How Diablo 4's Druid Compares to Diablo 2

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Druids were a fan-favorite class in Diablo 2, and now that they are confirmed to be returning as one of the three starting classes in Diablo 4, many fans are wondering how the Druid has changed since Diablo 2. First introduced in Diablo 2's Lord of Destruction DLC, many fans grew to love the shapeshifting class due to its wide build variety and unique skills. Thankfully, the spirit of the class has remained the same, though Blizzard is changing up certain elements of the class to make it more unique.

Diablo 2's Druid

Diablo 2's Druid had three main skill paths: Elemental Skills, Shapeshifting, and and Summoning Skills. Essentially the Druid can wield the elements to deal devastating ranged damage or shapeshift into werewolves or werebears to deal massive melee damage. Druids could also summon creatures to fight on their side, giving buffs and dealing damage depending on the creatures summoned. The Druid blended several different class ideas making it a very versatile class that could be played in many ways. Luckily, Diablo 4's Druid takes a lot of the good from Diablo 2's Druid and brings some favorite abilities back in a new, fresh take.

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For the Elemental Skills, the Druid in Diablo 2 can harness the forces of nature to deal devastating attacks. In the Elemental tree, as the Druid levels up they unlock more and more powerful spells. By the time they reach Level 30, they unlock Armageddon and Hurricane, two powerful skills that can deal strong fire and cold damage respectively. Shapeshifting is all about the Druid turning into more powerful creatures to deal a wide array of attacks. The Druid could shapeshift into a Werewolf or Werebear, each with their own stats and attacks. Werewolves specialized in speed and accuracy while the Werebear specialized in defense and power. Summoning is pretty straightforward, as it allows the Druid to summon beasts or plants to aid the Druid in a number of ways. Thankfully, from the Diablo 4 Druid gameplay that has been shown so far, it seems that these ideas are here to stay.

How Diablo 4's Druid Compares

Blizzard unveiled the Druid's abilities and skill trees during the Diablo 4 reveal at BlizzCon 2019. For fans of the original Druid in Diablo 2, many abilities and ideas behind Diablo 4's Druid will seem familiar. The Druid's skills still hold onto the three main ideas behind Elemental, Shapeshifting, and Summoning, though skills are more divided up between different categories instead of three main skill trees. The skill groups in Diablo 4 are: Basic Attacks, Spirit Attacks, Defensive Abilities, Wrath Abilities, Companion Abilities, and Ultimate Abilities. The abilities in each category feature different Shapeshifting and Elemental abilities. For example, in Basic Attacks, Maul will turn the Druid into a Werebear to slam nearby enemies while Storm Strike electrifies the Druid's weapon with electric damage for a time.

The Summoning skills also make an appearance in the form of Companion skills. These skills will passively keep up specific types of companions alongside the Druid which do different things. Wolves will seek out and bite enemies, Ravens will inflict Vulnerability to enemies, and Vine Creepers will poison nearby enemies. The Druid's Ultimate abilities are more unique in Diablo 4. Grizzly Rage is the most reminiscent of Diablo 2, as it lets the Druid turn into a Werebear for a short time to rampage around and deal massive damage with new Werebear skills. Cataclysm summons many tornadoes to deal wind and lightning damage. Petrify is the most original skill in the group as it stuns all nearby enemies and allows players to deal extra damage to them. Using these abilities will allow the Druid to fill a lot of great rolls, especially when going against Diablo 4's massive world bosses.

When comparing the two Druids, Diablo 4's Druid definitely captures the spirit of Diablo 2 while adding some more variety to the class. It's clear that Blizzard is trying to add some variety It keeps the classic ideas behind the original Druid while innovating and remixing skills to create a fresh, new experience for Diablo 4. Hopefully fans will enjoy the Druid along with the other Diablo 4 starting classes whenever the game finally launches.

Diablo 4 is currently in development for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

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