Question: Why not just port the Druid class over from the AEC?
I thought about it, and decided to make it my own as a creative exercise and because I want to impart a slightly different flavor to the class.
Some spells will make the jump of course. Of the first level spells here are some thoughts.
Entangle seems to be a favorite for most players because of the power it has to stop large numbers of enemies or powerful enemies from moving and as a first level spell it is amazingly potent. I considered bumping it to second level since the wizard elf equivalent Web is a second level spell. After reviewing I decided to leave it as is and to have it make the jump since it is limited to when/where it works.
One of the things about Entangle that crossed my mind is how would you rule on it in desert environments or on/in aquatic environments? It could be done, but you would definitely want to make the player work out the details so that they made some sense and had the right flavor. As written it appears to require verdant plantlife to function. Would you create variant spells for the other environments?
It would be nice to have some feedback from readers on what to do about Entangle and why.
Faerie Fire looks like a good candidate for the jump. It is flavorful and helpful without being overpowered.
Animal Companion, like Find Familiar, can lead to abuses unless the players are willing to police themselves by sticking to the intent of the spell and not selling out to the abusive potential. I might bump this one to second level or make it a class ability with limitations. Nothing is decided for it yet.
Detect Snares & Pits is simple in design and intent. This one makes the jump.
Inisibility to Animals could be an interesting spell to use at the right times though I wonder if it should be bumped to second level. More thought required on this one.
Pass Without Trace is a spell I have never seen a player select, but the potential for what can be done with it is interesting to ponder. Also, since a simple detect magic spell could be used to determine that "something magic happened here" and allow for being followed anyway, it isn't in the easy to abuse category.
Purify Water makes the jump. It is a no brainer.
Shillelagh, I was on the fence about this before rereading it. I had considered creating a replacement spell, but I've come to appreciate the useulness and flavor of the spell. It jumps.
Speak With Animals, the character is a druid after-all. :)
It looks like the number of new spells I need to invent for level one will be very few.