D&D (2024) New Wild Shape

I like the general direction, even if it needs some refinement. Keeping DM facing material out the hands of players is the only bit of design philosophy I've seen in OneD&D that I consider to be substantially better than what LevelUp does.

log in or register to remove this ad


Level 1
Druid magic. Once per short rest, you can do one of the following. These all take concentration, as if concentrating on a spell.

-Harmless wild shape. As an action you can turn into an unobtrusive prey creature, such as a deer or mouse, that most people will overlook. You can not attack, speak, or cast spells in this form, but otherwise still use your game statistics. You can end the form as a bonus action, or if you are knocked unconscious.

-Influence plants. You spend 10 minutes getting a plant to grow into a particular shape that it could of naturally grown into. This can be used to make roots appear as a ladder, or vines become swing, or have a tree bend over to reach the top of a building. A plant can only be affected by this feature once per month.

-Influence weather. You adjust the natural weather one step in a 1 mile radius. This can turn light rain into heavy rain, or a cold day into just a mild one. This effect doesn't stack.

-Influence fire. You can gently directing the flow of a large natural fire within 150'. This is a slow effect and does not allow the fire to do anything unnatural, though can be unlikely. For instance, you could allow you to have a druid grove untouched by a forest fire, or push a town fire to leap to a certain building (assuming the residents don't extinguish it first).

Level 2:
Healing blossom.

Level 3, chose a sub class.
Combat wild shape.
Combat plant shape.
Combat fire shape.
Combat weather shape.

Level ?
Improved Druid magic.


Dragon Lover
If this new wildshape feature becomes the official version, I will simply not use this Druid going forward even if I like most of the other class revisions. There are only two features I like from this UA version and I might graft them into the 2014 Druid but that’s really all I’ll use from this revision.


"Diegetics", by L. Ron Gygax
A druid with a shield and a shillelagh can have more ac, access to spells and about the same melee damage until level 5. after level 5 you have half the number of attacks, but being able to cast spells is reason enough to never wild shape in combat.
Yep. Wildshape is actually a combat downgrade in Tier 1, unless they decide to nerf shillelagh (which seems quite possible). The only benefit I see is increased speed and better Str/Dex checks.


Wildshape plus Pass Without Trace did make Druids very insane scouts/thieves/infiltrators.

I get the need to nerf Druids, they're definitely one of the strongest classes (I'd put 'em at number 2 myself), but the new Wildshape just seems a bit uninspired to me.
I don’t think druids needed a nerf. They are the keast played class in the PHB, nerfing them won’t improve that


Yep. Wildshape is actually a combat downgrade in Tier 1, unless they decide to nerf shillelagh (which seems quite possible). The only benefit I see is increased speed and better Str/Dex checks.
If they don’t nerf shillelagh, I’d say even in tier 2 it’s a downgrade, because of the loss of access to spellcasting


Now you're infected by the Musical Doodle
I don’t think druids needed a nerf. They are the keast played class in the PHB, nerfing them won’t improve that
I'd bet they're less played more for complexity and just having annoying things to deal with, like the metal armor thing, wildshape needing to look for statblocks and have seen them in-game, prepared spellcasting with a lot of concentration, summoning spells being annoying to deal with, etc. The SRD also has the Land subclass, not the Moon one, so that's what appears on Beyond if you don't have stuff unlocked, which I think would impact things a bit as well.

Making things simpler and having Moon as default would prob help more. Having played both a Druid and a Barbarian back to back, the power and versatility difference is just night and day.

I think we need to dig into what a Druid can and should do and what the limits of those should be. Some people have rightfully brought up that the Druid has stepped on other classes toes (possibly more so than the Wizard which might be another "problem"). Not counting the ridiculous things a (high-level) 3.5e Druid can do, like being wildshaped into a bear casting spells while riding on a dire bear companion, leading a horde of summoned bears.

And I felt summoning was another big aspect of the Druid in the past too, and I guess they could use those beast stats for some summons I guess, but they'd have to be weaker than wildshaping because of the existing in 2 places thing, as in being a humanoid caster and having something out there fighting. Whereas I feel wildshaping should be like summoning but stronger, in that it's sort of like you are summoning something, but disappearing from the area.

Though this is too much of a combat-centric outlook into what Wildshaping is, and I always thought scouting was a major thing. It's still there with the familiar, but I've felt it's better if it was the Druid themselves.

I guess it can go back to Wildshape vs Summons, into the whole being there or not there at the time as a thing.


I generally like the expanded options of Channel Nature (not in love with the name, though—something like "Nature's Blessing" would sound better) including Wild Companion (from Tasha's) and Healing Blossoms (though I think that how it's currently implemented is underwhelming). Despite these new options, most of the features of the base class revolve around Wildshape, to my dismay, instead of adding more interesting non-Wildshape features. And speaking of the Wildshape ability, they make it worse: gone are the ablative hp, you don't gain an aquatic form until 7th level (as opposed to 4th level in the 2014 PHB), you don't gain an aerial form until 9th level (as opposed to 8th level), and, quixotically, you can't turn into a Tiny creature until 11th level! Even though I'd like to see Wildshape de-emphasized in the base class, it didn't need to be nerfed!

I do understand that the templates will make things easier, and I'm mostly okay with them. However, the execution is lackluster—like others have suggested, I'd be more onboard with these templates if you could modify the base form with secondary traits such as pounce, pack tactics, spider climb, etc. to better model different animal types.

As to the Circle of the Moon... What the hell, WotC?! This subclass was about being able to use more powerful Wildshape forms than the base class and being able to tank effectively. Now all you get is the standard Wildshape form with a bonus action Unarmed Strike. Again, the loss of ablative hp hurt the tanking ability of this subclass and, if that wasn't enough, the 6th-level Primal Strike ability is gone—nerf upon nerf. Elemental Wildshape has been changed, too—while it now comes online at 6th level (instead of 10th level), you no longer turn into an elemental, but instead gain elemental resistance/damage to attacks. Not exactly awful, but a change that's unnecessary. Overall, this revised subclass is a major downgrade and something I wouldn't want to play.


Jedi Master
Just thought of a small change that could be made to the playtest version of the Druid that would align with the goals of making the Druid more focused on spellcasting but still give an excellent reason to Wildshape with the new stat blocks.

When you enter your Wildshape form, taking damage does not force a concentration check.

The major buff of not having your concentration broken is offset by the weaker and less useful animal form, but still gives the PC something to do every turn while they concentrate on a summons or other spell.

Voidrunner's Codex

Remove ads