All-Heal Defender Guide by Pakado Revival

Version: 1.0 | Updated: 07/23/04 | Printable Version

City of Heroes  
All Heal Empathy Defender FAQ  
By: pakado revival  
Section Guide:  
A- Creation of FAQ  
B- Intro  
C- Picking Your Powers  
D- Slotting Your Powers  
E- Playing Your Healer Well  
F- Organizing Inspirations  
G- Grouping and Leveling Up  
H- Citation  
Section A: FAQ Creation Log  
July 13- Researched FAQ information, checked info against City of Heroes 
July 14- Started FAQ, typed through Section E.  
July 15- Typed Sections F and G, began Citations. Fixed Section E some.  
July 18- Edited guide for grammar and spelling.  
July 21- Edited Section G, Section C, and wrote Section H. Guide 
Section B: Introduction to the All Heal Defender  
In almost every great MMORPG, there is a must-have class for a good 
parties. Many would even suggest that there is a particular class that a 
group requires before anything good can actually be accomplished. In City 
of Heroes, there is more then one type of character needed to get a group 
up on its feet, but one that most any player will agree is needed is a 
good Defender.  
But why an Empathy Defender? Better yet, why an All Heal Empathy? Why you 
Empathy Defenders have the most potent, straightforward healing abilities 
of any Power Set in City of Heroes. Makes sense, eh? Now imagine an 
Empathy Defender with no real attack power. Well aside from the fact that 
no Defender will be able to attack with the quality of pretty much any 
other Archetype, an All Heal Defender (as the name suggests) only uses 
heals and buffs that help his team. Wasting no points on useless attack 
abilities from his Secondary Power Set, an All Heal defender has the 
option of putting all his slots into his heals and buffs, and only 
picking buffs and heals as his powers. This means additional Power Pool 
skills and a wide array of heals attained at a lower level then an 
"impure" Empathy Defender.  
The All Heal Empathy Defender can be the most capable group member in 
CoH. However, this type of Defender requires a bit of planning to 
effectively build. That's where this guide comes in.  
Section C: Picking Your Powers  
As has been said before, you will focus mainly on the powers in your 
Empathy set. On second thought, "focus mainly" is a massive 
understatement. From your Secondary Power Set, you will take (along with 
the Lv1 required power) roughly 3 total powers, and thats dependent on 
what your Secondary Power Set is in the first place. Some may choose to 
take 2 powers in their Secondary Power Set, some maybe just the first. 
The most important thing though is that the powers you choose are not 
just normal attack abilities. Maybe take a snipe so you can pull an 
enemies while in a group, or an AOE with a secondary effect. DO NOT, 
however, take a simple attack ability that's sole purpose is damage. That 
betrays the idea of a All Heal Defender at its most simplistic of roots: 
to be a healer.  
The most important thing to remember is that you are the support of your 
team. You need to pick the powers that will benefit everyone in your 
group first and foremost. To be among the top healers of CoH you will 
require your healing powers ASAP. That means getting(in almost all cases) 
a heal power before a pool. Nothing tricky going on here, just put 
healing first and you'll be good.  
Here's what I'm lining up as a god choice for powers as an excellent 
healer. I'll explain why as necessary:  
Lv1 Choice for Empathy: Healing Aura. Its a bit weak without slots, but 
at such a low level its the only thing you might need. As you get more 
slots in it you'll thank yourself for not tossing this aside.  
Lv2 Choice for Empathy: Heal Other. Not much to say, its another must 
Lv4 Choice for Empathy: Absorb Pain. An extremely powerful heal without a 
single slot in it. Great for emergencies. I can't even count the amount 
of debt I have saved people with this skill.  
Lv6 Choice for Empathy: Resurrect! Hopefully you really wont need this 
skill that much, but its a must have either way. It does what you think 
it does, no way around getting this skill. Skip the Power Pool for just 
one level, I promise it'll make sense.  
Lv8 Choice for Power Pool: Teleport Friend is a good choice, as is 
Hasten. Preference is really key here, as you don't really need either 
quite yet. Skip Clear Mind for a bit, you don't need it for quite a 
Lv10 Choice for Power Pool: Get TP Friend or Hasten, depending on what 
you got the previous level. You're gonna want both before Lv12.  
Lv12 Choice for Empathy: Fortitude. Awesome skill right here. Great for 
Duo's. This combined with some skills from the Leadership Pool can boost 
your group a great deal.  
Lv14 Choice for Power Pool: TRAVEL POWER! Get Teleport for its high range 
of control. It should do you fine for a while, but don't expect too much 
of it since most don't know how to use it effectively.  
Lv16 Choice for Power Pool: Here we see the arrival of the Leadership 
Pool. Take Maneuvers, as it easily makes any team more efficient.  
Lv18 Choice for Empathy: Recovery Aura. Immense cool down on this thing, 
but its great for healing your ally's Endurance in the middle of a big 
Lv20 Choice for Empathy: Clear Mind. By now status effects finally get 
REALLY annoying, and a quick cure for this is necessary.  
Lv22 Choice for Power Pool: Time for your second Travel Power. Get Super 
Speed, you won't be disappointed.  
Lv24 Choice for Secondary Power Set: Fitness Pool's passive run speed 
Lv26 Choice for Empathy: Regeneration Aura. Great for quick healing 
between battles and lowering your team's downtime.  
Lv28 Choice for Power Pool: Fitness Pool's passive Health Regeneration 
Lv30 Choice for Power Pool: Time for Fitness Pool's passive Endurance 
Lv32 Choice for Empathy: Adrenalin Boost. PURELY AWESOME for Duos. As you 
can imagine, this power when used on a powerful scrapper or blaster means 
that leveling will go real quick for a good while. Great when used before 
a real tough battle.  
Lv35 Choice for Power Pool: Leadership Pool's Tactics should do real 
nicely here. Quite helpful when killing mobs 2+ levels higher then your 
Section D: Slotting Your Powers  
Slotting your powers is probably exactly what you would expect it to be. 
Fairly simple, just six slot most heals and such and get reduction times 
down on a few. One quick tip, try not buying any Dual Origins until level 
17 or 18, it really leaves you with cash to spare. I Maxed out all my 
powers at Lv18 with Dual Origins and had about 20k left over. Here's a 
step-by step guide to slotting up those bad-ass heals you're getting:  
a. What to put in a power's inherent slot------------------------------- 
Empathy Powers:  
-Heal Aura: Heal  
-Heal Other: Heal  
-Absorb Pain: Heal  
-Resurrect: Endurance Cost  
-Clear Mind: Time Reduction  
-Fortitude: Endurance Cost  
-Recovery Aura: Time Reduction  
-Regeneration Aura: Time Reduction  
-Adrenalin Boost: Time Reduction  
Other Powers:  
-Rest: Time Reduction  
-Sprint: Run Speed  
-Recall Friend: Endurance Cost  
-Teleport: Endurance Cost  
-Maneuvers: Defense Buff  
-Tactics: Accuracy Buff  
-Hasten: Time Reduction  
-Super Speed: Run Speed  
b. Step-by-step slotting process---------------------------------------- 
Lv3: Slot Heal Aura twice (1 End Cost, 1 Heal)  
Lv5: Slot Heal Other twice (1 Time Reduction, 1 Heal)  
Lv7: Slot Heal Aura twice (2 Heal)  
Lv9: Slot Heal Other twice (2 Heal)  
Lv11: Slot Heal Aura once (1 Heal), Heal Other once (1 Heal)  
Lv13: Slot Fortitude twice (1 Defense Buff, 1 Accuracy Buff)  
Lv15: Slot Teleport twice (2 End Cost)  
Lv17: Slot Tactics twice (2 Accuracy Buff)  
Lv19: Slot Hasten twice (2 Time Reduction)  
Lv21: Slot Fortitude twice (2 Accuracy Buff)  
Lv23: Slot Maneuvers twice (2 Defense Buff)  
Lv25: Slot Absorb Pain once (1 Heal), Maneuvers once (1 Defense Buff)  
Lv27: Slot Fortitude once (1 Defense Buff), Clear Mind once (1 Resistance 
Lv29: Slot Tactics once (1 Accuracy Buff), Maneuvers once (1 Defense 
Lv31: Slot Recovery Aura thrice (3 Time Reduction)  
Lv33: Slot Regeneration Aura thrice (3 Time Reduction)  
Lv34: Slot Recovery Aura twice (2 End Recovery), Absorb Pain once (1 
Lv36: Slot Adrenaline Boost thrice (3 Time Reduction)  
Lv37: Slot Regeneration Aura twice (2 Heal), Absorb Pain once (1 Heal)  
Lv40: Slot Adrenaline Boost twice (2 Time Reduction), Absorb Pain once (1 
c. Final results for slotting your powers------------------------------- 
-Heal Aura: 6 slots- 1 End Cost, 5 Heals  
-Heal Other: 6 slots- 1 Time Reduction, 5 Heals  
-Absorb Pain: 4 Slots- 4 Heals  
-Resurrect: 1 Slot- 1 End Cost  
-Clear Mind: 2 Slots- 1 Time Reduction, 1 Resistance Buff  
-Fortitude: 6 Slots- 2 Defense Buff, 3 Accuracy Buff, 1 End Cost  
-Recovery Aura: 6 Slots- 3 Time Reduction, 3 End Recovery  
-Regeneration Aura: 6 Slots- 3 Time Reduction, 3 End Recovery  
-Adrenalin Boost: 6 Slots- 6 Time Reduction  
Other Powers:  
-Rest: 1 Slot, Time Reduction  
-Sprint: 1 Slot, 1 Run Speed  
-Recall Friend: 1 Slot, 1 Endurance Cost  
-Teleport: 3 Slots, 3 Endurance Cost  
-Maneuvers: 4 Slot, 4 Defense Buff  
-Tactics: 4 Slot, 4 Accuracy Buff  
-Hasten: 3 Slots, 3 Time Reduction  
-Super Speed: 1 Slot, 1 Run Speed  
Section E: Playing Your Healer Well  
The most important thing about your healer is not the high level 
enhancements or amazing array of powers, it actually rests mainly on your 
actual healing abilities and tactics. Never mass your Healing Aura unless 
at least 3 people in your group (assuming the total amount of people in 
the group exceed 4.) are taking damage at a steady rate. If an ally drops 
into the yellow, quickly select him and hit your Absorb Pain, it'll save 
a ton of endurance compared to using Heal Other two times on the same 
target. Always keep your Target window on the person that seems to be 
holding the most aggro and therefore taking the most damage. Use buffs 
and auras appropriately. Fortitude should be refreshed generally between 
two of your team's lead damage dealers or tankers as often as possible, 
but ideally not mid-battle so that you can conserve endurance for using 
your healing powers.  
Soloing is not your friend with this build.  
Make a good amount of Blasters and Scrappers as friends, they come in 
handy when you need experience but don't want he hassle of healing a 
whole group. When looking to group you should make it obvious that you 
are only going to heal, that usually gets the attention of the more 
serious TF an power leveling teams.  
Section F: Organizing Inspirations  
Inspirations are easy but they need a section. Basically you don't really 
need any until about Lv15, but its good to have some Catch a Breaths in 
there for emergencies. Also get one resurrect in there and a few health, 
but remember not to use the health insp's after Absorb Pain, as they will 
have no effect. Distribute Accuracy, Defense, and Damage buffs to your 
Scrappers, Tankers, and Blasters to effectively make use of them, as you 
alone cannot.  
Section G: Grouping and Leveling Up  
You are the apex of Empathy builds and hold supremacy over all attacking 
Defenders within a group (assuming you know how to handle your endurance 
and such well.) DO NOT SETTLE FOR A BAD GROUP. In a good group of 2-4 you 
should at least be killing things one level higher then you, and if your 
with a Scrapper or two you could probably take enemies 2 levels higher. 
In a group of 8 its not worth the experience unless you are taking things 
2 levels higher then you. Groups of 8 are overrated and generally not the 
best for racking up good EXP, but may be necessary in some TFs.  
At low levels (2-10) get a Scrapper or Blaster to Duo with you an kill 
anything 1 level above or equal to your level. Between levels 10-18 you 
can continue Duo killing with a Scrapper or Blaster, but small groups may 
work better for killing 5th Column, Tsoo, or Clockwork for missions. It 
may be beneficial to make a lasting party with a single Scrapper. Within 
one day of playing with a good Scrapper or blaster, you should be able to 
get up to Lv12. Don't get into a group of more then 5 between levels 2-
10. Thats just stupid. There is no reason that a group of 8 will be 
helpful until you get to the Positron TF, so make sure your lead stops at 
a mid-range level rather then waiting for that 3rd controller to join 
your 7 person group in Perez Park. At higher levels, go for the same 
thing in groups. By Lv15 you should go for your first Task Force, but 
make sure everyone knows that this is a several hour commitment. You can 
hope to be Lv17 at least by the end of it.  
Here's a fast guide on where to go for good EXP from Lv2-30:  
-Notice- This is where I level my characters. This section is all 
opinion, and these places may not work for you to level up in as much as 
they worked for me. If these don't work, then figure out where to go 
Lv2-5: Stick to Galaxy City and Atlas Park. Stay clear of Vahzilok and 
Clocks if possible, as they both do a bit more damage then the Hellions 
and Skulls.  
Lv5-9: My advice is to stay in Kings Row until at least Lv8. By Lv9 you 
should notice there isn't anything higher then you, signaling its time to 
Lv9-14: Stick to Steel Canyon. Perez Park is a breeding ground for bad 
situations considering how many new players jump at the idea of their 
first Danger Zone. The only thing easy to rack up here for a Defender of 
your level is debt, and thats not for you. Back in Steel, avoid 5th 
Column and Tsoo if you are on a Duo, they are tougher then Outcasts. You 
can always try your luck in Perez trying for a Hydra-hunting team, but 
its more risky then hunting in Steel.  
Lv14-18: Level to 15 in Steel then head over to Positron for your 
Defender's first TF. Ideally get a team of 6 with 2 Blasters, a 
Forcefields Defender, and 2 Scrappers. Make sure they know what they are 
getting into.  
Lv18-21: Do Missions with Lv18-20 enemies until level 21, then head over 
to Dark Astoria. Stay away from anything too risky, and be very aware of 
your location on the map. Going too deep can be a problem when its time 
to log off.  
Lv21-29: Stick to Dark Astoria until level 25, at which case you can 
either stay leveling in Astoria to level 29 or go to Independence Port 
until level 29.  
Lv29+: Brickstown time. CAREFUL please! Get a solid group with some nice 
players and you should be fine. From then on you can level around, but 
I'm too lazy at this point to detail and find out where you should level 
Remember not to get ahead of your group. You will likely be the most 
vulnerable player on your team, so avoid being the first attacked. Even 
if you are the leader, have a Scrapper go first in line. Since you won't 
be attacking mid battle, keeping aggro off you should be easy, but don't 
get caught off guard by an enemy's hits. Always keep a steady tanking 
player, wether it be a Tanker or Scrapper, so that using your big heals 
wont get too complicated.  
Section H: Citation  
Information gathered from:  
-The City of Heroes Play Manual  
-The City of Heroes Portal at  
Thanks to Game FAQs for their forums, and Cryptic Studios for this game.