How to play a Druid in WoW dungeons – Balance spec

Twoo! Playing a giant laser-spouting owl is fun, but sometimes WoW dungeons can be hard or unpleasant as a newer player – people get annoyed for no reason, you die a lot, and it’s all very confusing. It’s hard to know how to play a druid in WoW. Hopefully we’ll be able to help you out:

I keep dying!

Don’t use too much AoE.

Balance druids are great at Area of Effect (AOE) damage, but if you do too much damage before the tank has had a chance to control the fight (by building up threat against your opponents), you’ll annoy the monsters and probably get killed by them.

In particular, don’t use AoE if you’re likely to catch mobs that the tank does not yet have under control. Be especially careful with your Starfall spell.

Don’t stand too close to the boss

Druids can perform any role, but as a balance druid you’ve chosen to be a ranged damage-dealer. That means that, for most fights, you should be standing some distance away from the boss, hitting him at range. If you’re too close to the boss, you’re in danger of receiving damage from the boss’s close-combat abilities.

Some bosses require you to stand close to the boss. See our quick start dungeon guides to find out when that is.

My teammates say I am a “ninja”

Don’t roll need on armor that is not suitable for your class and role.

Druids are unique among classes in WoW. They’re the only class capable of fulfilling all four of the roles within a party – tank, healer, ranged DPS and melee DPS. If you’ve chosen to play a Balance druid, though, you should only roll need on armor suitable for that specific role.

Druids can wear both cloth armor and leather armor, but you should only roll on leather armour. Your most important stat is Intelligence: do not roll on an item that does not have Intelligence unless it is a trinket.

My tank is annoyed with me / other people say I am tanking

Don’t attack before the tank

The tank should start each fight, and will attack the mobs first. Don’t attack first – even if the tank is already running towards the mobs, be sure you don’t start casting a spell which will land before she gets there.

Don’t use Bear form

While it might be fun to transform into a bear and charge at your enemies, as a Balance druid you shouldn’t ever have a need to do so. The druid bear form is intended for use when you are taking the role of the tank. If you’re not tanking, don’t Bear form. If you do, you’ll make it harder for the real tank to control the fight, and you’ll do less damage to boot.

Don’t use Typhoon without Glyph of Typhoon

Typhoon is a great AoE spell, but it has the side-effect of knocking all your opponents away. If the tank has just spent the past few seconds carefully positioning them, this can be quite annoying! The Glyph of Typhoon removes the knock-back effect from the spell, making it safe to use, but if you don’t have the glyph, be very careful about when you use Typhoon.

My teammates say my damage sucks

Make sure you’ve spent all of your talent points

Talent Points are additional powers you get as you level up. To see them, press “N”. You should ensure that you’ve spent all the talent points you have available. If you’re stuck, you can get a good idea for where to put talent points by reading our balance druid boomkin guide.

Make sure you have the correct glyphs

You can find Glyphs from the bottom of your Talent window (press “N” and look for the Glyphs tab at the bottom). Most glyphs are not that important, but you need to have the following Prime glyphs – fill up as many Prime Glyph slots as you currently have:

  • Glyph of Insect Swarm
  • Glyph of Moonfire
  • Glyph of Wrath

You buy glyphs from the Auction House. Some may be very expensive – it’s worth saving up for them (see our guide to making enough money to buy things on the Auction House) . You, or a guildmate, may be able to make the glyphs you need if you have the Inscription profession.

Make sure you’re using the right abilities

If you’re struggling to do high damage, try one of the following very simplified sequences. You should work your way down the list from the top to the bottom, using the first ability that’s available each time.

  • Cast Insect Swarm on the monster if it’s not already cast.
  • Cast Moonfire on the monster if it’s not already cast.
  • If some of your abilities are glowing on your ability bar, cast Wrath (if the buff is Solar Eclipse) or Starfire (if the buff is Lunar Eclipse).
  • Cast Starfire if your eclipse gauge is heading for Solar, or Wrath if the gauge is heading for Lunar.

If you are not high enough level to have some of those abilities: Ignore the abilities you don’t have yet and just use the others.

This is a very simplified priority system, which won’t get the most out of your abilities but which should enable you to reach acceptable levels of damage-dealing. Once you’ve mastered the simple system, you can move on to the more complex priority systems detailed in our Balance druid rotation guide.

Use Moonkin form

When you reach level 29, you’ll be able to transform into Moonkin form. This is the best form to use as a Balance druid, so you should remain shapeshifted to Moonkin form throughout the dungeon.

My teammates say my gear is bad

Don’t use gear with the wrong stats

Your most important stat is Intelligence: every piece of equipment you’re wearing except your trinkets should provide a bonus to that stat. Useful secondary stats are Hit Rating, Spirit, Haste and Mastery. If a piece of gear does not provide a bonus to at least one of those stats, you probably shouldn’t be wearing it.

At lower levels, it’s acceptable to wear some cloth gear, if you can’t find equivalent or better gear in leather, but you should never roll need on cloth gear.

My teammates don’t want me healing – but I have healing spells!

Don’t use your healing spells unless it’s an emergency

Your healing spells are useful for soloing, but in a group you’re better focusing on doing ranged spell damage, and letting the healer do the healing.

It might seem like you’re helping the healer out by healing yourself, but in actual fact, by taking yourself away from doing damage, you’re making her job harder. You’ll need to leave Moonkin form in order to use any of your healing spells, which remove all of your major damage-dealing abilities until you re-enter Moonkin form.