Walking the line between reality and the realm of dreams, Druids of the Circle of Dreams offer joy and rest to weary hearts.
So grab a nice cup of tea, cuddle up by the fire, and let’s talk about my personal favorite Druid subclass: the Circle of Dreams.
- 1 What is the Circle of Dreams?
- 2 Role in the Party
- 3 Circle of Dreams Abilities
- 4 Connections
- 5 Is the Circle of Dreams Druid Good?
- 6 Conclusion – Circle of Dreams Druid
What is the Circle of Dreams?
Druids of the Circle of Dreams are tied strongly to Feywild the dreamlike realms within it.
Officially introduced in Xanathar’s Guide to Everything, these Druids are often compassionate and warm-hearted folks. Aligning well with good creatures of the Feywild, the Circle of Dreams Druid adds a sense of wonder to the lands that they protect.
Calling upon the healing powers of nature, these Druids serve to mend the hearts and souls of those that they encounter.
Embracing the power of dreams, Druids who walk this path bring a sense of comfort and peace with them wherever they go.
Role in the Party
The Circle of Dreams Druid keeps with the Druid class’s general theme of adaptability.
Unlike other Druid subclass options like the Circle of Spores, Dream Druids are not likely to be on the front-lines of the party in battle. However, that doesn’t mean that they’ll be hanging around in the backline either! Keeping at mid-range allows the Circle of Dreams Druid to position themselves wherever they are most helpful.
The Circle of Dreams Druid makes for a fantastic healer thanks to their Balm of the Summer Court ability. Being able to heal a creature within 120 feet of you as a bonus action is ridiculously useful.
Furthermore, since this is an ability, you are still free to cast a spell with your action if you so choose!
As the Druid levels up, their abilities begin to show some of the trickier sides of their fey nature. Protecting the party while they rest, using secret fey passages to teleport around a battlefield, and more allow the Circle of Dreams Druid to be difficult to pin down.
Personally, being able to use spell slots for some of the bigger Druid spells without sacrificing the ability to heal is a major plus. Even better is being able to heal and cast those spells on the same turn. Now THAT’s what I call efficient action economy!
Circle of Dreams Abilities
So we lightly touched on the Circle of Dreams Druid’s abilities when talking about their role in the party, but let’s really dig in now!
This Circle’s abilities do a wonderful job at highlighting the Druid’s fey nature. With some cleverness and creativity, mechanics and flavor combine to create something truly incredible with this subclass!
Balm of the Summer Court
Every class or subclass has a “bread and butter” ability that just defines it. Without fail, they will always be using it nonstop.
For the Circle of Dreams Druid, that ability is the Balm of the Summer Court.
And boy is it a treat!
When the Druid takes the Circle of Dreams subclass at 2nd level, this is the first ability that they gain.
The Druid gets a number of d6s equal to their Druid level.
As a bonus action, they choose one creature within an incredible 120 feet of them and roll no more than half of their total available d6s. The total is how much the target is healed for.
Additionally, the target gains 1 temporary hit point for every die rolled in this way!
Positioning themselves as a mid-line combatant, the Circle of Dreams Druid can likely heal any of their allies on the map. This is particularly useful if you have a party member who drops to 0 hit points more than 60ft (or whatever your maximum movement happens to be) away!
Using Balm of the Summer Court and Wildshape
Ok, so it’s not like a Circle of Dreams is going to be out-healing a Life Cleric, but the utility is still just so freaking amazing.
Nothing shows this off better than using Balm of the Summer Court while using your Wild Shape.
BotSC is not a spell and is simply an ability. When using Wild Shape, the Player’s Handbook explicitly states that “you retain any features from your class, race, or other source and can use them if the new form is physically capable of doing so.”
Combining this with the Balm’s huge range, you can function as a secret helper if the situation requires it. Inconspicuously flying overhead and dropping some emergency heals on an ally is a very fun tactic.
Similarly, if you need to Wild Shape into a bear to help your party’s frontline, being able to still provide healing while pumping out front-line damage is very powerful!
Hearth of Moonlight and Shadow
At 6th level, the Circle of Dreams Druid gets the Hearth of Moonlight and Shadow ability.
This is a cool ability that is certainly far from useless, but I have to be honest… It is admittedly a little underwhelming and pretty situational.
Using this ability during a short or long rest, the Druid calls on the power of the Gloaming Court to protect their party. They create a 30ft sphere centered on whatever point they touch that hides any open flames inside the sphere from those outside of it. Additionally, everyone in the sphere gets a +5 bonus to Stealth and Perception checks.
It is important to note that Hearth of Moonlight and Shadow does not provide cover, but it is blocked by total cover. This means that you want to make sure that everyone is in an otherwise open space when using this ability.
Using Hearth of Moonlight and Shadow
I’m slow to call any spell or ability in D&D useless. As I wrote when discussing True Strike, there are always situations where certain effects can suddenly become unexpectedly useful!
Hearth of Moonlight and Shadow is exactly this kind of ability.
When I played a Circle of Dreams Druid, we did not have any real moments where this ability could shine. When resting, our Wizard would always be able to cast Tiny Hut so that we could rest safely in the dungeon. Because the Hut gave protection that Hearth of Moonlight and Shadow didn’t, there wasn’t a real need to use this ability.
But there are some situations in which Hearth of Moonlight and Shadow is a fantastic thing to have.
Keep in mind, a +5 bonus to Stealth and Perception is absolutely nothing to turn your nose at. Whoever is keeping watch during the rest will have a much better time for it! They’ll have the benefit of a hidden campfire for light plus the bonus to their Perception! Going from rolling at disadvantage to rolling at a +5 is a pretty big jump.
If your party is setting up camp somewhere, it’s a safe bet that they will build a fire. Taking a rest is not just flopping down somewhere and going to sleep. You need fire, food, drink and a bedroll. Hearth of Moonlight and Shadow prevents your fire from attracting curious creatures or enemies.
So, in general, spells like Tiny Hut that provide shelter are probably going to be more useful than this ability. But that doesn’t mean that may not have situations where this can really shine!
All in all, it’s my only real complaint about the Circle of Dreams Druid. But you win some, you lose some, right?
Speaking of winning some and losing some, Hidden Paths is a definite “win” of a feature!
At 10th level, the Circle of Dreams Druid can use secret fey passageways to get around. This ability is like Misty Step on steroids and, like Balm of the Summer Court, only takes a bonus action! Even better, you can still use a spell for your action since this is a class feature.
Using Hidden Paths, you can teleport 60ft away to an unoccupied space that you can see as a bonus action. If you prefer, you can use an action to teleport a willing creature 30ft away to a point that you can see.
This is a powerful “get out” ability, but it can also be used to quickly close the distance to heal a wounded ally, stop a fleeing enemy, or navigate a perilous obstacle.
Because you can use this ability a number of times equal to your Wisdom modifier, you’ll be able to get some solid mileage out of this between long rests. Realistically, by level 10, your Wisdom should be 18 or 20 which means that you’ll be able to use this 4 or 5 times per day.
Not too shabby at all!
Walker in Dreams
The Circle of Dreams Druid’s final ability at level 14 is definitely an interesting one with plenty of utility options.
Whether you are traveling mentally or physically through the Dreamlands, this ability lets you cast one of three spells for free at the end of a Short Rest. These castings are special and don’t require you to use a spell slot or have material components.
Your first option is the Dream spell with yourself as the messenger. This can be used for relaying information back to specific people or for some more mischievous ends if used on an enemy.
If you’d prefer a bit of eavesdropping, you may choose to use Walker in Dreams to cast the Scrying spell. If the party is moving ahead and wants to spy on the Boss, this can give them some very useful intel.
Alternatively, you may want to use this Scrying to check back on friends, family, or a specific location. It’s a free Scry, so why not?
Lastly, the Druid’s Walker in Dreams ability gives them a special use of Teleportation Circle.
With Walker in Dreams, the Druid can open a portal to the last place that they finished a long rest. This place has to have been on the same plane of existence, but it can greatly speed up the party’s travel.
The Circle of Dreams Druid has one foot in the Feywild and the other in the Prime Material plane.
When looking to connect a Druid of this subclass into the game, consider how this impacts their personality, background, and goals.
How did they come to discover a location’s ties to the Feywild? Were they mentored by a friendly Dryad or did they perhaps find themselves partying with a group of Satyrs?
What if, as a child, the character grew up playing with Pixies near their village only to later be introduced to the Feywild itself?
There’s no shortage of ways that a character could find themselves connected with the Feywild through fortune or fate. For a Circle of Dreams Druid, this connection will play a major part in roleplaying their character.
Is the Circle of Dreams Druid Good?
So, is the Circle of Dreams Druid actually good and worth playing?
I would say that it is absolutely worth playing and is a valuable addition to your party. Mixing in the Druid’s utility and adaptability with the ability to drop heals with Balm of the Summer Court and blink around the map with Hidden Paths is crazy useful.
The Circle of Dreams Druid is perfect for those who would like to take a healing and support role in the party.
Conclusion – Circle of Dreams Druid
In many discussions I’ve read or been a part of, this subclass seems to be commonly overlooked and underrated. To be honest, I had largely overlooked it as well for quite some time.
But playing a Circle of Dreams Druid was one of the most fun experiences I’ve had in D&D 5e. There is so much opportunity for the Feywild to creep into the story through this class that can add even more wonder to any game.
It might be a bit more linear than most of the other Druid subclass options, but that’s hardly a bad thing. The Circle of Dreams Druid delivers some great value to any party that they join.
And speaking of delivering some great value…
Don’t forget to check out our Complete Druid Guide for D&D 5e! It covers everything you need to fully channel the power of nature on your adventures!