So I’ve been putting together my feedback for a week or so of testing. For context, I’m a veteran from vanilla who was very hard core back then but slowly got more casual before becoming an on-off player past MoP. I played a lot of Legion and mostly skipped BFA entirely but had a big resurgence with Classic where I put in a lot of time. Of all of this I have mained a Druid for literally all of it outside MoP (where I played a Monk) I enjoy the Classic rpg style leanings lot more than modern Wows on rail leanings but I promise I love both dearly so I apologise if I ruffle feathers.
Warning: Long, Long Post inc:
General Druid -
Can we please have Mark of the Wild back as a baseline?
It feels weird to think about but I really, really miss our buff the most. The unpruning is a godsend for the most part but the small social stuff is what I miss most and Classic feels so much more friendly. Things like players being able to throw buffs on each other really add to that community and every time I meet someone who lends me a hand I automatically reach for Mark and am saddened to remember it is gone.
Heart of the Wild is not something that should be a “talent”:
I firmly believe this spell is the most “Druid” ability that has ever been in the game (apart from Symbiosis but oh boy was that problematic…). The flexibility it provides and the options it enables is literally the Druid calling card. It says “Hybrid” like nothing else!
Sooooo, why is this a talent? It should be baseline! I doubt you will never find a better ability to be our capstone ability (reaching level 100 or similiar).
Restoration is the only spec that feels completely isolated from the rest of the class:
A big feeling I have for Druids in Shadowlands is that specializations are being treated as option for focussing on aspects again and not entirely seperate mini-classes. I am thrilled by this and Druids in particular are looking much more like Druids and not just "Moonkin, “Bear” etc. We use Cat and bear in all specs and even things like Moonfire have relevance to Feral in talents etc.
The one exception is Resto, which still feels very oddly seperate. You pretty much can’t heal beyond topping yourself up as a Non-Resto unless you specifically take Resto affinity. No other spec has this issue and its a bit jarring. Furthermore I consider Hots an iconic part of the Druid toolkit and yet the only one we get has a cast time? With so few heals available baseline new players get almost no idea what Resto is like to encourage them to pick that specialization.
I feel this is wrong. Rolling hots on your party between mobs is an important part of Druid flavour and hotting yourself between pulling mobs to “heal as you go” is very iconic and should be experienced by all Druids.
Therefore I propose that Rejuvenation should be a baseline spell. Resto affinity still offers plenty (more than the other options by far I believe actually?) and 2 hots to play with isn’t going to break the complexity bank.
General Irritations -
Prowls animation looks ridiculous moving at full speed with a standard run animation. It used to have its own animation for sneaking. It looked a bit silly when they decided you should move full speed in stealth but it looked a lot less silly than a full bounding sprint. Can we have it back or a new version of it back please?
Can Druids please get Maul or a similiar ability back for bear form baseline? As any spec other than Guardian, you are just sitting and autoing in between Mangles unless you Swipe (unthematic and risks breaking cc) and thats exceptionally boring. Heck just removing the cooldown from Mangle would work.
- Can Druid form appearances please be changed at either the same npc that lets you swap epic flight form out or just our general Druid class trainers (lord knows they need something to do now)? It feels incredibly un-thematic for a “barber” to swap my Seal to a Dolphin.
On that note: Consider replacing barbers with something like an Ethereal that alters you magically. With even gender swaps being in-game now, we’re well past just hair alterations here.
- It would be nice if Moonkin form got a customisation tab option like the other forms too.
Balance Spec (My main spec of recent) -
- Controversial Opinion: I have always disliked Moonkin and thats only gotten worse over time with the removal of effects like Moonkin aura that are actually tied to the form. Now it really just feels like a restriction on our casting that happens to make us a bit more tanky. I am aware that it is the holy grail of the spec to many so I would never advocate its removal. Rather it should be a talent.
My request is that you baseline Treants for Balance and replace the ability on the first talent tier row with Moonkin form so those who love the form aren’t forced to go without it long for levelling. Then just tie a small dps increase to it so it competes fairly with the other 2 passive options on the row. Boom, Moonkin lovers keep their form, the rest of us take a passive. No-one loses dps or active abilities and those of us who want to be traditional Druids like Malfurion can.
Can the Level 40 talent options for Balance please get an active ability option? All 3 being passives or a replacement feels bad when ones forced to pick between some very cool spells later. Swapping one of the options with New Moon or Fury of Elune would be my personal hope as I loved having both during Legion and choosing makes me sad.
I like the return of Eclipse but it isn’t exactly user friendly to figure out. I’d suggest a tab for the spellbook giving a rough rundown on how your specs unique mechanic works. I think such a system would likely benefit everyone not just Balance Druids. Alternatively, the idea someone mentioned earlier for reusing the old Blessing of the Ancients is a very good one.
Moonfire is not under my “Balance” spell book tab, only the main “Druid” tab. Bug?
Feral Spec -
- Feral feels a bit under-equipped utility wise compared to Balance. I see little reason to take it over the other but I also think making spells exclusive like Stampeding Roar is a bad option as Druids finally feel whole again. Instead I advocate for Feral spec alone to get something new to emphasise their focus (cat form).
I propose a blast from the past, give Feral “Play Dead” from way back in Classic beta and it was also one of MoPs “Symbiosis” options. (For those unaware: https://wow.gamepedia.com/Play_Dead ). I feel this would emphasises their rogue aspect well and provide some great general utility that isn’t just a straight group buff like LotP.
Note: I like Lotp but in a world where such utility isn’t common it would only throw the pendulum out the other direction and make Balance look terrible. That and its an incredibly unexciting passive. General sentiments to BFA passives seems to be quite clear we have quite enough of that gameplay as is.
- Dislike that Shred has become a “catch all” ability, it requiring you be behind the target was iconic. Please restore that function and just return mangle to Cat as well as Bear.
Phew, got it all out. More eventually but i’m glad I got my initial writeup done!