Honestly, how many of you have NOT used your Bonus XP Weekend to train your Herblore at least some extent? I'll admit, it has been the only thing I’ve done for as long as my supplies lasted. I even spent the preceding week putting all my herbs into vials, just to save some time.
Of course, it's obvious that everyone eventually wants to wield the power of the Overload. It will hurt you for 500 Lifepoints, but all your combat stats will be boosted to Extreme levels, without any weakening over time. Even the Restore Special potion is pretty powerful, if you ask me. When you look up the price of a mature Greenman's Ale (a drink that temporarily boosts your Herblore by two levels) I doubt you can say anything other than, "Holy Harralanders, Batman!"
When compared to other top-level assets at your disposal during combat (that can't be traded or otherwise transferred), such as Turmoil or Chaotic weapons, the Overload isn't far behind on the list of must-haves for any respectable fight.
The sole reason for this is, of course, the constant re-boosting capacities of the potion. Even if you chugged down a few gallons of Saradomin Brew, after the fifteen seconds have past, your boosted stats will not only restore themselves, but boost themselves back up to Extreme potion levels.
While this ability is indispensible when fighting boss monsters, in Castle-, Soul-, and even Clan-Wars this seems a bit overpowered; especially when considering that this ability is completely invisible in the game, save for an opponent using the Stats-Spy spell. Realistically, though, who has time to cast that spell during combat? So, should Herblore, just like Summoning, become part of your combat level, or should it, like it is currently in the Wilderness, be made slightly less powerful in these places?
How would you go about weakening the effect of potions? Certainly you wouldn't want them to be too weak. But even if your stats stay drained after a swig of Saradomin Brew, instantly boosting all combat stats is still pretty awesome, even if it doesn’t reach Extreme but stays at "mere" Super potion levels.
An example. Until recently, if your Magic level dropped below the required level to cast a spell, you would stop autocasting it. This does not work the same with Melee or Ranged where you can theoretically continue to wield a Whip while your Attack level is completely drained to 1.
But with Jagex's recent patch, it no longer matters if your levels drop below the required Magic level to continue autocasting, so even mages are now unaffected by a Sarabrew overdose. Not that I particularly liked this patch (it should have been the opposite), but it's one less reason to keep the re-boosting capabilities in these places.
But whatever solution to tone down the power of potions, nerfing the Overload, even if it was just in those places, would undoubtedly cause massive riots, cancellations of subscriptions, and hard feelings, so we could totally expect this from Jagex.
I personally prefer it if some other cheap, useless, or otherwise neglected skill would get its needed overhaul, so they'd be useful in combat too.
Firemaking probably popped in your head, and rightly so. Together with, perhaps, Crafting, this skill could be geared towards the pyrotechnical, allowing you to make signal flares, blinding flashes (like the Giant Mole "blinds" you) or other KILL IT WITH FIRE-esque items.
Or what about Construction combined with Range to make some light artillery? Even the Romans had Ballistae that could be operated by a single man. Certainly Smithing missed the opportunity when the Artisans Workshop only gave cosmetic rewards.
The point is that the spicing up of other skills seems to be the way to go to make Herblore have only a major impact instead of a massive one on combat. Then again, spicing something up also requires herbs...