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I noteced that there's a topic on the usefulness of rangers of druids in MM6 and MM7 (and apparently they're actually good in at least one of those games), and have been thinking about them in earlier games, which I am more familiar with.

Personally, I found that:
* In MM3, you want the Walk on Water spell, and a ranger is good for that purpose. While rangers and druids do get some unique spells, the other unique spells aren't that important, and they don't get Power Cure, making them pretty much useless as healers later on.
* In Xeen, they don't get any unique spells, instead getting most spells that cost 10 (or 2/level) or less; I see this as fine for a ranger (who can fight decently well), but not good for a druid. One thing that I find rather obnoxious is that you can't even replace your sorcerer/archer with one, as, for whatever reason, druids don't get Teleport, even though it costs less than 11 and is mandatory in MM4 (as in, you can't beat the game without some way to cast it).

So, what are your thoughts?
I agree. In MM3 they are very useful due to the Walk on Water spell, but their usefulness is really limited to that.

In Xeen I tend to like Rangers but not Druids. The spells can get really expensive if you are a completionist though, double the cost for Rangers and a huge array of spells to buy.

Druids are a nice idea that can be a useful character in a party, but don't really excel above any other character types in any areas.

I think they found the right balance for druids in MM6, very strong in most spellcasting but cannot access Light and Dark magic. In every other game, they have a crippling limitation which makes them terrible by the end of the game.