Taken from my guide written for a 1.12.1 private server, reformatted for reddit. Due to the 40,000 character limit on posts, this has been 'pruned' of a lot of the Pserver specific information.
Tips, Tricks, Addons and Info for new Ferals.
Stats, Race and Effective Health.
Gearing your Feral, release, DM and AV.
Leveling your Druid, skills, and finisher usage in world PvE.
Consumables. 1. Intro
Most people who want to play feral will hear that you're only there to buff crit on the Rogues and Warriors, provide Innervate for the healers, your DPS sucks and you can't tank anything that isn't a 5 man dungeon.
Not true, especially in the early part of gearing.
Step one. Identify who your main 'competitors' are. Everyone compares us to Rogues (both wear leather, both do dps), without factoring in the differences between the classes, gearing, and the extra utility we bring to a raid. Rogues certainly can't tank the amount of encounters we can for example, especially in a clutch environment. So many people seem to focus around having the exact, perfectly reliable 40 people needed with perfect class representation for each encounter. Doesn't happen, and no guild running content with less than 40 players will turn down a dedicated and effective player.
The other 'Hybrids' of Vanilla are;
Warriors Priests Paladins Shamans
Comparing what we bring to a raid compared to what the DPS specs of those classes bring, we have;
Wipe Protection – So called 'Battle Rez' Raid Buffs – Mark of the Wild, Thorns, Leader of the Pack, Innervate Dispelling – Dispel Curse. You will be decursing every raid, manybosses. Off Tanking and DPS from one spec, tanking/dps and healing from one spec with 0/30/20 +1 build.
While other Hybrids can bring some of these, none of them can bring all of them in one set of gear and one spec. In relation to the other classes, presuming equal levels of gear, we sit;
Less DPS than a Fury Warrior. Equal DPS to an Elemental Shaman or Shadow Priest. More DPS than a Ret Paladin. Substantially more DPS than an Enhancement Shaman.
This is a basic table, that depends highly on the gearing situation. For example, when first entering MC in a raid in blues/greens, a well itemised Druid can do significantly more dps than some pures. However, as other classes push ahead with Tier drops and especially weapon drops, we will start to fall behind. It is not unusual to find a Druid doing the same DPS as other hybrids but being 6-8 ilvls behind, this is due to the fact that until AQ40 comes, there simply aren't that many truly top tier Druid drops. We scale excellently, but between early game blues and end game (AQ/Naxx) epics there aren't that many drops for us.
Druids are probably the best hybrids in the game, and there are 4 builds that you can take into PvE as a Feral and do reasonable with. However, it is important to note that to be an effective feral, you need to be able to swap between tank, dps and sometimes healer within the same raid. You cannot expect to just heal or just tank, if you set yourself up to do just one thing, you will struggle to find groups or a guild. A good feral is a boon to any guild, a bad feral who is blinded into just one role is a wasted spot. This is especially true in 1.12.1, since we get the 1.2.0 (65%-180% armour on bear form, 125% to 360% from Dire Bear form.), 1.4.0 (Shapeshifting removes Polymorph) and 1.6.0 (Shapeshifting removes Slows) to our Bear spec. Many detractors from early wow remember Bears trying to tank before these buffs, 1.2.0 was a significant boost to our survivability. 2. Tips, Tricks, Addons and Info for new Ferals.
Chance on Hit: Enchants (eg Crusader) and Weapons (shooting shadow bolts, chance to cause bleed, etc.) that state "Chance on Hit to X" do not work when shape shifted. Equip: Items that state "Equip: Chance on Hit" that are not on a weapon do work when shape shifted. This includes things like Hand of Justice. Weapon Base Damage:
Weapon damage has no effect on your damage in feral form. Weapon Enchants:
Weapon enchants such as +Agility/Strength do apply when in feral form. Many people will be used to +damage enchants also working, with each point of damage being equal to ~14 AP. This means a max rolled 'of the Quality' weapon with +7 weapon damage is worth around 98 AP, or 40.8 Strength. However, this is a common Mangos bug that will not apply here. Weapon on use: Weapons with "on use" effects such as the Manual Crowd Pummeler do work. Weapon Skills: We do not need to level weapon skills when in Feral form, we are always considered to be max skill for our level. A level 60 Druid with 1 point of staff skill in Kitty form is presumed to have 300 weapon skill when usings claws. Armour:
The armour 'cap' is 75% damage reduction. The tooltip can show more, but effectively any armour beyond that point is wasted, unless a boss has a sunder mechanic. 21,855 armour in Bear form gets you to the 75% cap. [SOURCE] Armour kits/enchants: Armour kits and armour enchants that give + armour do not scale multiplicative with the bonus armour in Bear form, instead they are additive. For example, if you have a cloak with 169 Armour like this, enchant it with +70 Armour, we would get, 169 + (169 * 1.8) + 70 = 543.2. This is further affected by Thick Hide (see below). Armour (Thick Hide): Thick Hide is a 5 point talent that adds 2% armour bonus per point. This is multiplicative, not additive. What this means is that at 5/5 points, you will receive the full extra 10% modifier for your total armour. In 1.12.1 in Bear Form the armour formula is X + (X * 1.8) + N, where X = armour value of an item and N = Armour enchant/kit. With Thick Hide this becomes (X + (X * 1.8) * 1.10) + N. To use the above example of the Elementium Threaded Cloak, this would become; (169 + (169 * 1.8) * 1.10) + 70 = 590.52 Armour. Threat:
Bear Druids have the same threat modifiers as Warriors: 130% for Bear Form and Defensive Stance, or 149.5% if you have 5/5 Defiance or 5/5 Feral Instinct. Unlike Warriors however, our base tanking abilities do not have an additive threat component, instead, they are multiplicative. Each point of damage done by Maul or Swipe does an additional 0.75 threat, before we take into account the form modifiers. For example, if a Maul does 200 damage, it does 200 * 1.75 = 350 threat, or 3501.3 * 1.15 for a total of 523 threat when including Bear Form and 5/5 Feral Instinct. *
Threat:** Since we do not have an additive threat component like Warriors, we do reduced threat against high armour enemies, and increased threat against low armour enemies. Crits greatly increase our threat. 3. Stats, Race and 'Effective Health' (level 60)
Stamina: 1 Stamina = 10 health. Strength: 1 Strength = 2 Attack Power. Agility: 1 Agility = 1 Attack Power. 1 Attack Power = 1 DPS. Agility: 57 Agility = 1% Critical Strike Chance Intellect: 1 Intellect = 15 Mana.
For DPS with at least 33% raid buffed crit chance or above; Hit (to 9%) > Str > Agi > Crit > AP For DPS with less than 33% raid buffed crit chance; Hit (to 9%) > Agi > Str > Crit > AP For Tanking; Agility > Armour > Dodge/Stamina > Hit > Crit
Tauren/Nelf are about on par when it comes to tanking, Taurens have more natural strength and HP, Nelfs have more natural Agility and the racial dodge, it evens out, and there isn't one race to go. Feral DPS the Tauren has the minor advantage due to the bonus Strength, but it works out as just a few dps difference at 60.
Effective Health is a term that cropped up during TBC and was especially relevant during the Stam stacking days of WotLK. It can still be 'reverse-applied' to Vanilla however, in simple terms, it is Health / (100-[the amount of % reduced by armor or DR (Damage Reduction)]) = Physical EHP. This gives you a basic idea of how much total damage an enemy needs to do in order to kill you outright, and will allow you to decide on upgrades in the late game when balancing Armour vs Stamina. Note; we do not lose out on Rage from dodges, so unlike Warriors we do not need to worry about Rage Starvation due to Dodge/Agility, we cannot parry. Stacking pure EH is a fine way to gear a Druid tank, especially for beginners.
We calculate the (100-DR) using a decimal place scale, that means 100 is represented by 1, and your percentage is what you take away. 50% Damage reduction would therefore be 1 - 0.5 = 0.5.
An example of EH; 5000hp, 50% Armour Damage Reduction, would become; 5000/((1-.5=)0.5)=10,000
This can be as complicated as can be without changing the way it works, for example; 7232hp and a 54.7 DR would be 7232/((1-.547=).453)=15,964.67 EH. You can then re-run the numbers increasing health/Armour and see which gives you the higher EH, letting you choose your upgrades more effectively. 4. Gearing your Feral, (release, DM and AV)
The hard part about gearing a Druid in vanilla is how our itemisation works, we have awesome, excellent scaling, but awful gear options. Most Druid players gear like a Rogue, play like a Rogue, then wonder why their DPS is awful, hence perpetuating the 'lol druid feral dps is awful' stereotype.
We only gain 1 AP per point of Agility. WE ONLY GAIN 1 AP PER POINT OF AGILITY.
Similar to Shamans, we get all of our AP from Strength and +AP items. While a certain amount of Agility is desirable for crit (and Agi is usually on any piece of leather with strength on any way) we want to try and ensure a 2:1 ratio of Strength to Agility for DPS.
The second mistake most inexperienced Druids make is swapping their weapon out for higher base damage. Weapon damage has no effect on Druid DPS, they are quite literally just stat sticks, nothing more. A level 40 2hander with 20 Str will be of higher benefit to you for DPS than a lvl 60 epic with no Str but a higher damage range.
This section shows how to gear your feral on Classic, with the 'usual' pre-raid BiS list, tuned for how the guys are going to set up the staggered release of content. So, step one, what is the release scheduleprobably going to look like?
Release (P1) - 16 debuff slot limit. Release with Maraudon available. (P2) - Dire Maul & associated quests released., Kazzak and Azuregos released. (P3) - BWL released. (P4) - ZG & Dragons of Nightmare released. (P5) - Silithus revamp. AQ 20 & 40 released. Tier 0.5 quest line activated. (P6) - Naxxramas released.
This means, the initial push for Server Firsts and most peoples first Onyxia/MC raid clears will come before the release of Dire Maul and well before AV epics are available.
This is a PvE guide, I will therefore discount any and all PvP gear except for the AV REP gear, since that doesn't require the PvP grind the rest of Vanilla PvP gear does.
While each person will require their own stat weighting and analysis of how stats affect them, I've gone with the following basic rule of thumb to make for an easily comparable list.
Bear: Armour > Stam > Agi > Hit/Dodge > Crit > Str Hit% - 9% to never miss an attack. Agility - 1 Agi = 2 Armour & 1 AP, ~20 Agi = 1% Dodge & 1% Crit. Stamina - 1 Stam = 10 HP, 12 HP with 5/5 Heart of the Wild (HotW) DR% = Armour / (Armour + 400 + 85 * (Attacker Level + 4.5 * (Attacker Level - 59))) Dodge% = 0.9% + (Agi / 20) + Miscellaneous Contributions + (Attacker's Attack Skill * 0.04)
Kitty: Hit > Str > Agility > Crit > AP Hit% - 9% to never miss an attack. Agility - 1 Agi = 1AP, ~20 Agi = 1% Crit. Attack Power - ~14 AP = 1 DPS. Strength - 1 Str = 2 AP, 2.4 AP with 5/5 HotW.
Notable Early Game Sets, Green Items and quest choices.
The biggest choice in the early gearing stage for a feral druid to make is, Mark or Tyranny or Blackhands Breath? They are mutually exclusive quest rewards, and both are BiS for a long time (Tyranny is BiS full stop).
The Shadowcraft Rogue set is a very solid set. While technically designed for Rogues (and we cannot upgrade it to the fantastic T0.5) the set bonuses all work for us (energy proc obviously useless when tanking). If you are able to get a couple of pieces the 200 bonus armour is very nice while you are building out the rest of your set. 6 pieces of this set as a cat is a perfectly viable way to gear as your are building out your main DPS set.
There are some Green items that with good rolls can outdo some of the starter gear on this list, similar to Mages BiS cloak in MC being the green cloak with +20 frost damage on it. Things to look out for include;
Green "of the Tiger" boots with more StAgi than Sandstalker Ankleguards. Green "of the Tiger" prismatic rings with both StAgi on them. Release, Bear
Helm - Bone Ring Helm - Rattlegore, Scholomance Neck - Talisman of Evasion - Warmaster Voone, LBRS while waiting to get Amulet of the Darkmoon - 1200 Darkmoon Faire tickets. Shoulder - Atal'ai Spaulders (Stamina Variant) - ST Troll Miniboss. Due to the difficulty of farming Atal'ai Spaulders (drop %, not difficulty of the instance), Wyrmtongue Shoulders - Balnazzar, Stratholme Living is a more realistic easily farmable alternative. Back - Stoneshield Cloak is technically BiS, but it is a world drop. A more targettable drop is something like Shadow Prowler's Cloak - Drakkisath, UBRS. Chest - Technically Breastplate of Bloodthirst is BiS, but it requires a Pristine Hide. The craftable Warbear Harness is a much more easily targettable pre-raid item. Bracers - Malefic Bracers - Trash, Scholomance. Hands - Slaghide Gauntlets of the Monkey - Urok Doomhowl, LBRS are not replaced until AQ40, non-negotiable BiS. Waist - Frostbite Girdle - Ras Frostwhisper, Scholomance. Legs - Warstrife Leggings - General Angerforge, BRD. Feet - Cadaverous Walkers, Scholomance Mini Bosses. Rings - Ring of Protection (quest) and Archaedic Stone (Stamina/Agility version). Trinkets - Mark of Tyranny (quest) and Smoking Heart of the Mountain (enchanting 265). Mark of Tyranny is exclusive vs Blackhands Breadth (Kitty list). Idol - Idol of Brutality- Magistrate Barthilas, Stratholme (1.10.0). Weapon - Warden Staff is the undisputed king, but it is also a very rare world drop and expensive to get. Twig of the World Tree is a more realistic first weapon, it's another world drop, but substantially more common and cheaper. It is perfectly acceptable to use a more DPS orientated weapon until DM releases and you can farm Unyielding Maul. Fist of Omokk - Highlord Omokk, LBRS is a good starting place. Release, Cat
Helm - If Powershifting - Wolfshead Helm - Crafted If NOT powershifting - Eye of Rend - Rend, UBRS Neck - Mark of Fordring - In Dreams, Fordring Questline, EPL. while waiting to get Amulet of the Darkmoon - 1200 Darkmoon Faire tickets. Shoulder - Truestrike Shoulders - Overseer Emberguard, UBRS. Back - Cape of the Black Baron - Baron Rivendare, Strat Chest - Cadaverous Armour - Mini Bosses, Scholomance. Bracers - Shadowcraft Bracer's - Sholo/Strat Trash. Hands - Devilsaur Gauntlets (crafted) are BiS if you are completing the 2 set bonus, if not then Gargoyle Slashers - Kirtonos, Scholomance. Waist - Cloudrunner Girdle - Quartermaster Zilgris, LBRS. Legs - Devilsaur Leggings (crafted)if you are running the 2 set bonus, otherwise Shadowcraft Pants - Baron Rivendare, Stratholme. Feet - Sandstalker Ankleguards - Zerrilis, ZF. are technically BiS, but are a pain to farm since they are a rare drop from a rare spawn. Swiftfoot Treads are a more likely starting point, since they come from a quest. Rings - Blackstone Ring - Princess, Maraudon. and Myrmidon's Signet (world drop). Trinkets - Blackhand's Breadth (quest) and Hand of Justice - Emperor, BRD. Heart of Wyrmthalak - Wyrmthalak, LBRS can be worthwhile if you are still waiting for a drop and fighting mobs weak to fire damage. Horde Only: Rune of the Guard Captain (quest). Blackhands Breadth is exclusive vs Mark of Tyranny (Bear list). Idol - Idol of Ferocity - Lord Roccor, BRD (1.10.0). Weapon - Fist of Omokk - Highlord Omokk, LBRS. Raid Upgrades and Patch Releases
This next section is drops that are 'feral-centric' drops. This means raid drops where a feral gets more from the item than a warrior for tanking items, or items where the feral gets more from the item than a DPS would. If they are equal for all classes, they will not be on the list, as you don't have claim to a 'class specific upgrade' if it is as useful for you as it is for anyone else. Mainly, that comes down to what Armour Class the item is and how much Strength/Armour it has on it. In the case of ZG, if you have the MC/BWL drops, there is very little 'druid specific' or 'druid orientated' drops that you could justify taking before another class. Any items not on the list you will be competing against other DPS for.
1.3.0 Dire Maul, Bear Upgrades
Replace Talisman of Evasion with Evil Eye Pendant - Immol'thar, DM West. Replace Stoneshield Cloak with Cloak of Warding. While Wardens Staff remains your BiS goal, you now have access to Unyielding Maul - Tribute, DM North, which will make early gearing much easier.
1.3.0 Dire Maul, Cat Upgrades
Replace Wristguards of Renown with Bracers of the Eclipse - Prince Tortheldrin, DM West. Replace Myrmidons Signet with Tarnished Elven Ring - Tribute, DM North due to difficulty of farming Myrmidons, Myrmidons is technically the superior ring however. Replace Heart of Wyrmthalak with Counterattack Lodestone - Tribute, DM North. Replace Fist of Omokk with Bonecrusher (quest).
1.5.0 AV, Bear Upgrades
1.5.0 AV, Cat Upgrades
Replace Magma Forged Band with Don Julio's Band. The Unstoppable Force is inferior to Bonecrusher, and harder to get.
Onyxia Drops, Bear Upgrades
Eskhandar's Collar Onyxia Tooth Pendant - Hit rating if needed, otherwise, FR set.
Onyxia Drops, Cat Upgrades
Onyxia Tooth Pendant.
MC Drops, Bear Upgrades
Fireguard Shoulders Dragon's Blood Cape Heavy Dark Iron Ring - Average upgrade for Warriors, third BiS ring in the game for a Druid tank. Lave Belt (crafted from MC drops) - Better than Taut Dragonhide Belt from BWL for a Druid Tank. Fireproof Cloak - FR set. Medallion of Steadfast Might.
MC Drops, Cat Upgrades
Wristguards of Stability Aged Core Leather Gloves - If your Rogues are all running Combat Swords then this is a solid upgrade for a cat, but ONLY if no Rogues need it.
Once out of MC, you should be in a position to decide for yourself what drops are superior for you. 5. Leveling your Druid, skills, and finisher usage in world PvE.
Presuming we have a Druid at high enough level to use each ability, we'll use 0 AP to make the math nice and easy. Rip should not be affected by armour, it will always do straight damage. FB and Claw are affected by armour, and their damage will be increased by Faerie Fire (Feral).
Q1: Is there ever a time where Claw is better than a 1 point FB?
Short Answer: From an energy usage standpoint, no, from a damage standpoint, yes.
FB will always do more damage per point of energy spent when you compare FB damage to the bonus damage awarded by the Claw ability. However, when comparing pure damage, when you add in the native white damage from Claw, Claw will always do more damage than a 1CP Bite.
If we take a level 60 Druid, with all skill levels, and presume they do an average white hit of 200 damage;
(200+115) = 315/45 = 7 damage per energy point spent with Claw R5. 229/35 = 6.54 damage per energy spent with FB rank 5 at 35 energy.
Q2: Is it better to pool my energy and use FB at 100 energy, or to use it straight away at 35 energy?
Short Answer: Use it sooner and don't waste the pooled energy.
Long Answer: The additional damage from bonus energy is always better off used towards generating more combo points, unless the mob will die before you can use one more ability.
Illustrating with rank 5 FB with 5CPs;
35 energy FB: 817/35 = 23.34 damage per energy spent. 50 energy FB: (817+40.5) = 17.15 damage per energy spent. 75 energy FB: (817+108) = 12.33 damage per energy spent. 100 energy FB: (817+175.5) = 9.925 damage per energy spent.
As you can see, the damage gained compared to the energy spent significantly diminishes the more energy you pool to use with FB.
To go from 35 to 100 energy takes 3.25 ticks. As you need to wait for a whole tick to complete to gain energy, that pushes it to 4 ticks, or 8 seconds, to wait to pool to 100, with 15 energy 'wasted' by going over the 100 energy cap. That 8 seconds gains you 175.5 damage on your FB. Using the above example Druid, that's less bonus damage than 1 melee swing.
Q3: Rip or FB?
Short Answer: R2 Rip > R1 FB, otherwise FB if both skills are within one level of each other.
Long Answer: Typically, a Rip requires all 6 ticks to do rougly equal damage to a FB before 4CP's, or 5 ticks to equal a 4+CP FB, until you get FB rank 3. Rip ticks every 2 seconds, isn't affected by mob armour and cannot crit. FB is affected by mob armour, but can crit, as a melee damage ability for 200% damage. From FB R2 - FB R4, FB remains demonstrably ahead. Rip Doesn't catch up again until R6/FB5 comparison.
Rip R2 vs FB R1;
1CP: 58/11 = 5.27 ticks to equal a 1CP FB. 2CP: 5.22 ticks to equal a 2CP FB. 3CP: 5.2 ticks to equal a 3CP FB. 4CP: 5.187 ticks to equal a 4CP FB. 5CP: 5.17 ticks to equal a 5CP FB.
As you can see from the above, a R2 Rip will always need full duration to equal an equivalent CP FB. However, as you level, the gap closes.
Rip R3 vs FB R2;
1CP: 91/15 = 6.066 ticks to equal a 1CP FB. 2CP: 6.25 ticks to equal a 2CP FB. 3CP: 6.33 ticks to equal a 3CP FB. 4CP: 6.38 ticks to equal a 4CP FB. 5CP: 6.41 ticks to equal a 5CP FB.
Rip R4 vs FB R3;
1CP: 142/23 = 6.17 ticks to equal a 1CP FB. 2CP: 6.32 ticks to equal a 2CP FB. 3CP: 6.39 ticks to equal a 3CP FB. 4CP: 6.43 ticks to equal a 4CP FB. 5CP: 6.45 ticks to equal a 5CP FB.
Rip R6 vs FB R5;
1CP: 229/45 = 5.088 ticks to equal a 1CP FB. 2CP: 5.15 ticks to equal a 2CP FB. 3CP: 5.17 ticks to equal a 3CP FB. 4CP: 5.19 ticks to equal a 4CP FB. 5CP: 5.20 ticks to equal a 5CP FB.
The only times to prioritize Rip over FB is if
a) You can't maintain melee range and need to back off to heal/bandage/LoS an ability (mainly PvP) b) Your opponent has huge amounts of armour, significantly reducing your physical damage dealt.
In all other situations, a FB will give more damage in every fight that does not last more than 10 seconds. If the fight does last more than 10 seconds, Rip will do slightly more damage than the average 5 CP FB. If FB crits, it is always better than the equivalent CP Rip.
The other important factor to bear in mind, is that as you level you get the skills at different levels, Rip usually being ~4 levels before FB. In these cases, the higher level Rip is usually the better choice. To illustrate;
From level 36-39, Rip R3 vs FB R1;
1CP: 58/15 = 3.86 ticks to equal a 1CP FB. 2CP: 3.91 ticks to equal a 2CP FB. 3CP: 3.93 ticks to equal a 3CP FB. 4CP: 3.95 ticks to equal a 4CP FB. 5CP: 3.96 ticks to equal a 5CP FB.
As you can see here, Rip only needs to tick 4 times (8 seconds) to do more damage than the equivalent CP FB non crit.
TL:DR - Faerie Fire (Feral) > Ferocious Bite > Rip > Claw to 5 CP if Rip/FB are within one level of each other. Spells, When and Why to purchase them.
Claw, Shred, Maul, Ravage all scale with basic white damage. They either have a bonus damage (weapon damage + X) or a weapon damage multiplier (X% weapon damage + Y) which means even a low level ability keeps pace with you into the higher levels. It is important to note that we do not have to worry about weapon damage or dps. This mean our low level feral combat abilities scale as long as we keep increasing our gear, and as our inbuilt damage goes up every level.
We start with Wrath (Rank 1) and Healing Touch (rank 1). This skill list presumes we;
Want to reach level 40 (Dire Bear form and slow mount) and 60 (epic mount) with as much gold as possible in order to make getting our mount as quick as possible.
Want to minimise the amount of useless or situational skills we spend gold on (most expensive part of leveling)
Start with Moonfire before switching to cat/bear. Moonfire is Arcane damage (Wrath is nature and resists much more often) and has the same range as Wrath (30 yards).
Will mainly tank or DPS when grouped while leveling.
Will self buff Mark of the Wild.
I've chosen the two best heals for us as Feral, Regrowth and Rejuvenation. Juvi is an instant cast spell that can be thrown up before switching forms or between shifting, and a rank 4 Regrowth is enough to top 1/4 of a hp bar even into the high 40's/early 50's. Between the two you should be almost unkillable unless you are going one on one with elites or higher level targets. Keep MotW buffed, open with Ravage (Rake before 32) Claw to 3/4 CP's and then FB.
Level 1 (10c)
Mark of the Wild (R1 - 10c)
Level 4 (2s)
Rejuvenation (R1 - 1s) Moonfire (R1 - 1s)
Level 6 (2s)
Thorns (R1 - 1s) Wrath (R2 - 1s)
Level 8 (2s)
Healing Touch (R2 - 2s)
Level 10 (Bear Form - Quest) (12s)
Moonfire (R2 - 3s) Demo Roar (R1 - 3s) Rejuvenation (R2 - 3s) Mark of the Wild (R2 - 3s)
Level 12 (8s)
Regrowth (R1 - 8s)
Level 14 (18s)
Bash (R1 - 9s) Healing Touch (R3 - 9s)
Level 16 (54s)
Swipe (R1 - 18s) Rejuvenation (R3 - 18s) Moonfire (R3 - 18s)
Level 18 (38s)
Maul (R2 - 19s) Regrowth (R2 - 19s)
Level 20 (1g 40s)
Cat Form (20s) Claw (R1 - 20s) Prowl (R1 - 20s) Rip (R1 - 20s) Mark of the Wild (R3 - 20s) Healing Touch (R4 - 20s) Rebirth (R1 - 20s)
Level 22 (60s)
Moonfire (R4 - 30s) Rejuvenation (R4 - 30s)
Level 24 (2g)
Rake (R1 - 40s) Swipe (R2 - 40s) Tiger's Fury (R1 - 40s) Regrowth (R3 - 40s) Remove Curse (40s)
Level 26 (1g 35s)
Dash (R1 - 45s) Maul (R3 - 45s) Abolish Poison (45s)
Level 28 (2g 50s)
Challenging Roar (50s) Claw (R2 - 50s) Rip (R2 - 50s) Moonfire (R5 - 50s) Rejuvenation (R5 - 50s)
Level 30 (1g 80s)
Travel Form (60s) Mark of the Wild (R4 - 60s) Regrowth (R4 - 60s)
Level 32 (1g 60s)
Ferocious Bite (R1 - 80s) Ravage (R1 - 80s)
Level 34 (3g)
Swipe (R3 - 1g) Moonfire (R34 - 1g) Rejuvenation (R6 - 1g)
Level 36 (2g 20s)
Pounce (R1 - 1g 10s) Rip (R3 - 1g 10s)
Level 38 (1g 20s)
Claw (R3 - 1g 20s)
Level 40 (7g)
Dire Bear Form (1g 40s) Ferocious Bite (R2 - 1g 40s) Mark of the Wild (R5 - 1g 40s) Rejuvenation (R7 - 1g 40s) Innervate (R1 - 1g 40s)
Level 44 (1g 80s)
Rip (R4 - 1g 80s)
Level 46 (2g)
Rejuvenation (R8 - 2g)
Level 48 (4g 40s)
Claw (R4 - 2g 20s) Ferocious Bite (R3 - 2g 20s)
Level 50 (2g 40s)
Mark of the Wild (R6 - 2g 40s)
Level 52 (5g 20s)
Rip (R5 - 2g 60s) Rejuvenation (R9 - 2g 60s)
Level 56 (3g)
Ferocious Bite (R4 - 3g)
Level 58 (6g 40s)
Claw (R5 - 3g 20s) Rejuvenation (R10 - 3g 20s)
This has used exactly 2g, 76s, 10c at level 20, 26g, 1s, 10c at level 40, and 51g, 21s and 10c at level 58/60. You can then decide at 60 whether you are going to push for an ultra fast epic mount, or if you are going to buy up some higher level skills and do dungeons first. You can reduce this by a further 2g 1s if you do not get any more ranks of Moonfire after level 10. If you plan to solo the entire time, this can be further reduced by removing Bear tanking abilities, Innervate, Rebirth and Mark of the Wild. If you do skip instances or to only DPS them, then you will probably suffer during the leveling process with a lack of decent blues.
Feral Faerie Fire and Feral Charge are free, as they are spells given by talents. Talents & Gearing
The first ten level of playing your Druid will go relatively slowly. Wrath, Thorns, your Staff and Moonfire being your only DPS. At level 10 you shoot off to Darnassus/Thunder Bluff for a quick quest which will unlock your first form, the Bear tanking form. Horde can start tanking instances around level 12 with Ragefire Chasm, Alliance around level 16-18 with Deadmines, but by level 20 you will have enough points in Feral to Tank or DPS every instance without having to care about your gear set until you reach the end game dungeons.
At low levels of gearing, before you are fully kitted out, you'll be focused on replacing your grey and white items with whatever greens you can get. Even for DPS, the basic stat priority will be;
Stamina > Strength > Agility > Armour
This is for several main reasons;
While questing, you usually don't have a tank. The more pulls you can make before having to heal and the safer you are the faster you will level.
Nearly all feral abilities scale with our basic white damage as we level, meaning we can prioritise survivability while having a negligible effect on our solo DPS.
We can't reach high levels of crit at low levels and we don't have Blood Frenzy.
The thing to also remember about Bear Form is that it increases our armour contribution from items by 180%, which puts us on an almost even footing with Warrior in low level instancing. We have significantly higher threat, we're relatively easier to heal and keep alive (block is minimal at low level for a Warrior and we have bigger health pools) and we don't have to worry about an item having +Int on it, as long as it is around our level (for the Armour) and has Stamina on it, it is usable. For example;
Compare the Chausses of Westfall and the Tunic of Westfall, the two 'tanky' rewards from the first Dungeon Quest chain for Alliance.
5 stam on each, 11 strength vs 11 agility, 173 armour vs 92 armour. We look worse off, but taking the 180% modifier into account the Tunic actually provides us with 165.6 armour, ~0.55% dodge (~20 agility is 1% dodge) and an extra 22 armour from the agility, giving us a total of 187.6 armour.
From a very simple EH standpoint, we can calculate roughly what each class gets. We have to use very simplified numbers to illustrate the effect (since it is impossible to calculate what the armour % reduction will be for the total char from one, one off piece) by adding the hp and armour and adding the 10% damage reduction from a warrior stance to give us;
(50 + 173)*1.10 = 245 "points" for the Warrior.
50 + 187.6 = 237.6 "points" for the Druid.
The classes are nearly even on pure damage reduction, and while the Warrior will gain a negligible amount of extra block from the strength, we are actually better off at low levels with our scaling due to the dodge. If we can get an excellent low level drop such as the Blackened Defias Armour, we actually outstrip warriors significantly, since they don't really have a corresponding low level blue chest drop.
110 + (92 * 1.8 + 6) = 281.6 "points" for the Druid with the Defias Armour.
Druid leveling drops by instance.
For the following guide;
A neutral quest can be picked up from the same quest giver by either faction. A faction quest can be picked up from either faction, but has their own independant quest giver. If a quest is listed as Alliance/Horde Quest, it means only that faction can get that quest. Ragefire Chasm (12-18 - Orgrimmar)
Dredgemire Leggings - Horde Quest - The Power to Destroy Savannah Bracers - Horde Quest - Searching for the Lost Satchel Hammer of Orgrimmar - Horde Quest - Hidden Enemies Subterranean Cape - Drop - Taragaman the Hungerer Deadmines (15-22 - Westfall)
Dusty Mining Gloves - Alliance Quest - Collecting Memories Tunic of Westfall - Alliance Quest - The Defias Brotherhood Miner's Cape - Drop - Miner Johnson Smelting Pants - Drop - Gilnid Blackened Defias Belt - Drop - Captain Greenskin Smite's Mighty Hammer - Drop - Mr. Smite Cookie's Stirring Rod - Drop - Cookie Cape of the Brotherhood - Drop - Edwin VanCleef Blackened Defias Armour - Drop - Edwin VanCleef Blackened Defias Boots - Drop - Trash Blackened Defias Gloves - Drop - Trash Blackened Defias Leggings - Drop - Trash Wailing Caverns (17-24 - Barrens)
Slick Deviate Leggings - Neutral Quest - Deviate Hides Deviate Scale Belt (crafted) - Neutral Quest - Deviate Eradication Talbar Mantle - Neutral Quest - The Glowing Shard Leggings of the Fang - Drop - Lord Cobrahn Belt of the Fang - Drop - Lady Anacondra Armour of the Fang - Drop - Lord Pythas Footpads of the Fang - Drop - Lord Serpentis Gloves of the Fang - Drop - Trash Glowing Lizardscale Cloak - Drop - Skum Shadowfang Keep (22-30 - Silverpine Forest)
Grizzled Boots - Horde Quest - The Book of Ur Seal of Sylvanas - Horde Quest - Arugal Must Die Silverlaine's Family Seal - Drop - Baron Silverlaine Odo's Ley Staff - Drop - Odo the Blindwatcher Fenrus' Hide - Drop - Fenrus the Devourer Black Wolf Bracers - Drop - Fenrus the Devourer Wolfmaster Cape - Drop - Wolf Master Nandos Gloomshroud Armour - Drop - Trash Face Smasher - Drop - Trash Blackfathom Deeps (24-32 - Ashenvale)
Band of the Fist - Horde Quest - Allegiance to the Old Gods Deftkin Belt - Horde Quest - Je'neu of the Earthen Ring (Befouled Water Globe) Naga Battle Gloves - Drop - Lady Sarevess Glowing Thresher Cape - Drop - Old Serra'kis Bands of Serra'kis - Drop - Old Serra'kis Moss Cinch - Drop - Aku'mai Ring of Precision - Drop - Trash Mobs Stockades (24-32 - Stormwind City)
Ambassador's Boots - Alliance Quest - Crime and Punishment Belt of Vindication or Headbasher - Alliance Quest - The Fury Runs Deep Razorfen Kraul (29-38 - Barrens)
Mourning Shawl or Lancer Boots - Alliance Quest - Mortality Wanes Monkey Ring or Tiger Band - Neutral Quest - Willix the Importer Ferine Leggings - Drop - Agathelos the Raging Slaghammer - Drop - Trash Wolfclaw Gloves - Drop - Trash Plains Ring - Drop - Trash Mantle of Thieves - Drop - Trash Gnomeregan (29-38 - Dun Morogh)
Mechanic's Pipehammer - Alliance Quest - Data Rescue Triprunner Dungarees - Faction Quest - The Grand Betrayal/Rig Wars Manual Crowd Pummeler - Drop - Crowd Pummeler 9-60 Oscillating Power Hammer - Drop - Trash Petrolspill Leggings - Drop -Trash Scarlet Monastery (34-45 - Tirisfal Glades)
Explorers' League Commendation - Alliance Quest - Mythology of the Titans Vorrel's Boots - Horde Quest - Vorrel's Revenge Dragon's Blood Necklace - Horde Quest - Into the Scarlet Monastery Loksey's Training Stick - Drop - Houndmaster Loksey Branded Leather Bracers - Drop - High Inquisiter Fairbanks Mograine's Might - Drop - Scarlet Commander Mograine Ironspine's Eye - Drop - Ironspine Ironspine's Fist - Drop - Ironspine Ghostshard Talisman - Drop - Azshir the Sleepless Ebon Vise - Drop - Fallen Champion Dreamslayer - Drop - Trash Fight Club - Drop - Trash Flintrock Shoulders - Drop - Trash Harbringer Boots - Drop - Trash Mark of Kern - Drop - Trash Warchief Kilt - Drop - Trash Watchman Pauldrons - Drop - Trash Razorfen Downs (37-46 - Barrens)
Dragonclaw Ring - Neutral Quest - Extinguishing the Idol Amberglow Talisman - Faction Quest - Bring the Light/End Silky Spider Cape - Drop - Tuten'kash Fleshhide Shoulders - Drop - Glutton Quillward Harness - Drop - Trash Uldaman (41-51 - Badlands)
Medal of Courage - Alliance Quest - The Lost Tablets of Will Prospector Gloves - Alliance Quest - Agmond's Fate Explorer's League Lodestar - Alliance Quest - The Hidden Chamber Talvash's/Jarkal's Enhancing Necklace - Faction Quest - Restoring the Necklace/Find the Gems and Power Source Ironshod Bludgeon - Drop - Ironaya Archaedic Stone - Drop - Archaedas The Rockpounder - Drop - Archaedas Adventurer's Pith Helmet - Drop - Trash Spirewind Fetter - Drop - Trash Stonevault Bonebreaker - Drop - Trash Unearthed Bands - Drop - Trash Zul'Farrak (44-54 - Tanaris)
Masons Fraternity Ring - Neutral Quest - Divino-matic Rod Lifeblood Amulet - Drop - Antu'sul Jinxed Hoodoo Skin - Drop - Shadowpriest Sezz'ziz Embrace of the Lycan - Drop - Chief Ukorz Sandscalp Sandstalker Ankleguards - Drop - Zerillis Blackmetal Cape - Drop - Trash Maruadon (46-55 - Desolace)
Zealous Shadowshard Pendant - Faction Quest - Shadowshard Fragments Sagebrush Girdle - Faction Quest - Vyletongue Corruption Sprightring Helm - Neutral Quest - Twisted Evils Mark of the Chosen - Neutral Quest - The Pariah's Instructions Heart of Noxxion - Drop - Noxxion Phytoskin Spaulders - Drop - Razorlash Fungus Shroud Armour - Drop - Meshlok the Harvester Grovekeeper's Drape - Drop - Celebras the Cursed Albino Crocscale Boots - Drop - Rotgrip Blackstone Ring - Drop - Princess Theradras The Sunken Temple (50-60 - Swamp of Sorrows)
Guardian Talisman - Faction Quest - Into the Temple of Atal'HakkaThe Temple of Atal'Hakkar Atal'ai Spaulders of the Bear - Drop - Troll Minibosses Nightfall Drape - Drop - Dragons Drakeclaw Band - Drop - Dragons BlackRock Depths (52-60 - Blackrock Mountain)
Penance Spaulders - Neutral Quest - Ribbly Screwspigot Nagmara's Whipping Belt - Neutral Quest - The Love Potion Swiftstrike Cudgel - Faction Quest - Hurley Blackbreath/Lost Thunderbrew Recipe Nightfall Gloves - Faction Quest - Incendius!/Disharmony of Fire Windshear Leggings - Alliance Quest - Marshall Windsor Wyrmhide Spaulders - Neutral Quest - A Tase of Flame Magni's Will - Alliance Quest - The Fate of the Kingdom Conqueror's Medallion - Horde Quest - Operation: Death to Angerforge Thrall's Resolve - Horde Quest - The Royal Rescue Idol of Ferocity - Drop - Roccor Smoking Heart of the Mountain (crafted) - Drop - Roccor Blackveil Cape - Drop - High Interrogator Gerstahn Shadefiend Boots - Drop - Ring of Law Girdle of Bestial Fury - Drop - Ring of Law Dark Warder's Pauldrons - Drop - Warder Stilgiss Magma Forged Band - Drop - The Secret Safe Cinderhide Armsplints - Drop - Lord Incendius Rubidium Hammer - Drop - Bael'gar Warstrife Leggings - Drop - General Angerforge Force of Will - Drop - General Angerforge Naglering - Drop - Golem Lord Argelmach Coal Miner Boots - Drop - Hurley Blackbreath Ghostshroud - Drop - Summoner's Tomb Magmus Stone - Drop - Magmus The Emperor's New Cape - Drop - Emperor Thaurissan Wristguards of Renown - Drop - Emperor Thaurissan Swiftwalker Boots - Drop - Princess Moira Bronzebeard
These are all the best drops to look out for while leveling to 60. Scholomance, Stratholme, LoweUpper Blackrock Spire and Dire Maul are all end game instances you will struggle to find a group for without being level 60, so I will not add them to the list.
There are 3 main builds and one variant build that we can use in PvE content. They are;
Pure Hybrid. Feral DPS. Feral Tank. Feral/Resto Hybrid. The 'Pure Hybrid' 11/35/5
- Not quite as able to powershift due to lacking Natural Shapeshifter, but still able to tank every instance, every raid, and DPS effectively. Feral Pure DPS 14/32/5
- Based around Powershifting, this mean you dps to 0 energy, shift to caster, shift back to cat for the 40 bonus energy, and then continue dpsing. It has high mana requirements, and is not an easy spec to play. Feral Pure Tank 13/33/5
- Less able to solo in Cat, but high survivability, threat and a better Thorns makes tanking a breeze. Feral/Resto Hybrid 0/30/20 +1
- This is the true 'variant' build, able to dps, tank or heal depending on what your group needs and if you have the bag space to carry around 2 sets of gear. You wont be effective as a pure specced tank/healedps druid, but you will be able to do all non raid activities without respeccing, it's an effective solo spec and cheap to run, so you could use it effectively on an alt. The bonus point goes either in Leader of the Pack or Nature's Swiftness, depending on what you do most often.
You can choose any of the consumables from the below list, keeping in mind that they do not all stack with each other;
Elixir of the Mongoose & Elixir of Giants if not flasking. Mageblood Potion. Demonic/Dark Rune. Major Mana Potion. Winterfall Firewater. Juju Power. Juju Might > Elixir of the Giants. R.O.I.D.S. Ground Scorpok Assay. Elemental Sharpening Stone. Flask of Distilled Wisdom for powershifting, Flask of Titans for tanking.
Thanks for reading! Time for my 5th 60 Druid...