4e Healing

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So I know the healing surges thing has been beaten to death time and again.

I'm wondering what you all think about this setup.

 To clarify: I'm NOT asking the Character optimization boards, i'm asking you as DM's and players.

Situation: Party is level 26 (now lv. 27).  We are running through the H/P/E Series. (Keep on shadowfell to Prince of Undeath).  They just finished Ghoul King (E2).  Due to a mismanagment, on both player and my part, they were at a point in the game where they were to go to the final battle, but were nearly out of healing surges.... 

...but they have a crap ton of potions.  My party doesn't use potions usually because of the requirement that they use a healing surge inorder to be effective and with their ridiculous CON scores their healing surges are better than potions anyway, especially at these high levels. 

Potential Solution: I'm considering as an alternative ruling, to allow potions to be used surgeless after two milestones.  I allowed it this past session and even then they were hurting by the time the final blow was delivered.  (3 of 5 players unconscious). 

What do you think?
Probably fine. Better than letting them just rest before the fight. Not as good as allowing them to lose the fight, with some cool form of non-lethal failure the group came up with. Or just death, followed by failure, if they prefer that.

If I have to ask the GM for it, then I don't want it.

The main issue with potions is the action economy. 

Free hand - 2 minors (draw, drink)
2h weapon - Free, 2 minors, free (Hold in one hand, draw, drink, hold in both hands)
2 weapons or weapon/shield - Free, 3 minors (drop, draw, drink, pick up)

There is rarely a time when it is worth it. 
Back to Basics - A Guide to Basic Attacks You might be playing DnD wrong if... "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former." Albert Einstein
The main issue with potions is the action economy. 

Free hand - 2 minors (draw, drink)
2h weapon - Free, 2 minors, free (Hold in one hand, draw, drink, hold in both hands)
2 weapons or weapon/shield - Free, 3 minors (drop, draw, drink, pick up)

There is rarely a time when it is worth it. 

While he's houseruling things, he should houserule this sort of thing. I can't believe it was intended to be that involved.

"Minor: I take a potion."
"Okay, mark it off."

If I have to ask the GM for it, then I don't want it.

another option is of course telling your players about potion banderols or whatever they are called.  A mundane item that's like a potion belt accross the chest that allows to draw and drink a potion on the belt in one minor action.
"Non nobis Domine Sed nomini tuo da gloriam" "I wish for death not because I want to die, but because I seek the war eternal"

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Except you still need a hand free to do it.
Back to Basics - A Guide to Basic Attacks You might be playing DnD wrong if... "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former." Albert Einstein
I would suggest the following houserules:
-a potion takes one minor action to drink, regardless of whether it is in hand or not.
-any items or feats(such as quickdraw) that would make drinking a potion into one minor action, instead make it a free action, on your turn. Once per round when aplicable.

for healing potions.
- a healing potion costs one surge and always restores 1/5th of your max hp.
(slightly less than 1 surge value, because they are consumable items, and to avoid stepping on the toes of other heal options.)
-If you are out of healing surges, a healing potion restores 1/8th of your max HP.
-you can drink a number of healing potions per day equal to you max number of healing surges +2.
(worst case scenario, every surge for that day is used on a potion, you drop to 1 hp with no surges, and can then get 1 more surge value in HP from surgless potion healing. Best case senario, you use all your surges on non-potion healing, you reach 1hp, andcan get about twice your max HP in surge free potion healing.)

The net result is that healing potions are easier to use, but slightly worse than a whole surge, to deter abuse. If they run out of surges, they can still heal themselves, but the # per day limit keeps them for having "unlimited" surge free healing.
thanks for the advice everyone.  It's good to have some other heads to bounce ideas off of.
Except you still need a hand free to do it.

Which is a free action, so keeping track of it slows the game down for no good benefit.

If that's an issue, just make taking a potion (including drawing it and freeing a hand) a standard action, like using second wind or making a Heal check.

If I have to ask the GM for it, then I don't want it.

Except you still need a hand free to do it.

Which is a free action, so keeping track of it slows the game down for no good benefit.

If that's an issue, just make taking a potion (including drawing it and freeing a hand) a standard action, like using second wind or making a Heal check.



It's only a free action if you are using a 2h weapon. If you are using a single weapon and shield or two single weapons, then you need a free action to drop and a minor to pick up.
Back to Basics - A Guide to Basic Attacks You might be playing DnD wrong if... "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former." Albert Einstein
Except you still need a hand free to do it.

Which is a free action, so keeping track of it slows the game down for no good benefit.

If that's an issue, just make taking a potion (including drawing it and freeing a hand) a standard action, like using second wind or making a Heal check.

It's only a free action if you are using a 2h weapon. If you are using a single weapon and shield or two single weapons, then you need a free action to drop and a minor to pick up.

He's already houseruled healing all to heck. Houseruling an ability to hold two weapons in one hand, or in a shield hand, or under one's arm or tossing the weapon in the air long enough to take the potion, is mild by comparison.

Keeping track of what people are holding is not a worthwhile use of time, in the face of roaring complaints about how slow combat is. It should be houseruled in general, not just in this case, as not mattering.

If I have to ask the GM for it, then I don't want it.

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