Because 3 aren't enough.

[Updated] Mage Rework – Talents and Specs

Evening!

This post will be about full mage tweaking. Since I cannot play a mage (I find them utterly old fashioned T_T), I decided to tune them up with the help of some mage colleages (Ardomnoth@Zul’jin-EU, Farelar@LosErrantes-EU) and our huggable warlock Vanderiel@Sanguino-EU.
The first thing I looked to was what was missing, what did not work well, what they needed, all in all, what needed changing. Tweaking a bit here, refurbishing a bit there, making Arcane more versatile and changing Frost’s mastery… are some aspects we changed.

So this is what came out:

[Updated]: this rework has been completely rehashed as of WoD (again) and greatly simplified as well.

If the full name is underlined, it’s all new. If some parts of the tooltips are underlined, these are new. If there’s no underlining, there’s no change.

[Talents]

Level 75: this row is highly problematic. It gives a DPS ability based on your spec, which in turn requires 3 skills per talent. The only thing that differs from Alpha’s talents is that Unstable Magic (which was very straightforward) and the Nova talents are gone. Instead, the Meteor talent from lvl 100 is brought here and a new one for summoning is provided, offering a funnier range of choice.

spell_arcane_arcanetactics [Summon]: summons a powerful magic entity based on your specialization that aids you in combat:

    • inv_mace_80 [Flaming Hydra (Fire)]: summons a three-headed flaming hydra to fight by your side. The hydra will spit fireballs to your current target, dealing x Fire damage each and 25% of that damage to all nearby enemies in 8 yd of the target. All damage caused by the Hydra causes Ignite. The Hydra lasts 30 sec active and will teleport to you if you get too far. 2 min CD.
    • achievement_boss_ichoron [Summon Water Revenant (Frost)]: summons a greater water elemental that fights by your side. The Water revenant inflicts x% more damage than your usual Water elemental and its Water bolts now have a chance of triggering Fingers of Frost and Brain Freeze. Lasts until killed. 1 min CD. Replaces Summon Water Elemental.
    • achievement_boss_algalon_01 [Simulacrum (Arcane)]: summons an astral image of yourself that copies the spells you cast. The copied spells deal half of your damage. Spells that can be copied are Arcane Explosion, Arcane Blast, Arcane Missiles and Arcane Barrage. The simulacrum cannot be selected as target and lasts 15 sec. 1 min CD.

ability_mage_netherwindpresence [Falling stars]: conjures a powerful projectile based on your specialization that strikes the target:

    • spell_fire_meteorstorm [Meteor (Fire)]: invokes a meteor that impacts after 3 sec, dealing x Fire damage and stunning all targets within 8 yd radius for 2 sec. Upon impact, ignites the ground on a 8 yd radius, dealing x extra Fire damage over 6 sec. Meteor deals x% extra critical damage depending on your critical hit chance. Inflicts 20% extra damage to units affected by Flamestrike. Causes Ignite. 45 sec CD.
    • spell_frost_ice shards [Comet Storm (Frost)]: calls down 7  icy boulders to impact on the target after 3 sec. Each boulder deals x Frost damage plus x% of your damage stored with Icicles split between all the enemies within the impact zone. 30 sec CD.
    • inv_enchant_essencearcanelarge [Arcane Orb (Arcane)]: launches an arcane forward from the Mage’s position, dealing x arcane damage to all enemies it passes through. Grants the Mage 1 Arcane Charge per enemy hit. Its cooldown is reduced by 1 sec everytime Arcane Missiles proc. 15 sec CD.

ability_mage_missilebarrage [Bomb]: casts a powerful periodic damage effect based upon your talent choice:

    • ability_mage_livingbomb [Living Bomb (Fire)]: the target becomes a Living Bomb, taking x Fire damage over 12 sec. When this effect ends, or the target dies, it explodes to deal an additional x Fire damage to up to all enemies within 10 yards.
    • Spell_mage_frostbomb [Frost Bomb (Frost)]: places a Frost Bomb on the target. After 4 sec, the bomb explodes, dealing x Frost damage to the primary target, and x Frost damage to all other targets within 10 yds. All affected targets are slowed by 70% for 2 sec. Frost Bomb’s countdown and cooldown are reduced by haste. Procs Brain Freeze after exploding. 1.5 sec cast. 10 sec CD.
    • Spell_mage_nethertempest [Nether Tempest (Arcane)]: places a Nether Tempest on the target which deals x Arcane damage over 12 sec. Each time Nether Tempest deals damage, an additional 50% of that damage is also dealt to a random target within 10 yds.

Level 90: this is probably the most problematic talent tier in the whole game. Although somewhat original, the current lvl 90 talents are overwhelmingly annoying to use (constantly channeling Evocation, standing on your Rune of Power or having to turn up your Incanter’s Armor) and simply don’t fit anywhere in a Mage’s toolkit. Instead, I suggest an alternative whole row. Superior Armors is a simple talent intended to add some more depth to Armor spells. Master of Elements (bringing back the old talent) looks like a simple yet powerful talent to use, but has to be very cautiously used so as not to burn all your mana too quickly. Incantation is similar to Superior Armors, but has a more direct impact on what you’re doing. I think this rehashed row would actually be much more interesting than the previous one, as well as allowing for some more complex building.

spell_arcane_arcaneresilience [Superior Armors]: empowers your mage armors to improve mana regeneration by 60% and spell damage caused by 10% and reduces their cast time to 1.5 sec:

    • ability_mage_moltenarmor [Superior Molten Armor (Fire)]: in addition to its other effects, amplifies the Mage’s critical hit chance and critical damage by x%.
    • spell_frost_chillingarmor [Superior Frost Armor (Frost)]: in addition to its other effects, amplifies the Mage’s multistrike by x% and reduces the cast time of Frostbolt by 0.2 sec.
    • spell_magearmor [Superior Mage Armor (Arcane)]: in addition to its other effects, amplifies the Mage’s mastery by x% and increases your mana pool by x%.

spell_fire_masterofelements [Master of Elements]: x% of all spell damage (including that from multistrikes) is converted to mana. Increases all spell damage dealt by 20%. However, passive mana regeneration is reduced by 75%.

inv_staff_95 [Incantation]: passively imbues your weapon with a powerful mage incantation, increasing spell damage by 15% and passive mana regeneration by 50%. In addition, grants a bonus based on your especialization:

    • inv_staff_85 [Fire]: anytime you cast Fireball non-critical hit, you obtain 3% extra critical hit chance with Fireball. Dealing a critical hit resets the cycle.
    • inv_staff_108 [Frost]: consuming Fingers of Frost and Brain Freeze reduces the cast time of your next Frostbolt by 0.2 sec and increases its chance to multistrike by x%. This effect stacks.
    • inv_staff_52 [Arcane]: whenever Arcane Missiles deal damage, there is a 30% chance to gain x Mastery for 3 sec. This effect stacks up to 5.

Level 100: Prolonged Exposure is currently an Alpha talent, which while simple, it is a very solid choice. Prismatic Crystal seems like a fun talent, except it might be tricky when targeting it, in any case, I’ve reworked it a bit, so that instead of just unleashing a burst of energy, it refracts the spell you broke it with, the rest of its design remains the same. Experimental Studies is a VERY complex talent, but that’s why it’s called ‘experimental’; it turns Fire into a channel/dot heavy spec; Frost is turned into a slower paced spec with an Ice Lance mechanic similar to Mistweaver’s Soothing Mist + Surging mist; and Arcane is turned into a more mobile and faster paced spec at melee range.

spell_arcane_studentofmagic[Prolonged Exposure]: causes some spells to alter the duration of your main spec cooldowns.

    • inv_elemental_mote_fire01[Kindling]: Critical Strikes from Fireball, Pyroblast and Inferno Blast reduce the remaining cooldown of Combustion by 1 sec.
    • spell_ice_rune[Thermal Void]: casting Ice Lance extends your Icy Veins by 2 sec.
    • spell_arcane_arcanetorrent[Arcane Overpower]: casting Arcane Missiles extends your Arcane Power by 2 sec.

inv_datacrystal02[Prismatic Crystal]: conjures a prismatic crystal at the target location, which is attackable by only the Mage, and takes 30% additional damage. When the crystal takes direct damage, it instantly releases a copy of the spell the Mage attacked the cristal with dealing that damage, split evenly between all enemies within 8 yards. The copies of the spell retain any secondary effects, like periodic damage or slow. Instant. 1 min CD.
inv_misc_book_11[Experimental Studies]: heavily alters the functioning of certain core spells.

    • spell_fire_flamebolt [Fire]: your Fireball turns into Flamethrower and Pyroblast turns into Disintegrate (Mastery – Ignite has been tweaked to make this possible).
      • ability_mage_firestarter [Flamethrower]: casts a flame tongue that burns up your enemy, dealing x Fire damage every over 2.5 sec (3 hits). Getting 2 periodic critical hits from Flamethrower pulses still trigger Hot Streak. Flamethrower retains all perks that buff Fireball. Deals slightly more damage than Fireball. 3 sec channeled. Replaces Fireball.
      • Ability_siege_engineer_purification_beam [Disintegrate]: focuses a beam of pure fire to pulverize your foes, causing x Spellfire damage every 1 sec for 6 sec. Disintegrate critical pulses may trigger Hot Streak (the same way Pyroblast can reactivate Hot Streak). Hot Streak causes Disintegrate to deal 25% more damage and be cast 50% faster (3 sec channel). Disintegrate retains all perks that buff Pyroblast. Pyroblast’s periodic effect is merged into Disintegrate’s damage. Deals slightly more damage than Pyroblast. 6 sec channeled. Replaces Pyroblast.
    • spell_frost_frostbolt02[Frost]: your Icicles no longer are launched automatically when casting Ice Lance or Icy Blast, but are used to empower Frozen Pulse. In addition, Frostbolt turns into Ray of Ice.
      • spell_frost_chillingblast[Ray of Ice]: pelts your target with focused cold, causing x Frost damage every 1 sec for 4 sec. Deals slightly more damage than Frostbolt. Its damage and movement reduction effect progressively increases over time. Generates Icicles. Ray of Ice retains all perks that buff Frostbolt. Its periodic damage may still proc Fingers of Frost. 4 sec channeled. Replaces Frostbolt.
      • spell_frost_frostshock[Frozen Pulse]: emits a pulse of cold energy, inflicting x Frost damage instantly to that target and 50% of that damage to all other nearby enemies. Deals 15% more damage if used while casting Ray of Ice. Frozen Pulse damage is quadrupled against frozen targets. Damage stored with Icicles increases the damage of Frozen Pulse. Frozen Pulse retains all perks that buff Ice Lance. Frozen Pulse consumes Fingers of Frost to be used. Instant. Replaces Ice Lance.
    • spell_holy_magicalsentry[Arcane]: your Arcane Blast turns into Arcane Slash and Arcane Missiles turn into Arcane Beat.
      • spell_arcane_arcane03[Arcane Slash]: creates a sweep of Arcane energy at melee range, causing x Arcane damage to your target and 30% of that to other 2 nearby enemies. Arcane Slash costs x% less mana and causes slightly less damage than Arcane Blast to fit its newly instant cast. Arcane Slash retains all perks that buff Arcane Blast. Generates 1 Arcane Charge. Instant. Melee range. Replaces Arcane Blast.
      • spell_arcane_arcane04[Arcane Beat]: launches a blast of surging Arcane power at your melee opponent, causing x Arcane damage. Arcane Beat charges cause x% more damage than your average Arcane Missiles’ pulse. Arcane Beat has a chance to be activated after each of your damaging spell casts, and every activation of Arcane Beat generates 3 charges, up to 6. Arcane Beat has no global cooldown and you can chain consecutive Arcane Beats rapidly. Generates 1 Arcane Charge per every 2 Arcane Beats used. Arcane Beat retains all perks that buff Arcane Missiles. Instant. Melee range. Replaces Arcane Missiles.

spell_holy_magicalsentry
[Arcane]

Passive bonuses:

spell_arcane_arcane01 [Arcane Charge]: an arcane charge, generated by Arcane Blast, Arcane Missiles, and consumed by Arcane Barrage. Arcane Charges stack up to 4 and last until consumed:

  • spell_arcane_blast Arcane Explosion – Generates 1 charge.
    Arcane Blast’s damage is increased by 50% per charge, its cast time reduced by 0.15 per charge and its mana cost is increased by 150% per Arcane Charge.
  • spell_nature_starfall Arcane Missiles – Generates 1 charge.
    Arcane Missiles’ damage is increased by 50% per charge and launches an extra missile per every 2 charges.
  • ability_mage_arcanebarrage Arcane Barrage – Consumes all charges.
    Arcane Barrage’s damage increases by 50% per charge, and it hits 1 additional nearby target per charge for 50% damage.
  • spell_nature_wispsplode Arcane Explosion – Has 10% chance per enemy damaged to generate 1 charge.
  • spell_nature_purge Evocation – Generates 4 charges on channeling.
    Evocation’s mana regeneration increases by 25% per charge.

inv_elemental_primal_mana [Sustenance]: your Mana Gems now activate automatically and grant mana over 6 sec. The first gem triggers when your mana is equal or less than 80%, the second at 50% and the third at 20%. All gems have a recharge time of 1 min. Upon activating one, no gem can be activated until 15 sec have passed. This is a base passive.

Active abilities:

spell_arcane_blast [Arcane Blast]: blasts the target with energy, dealing x Arcane damage. Generates an Arcane Charge. Arcane Blast’s damage is increased by 50% per Arcane Charge, its cast time reduced by 0.15 sec per Arcane Charge, and its mana cost is increased by 150% per Arcane Charge. 2 sec cast.

spell_nature_wispsplode [Arcane Explosion]: causes an explosion of arcane magic around the caster, causing x Arcane damage to all targets within 10 yards. Has a 10% chance to generate an Arcane Charge per enemy damaged. Instant.

spell_nature_starfall [Arcane Missiles]: launches five waves of Arcane Missiles at the enemy over 2 sec, causing x Arcane damage per wave. Generates an Arcane Charge. Arcane Missiles’ damage is increased by 50% per Arcane Charge and launches an extra missile per every 2 charges. Arcane Missiles has a 40% chance to be activated after each of your damaging spell casts. Limit 2 charges. Can be cast on movement.

ability_mage_arcanebarrage [Arcane Barrage]: launches bolts of arcane energy at the enemy target, causing x Arcane damage. Consumes all Arcane Charges. Arcane Barrage’s damage is increased by 50% per Arcane Charge, and it hits 1 additional nearby target per Arcane Charge for 50% damage. 3 sec CD.

CDs & other:

spell_nature_lightning [Arcane Power]: when activated, you deal 20% more spell damage and damaging spells cost 10% more mana to cast. This effect lasts 15 sec. 1.5 min CD.

Mastery:

spell_arcane_manatap [Mastery – Mana Adept]: increases all spell damage done by up to x%, based on the amount of mana the Mage has unspent.

[Fire]

Passive bonuses:

spell_nature_wispheal [Critical Mass]: multiplies the critical strike chance of your Fire spells by 1.3.

ability_mage_hotstreak [Hot Streak]: single-target direct-damage Fire critical strikes have a 5% chance to make your next Pyroblast instant cast, cost no mana, and deal 25% additional damage (this change is intended to fight undergeared lack of competitivity, while not affecting geared mages due to its small proc chance). Hot Streak triggers anytime you land 2 direct critical strikes in a row.

spell_fire_burnout [Pyromaniac]: all enemies affected by a Fire damage over time effect receive 10% more Fire damage. In addition, if you keep at least 2 damage over time fire effects on 3 or more enemies, the cast time of Fireball is reduced by 30%.

spell_fire_moltenblood [Purge]: Fire damage dealt to enemies whose health is at or below 30% is increased by 20%.

inv_elemental_primal_mana [Sustenance]: your Mana Gems now activate automatically and grant mana over 6 sec. The first gem triggers when your mana is equal or less than 80%, the second at 50% and the third at 20%. All gems have a recharge time of 1 min. Upon activating one, no gem can be activated until 15 sec have passed. This is a base passive.

Active abilities:

spell_fire_flamebolt [Fireball]: Hurls a fiery ball that causes x Fire damage. 2.25 sec cast.

spell_fire_fireball02 [Pyroblast]: hurls an immense fiery boulder that causes x Fire damage and an additional x Fire damage over 18 sec (See Hot Streak).

spell_fire_soulburn [Scorch]: scorch the enemy for x Fire damage. Can be cast on movement. 1.5 sec cast.

Spell_mage_infernoblast [Inferno blast]: blasts the enemy for x Fire damage. Upon impact, it spreads any Pyroblast, Ignite, and Combustion effects to up to 5 nearby enemy targets within 10 yards. Inferno blast is no longer guaranteed to crit. 8 sec CD.

spell_fire_selfdestruct [Flamestrike]: calls down a pillar of fire, burning all enemies within a 8 yd radius area for x Fire damage and an additional x Fire damage over 8 sec. In addition, a wave of flame radiates outward from the target location, slowing all enemies caught within the blast by 50% for 3 sec. Instant. 6 sec CD (was 12).

CDs & other:

spell_fire_sealoffire [Combustion]: Instantly deals x Fire damage and stuns the target for 3 sec. If the target is currently affected by your Ignite, it also burns the target for additional damage equal to the damage per tick of the Ignite every 1 sec for 15 sec (was 10). 1.5 min CD (was 45).

inv_misc_head_dragon_01 [Dragon’s Breath]: targets in a cone in front of the caster take x Fire damage and are disoriented for 4 sec. Any direct damaging attack will revive targets. 20 sec CD.

Mastery:

spell_fire_incinerate [Mastery – Ignite]: your target burns for an additional x% over 4 sec of the total damage caused by your direct-damage Fire spells (also Flamethrower and Disintegrate if specced into that). If this effect is reapplied, any remaining damage will be added to the new Ignite.

spell_frost_frostbolt02[Frost]

Passive bonuses:

spell_fire_frostresistancetotem [Hailstorm]: Blizzard is now instant, lasts 8 sec, and there can be multiple Blizzards at once. Its damage, however, will not increase if 2 or more Blizzards concur. Blizzard’s damage has a chance of reducing the cooldown of Frozen Orb by 1 sec if it hits at least 3 targets with a single Blizzard.

inv_elemental_primal_mana [Sustenance]: your Mana Gems now activate automatically and grant mana over 6 sec. The first gem triggers when your mana is equal or less than 80%, the second at 50% and the third at 20%. All gems have a recharge time of 1 min. Upon activating one, no gem can be activated until 15 sec have passed. This is a base passive.

Active skills:

spell_frost_frostbolt02 [Frostbolt]: launches a bolt of frost at the enemy, causing x Frost damage and slowing movement speed by 50% for 15 sec. 2 sec cast.

spell_fire_blueflamebolt [Icy Blast]: sends a bolt of chilling ice and snow that deals x Frost damage to the target and 50% of that damage to all nearby enemies within 8 yd radius and slows their movement speed by 70% for 2 sec. Generates 15 Cold. 2.5 sec cast. Replaces Frostfire Bolt.

spell_frost_frostblast [Ice Lance]: fires off an icy lance that deals x Frost damage to an enemy target. Ice Lance damage is quadrupled against frozen targets.

ability_mage_deepfreeze [Deep Freeze]: stuns the target for 5 sec. Only usable on Frozen targets. Deals heavy Frost damage to units that are permanently immune to immobilize and stun effects. Instant. 25 sec CD.

spell_frost_icestorm [Blizzard]: ice shards pelt the target area doing x Frost damage over 8 sec and slowing enemies by 50%. Its damage will not increase if 2 or more Blizzards concur. Blizzard’s damage has a chance of reducing the cooldown of Frozen Orb by 0.5 sec. Lasts 12 sec. Instant.

Spell_frost_frozenorb [Frozen Orb]: launches a Frozen Orb forward from the mage’s position, releasing Frostbolts that deal x Frost damage to all nearby enemy targets for 10 sec. Targets damaged by the Frost Orb are slowed by 30% for 2 sec. 1 min CD.

spell_frost_summonwaterelemental_2 [Summon Water Elemental]: summon a Water Elemental to fight for the caster. Casting Frostbolt on your Water Elemental will heal it for x health. 1.5 sec cast. 1 min CD.

CDs & other:

spell_frost_coldhearted [Icy Veins]: accelerates your spellcasting, granting 20% spell haste and reducing the pushback suffered from damaging attacks while casting by 100%. While Icy Veins is active, you are immune to silence and interrupt effects while channeling Ray of Ice. Lasts 20 sec. 3 min CD.

Mastery:

spell_frost_iceshard [Mastery – Icicles]: x% of all Frost damage you and your Water Elemental do is stored as an Icicle with you, for 30 sec. Also increases the damage of your Water Elemental’s Waterbolt by x%. Up to 5 Icicles can be stored at once. See tooltips to see Icicles’ interaction with spells. Damage stored by Icicles is now shown in a meter below mana bar.

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