When you play a Druid in D&D you’re going beast mode. But there’s so much more than bears out there. Try one of these.
Druids are notoriously powerful, owing to their ability to turn into a part of the Monster Manual twice per rest. Now people will tell you that you can only transform within reason–you have to have seen the beasts before, unless you’re a Circle of the Moon druid you’re only able to turn into beasts of CR 1/4 for a while…and even if you are a Circle of the Moon Druid you can only go up to CR 1. And you have to wait until 4th level to transform into an aquatic monster and 8th level to transform into one that can fly.
But even with all that in mind, Wild Shape is still one of the best class features in the game. It’s a way to gain new senses, like darkvision, new modes of movement like climbing or flying, and powerful new attack options. You also gain a huge pile of hit points that, once they go away, leave you practically unscathed. Unless you got hit real hard. With all that in mind, here are five of the best beasts that any Druid can turn into, day 1.
Giant Wolf Spider
We talked about Wild Shape giving you movement options you wouldn’t otherwise have, and with a Giant Wolf Spider you get spider climb (so you can perch on ceilings or vertically on walls) right alongside a 40 ft movement speed that will make you mobile. On top of that, your new bite comes with poison damage that can paralyze a creature for an hour if it drops them to 0 hit points.
Someitmes though, you just want to be able to hit for 3d6+3 points of damage every round. When you turn into an Elk, you can do exactly that, thanks to your Ram ability, which means that if you move at least 20 ft before hitting someone, you deal that powerful hit and have a chance of knocking them prone.
Giant Badgers are a great option for the more offensively minded druid though. They do not have much in the way of hit points or accuracy, but they get to make two attacks (and at 2nd level no less) per round. And they have a burrow speed, so they can go places most monsters can’t.
You’ll have to travel to the lower planes (or find a good book where you can see a picture of the beast) in order to turn into one, but, it’s worth the trip. Turning into a Stench Kow gets you resistance to cold, fire, and poison damage, it also gets you darkvision and you smell so bad that creatures starting their turns next to you must save or be poisoned.
Finally we come to the Velociraptor. This is one is all about teamwork. You don’t hit *quite* as hard as a giant badger, and can’t burrow, but what you lack in damage you make up for in accuracy, especially since velociraptors gain pack tactics which gives you advantage if one of your allies is nearby.
But the real benefit to being a velociraptor is that every time you drop someone in a fight, you get to do this: