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  1. #1
    Community Member Helexax's Avatar
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    Talking Returning player needs druid advice

    I had played the game since September of 07, and stopped just before the Underdark expansion. Looking to come back and relive the good ol' days with a twist ( druid ) and am looking for any and all advice on how to be effective as a druid. I don't have a specific build or role in mind, and will decide on that based on what i find on the forums here. My search-foo is incredibly weak, and the forum appears to have changed dramatically, so here i am, asking for help!

  2. #2
    Community Member susiedupfer's Avatar
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    If you want a decent caster druid build, I would go here: https://www.ddo.com/forums/showthrea...survivability)

    There are other builds out there, but this is a good place to start. That thread includes lots and lots of good info, both from Markeyx and others.
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    Community Member Sokól's Avatar
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    and if you want to splash a little and go melee I can advice you but would need to know past lives if any, race and some other pref.

    Then there are some wolf builds never liked playing 1 myself but could direct you to some threads.
    Last edited by Sokól; 06-10-2013 at 06:43 AM.
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  4. #4
    Community Member Helexax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sokól View Post
    and if you want to splash a little and go melee I can advice you but would need to know past lives if any, race and some other pref.

    Then there are some wolf builds never liked playing 1 myself but could direct you to some threads.
    This character would have no past lives, race i'll decide when i choose a playstyle.

    Any and all advice is appreciated

  5. #5
    Build Constructionist unbongwah's Avatar
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    I like versatile classes; so druids have become one of my favorites, which surprises me, because I never cared for them in PnP or other CRPGs like NWN. But DDO druids can heal, DPS, CC - a little bit of everything. But they can't do it all at once (or at least not equally well), which involves making some important build decisions early on.


    • Might or Magic? As with clerics & FvS, do you want to be melee-focused or caster-focused (STR or WIS)? [Or maybe ranged-focused, like a drunkcher.] If the former, you need to decide if you're going unarmed, TWF, THF, S&B, or shapeshifted (phew!), which will determine what melee feat(s) you need, too.
    • Pure or multiclassing? Staying pure gets you one of the capstones, of course. Hierophant is okay for a caster druid: +2 WIS and +1 DC Conj & Trans. Natural Adept is pretty good if you're a wolf / bear build: extra sneak atks / PRR (depending on form), but more importantly reduces the spell cooldown penalty (2.5x -> 1.5x). OTOH, MCing helps you address some of the shortcomings of druids, like the lack of feats, Evasion, adding class skills, low Reflex saves, etc.


    I've experimented with various druid builds, though I've only gotten one to lvl 20; pure human druid, supposed to be a dire bear tank expect bear-form still kinda sucks. I think WIS-based wolf builds are my favorite: good melee DPS (esp. if HE for extra sneak atk dmg) and good caster DPS, solid DCs, Essence of Shrike provides plenty of free SPs, esp. after taking IC:Blunt. The tough part is pure or MCed: that capstone is invaluable if you like spamming your spells, but this is a very feat-starved build; and I really miss Evasion.

  6. #6
    Community Member Helexax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unbongwah View Post
    I like versatile classes; so druids have become one of my favorites, which surprises me, because I never cared for them in PnP or other CRPGs like NWN. But DDO druids can heal, DPS, CC - a little bit of everything. But they can't do it all at once (or at least not equally well), which involves making some important build decisions early on.


    • Might or Magic? As with clerics & FvS, do you want to be melee-focused or caster-focused (STR or WIS)? [Or maybe ranged-focused, like a drunkcher.] If the former, you need to decide if you're going unarmed, TWF, THF, S&B, or shapeshifted (phew!), which will determine what melee feat(s) you need, too.
    • Pure or multiclassing? Staying pure gets you one of the capstones, of course. Hierophant is okay for a caster druid: +2 WIS and +1 DC Conj & Trans. Natural Adept is pretty good if you're a wolf / bear build: extra sneak atks / PRR (depending on form), but more importantly reduces the spell cooldown penalty (2.5x -> 1.5x). OTOH, MCing helps you address some of the shortcomings of druids, like the lack of feats, Evasion, adding class skills, low Reflex saves, etc.


    I've experimented with various druid builds, though I've only gotten one to lvl 20; pure human druid, supposed to be a dire bear tank expect bear-form still kinda sucks. I think WIS-based wolf builds are my favorite: good melee DPS (esp. if HE for extra sneak atk dmg) and good caster DPS, solid DCs, Essence of Shrike provides plenty of free SPs, esp. after taking IC:Blunt. The tough part is pure or MCed: that capstone is invaluable if you like spamming your spells, but this is a very feat-starved build; and I really miss Evasion.
    Thanks for the input, as i said it's been a long time since i been on, and theres a ton of changes to get used to, like the new AC and spell power systems. So im here googling every term i dont know, lol. Any other advice is also appreciated

  7. #7
    Community Member Helexax's Avatar
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    Atm i am leaning towards a caster dps/healer hybrid, but that's only because of the information i've gone through to this point, anyone got anything related to melee dps / tanking?

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    Community Member Sokól's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helexax View Post
    Atm i am leaning towards a caster dps/healer hybrid, but that's only because of the information i've gone through to this point, anyone got anything related to melee dps / tanking?
    Here is my build can not update the first post because of forum changes but the toon is preforming very well in all EE content, even with a little debuffing earthquake is landing in EE.

    https://www.ddo.com/forums/showthrea...11609-The-Drug

    I like the Beast also a bit more melee focused
    https://www.ddo.com/forums/showthrea...g-an-xmen-name

    These builds are using manyshot for burst dps in fury or LD.

    As you can read in the first thread I leveled up as a TWF first with wraps then khopeshes at level 12, but at level 20+ THF and manyshot.
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  9. #9
    Community Member Helexax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sokól View Post
    Here is my build can not update the first post because of forum changes but the toon is preforming very well in all EE content, even with a little debuffing earthquake is landing in EE.

    https://www.ddo.com/forums/showthrea...11609-The-Drug

    I like the Beast also a bit more melee focused
    https://www.ddo.com/forums/showthrea...g-an-xmen-name

    These builds are using manyshot for burst dps in fury or LD.

    As you can read in the first thread I leveled up as a TWF first with wraps then khopeshes at level 12, but at level 20+ THF and manyshot.
    Your going to have to explain how manyshot works with melee.. Druid seems a taad more complicated than the rest of the classes, and last i played manyshot only worked with bows.... infact a nice explanation of all those little things that make druid different would be excellent ( manyshot with melee... )

    Thanks for the links, reading now

  10. #10
    Build Constructionist unbongwah's Avatar
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    You're right, Manyshot is only for bows. Fury of the Wild (specifically Unbridled Fury) + Manyshot = "Furyshot" which is a very nice source of burst DPS if you can find a way to squeeze MS+Bow STR into your build. See also: Juggernaut.

  11. #11
    Community Member Helexax's Avatar
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    I have decided, to munch a +4 tome on my sorc and TR into a caster based druid. This lets me save on getting tomes for a new character, keep my caster items ( I ASSUME they will still be useful ) and get sorc past life feats, which off hand seem useful for a druid. The 2 build points are nice too =P

    I am now looking for any and all druid casting advice, everything, what spells im expected to bring, what spells are useful for what, items to look out for and such. In the event of no useful advice i will end up following the Markeyx build rather closely.

  12. #12
    Community Member susiedupfer's Avatar
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    You won't be sorry. If you already like casting, that is a lovely build.

    A few quick pointers:

    Casting in animal form is not great. Ele form helps casting. At low levels, to compensate for sucky spells, wolf form is a happy thing.

    Unless you plan on being a primary healer, avoid the empower healing feat. You can keep yourself alive without it. You can always swap a feat later if you find you need to be a raid healer or somesuch.

    Take all the SP feats and enhancements you can get. You are only viable while your blue bar lasts. This means I take both mental toughness feats and the sorc active PL feat. I take the sorc PL feat as soon as possible to get that lovely little clickie.

    Take all the wisdom you can. DC's and SP. Need I say more?

    Toughness and HP matters. Dying lots is not a good thing. I take all but the top tier of one of the toughness enhancement lines. This keeps me viable in EE content.

    After low levels, you will not find me in the middle of the battle if I am in a party. When I start casting full time, I start backing out of melee.

    Get pots. Remove <everything>, lesser restoration, poison neutralization, CSW. Why use SP to fix issues that can be taken care of that way? I buy everything I can in marketplace so I can share a few and a lesson to those who think I am supposed to fix their <everything>. Eventually we will educate the masses.

    Get scrolls for Heal, etc. Again, why waste SP for those not-the-middle-of-the-battle heals?
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  13. #13
    Build Constructionist unbongwah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by susiedupfer View Post
    Casting in animal form is not great. Ele form helps casting. At low levels, to compensate for sucky spells, wolf form is a happy thing.
    I built a Season's Herald for farming challenges; I like using wolf form when I'm not casting for the decent-ish DPS with minimal investment, free SPs from Shrike, and Takedown.
    Unless you plan on being a primary healer, avoid the empower healing feat. You can keep yourself alive without it. You can always swap a feat later if you find you need to be a raid healer or somesuch.
    I disagree: between Regen, Mass Regen, and Rejuvenation Cocoon, Emp Heal is well worth taking on a caster druid, IMHO. Plus druids don't get Wand & Scroll Mastery, so you're more dependent on your healing spells than other casters.

    One other suggestion: boost your Reflex saves! They are the Achilles heel of druids, IMHO. I would strongly consider prepping one of the Insanity armors (either Chaosrobe or Parasitic Breastplate) with +10 Reflex before TRing just to have it ready when you hit lvl 14. Grab a Sustaining Symbiont while you're at it; negates the Madness penalty from the armor, GFL, +10% exceptional fort, and +1 exceptional CON are all nice survivability bonuses.

  14. #14
    Community Member Helexax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unbongwah View Post

    One other suggestion: boost your Reflex saves! They are the Achilles heel of druids, IMHO. I would strongly consider prepping one of the Insanity armors (either Chaosrobe or Parasitic Breastplate) with +10 Reflex before TRing just to have it ready when you hit lvl 14. Grab a Sustaining Symbiont while you're at it; negates the Madness penalty from the armor, GFL, +10% exceptional fort, and +1 exceptional CON are all nice survivability bonuses.
    I did find it odd that druids didn't get evasion...lol.

    Speaking of Parasitic Breastplate and Sustaining Symbiont.. i already have such things =D

    As well as Minos, Torque, some random caster epics...lol.

  15. #15
    Build Constructionist unbongwah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helexax View Post
    I did find it odd that druids didn't get evasion...lol.
    Holdover from PnP: I don't believe any of the caster classes get Evasion. You may want to consider a Drunk caster (i.e., druid 18 / monk 2): Evasion + 2 extra feats (Toughness & something else) really help out if you can get your Reflex saves high enough; using Ocean Stance 1 can partially offset the DC loss from losing the capstone. OTOH, you do lose about 200 SPs from splashing, so it's kind of a tradeoff; and if you plan to run in Primal Avatar, you can get Evasion for free on a pure druid.
    Last edited by unbongwah; 06-12-2013 at 02:40 PM.

  16. #16
    Community Member Helexax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unbongwah View Post
    Holdover from PnP: I don't believe any of the caster classes get Evasion. You may want to consider a Drunk caster (i.e., druid 18 / monk 2): Evasion + 2 extra feats (Toughness & something else) really help out if you can get your Reflex saves high enough; using Ocean Stance 1 can partially offset the DC loss from losing the capstone. OTOH, you do lose about 200 SPs from splashing, so it's kind of a tradeoff; and if you plan to run in Primal Avatar, you can get Evasion for free on a pure druid.
    I know absolutely nothing about the whole epic destiny thing, have yet to even purchase the underdark =P

    I will probably shy away from MCing, I have always preferred to play pure characters.

    And i knew that no caster gets evasion, but druids have always seemed odd, with the nature theme, the animal reflexes, living in the wild idea behind them.

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    maybe its just me but the only character ive played that didnt have Str was a Sorc. My Wizards, Divine Casters, and now my Druid have had a 12 - 14 Str. The Wolf Form is great (Im still lvl 12 though) and it has a lot of free DPS boosters. Meleeing with the Druid is quite fun and i couldn't imagine being just a pure caster, especially considering he doesn't have all that mana. The Markey build starts with 8 Str, reaches high AC, but i guess it depends on your playstyle. I totally forgo AC because of the gear investment required and becoz I use a Torc to regenerate SP.

    In the lower levels, the Druid doesn't have much offensive or AOE spells so wolf form is usually the best option. The only times I've stopped meleeing were with bosses where I wanted to kill them as fast as possible due to their high damage, but for everything else, I couldnt go without meleeing. The wolf also gets a nice Trip that recharges pretty quickly so you'd be doing more mana efficient CC than if you were in Human form. The slow cooldown from Wolfform isn't that bad for me. I wish it were faster for heals but it can get the job done. I switch back to human in emergencies.

    I am maxing out Wisdom on this build and planning to choose all caster feats, but still doing good melee dps just with the 14 Str investment.
    Last edited by supott; 06-12-2013 at 04:44 PM.

  18. #18
    Community Member Helexax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by supott View Post
    maybe its just me but the only character ive played that didnt have Str was a Sorc. My Wizards, Divine Casters, and now my Druid have had a 12 - 14 Str. The Wolf Form is great (Im still lvl 12 though) and it has a lot of free DPS boosters. Meleeing with the Druid is quite fun and i couldn't imagine being just a pure caster, especially considering he doesn't have all that mana. The Markey build starts with 8 Str, reaches high AC, but i guess it depends on your playstyle. I totally forgo AC because of the gear investment required and becoz I use a Torc to regenerate SP.

    In the lower levels, the Druid doesn't have much offensive or AOE spells so wolf form is usually the best option. The only times I've stopped meleeing were with bosses where I wanted to kill them as fast as possible due to their high damage, but for everything else, I couldnt go without meleeing. The wolf also gets a nice Trip that recharges pretty quickly so you'd be doing more mana efficient CC than if you were in Human form. The slow cooldown from Wolfform isn't that bad for me. I wish it were faster for heals but it can get the job done. I switch back to human in emergencies.

    I am maxing out Wisdom on this build and planning to choose all caster feats, but still doing good melee dps just with the 14 Str investment.

    I tend to build for late game, so i may go as high as 10 str, but probably no more. Now i also have access to my crafted "Battle Skill" goggles that give me + to hit, thanks for the input =D

    Oh, i, also, dont care much for AC and usually wind up wearing robes of some sort... hehe

  19. #19
    Build Constructionist unbongwah's Avatar
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    For a caster druid, I'd say your Reflex saves are more important than your melee DPS in the long run; hence why Markeyx & others start DEX 14 (or higher). [I'm half-tempted to suggest going dwarf just for +5 to saves from Dwarven Spell Defense.] You can use Flame Blades for those rare occasions you need to melee, since that uses WIS for to-hit & dmg; there's also Forgotten Light and Scepter of Healing, but druids don't get hvy mace prof.

  20. #20
    Community Member Helexax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unbongwah View Post
    For a caster druid, I'd say your Reflex saves are more important than your melee DPS in the long run; hence why Markeyx & others start DEX 14 (or higher). [I'm half-tempted to suggest going dwarf just for +5 to saves from Dwarven Spell Defense.] You can use Flame Blades for those rare occasions you need to melee, since that uses WIS for to-hit & dmg; there's also Forgotten Light and Scepter of Healing, but druids don't get hvy mace prof.
    I agree, im a dwarf guy anyways so ill consider it, the human feat + skills are pretty big though. Flame Blades, Forgotten Light, Scepter of Healing are all new to me.. ill have to wiki those


    I see Flame Blades are a spell, they look fun =)

    I have a metric ton of invasion tokens, so scepter of healing is no issue to get. I dont plan to splash monk atm so weapon proff is no big deal to me either. If i need to melee theres Flame Blades =P
    Last edited by Helexax; 06-13-2013 at 01:41 PM.

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