Balance Druid DPS Rotation, Cooldowns, and Abilities — Shadowlands 9.0.5

Last updated on Mar 09, 2021 at 18:50 by Bora 51 comments
General Information

On this page, you will learn how to optimize the rotation of your Balance Druid in both single-target and multiple-target situations. We also have advanced sections about cooldowns, procs, etc. in order to minmax your DPS. All our content is updated for World of Warcraft — Shadowlands 9.0.5.

If you were looking for WoW Classic content, please refer to our Classic Balance DPS Druid rotation.

1.

Balance Druid Rotation Introduction

Balance Druid gameplay is a standard build and spend class with a predictable cadence to their rotation.

At the start of combat or with each use or proc of Celestial Alignment Icon Celestial Alignment / Incarnation: Chosen of Elune Icon Incarnation: Chosen of Elune, you choose between either Solar or Lunar Eclipse Icon Eclipse. To enter Solar Eclipse, you must cast two Starfire Icon Starfires and to enter Lunar Eclipse, you need to cast two Wrath Icon Wrath.

From there on, you build Astral Power using the appropriate filler. In Solar Eclipse Icon Eclipse, you cast Wrath Icon Wrath to gain Astral Power and, in Lunar Eclipse, you will cast Starfire Icon Starfire. Each Eclipse lasts 15-seconds and you will then be forced to swap to the opposite Eclipse. Eclipse uptime is incredibly important and you should aim to be inside Eclipse as often as you can.

On single-target, you will use Starsurge Icon Starsurge, which costs 30 Astral Power. Since Starsurge buffs your fillers, you normally want to cast this at the start of an Eclipse Icon Eclipse. On single-target, you will often find yourself pooling to 90 Astral Power then casting three Starsurges in a row.

On multi-target, you want to be maintaining Starfall Icon Starfall and casting Starsurge Icon Starsurge when you can, assuming you can fully maintain Starfall.

In this guide, when we refer to our standard rotation or priority list, the priority below is what is being referred back to.

Use the button below to select your Covenant to see how that changes the rotation:

  1. Enter Eclipse Icon Eclipse
  2. Apply or maintain your Moonfire Icon Moonfire, Sunfire Icon Sunfire, and Stellar Flare Icon Stellar Flare (if talented)
  3. Keep Celestial Alignment Icon Celestial Alignment / Incarnation: Chosen of Elune Icon Incarnation: Chosen of Elune (if talented) on cooldown
  4. Spend your Astral Power on Starsurge Icon Starsurge or Starfall Icon Starfall on multi-target.
  5. Do not lose uses of Warrior of Elune Icon Warrior of Elune, Force of Nature Icon Force of Nature, or Fury of Elune Icon Fury of Elune (if talented).
  6. Cast the Eclipse-appropriate filler.
2.

Balance Druid Night Fae Rotation

Night Fae is the more popular choice, largely in part to their powerful Covenant ability, Convoke the Spirits Icon Convoke the Spirits. This ability is strongest on single-target and the Night Fae opening rotation goes as follows.

2.1.

Night Fae Basic Opener Rotation

Given the strength of the Legendary Balance of All Things Icon Balance of All Things, it is assumed in this rotation that you have it equipped in almost all situations. If you do not have it or you have a different Legendary equipped, check the Standard box below.

  • Show Standard
  1. Cast two Wrath Icon Wrath 3.5-seconds before combat and enter Eclipse Icon Eclipse. Cast an additional Wrath if necessary.
  2. Cast Starfire Icon Starfire to avoid pre-pulling
  3. Apply Moonfire Icon Moonfire, Sunfire Icon Sunfire, and Stellar Flare Icon Stellar Flare (if talented)
  4. Cast Warrior of Elune Icon Warrior of Elune, Force of Nature Icon Force of Nature, or Fury of Elune Icon Fury of Elune (if talented)
  5. Cast Celestial Alignment Icon Celestial Alignment / Incarnation: Chosen of Elune Icon Incarnation: Chosen of Elune, your potions, and any trinket
  6. Cast Convoke the Spirits Icon Convoke the Spirits
  7. Spend the rest of your Astral Power on Starsurge Icon Starsurge
  8. Build Astral Power for next Eclipse Icon Eclipse using Wrath Icon Wrath
2.2.

Night Fae Double On-Use Trinket

Double on-use trinkets are viable for Night Fae single target. To use two trinkets, you need your first to be Empyreal Ordnance Icon Empyreal Ordnance and your second trinket something along the lines of Instructor's Divine Bell or Inscrutable Quantum Device Icon Inscrutable Quantum Device. Below is the double on-use opener but you can follow that later in the fight.

  1. Cast two Wrath Icon Wrath 3.5-seconds before combat and enter Eclipse Icon Eclipse. Cast and additional Wrath if necessary.
  2. Cast Empyreal Ordnance Icon Empyreal Ordnance
  3. Apply Moonfire Icon Moonfire, Sunfire Icon Sunfire, and Stellar Flare Icon Stellar Flare (if talented)
  4. Cast Warrior of Elune Icon Warrior of Elune, Force of Nature Icon Force of Nature, or Fury of Elune Icon Fury of Elune (if talented)
  5. Cast Starfire Icon Starfire and spend Astral Power so that you end the Eclipse Icon Eclipse below 50 Astral Power
  6. Reapply Moonfire Icon Moonfire, Sunfire Icon Sunfire, and Stellar Flare Icon Stellar Flare (if talented)
  7. Cast Celestial Alignment Icon Celestial Alignment / Incarnation: Chosen of Elune Icon Incarnation: Chosen of Elune, your potion, and your second trinket
  8. Cast Convoke the Spirits Icon Convoke the Spirits
2.3.

Convoke the Spirits Optimization

Convoke the Spirits Icon Convoke the Spirits is a strong cooldown that is made even better when combined with our natural cooldowns as well. Whenever possible, you want to sync these two spells together without losing any uses of either. This requires you to understand fight timings. Generally, you will play around your Convoke and not your Celestial Alignment Icon Celestial Alignment, as you almost never want to cast Celestial Alignment without Convoke up as well. When using double on-use, it is better to lose a use of Convoke the Spirits Icon Convoke the Spirits than desync, if it means you get more burst windows with your trinkets.

Before casting Convoke the Spirits Icon Convoke the Spirits, you will want to make sure your targets are fully DoTed up with Moonfire Icon Moonfire. Moonfire can and will eat up Balance spells, which could otherwise be Wrath Icon Wrath for better Astral Power generation, Starsurge Icon Starsurge, or even Starfall Icon Starfall. This is most important on multi-target.

2.3.1.

Balance of All Things Changes and Tips

Balance of All Things Icon Balance of All Things is a Legendary power that increases our Critical Strike chance of that Eclipses spell type. This allows Astral Damage to double-dip into this Legendary as it is both Nature and Arcane.

With this you follow the same priority as above but always prioritize the Balance of All Things Icon Balance of All Things window over everything else. You must get off three Starsurge Icon Starsurges at the start of this window by pooling between each pool. You will often times overcap on Astral Power slightly between each Balance of all thing cycle.

Pay attention to the pandemic window of your DoTs. You are usually using all three DoTs on fights where you use this Legendary which makes it difficult to have high uptime on them. Try to apply them at the end of an Eclipse or as soon as they enter their pandemic window to avoid them falling off during the beginning of your Eclipse.

The pandemic windows for each DoT are the following:

3.

Multi-target Rotation for Balance Druids

Lunar is the preferred multi-target and cleave Eclipse Icon Eclipse state. You can use your cooldown when it feels optimal, but beware of losing uses especially in dungeons.

  1. Apply Sunfire Icon Sunfire if you can optimally cleave multiple-targets
  2. Maintain Starfall Icon Starfall to consume Astral Power.
  3. Cast two unempowered fillers (Wrath Icon Wrath or Starfire Icon Starfire) to enter the appropriate Eclipse Icon Eclipse state. Prioritize Lunar Eclipse for multi-target.
  4. Keep Fury of Elune Icon Fury of Elune and Warrior of Elune Icon Warrior of Elune (if talented) on cooldown.
  5. When in Solar Eclipse, cast Moonfire Icon Moonfire on all targets that will live through the next Lunar cycle.
  6. Cast Starsurge Icon Starsurge when available. Always keep enough Astral Power for Starfall Icon Starfall when its low duration.
  7. Cast the Eclipse Icon Eclipse appropriate filler to try to fill up your Astral Power for the next Eclipse Icon Eclipse.
3.1.

Optimizing Multi-target

Multi-target and cleave work a little differently than the normal rotation as seen above. Here are a few rules about Starfall Icon Starfall.

Our DoT application rules have also changed:

There are some situations that change which spells we prioritize in an Eclipse:

  • With 5 stacked targets in Lunar Eclipse Icon Eclipse, maintain Starfall Icon Starfall and only cast Starfire Icon Starfire even when capped on Astral Power
  • With 5 stacked targets in Solar Eclipse Icon Eclipse, cast Starfire Icon Starfire over Wrath Icon Wrath. This is increased by 1-target per 20% Mastery rating
4.

Cooldown Usage for Balance Druids

As a Balance Druid, you only have one DPS cooldown, by default: Celestial Alignment Icon Celestial Alignment. You should use this during periods of increased damage to the boss. In any case, it should be used as many times as possible during the encounter.

Celestial Alignment Icon Celestial Alignment also fits into the Eclipse theme. When this cooldown (Incarnation: Chosen of Elune Icon Incarnation: Chosen of Elune as well) ends, your Eclipses reset allowing you to choose the next Eclipse. Use this to set your own path down in an encounter. If you notice on one pull you would have rather been in Lunar Eclipse but you were in Solar Eclipse at that time, think to see if it would be worth swapping which Eclipse state you started on or reset to.

5.

While the rotations we gave in the previous sections will yield good results, there are a few subtleties that you should understand in order to truly excel at your role.

5.1.

Eclipse Tips

Be it your Astral Power generation is not high enough or you got messed up on mechanics, managing Eclipse Icon Eclipse buffs is not always as easy as just pooling at the end and spending at the start. Additionally, using Starsurge Icon Starsurge at the end of an Eclipse or between Eclipses is a big mistake and should always be avoided.

On single-target you want to prioritize Solar Eclipse. This means that you may need to go through you Lunar cycle with maybe only one or two Starsurge Icon Starsurges instead of the optimal three. The goal needs to be getting the triple Starsurge in your optimal Eclipse state every time.

The goal on multi-target is to maximize Starfall Icon Starfall uptime while empowering Lunar Eclipse as much as possible. Much like how you want to be fully optimzing Solar Eclipse for single-target, this means you may have to sacrifice damage in Solar so you can get some beefy Starfire Icon Starfire cleaves.

5.2.

Mitigating Movement DPS

Try to line up windows of movement with instant cast spells like Moonfire Icon Moonfire, Sunfire Icon Sunfire, and Starsurge Icon Starsurge. Additionally you can delay using Warrior of Elune Icon Warrior of Elune and save any amount of charges for movement.

If you know there is movement coming in the coming seconds, do your best to hold 30 Astral Power so you can move and cast a Starsurge Icon Starsurge. Depending on the distance being traveled, you can instead Dash Icon Dash, Wild Charge Icon Wild Charge, or Tiger Dash Icon Tiger Dash to reach your destination more quickly. If you cannot reach your destination within two or three globals cooldowns, it is best to use a movement ability.

For single-target, you should practice what is called "Astral Power pooling" or "Astral Power floating". This is where you purposefully do not use Starsurge Icon Starsurge until you have a large amount of Astral Power saved up. This way, when you need to move, you have enough Astral Power to cast at least two Starsurges, giving you about 2 seconds of movement without any penalty to your DPS.

This method is not as optimal for DPS anymore but can still be used to mitigate DPS loss as doing a slightly delayed Eclipse Icon Eclipse cycle with late Starsurge Icon Starsurge is more beneficial than doing nothing.

6.

Changelog

  • 09 Mar. 2021: Reviewed for Patch 9.0.5.
  • 31 Jan. 2021: Updated Rotation section.
  • 12 Dec. 2020: Updated for Covenants and Legendaries.
  • 23 Nov. 2020: Updated for Shadowlands.
  • 16 Nov. 2020: Updated multi-target rotation.
  • 09 Nov. 2020: Updated multi-target rotation.
  • 17 Oct. 2020: Updated opener.
  • 12 Oct. 2020: Page updated for the Shadowlands pre-patch.
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