Welcome to the Companion Druid Leveling Guide. If you're excited about using Companions as your main damage dealers, even if it means a slower pace, this guide is your key to success.
Poison Creeper deals widespread poison damage, locking down enemies in the process and triggering Landslides via Subterranean Aspect, helping you trigger Packleader. Trample steps in to amplify this poison damage via Aspect of the Changeling's Debt. Meanwhile, Ravens weaken foes by applying Vulnerable, while the Wolves focus on strong single-target attacks. Storm Strike fills in the gaps between all these cooldown heavy skills and has a chance to completely reset all of their cooldowns!
This guide teaches you all about how to reach the endgame in Diablo 4 with the Companion Druid. Let's get started!
This build guide takes you through the Campaign up to Level 50. Endgame guides will follow soon in our Druid Guides section. Stay tuned!
No Resource Cost ✔
Decent Single Target ✔
Good AoE ✔
All Companions ✔
❌ Slow Pace
❌ Cooldown Heavy
❌ Inconsistent Damage
❌ Low Mobility
Season 1 - The Malignant
Players on the Eternal Realm should ignore this section of the guide. This build is designed to work without Caged Hearts, though it can be enhanced by them.
Diablo 4 Season 1 introduces a new questline to hunt Malignant Monsters across Sanctuary. Defeating them drops Caged Hearts that are placed in Jewelry infested sockets to gain build-altering powers. Check out the full Season 1 The Malignant guide from Chewingnom to learn more!
The Heart needs to match the color of the socket in your Jewelry (Ring and Amulet) to be able to socket it.
- There are 32 Caged Hearts divided into 4 different colors. The first 3 must be socketed into their respective infested socket color, while the 4th can be placed into any infested socket.
- Once socketed, they cannot be removed. Instead they can be broken down into Invokers to target farm the Caged Hearts you want inside Malignant Tunnels.
- Higher powered Caged Hearts drop at higher levels.
With this in mind, let's look at the top 3 best Caged Hearts (and alternatives) for this build:
Best-in-Slot Caged Hearts
- Caged Heart of the Moonrage Adding +3 Ranks to Wolves and an additional wolf not only enhances your damage potential but also functions as a damage multiplier, as the increased number of wolves results in more attacks.
- Caged Heart of Creeping Death Augments your Poison Creeper's damage output.
- Caged Heart of the Picana Since there aren't many other options to significantly increase your damage, this choice adds a small amount of damage.
Alternative Caged Hearts
- Caged Heart of the Agitated Winds Provides some conditional damage and Crowd Control.
To kick things off, allocate 2 points to Basic Skills in order to unlock the Core Skill section. Your preference is Storm Strike due to its significant damage reduction effect.
Point 1: Storm Strike
Point 2: Enhanced Storm Strike
Unlocking Lightning Storm
Use Lightning Storm until you can fully invest in Companions. It offers the necessary early game damage and a smooth transition into the Companions skill branch later in the skill tree. Maintain Lightning Storm's size by channeling it and attacking at least every 6 seconds!
Point 3: Lightning Storm
Point 4: Enhanced Lightning Storm
Point 5: Raging Lightning Storm
Point 6: Fierce Storm Strike
Continue to increase your damage output by maxing out Lightning Storm.
Blood Howl is added as an extra option for healing rather than using potions to help top off your health.
Poison Creeper is the Druid's highest damage ability in the early game, Poisoning and Immobilizing enemies in a massive area of effect around you! With the addition of Subterranean Aspect, it also triggers multiple Landslides all around you, helping you get more resets with Packleader.
Wolves serve as both your single-target ability and meat shield from monsters. Attacking enemies already Immobilized by Poison Creeper enhances their damage due to Enhanced Wolf Pack.
Ravens boost your chance of landing Critical Strikes and provide a reliable method for applying the Vulnerable status. Engage with them to secure additional damage through the Vulnerable status.
Point 7-10: Lightning Storm
Point 11: Blood Howl
Point 12: Poison Creeper
Point 13: Wolves
Point 14: Ravens
Respec for Companions
Trample is your primary mobility Skill on the Druid. It also adds a solid amount of damage with Enhanced Trample. Respec from Lightning Storm and max out Storm Strike as well as Predatory Instinct. Finally, unlock Trample as your final Skill.
Point 15: Enhanced Poison Creeper
Point 16: Ferocious Poison Creeper
Remove x1: Raging Lightning Storm
Remove x1: Enhanced Lightning Storm
Remove x5: Lightning Storm
Add x4: Storm Strike
Add x3: Predatory Instinct
Point 17: Trample
Point 18: Enhanced Trample
You now want to finalize upgrading all of your Skills to gain the maximum benefits from all of them. After this step, you should engage combat with Blood Howl, then Ravens for Vulnerable, followed by Poison Creeper and Trample for massive damage via Aspect of the Changeling's Debt. Send your Wolves onto any remaining target. Remember that Blood Howl also buffs and heals your Wolves via Nighthowler's Aspect!
Point 19-21: Call of the Wild
Point 22: Enhanced Wolf Pack
Point 23: Enhanced Ravens
Point 24: Ferocious Ravens
Point 25: Brutal Wolf Pack
Point 26: Enhanced Blood Howl
Point 27: Preserving Blood Howl
Point 28: Natural Trample
Unlocking Key Passive
At this point, you will maximize all three Companion skills and unlock your Key Passive, Ursine Strength. While the extra 20% Maximum Life won't apply to you, you will still get a 30% damage multiplier while Healthy.
Point 29-32: Poison Creeper
Point 33: Wolves
Point 34: Ursine Strength
Point 35-37: Wolves
Point 38-41: Ravens
The Final Stretch
In this section, we exhaust most of the remaining offensive options on this build until we find new Legendary Aspects. Prioritize the damage Passives first, then allocate points into Utility options.
Point 42: Neurotoxin
Point 43-45: Envenom
Point 46-48: Digitigrade Gait
After gathering all Renown in Diablo 4 you have 10 extra Skill Points to spend on every character. Your first priority is to spend them toward the leveling progression we've shown above. Once you've reached the end, put them into these nodes:
Renown 49: Ancestral Fortitude
Renown 50-52: Vigilance
Renown 53: Quickshift
Renown 54-56: Heightened Senses
Renown 57-58: Ancestral Fortitude
Check out our Renown Guide to unlock all your additional rewards efficiently.
Druid Spirit Boons
The Druid Spirit Boons allow you to select a total of 5 Boons from 4 Spirits that act as a Passive buff to your character. You can select 1 Boon per Spirit by default. The 5th Boon can be allocated once ALL Spirit Boons have been unlocked. This requires you to bond with one of the Spirits, choose one and interact with it in Túr Dúlra.
Unlocking Spirit Boons
Once you reach level 15, you have to complete a short questline starting in Túr Dúlra, Scosglen. To gain access to the Priority Quest, you first have to defeat the Stronghold of evil forces that has overrun Túr Dúlra. You receive 25 Druidic Spirit Offerings to unlock your first Boon when you complete the questline.
Each Spirit has 4 Boons that are unlocked with 25 Druidic Spirit Offerings each. On 3 of the Spirits, they unlock in a specific order. The outlier is the Snake Spirit - You have to unlock all his Boons simultaneously, meaning you need to collect 100 Druidic Spirit Offerings to gain access to its Boons.
Spirit Boon Progression
- The first 25 Druidic Spirit Offerings unlock Packleader to reset Poison Creeper, Wolves and Ravens. This is the bread and butter of the Companion build, unlock it as soon as you reach level 15!
- Collect 25 Druidic Spirit Offerings and go to the Eagle Spirit to activate Scythe Talons.
- Save up to 75 Druidic Spirit Offerings to unlock Wariness from the Deer Spirit.
- There is very little benefit to getting a Boon on the Snake Spirit. Stay away from Túr Dúlra until you have collected 275 Druidic Spirit Offerings to unlock the remaining Spirit Boons. Pickup Overload on the Snake Spirit for a bonus to your Storm Strike. Bond with the Eagle Spirit and activate Swooping Attacks.
Learn more details in our full Druid Spirit Boons Guide.
Gear Progression & Global Stat Priorities
Leveling up in Diablo 4 is similar to most other ARPGs and MMOs - we're at the mercy of what drops. For the most part this means replacing Rares with better Rares all the way up to 50. If you're lucky enough to find some Legendaries or Uniques, they can provide a significant power boost (discussed in the next sections). Assuming you don't find any of those, let's look at some key stats to look for along the way:
Hint: Press SHIFT over an item to compare it to what you're wearing!
In general, use the weapon with the highest Damage per Second (DPS) available to you, whether it's a one-handed weapon with a totem or a two-handed weapon. For the Companion build, a one-handed weapon with a totem is better due to extra attack speed from the weapon and the ability to roll basic skill attack speed on the totem. This works well with Packleader. You also benefit from extra Cooldown Reduction on the totem. If you can, choose a one-handed weapon and totem setup. However, when leveling, focus on weapons with higher DPS, regardless of their specific stats.
- Weapon: Pref. Axes, Vulnerable Damage, Damage to Close Enemies, Willpower, Sockets
- Totem: Critical Strike Chance, Basic Skill Attack Speed, Cooldown, Lucky Hit Chance
Upgrade only your Weapon and Totem at the Blacksmith and fill their sockets with Emeralds.
Armor pieces typically grant us Defense and Utility stats, except the Gloves which offer a tidal wave of Offense. Here are the important stats to look for:
- Helm: Ranks to Poison Creeper, Wolves, Ravens, Cooldown Reduction, Basic Skill Attack Speed
- Armor: Companion Skill Damage, Life, Damage Reduction
- Gloves: Critical Strike Chance, Attack Speed, Lucky Hit Chance, Willpower
- Pants: Life, Damage Reduction, Armor, Willpower
- Boots: Movement Speed, Willpower
Jewelry provides powerful Offensive stats that help us on our leveling journey. Pay close attention to the rolls as higher leveled pieces aren't always better:
- Amulet: Movement Speed, Companion Skill Damage, Cooldown Reduction, Ranks to Companion Skills, Ranks to Call of the Wild
- Rings: Critical Strike Chance, Critical Strike Damage, Vulnerable Damage, Damage to Close Enemies, Life
Do not upgrade Armor or Jewelry while leveling. Socket Armor with Rubies and Jewelry with Skulls.
Codex of Power
The Codex of Power is a collection of Legendary Aspects you can imprint onto Rare or Legendary items at the Occultist. They unlock after completing specific Dungeons located around Sanctuary. For leveling there are a few Aspects that can significantly help us if we have the funds to imprint them:
Codex Leveling Aspects in Order of Priority:
|Subterranean Aspect||Season Journey - Chapter 1 Reward|
|Rapid Offensive Aspect||Buried Halls - Dry Steppes|
|Aspect of the Changeling's Debt||Conclave - Kehjistan|
|Nighthowler's Aspect||Forbidden City - Fractured Peaks|
|Aspect of Might||Dark Ravine - Dry Steppes|
|Aspect of the Protector||Lost Archives - Fractured Peaks|
|Aspect of Disobedience||Halls of the Damned - Kehjistan|
|Ghostwalker Aspect||Broken Bulwark - Scosglen|
Warning: DO NOT imprint your Weapons as they are constantly replaced while leveling. Put Offensive Aspects on your Amulet, Rings, or Gloves instead.
Learn more details in our article covering the Codex of Power.
Helpful Legendary Powers
If you're lucky enough to find a Legendary while leveling, chances are it'll be an upgrade for you and you should equip it immediately. However, they are not all created equal, and some of them can accelerate your journey tremendously. Let's look at the top Aspects you could find and how to take advantage of them:
- Mighty Storm's Aspect drastically improves your chances to reset all of your Companion Skills Cooldowns via Packleader. Should you find it, imprint it and switch your Key Passive to Earthen Might.
- Aspect of the Stampede is yet another damage multiplier for your Wolves, as well as all of your Companion Skills.
- Aspect of the Alpha is a massive damage increase for your Wolves.
Discover every Druid Legendary Power in our Druid Overview.
Leveling Tips and Tricks
Before we end this leveling guide, let's look at some general tips and tricks to remember for all classes and specs!
Level Up Your Potion. Many players don't know that you need to farm materials to upgrade your character's potion. Make sure you collect all materials as you explore Sanctuary, especially Gallowvine which is used in many recipes!
Compare your Items... Literally. Press Shift over an item in your inventory to compare it to what you're wearing. This makes it easy to determine what is and isn't an upgrade.
Renown is your Friend. While exploring the different zones, take time to gather Renown along the way. It has long-term benefits for your entire account, including more Skill/Paragon points and Potion charges. Renown is gained by activating Waypoints, finding Altars of Lilith, completing Side Quests/Dungeons and rescuing Strongholds.
Be Careful with Gold. A lot of endgame processes, like extracting and imprinting Legendary Aspects, are extremely expensive for a brand-new character. Don't spend all of your Gold along the way!
Don't Imprint Your Weapon. The most critical piece of gear while leveling up is your weapon, which gets replaced constantly. This makes imprinting a Legendary Aspect on it a waste of resources. Instead, put your best offensive Aspect on your Amulet, which can be used for a long time.
- The Companion Druid Leveling Build revolves around the fantasy of powering up Companions: Wolves, Poison Creeper and Ravens.
- Engage with Ravens to apply Vulnerable, then Poison Creeper and Trample. Finish off any remaining monsters with Wolves.
- Focus on getting as much Critical Strike Chance and Attack Speed to trigger Packleader as much as possible.
- Look out for helpful Legendary Aspects in the Codex of Power, especially those that buff your damage & damage reduction.
Written by Binashole
Reviewed by IBoilerUp