Updated Wed, Mar 21, 2012 by Xerin
Druids are the definitive hybrid class in World of Warcraft. They are able to fulfil every role in the game, being able to either heal, tank, or provide melee or ranged DPS. While DPSing they can provide either physical DPS as melee fighters or magical DPS while fighting at range. This makes them capable of doing everything possible and being the most versatile class in the game. You could in theory run either 5 player instances or 25 player raids will only Druid players, now that is a true hybrid.
We’re going to go over the basics of the Druid class, why you should play one, what professions are good for Druids, which statistics Druids need, and more. If you’re looking for even more advanced info, head on over to the Druid Combat / Shapeshifting page, but be sure to bookmark this page for a quick reference on various Druid statistics.
Why should you play a Druid?
Druids are the jack of all trades class and in fact they are masters of all of them as well. They can fill all possible roles required making them the ultimate versatility class. Everything is within their grasp and by using talents they can specialize into one very specific role. So if you’re unsure of what you want to play in the game then a Druid gives you the option to choose pretty much anything and change at any time in the future.
What’s the best Race for a Druid?
There are a limited number of races that can play as Druids. Right now, Druids can be Night Elves, Worgen, Tauren, and Trolls. However, that doesn’t decrease the difficulty in picking the right race since you’re stuck with it unless you want to pay for a race change. Don’t worry though, you can’t make much of a mistake and the various differences aren’t strong enough that you shouldn’t focus on what you find more aesthetically pleasing.
There is a difference between the races in their racial abilities though so if you’re a power gamer be sure to browse what the differences are as they can be substantial. If you want to know the best race for a Druid in World of Warcraft then look below at the primary racials:
|Tauren||Warstomp remains a staple of Tauren gameplay (it’s a brief AoE stun that’s great for interrupting) and the additional health isn’t anything to to sneeze at when tanking. This should be your choice if you are going to be a tank, or PVPing heavily.|
|Troll||The highlight of Trolls is their racial that gives them increased haste on a cooldown. This is huge at higher levels and a great ability if you’re willing to active it frequently enough. The haste boost provides significantly more DPS so if you are going to be a Horde DPS druid then this should be your choice.|
|You get 1% critical strike and the ability to sprint (on top of feral sprint). This is a pretty significant upgrade for any class, so Worgens always stand out. If you are playing as Alliance this is the clear choice for DPS or healing.|
|Night Elves||You get an improved form of stealth, and “Quickness” is a 2% to miss that works from any angle (front/back/side) which is excellent for tanking.|
What’s the best Profession for a Druid?
Choosing a profession used to be difficult, but it isn’t any more thanks to normalization of the various trade skills. You get the same bonus with any non-gathering profession; they just come in different varieties and tiers. So the first major stat reward comes at level 70 and at each expansion thereafter.
So don’t overly fret when picking professions, go with the one you know you’ll like. It’s a great idea to check out our Professions portal to browse over what each profession does and what benefit each one has to you.
If you really want to maximize your performance though then you should consider matching your professions to your spec.
For example if you choose to mainly focus on melee DPS as a feral cat druid then getting skinning and leatherworking would be idea. This would grant you the crit bonus from skinning, better wrist enchants from leatherworking, as well as providing usable items.
If you are going to tank as a feral bear then potentially mining and blacksmithing is best. Since it would provide you with extra stamina and extra gem slots.
You can change at any time though and again the professions provide a fairly even stat bonus across the board, it is just a matter of which stat. Lastly unless you are going to raid, and really want to get the absolute most out of the character your choice of profession is not going to break your character.
What spec should I pick for a Druid?
Good question and one easily answered. There are four major specializations a Druid can select from, they are Restoration (Healing), Feral (Melee DPS), Feral (Tanking), and Balance (Magical DPS). Each form / specialization has its own benefits, which you can read about in our Combat (Shapeshifting) section. While there are four types, there are only three different talent trees to chose from. The Feral tree has talents that you select from that work for either DPS or tanking or both but with a different effect based on your current form.
Balance (Caster / Moonkin Form): While in Moonkin form you can only cast Balance spells and you gain the eclipse bar (once you begin specializing in Balance) that buffs of Arcane / Nature spells depending on the order of spells you cast.
Feral (Cat Form): In Cat Form you lose your Mana bar in exchange for an Energy bar and can only use certain feral abilities that pertain to Cat Form. While in this form you gain the properties of an animal and most of your skills act like a Rogue.
Feral (Bear Form): In Bear Form you lose your Mana bar in exchange for a Rage bar and can only use certain feral abilities that pertain to Bear Form. While in this form you gain the properties of an animal and most of your skills act like a Warrior. In addition, you gain more health and can take a lot more damage.
Restoration (Caster / Tree Form): Restoration Druids use various different healing abilities to heal their party and raid, but mainly focus on heal over time (HOT) type healing spells. They can also temporarily transform into a Tree for increased healing ability.
Once you spec into one of the three talent trees and reach level 80 you also gain an ability to use the Mastery stat which provides some great bonuses. They are different for each spec and are as follows:
Balance - Total Eclipse: Increases the bonus damage from Eclipse by 16% and a bonus 2% per point of mastery.
Feral (Cat) - Razor Claws: Increases your bleed damage by 25.04% and a bonus 3.1% per point of mastery.
Feral (Bear) - Savage Defender: Increases the damage absorbed by your savage defence by an additional 32% and a bonus 4% per point of mastery.
Restoration - Harmony: Increases your direct healing by 10% and provides a 10 second buff of 10% to your HOT healing after casting a direct heal. Each point of mastery increases these bonuses by 1.25%
What are the best stats for Druids?
There are many different stats that are useful for druids, which is useful for you depends on your spec and will be described in the next section. This section focuses only on what each stat that is useful for Druids as a whole will provide.
What’s the best equipment for a Druid?
Choosing equipment is a complicated issue for druids since there is so many different priorities that all depend on which spec you choose. For example while agility might be an awesome stat for feral DPS druids, it is a completely useless stat if you are a restoration or balance druid. In fact if you are a restoration or balance druid you should never ever have a single piece of gear that has agility on it equipped, and if you do, you are doing something wrong.
Feral (Bear) - As a tank you need to focus on gaining stamina, dodge, mastery, hit, and expertise. Crit and Haste also help out a bit with threat generation, however if you are not having threat issues then focus more on your other stats.
Feral (Cat) - As a melee DPS druid you will focus on agility as your key stat and then also aim to get mastery, crit, haste, hit, and expertise.
Balance - As a caster your obvious key stat is intellect as it provides the biggest boost. You also need to ensure you reach the hit cap by getting hit and spirit. Once at the hit cap you focus changes to haste, mastery, and crit.
Restoration - Again as a caster you key stat is intellect since it provides spellpower, mana, and spell crit. After that you are looking for spirit for mana regeneration, and then haste, mastery, and crit for faster and bigger heals.
For full spec specific details and priorities visit our guide to reforging and check out the class specifics page here: Reforge This - Class Specifics.