Balance Leveling v.2.0.1
Okay, so now that the new talents are out, Balance looks like it is finally a viable leveling build, especially at higher levels (40+). Keep in mind that you should shift to bear form and dps when you are low on mana to reduce downtime, until you get Moonkin form and can mele in moonkin for the mana proc. At very low levels, you may not have a lot of mana, so remember that you don't lose your other forms just because you have points in this tree. Keep plenty of water and drink as needed. Keep in mind that your gear matters a lot as a caster (so read parts of section 6 & 7 that apply to balance).
Balance Tree (so you wanna be a Moonkin):
Level 10-14 = 5/5 Starlight Wrath (reduces the casting time of wrath and starfire)
This is an important talent. Faster casting time means you can do more damage in a shorter amount of time.
Level 15 = 1/1 Nature's Grasp
A buff that has a 35% chance to cast roots when someone hits you. This increases your survivability by having an instant-cast roots (on a cooldown timer). This is a great talent for PvP servers, but I recommend not maxing it out all the way, especially at very low levels.
Lvl 16-17 = 2/2 Improved moonfire (increases damage and crit chance of moonfire by 10%)
This is a good talent investment for increasing your overall damage. Remember not to spam moonfire. You want to let the dot tick. Wrath should still be your primary ¡°nuke¡± until you get starfire. They reduced the number of talent points this cost, so it is an excellent investment now.
Lvl 18-19 2/2 Focused Starlight (increases crit strike chance of wrath and starfire by 4%)
More crits means more damage, and you need this talent to unlock Vengeance in a couple levels.
This leaves you as 10/0/0 for the 10-19 WSG.
Lvl 20 = 1/1 Insect Swarm (Does damage over 12 sec)
Having another damage spell (which also decreases your attacker¡¯s chance to hit you) is always a good thing. At this level, you also pick up starfire. So, you now have more tools to help you defeat your opponent.
Lvl 21-22 = 2/2 Nature¡¯s Reach (increases range of your balance spells)
Being able to attack from further away is always good, and this is really your best option for point placement at this point, since Brambles isn¡¯t very helpful, especially at low levels.
Lvl 23-24 = 2/3 Control of Nature (reduces the chance of your roots spell to be interrupted by 70%)
If you root opponents a lot, it is good to invest in the talent that will keep it from being interrupted. You could also put 2 more points in Nature's Grasp if you prefer. I wouldn't recommend taking Brambles at lower levels, however it may be a good investment for higher levels. These two points are a matter of choice.
Lvl 25-29 = 5/5 Vengeance (increases crit strike damage)
This increases your critical strike damage. Normal crits do 50% more damage, so you increase your crit damage to doing twice your normal damage. With all the talents to increase your crit chance lower in the tree, this becomes even better.
Lvl 30 = 1/1 Nature¡¯s Grace (reduces your casting time after a crit)
With all your crits doing big damage, your next spell will cast faster, further increasing your overall damage output. This is a really great talent to have. This also means that as you get higher level, you should look for +spell crit on your gear.
Lvl 31-33 = 3/3 Moonglow (reduces the mana cost of 6 spells)
Since balance druids are known for going Out Of Mana, reducing your mana costs means you can cast more spells before you need to drink. This effects your main damage and heal spells, making this a great well-rounded talent.
Lvl 34-36 = 3/3 Lunar Guidance (increases your +damage/heal by your int)
Intellect should be your main stat at this point, so you will get 25% of your intellect as +spell damage & healing. This is a great talent at high levels, for sure, so you may as well take it now.
Lvl 37-39 = 3/5 Moonfury (increases the damage of starfire, moonfire, and wrath)
This increases the damage done by your 3 main damage spells. It scales with +damage from gear (finally). Three talent points here gives you enough points to unlock¡
Lvl40 = Moonkin form
Here¡¯s the big feathery form you have been waiting for. Remember that as a moonkin, you can bandage (as well as drink potions) in moonkin form, so leveling first aid and having a stack of health potions will reduce the number of times you will need to shift out to heal yourself.
Here¡¯s what your build would look like at this point.
Lvl 41-42 = 2/2 Balance of Power (increases your chance to hit with spells by 4%)
Increasing your +hit at this point would be a good idea. It decreases the number of spell resists you will have, and actually increases the probability of roots lasting longer. It also decreases the chance that you will be hit with spells.
Lvl 43-44 5/5 Moonfury
Don¡¯t forget to go back and finish maxing out moonfury for 2 more points.
Lvl 45- 47 3/3 Dreamstate (Regen 10% of your intellect)
You are OOM no longer, with mana regen based on your intellect. If you have 300 intellect, it would give you back 30 mana every 5 seconds.
This is the divergence point for Balance druids. At this point, you can either go into restoration to pick up intensity, or keep investing points in Balance to get treants. However, my personal recommendation is to pick up treants first.
Here are what my favorite final build would look like at level 70 to work towards:
48/0/13 (max damage and mana regen)
This is similar to the the build I used to level up from 60-70. It's more pve than pvp oriented.
48/0/13 (pvp oriented)
Similar to the above build, but more pvp oriented. Notice that both these builds have intensity, which is a great tool when combined with the balance tree for helping you be a BOOMkin and not an OOMkin.
34/0/27 (healer dps hybrid)
This is my current post-70 build. I use it for healing in raid instances, 5-mans, and for dps in both instances and solo. I haven't tried it in pvp. I'd recommend a more damage-focused build for pvp. This is a great alternative build for people who are required to heal, but still want to be dps viable.
If you just can't give up Nature's Swiftness, but want a little more dps edge than the spec above. (can put points in Nature's Focus instead of subtlety for PvP).
44/0/17 (Stian's Raid DPS build) - subtlety will now reduce the threat generated by healing AND damage spells, making this an important talent for raiding moonkin druids. As Stian is an authority on end-game moonkin dps, I will let the expert's spec speak for its' self.