The Herbalist's Brainstorm Thread

Herbalists, as we know them in their current state are rendered completely obsolete by clerics. They need more functionality to be useful.

Also, I’d like to point out that because clerics essentially heal everyone to 100% without effort, the herbalists don’t get any wounded to heal, so leveling a herbalist is extremely slow and tedious, because the recipes they craft barely give any exp.

I request the following changes, and I’d like to ask everyone to add further suggestions!

  • Healing potions to be carried by soldiers into battle as an emergency healing
    × Furthermore, herbalists should be able to craft different tiers of healing potions for different amounts of healing. Obviously, the higher the tier, the higher the healing, and higher the level of the herbalist required to craft it.

  • Complementing the above suggestion, entry level bandage should be craftable at herbalist level 0 to replace the healing potion which is now carried into battle by soldiers
    × Either that, or the potions can have multiple functions, meaning that they are both usable by soldiers and the herbalists themselves

  • Antidot Tonic and more negative status effects caused by monsters, which also last longer
    × Part of the herbalist’s job is to cure status effects caused by monsters, as they can’t be removed by cleric heals. To expand on this, there should be a new kind of potion that represents this ability, as well as more and more potent negative buffs should be added to hostile monsters, some which only the herbalists themselves can remove (so the cleric can’t just storm to the bed and shove a potion down the hearthlings’ throat)

  • Hearthlings to gain temporary bonuses when cured by herbalists over clerics
    × To further differentiate the herbalist and the cleric, herbalists should grant temporary buffs to hearthlings they’ve cured:
    × For example, hearthlings whom they heal gain a temporary health regeneration for a few in-game days, or immunity to negative buffs when the herbalist removes a negative buff from them.
    × With this we’d also need the ability to forbid clerics from healing bedridden hearthlings

  • Buff Potions included in the general GUI for easy access, and the ability to (optionally) schedule them for automatic consumption when they are available.
    × Right now it’s ridiculously tedious to activate these things, because one needs to either have one placed somewhere in the world, or find one in one of the stockpiles, so a button somewhere on the GUI would help a LOT!
    × The “GUI button” should prefer potions stored in stockpiles or containers over potions placed in the world
    × When a placed potion is consumed, it should be automatically replaced by a Hearthling (or they should be completely excluded from this feature?)
    × The duration of these buffs should be displayed on the general GUI, as it currently affects every hearthling

  • A crafting reagent crafted by herbalists for weavers to craft poison coated arrows
    × Herbalists can now cure the village and help in a lot of ways… How about some offensive capabilities?

  • The herbalist and the engineer to join forces to craft dangerous poison traps!
    × The herbalist crafts a reagent or two, the engineer uses those reagents to craft some tricky stuff with poison!

  • We have buff potions? How about some offensive buff potions?!
    × These potions would work in a similar way to the current buff potions, except they would affect enemies instead of our hearthlings
    × These could only be manually triggered from the military menu of the GUI, and would affect every enemy in a certain radius around every hearthling (and would obviously need a cooldown)
    × The types of offensive potions include: Stun, Lower Damage, Lower Armor, Poison, Burn, Terror! (makes them flee), slow movement and attack speed, etc…

  • The mason and the herbalist could also work together to craft "buff statues"
    × These would either be offensive or defensive, and would either weaken enemies or strengthen allies within a specific radius around the statue
    × Specific reagents would be crafted by the herbalist and the mason would incorporate those into the statue
    × These statues would be subject to destruction by enemies, and would be autoreplaced, just like the doors, or repaired by the mason when they are damaged
    × Effects could also include slight bonuses to move speed to enchance the efficiency of the workers, as well as other work related bonuses like faster crafting

  • Herbalist to gain a buff aura in Town Defense mode
    × The herbalist in general is a non-combat unit, but in times of need, the herbalist should be able to dish out some limited magic to save the day

  • Herbalists should be able to help farmers tend to flower fields (but only flower fields!)
    × When they run out of flowers, my poor herbalists usually turn sad and depressed, because they feel useless!
    × Perhaps they could also have a garden of their own. “shrugs”

  • Decorative potions!
    × Potion bottles of various colors without any actual usefulness. They would sparkle, glow, or even talk! Woah!

  • The ability to place healing potions in the world, just like the other potions
    × What’s this discrimination? Every potion is beautiful!

Well, that is all I could think of for now…

Now it’s time for discussion!


I think we (the community and TR) are focusing too much into his healing role, which obviously is not working because of the cleric, and most suggestions end up in a way of buffing him or nerfing the cleric (directly or indirectly).

What I would like much more to see is an improved role with the herbs (plants), leaving his healing role just as a small help for a town without a cleric.
I would like to see him crafting decorative bushes, plants and everything nature related. Remove the crafting of plants from carpenters and potter, make them craft just the pot, not the potted plant, this crafted pot will them be used as an ingredient in herbalist recipes to then create the potted plants.


I like most of these ideas. I have only been able to level herbalist by selling the majority of the potions to merchants because it takes so many to level.

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I like this idea in combination with @8BitCrab’s idea from the engineer thread. He had suggested a healing contraption, which faces the same cleric problem you are talking about here. But having a statue/contraption that sprays some kind of buffing mist, perhaps for speed/efficiency/crafting bonus would be really cool. The potion could run out and need to be restocked as well to limit it’s potency.


The easiest way they could make them relevant again, is to make you require a level 4 herbalist to get a cleric and then give the herbalist a level 6 skill that doubles the duration of town wide buffs and make it so they gain the speed buff (coffee) at level 6, and make it boost speed by 50%.

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I like the idea of having the herbalist’s healing ability be secondary and focus more on other potions.
Have the herbalist scavenge for rare items (like mushrooms, roots and exotic bushes and other flora) in a specifically placed zone for these new items (like a trapper zone that it will tend to periodically).

And I do like the other ideas also…


When thinking about uses for herbs besides the medical and nutritious factors, ink and smoke comes to my mind.
What if the banners and such all was white like the saftystandard, and then the herbalist could craft different colours for the weaver to use? Might even make some system related to the military groups with their four different colours?
Smoke, would be useful in battle, and maybe only footmen or some class could use it, with like grenades or signal fires…
or… the cook could smoke some fish…if we had some of those of course… haha.
Well that was what the storm in my brain left behind :grinning:

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this exactly what i think, there is a lot of unused possible uses for the herbalist class, beside of the common healing/buffing stuff.

Since stonehearth is based on farming, crafting and fighting, we can still improve in an immersive way to keep the player focusing on more different tasks and mechanics, beside the food, the health and amount of build stuff.

  1. Farming and food in general:
    For new hearthlings we need an insane amount food which is more than enough to feed 1000 of this lil people, but since we lack of other aspects this is just a temporal issue. So making crops and other food harder to obtain would be an option.
    -Finding “seeds” or wild versions of the crops and the herbalist has to cultivate them in special cropplots, before farmer can plant them. “unlocking” the seeds or even cultivating just for a preset amount of farming cycles. This would also open more options for things like hybrid species, biome/culture depending crops/plants etc…
    -Changing the trapper zone to forest zone with multiple functions like trapping, auto treecutting/replanting and foraging (berries, mushrooms, herbs twigs/branches for baskets and a hard cold winter, maybe wild beehive respawning etc…) unlocks more tasks for all workers, the trapper (foraging and as forester), the carpenter (still fits the task of forester while he got no items to craft) and some special tasks like special herbs and shrooms for the herbalist and the dangerous beehives 8which could drop down and hurt if toched by an unskilled and clumsy worker =potential pojectile for the ballista?)
    -Lot of ppl suggested beekeeping, so why not let the carpenter build wooden apiaries, the herbalists is able to gather beehives in the wild and replant 'em into your village safely. We get honey, wax and other stuff, combinate this cropplots with flowers as a must have for the bees, and maybe beehives near fields could boost the yielded amount/quality of crops.
  2. Medical situation of the village
    with the cleric, the herbalist became just an unnecessary step before the almighty cleric which can heal every wound and even starving hearthlings can’t die near him. So we a have big amount of unused and rotting food, a unused herbalists and mysterious black cord order sending undead zombies at our walls… So where are the plague rats, the diseases, the illness we spread by living in such a mess? A perfect sceanario for the herbalist beeing our hero, creating teas and burning incense made with herbs and tree sap and resin, perfect use for small shrine made by the potter and mason

such features would raise up of the herbalist in all developing stages, and adds lot of stuff ppl suggested 100 times XD

  • Fevers and epidemics
    × The herbalist could also have a new function, which is to cure sicknesses that are brought into the town by traveling merchants, or when a hearthling catches a cold during winter

I had this thought while playing Banished the other day, and I thought it could also work in Stonehearth.

The fevers not necessarily have to be lethal. A sickness could weaken a hearthling by having him/her move slower, require more sleep, craft and work slower, consume more food, deal less damage in combat, etc. They would generally last for a few days, or longer for rarer fevers, unless treated by a herbalist.

There could also be an option to disable this if the player doesn’t want to face them in game.


@CrazyCandy make it a mod :smile: would be a massive extra challenge for hard mode!!

simply debuffs which has to be countered by the herbalists. but i think some ingredients which could be used by other classes would be handy

I’m very much on board with the idea of the Herbalist having a ‘gathering area’ where they grab plants; it’d be particularly nice if these areas worked twofold: first, the Herbalist gathers invisible resources (you just watch the Herbalist messing with the grass and they end up with one a short list of random items) and second, the Herbalist harvests any wild plants in the area. So Wild Silkweed or Berry Bushes get harvested automatically and then a Worker will come along to pick the stuff up per usual, while the Herbalist grabs Herbalist-specific bits like Frostsnap and others.

I also like the idea of smoke and area buffs; basically, I’m thinking craftable incense that can be placed like a buff potion and then click to light it. It’ll then provide a longer term buff in a set area around it, maybe while producing a bit of light and a wisp of colored smoke. These don’t have to be the same as the existing potion buffs; here’s a few ideas:

  • Inspiration Incense: Craftsmen within the AoE get a buff to their Inventiveness (increasing the chance of fine items)
  • Somnolence Incense: Anyone within the AoE gets a buff to their Diligence (less sleep time)
  • Peaceful Incense: Hearthlings get a Morale buff while Shepherds’ animals get a happiness buff

On the other side of the coin, you could also craft stinkbombs that work on specific creatures. These work similarly: they are placeable buffs you click to activate and create a temporary AoE. However, these create an invisible obstacle or a Morale debuff to specific creatures, either altering their pathing or forcing them to flee the AoE. Obviously this would need to be balanced carefully in terms of radius, duration, and crafting so that people can’t just bug-bomb the only way into their town and set a dozen Archers behind the smoke.

  • Herbicide: Ents and Entlings
  • Sanctified: Undead and Necromancers
  • Stinkbomb: Wolves, Goblin Wolves, and Kobold Wolves
  • Mudslide: Golems
  • Snapbang: Goblins

I also would note that there’s mention of Willpower (I think?) helping Hearthlings shake off enemy charms; I like this idea for Herbalists in terms of counters and traps.

  • Clarity Patch: A level 0 item equippable by Footmen, Clerics, Knights, and Archers that gives 24 hours of Willpower buff. It’ll boost their natural healing rate as well, although if you have a Cleric that’s a non-factor.
  • Dizzy Mist: Placeable potion that can be clicked to cause a confusion effect on all enemies within the AoE. Enemies will randomly stand still, attack each other, or wander in a random direction until it wears off. Can be used as a component by Engineers to upgrade traps or create a new self-activating Dizzy Mist Landmine (which works identically to the potion).

I would suggest adding Magic Point cost to cleric’s healing spells, and make the magic point can only be recovered by herbalists’ tonics :joy:
And then it’s almost making herbalists a must, but sort of tilting the balance in favor of monsters. So there should be a way to save cleric’s MP, verify the class’s skill, I mean, the cleric currently has healing aura, healing spell, we could make the aura passive skill, while healing spell active and MP costly, then adding a new active skill like debuffing monsters, which costs little MP, and adding a switch button in the unit frame, just like the archers did, to switch among two active skills and no active skills, as in the beginning, entings and little stonlins will not do fatal damage to your military units, but your town will be in lack of hearthlings for another herbalist, hence players could choose use passive aura to heal and the less costly skill to save MP.


I agree with @BrunoSupremo the herbalist should focus less on the healing role and also I would like to expand @CrazyCandy`s idea of healing potions that can be carried by soldiers with the following suggestion:

The herbalist will be able to craft several types of potions that can be carried by soldiers and they can have up to 5 potions in their inventory, these potions are consumed at the start of a battle and the soldiers will refill more potions when they aren`t fighting or following an order. Each potion is designed to enhance a certain class during battle and the soldiers automatically choose the right potion for them. It could go as following:

Potion of Varanus Vigour - increases maximum health - Knight

Potion of Rabbit Speed - increases movement speed - Archer

Potion of Ogre Strength - increases attack damage - Footman

Aqua Sancti - increases healing animation speed - Cleric


I think having them consume a potion every single time they meet a goblin thief could be a tad bit expensive. I think they should only consume those potions if the odds are against them, like when they are outnumbered by the enemy or are facing a powerful foe.


+1 for Herbalists “gathering” instead of farming.

I like the idea of them being an alchemist in general, making poison for traps or special ammo for missile weapons.

Why not make Clerics simply BUFF friendly troops, with a higher HP cap (would act the same as a HP boost) or other effects, so you still require a Herbalist for actual HP recovery long term?

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another idea would be to bring in real injuries and debuffs (similar to fallout series where radiation lowers your maximum hp), so the cleric can heal the hp to the maximum let’s 200, but once the soldiers get in fight they get more injuries their maximum hp gets debuffed at a certain amount and they get speed and dmg debuff, so after a while your army will run around with lowered stats aslong they don’t get treated properly by the herbalist.

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That would actually be nice. Clerics heal HP, so hearthlings can keep fighting, but in battle there is a chance for them to get debuffs like “Fracture”, “Large Gash”, “Poisoned” etc. Those give debuffs to damage output, maximum health etc of the hearthling and could only be healed by a herbalist. Would also help against the “Win or die”-meta Radiant tries to remove, because there are consequences in battle that don’t necessarily lead to the death of all defenders and the wipe of all hearthlings.

It’d be cool to see soldiers injured like that, requiring “hard” treatment as opposed to “soft”. Would add more personality and emotion to your hearthlings too!

To add a different spin to some of the good points here; I like the idea of expanding the herbalist from a simple “potion maker” to more of a chemist/alchemist role.

A potion is a simple, highly practical item – so it makes a ton of sense as an early item. However when I think of the true value of chemists, they really amplify stuff other people work on. This could impact almost any other profession:

  • Refine Sugar/Salt as a preservative/enhancer for a cook
  • Fertilizer for farmers
  • Steroids for fighters (or something less controversial; villager augmentation is another topic entierly)
  • Acids / varnishes / additives / fancy materials (e.g. glass, rubber, paper, synthetic fibers) to help craftsmen craft high level items
  • Enhance the cleric’s powers with pharmaceuticals to heal the sick and … ehem … “sacramental” wine to help them commune with Cid.
  • Explosives…. I’m sure someone could find a use.

Basically I’m thinking of modern chemical companies - BASF, DOW, Dupont, etc – these are big companies that we really don’t see but they have huge impacts on all sorts of other industries.

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