"Commanding the forces of nature, he summons wild beasts and raging storms to his side."
A master of summoning, the druid can also cause massive spell damage and shape-shift into a powerful melee fighter. How massive and how powerful are questions left to each druid player, who must decide which of the druid's three skill disciplines to learn deeply. While at first somewhat daunting in their complexity, his skills, once mastered, make for an ideal single-player character.
- Strength: 15
- Dexterity: 20
- Vitality: 25
- Energy: 20
The three disciplines that a druid can master each require a particular attribute distribution. If a druid player takes the elemental route, emphasizing spells that cause fire and ice damage, he will require a larger mana supply than one who focuses on shape-shifting or summoning. An elemental druid will need to sink more stat points into energy than one who uses summoned creatures, or a transformed body, to fight for him.
A shape-shifter will most often be found in were form, which, especially for werebear users, amplifies the druid's life supply. Still, shape-shifters will most often be found in melee combat, biting and clawing at enemies, and this takes its toll on vitality. A shape-shifter would be wise to put a stat point or two into vitality as often as he levels up. Melee fighters should also attend to their strength statistic as well.
Summoners create minions to do the dirty work for them and can either shape-shift to join in the fray or hang back and support the minions with elemental spells. Depending on a summoner's preferences, either energy or vitality should be augmented at each level, as described above.
- Weapon: Club
- Shield: Buckler
These are some of the most effective and most popular druid builds. Every build has a strength and a weakness. Decide for yourself which one you want to be.
There are two types of Shape Shifting Druids: Werewolf and Werebear. The bear has more health, more defense, and has the ability to stun its enemy, while the wolf can attack much faster, is more accurate, and can do more damage.
- 20 Werewolf
- 20 Lycanthropy
- 20 Fury
- 1-2 Feral Rage
- 1-2 Rabies
- 20 Oak Sage/ Heart of Wolverine
The rest of the points go to summoning skills and if the Druid chooses to, cyclone armor. No points into any Elemental skills other than cyclone armor.
A powerful weapon-damage over time should be your first priority before looking for defensive sources. This druid will use feral rage three times first, so that he gets the life leech and speed bonuses, then attack with Fury. After twenty seconds, Feral Rage will run out so he should use it again. The Grizzly will be a great distraction to his enemies, and the Oak Sage can give him more life, or the Heart of Wolverine will make him more accurate and let him do more damage.
PVM: You can attack large groups of monsters since your fury can hit five targets at the same time. However, you must be mindful of your health since you don't have as much health as the Wearbear does. At one-on-one, if it is a melee monster, then it is toast because your life leech from Feral Rage will make sure that you will have full health the entire time. If it is ranged, you will have a harder time, but due to the fact the you get fast run/walk from Feral Rage, you should be able to charge it and kill it. Against groups, you should let your Grizzly charge it and then pick off the enemy. You can survive getting surrounded but you still have a good chance of dying.
PVP: You should charge up to the enemy and hit them with Fury. They will not last long since Fury has INSANE amounts of speed and damage. However, you will not last long against ranged attackers, especially if it is a Necromancer and he Iron Maidens you and traps you in a Bone Prison. Then, if you hit the Bone Prison, you will kill yourself and if you don't hit it, the Necromancer would whoop your butt.
- 20 Werebear
- 20 Lycanthropy
- 20 Maul
- 1-2 Shockwave
- 20 Oak Sage/ Heart of Wolverine
The rest of the points go to summoning skills and if the Druid chooses to, Cyclone Armor. No points into any Elemental skills other than Cyclone Armor.
An alternative to Maul and the higher use of points in Lycanthropy, Oaksage etc; would be to effectively distribute points between fire spells, aiding the use of fire claw, and passive upgrades in defensive abilities (such as Lycanthropy and Oaksage). Weapon damage is of little significance in this spec until late game content containing fire-immune monsters. Weapon speed should be your first priority (along with a source for renewable mana such as 1%-2% manasteal).
This druid will use Maul to attack his enemies. If there are too many enemies, then he will use Shockwave to stun them and then use pick them off one by one. The Grizzly will be a great distraction to his enemies, and the Oak Sage can give him more life, or the Heart of Wolverine will make him more accurate and let him do more damage.
PVM: In one-on-one against a melee attacker, you can just stun the monster and you will not even get hit. It cannot get much easier. If it is ranged, go within range of your Shockwave and stun it. Then it will not be able to attack and once again, it is a piece of cake. Against large groups, you should Shockwave them and then use your Grizzly as distraction. Then use Maul and pick them off one by one.
PVP: You should charge up to the enemy and hit them with Shockwave. They will be perpetually stunned and you will win. However, again if a Necromancer gets you inside a Bone Prison and uses Iron Maidon, you are toast. This build is better than the Werewolf against most players since Werebears can stun but Werewolves still do more damage. A better example (should you avoid this trick with a quick switch and teleport) would be to act defensively, *kiting the other player until a space of advantage can be taken and your sufficient run speed allows your to strike from the right angle (or circumstance) to avoid a counter.
There are two types of Elemental Druids: Fire and Windy. Fire druids use Fissure, which makes random and very damaging holes into the ground around a place specified by the caster. Armageddon will pound all the enemies surrounding him. Windy druids use highly damaging Tornados that can penetrate and go in a straight line in front of the Druid. All monsters within range of the Hurricane will feel its wrath.
- 20 in Fissure
- 20 in Volcano
- 20 in Armageddon
- 1 or 20 in Molten boulder
- 1 or 20 in Firestorm
Either way Molten Boulder give volcano bonus=Physical or Firestorm to buff Fissure up to 7.5k with complete gear. Put all extra points onto cyclone armor or summoning skills. No points into any shapeshifting skills.
These druids put Armageddon on and use fissure as their main attack. Cyclone armor will help them stay alive while their summons will distract the enemy. Solor creeper or Carrion Vine is used depending on whether the player wants a vine to suck mana or life. A Oak Sage is used for extra life and the grizzly will make a fine tank.
PVM: When you get out of town, cast Armageddon. Recast it once it's gone. Since Fissure makes Armegeddon go for a few minutes, this shouldn't happen too often. When you see some enemies, hit them with fissure. Against large groups of clustered enemies you are king, but if they come from all sides you will have to hope that your Armageddon hits them and burn them to crisp.
PVP: You should get within range to cast Armageddon and then when you can, Fissure on the enemy. After that just keep on attacking and use your Cyclone Armor to absorb the attacks. If you're against a melee fighter, you should be constantly running away and putting fissures in the path of your enemies. If the Melee person has Teleport, no big deal. If u have a Storm Shield, use it. It will benefit you a lot if you go max block with eld in it. Just fissure beneath you or at them till they come towards you.
In addition to PVP
If they put absorb on you are mostly screwed unless u have some pretty nice -res gear and damage. I suggest 30-30 faceted weapon, 20-20 armor /w life if possible, and 20-20 Shield. I usually have no use for teleport unless your more of a balance type and want life from oak, bo, and summons. I'm a master of w/s and evading better while running
- 20 on Cyclone Armor
- 20 on Twister
- 20 on Tornado
- 20 on Hurricane
- 1 on Arctic Blast
All extra points are on oak sage. No points into any shapeshifting skills.
These druids put Hurricane on and use tornado to attack the monsters not killed by Hurricane. Cyclone armor will help the druid stay alive while at the same time it will synergize Hurricane. Their summons will also distract the enemy. Solor creeper or Carrion Vine is used depending on whether the player wants a vine to suck mana or life. A Oak Sage is used for extra life and the grizzly will make a fine tank.
PVM: When you get out of town, cast Hurricane. Recast it once it's gone. Since Cyclone Armor makes Hurricane go for a few minutes, this shouldn't happen too often. When you see some enemies, charge them. Due to the fact that tornados are VERY slow, you should only use it in close range. The hurricane will badly damage if not kill most of the enemies, and tornado will finish them off. Use this strategy regardless of how many enemies you are facing and how many ways they're coming from because you will have time to kill them all due to the fact that they will be slowed down by your hurricane.
PVP: Due to the fact that most Duelers have something so that they can't get frozen, your Hurricane will not be slowing them down. You will have to make sure your Hurricane is within range to hit them because they can EASILY dodge your slow tornados. However, due to the fact that you have maxed cyclone armor, you will be able to tank all the people who are using elemental skills.
These Druids summon a Grizzly to do all the hard work of killing his enemies, while helping it out by stunning the monsters using Shockwave and Maul.
- 20 on Spirit Wolf
- 20 on Dire Wolf
- 20 on Grizzly
- 20 on Heart of Wolverine/ Oak Sage
- 1 on Carrion Vine
- 1 on Poison Creeper
- 1 on Raven
- 7 on Wearbear
- 7 on Lycanthropy
- 6 on Maul
- 6 on Shockwave
All extra points are on summoning skills.
PVM: When you are in town, summon all the things you need to summon and transform. When you meet enemies in small groups, stun them with maul and help your bear kill them all. When you face large groups, hit them with Shockwave instead and pick them off one by one and make sure that they stay stunned so you can kill them without getting hit. PVP: You should not do PVP with this build.
Choosing Your Build
If you've always preferred to attack from afar, then you should become an elemental druid. If you want to be an elemental druid and you wish to hit huge groups of enemies that are tightly compacted, you should be a fire druid. If you want to hit huge groups of enemies that are spread apart, then you should be a windy druid. If you've always preferred to hack and slash, then you should be a Shapeshifting Druid. If you like hitting lots of things very fast, very accurately, and do a lot of damage, then you should be a Werewolf. If you prefer to make yourself into a tank, then choose the Wearbear.
If you've always wanted some servants to do all the work for you, then you should be a summoning druid.
Creating a Master Druid
Each of the druid's three skill disciplines tempts every player, yet to succeed in the higher skill levels (nightmare and hell), a druid must focus on one of the three, while using a second discipline to supplement his proficiency. Druids can be fashioned into characters that resemble quite a few of the other character classes--an elemental druid, for example, may elect to stand aside from large battles and cast devastating spells like a sorceress, while a shape-shifting druid will often be found ripping enemies apart like a barbarian.
Any combination of primary and secondary discipline from among the three choices--elemental, shape-shifting, and summoning--may be used successfully. You could play through the game nine times, just using the druid class, to try them all. A few moments of thought before applying skill points will lead you to the combination you are likely to prefer most.
A player who prefers to play a calmer sort of game, for example, can play a summoner who moonlights as an elemental spell caster. This player would create a wolf or grizzly, or would play with a group containing barbarians, paladins, or assassins, and would back the melee fighters up by releasing fire and ice spells onto the opponent. A version that uses Shapeshifting instead of Elemental skills will use the Wearbear and Shockwave to stun the monsters while his minions finish them off.
A player who prefers to hack and slash, on the other hand, can choose to become proficient at shape-shifting, transforming himself into a werewolf or werebear, and learning a few summoning skills to boost the party's attack rating, or suck mana and life out of the fresh corpses. Keep in mind that your equipped weapon stats are still in effect in both werewolf and werebear form. For example, a slow attack weapon reaps the rewards from the faster attack speed of the werewolf. If you want to do damage fast and hit more, then choose the Wearwolf and use Fury, and you will be able to hit five times and have a huge attack rating bonus. If you prefer to have more life and make each hit stun the monster, you should choose the Wearbear and use Maul and Shockwave. Most shape-shifters use summoning skills to help them out.
Elemental druids are not preferred, but they are more than competent. The two main types are Windy and Fire. Windy druids use Hurricane and Tornado to do damage fast while using cyclone armor to make sure they stay alive. Fire druids will use fissure to do mass damage and use cyclone armor to stay alive. ALl Elemental druids use some summoning aid.
Joining a regular group of other players will affect the druid's decisions, as a group without melee fighters will likely benefit most from a summoner or shape-shifter, while a group without spellcasting power will be grateful for the help of an elemental druid. A player who takes on Diablo alone is free to play with any style, as the druid is a well-balanced character for solo play.
A druid, especially one who specializes in elemental spells, must be careful to manage his mana supply. Each elemental spell (to varying degrees) can affect numerous enemies with one casting. A volcano, for example, not only damages creatures at the point of eruption, but rains down fire damage on enemies in a wide radius around it. A molten boulder likewise attacks as many enemies as it encounters as it rolls away from the druid to its intended target point.
A summoned raven, wolf, or bear, on the other hand, never causes damage to more than one creature at a time. These creatures, while certainly a boon to a druid who needs to distract some enemies while he casts spells or assists in the attack, cannot quickly dispatch a group of tough monsters. A shape-shifted druid mow down batches of the game's most difficult foes if he has fast attack speed and is using fury.
However, as tempting as it is, it is NOT RECOMMENDED to invest in all three skill trees extensively. This is because your druid will not be able to focus on one point and he will be doing pathetic damage elementally, with his melee, and with his minions.
Spells like volcano and armageddon, for example, make for good initial attacks; a shape-shift or hurricane helps to mop up the sidekicks; and finally, a shape-shifted melee skill like feral rage, maul, or fury works well against the enchanted boss. Summoned minions will of course do their own things during these fights.
The important point to note is that area-effect spells should be saved for large groups, while single-opponent attacks ought to be used against small groups or single enemies. This is especially true for fights against the game's most mighty creatures, many of which are resistant to magic attacks, although their minions are often less so.
Shape-Shifters will want to attack the enemy when they are in small groups, unless the druid is facing very weak monsters.
If you are playing as a druid for the first time, you should find that progressing through the first few acts of the game is easy enough that you should not have to spend all of your skill points as soon as you get them. Your advanced skills are worth saving points for! A good rule of thumb is this: Do not put more than one point into a skill until you feel that it needs to be upgraded for you to succeed. In other words, if you find yourself struggling to complete an act or a quest because your opponents are suddenly tougher than you can handle, you should start to spend the skill points you have stored up.
Saving up skill points not only lets you put more emphasis on the more powerful skills, but also gives you a chance to acclimate to the kind of fighter a druid is. When you get familiar with the skills you like using most, you can pump up those skills with assurance that you will get your money's worth.
Below are several distributions of skill points for a variety of druid characters, each of which has specialized in a different type of play and has completed the game. We assume that such a character is at level 35 and therefore has 39 spell points (one per level and four from quests) available. Note that some items increase skill levels, but such items are not assumed.
Remember that these examples are just that--examples! These are certainly not the only way you could choose to apply skill points, and they aren't necessarily the best way. Apply skill points to cater to your particular style of play. Use these examples as guidelines for specializing your character class in a particular skill.
Here is an example of how a druid skillful at Fire elemental spells may have spent his skill points:
Fire Storm -- 1 skill point
Molten Boulder -- 20 skill point
Fissure -- 20 skill point
Volcano -- 20 skill points
Armageddon -- 20 skill points
Arctic Blast -- 1 skill points
Cyclone Armor -- 20 skill points
Raven -- 1 skill point
Spirit Wolf -- 1 skill point
Dire Wolf -- 1 skill points
Grizzly -- 1 skill points
Poison Creeper -- 1 skill point
Carrion Vine -- 1 skill point
Solar Creeper -- 1 skill point
Oak Sage -- 1 skill points
To accomplish this distribution, you must have at times saved skill points to spend on higher-level skills. Because skills cannot be upgraded multiple times until you have gained new levels, this particular distribution leaves you with no remaining skill points.
This druid relies on his summoned creatures to engage the enemy, while he casts area attacks to devastate the crowded foes (Fissure and Armageddon). In the beginning of the game, the druid should have little problem beating back foes with his summoned creatures and personal attacks. In midgame, the druid will rely more heavily on Fissure and Armagedddon.
During the end game, the high-level Cyclone Armor will keep the Druid alive while the Summons are used as destraction while Fissure and Armageddon pound the enemy to pieces.
Shape Shifting Master
Here is an example of how a druid who has mastered Werewolf shape shifting may have elected to distribute skill points:
Elemental Arts None
- Werewolf -- 20 skill point
- Lycanthropy -- 20 skill point
- Feral Rage -- 2 skill point
- Rabies -- 2 skill point
- Fury -- 20 skill point
- Oak Sage -- 20 skill points
- Raven -- 1 skill point
- Spirit Wolf -- 1 skill point
- Dire Wolf -- 1 skill points
- Grizzly -- 20 skill points
- Poison Creeper -- 1 skill point
- Carrion Vine -- 1 skill point
This shape shifter has emphasized on werewolf form. A werewolf is very quick and has a easy time running down a group of fast ranged enemies. This is a recommended build for beginners and uses all 110 skill points you can possibly get form leveling and the skill quests.
The high-level oak sage will give the werewolf a great amount of life. This druid will attack with Fury after charging up Feral Rage. The accompanying vines will also serve to replenish the druid's vital juices while he fights.
Here is a sample distribution for a druid who has great skill in the summoning discipline:
- Shape Shifting
- Werewolf - 1 skill point
- Wearbear - 6 skill point
- Lycanthropy - 6 skill points
- Maul - 6 skill points
- Shockwave- 6 skill points
- Raven - 1 skill point
- Spirit Wolf - 20 skill point
- Dire Wolf - 20 skill points
- Grizzly - 20 skill points
- Oak Sage - 20 skill points
- Heart of Wolverine - 1 skill point
- Spirit of Barbs - 1 skill point
- Poison Creeper - 1 skill point
- Carrion Vine - 1 skill point
This build leaves you with only one skill point left so you will not be able to try out the elemental skills.
In situations where the enemy is pesky and quick, the druid would summon a trio of dire wolves to help him track down the opposition. In most situations, however, the druid would rely on his oak sage and grizzly to draw enemies together and then strike them with his fire spells to weaken and destroy them.