Balance PvP Guide: 5.0+(Updated: 8/27/212)
Notes: [XXX] Need to add tooltip/link. (XXX) Personal notes for me.
My Druid's armory: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/characte...agoto/advanced
Table of Contents
2. What is PvP Power(To be updated when I know more)
5. Stats and how they affect us
6. Enchanting/Reforging/Gemming(To be updated due to PvP power)
7. Our role in PvP
8. Eclipse Explained
9. How to deal damage
10. Crowd Control
11. Symbiosis (To be added)
12. Tips n Tricks
Welcome to the End of Cataclysm Balance Druid PvP Guide. I’m Nagoto of Bloodhoof. A little about myself, I’m a PvP’er and PvE’er. I have been 2.2k as both Balance and Feral, 2k as Resto this season. I’m not the best, and none of this will ever be 100% undisputed accurate but I will do my personal best to get as close as possible to that. With the sweeping changes between Beta and 5.0 going live coming up I will be doing updates often as the information changes.
2. What is PvP Power?
PvP power increases your Healing and Damage done by a certain % when you are in Arena or Battlegrounds. This is only found on PvP gear and through certain gems. This makes PvE gear NOT an attractive option for PvP due to the lacking of PvP power.
Stormy Ocean Sapphire
As of now it's unclear which will be stronger. PvP power or INT. Since power is only active in BGs and arena, this might affect the decision.
With path 5.0 we get an over-hauled talent system. The goal from Blizzard is to make these talents CHOICES. Honestly it depends on the comp you’re running as well as personal preference. There is no end all answer. These are just MY opinions.
T1. Feline Swiftness Displacer Beast Wild Charge
This tier is not really a choice. The passive speed increase just isn't THAT needed, between boot enchant as well as travel form. Displacer Beast has a lot of flaws, many of which were inherited from the old rogue vanish. If you have any DoTs on you, the stealth will break instantly. Also it cannot be used if you have Faerie Fire on you. Wild Charge is the pick without a doubt. It allows you to do different things depending on your form. In Moonkin it lets you do a leap backwards like Disengage. In Travel Form it allows you to leap forward. Caster form is where this ability really shines. It acts like a reverse Leap of Faith gripping you to an ally. This will allow you to eat traps for your partner. This is HUGE in avoiding CC, knowing when to use Wild Charge for kiteing, and when to eat CC will mean the difference between a good moonkin and a GREAT one.
T2. Nature\'s Swiftness Renewal Cenarion Ward
This tier is a bit of a harder choice. Renewal looks like a decent choice at first but compared to the other two options I don’t think it will be taken often. Cenarion Ward offers a safe-guard for hard switches. If a melee cleave is tunneling you, toss it on your healer. They swap to him with a Stun and he will have a powerful HoT on him. It’s a good support talent. Nature\'s Swiftness is in my option the main pick out of these three. For a few reasons, first it’s versatile and can be used offensively AND defensively. You can Nature\'s Swiftness Root or Clone a target. In addition you can use it coupled with Healing Touch for a strong heal. It also has a shorter CD compared to Renewal.
T3. Faerie Swarm Mass Entanglement Typhoon
This tier is 100% not a choice for ME. I will always pick Typhoon. Nothing is better than clipping a healer running back behind his box on sewers and seeing him fly off the edge going “WHAT THE FRICK JUST HAPPENED!?” as we kill their dps. Faerie Swarm can be useful for kiteing, but honestly between Roots, clone, our overall mobility from shape shifting, travel form, wild charge and Shrooms i don’t feel it’s needed. Mass Entanglement I can see being VERY attractive in RBGs. Mass Entanglement > Solar Beam their healers. In 3s, especially while spread DoTing the roots won’t be as useful in my opinion. That leaves good old Typhoon. It also got a nice graphic over-haul. You can use it as a ghetto interrupt, knocking someone back mid cast. On sewers and Blade Edge arena you can knock people off the edge, splitting them.
T4. Soul of the Forest Incarnation: Chosen of Elune Force of Nature
Our damage tier, Soul of the Forest is a set and forget passive that will help get you back into eclipse faster. This is a very good talent overall. Incarnation: Chosen of Elune is interesting, we get TWO dps cool-downs both of which have 3 minuet cool downs. My first instinct was to slap them both together along with my on-use trinket I a macro. This is BAD! Incarnation: Chosen of Elune and Celestial Alignment should not be used together unless you’re 100% sure it will grant you a kill. This is because Incarnation: Chosen of Elune lasts 30 seconds and only increases your damage while in eclipse. Celestial Alignment lasts only 15 seconds and after its effect wears doesn’t consider you in eclipse. This means you have to choose; 30 full seconds of yummy Incarnation: Chosen of Elune increased DoT spreading goodness- or 15seconds of extremely powerful damage by using them together. I feel you should keep them separate. Force of Nature got an overhaul as well, they do different things depending on your spec. For balance they cast wraths at the target and can cast roots. I personally feel they aren’t an attractive choice even though they do decent damage; we don’t need another form of root since they will share diminishing returns. I can say they are useful for eating traps but Wild Charge takes care of that.
T5. Disorienting Roar Ursol\'s Vortex Mighty Bash
This tier is fantastic in all regards, and will honestly come down to what comp you’re running. Try to make a choice that doesn’t share DR with one of your partners. Each have their uses. Disorienting Roar can be fantastic to quickly get DPS off you or your healer. If a rogue smoke bombs you, simply trinket > Disorienting Roar and walk out. The down-side is that the effect will break on damage. So if you have the target DoT’ed already it won’t be much use. Mighty Bash is our Bear form > Bash in one button, on a 50 second CD. Nice, but not my favorite due to having to be in melee range! Ursol\'s Vortex is one of my FAVORITE new ability’s out of this expansion. It works like this, you place down a circle of wind and it slows everyone inside. The first time they walk out of it, they are gripped back in. You can do some fantastic things with this ability, I could honestly write a few pages on it but I’ll keep it short. You can use it to keep someone in solar beam. Keep them stuck out of Line of Sight (LoS) of their partner and even for kiteing. It has extreme synergy with a lot of other classes. It can keep a target in a Smoke Bomb. Place is on your Death Knight and let him Death Grip a target. The list goes on and on.
T6. Heart of the Wild Dream of Cenarius Nature\'s Vigil
[Heart of the Wild] would be a game breaking talent- IF it was not on a 6 minuet cooldown. It would allow you to be a ghetto healer for 45 seconds. Dream of Cenarius gives you a passive when you hard cast damage that increases your Rejuvenation or Healing Touch by 30%. This stacks with Nature\'s Swiftness healing bonus, and a damage increase to MF/SF after hard-casting HT. Another set and forget passive. Nature\'s Vigil is my personal pick out of the three. It’s a straight damage increase for us on a three minuet cool-down which lines up nicely with our other cool-downs. Overall all I’m not a huge fan of this Tier, Heart is way too long of a CD, Dream is clunky at best to get extra damage through it, leaving Vigil in my opinion as the most logical choice.
(Thank you Apepi!)
We have honestly a decent amount of hard choices when it comes to glyphs as balance. The ones I list are viable choices. If you guys think there are other good options let me know! The ones with * next to them are the ones I am personally running with next season, but they can change depending on your comp!
Glyph of the Moonbeast *
Glyph of Stampede
Glyph of Entangling Roots
Glyph of Cyclone
Glyph of Barkskin *
Glyph of Nature\'s Grasp
Glyph of Fae Silence (This could be clunky to use consistently.)
Glyph of Innervate(With how low regen will be next season. This might be an attractive choice.)
Glyph of Solar Beam *
Minor: There don't really affect PvP game-play. So pick which ones you enjoy the most.
Glyph of Stars (If you don't like the moonkin form, but honestly who doesn't love our silky feathers?)
Glyph of Charm Woodland Creature* (ADORABLE!)
Glyph of Grace
Glyph of Aquatic Form
Glyph of the Stag * (My other mount is a druid!)
Glyph of the Cheetah
Glyph of the Predator
Honestly I feel Race should come down to personal preference. In regards to best Racials I’d have to say Troll = Night Elf > Tauren > Worgen. Troll offers the best damage increase with Berserking. Shadowmeld is an amazing ability. When you use it, it drops target on you. Today almost everyone uses Focus Macro’s to CC targets. If you know you are about to get Feared you can meld to drop target and not get feared ect. Taruen offers War Stomp which is extremely helpful for getting off clutch cyclones. Worgen is the least useful out of the bunch, increased critical strike and a ghetto-dash called Darkflight. I have personally tried each of the races, it doesn’t make a huge difference in game play. Pick the one YOU enjoy the most!
5.Stats and how they affect us.
In PVP we have a pretty Cut and Dry view on stats. We don’t really have to concern ourselves about the detail of it too much. We take the best stat and stack as much of it as possible. Though most people will just follow the reforge list, this is the reasoning behind it.
Intelligence: or INT, increases our spell power, spell crit and mana pool. In 5.0 INT will no longer increase our mana. As of 4.3 this is our strongest stat and should be gemmed for. You cannot reforge INT.
Haste: Increases our cast speed. Lowers our global CD and adds additional ticks to our DoTs and HoTs. This is our best stat by leaps and bounds because it affects our offensive and defensive ability. Faster Cyclones and heals as well as more damage.
Mastery: Increases the damage bonus from Eclipse. Fantastic boost while in eclipse, but out of eclipse it gives us 0 Benefit. Meaning if you’re out of eclipse you might as well not even have a mastery.
Critical Strike: Increases our chances for Critical Strikes. This stat is pure RNG (Random Number Generated). It’s all luck and honestly our weakest stat.
PvP Power: Increases our Damage and Healing done. Only active in Arena and Battlegrounds. It's going to be a numbers game if this can compete with Int.
Hit/Spirit: Increases our chance to hit with spells and ability’s. We need 4% Spell hit for PvP. 1 Spirit is the same as 1 Hit. So either will work.
Reforging: Hit till 4% > Haste > Mastery > Crit
Enchanting: TO BE ADDED (Once I learn how to add links XP )
Gemming: TO BE ADDED
7. Our Role in PvP
This is just a little bit about what exactly we are brought for in arena. Balance is in a very interesting place right now in terms of PvP. We bring extremely high spread damage through our DoTs and Starfall. Heavy CC with Roots, Solar beam and cyclone, and strong off heals. Tranquility can top off your whole team if used correctly in 3s. We are a mobile spec that can literally do it all in terms of utility, we are also one of the most under-estimated specs in the game.
8. Eclipse Explained
When you select Balance as your talent specialization, you gain an odd bar under you mana bar. It has a picture of the Moon and the Sun on it, and it’s you’re new best friend. Your Wrath gives you Arcane Power moving the bar towards the moon, and your Starfire gives you Nature Power, moving the bar towards the sun. Starsurge gives whatever is more beneficial to you at the time, if your bars moving towards the sun, it will give nature damage for example. When you hit either the sun or the moon you go into an Eclipse, increasing your Arcane or Nature damage. When you enter eclipse it gives you enter eclipse you gain 35% of your mana in addition to 15% haste for 15 seconds. In 5.0 Lunar will also RESET the cool-down on Starfall, more on this later.
Blizzard gave us this amazing ability in 5.0 called Astral Communion which is a channel that gives you Solar/Lunar energy depending on which you need. If it’s kicked it locks out both Arcane and Nature but with our new PvP 90 set we can cast it while moving.
Spells affected by Eclipse-
Lunar: Starfire, Moonfire and Starfall.
Solar: Wrath, Sunfire
9. How to deal damage
Balance Druids have the ability to deal damage in a few different ways, almost like Shadow Priests but better (Well I’m a bit bias on the subject!). Our two ways of dealing damage are Direct, and Spread.
Direct: *The best eclipse to be in when you want to deal high single target damage to a target is Lunar. Make sure your kill target has both Moonfire and Sunfire on it. Use your on-use trinket > Starfall then cast Starfire. If you get a Shooting Star proc use the instant Starsurge right after you cast [url=http://www.wowdb.com/spells/2912]Starfire[/url for a large amount of burst.
Spread: The goal is to get Moonfire and Sunfire on every target you can as well as pets. This is because A. all targets are now taking damage which is making their healer either dispel or heal more and B. More Dots means more [Shooting Star] procs. Use your on-use trinket coupled with Starfall with everyone DoTed for large spread pressure. Either eclipse will help.
10. Crowd Control
Druids as a class have one of the single most powerful Crowd Control abilities in the game. [Cyclone] when cast on a target makes it so they cannot do anything, or be affected by anyone else. It’s like a [Banish] for players. Check the 12.Tips n Tricks for easier ways to hard cast spells and juke kicks!
You can use Cyclone offensively and Defensively.
Offensively: You can cyclone a healer to stop them from helping their partners, another trick you can do is "Offensive Clone". This is when you're on a kill target, they get low and someone- either their healer or themselves use a defensive CD that will prevent you from killing them OR Diminishing returns will be coming off the healer soon. You Cyclone the kill target (Make sure you communicate this!!) taking 6 seconds off the kill target's defensive CDS. Does your lock need another 1-2 seconds for fear to come off DR? That Cyclone on the kill target ensures he won't get healed for the full 6 seconds so he can get a full fear off!
Defensively. There is no real trick to this. Use it on people trying to kill you, or the ones trying to CC your healer.
11. Symbiosis Break Down (To be added)
12.Tips n Tricks
Force of Nature can be used to eat hunter traps.
Wild Mushroom: Detonate can has A LOT of uses. You can use it to break hunters, ferals and rogues out of stealth. Use it on the edge of a pillar and you can hit a healer to keep him in combat and prevent drinking. Stack three on top of each other for decent burst. You can place them around your pillar to have a decent slow while you and your healer pillar hump.
Typhoon is an amazing tool when used right. You can knock people off on sewers and blade edge. Use it as a ghetto interrupts or try to knock sheathed players out. Knock players back INTO your solar beam after they run out.
Solar Beam can be used like a kick or interrupt, NOT just a blanket silence even though the tool tip doesn't say it. The lock out seems to be 4-5 seconds. You can also Root > Beam on a healer. If they don't have a trinket they are stuck in the silence for the duration! This along with our T4 talent and clone we can do a decent solo CC chain. Though it isn't convenient in 3s, in duels you can have a warlock pet sit in solar beam (if the fel
hunter is meleeing you) and they will be silenced- which means they can't spell lock you!
Tranquility does not require line of sight. This means you can go behind a pillar and heal your partners as long as they are within 40 yards. This is extremely powerful and 100% WORTH using! Don't underestimate this. If you have a Fel pup on you, use Nature's Grasp and root it, then LoS it around the pillar so it cannot spell lock you.
Stampeding Roar Affects you AND those around you. If you and your partner get rooted, you can use it to get them out. Also if you're fighting another decent moonkin and they Root > Beam your healer. You can get them out of it!
Shooting Stars right after a [Starfire] is HUGE burst. Especially if you're in Lunar. Try to not use SS by itself unless you know you won't get the sf or wrath off.
[Starfire] is arcane which means when it is kicked you can still cast nature spells. This is HUGE, make sure to keep this in mind. They way I see it, you give them a choice, kick your [Starfire] and let you free cast [Cyclone]s or let you cast it and eat huge damage. If melee are training you, try doing a [Starfire] first, melee usually kick the first cast they see out of reaction. This can give you breathing room to [Cyclone] a dps off you or CC their healer. You can clone a target, and start hard casting another one immediately after. Sometimes they will trinket the first clone quickly, then get hit by the second!
How to get three Starfalls in a row: This requires a bit of set up and practice but you can do it every arena match or duel! Use Astral Communion until you are at 75 Lunar energy (One more tick before Lunar eclipse). Use Starfall #1. Then get into Lunar, either by getting hit (With out 4set), hard casting damage or using Astral Communion again When you hit Lunar eclipse Starfall's CD is reset.. Here is where it gets fun. Use Incarnation: Chosen of Elune / On use trinket > Starfall # 2. After Starfall # 2 wears off > Celestial Alignment to go into Solar/Lunar which resets the cooldown AGAIN. At this point you should still have Incarnation up. Starfall # 3. Congratulations, you now know how to do triple starfall (Patent Pending).
These are just the macros I personally use.
Instead of doing arena 1-3 for Clone, roots solar beam ect. I just make focus macros for each of them and swap my focus with these. You can do whatever you prefer. This just saves keybinding space imo.
/cast [stance:1, target=focus] Skull Bash(bear form); [stance:3, target=focus] Skull Bash(cat form)
This will do a focus skull bash whether you are in Cat or Bear form.
/cast [target=name] Remove Corruption
Make one of these for each of your partners. You can remove Hex instantly!
/cast [target=focus] Entangling Roots
/cast [target=focus] Hibernate
/cast [target=focus] Solar Beam
/cast [target=focus] Cyclone
The spells I have focus macro's for.
Honestly the only REQUIRED add-on you should 100% get is Gladius. This is an improved version of the arena frames.
Other than that I use;
I Interrupted That
8/25/12 Original Post
8/27/12 First round of adding tool-tips.
8/28/12 5.0 is Live! Added Glyphs. More tool-tips. Cut out the 4.3 content.
8/29/12 Added Triple Starfall in Tips N Tricks.