In the current state of the game, the following comps are "tier 1", in order:
There are several more comps that can shoot to the top, but those are the 5 best, statistically.
You will require a few addons to perform optimally:
- Some sort of DR tracker
- An interrupt cooldown tracker
- A HoT tracker (pitbull is awesome)
Lifebloom is very efficient. Spam it. Remember you can only have it on 1 target. Rejuvenation is quite efficient as well. Don't cast it on yourself if you're just about to dip under 50% (a talent does this for free). Use regrowth when you get a free casting proc (Omen of Clarity). This is optimal for mana. Don't use Nourish, it sucks.. Most druids wont use healing touch. Use nature's swiftness to cast a cyclone, not a heal. It's higher net health gain.
- Use innervate asap. LoS (line of sight) any dispeller and druids when doing so. Otherwise you will get dispelled or cycloned (which negates the mana gain).
- Always stand near a Line of Sight object. This allows you to Line of Sight fears, sheep, charges, etc etc. I like to constantly dance in and out of LoS while throwing out Heals over Time. Makes it very difficult to control a druid outside of instant fears, death-coils etc. You can also shift to anything to avoid sheep. Tree of life breaks sheep.
- Speaking of instant fears, always be aware when a priest of warlock beelines it for you. Ask your partners to peel them off. Travel form away.
- Versus enhance shamans, locks and mages, you need to bait and fake interrupts. Cast a heal/cyclone and cancel it immediately. See if you can get them to throw an interrupt at you. Once you've "juked" their interrupt, cast your spells. Keep an eye on its cooldown.
- If you're getting tunneled by melee, travel form behind a pillar and cast nature's grasp. Casting this spell pre emptively really messes around with people. You can use this spell to Line of Sight warlock pets as well.
- Soothe fury warrior enrages.
- Instant hibernate anything that has fur (behind a pillar).
- Monitor rogues and IS/faerie fire them before they restealth.
- Bind 1/2/3 to a macro that cyclones arena1, arena2, arena3 (requires gladius).
- Make innervate macros. You dont want to accidentally innervate the wrong person.
- Use 2 wyrmhide, 3 kodohide for the extra resil (or 3 and 2).
- Use glyph of swiftmend, rejuvination, lifebloom.
- Feral sucks, play restoration, lol.
- You cant cyclone a target that is already cycloned. You must let off the cast just as the first cyclone ends. This makes cycloning challenging.
- If you land a clutch cyclone and the enemy's trinket is up, he will probably trinket. Cast another cyclone immediately after the first, you might land a cyclone as he trinkets the first. This costs no extra mana if you land an "immune" cyclone.
- Use bear form bash when chasing someone you want to cyclone badly. Skull bash is useful too.
- Prowl > dash > pounce > cyclone is not a bad opener against comps with no rogue, feral or ample AoE.
- Don't mash your cooldowns when you get swapped to. One cooldown should do the job. Get your partners to peel! Otherwise you die on the next switch.
- Night elfs can shadowmeld to get pets off them. Ideal for dropping felhunters and cycloning.
- Be wary of priest teams dispelling your hots. This is the nastiest thing you have to deal with.
- Mana burn is also nasty. Line of sight it.
- Cyclone can be used offensively. Has your melee facerolled a mage to 20%? Cyclone him if he blinks away, plenty of good things can happen here, you might even watch his healer cast a big important heal into the cyclone.
- Cyclone blessing of protection, pain suppression, shield wall, or weak targets when possible. Cycloning when triple lifebloom is about to bloom is also key.
- Cyclone other druids' innervates. Do the same for shield wall, bop, and dispersion.
- Make use of your melee swing to kill totems. Mana spring, tremor, grounding. These are important totems. Call out if you see a mana tide and RAPE it.
- Abilities to watch out for (all classes really): Shadow Dance, Recklessness, Wings (ret), Bestial Wrath, Spirit Wolves, Arcane Mages, Dark Transformation, Metamorphosis, Berserk. These abilities = incoming heavy damage. Be prepared.
- Versus comps that can switch hard (most cleaves), leave a rejuv on anyone who steps into a vulnerable spot.
- Versus rogues keep an eye on the cooldown of kidney shot. Cyclone the rogue as he uses it. This will prevent heavy damage from the rogue during KS.
- In terms of strategy, it depends on the comp really. I like starting the match with an instant cyclone. I suggest reading some arenajunkies.
HPal / War - 3/10
This matchup is much easier than it was in WotLK. Warriors can kill paladins with more ease than ever, and should tunnel the paladin the entire match. As a druid it's your job to control the warrior, instant roots/cyclone/bash should do the job. To fill in the DR gaps, deadzone the warrior or jump his charge. Throw insect swarm / moonfire / roots / wraths onto the paladin when possible to force a kill.
Rogue / Mage - 7/10
The opener is everything vs this comp. I found more success running in mounted, and popping tree of life immediately. This allows me to avoid sap while my warrior gets in combat. Avoiding polymorph is extremely important once ToL fades. They will most likely attempt to blow up the warrior while CC'ing you. NS cyclone is pretty clutch vs these teams, allowing you to take control of the game with good CC on the rogue or mage. Since recuperate pretty much outheals warrior damage (particularly at low hp), it's more advisable to kill the mage. Keep in mind, this isn't WotLK and switching targets often is very helpful. An ideal match would start with a good opener, a cycloned/rooted/faerie fired rogue. If and when the rogue cloaks, your warrior should be quick to charge + bleed him. This should make the rogue much easier to handle while your warrior works on the mage.
Resto Shaman / Warlock - 10/10
Insanely hard to beat (haven't beat one of these teams yet). The damage throughput of affliction warlocks is nuts and cannot be dispelled due to UA. Killing the pet has not worked, this team has too much CC and resummoning is far too easy for them. I think the best strategy is to sit on the warlock and mitigate as much damage as possible. The druid needs to play flawlessly and do the following:
- Position himself to avoid fears and summoning circle (due to teleport + howl)
- Root and LoS felhunter due to spell lock
- Knock down mana spring when it's used (mana tide with the warrior's help)
- Knock down grounding totem, bash + cyclone the healer while avoiding the felhunter
Resto Druid / Warlock - 11/10
Somehow harder to beat than shaman / lock. There is no viable kill target, and you might as well just leave this one. Luckily this comp is fairly rare.yhs-geneiotransfer, Resto druid cooldown monitor