Sep 20

Who do I cast Symbiosis on?

mop_logo This post was originally written during Mists of Pandaria. Its content may be outdated due to changes that come with expansion packs. Please consider this while reading. 

Questions? Feel free to contact me – contact@sometimesatree.com.


Due to a change to Symbiosis, this post is no out of date. Tanks no longer get the sweet abilities they did when this post was written. Click here to read my follow up post!

Generally in a PvE encounter situation, you will want to cast Symbiosis on a tank.


Tanks all get a tanking cooldown that benefits them quite well. Symbiosis doesn’t really give non-guardian druids much in the way of a boost to their primary function – i.e. DPS or healing. So unless your tanks struggle to make use of cooldowns properly, and unless there is an encounter-specific niche that makes one other symbiotically-gained ability really, really good (or tanking cooldowns meaningless – think Naxx10 Instructor Razuvius), your raid will get the greatest benefit from having an extra tanking cooldown.

Which tank?

While the role to cast Symbiosis at is pretty cut-and-dry, there is still a good amount of choice to be made as to which tank you should cast symbiosis on. Each tank gets a different kind of cooldown.

  • Blood DKs get Might of Ursoc, a 15% health increase lasting 20 seconds.
  • Brewmaster Monks get Survival Instincts, a 25% damage reduction for 6 seconds.
  • Protection Pallies get Barkskin, a 10% damage reduction for 6 seconds that comes with an immunity spell pushback and is castable while under loss of control.
  • Protection Warriors get Savage Defense, an increased 45% chance to dodge for 6 seconds.

As you can see, all abilities are quite different. I consider the Paladin ability to be the most situational, and the Monk ability to be the most reliable. The Warrior ability would be great for a fight like Baleroc, where there is a huge hit on the tank that can be avoided. Finally, the Death Knight ability synergises amazingly well with Vampiric Blood. I like it for its double function of adding some general srvivability to a very situational bonus. Might of Ursoc seems to give DKs a boost to something they already do really well, so to be honest I think we’ll have to wait and see, as to how it compares to the others. My own personal tank happens to be a Death Knight and I will be casting symbiosis on him every chance I get, since I know I can rely on him to make use of it.

Permanent link to this article: http://sometimesatree.com/who-do-i-cast-symbiosis-on/

1 comment

1 ping

  1. Chris

    I’m participating in a rerlol project where I’m going to be playing a resto druid. AS a holy priest previously, I found your blog and followed it for the UI information, but now this guide will be invaluable for me. So thank you so very much for your work. It’s so hard to find a guide that is accommodating to those in between a basic WoW-familiarity and high-end theorycrafting, that this helps to fill a niche that I was just complaining about the other day. Thanks again!

  1. Who do I cast Symbiosis on? Addendum - Sometimes A Tree

    […] while back I posted about who to cast Symbiosis on, and Blizzard promptly nerfed the benefit that tanks got from Symbiosis. The result is that in […]

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