Latest Patch Notes
See the Ability Pruning section above for discussion of why we're pruning class abilities. For Druids, we focused thinning out the niche and abilities that were not used often. We made sure to retain abilities for Druid
s to function in off-spec roles, since that flexibility is a defining characteristic of the class.
- Barkskin is now available to Balance, Guardian, and Restoration Druids,
- Enrage has been removed.
- Faerie Fire is now available only to Feral and Guardian Druids.
- Innervate has been removed.
- Lacerate is now available only to Guardian Druids.
- Leader of the Pack no longer restores Mana and is only available to Feral Druids.
Mana regeneration for Feral and Guardian Druids have been increased by 100%.
) has been removed.Maul
is now available only to Guardian Druids.
Might of Ursoc has been removed. Nature's Swiftness
is now available only to Restoration Druid
has been removed.
Owlkin Frenzy has been removed.Rake
now also stuns the target for 4 seconds if used while stealthed, and is only available to Feral Druids.Survival Instincts
is now available only to Feral and Guardian Druids.Swipe
is now requires the Druid
to be in Cat Form
and is available only to Feral Druids.
Symbiosis has been removed.Thrash
is now available to all Druid
specializations (was Feral and Guardian only).
Ability Consolidation and Refinement
For consolidation of abilities, we merged several passive abilities. One notable change is the merging of Ravage into Shred
, and Pounce
; saving a couple keybinds that were only used in conjunction with Prowl
- Cat Form now increases movement speed by 30% (up from 25%).
- Infected Wounds has been removed and its effects have been incorporated into Mangle and Shred for Feral and Guardian Druids.
- Lifebloom can no longer stack, and its healing has been increased to compensate.
- Rip is now available only to Feral Druids.
- Omen of Clarity (Feral) now affects Druid spells and abilities that cost energy.
Pounce has been removed and its effects have been incorporated into Rake.
now has a duration of 12 seconds (up from 6 seconds), but no longer refreshes its duration on targets at or below 50% health.Revive
's mana cost has been reduced by 87%.Rip
now has a duration of 24 seconds (up from 16 seconds), but its duration is no longer extended by Shred
no longer requires the Druid
to be behind the target (See also:Facing Requirements.) and is now available to all specializations. Shred
now deals 35% more damage in addition to having double the normal chance to critically strike while stealthed.
- Ravage has been removed and its effects have been incorporated into Shred.
no longer increases the mana cost of the victim's spells. Starfall
no longer cancels when mounting. However, it can no longer hit stealthed or invisible targets.Survival Instincts
no longer requires or forces the Druid
into Cat or Bear Form
, and now lasts 6 seconds (down from 12 seconds) with a 2-minute cooldown (down from 3 minutes), and can have up to 2 charges (up from 1 charge).Thick Hide
has been removed and its effects have been incorporated into Bear Form
- Bear Form now increases armor by 250% for all Druid specializations (down from 330% for Guardian Druids, but up from 120% for non-Guardian Druids), and no longer increases Haste and Critical Strike from items by 50%, but instead causes Haste to reduce the global cooldown increases Stamina by 20% (down from 40%), and reduces magic damage taken by 10% (down from 25%).
- For Guardian Druids, Bear Form now also reduces magical damage taken by 25%, reduces chance to be critically hit by 6%, and reduces chance for attacks to be parried by 3%.
now lasts 8 seconds (up from 6 seconds) and is usable during Berserk
has been removed and its effects have been incorporated into Cat Form
now automatically transitions between Aquatic
, and Flight
forms depending on the Druid
Wild Mushrooms no longer become invisible.
Guardian Druids had increased Armor as their Mastery for a while now. However, one of the new secondary stats available to all tanks is Bonus Armor. We didn't feel that the difference of being additive vs. being a multiplier was significant enough to warrant keeping their Mastery around. Additionally, active mitigation hasn't played out as well for Guardians as it has for some other tanks.
We decided to redesign the Mastery for Guardian Druids to something that compliments the Avoidance-heavy nature of Savage Defense
, and also to improve the usability of Tooth and Claw
for more consistent damage reduction. Note that Primal Tenacity
's calculation uses the damage before any other absorbs you have, and before Tooth and Claw
's effects, so that it isn't negatively affected by any of the changes.
The maximum number of charges that can be accumulated for Savage Defense
has been reduced to make its uptime more consistent between short and long periods of tanking. Rage for Guardian Druids has been problematic throughout Mists of Pandaria. Most of their rage generation was extremely passive, and most of their button presses either didn't affect their survivability, or only trivially did so. We made changes to Haste and Critical Strike, to try to solve these rage generation problems, and improve their rotation. We also added Ursa Major
, in order to give a defensive value to the new Multistrike stat.Ursa Major
is a new passive ability for Guardian Druids.
- Ursa Major causes Multistrikes from auto attacks, Lacerate periodic damage, and Mangle to grant the Druid the Ursa Major effect. Ursa Major increases maximum health by 2% for 25 seconds. When the effect is refreshed, the remaining portion is added to the new effect.
Auto-attacks now generate 5 Rage (down from 10.9 Rage).Bear Form
no longer increases Haste and Critical Strike from items by 50%, but instead causes Haste to reduce the global cooldown.Faerie Fire
no longer has a chance to reset Mangle
now costs 20 Rage (down from 30 Rage).Mangle
now generates 10 Rage (down from 15 Rage).Lacerate
now generates 2 Rage, has no cooldown (down from a 3-second cooldown), and the periodic bleed effect triggers every 1 second (down from 3 seconds).Primal Fury
now generates 8 Rage (down from 15 Rage) from non-periodic critical strikes (up from only Auto Attacks and Mangle
can now accumulate 2 charges (down from 3 charges), and regenerates a charge every 12 seconds (up from 9 seconds). Soul of the Forest
(Guardian) now increases Mangle’s Rage generation by 5 (down from 10).Thrash
now generates 1 Rage every time it deals direct or periodic damage, has no cooldown (down from a 6-second cooldown), but no longer has a chance to reset Mangle
's cooldown.Tooth and Claw
can now accumulate 2 charges, its effects stack on the target, and are affected by Resolve
Feral Druids received one major change, and few tweaks beyond what's been mentioned above in Ability Pruning and Facing Requirements. Combo Points are now stored "on the player", meaning that when you switch targets, any accumulated Combo Points remain with you. Primal Fury
was changed to let it affect area attacks as well. Critical strike chance of Ferocious Bite
was changed in order to increase the value of Critical Strike. Glyph of Savage Roar
was reworked to better achieve its intended effect.
- Combo Points for Feral Druids are now shared across all targets, and are no longer lost when switching targets.
- Ferocious Bite now has double the normal chance to critically strike against bleeding targets (instead of having an additional 25% chance to critically strike).
- Primal Fury now also grants a combo point for area attacks that critically strike the Druid's primary target.
- Glyph of Savagery has been renamed Glyph of Savage Roar, and now grants a free 5 Combo Point Savage Roar when leaving Prowl, instead of allowing Savage Roar to be used with 0 Combo Points.
We have some extensive changes for Balance Druid
s. One of our guiding principles with game design is that things should be "easy to learn, hard to master". We're not particularly happy with the Moonkin
rotation because it was actually hard to learn, and easy to master (especially with regards to periodic damage effects no longer snapshotting). Energy and Eclipse
mechanics were not intuitive for many newer players. Once you became accustomed to the rotation, there wasn't much additional depth to mastering it; maintain two DoTs, hit these other two buttons whenever they light up, and spam one of two buttons in between. In order to try to make it easier to learn, but also add some gameplay depth and challenge we're making a significant revision to the rotation. The list of changes is quite dense, so here's a summary of the changes.Summary of changes to Balance:
- Balance Energy is a bar that automatically cycles back and forth between Lunar and Solar sides, like night and day. The closer to one end that the bar is, the more damage that side's spells do.
- Balance Druids now have four rotational spells.
Starfire: Lunar direct damage spell
Cast when the Lunar side is stronger
: Solar direct damage spell
- Cast when the Solar side is stronger
: Lunar periodic damage spell. While closer to Solar, this button is replaced with Sunfire
, a Solar periodic damage spell.
- Maintain both effects where possible
: Direct damage spell that benefits from whichever side is stronger. Has up to 3 charges, and buffs the damage of the next few Wrath
s or Starfire
- Cast when able to follow up with a few strong Wraths or Starfires.
That's the basics of the new Moonkin
rotation. There's room for improvement beyond that, learning to optimally maintain both periodic damage effects while maximizing their damage, while maximizing their damage, timing Starsurge
s to optimize the benefit of its buff, make use of Starfall
for area damage, and taking advantage of the strengths of each side (such as Moonfire
having significant differences now). Here are the full details of the changes.Details of changes to Balance:
- Balance Energy system has been redesigned. Balance Energy is a bar that cycles back and forth between Lunar and Solar sides, like night and day, with a 40 second cycle time (from Lunar to Solar and back to Lunar).
Balance Energy is no longer generated through spells, talents, or other effects anymore.
has been redesigned.
- Eclipse inspires the Druid with the power of the moon and the sun, causing the damage of Lunar and Solar spells to be increased by up to 30% based on how close Balance Energy levels are to the appropriate side.
Example: With 0 Balance Energy, the damage bonus is evenly split between Lunar and Solar, and the Druid receives a 15% increase to damage for both spell types. With 80 Solar Energy, the Druid receives a 27% damage increase to Solar spells and a 3% damage increase to Lunar spells.
Mastery: Total Eclipse now increases the maximum damage bonus of Eclipse
by 12% (increasing with Mastery).
The damage of damage-over-time effects changes dynamically as Eclipse
now increases the rate that Balance Energy cycles by 300% while channeled.Astral Storm
has been removed.Celestial Alignment
has been redesigned.Hurricane
now has a range of 35 yards (up from 30 yards), but is only available to Balance and Restoration Druid
: Chosen of Elune
now increases spell damage by 15% while active (was a 25% increase to Arcane and Nature damage, but only while Eclipse
is active).Lunar Shower
has been redesigned and renamed into Astral Showers
- Astral Showers calls upon greater Lunar and Solar energy to permanently empower the Druid's Moonfire and Sunfire spells.
Moonfire's periodic damage effect duration is increased by 100%.
- Sunfire's periodic damage effect is now applied to all enemies within 5 yards of the target.
now has a base duration of 20 seconds (up from 14 seconds), but is no longer extended by Starfire
critical strikes. Upon reaching 100 Lunar Energy, the next Moonfire
deals 100% additional initial damage.Shooting Stars
now adds 1 full charge of Starsurge
when it triggers, and now has a 5% chance to trigger when the most recent Moonfire
deals periodic damage. This chance is doubled on critical strikes.Soul of the Forest
(Balance) has been redesigned.
- Soul of the Forest (Balance) now increases the damage bonus from Lunar and Solar Empowerment by an additional 15%.
now shares charges with Starsurge
, and has no cooldown of its own. It also now hits all nearby enemies (up from 2 nearby enemies).Starfire
now has a 3 second cast time (up from 2.7 seconds).Starsurge
now has 3 charges and a 30 second recharge time (instead of a 15 second cooldown). Starsurge
now also grants Lunar or Solar Empowerment
is no longer its own spell and replaces Moonfire
on the action bar whenever Balance Energy is on the Solar side. Sunfire
now has a base duration of 24 seconds (up from 14 seconds), but is no longer extended by Wrath
critical strikes. Enemies may still suffer from both Moonfire
's periodic damage components simultaneously. Upon reaching 100 Solar Energy, the next Sunfire
deals 100% additional initial damage.Wild Mushroom
(Balance) now begins snaring enemies immediately when summoned, lasts 20 seconds, and can no longer be detonated to deal damage.
has an amazingly strong effect (pour a ton of healing into the whole Raid/Party
), but had excessive complexity for a relatively simple task (5 different targets per tick, a short HoT, stacking, varied strength by raid size). So, we simplified it significantly. It still will be used just as it always has been.
- Tranquility now heals every party and Raid member within range every 2 seconds for 8 seconds. It no longer places a periodic effect on each target. The total amount of healing it generates in Raids should be approximately the same as before this change.
Restoration ChangesRestoration Druid
s got a few changes as well. In Patch 5.4, a glyph was introduced where you could choose to attach your Efflorescence to Wild Mushroom
, instead of to Swiftmend
. That was a rousing success and the glyph was taken by nearly all Restoration Druid
s. It felt like a much better situation to us so we decided to remove the glyph, and bake that gameplay in permanently. Genesis
and Wild Mushroom
fill a similar need for burst healing, so Wild Mushroom
has been removed; leaving Wild Mushroom
to focus on the Efflorescence effect.
Secondly, while we are fine with the playstyle where a Restoration Druid
blankets their Raid in Rejuvenations, the Swift Rejuvenation passive made that too strong, and limited their scaling with Haste. We removed that passive to encourage using other spells more, but still allow Rejuvenation
blanketing as a viable playstyle. Omen of Clarity
got changed to not trigger more often with Tree of Life
as it was too strong in our new healing model. Soul of the Forest
was also redesigned to fit better with Restoration and Genesis
based on the new design for periodic effects.
- Genesis has been redesigned.
Genesis now consumes all of the Druid's Rejuvenation effects on party or raid members within 60 yards and applies the Genesis effect to them instead. Genesis heals the target for an amount equal to the remaining healing from the consumed Rejuvenation effects over 3 seconds.
now heals for 50% of the critical heal (up from 30%).
Force of Nature Treant's healing now benefits from Mastery. Incarnation: Tree of Life
no longer enhances Lifebloom
. Instead, it also enhances Rejuvenation
, increasing its healing by 50%, and reducing its cost by 50%. Heart of the Wild
(Restoration) now increases healing done by 35% (up from 25%).Omen of Clarity
(Restoration) can now only be triggered by the most recently applied Lifebloom
, and now causes the next Regrowth
to be free.Soul of the Forest
for Restoration Druid
s has been redesigned.
Swift Rejuvenation has been removed.Wild Mushroom
(Restoration) now has a 30-second cooldown, lasts for 30 seconds, provides periodic healing to nearby allies, and no longer collects Rejuvenation
The level 90-Talent row for Druid
s was designed to encourage hybrid gameplay. We decided that, while you shouldn't have to give up a significant amount of your primary role throughput in order to gain the off-role benefit, you also don't need to gain an actual benefit to your primary role throughput benefit either. We've reduced the power of their primary role benefit, making them roughly neutral in their effect on your primary role. Note that the increase to off-role healing from Nature's Vigil
is not actually a buff (see Retuning Healing Spells and Player Health and Resilience above).Heart of the Wild
no longer provides an increase to Hit, Expertise, Stamina, Agility, and Intellect while active.Nature's Vigil
, while active, increases single-target damage and healing caused by healing spells by 30% (up from 25%), and all single-target damage spells also heal a nearby friendly target for 40% of the damage done (up from 25%). Its healing now targets allies within 40 yards of the Druid
(instead of within 40 yards of the target).