Saturday, October 31, 2009

Essential Druid Glyphs

In World of Warcraft, Glyphs are used to customize a player's character by slightly modifying that character's abilities or attributes. Next to talent specialization and itemization, Glyphs are the surest way to adapt your character's capabilities to your play style. For hybrid classes, such as Druids, Glyphs go a long way in defining your characters role, be that healing, tanking, or damage dealing.

Though there is a great deal of flexibility in the Glyphs you choose for your Druid, it is generally accepted that to fill certain roles you ought to have certain Glyphs in place. Below, I will explore these "essential Glyphs" for each of the Druid's main roles as well as providing information on other Glyphs you might use to fill out your character.

Bear Tanking Glyphs


Glyph of Maul - In terms of multi-target threat, this Glyph is 100% necessary. It also helps survivability in that it allows you to quickly spread around your Infected Wounds debuff. No Druid tank should ever be without this Glyph.

Glyph of Frenzied Regeneration - One of these glyphs off of the Auction House... about 9 gold. Adding a 20% boost to ALL healing received for the entire 10 second duration of one of your few panic buttons... priceless!


Glyph of Survival Instincts - An extra 10% of you maximum health for a full 20 seconds whenever you use Survival Instincts certainly can make the difference between life and death, but it probably will not. Assuming you use the skill whenever the cool down is up (which you probably shouldn't be doing), this Glyph increases your effective health by just over 1%.

Glyph of Berserk - An extra 5 seconds of unrestricted Mangles will certainly help your front end threat. This Glyph also slightly buffs Cat Form so it is a good option for those Ferals who haven't committed to a role.

Glyph of Growl - An extra 8% chance for your Growl to hit is hardly worth a Glyph slot, especially considering a decent geared Bear will not hardly miss anyway, but it is an option.

Feral DPS Glyphs


Glyph of Savage Roar - As a good Kitty, you should have Savage Roar up constantly. As a result, this single Glyph will buff all damage you do by 3%. Take this Glyph.


Glyph of Rip - This is a go to Glyph for most Cats. Rip accounts for a great deal of feral damage and bumping its duration by 4 seconds both helps overall dps and smooths out World of Warcraft's most complicated DPS system. If you are on the fence or uncertain as to what you should take, grab this Glyph.

Glyph of Shred - Most Feral DPS will have this Glyph alongside Rip and Savage Roar. An extra six seconds on Rip is a boon to any Cat trying to juggle buffs and debuffs. Obviously this Glyph shines the most on bosses and requires positioning to function, but it is still more than solid for any Feral dps.

Glyph of Berserk - Though it seems great, this Glyph is more for Bears than Cats. Odds are, you will have little to no energy left when you hit those extra 5 seconds making them largely a waste. The Glyphs above are better options for Feral DPS.

Glyph of Mangle - If someone else in your groups handles bleed debuffs, another Feral or an Arms Warrior, obviously stay away from this Glyph. If you need to keep Mangle up, however, this can smooth out your rotation and make your life a little easier. That comfort, however, will generally cost you some of the dps the other Glyphs bring to the table.

Druid Healing Glyphs


Glyph of Swiftmend - Swiftmend is an amazing instant heal, but who wants to blow global cool downs and mana replacing the heal over time spells it eats. As a liberal use panic button, you will want Swiftmend to come with as few strings attached as possible making this a great Glyph.

Glyph of Nourish - If you plan on doing any tank healing, you will be casting Nourish quite a bit and this Glyph is a huge bonus to those heals. If you are an endgame healer, you will want this Glyph.


Glyph of Wild Growth - Unless you do not raid, this Glyph takes up the third slot for most Restoration Druids. It will shine more in 25 man raids than in 10, but is a solid healing boost either way. Take this Glyph unless you have a strong reason to pick up one of the others.

Glyph of Lifebloom - If you are consistently rolling Lifeblooms up to a stack of three, you will see a slight return from this Glyph. Otherwise, certainly stay away.

Glyph of Regrowth - In those situations where this Glyph would be helpful, you should probably be casting Nourish instead. Unless you cast Regrowth more than you should, this Glyph is a waste of a slot.

Glyph of Rejuvenation - Odds are you will not want to rely on Rejuvenation to help out a target below 50% health, meaning the mileage you will get out of this Glyph is likely low.

Glyph of Innervate - If you are often hitting other targets with your Innervate, yet also somehow find yourself having mana problems, you lack judgment and this may be the Glyph for you.

Moonkin Glyphs


Glyph of Starfire - Any experienced Balance Druid knows that Moonfire's damage is really about the damage over time effect. Extending that effect with a spell you cast anyway both boosts your damage output and smooths out your rotation.

Glyph of Insect Swarm - With this Glyph, you can trade in a -3% chance to hit debuff for an extra 30% damage for the spell. That is one deal you do not want to leave on the table.


Glyph of Moonfire - As mentioned before, for sustained damage, Moonfire's initial impact takes a back seat to its DoT. This ability appreciably increases the total damage per Moonfire cast, but you may miss seeing those initial blasts. Take this Glyph if you are concerned about numbers and can stomach the change.

Glyph of Starfall - Being able to bust out this AoE superstar 30 seconds sooner obviously will not hurt, but you will likely get more mileage out of the Glyphs above.

Glyph of Focus - The Glyph provides a noticeable boost to Starfall's damage, but at the cost of having to cozy up to within 15 yards of your targets. If you are set on buffing Starfall, you would be better served to take the Glyph above instead.

These are certainly not all the Druid Glyphs available, only those which will provide you with the most overall benefit in PvE encounters. If you are interested in PvP, the essential Glyphs become less essential and you may want to consider the possibility of working Glyph of Barkskin, Glyph of Monsoon, or Glyph of Entangling Roots into your collection depending on your talents and play style.

As for Minor Glyphs, check out our Druid Minor Glyph Breakdown for advice on what you should take.

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