Feral Druid Guide for The War Within

Last updated on Jun 18, 2024 at 10:00 by Wordup 26 comments

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on the Feral Druid changes in World of Warcraft's latest expansion, "The War Within." This page is designed to help you navigate the new changes, optimize your gameplay, and get the most out of your Feral Druid in PvE environments.

In this guide, you'll find detailed breakdowns of the new Hero Talent Trees for Feral Druid. We'll explore the most significant updates, and offer insights into how these changes will impact your overall playstyle. Whether you're a veteran Feral Druid or new to the class, our goal is to equip you with the knowledge and tools needed to excel in "The War Within."

1.

Feral Druid: The War Within Expansion Preview

Welcome to our War Within expansion guide for Feral Druid. Ahead of launch, this page will contain everything you need to know about the Feral Druid spec in the forthcoming The War Within expansion, including changes, Hero Talent Trees, and some insight into the state of the spec going into the expansion.

This page is a constantly evolving work in progress, and will be kept up to date with developments during the War Within beta. This is not meant to be a launch guide for Feral Druid, but instead serves as a resource for you to keep up to date with how the spec is evolving on Beta, and what you can expect from its playstyle and feel on launch.

2.

The War Within Changes for Feral Druid

3.

Feral Druid in The War Within

Class Changes Spec Changes
2.1.

Class Changes

The Druid class tree has seen a big reshuffling in its layout, condensing some 2-point talents into single points, and opening up broader pathing options. This gives easier access to some previously very expensive utility, but some previously easily accessible effects are now gated behind a stricter point lock.

A big thing that affects Feral is the removal of melee ability range increases which particularly stings considering the spec has had it since Legion. This causes there to be a high investment to reach the right side of the tree for Renewal Icon Renewal, Typhoon Icon Typhoon and Rising Light, Falling Night Icon Rising Light, Falling Night. Compounding on this, the bottom right containing Innervate Icon Innervate and Nature's Vigil Icon Nature's Vigil is gated behind the newly added 2-point Lore of the Grove Icon Lore of the Grove which is mostly worthless. On the plus side for the right, Fluid Form Icon Fluid Form has been added, making it significantly easier to switch in and out of Cat Form Icon Cat Form to use utility spells such as Disorienting Roar Icon Disorienting Roar.

For the left side, some pathing has been consolidated alongside making Thick Hide Icon Thick Hide easier to access, but the same number of points will be spent here in most situations. A good amount of defense has been baked into this area between that, Matted Fur Icon Matted Fur, Ursine Vigor Icon Ursine Vigor and the new Oakskin Icon Oakskin all being added below the new Instincts of the Claw Icon Instincts of the Claw which is also welcome, and very easy to pick up.

Lastly for the central tree, Stampeding Roar Icon Stampeding Roar is slightly harder to access with more utility "tax" points to pick up, but Lycara's Teachings Icon Lycara's Teachings has been condensed to 2 points here to compensate.

Much of the class tree shuffling on paper looks like it has opened up options, but where it counts, it seems like there is an uncomfortable amount of friction around things that could previously be combined, and the sting still remains of having to path through a lot of tax points to really get to what you want. That said, it is an improvement in terms of power for Feral gameplay compared to the current Dragonflight iteration.

2.2.

Spec Changes

For The War Within, Feral has seen a bit of an overhaul in its resource economy going forward, putting more of a strain on managing Energy and Combo Points effectively and reducing the potential for flooding. AoE has seen the biggest changes, with the Tiger's Fury Icon Tiger's Fury reset removed from Predator Icon Predator significantly slowing down the availability of resources in these situations. Alongside that, AoE delivery has been consolidated by removing Tear Open Wounds Icon Tear Open Wounds, instead refocusing on Primal Wrath Icon Primal Wrath as a Rip Icon Rip application tool, and Rampant Ferocity Icon Rampant Ferocity being put more into central focus to convert Ferocious Bite Icon Ferocious Bite into AoE damage.

With the removal of the Predator Icon Predator reset, more weight has been put into your Tiger's Fury Icon Tiger's Fury windows themselves giving Feral a 30-second ebb and flow cycle. Instead, Predator still grants the duration extension but also grants an additional Haste multiplier to Combo Point-generating abilities while active, adding some extra scaling into the toolkit. Taste for Blood Icon Taste for Blood has also been changed to be a flat amplifier to Ferocious Bite Icon Ferocious Bite that strengthens during these windows, alongside Savage Fury Icon Savage Fury being added as a further boost to the Tiger's Fury windows. Lastly, Tiger's Tenacity Icon Tiger's Tenacity has been granted an added effect to enhance the snapshotting potency of Bleed effects applied while it is active. This is a much more compelling option now compared to Raging Fury Icon Raging Fury, which has also had its duration extension flattened to 5 seconds.

Generally the feel of Feral is somewhat similar to Dragonflight, just much slower and without as many overlapping ability clashes that serve similar purposes. This, in some ways, limits flexibility in builds, but in other ways, allows for the gameplay to be more focused on what the designers intend for the spec to do, so we will see going forward how successful that is.

When it comes to how all of this feels as a whole, there is definitely familiarity to be found coming from Dragonflight, but the pacing difference is even more stark than usual at a new expansion launch. This shift puts more weight into the impact of each cast rather than the frequency. This shift, coupled with the very distinct change in range reduction (especially in AoE), may take some getting used to.

3.

Hero Talent Trees for Feral Druid in The War Within

The flagship feature of The War Within are "Hero Talent Trees", with Feral having the choice between either "Druid of the Claw" shared with Guardian, and "Wildstalker" shared with Restoration. These trees will grant all 11 talent points at once when you reach Level 80 (with a handful of choice nodes), and you can freely swap between them just like regular talent points.

4.

Feral Druid Hero Talents

Druid of the Claw Wildstalker
3.1.

Druid of the Claw

Druid of the Claw very heavily leans into the direct damage build-and-spend aspect of Feral. The keystone talent, Ravage Icon Ravage, is an empowered Ferocious Bite Icon Ferocious Bite cast that triggers from auto-attacks, dealing significantly more damage while also dealing damage to nearby targets. This plays similar to previous "bite builds" that Feral has had in the past, with a lot of power tied to reacting to Ravage procs. One big downside however is that the AoE range for Ravage Icon Ravage is extremely small, making the loss of additional range even more obvious when playing Feral.

The majority of the tree is very plug-and-play with previous Ferocious Bite Icon Ferocious Bite focused playstyles, with a lot of passive increases to abilities to go alongside the keystone proc. The capstone, Claw Rampage Icon Claw Rampage, massively increases the frequency of Ravage Icon Ravage procs, making a strong cooldown even stronger, giving Feral a very potent 2-minute burst window thanks to the changes to Heart of the Lion Icon Heart of the Lion. Killing Strikes Icon Killing Strikes also provides a guaranteed way to activate procs on pull, which is particularly useful in Mythic+ with frequent combat drops. A unique potential option is Wildpower Surge Icon Wildpower Surge, which encourages infrequently shifting to Bear Form Icon Bear Form for an empowered strike, working particularly well with Fluid Form Icon Fluid Form and reducing some of the opportunity cost of shifting for defensive reasons.

Speaking of defense, there are some solid active tools present on the tree. Fount of Strength Icon Fount of Strength providing maximum health while Frenzied Regeneration Icon Frenzied Regeneration is active, turns it into a small survival cooldown alongside the heal, especially when paired with Empowered Shapeshifting Icon Empowered Shapeshifting, allowing you to cast it in Cat Form Icon Cat Form. Alongside these is Dreadful Wound Icon Dreadful Wound that grants 4% additional damage reduction following a Ravage Icon Ravage cast. For utility, the only real benefit here is Pack's Endurance Icon Pack's Endurance which, while a couple of extra seconds of Stampeding Roar Icon Stampeding Roar is nice, is not much of a game-changer.

Wildstalker focuses on the Bleed portion of Feral's toolkits, hinging off the keystone talent Thriving Growth Icon Thriving Growth that triggers from Rip Icon Rip and Rake Icon Rake damage. These provide an additional damage over time proc that also overlap rather than refresh, allowing for multiples to be active on a target at the same time. The capstone finishes this off with Vigorous Creepers Icon Vigorous Creepers that increases all damage dealt to targets by 6% when a vine is present.

Much of the tree is linked to these growths, most importantly on the third row of each part of the tree. Resilient Flourishing Icon Resilient Flourishing provides some bonus duration and also some redundancy should a target die while affected, while Root Network Icon Root Network amplifies your own damage the more you have spread out , giving a good multi-target node that also provides some benefit in single-target. Bursting Growth Icon Bursting Growth is an AoE conversion tool that causes Bloodseeker Vines to burst on expiration, or allow you to trigger them manually with Ferocious Bite Icon Ferocious Bite instantly. Finally, Twin Sprouts Icon Twin Sprouts adds a chance for each growth to immediately split off and trigger on a second target, while Implant Icon Implant guarantees a trigger whenever you lose the Tiger's Fury Icon Tiger's Fury effect for some more controlled application.

The remainder of the tree is mostly passive bonuses to Feral's toolkit that are very broad, making the tree focused on DoTs but still flexible enough to allow for some customization in the spec tree. The general gameplay leans much more heavily into building up DoT effects on targets, so spreading Rake Icon Rake around in AoE is more of a focus to leverage the additional vine triggers. Adaptive Swarm Icon Adaptive Swarm and potentially also Unbridled Swarm Icon Unbridled Swarm will likely also find even more value here for a more measured, less aggressive playstyle in comparison to Druid of the Claw.

For defense and utility though, Wildstalker is extremely sparse. It provides some additional healing either in the form of healing taken via Bond with Nature Icon Bond with Nature, or personal Regrowth Icon Regrowth casts with Harmonious Constitution Icon Harmonious Constitution. Neither of these are particularly compelling compared to options on the Druid of the Claw tree, which may make this a hard sell especially in Mythic+ situations despite its strong damage output. Utility is even more niche, as a short root from Ursol's Vortex Icon Ursol's Vortex is unlikely to change much nor is some movement speed/small healing from Barkskin Icon Barkskin casts.

4.

Feral Druid Tier Set in The War Within

Below are the Season 1 Tier Set Bonuses for Feral Druid in The War Within. Bear in mind that these are the first passes of bonuses and may change going forward.

  • Druid Feral 11.0 Class Set 2pc Icon Druid Feral 11.0 Class Set 2pcTiger's Fury Icon Tiger's Fury increases your chance to critically strike for 10 sec, starting at 6% and increasing by 1% every 2 sec.
  • Druid Feral 11.0 Class Set 4pc Icon Druid Feral 11.0 Class Set 4pc — Critical strikes with your combo point generating abilities increase the direct damage of your next Ferocious Bite Icon Ferocious Bite and Rampant Ferocity Icon Rampant Ferocity, or Primal Wrath Icon Primal Wrath by 15%, stacking up to 3 times.
4.1.

Feral Druid War Within Set Bonus Impact

The Feral 2-piece leans into the higher focus on the importance of your Tiger's Fury Icon Tiger's Fury windows much like some of the Hero Talents and new spec tree additions. This ramping Crit chance is quite small, but it further compounds the benefits of the window. Considering Hero Talents are a big thing to adjust to, having a bonus that compliments new mechanics without getting in the way is a nice thing to have.

The 4-piece on the other hand is quite strong, but leans quite clearly into Druid of the Claw due to the amount of damage coming directly from abilities getting amplified here. While Wildstalker does still do some damage from these abilities, it is not nearly as much and as such this might cause some problems in terms of how freely you can pick which tree. In terms of gameplay however, this is pretty passive and will simply activate from executing your rotation correctly due to the nature of Combo Points, so should not get in the way of learning the new gameplay loops.

5.

Feral Druid Strengths and Weaknesses

Strengths icon Strengths
  • +Very potent burst on a 2-minute cooldown, especially with Druid of the Claw.
  • +Strong sustained AoE, with good options for burst or rot style damage depending on the situation alongside some uncapped options.
  • +Strong active defensive toolkit that's made even stronger with some additions in Druid of the Claw.
Weaknesses icon Weaknesses
  • -Class changes put additional strain on resources, requiring more precision with Tiger's Fury Icon Tiger's Fury.
  • -The loss of range increasing talents is very tangible considering the amount of time Feral has had access to this.
  • -Defensive options are nowhere near equal between the two hero trees, which may limit flexibility in some high end content.
6.

Changelog

  • 17 Jun. 2024: Page added.
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