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I am unsure on how to ask this question more spot on, so I am sorry in advance.

Looking through the different land circles the land druid gets at level 3, I found myself wondering why a lot of those spells are so repetitive and boring. Spider climb for example is in three circles, but wouldn't you want to choose a circle to be unique? Why use such a spell if you can use your wild shape as utility anyway?

To make it short: I want to create my own land circle Misty Peaks with

  • 3rd level mirror image, misty steps
  • 5th level lightning bolt, haste
  • 7th level ice storm, greater invisibility
  • 9th level conjure element, cone of cold

I am aware that I'm basically picking a few of the best spells presented in the given druid circles, but comparing this to being a dire wolf at level 3 or an air elemental at level 10 it seems rather modest. I tried to focus on spells not yet in the druid spell list and spells that I would probably cast often anyway, so I would get the benefit of freeing a spot of prepared spells at least most of the time. I could explain the reason for each individual spell in this circle, but I guess the picture is quite clear.

I got to be honest - I'm new to D&D and I was just really bored by the Moon Druid on paper and found the Land Circles unappealing. So far the GM has approved my idea, but would like to hear some opinions on this, as I don't want to influence the other players experiences. Knowing beforehand that what I am planning is not a good idea would be better, for example, than working out this circle and then changing it after some players complain in the long run.

The other players are a paladin and a fighter.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ If either the paladin or fighter complains, there's heat metal to sort that out. :-) \$\endgroup\$ – KorvinStarmast Jun 28 '17 at 20:45
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No, you didn't break the game

The simplest answer here is that no, creating a land circle does not automatically imbalance your game. The biggest factor here is, how versatile and effective are your other party members? If your paladin and fighter are also focusing heavily on optimizing themselves and being as effective as possible, then you shouldn't see any issues. Your DM can just put bigger harder challenges in front of you.

Sustained Imbalance is Bad

The potential problem comes if your circle imbalances the party. If this makes you twice as effective as the rest of your party at every level, then you're probably going to reduce the amount of fun had at your table. Your party mates and DM may become frustrated by how ineffective they seem.

Talk About It

The best advice I can give you is to talk about it with the other party members and your DM. I would also encourage you to be open to the idea of making changes after you see your abilities in play. You mentioned being fairly new to D&D so I'm going to assume most of your group is as well. This means you don't have a giant frame of reference. IF after a dozen sessions you seem vastly more powerful than your other party members, be ready and willing to adjust your circle spells to something a bit less powerful.

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There's nothing inherently imbalancing about creating your own Circle, and it can be a great way to give your Druid a theme of your choosing. This was covered in some depth in this question.

However, as you yourself have said, you've picked some of the best spells around for the custom Circle you've come up with. At that point you have to ask yourself why you're doing it.

The point I'm trying to make here is that while your concept is probably fine, I think you need to focus a bit more on making your list thematic rather than making it powerful. A mist-based Circle is a really cool idea, so why not do it properly? Spells like stinking cloud, gaseous form, and cloudkill all seem to fit better than, say, lightning bolt or haste. (Both of which really don't seem to fit.)

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    \$\begingroup\$ I agree that making the Circle fit a theme is every bit as important as making it mechanically useful. By the way, I'd mention that given the name "Misty Peaks" mountain-themed spells are appropriate too; the already-listed Ice Storm and Cone of Cold sound fine to me, for example. \$\endgroup\$ – El Suscriptor Justiciero Jan 5 '15 at 10:35
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It's fine balance wise. Moon is notably better than Land as a shape changer yet is only barely worse as a caster so Land could use some lovin'. Druids are behind other casters enough now that 2 spells of spell levels 2, 3, 4, and 5, esp. if only picked off the existing Circle type lists, won't catch them up to Bards or Wizards who are built well.

Additionally, consider asking your GM if he'll let you change into CR 2 creatures around level 16 or so. (Some of the CR2's can survive a hit at higher levels, it keeps your wild shape from being totally emergency combat useless.)

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    \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to RPG.se! Please take a look at the tour; it's a useful introduction to the site. Please don't attempt to reply to other answers; this is a Q&A site rather than a discussion forum, so answers are expected to respond to the question directly rather than attempting to engage in discussion with other answers. Once you've earned some reputation you will be able to post comments on others' Qs and As, and can use those to suggest fixes to other answers instead. You can amend your last paragraph using the edit feature on your post. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie May 28 '15 at 19:00

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