Druid - Boon Support Healer

The community gave this build a rating, making it second-tier: Good

Focused on: HealingBoon support and Utility

Designed for: Raids

Overview

Healing Druid is a support build that provides spirit buffs to 10 players, most importantly and . It also provides its 5-player subgroup with 25 stacks of Might Might from , , healing, permanent Fury Fury and Regeneration Regeneration. It can inflict good amounts of CC, high Vulnerability Vulnerability, and tons of utility from various pets and utility skills.

As a downside, druid is one of the very few supports that don't provide neither of the essential Quickness Quickness nor Alacrity Alacrity boons.


Skill Bar

Fanged Iboga
Electric Wyvern
Axe/Warhorn
Staff
Utility


Weapon Variants

  • Longbow provides , a short cooldown and easily accessible knockback. On bosses where pushing or CC is important, you should swap out Staff and use to help your squad.
  • Offhand axe can replace Staff for more DPS if you don't need the defensive utility. It also provides for pulling adds on certain encounters.


Pets

You will mainly be bringing these pets to fights:

  • Fanged Iboga Fanged Iboga is the highest DPS pet, which also inflicts good CC with its pet skill . This is the pet you will have out most of the time.
  • Electric Wyvern Electric Wyvern and Rock Gazelle Rock Gazelle deal mediocre DPS but provides very strong CC from their pet skills, and . You should have one of these as your secondary pet and swap to it if CC is needed.
  • Jacaranda Jacaranda is the second highest DPS pet and the pet with the highest cleave damage. It also has an immobilize in , useful if more soft CC is needed.

In certain situations, you might also find these pets useful:

  • Red Moa Red Moa provides Fury Fury with its pet skill , useful if you're struggling with fury uptime.
  • Jungle Stalker Jungle Stalker provides Might Might with its pet skill , useful if you're struggling with might uptime.
  • Wolf Wolf provides AoE fear, useful if your group is having trouble with adds (e.g. on Escort towers).
  • Brown Bear Brown Bear provides for extremely condition-heavy fights.
  • Fern Hound Fern Hound provides Regeneration Regeneration if you have difficulty keeping it up.


Spirits

Spirits are unique Ranger summons that buff 10 players in a large radius around them. As they can affect an entire raid squad they are extremely powerful and almost all of them provide great benefits to a raid comp.

  • provides Might Might and a 5% increase to your squad's power DPS.
  • provides Vigor Vigor and a ~5% increase to your squad's condition DPS.
  • provides Regeneration Regeneration and sustained healing to 10 people in a huge radius. This keeps them from dying, sustains their bonus, and rapidly fills your .
  • provides Stability Stability and an emergency resurrect that can affect up to 10 people, including yourself.
  • provides Protection Protection, which again keeps your squadmates from dying and sustains their bonus.

Most raid commanders will expect a and in their squad. You will generally want to take for your generation. Depending on the fight, many commanders will also expect and .

Coordinating spirits: If there's another Ranger in the squad, you should coordinate spirits with them before the fight so that you cover all spirits between the two of you. This is usually done by pinging the spirits on your skillbar in chat. If you're the only Ranger then filling your skillbar with spirits is usually a safe choice.

When not to bring spirits: On many encounters, Druid is expected to bring utility skills to deal with mechanics, for example for knockbacks or for a stun break. In these situations, you will not be able to bring every spirit as a solo Druid and will need to replace one of your spirits. Alternatively, you may realize that some of your spirits aren't doing anything and wish to replace them with other utility skills like .

You can swap out in groups that don't need help surviving, in groups that mainly deal power damage, or in groups that mainly deal condition damage.


Other Skill Variants

Healing Skills

  • is a good alternative to on condition-heavy fights (e.g. Slothasor, Xera). If you take this run .
  • if is already covered.

Utility Skills

  • provides a short cooldown AoE knockback and is the cornerstone of many raid boss strategies.
  • provides instant vulnerability and 300 breakbar damage, useful on bosses like Samarog where CC is important.
  • provides an AoE stun break, useful for saving your subgroup on bosses like Slothasor.
  • is a strong safety net for inexperienced groups.
  • or if you don't need anything else.

Elite Skills

  • on fights where the immobilize is needed.
  • if you need more healing and don't need or .


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Specializations


Specialization Variants

  • if running .
  • if you don't need the safety buffer of .
  • to increase your DPS a tiny bit in experienced groups on low pressure encounters.
  • to carry inexperienced groups that are going down a lot.
  • in fights with boon corruption where the Stability Stability from might be corrupted into Fear Fear.
  • if you are using a heal skill other than . does not trigger , limiting its usefulness.
  • or is technically better when not running any glyphs, but they don't provide any real advantage so you don't have to retrait if you're lazy.
  • if there is already another Druid with . This will change your role from providing might to spamming massive heals on the group.


Marksmanship Pushing Variant

On some specific bosses, you will need to use to push and can't afford to have the projectile be intercepted. In this case replace Skirmishing with Marksmanship so that you can take . will also provide increased CC from skills such as and .


Wilderness Survival Kiting Variant

If you're far off on your own kiting a mechanic and aren't able to grant to your DPS, you can run Wilderness Survival instead of Skirmishing for more personal survivability. You can also consider traiting in Druid.


Equipment

Head
Harrier
Shoulders
Harrier
Chest
Harrier
Hands
Harrier
Legs
Harrier
Feet
Magi
Backpiece
Magi
Accessory
Harrier
Accessory
Harrier
Amulet
Harrier
Ring
Harrier
Ring
Magi
Axe
Harrier
Warhorn
Harrier
Sigil
Sigil
Staff
Harrier
Sigil
Sigil
Rune
x6



Equipment Notes

  • Remember to also get a longbow with the same sigils as your staff.
  • The gear above is designed to cap boon duration when using +100 concentration food. If you are not using such food, you can switch some of the magi pieces to harrier.
  • Thanks to , cleric stats would provide more healing power than magi, but this will put you at 1159 toughness which may interfere with tanking.


Consumables

Food

Utility


Usage

As a Druid you wear many hats in a raid encounter. This is your priority during fights, from highest to lowest:

  1. Stay alive
  2. Do mechanics
  3. Rescue teammates low on health
  4. Maintain boons and healing on your squad
  5. Maximize your DPS


Boons

Your main job for most of the fight is maintaining 25 stacks of Might Might on your squad. As a Druid you are uniquely equipped to do this with . At the start of the fight, and any time is available, you should go into and do the following might sharing rotation:

  • while standing in your squad
  • If done right the will explode shortly afterwards, healing teammates and granting you astral force for your next .

In addition to spamming you will want to spam on your warhorn. This will top off your subgroup's Might Might and Regeneration Regeneration, and grant Fury Fury to your Chronomancer who can then sustain it with . You can if you have trouble with boon uptime (see "Quick Draw" below).

Combined with the passive pulsing might from , you should have no trouble maintaining 25 might on your squad.


Healing

Healing is the secondary role you provide to your raid squad. Many new Druid players focus excessively on healing their teammates and camp Staff for the whole encounter. In reality, you don't need to do this as Regeneration Regeneration and your rotation are enough to take care of random damage and keep people topped off. You only need to swap to Staff if you need emergency healing or utility.
Healing becomes important when mistakes or mechanics cause your teammates to get dangerously low on health. As a support healer, it's your responsibility to keep them alive, top them off, and maintain their bonus. You can provide burst healing in any of the following ways:
  • Go into and spam and
  • Activate or
  • Drop a water field on your allies with or , and then blast it with or
A combination of these should be sufficient to heal your team back up to full. Make sure to turn on "Thick Party Health Bars" in your options so that you can see who needs healing at a glance.
If your teammates still go down after you babysit them and drop all your healing on them, that's on them, not you. Make a judgment call on whether it's worth putting yourself in danger to revive them, or popping your to give them a second chance.

Quick Draw

is a very useful trait that provides a safety buffer for both your boons and healing. Every 9 seconds, this trait will activate after you Weapon swap Weapon swap or enter/leave , and it will reduce the cooldown of the next skill you use that has a cooldown. This is usually going to be or . This extra buffer is great for new Druids or for chaotic fights where you can't keep up a regular rotation.

has a 9 second cooldown, so get a feel for the timing or keep an eye on your skill bar to see if is active. It's better to autoattack for a few seconds rather than accidentally waste on inconsequential skills.

also won't trigger if you are in the middle of a skill cast when you , so remember to finish your cast animations.


Mechanics

As a utility support class, Druid is often called upon to do specific raid mechanics. These are varied and highly encounter dependent. Ask your commander what they want you to do in any given fight.

  • Entangling: On many bosses, Druids are asked to bring to immobilize or clear adds. An example is on Gorseval where you have to keep 4 spirits from reaching the center. Generally this boils down to pressing when your commander tells you to.
  • Pushing: Druids have 2 reliable knockbacks in and , which means they usually have the responsibility of handling knockbacks ("pushes"). An example is on Soulless Horror where you will be asked to push Tormented Dead far away from the main group. If asked to do this, position carefully and have your pushing skills ready when the time comes.
    • If there is a risk of your getting intercepted then you should run the "Marksmanship Pushing Variant" traits listed above.
  • Kiting: As Druids can heal and support from range, they are sometimes asked to stand apart from the main grop to keep a specific mechanic away. An example is on Sabetha where you may be asked to stand further away to kite flak. In these scenarios, you should run as many spirits as possible, drop them all on your group at the beginning, then go to your kiting spot and stay there while dropping heals on the main group. You won't be expected to maintain might (although it's obviously a nice bonus if you can).
    • If you're so far away that you're out of range, consider running the "Wilderness Survival Kiting Variant" traits listed above.
  • Healing Through: Some advanced strategies rely on ignoring mechanics by having the Druid heal through heavy damage. This generally involves saving and then spamming and .


CC

You can help with breakbars using any of the following skills:

  • or or
  • or
  • from
  • Swapping to staff or with traited
  • (not recommended as you generally need this skill for other mechanics)


Miscellaneous Tips

  • only lasts for 60 seconds and has a very long cooldown. Save it for the phases when people are most likely to go down.
  • Place your spirits where all your squad members will be in range of them. This is important if you will be constantly moving (e.g. on VG).
  • provides Chilled Chilled and Weakness Weakness, which will be a DPS increase for many classes due to traits like , , and . Always use off cooldown if possible.
  • If you need to cleanse conditions, use . The light field can be blasted with or . If you need a lot of condition cleanse take and . can also cleanse certain conditions like chill and immobilize.
  • Use , , or if you need to immobilize things. In dire situations you can use (not recommended).
  • blocks projectiles, which is relevant for certain encounters like Cairn.
  • Always cast another spirit before . This is so that when you see the other spirit expire, you can manually activate just before expires for extra damage.
  • Your pets are dumb and will take damage from enemies and mechanics. Swap them out if they're about to die.
  • can be used to blind adds.
  • If you have nothing else to do, maximize your DPS and astral force generation by spamming axe/warhorn skills until you need to heal or do your boon rotation again.


Ratings

This build has a rating of 5 stars based on 5 votes.
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3 stars
Warming Hearth gave this build 3 stars • May 2022
Unfortunately, the lack of quickness and alacrity after the patch that made all boons 5 targets, plus the release of heal mechanist, have pushed druid out of the meta. It remains a very good choice for all groups and is still very often played, since Spirits remain at 10 target, but it's not as essential as it was before. Hopefully, the Spirit and Banner rework planned for summer 2022 will make druid an actual good support and not just a Spirit bot.
5 stars
Chinkeeyong gave this build 5 stars • September 2018
The premier raid healer and the cornerstone of most common raid strategies. You can't go wrong with a Druid.
5 stars
Narth gave this build 5 stars • October 2016
This guide gives a lot of great details for any new Druid. This build should become the standard healing druid build for most raid groups unless you're running a speed comp. Personally, I found the zerker Druid build to be too low on healing since the recent balance patch and found this build to work as a good replacement for both myself and my raid group! I really do think for the majority of gw2 raiders that this build is in the current meta.
5 stars
Gale gave this build 5 stars • September 2016
Solid starting point for entry-level Druids or teams that require stronger healing. It's a tad overkill in a double-Druid meta but it's still a viable alternative by providing a forgiving safety net.
5 stars
Yiwll gave this build 5 stars • September 2016
Good healing, and extremely useful for high damage-inflicting fights.

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