Balance Druid DPS Spec, Builds, Talents, and Glyphs (WoD 6.1.2)

Balance Druid Art Image
General Information

On this page, we present the viable talent and glyph choices for Balance Druids in World of Warcraft WoD 6.1.2. We detail what each of the talents and glyphs do and in which situations they should be taken.

The other pages of our Balance Druid guide can be accessed from the table of contents on the right.

About Our Reviewer

This guide has been reviewed and approved by Cyous, high-end Balance Druid theorycrafter, who raids in Promethean. You can follow him on Twitter.

1. Talent Choices↑top

Level Choices
15 Feline Swiftness Displacer Beast Wild Charge
30 Ysera's Gift Renewal Cenarion Ward
45 Faerie Swarm Mass Entanglement Typhoon
60 Soul of the Forest Incarnation: Chosen of Elune Force of Nature
75 Incapacitating Roar Ursol's Vortex Mighty Bash
90 Heart of the Wild Dream of Cenarius Nature's Vigil
100 Euphoria Stellar Flare Balance of Power
+ show color blind markers - hide color blind markers
  • Performance-enhancing
  • Survival
  • Crowd Control
  • Movement
  • Utility
  • Situational

Talents can easily be changed, thanks to Tome of the Clear Mind Icon Tomes of the Clear Mind. You will frequently find yourself changing talents and glyphs between encounters, in order to adapt your play style to different mechanics. Therefore, it is important to understand what each of your talents does and how they affect your play style.

2. Tier 1 (Level 15) Talents↑top

Tier 1 talents offer a choice between 3 means of increasing your movement abilities.

  • Feline Swiftness Icon Feline Swiftness is a passive ability that increases your movement speed by 15% at all times.
  • Displacer Beast Icon Displacer Beast is an active ability that teleports you 20 yards forward, activates Cat Form Icon Cat Form, and grants you a 50% increase in movement speed for 4 seconds.
  • Wild Charge Icon Wild Charge is an active ability that differs based on the shapeshift form you are in, as follows:
    • No shapeshift form: you fly to an ally's location.
    • Moonkin Form Icon Moonkin Form: you leap backwards.
    • Bear Form Icon Bear Form: you charge an enemy, immobilizing them for 4 seconds.
    • Cat Form Icon Cat Form: you leap behind an enemy, dazing them for 3 seconds.
    • Travel Form Icon Travel Form: you leap forward 20 yards.
    • Aquatic Form Icon Aquatic Form: your swim speed is increased by 150% for 5 seconds.

The choice here will come down to either Feline Swiftness Icon Feline Swiftness or Displacer Beast Icon Displacer Beast. Wild Charge Icon Wild Charge is generally not very useful.

Feline Swiftness will be your default choice for most fights, with Displacer Beast being useful situationally. It is worth noting that Displacer Beast costs two global cooldowns to use, one to activate it (which shifts you into Cat Form Icon Cat Form), and then a second one to go back into Moonkin Form Icon Moonkin Form.

3. Tier 2 (Level 30) Talents↑top

Tier 2 talents offer a choice between 3 healing spells.

  • Ysera's Gift Icon Ysera's Gift is a passive spell that heals you for 4% of your maximum health every 5 seconds. If you are at maximum health, then it heals a random injured party or raid member within 100 yards for the same amount.
  • Renewal Icon Renewal is a self-heal for 30% of your maximum health with a 2-minute cooldown.
  • Cenarion Ward Icon Cenarion Ward is a buff that you can place on a friendly player, lasting up to 30 seconds. When the player takes damage, Cenarion Ward activates a 6-second HoT on the player, consuming Cenarion Ward in the process.

Ysera's Gift Icon Ysera's Gift is very nice because it is entirely passive, and therefore very easy to use.

Renewal Icon Renewal provides a very reliable self-heal that may be preferable in some situations, or if you simply prefer to have more control over your abilities.

Cenarion Ward Icon Cenarion Ward is as good as Renewal, but it has a shorter cooldown. This means that it can be used to heal more frequent damage, but at the same time it has the disadvantage of using up more global cooldowns.

4. Tier 3 (Level 45) Talents↑top

Tier 3 talents offer a choice between 3 crowd control spells.

  • Faerie Swarm Icon Faerie Swarm is an improved version of Faerie Fire Icon Faerie Fire, which it replaces. In addition to Faerie Fire's effects, Faerie Swarm also slows the target's movement speed by 50% for 15 seconds.
  • Mass Entanglement Icon Mass Entanglement roots all enemies in an area around the target for up to 20 seconds.
  • Typhoon Icon Typhoon is a spell that affects enemies in a cone in front of you, knocking them back and dazing them for 6 seconds.

The choice between these talents is largely irrelevant in terms of DPS performance. You will simply choose the one which you prefer most, or which best suits the encounter mechanics. That said, Typhoon Icon Typhoon will probably be the most useful talent in the majority of fights.

5. Tier 4 (Level 60) Talents↑top

Tier 4 offers a choice between 3 performance-enhancing talents.

  • Soul of the Forest Icon Soul of the Forest passively increases the damage bonus from Lunar and Solar Empowerement by an additional 15%.
  • Incarnation: Chosen of Elune Icon Incarnation: Chosen of Elune increases your spell damage 15% for 30 seconds. This ability has a 3-minute cooldown.
  • Force of Nature Icon Force of Nature is an active ability that summons a treant which casts Entangling Roots Icon Entangling Roots on your current target, and then spams Wrath Icon Wrath on it every 2 seconds for 15 seconds. Force of Nature has a maximum of 3 charges, and a 20-second recharge time.

Given the great synergy present in the Balance Druid rotation, the value of these talents must be considered together with the value of the other DPS-increasing talents, the tier 7 talents.

With this in mind, a few optimal talent combinations exist.

For single target DPS, the most efficient talent choice is Soul of the Forest Icon Soul of the Forest (coupled with Euphoria Icon Euphoria). The DPS benefit here drops sharply if you have to move even a little bit, so in practice this is only superior on very few fights.

Another very strong choice for single target DPS is Incarnation: Chosen of Elune Icon Incarnation: Chosen of Elune (coupled with Balance of Power Icon Balance of Power or Stellar Flare Icon Stellar Flare). In the first case, your DPS is quite competitive and your rotation is easy to master. In the second case, your rotation is more difficult, but the addition of another DoT (from Stellar Flare) means that you are less sensitive to movement.

For multiple target situations, by far the best combination of talents is Incarnation: Chosen of Elune coupled with Stellar Flare.

6. Tier 5 (Level 75) Talents↑top

Tier 5 talents offer a choice between 3 crowd control spells.

  • Incapacitating Roar Icon Incapacitating Roar is an AoE incapacitate that lasts for 3 seconds and affects all enemies in a 10 yard radius. It has a 30-second cooldown.
  • Ursol's Vortex Icon Ursol's Vortex is a targeted AoE slow, which slows down enemies in an 8-yard radius by 50%. When enemies first try to leave the slowing area, they are pulled back in. The vortex lasts 10 seconds, and it has a 1-minute cooldown.
  • Mighty Bash Icon Mighty Bash is a single target 5-second stun.

The choice between these talents is largely irrelevant in terms of DPS performance. You will simply choose the one which you prefer most, or which best suits the encounter mechanics.

7. Tier 6 (Level 90) Talents↑top

Tier 6 talents offer a choice between 3 talents that improve your ability to act as a hybrid.

  • Heart of the Wild Icon Heart of the Wild is a 6-minute cooldown that greatly improves your ability to tank, heal, and deal melee damage.
    • When in Bear Form Icon Bear Form and Cat Form Icon Cat Form, you gain a massive increase in Agility.
    • Your healing and damaging spells are more effective and cost no Mana.
  • Dream of Cenarius Icon Dream of Cenarius is a passive ability that causes your Moonfire Icon Moonfire and Sunfire Icon Sunfire to heal an injured ally whenever you are at Lunar or Solar Peak.
  • Nature's Vigil Icon Nature's Vigil is a 90-second cooldown that causes all single-target healing and damaging spells and abilities to heal a nearby friendly target, based on the amount of healing or damage done (20% for heals, and 40% for damaging spells or abilities).

The choice in this tier depends on what kind of assistance you want to be able to provide for your raid.

Dream of Cenarius Icon Dream of Cenarius is entirely passive, meaning that you will heal players as part of your rotation, making it easy to manage. That said, it will provide no benefit if you do not manage to refresh your DoTs at their respective peaks.

Nature's Vigil Icon Nature's Vigil gives you a lot more control over when your healing is increased, since it acts as a healing cooldown. This is also a passive option. All you need to do is cast it and it will do the healing for you.

Finally, Heart of the Wild Icon Heart of the Wild is very versatile, but has a long cooldown to compensate for this. You can use it to blanket your entire raid with Rejuvenation Icon Rejuvenation, for example, although you will lose DPS doing so and it is situational. You can also use it to tank, but this is not recommended.

8. Tier 7 (Level 100) Talents↑top

Tier 7 talents offer you a choice of three ways to improve your DPS performance.

  • Euphoria Icon Euphoria passively reduces your Balance Energy cycle time by 50%. Additionally, Lunar and Solar Empowerments reduce the cast time of the affected spells by 20% (Starfire Icon Starfire and Wrath Icon Wrath, respectively).
  • Stellar Flare Icon Stellar Flare is a DoT that deals Spellstorm damage over 24 seconds, and which benefits from both Lunar and Solar Eclipses. It deals the most damage when the two Eclipses are balanced.
  • Balance of Power Icon Balance of Power passively causes your direct damage spells to reenergize your DoTs. Your Starfire Icon Starfires extend the duration of Moonfire Icon Moonfire by 6 seconds, and your Wrath Icon Wraths extend the duration of Sunfire Icon Sunfire by 4 seconds. Additionally, this talent also increases the periodic damage of your Moonfire and Sunfire by 10%.

As we mentioned above, the value of tier 4 and tier 7 talents should be considered together. See the discussion above to see which tier 7 talents are best for which situations.

9. Major Glyphs↑top

No Major Glyphs improve your DPS performance, but a few of them are still worth mentioning for the other benefits that they offer. Minor Glyphs are entirely cosmetic and do not affect your gameplay at all.

  • Glyph of Rebirth Icon Glyph of Rebirth is very useful if you ever intend to use your Rebirth Icon Rebirth, since it allows the target of your Rebirth to come back to life with full health, meaning that they do not risk instantly dying again to environmental damage.
  • Glyph of Moonwarding Icon Glyph of Moonwarding removes the bonus armor granted by your Moonkin Form Icon Moonkin Form, but instead grants you 10% increased maximum health. This glyph will improve your survivability on any fights where there is only (or at least predominantly) magic damage.
  • Glyph of Astral Communion Icon Glyph of Astral Communion allows you to cast Astral Communion Icon Astral Communion while moving.
  • Glyph of Stampeding Roar Icon Glyph of Stampeding Roar increases the range of Stampeding Roar Icon Stampeding Roar by 30 yards. If using this ability is vital to your raid's strategy, this glyph is excellent.

10. Minor Glyphs↑top

There is only one Minor Glyph worth talking about. Glyph of Grace Icon Glyph of Grace reduces the damage you take from fall damage even when you are not in Cat Form Icon Cat Form. While this is not likely to be of use often during PvE progression, it can sometimes help.

11. Changelog↑top

  • 23 Feb. 2015: Updated the description of tier 2 and 7 talents to account for Patch 6.1 changes.
  • 30 Nov. 2014: Updated the description of Nature's Vigil Icon Nature's Vigil, as per a recent hotfix.
  • 23 Oct. 2014: Made a few tweaks to the talent discussions.
  • 19 Oct. 2014: Added a small updated to the tier 4 talent discussion.