The White Mage: Great Ally or Useless Party Member

In any game where you have to build a team, there are always different classes that you put together to make the perfect team. These classes range from close combat heavy hitting tanks, to long ranged magic using wizards. There are a multitude of different class but that one that no one ever seems to want to use it the white mage. The white mage, or sometimes know as a healer class, is viewed by some as a useless class because their powers mostly consist of healing other team members. Some do not like this because normally a white mage as lower attack power and therefor, cannot do a significant amount of damage to enemies. Although this class is not a powerhouse, it does have its strengths. In most games, white mages have very high defense, this is in case they do see combat. They might not be able to dish out a lot of damage but they can take a hit and stand back up afterwards. White mages almost always have abilities that help them dodge attacks. Even if a white mage gets cornered, their abilities help make sure they will not take damage. In this article I will be focusing on the white mage classes from Final Fantasy X and Fire Emblem Awakening.

In Final Fantasy X every playable character has the potential to learn white mage abilities. Although anyone in your party can become a healer, there is only one character that starts out on the white mage track. The farther she progresses down this track, the higher her defense and evasion becomes. Even though her character cannot deal out more than forty points of damage when she is at her strongest, which is a small amount compared to the rest of the team, I use her in almost every fight. She has to ability to nullify any elemental power with her nul-element spell and can even raise the defense of the whole team with protect or shell. Whenever I get into any boss fight I use the white mage character to bolster my team and make sure they do not lose all their health. This is an example of a really useful white mage class.

In Fire Emblem Awakening there are three types of healers. The first is the normal cleric class. The cleric has the ability to heal its allies. The cleric’s best attribute is its evasion skill. Although the cleric can sometimes dodge attacks, they have poor defense. This is an example of a poor white mage because all they can do is heal. They cannot take a hit without being knocked out and when they encounter an enemy, they are not likely to dodge the on coming attack.

The second white mage class in Fire Emblem Awakening is a cleric that rides a horse. This form of cleric is a little bit better then the normal cleric, because for some reason the horse gives the cleric extra evasion. This greatly increases the ability and likelihood the cleric will dodge an oncoming attack, which it severely lacked this ability before. The mounted cleric class is quite useful because they are fantastic healers as well as having the ability to dodge an attack. This makes them less likely to be knocked out for the rest of the battle.  

The final and most useful form of the cleric is the war cleric. In this form the cleric losses the horse but again the ability to use an axe. Although this cleric becomes able to fight off enemies, it is a difficult class to use. You get used to having your healers never engage in combat and now they can fight back. It takes a while to get the strength and defense but once the healer is ready to fight they become a powerhouse. War clerics are strong white mages but they are also not just white mages. This type of white mage is hard to use because some people are not sure wither to use them as healers or use them as a warrior.

White mage can be a hassle or they can be the most useful members on your team.

  1 comment for “The White Mage: Great Ally or Useless Party Member

  1. noahdking
    July 24, 2015 at 11:14 am

    This was a good topic, I find it interesting because it seems that not only do people generally not opt for the white mage class, but that most games actually make them an unappealing and seemingly strategically disadvantaged players, when in fact there are few things more strategically advantageous than having a soldier who is harder to hit, more resilient, and has the ability to heal him/herself as well as his/her teammates. Perhaps people choose the more aggressive classes in part because it is easier to both see and make your own progress, maybe its because people prefer engaging the enemy rather than slowly weakening them. maybe its because it’s easier to play as a solo player with a more attack oriented class and the white mage seems more dependent on having other players to succeed. I don’t really know, these are just questions I’m asking, I find the class one chooses in a game to be kind of an interesting commentary on the character of the person playing.

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