Training your Bodyguard

So last post I discussed the basics of the tools we have at our disposal, today I am going to look at the skills that are available for training as a Mercenary Bounty Hunter.

Here is the build I am currently running with , because I’m lazy I end up using this in PvP as well as PvE at the moment.

Bodyguard Tree

Here is a rundown of some of the abilities in this tree, and why I chose them(or left them out in some cases).

Tier 1

Med Tech – Allows you to cast more Healing Scans and to cast Rapid Scan faster, take both points.

Improved Vents – Lets your Vent Heat ability vent 16 more heat, definitely useful, take both points.

Hired Muscle – Increases your Critical Hit Chance, also taking points in this ability unlocks the next tier ability, Critical Reaction, take all three points.

Tier 2

Critical Reaction – Increases your alacrity(haste) by 5% whenever you critically heal.  This talent scales with your gear, and its a hard one to pass up, take both points. At higher gear and crit levels, this buff will pretty stay up full time as long as you are actively healing.

Empowered Scans – This skill makes your Rapid Shots and Rapid Scan build stacks of Combat Support Cylinder faster. Take both points.

Surgical Precision System – Reduces pushback(time lost casting when you are hit by an enemy) and threat(how angry the bad guys are at you) while casting healing spells.  Take this before you head into any instance past Black Talon, as your healing threat will out pull the tanks in some cases.

Supercharged Gas – We talked about this bad boy before, just take it.  It will add a stack able healing/damage boost with a cooldown that can be used to increase healing and damage even further.

Tier 3

Kolto Missile – Our only AoE healing ability, get it and don’t look back.

Kolto Residue - Adds a nifty little buff to the targets that are healed by Kolto Missile which increases the healing received by the target for 5% for the next 15 seconds, not too bad at all when you consider that this buff will stack with more than one Bounty Hunter in the group.  The only downside to this is that in places like PvP you cannot choose who Kolto Missile heals, so sometimes the buff will go onto someone that might not be the target of your next couple of heals.  For these reasons I say take both points for PvE content and consider them optional for PvP.

Power Shield - Makes your Energy Shield reduce pushback further and makes you immune to interrupts. So far I’ve liked the points in other talents for PvE, so I would say this guy is optional.  For PvP, take it, its fun to watch people waste interrupts on your blue shield and cackle as the hutt ball passes their goal.

Heat Damping - This is a soloing/PvP talent. Reduces the cost of your CC moves.    Probably not neccessary for endgame PvE content but still useful.

Tier 4

Ciritical Efficiency – Talked about this guy before, but a definite must for all content types.  This causes you Healing Scan ability to reduce the cost of your next Rapid Scan by 16(the cost of healing scan).

Powered Insulators – Reduces the damage you take when your Combat Support Cylinder is active.  A nice skill, as you have to heal your self a bit less, probably more important in PvP where you *should* be taking a bit more damage. Optional.

Protective Field - Another skill that buffs Energy Shield, once again looks sexier for PvP than PvE, but the selfish healing increase of 20% is nothing to scoff at.

Tier 5

Kolto Shell - Everyone say it with me now, EARTH SHIELD! Gives you a free, instant cast ability that places 10 charges on a friendly.  A charge is expended each hit that friendly takes, and the friendly is healed a small amount.  Take this ability for all specs.

Cure Mind - Makes your Cure spell cheaper, and also removes negative mental effects.  Grab this, you are a healer and you need to learn to dispell, seriously.

Proactive Medicine – Adds a HoT component to your Healing Scan, a must for any build.  Also, points in this unlock the Reactive Armor ability.

Reactive Armor – Along with the HoT from Proactive Medicine, Healing scan also applies a 10% armor buff to your friendly target, a godsend for tanks taking a lot of damage. I would only say this is optional for PvP, as the buff is too good to pass up in environments where you know the primary damage taking target.

Tier 6

Warden – Increases the amount of your critical heals, I would say take all five points in this, unless there are other skills you really must have.  I cannot recommend any of the selfish bonuses over this one.

Tier 7

Emergency Scan - Our top tier ability, and our only instant cast heal, good thing it’s also our biggest single target heal, oh yea, and its free.


  1. Levitt says:

    I’ve got no complaints with the spec choice. That’s the same that I came up with too. It’s a shame there seems to be a dearth of discussion about BH healing, though I suspect it is because we are such heavy dps hitters.

    Any thoughts on stat weights? I saw some of the theorycrafting for Agents over on sithwarrior, which all made sense. Probably be more crit/surge based, throw in some power, and let alacrity be for the most part.

    • Keegan says:

      I also agree with this spec as a base spec for all BH healers who are looking to get the most out of one spec (i.e. PVP and PVE). I will say that I feel that the spec can be tweaked specifically for PVP or PVE.

      Specifically for PVE End game raiding I would suggest taking the 2 points out of Surgical Precision System and putting them in Powered Insulators. Minimizing damage is always a priority in raiding.

      As for stat weights, I would agree that Alacrity should be left alone. My current thoughts are Power>Surge>Crit>Alacrity. My reasoning is that Power does not suffer from diminishing returns (Bonus healing = .17*Power)where as the rest of the stats do. Surge is the most efficient stat and caps much earlier than the rest. From looking at the graphs on the Agent Healing Compendium on, around 600-650 Surge Rating, Crit becomes a more efficient stat. However, more research needs to be done before anything can be considered concrete.

      • treadstyle says:

        After running through the first couple bosses in eternity vault, I would have to disagree with the points out of Surgical precision system. Healers can pull ALOT of threat and that is our only threat reduction talent. Instead if you really wanted to get the Powered Insulators, I would consider leaving a point off Warden or only spending 9 points outside the tree.

        I’ve actually decided to in my recent changes drop one point out of Warden and place it into Power Shield. this combined with Surgical precision system gives you an interrupt/push back free 12 seconds(15 with the 2 piece PvP) which has been helpful on fights with lots of AoE damage. Also, translates well into PvP.

        As for stats I think that the posting over on the Agent Sith Warrior forums is accurate enough for us at the moment. I am personally going Power>Surge>Crit>Alacrity, but am taking whatever gear I can get my hands on.

  2. Keegan says:

    Ah, interesting. I actually just hit 50 yesterday and obviously I haven’t been able to run EV yet and my thought was based solely on past mmo experience. I was unaware that healers can pull threat quite easily. If that is the case then I would agree with you. I also agree with combining PS with SPS.

    Out of curiosity, how often do you find yourself using cure?

    • Levitt says:

      I’ve noticed the threat issue even running flashpoints. Tanks usually have to put guard on a DPS to have any hope of keeping up with their threat, so I tend to get mauled for a bit with adds or multi-pulls.

      I wonder since it ranks at the bottom for stats if the 2 points in Systems Calibration are worth taking over Powered Insulators. If you keep crit around 30%, Critical Reaction would likely be up most of the time.

    • Aphetto says:

      I find myself using cure quite often, however there are certain debuffs that aren’t curable. The Acklay’s put a vicious bleed debuff on targets during the Pylon Puzzle event that can be cleansed, whereas the burn debuff from Annihilation droid can’t be cleansed.

      Threat is an issue in large pulls and spread out pulls, even with SPS I use my Chaff Flare often.

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