- Author: bobodingo
- Date: July 20, 2022
- Expansion: WotLK Classic
Professions are a crucial part of your World of Warcraft character, potentially offering a large boost to your damage, healing or survivability, while also allowing you to generate some gold.
This section will cover some of your best options for professions as a Balance Druid.
Like with most other classes & specs in the game, Engineering will be your strongest profession. For the second profession slot, we recommend Tailoring, which is generally viewed as the best 2nd profession for casters. However, Tailoring is not significantly better than the professions listed in the Useful Professions section (with the exception of Skinning, which is significantly weaker), so you could use any one of those instead for the 2nd profession slot.
Engineering is the king of professions for PvE content, offering a vast, vast array of different benefits.
The main benefit of Engineering lies in the Hyperspeed Accelerators gloves enchant, which gives +340 haste rating for 12 seconds, on a 1 minute cooldown. This translates into a ~10% cast speed increase with a 20% uptime, which is already amazing on its own — but it becomes even bigger when you use the Accelerators when your various trinkets proc. If you are at the soft haste cap of 401, I recommend using the gloves only in lunar phases to not put wrath under the GCD.
Additionally, as an Engineer you have access to the Nitro Boosts boots enchant, passively giving +24 crit rating and coming with an-use effect which massively increases your speed for 5 seconds, allowing you to move out of dangerous AoE effects immediately.
Finally, just like in previous expansions, Engineers can use powerful explosives such as Saronite Bombs and Global Thermal Sapper Charges.
As a Tailor, you gain access to the Lightweave Embroidery cloak enchant, a proc which gives you +295 spell power for 15 seconds with a 45 second internal cooldown. This translates into a possible +98 spell power bonus on average if it procs exactly every 45 seconds, or a +74 spell power bonus on average if it procs every 60 seconds, which is absolutely massive.
However, there is an opportunity cost attached to this bonus, as it prohibits you from using the standard cloak enchant, Enchant Cloak – Greater Speed, making it slightly weaker in practice. This trade-off is still very much worth it for us however, as stacking your cooldowns along with this proc can result in a massive DPS boost, which trumps what other professions can bring — though not by a lot.
Tailoring is pretty weak on the gold generation side, unfortunately, so the cloak enchant is the main benefit. However, there’s also some useful cloth gear you can craft yourself, which can be very useful for fresh level 80 characters, saving you some gold by not having to buy it on the Auction House.
The following professions are considered viable, but offer a lesser benefit compared to the best professions, so they’re not recommended. If you’re not focused on making your character 100% optimal, you can use any of these professions just fine.
Jewelcrafting is an extremely potent profession for most classes / specs and that includes Balance Druids. Not only do you gain access to powerful, Jewelcrafter-unique gems, but you also get to sell gems to others, giving you a modest income through this profession.
The main benefit of Jewelcrafting is the Jewelcrafter-unique gems, Dragon’s Eye, which are more powerful than regular gems, but are limited to 3 equipped at a time. The main ones you’ll be crafting as a Boomie are Runed Dragon’s Eye, and using 3 of those will result in a +48 spell power increase compared to using regular epic gems — Runed Cardinal Ruby. This is 1 spell power better than what Alchemy offers, and 2 spell power better than what other professions offer — wow!
As an Alchemist, you gain access to the Mixology passive effect, which increases the effectiveness of flasks and elixirs you consume, but only if you can craft them yourself. This results in a +47 spell power increase when using Flask of the Frost Wyrm, our preferred flask. This is 1 spell power better than what most other professions offer — truly a huge boost! 😛
Alchemy is one of the best professions for gold generation, as potions, flasks and elixirs are always relevant and in high demand. This makes it overall a great profession for a Balance Druid, if you don’t end up going with Tailoring.
As a Scribe, you gain access to the Master’s Inscription of the Storm shoulder enchant, which provides a +46 spell power increase over the standard enchant available to everyone, Greater Inscription of the Storm. This bonus ties Enchanting, Leatherworking and Blacksmithing, and is only marginally worse than what the “better” professions offer, so if you enjoy Inscription, it’s a very viable choice.
Scribes also get to make Glyphs & scrolls, providing a nice source of income, but many will argue that the real benefit in Inscription comes in not having to grind The Sons of Hodir reputation for the shoulder enchants!
As an Enchanter you gain access to the Enchant Ring – Greater Spellpower enchant, which you can apply to both of your rings for a +46 spell power boost. This bonus ties Inscription, Leatherworking and Blacksmithing, and is only marginally worse than what the “better” professions offer, so if you enjoy Enchanting, it’s a very viable choice.
You also get to enchant your own equipment without needing to tip another enchanter, which results in a neat amount of gold saved, on top of the gold you can generate by enchanting others.
As a Leatherworker you gain access to the Fur Lining – Spell Power bracer enchant, which proves a +46 spell power increase over the standard enchant available to everyone, Enchant Bracers – Superior Spellpower. This bonus ties Inscription, Enchanting and Blacksmithing, and is only marginally worse than what the “better” professions offer, so if you enjoy Leatherworking, it’s a very viable choice — though we’d generally recommend one of the other options.
As a Balance Druid, you can craft some leather gear for yourself using Leatherworking, though it’s generally good in the early phases of your game, when your gear isn’t very strong. Beyond that, Leatherworking unfortunately doesn’t have any other real benefits, as it’s pretty weak for gold generation.
Blacksmiths can add 2 extra gem sockets to their gear — 1 on wrists, and 1 on hands. Socketing 2x Runed Cardinal Ruby into them translates into a +46 spell power bonus. This bonus ties Inscription, Enchanting and Leatherworking, and is only marginally worse than what the “better” professions offer, so if you enjoy Enchanting, it’s a very viable choice — though we’d generally recommend one of the other options.
Druids cannot use plate armor, so the extra sockets is all you get, and Blacksmithing is pretty poor for gold generation as well.
The following professions do not offer any DPS-increasing benefits and are thus not considered viable for Balance Druids in PvE.
Herbalists gain the Lifeblood active skill, which heals you for 3600 over 5 seconds, with a 3 minute cooldown. This can occasionally come in handy, particularly while leveling, farming or questing, but will generally never be enough to save you in a dungeon or raid.
On the flipside, Herbalism is one of the strongest professions for gold generation, as herbs are used in Alchemy and Inscription, and thus always in demand. This makes it a good profession to have on an alt, particularly a Druid, Rogue or Hunter.
Skinners gain access to the Master of Anatomy passive, which offers a +40 crit rating boost. This is weaker than all of the other professions mentioned in this list, but at least it’s something.
Skinning is generally not that good at gold generation either, so it’s overall not a great profession.