Druids cast divine spells much the same way clerics do, though most get their spells from the power of nature rather than from deities. Their spells are oriented toward nature and animals. They strive to live in harmony with the natural world, and hate anything that is not part of the natural cycle, especially aberrations and undead creatures. In addition to spells, druids gain an increasing array of magical powers, including the ability to take the shapes of animals, as they advance in level.
- Ex-Druids = a druid who changes to a prohibited alignment keeps all of their abilities but is prevented from gaining levels as a druid until she regains an alignment with a neutral component.
In 3.5, a druid who changes to a prohibited alignment loses all spells and druid abilities (including her animal companion, but not including weapon, armor, and shield proficiencies). She cannot thereafter gain levels as a druid until she regains a neutral alignment.
|Hit die : d8|
|Base Attack Bonus progression :||Medium|
|Saving Throws :|
|High =||Fortitude & Will|
|Weapons:||Druid ~ club, dagger, dart, quarterstaff, scimitar, sickle, sling, and spear).
They are also proficient with all natural attacks (claw, bite, and so forth) of any form they assume with wild shape.
|Armor:||Light, Medium & Shields. (except tower shields)|
|Skill Points : ( 4 + Int modifier ) ×4 at 1st Character level.|
|Class Skills : Concentration, Craft (alchemy), Diplomacy, Heal, Lore, Listen, Parry, Spellcraft, Spot & Survival.|
|1||Animal companion, Nature sense|
|4||Resist nature's lure,|
|5||Wild shape 1/day|
|6||Wild shape 2/day|
|7||Wild shape 3/day|
|10||Wild shape 4/day|
|12||Wild shape 4/day (dire animal shapes); Plant Wildshape (MOTB)|
|14||Wild shape 5/day|
|16||Elemental wild shape 1/day (huge elemental shapes)|
|18||Wild shape 6/day, Elemental wild shape 2/day|
|20||Elemental wild shape 3/day (elder elemental shapes)|
Additional Spell Options
|Level 1 - Foundation of Stone: This spell grants a target immunity to knockdown, but reduces their movement speed.|
|Level 2 - Body of the Sun: The caster’s body emanates fire, burning nearby creatures.|
|Level 3 – Jagged Tooth: This spell grants a targeted animal the Keen property on one of its natural weapons.|
|Level 4 – Moonbolt: This spell creates a bolt of energy that deals strength damage to living creatures and knocks down undead, giving them penalties on attack rolls and saving throws.|
|Level 5 – Rejuvenation Cocoon: The target of this spell becomes encased in a regenerative cocoon, where they are cured from poison and disease and regenerate health.|
|Level 6 – Tortoise Shell: The caster gains a natural armor bonus of +6, plus an additional 1 per every three caster levels to a maximum of +9.|
|Level 7 – Swamp Lung: This spell causes victims to fall prone for 1-6 rounds, during which time they can catch disease.|
|Level 8 – Storm Avatar: This spell infuses the caster with the energy of a storm, making them immune to missiles, hasting them, and adding damage to their attacks|
|Level 9 – Nature’s Avatar: This spell grants a targeted animal a series of very powerful buffs.|
A druid begins the game with an Animal companion. Animal companions are loyal allies in any battle. As your character gains experience, his or her animal companion will also grow in power.
Animal companions cannot be directly controlled by their master. They can be controlled with limited efficiency through vocal commands, and set to defensive or offensive behaviors as well as force them to enter stealth. They become more powerful as the master advances. The only penalty the master suffers from the animal companion's death is that they cannot summon the companion again until they have rested. Animal companions can be named, but cannot be tinted.
Highest level pet comparison
- Epic pets are level 23(25 Deinonychus, 26 Dragons), non-epics are level 13(15 for the Deinonychus, max for a level 20 druid/cleric) in the comparisons.
- Epic Animal Companion was taken at level 29 druid, level 27 when acquiring the Dragon Companion.
- Saving throws are in order of Fortitude, Reflex, and Will.
- Epic animals have all the feats of their earlier form they just don't show up on the character sheet for some animals.
- All vanilla pets only have Hide, and Move Silently skill progression except the Panther, who dumps points into parry/spot/listen crippling its own stealth abilities. It does nothing well as a result.
- Badgers/Spiders(both the same), Bears, Wolves and Boars(in that order) are the stealthiest pets, outperforming the Epic Panther even at non-epic levels.
- Bronze Dragon, Blue Dragon, Deinonychus(in that order) are the most alert, and observant pets. The Dragons in particular have higher detection skills than the other pets have in unbuffed stealth.
- Only Badgers, Bears, Deinonychus, Dragons, and Panthers can be buffed using Flame Weapon.
- Spiders are considered Vermin, but druid pet spells still affect them unlike the Dragon Companion(which can't benefit from pet buffs). Poison DC is 17, unsure if this increases to 24 at epic levels.
- Figure in +6 to all saves versus spells for the Dragon Companion due to Spellcraft.
- Epic Deinonychus are the best combat pets, due to being able to take advantage of the druid pet buffs and regular buffs combined. Ending with 425+30d8hps, 58 AC, 27/31/22 in saves, and a +48/+46/+44/+42/+40 AB using the buff chain below.
- Solid buff chain, cast in the following order at levels 18-30: Owl's Insight, Awaken(Pet Buff), Superior Resistance, Jagged Tooth(Pet Buff), Freedom of Movement(Extend Spell), Tortoise Shell, Greater Magic Fang(Pet Buff), Cat's Grace, Flame Weapon(Extend Spell, where applicable), Nature's Avatar(Pet Buff).
- The Epic Gate(Balor) feat, or an Orglash summoned from the appropriate charm are both great additions alongside an epic pet. Be sure to protect your pet from cold(Orglash), and fire(Balor) damage depending on which one you use. If you use the Orglash, be sure to cast Energy Immunity(Fire) on it due to its 50% fire vulnerability.
A druid gains a +2 bonus to Survival and a +2 bonus to Search and Spot while in wilderness areas.
Starting at 2nd level, a druid gains a +10% movement increase when in outdoor, natural environments.
At 3rd level, a druid gains a +4 competence bonus to Hide and Move Silently checks when in wilderness areas.
Resist Nature's Lure
Starting at 4th level, a druid gains a +2 bonus on saving throws against all Fear spells and effects.
- At 5th level, a druid gains the ability to turn himself into an animal and back again once per day. A druid can use this ability more times per day at 6th, 7th, 10th, 14th, 18th, 22nd, 26th and 30th level. The forms available to him are bear, boar, wolf, or badger.
- At 12th level, a druid gains the ability to turn himself into a dire animal. The dire form replaces the current animals with dire bear, dire boar, dire wolf, or dire badger.
More details about this ability can be found on the Wild Shape description page.
Plant Shape (MOTB)
At 12th level, a druid is able to wild shape into a plant creature - a shambling mound or a treant. Using this ability counts against his normal uses of wild shape.
More details about this ability can be found on the Plant Shape description page.
- At 16th level, a druid becomes able to use wild shape to change into a huge elemental (air, earth, fire, or water) once per day. These elemental forms are in addition to his normal wild shape usage. In addition to the normal effects of wild shape, the druid gains all the elemental's immunities, extraordinary, supernatural, and spell-like abilities. At 18th level, a druid becomes able to assume elemental form twice per day, and at 20th level he can do so three times per day.
- At 20th level, a druid gains the ability to turn himself into an elder elemental. The elder form replaces the current elementals with elder air elemental, elder earth elemental, elder fire elemental and elder water elemental.
More details about this ability can be found on the Elemental Wild Shape description page.
At 9th level, a druid gains immunity to all poisons.
A druid casts divine spells, which are drawn from the druid spell list.
To prepare or cast a spell, the druid must have a Wisdom score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a druid's spell is 10 + the spell level + the druid's Wisdom modifier.
A druid can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if he has a high Wisdom score.
A druid may prepare and cast any spell on the druid spell list, provided that he can cast spells of that level, but he must choose which spells to prepare before resting.
Special Feats Notes
Druid specific feats
There are a number of feats specifically designed to be used with the Druid class. The following list covers these feats for convenience.
- Extra Wild Shape: +2 Wild Shape uses/day. Up to +1 Elemental Shape use/day.
- Not very useful if you have Natural spell which lets you cast spells in when shifted.
- It can however prove useful to players who want to take advantage of Elephant's hide or Oaken resilience multiple times.
- Does not count towards minimum Wild Shape requirements for feats like Magical Beast Wild Shape and Dragon Shape.
- Elephant's Hide: You can spend one of your wild shapes for the day to give yourself a natural armor bonus of +7 for 10 minutes
- It only provides +2 AC higher than Barkskin or Spiderskin at their highest levels and they do not stack together.
- Useful if someone needs to free up the spell slots for Barkskin or Spiderskin.
- Also has these advantages over Barkskin and Spiderskin: it is "cast" instantaneously and is not dispellable.
- Cannot be used while shifted. Short duration.
- Natural Spell: Can cast divine/arcane(multiclass) spells while in Wild Shape.
- A must-have ability for any druid who wants to take full advantage of Wild Shapes.
- Allows a shifted Druid to cast Magic fang and Greater magic fang on himself.
- As of v1.12, the Druid does not benefit from casting Nature's Avatar on himself in Wild Shape, severely limiting the usefulness of Wild Shapes. As of v1.23, the Druid can cast Nature's Avatar on himself in the normal animal forms (e.g. Bear).
- It does NOT permit a Druid to cast Epic spells while in Wild Shape (v1.12 - 1.23)
- Oaken Resilience: Can spend Wild Shape use to be immune to poison, sleep, and critical hits.
- Fantastic ability for the critical hit/sneak immunity alone.
- Cannot be used while shifted, but can prior to shifting. Short duration.
- Magical Beast Wild Shape(Epic): Use one wild shape use to transform into a celestial leopard, phase spider, or winter wolf.
- Dragon Shape(Epic): The character may use wild shape to change into a dragon.
- Dragon Companion(Epic): The Druid can summon a small blue dragon or bronze dragon as a companion.
- Epic Animal Companion (Epic)
- Your animal companion's abilities are determined as if you had three additional levels.
- See Pet Comparison.
Feats from other classes
All Automatic, and Activation(if activated before shifting) class feats should carry over to the Druid whether he is shifted into an animal, elemental or other form. There should be no restrictions unless where specifically noted, and this should open up many more combat possibilities and build styles for the player. The following list are some examples of how to use them to your greatest advantage.
- Flurry of blows: This first level Monk feat can be used in conjunction with your Wild shape attacks providing +1 attack per round with the penalties listed.
- Greater flurry: This eleventh level Monk feat is an upgrade to Flurry of blows providing two additional attacks per round instead one.
- Monk AC Bonus(Wisdom): This first level Monk ability allows the player to add his Wisdom bonus(if any) to his AC when unarmored or using his Wild shape ability.
- The player also gains a +1 bonus to AC at 5th level Monk which increases by another +1 every 5 Monk levels.
- He loses these bonuses when he is immobilized or helpless, when he wears any armor, or when he carries a shield.
- Still useful in online play, where armored monks do not receive higher AC when shifted.
- Sneak attack: All sneak attack bonus damage works normally when a Druid is shifted.
- Barbarian Rage does work in creature form if activated before Wild Shape.
- Frenzied Berserker Frenzy does work in creature form if activated before Wild Shape.
Other combat feats
Some other Combat Feats should function normally whether the Druid is using his Wild shape ability or not. Passive feats that you don't have to pick from your hotbar are best. For example, a player with Great cleave, Circle kick or Improved parry will get full benefits from this feat while attacking in Bear form. However, the same does NOT hold true for feats such as Knockdown, Stunning Fist, Whirlwind attack, Expose Weakness and so on...
- As a general rule, Activation type feats(knockdown, expose weakness) are best avoided if you intend to spend your time in wild shape, because changing form prevents you from using most activated abilities(with the exception of spells if you have the Natural Spell feat).
- On the other hand, modes like Greater Flurry, Track, Darkvision and Power Attack should work normally.
- This is a major departure from NWN1, where knockdown and stunning fist were exceptionally valuable for a shapeshifted druid.
Important Wild Shape and Character Creation Notes
Druids intending to spend most of their time in a Wild Shape form (be it animal, plant, elemental, etc) should take note of a few important features of this feat when crafting and leveling their character. Even players who will spend only limited time shapeshifted would do well to become familiar with some of the less obvious caveats and benefits of creature forms.
- The druid's mental ability scores(Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma) transfer to the creature form. Wisdom will be especially important for spellcasting whether in or out of creature form. Players who intend to learn the Natural Spell feat for casting spells in creature form should also make sure their wisdom score is high enough (19 for 9th level spells), as their animal forms will not increase their wisdom.
- Be careful about relying on items to increase wisdom(see equipment/spellcasting).
- As mentioned in the Feats from other classes section above, the Monk wisdom AC Bonus also applies while shapeshifted, further increasing the significance of this stat for players who choose to take any monk levels (especially for creatures with low dexterity and base AC, like the Treant).
- However, full base armor transfer can be achieved in the single player campaign as of 1.22/1.23, making one level of Monk obsolete as you can potentially gain more AC from armor while shifted (see Druid Equipment below).
- The druid's physical ability scores (Strength, Dexterity, and Constitution) are completely ignored, and replaced by the new form's physical abilities. See the entries for Wild Shape, Plant Shape, Elemental Wild Shape, Magical Beast Wild Shape, and Dragon Shape for the specific amounts. These new physical abilities affect skills properly, such as additional stealth, tumble, concentration, etc.
- Racial ability bonuses, and penalties do not apply when shifted. This means you will not receive your bonuses or penalties to strength, dexterity, etc while shifted.
- Svirfneblin do however retain their natural spell resistance when using wild shape, this is due to the fact it is classified as an Automatic feat and all such feats are typically carried to the new form. I have not tested Drow/Yuan-ti Pureblood spell resistance, but both races use seperately numbered feats which may make this ability exclusive to Svirfneblin if it's a bug.
- Because mental ability scores transfer and physical ones are replaced, the physical abilities can be lower for a wild shape focused druid, or could even be used as dump stats. However, it should be noted that Strength may be important for any druid intending to carry items without being encumbered outside of her creature forms, and Dexterity and Constitution are important defense stats if she gets attacked before she can change forms.
- Every time a conversation or part of the plot comes up (tested in MOTB and the original campaign) the player is taken out of wild shape and may have very little time to shapeshift again before being attacked. Players should take into consideration how often they will be in druid form when they choose these stats, as they could be killed or inconvenienced by placing too few points into them. On the other hand, neglecting these stats makes reaching high wisdom levels easy for the purpose of obtaining epic feats with high requirements, milking the monk AC bonus for all it's worth, etc.
- In the single player campaigns, resting is more challenging when in dungeons and other dangerous areas, since you can get attacked during the rest.
- Equipped items have a limited influence when shapeshifted, only the Chestpiece, Helmet, and Shield enchantments or base ac will carry to the new form. In this new form any Activated bonus abilities(that do not appear on the mode bar), or spells granted by the three items will not function due to the hotbar issues with shifted druids. Max Dex Bonus on armor is ignored when shifted, due to forms having set AC.
- In other words, when shapeshifted the different forms of AC such as deflection and armor do not stack. Thus a helmet that gave +2 armor(deflection bonus) and chainmail +3(armor bonus) will result in only 8 AC in creature form (5 from chainmail plus highest AC bonus of 3), even though they give +10 AC in druid form.
- There is no transfer of base armor rating when shifted and playing online, however full base armor transfer is available in the single player game. Mithral Full Plate(8 base ac) + Adamantine Heavy Shield(2 base ac) = +10 ac while shifted before magical enchantment bonuses, making armored shifters in single player far more effective than monk/druid wisdom AC builds(+10 base ac, +5-8 armor enchantment = 15/16/17/18 AC, equivalent to 40/42/44/46 wisdom). Monk/Druids still have the upper hand outside of wild shape however in terms of AC.
- Nor do multiple instances of ability enhancements stack (which is normal in NWN2 -- two items that both give Strength +3 will result in Strength +3, not Strength +6). Presumably, skill bonuses(such as Parry +5, Tumble +10) and saving throw bonuses follow these same stacking rules in wildshape(not tested yet).
- Druids who use wildshape will frequently feel the impact of these special restrictions and would do well to buy/craft equipment with this in mind.
- Other equipment items, such as amulets, bracers, belts, boots, weapons, and capes are ignored completely by NWN2's wild shape. For players who intend to spend all their time in wildshape form, there is probably little or no need to craft or buy these items for themselves.
- Periapt of Wisdom +4/6/8 are worth buying. Wearing this item and casting Owl's Insight(Level 12 required for +6, 16 for +8) or Owl's Wisdom prior to shapeshifting will allow you to carry the bonus spells to the new form. If they are dispelled while shifted however, you will lose those bonus spells from your spellbook until you return to human form, and rest.
- However, given that the game will frequently force a player to change to human form during the storyline, it may be a good idea to buy items to boost stats like AC and Constitution just in case the player is pulled into combat in druid form.
- Spells and effects which increase AC and ability scores(such as Bull's Strength) should function normally, and should remain on a druid even as she changes to or from creature forms. The wild shape stacking limitations applied to equipment do not appear to affect spells.
- The "Creature Weapon" that wild shape forms use rather than unarmed strike cause special problems for the Sacred Fist class, because having creature weapon isn't the same as not equipping a weapon. Thus druids with levels in this class that wildshape will take a -8 attack penalty for using a "weapon". Similarly, medium sized forms will not benefit from Weapon Finesse due to the creature weapon not being the appropriate size classification.
- If a merchant allows you to buy from him/her while in creature form, you will be able to see and access your inventory for the purposes of buying, but you cannot sell anything. You will also not be able to use any items in your inventory in any way (everything is colored red as though you were a class that cannot use the item, because technically as a creature you are a different class). You cannot change your equipment either. Right-clicking on an item like a Ring of Invisibility will give you all its options, including the option to cast invisibility, but choosing any of these options besides examine will be fruitless (game says "You cannot use this item").
Spell and Feat Limitations
- Your quickbar is disabled when shapeshifted. Any action classified as Activation that doesn't appear on the mode bar, including Epic Spells, wild shape racial abilities (Pulses, and the like), character racial abilities (unless cast from right-clicking yourself or an enemy), and the druid's own Oaken Resilience/Elephant's Hide feats do not function while shifted.
- Druids cannot naturally cast spells in creature form, and they need to learn the Natural Spell feat to overcome this. For a character who has a wisdom score of at least 13, this becomes available as soon as she gains wild shape. This is an important feat, as it allows the wild-shaped druid to use attack spells on enemies, support spells on allies, and even creature boosting spells on herself (including Magic Fang, Greater Magic Fang, and Nature's Avatar).
- Correction on previous info: Natural Spell allows any form of spellcasting, including spells from other divine classes (Cleric, Spirit shaman) and even arcane spells (Wizard, Bard, Sorcerer) to be cast while shifted.
- However, you still must have enough Intelligence/Charisma to cast the arcane spells, and characters relying on items to boost their attributes may not have enough after they change form (if the item is not one that takes effect in creature form, such as a helmet). Note that spells like Eagle's Splendor/Fox's Cunning should stay in place while you change form, so if an item bonus disappears but a spell's bonus keeps your charisma high enough, you will still be able to cast. Thus a combination of item and spell boosts can overcome this limitation(though you may lose some prepared spells due to the drop in your main casting stat, which wreaks havoc on a wizard's spell book. You'll have to re-prepare your spells all over again frequently).
- These same problems apply to using items to boost a low wisdom.
- Natural Spell and some other druid abilities usually only affect forms obtained through wild shape and other druid abilities. If a druid casts Shapechange (9th-level druid spell), it is not the same as using wild shape and she will not be able to cast spells in this form, even with Natural Spell.
- Bard songs and inspirations do not work when wildshaped.
As with feats, Wild Shape disables or limits the usefulness of some skills. Here is a list of tested skills:
- Works Properly
- Works Partially
- Appraise -- In situations where you can speak to shop keepers and buy from them, appraise works fine.
- Use magic device -- While you cannot access your inventory or quickbar to use magical items (such as wands), you can still equip helmets, armor and shields as a druid to gain part of their benefits once you use wild shape.
- Does Not Work
- Craft alchemy, Craft armor, Craft trap, Craft weapon -- No access to your inventory or quickbar, even to use the Smith Hammer or Mortar and Pestle.
- Set trap
- Sleight of hand
- Taunt - You're taken out of wild shape for conversations, and the option to taunt enemies is not available through the quickbar when shapeshifted.
- Perform - Bard's songs inspirations are not available in animal form.
- Lore - You cannot access your inventory, but lore checks do happen automatically as you pick up items.
Size and Movement
- Wild Shape can change a character's size as well. For example, a Dire Bear is considered large, while a badger is considered small or tiny(exact size isn't mentioned in documentation). This makes it especially unfortunate that Knockdown is not available in creature form, as some large creatures would receive very nice size bonuses against most enemies.
- Besides affecting AC and defense against Knockdown(among other effects), size can also affect a creature's ability to move. A Treant, for example, takes up a huge amount of space and is unable to move through some areas of the game. Shapeshifting into a treant can sometimes get the character stuck in small areas, if part of the druid's newly sized form is now overlapping with something, forcing her to change back to druid and move to a more wide-open area. These caveats are very important to consider before changing form, especially during combat.
- Some feats, such as Weapon Finesse will also be useless due to the increased size of the creature weapon.
- Base armor class on chestpieces, and shields do not transfer properly when shifting making monk/druid superior for online builds.
- Racial ability bonuses(Svirfneblin/Gray Orc Confirmed) to strength, dexterity, constitution, intelligence, wisdom, and charisma are taken away while shifted causing you to lose bonus spells unless you have cast Owl's Insight/Owl's Wisdom prior to shifting. This is merely a workaround for losing spells, you still lose -1 AC, DC, and Will Saves. Particularly devastating with races that have Light Sensitivity, or Light Blindness applied as well, since those feats are bugged and function day or night in any exterior area, and some interior areas.
- Epic Deinonychus(Dinosaur Companion) only achieve level 23 online, rather than level 25(such as they do in the campaigns).
Amusing Graphical Glitches
Magical beast shape glitches, and dragon shape glitches require you to shrink a regular animal cancel the wild shape and then take on the new shape.
- Dire Bear: Becomes much smaller than it should, teddy bear form is cute and deadly.
- Celestial Leopard: Becomes the size of a large house cat.
- Dragon: If it doesn't crash your game, your dragon will flip upside down and walk on the underside of the walkmesh instead of on top of it. The dragon shape will not change size, and all you will typically see are its feet and tail occasionally breaking through the ground.
- Dragon(Enlarge): Casting Enlarge on yourself prior to shapeshifting will cause the Dragon Form to be much larger.
- The animal empathy class skill has been dropped in NWN2, however it still comes up in encounter dialog with wild beasts when moving on the overland map of Storm of Zehir. The SoZ campaign also erroneously checks for the Wild Empathy feat here and there, which is a cut feature originally reserved for druid/ranger classes.
- Active abilities from your character such as Knockdown do not work while shapeshifted (possibly because you do not keep the feat when you change forms, in the same way that you do not keep your strength attribute, because they are replaced by the animal form's physical attributes and feats). In NWN1 these feats were fully usable while in animal form.
- Plant Shape was not available in NWN1 and was added in MOTB.
- As of patch 1.12, feats which affect Unarmed Strike (most notably including Weapon Specialization, Weapon Focus, and Improved Critical) no longer have any effect at all on wildshape forms. This is because creatures now use Creature Weapons instead of normal unarmed attacks, and feats affecting one do not appear to affect the other. There is no option to choose Creature Weapons as the weapon of choice for these feats. This severely reduces the effectiveness of some Monk-Druid and Fighter-Druid builds. In NWN1 and early NWN2 versions, creatures used unarmed strike and benefited from these feats.
3.5 Rules Comparison
- The wild empathy and thousand faces feats are not implemented in NWN2, although wild empathy may be implemented in future patches.
- Nature sense, trackless step and resist nature's lure are altered slightly to suit game mechanics better.
- The parry skill was created by NWN and is not a feature of DnD 3.5. It has returned in NWN2 for the same reasons it was in NWN.
- The swim, handle animal, profession and ride skills are not implemented in NWN2, while NWN's lore is used instead of knowledge skills.
- NWN2 does not use languages or aging. The timeless body and bonus languages class features are not implemented.
- DnD 3.5 places restrictions on divine spellcasting with regard to spells of certain alignments that may oppose a druid's deity's alignment. In addition, druids in 3.5 lose their divine capabilities if they wear metal armours/shields or use weapons outside of their spiritual oaths. NWN2 doesn't officially implement either of these restrictions, although they are not hard for a player to roleplay if desired.