice for a player that wants to heal. It is also a common choice if you just want to access some healing spells even though you are not a designated healer. The reason it is a great choice for healers is two-fold, first it provides access to a dedicated Skill Line of healing spells, and secondly it lets you restore Magicka after each fully charged Heavy Attack. You can also restore resources with other weapons after Heavy Attacks, but the Restoration Staff has a passive called Cycle of Life which increases the amount of Magicka restored.
The Restoration Staff basically allows any player to become a healer, especially in the lower Levels. As the game gets more difficult more abilities from other Skill Lines might be required as well.
The Restoration Staff deals damage with Light and Heavy Attacks, it’s called a Restoration Staff only because its Skill Line consists of healing spells, not because it directly restores Health with Light and Heavy Attacks.
The Templar Class is often mentioned with regards to healing and healers because they have an entire Skill Line called Restoring Light which is dedicated to healing and supporting allies. This gives Templars the opportunity to be great healers! It is possible for the other Classes to be great healers, as well, with access to the Restoration Staff Skill Line and various other healing spells throughout the other Skill Lines.