Recap-How Classes Work: In my book, a mysterious pulse of energy sent a young man named John into another world called Alendyias. This event resulted in John becoming Rorjon, a bluish ghost-like being (Kanyeri) that acts as a force of good, guiding, advising, and blessing the people of his new world (Alendyias). One of these blessings was based on John's love of RPGs like DnD, namely Classes. All Classes magically enhance one's potential (capacity), but only within the limits of their held Class. The level of this enhancement increases as the Class-holder grows and gains experience in their Class, and this increase is measured by Levels.
This question is about the Druid Class, which falls into the Mystic category. Like all Classes, this Class is almost invariably inherited or granted at birth, magically enhancing the holder's potential. However, since it's a Mystic Class, holders of this Class can cast spells. At the same time, Druids are best at (and best known for) one thing: shapeshifting.
Druids can speed, enhance, and manipulate the growth of plants, speed and enhance the growth of animals, heal, and "speak" to animals with their minds and hearts. That's what their spells concern: animals and plants. They can't turn people into animals (that's Witches and Wizards). That's the extent of their magical abilities.
Now, as for the shapeshifting: Alendyias has many different monsters (see Feasibility of Chomping Egg and Feasibility of Flailing Ooze), dinosaurs (dromaeosaurs, thero- and sauropods, ceratopsians, ankylosaurids, pterodactylids, and so forth) and classical additions like centaurs and manticores. Druids can become just about any of these, excepting creatures of such power as a beholder, aboleth, or red dragon (I used these DnD creatures as mere examples; I haven't copied them).
So, my question is: What Roles Would Druids Have In A Fantasy Society?
- Shapeshifters (and therefore Druids) are well suited for infiltration. Additionally, while Druids cannot become powerful magical creatures like a red dragon, normal creatures like a bear are plenty lethal; Druids may be ideal assassins and well-suited for combat with the right forms.
- I have a pretty good idea of what Druids can do: quickly tame and train animals, aid in crop and livestock production, act as healers, act as commanders for certain animals (war dogs?) on the battlefield, assassinate and infiltrate....my question is what I'm missing.
- Since most other Mystic Classes (Shaman, Witch/Wizard, and Sage) can take an animal or monster as their Familiar, a Druid can therefore become a Familiar. I'm curious to see what those in WB.SE make of this; I'm not entirely sure what will come of it.
- For those who are curious about numbers: Druids compose part of the Mystic 7%, one part of it, which means one out of 4 Mystics (there are four Mystic Classes) is a Druid. The European population changed from about 61 million to around 91 million, and that change occurred (I believe) in 400 years. So, let's assume a number of 81 million as our estimate; that means there are 5,670,000 Mystics and therefore 810,000 Mystics in each of the four Classes.