Fade in, on a lone hero rushing into battle. Slowly your team comes into view, surrounding you, a towering charge of strength and power. The enemy team begins to fire at you and you hear those dreaded three words that send a shiver down your spine…”I need healing”.
Fast forward and the messages are still flying in. You hear, “I need healing” everywhere you turn and you want to scream that you are but it would just get drowned out. The struggles of support mains in games like Overwatch, Paladins, Battleborn and every other MOBA type game you care to mention, are real. We play hard trying to bolster the team and provide assistance but we are blamed for a loss or we didn’t try nearly as hard to heal everyone.
Let us look at the true facts of the matter, teams need to support their supports. They are not invincible nuggets that will ghost around the battlefield and appear when you need them the most. If you ditch them and expect them to patch you up from afar when you get ambushed by the enemy team or make a dumb in-game mistake, you are one of the problems.
In games like Paladins: Champions of the Realm and Overwatch our beloved supports have cooldowns as well, and entire teams to worry about, both their own and the enemy. Quite simply put, they have a lot going on. More than the damage dealing, kill hunting heroes have to worry about. All with the added stress that allied mistakes are blamed on the supports…at least some of the time.
A good support can be the boon of the team, putting them back into the battle sooner and never letting them fall. In the words of the beloved Mercy, “Heroes Never Die”. A support who is quite self-aware and never backs off the healing is a true asset, so if you see them trying to support you and the team, do not harass them. One single thing to note: HEALERS CANNOT OUTHEAL A WHOLE TEAMS WORTH OF DPS. If you jump out into the open and try to solo kill everyone and you die, it is the result of a miscalculated decision on your part, not crappy support.
I should expand on a matter I addressed lightly earlier in this post, that while support characters do have a fair bit of survivability, they are not invincible, and they are prime targets for any heavy hitting, medium hitting or light hitting character. Take the support out and the team cannot be healed, and begin to pick off the others, one by one. Let me throw an example your way; in Paladins, there are certain champions known as Flankers, which to put it quite simply, are designed to harass and kill the enemy team from behind, above, below wherever. These champions move quickly and can come out of nowhere to end your life.
The Flankers absolutely love tearing apart support champs, to varying degrees of success, which will then allow the rest of the enemy team to eliminate your allies. Imagine, if one or two of your team covered the ass of the support, and helped them fight off the Flanker or whoever is trying to take them out. The support will stay alive and it will allow them to keep healing, rather than waiting for a respawn amid a swarm of ‘Need Healing’ messages.
But that isn’t to say there aren’t people out there who are just bad at playing support. The simple truth of it is, you’ll have people who are trying to learn how to be better, or are getting torn up or are just bad. A good support is going to try their best to help you through the match and well, a bad one is not going to heal you consistently no matter how much you spam, ‘I Need Healing’.
To all my fellow Support players out there, keep holding the line and protecting your assorted teams. You are the unsung heroes of the gaming world and if people mess with you, you can always simply not heal them until they learn. Works for me.