Bear is the most lackluster spec at the moment

Hey, Im a returning player, that came back after stopping at the end of legion (post Argus Cutting Edge), and I wanted to ask, is it me or are guardian druid the most under developed tank class, since legion when the new mechanics behind bears were implemented the class has further devolved. But here are some of the things that made me say this:

  1. Druid talents - this is one of the biggest issues, I have, compare to other classes that have talents that allow them to develop more and more, the druid class tree is packed with things that were removed from core and there is nothing special, I understand that we have options to play 4 specs, but that should only mean that the tree must be much wider and a lot more options, honestly it feels so gutted compared to DH or Paladin for example. Also what is with the last role talents, especially “Protector of the pack”, they are so unbelievably bad and can you stop forcing the druid tank to constantly switch between forms, it is not how people like to play and with the evolving tanking mechanics in raids even there it is not working.
  2. Gameplay - I don’t see and progression, in fact some of the elements that were enjoyable are now locked under the GCD, how is this possible, I feel that no one has done any play testing in high keys.
  3. Survivability and viability - I’m a bit confused how to explain this point, as I think a big part of the issue is the reliance on Iron Fur and the limited survivability without it. So let me explain - bear without Iron Fur in high keys, before sufficient rage is generated for example, will take millions of dmg.

Also the class still has no way to deal with magic dmg. I understand that there are meta picks and so one, but I honestly can’t understand the game balance that exists at the moment around the different tanks - I go and do +28 on my DH and he feels like an immortal, that can stay in a single spot tank 20000 mobs and survive without issues due to 50% dodge + 50% parry. I can do similar with the pala, requires a bit more planning and CDs, but it works out easily, but I can’t even get invited to keys past 23 with the bear and even people I know are constantly complaining about me wanting to tank with my bear.

I know this is ranty, but I’m actually interested to hear what you think, Ive only been playing for the past 2 months, so maybe I’m missing out on something, but honestly the more I play with other tanks the least and the thing that feels most off are the talents, even people that I know and have been playing non-stop and saying only negative things about the druid talents. I’m going over and leveling all my tanks at the moment, was told that warriors are also in a bad spot at the moment, but I will be able to check once I level them up.

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At the other hand bears where gods in S2 because of their tier set, and dungeons with less magic dmg. That beings said every class has their strengts and weakness noone will have the whole package.

I fully agree with that mate, all classes should have their uses and this is the correct way to run the game. But I have been going over this with few of my friend from my guild before I left the game, why for example do you have to spend a talent point to get “Iron Fur”, which is 100% required to even play a tank, this is like asking paladins and warriors to spend a talent point on “Equip shield”.

And why are the other specs hard lock into selecting the talent, to go down the tree. Other classes have similar issue, but never as bad as the druids, after 5 points into your chosen spec, you are hard locked into putting 2 points to advance. I even checked with folks I know, some of them are in the top boomies doing 29-30 runs, even they are unhappy about the talen trees.

And the main point of the issue remains, the class that should have the most diversity and versitility in terms of choices, is the one that is so bare bones just to fit core abilities into talents. I feel absolutely that this is lack of creativity, I’m sure that every single druid on the forums can probably give 100 ways to improve the talent tree that are more enjoyable or creative.

I hope that a Dev, can give some feedback on this - as I returning player, I would like to see their train of though.

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U are right, matter a fact, an interrupt should be baseline, a cleanse spell should be baseline, a cc spell should be baseline. I mean they are mandatory in dungeons/Pvp it should never be a talent point.

Very similar issues with ferals, the talent trees are terribly thought out. I can’t help but get the feeling that they really don’t like druids and if they could, they’d simply delete them from the game. Had to sit back and watch over all these years how they have just decimated the original druids to split them into 4 specs yet somehow want us to choose talents for specs that are completely irrelevant to us. Why on earth would I as a feral or Guardian, want to pick things like Moonkin form and moonkin abilities, just in order to get some talents that ARE useful to my chosen spec, it’s literally bonkers. The last few rounds of class tuning also feels like a bit of a kick in the nuts as well, undo the Regrowth nerf so that Regrowth is ever so slightly less terrible than it was then make Frenzied rejuv slightly less terrible than it was. Slightly less terrible in PVP atm still equals terrible.

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I agree with you, this is not a bear issue, but a class problem overall. However I took bear as a reference point, as I haven’t had a chance to spend time with the other specs that much, as I main tanks across the board.

But I was told the same from other druids as well, I can’t understand why there is so little creativity behind the talent tree. My ex-guild mates said that this is on-going issue and the shadowland skills were also not what anyone expected for druid.

The worst of all from what I have seen even the new hero talents for druid are the absolute void of creativity, for reference:

Everything About Hero Talents in The War Within - Wowhead

More moonfire spam… really, really? For a hero passive talents, you couldn’t come up with anything more creative??

Here are just few ideas from the top of my head (note as much as Blizz said those will be only passive skills):

  1. Armor forms - with the final passive allowing the druid to wear mail, would be new, creative as there is no mail wearing tank, can have some new interesting forms, can work with feral for example

  2. Reflective druid ( evolution of brambles) - the idea to use nature and thorns/splinters to make the enemies not willing to attack you or they will pay, can work with resto druid

  3. Elemental Druid - we already have seen flame druids for multiple expansions, push this fantasy forward, going fully involved into the natural elements as a druid

  4. Chimera or Monstrous form - with the idea that with the experience, we have learned how to more deeply understand the power of shapeshifting. This can be amazing, and it can lead to some cool lore connections, we have seen druids having spider form previously for example. We also have warebares, but sadly that did not change anything gamewise, so this time you can actually expand and go crazy with this. This can laterally fit into any specialization for the class, even healer - how cool it can be to see a tree snake form for examples.

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The Druid tree is the biggest disappointment of the xpac… somehow it gutted all 4 specs because every spec needs to waste many useless talents to get something that was baseline xpacs ago…

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So it is not just me, post people I speak appear to say the same thing.

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Damn, I love moonfire spam and triggering lasers all around me from above.

That said, that is expected when you go for Elune’s chosen one since it’s a combination of Balance and Guardian. I’d reckon Guardian/Feral and Guardian/Restoration to focus on other things.

These ‘hero talents’ are supposed to augmentation rather than vital game changers.

Also those forms you describe sound interesting, but completely impossible from a balancing perspective, Druids would become 7 classes in one. Objectively, Druids are already by far the most played class because they can basically do anything already.

I’d say that has a future of cosmetics only.

Use rage of the sleeper on pull to cover the lack of initial ironfur (it also works well with setting up our tier set bonus). If you don’t have that then use Barkskin - the cool-down is very short now for bears with the right talents.

Bears do have a lot of self healing options now with frenzied regen and regrowth. Remember with incarnation frenzied regen has no cool-down.

If you’re looking for builds online, my advice would be to go more defensive to begin with and then switch out some defensive talents for more offensive ones as you get more geared/comfortable. A lot of the high end specs on Subcreation really trade off as much survivability for damage as they can, because they’re trying to time super high keys. For normal M+ dungeons (which I mean anything from +2 to +20), then you don’t have to be so worried about dps as the tank and can focus more on surviving. More dps always helps - but at those key levels 3 good dps will always bring enough. So it’s ok to be cautious with your builds. You definitely don’t want to be dying, as that is the one thing tanks can control that will definitely break a key.

All you said is actually true, I still hope they are more creative, but you make a valid point. And thinking about it I understand why they decided that common thing are the moonfires.

As for the ideas, they are just me giving examples. I haven’t spent the time thinking about balance, I fully agree that the mail example would be unmanageable in terms of balancing, but the goal was to provide few creative ideas.

Overall the goal is for me to understand, why as a returning player druid feels like the most left out class, and specifically bears, and it is not only me other people are saying the same thing. When I see how much paladin tank has improved from the past, it is a really amazing, why are bears left out.

Yep. The moment you ran out of cooldowns and/or rage you are dead meat unless your dodge RNG kicks in. The set bonus is a weak af too, a real pity, I like Bear tank.

just see at the DoC talent…

so, use iron fur or any save ability…

magic dmg is the problem of any tank spec.

dodge and parry are for physical dmg.
bear is one of best tank specs against physical dmg.

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Bear is fine in my opinion. I have achieved KSH and it wasn’t that hard.

But the general Druid talent tree is painful. It doesn’t feel good spending 7-8 points into things you will never use.

With Guardian Druid, you have to fundamentally enjoy running around as a big fat bear. You cannot force the aesthetic feel of it.

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