Skirmishing 101: The Herbalist


Housing - Heather

The herbalist is a favorite soldier by raiders. Why? Because a raid generally has sufficient offensive power but could always use a little extra healing. In addition, they also prefer the safer soldiers.

The herbalist is the safest of soldiers of the soldiers.They follow behind you and they do no damage. As such, they are the least likely soldiers to get you into trouble. This is noted best in Rescue at Nûrz Ghâshu. With Golodir switching sides constantly in the boss fight, the last thing you want if for your soldier to consider Golodir to be a fair target. What’s the best way to keep your soldier from damaging someone? The two guaranteed choices would be to either dismiss your soldier or summon a soldier that doesn’t do any damage.

Despite the lack of damage, the herbalist can prove useful when you have trouble surviving skirmishes, especially at higher tiers. Some players use an offensive soldier for Tier 1 skirmishes and an herbalist for Tier 3 skirmishes.

As you can see, the herbalist is commonly used as a secondary soldier, though high-damage classes (such as champions and hunters) often use herbalists as their primary soldier (or even exclusively).

While an herbalist is primarily a healer, they can also act as a light tank. Their healing tends to attract the attention of any mobs not grabbed by someone else and they are able to heal themselves to survive such attacks. No, they won’t take a heavy pounding but they can take enough for survive what you will likely face in a solo run.

Note that while herbalists don’t inflict any damage, while in combat their AI acts as if they do. The upshot of this is that an herbalist will not heal you if the only available enemy targets are those that are under CC (such as those in traps), those who are immune to damage (such as a shielded Daywalker Berserker), and those that are dangerous to attack (such as an Echo of Death). Naturally, you can override this as usual with the attack command (yes, that sounds strange).


Pros: An herbalist can heal your morale and power. They also have better survivability than you would first guess with a cloth class (since they can also heal their own morale). The herbalist is also one of the better behaved soldiers.

Cons: Herbalists have no damage output.

Group Sizes: While there are some situations where you may wish to use an herbalist in solo play (especially in Tier 3 runs), the herbalist is especially useful in larger groups.

Classes: I recommend herbalists for classes with a high damage output and low defenses. Burglars, hunters, and champions are the classes most associated with the herbalist. A minstrel or rune-keeper that is optimized for damage output might also consider an herbalist, though I would recommend that they have a damage soldier on hand if they ever plan to run small group content as a healer.

Skirmishes: Herbalists are generally most useful in high-density skirmishes where you are likely to take more damage from the enemy. In addition, they are the only absolutely safe soldier in Rescue at Nûrz Ghâshu’s boss fight.

Armor: Light

Damage: None

Special: The herbalist provides an aura imrpoves your in-combat morale regeneration.


Herbalist skills perform one of three functions: morale healing, power healing, and defensive buffing.

Nature’s Cure – Medium morale healing over time

This is the basic healing skill.

Refreshing herbs – Medium healing

This is the herbalist’s basic heal-over-time skill.

Nature’s Power – Power healing over time

If you tend to run out of power, then this skill will come in handy. Of course, recall the standard rule that the more options you give the soldier, the more likely they will choose the wrong one. Therefore, if you never run low on power, avoid equipping this skill.

Strengthening Draught – Improves resistances to damage

This is the only herbalist skill that does not heal in any way. Instead, it improves you damage mitigations. This can be useful in those high-density skirmishes where you are being hit by many mobs at once.

Salve of Resolve (Barter – Level 45) – Low healing and an avoidance buff

While this is not the best healing skill, it does increase your block, parry, and evade. Thus you will take less damage overall.

Herbs of Boundless Endurance (Barter – Level 55) – High healing over time and increases incoming healing

Yes, this is an excellent skill once you are high enough a level to train it.

Ultimate: Words of Healing (Barter – 50) –Ultimate healing over time for fellowship

This is the most powerful healing skill and is recommended if you are using an herbalist in a fellowship.

Ultimate: Words of Power (Barter – 60) – Ultimate power healing over time for fellowship

In a long fight, power may become an issue with some players. This would come in handy in such cases. This will depend on how often characters run out of power (if they never do, then I suggest using the healing ultimate instead).


The following traits are trainable by herbalists (in addition to those that are trainable by all soldiers):

Light Armor Training – Improves armor value of those that wear light armor

Tactical Potency – This is used to improve the herbalist’s healing.


With four pure healing skills, you can set up an herbalist that does nothing but restore morale. If that’s overkill, then you may look into the other buffs or power restoration abilities.

The herbalist never directly helps you to get through a skirmish faster. They may allow you to trait in a line that allows you to kill things faster, though.

Next time, we will look at the Herbalist.

May your shield protect you and your spear never break,

Pineleaf Needles


  1. Andang /

    This is my favorite soldier!

  2. DancesInTrees /

    My minstrel uses a Herbalist exclusively.
    Soloing I’m dps.
    Small groups I’m still dps but ready to drop WS on a nasty pull.
    Depending on the group set-up – including number of herbalists – I either stick with mainly dps or go full healing for fellowships & raids.

  3. Kaleigh Starshine /

    A wonderful guide, Pineleaf. Do you have any advice as to what Training to give herbalists? For the longest time, Deverell had trained in Practiced Critical, but just recently, I went over some of our battles and was very surprised to find that she never, ever healed critically at all.

  4. Atzumo /

    Do sage next please, I always use it with my mini in tier 2 skirms

  5. A video screen-capture however will give you an over the shoulder approach to learning where you can watch the
    person go about their daily routine the game and learn there inside tips that way.

    At that time, anyone found or suspected of using herbs in any
    medicinal fashion were considered witches and burned at the stake or tortured to death for offering
    natural healing solutions to others. You will then go to the next
    tier, and the next tier, and the next tier,
    all of which will have new plants and herbs for you to pick.


  1. LOTRO: Dr.Quinn trained in Mirkwood! | tsuhelm - […] advice, this time on Herbalist training, and herbalist, had a peek at Pineleaf’s herbalist guide too […]

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