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Zeldyrr

Frost Mage Discussion [Cataclysm]

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Discussion in the simulators thread have lead me to have a couple of questions. I'd like to clarify this in the OP so I want to make sure I get it right.

When using mage armor, it would seem mana is of no concern or of very little concern. So while normally switching armors mid-fight is too mana inefficient to consider, this opens up a unique possibility for frost mages. Start with molten armor for the extra crit and then when mana starts to run out switch to mage armor and in essence freeze mana level at that point for the remainder of the fight. My questions:

  1. Are there any reasons the ideal approach would be more complicated? I've seen suggestions to switch more than once during a single fight. Other than matching molten armor with say time warp, what would be the benefit of doing this? To match with a burn phase in a particular encounter?
  2. If one is switching between molten and mage, how does the Glyph of Molten Armor rate? Obviously this is a more complicated question because of variability in molten armor uptime, but is it close enough to matter or will Glyph of Frostbolt always win?
  3. When gear levels reach the point where one can hit 33% crit raid buffed, will this approach still be viable? Meaning, would one gear differently/reforge to reduce crit so that molten armor is still useful? Or would one let molten armor (and glyph?) bring the crit raid above the soft cap? Drop the glyph to get the benefit of Glyph of Frostbolt but still use the 3% from molten armor?

I will update the OP with a section on this once I have a better understanding and can communicate it clearly.

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Is there any good place to test specs and rotations in game?

My reason for asking this is because I went to the target dummies in Org to tweak some rotations as frost against the 85 boss dummy. When I used Deep Freeze I was surprised to see that the dummy actually froze! I am pretty sure that raid bosses don't freeze, and the damage from the DF is very important to DPS as a mage.

So, I ask again. Is there a good place to test talents/rotation outside of a raid?

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The spell rotation should be altered to reflect the start of a fight, and the difference between having FFO active and not. Let me elaborate:

At the start of a fight, use the following exact spells.

Freeze+DF>MI>FFO>Prioritylist now applies.

Priority list

1. FFO on cd

2. DF on cd

3. FFB with BF if FoF is up.

4.1 FFO is active: Lance all FoF procs away.

4.2 FFO inactive, DF coming off cd and no Freeze: Get 2 stacks of FoF for potential BF proc + DF

4.3 FFO inactive, DF on cd: Lance when having more than 1 FoF proc (Maintain 1 FoF proc for BF procs)

5. Freeze on cd, if FoF is not active.(lance all FoF procs away before using)

6. Frostbolt

Explaination:

Freeze+DF before FFO at the start is because you need to be positioned to use FFO. Mirror Images right after makes sure you wont die if you got aggro. When FFO is active, you will be generating FoF procs very fast, if you cap out that's potential dmg lost. But when FFO is NOT active, you should try having 1 FoF proc up for instantly using BF procs and DF on cd. The obvious reason for this is that Freeze and DF don't share cd, and it's very possible using DF on cd and Freeze on cd which by my logic should maximize dps, instead of wasting 5 seconds of freeze cd every time. There is the odd chance that you'll get a BF proc just when DF is about to be off cd. that's where you should be having 2 FoF procs if possible. This is easily controllable when FFO is not active

These are my concerns, I'm not aware if you've calculated with "smartstacking" of FoF procs depending on what's available, but it seems not. The relative value of stats will be shifted slighty in favor of mastery(more FoF's with freeze) and haste will be less interesting because you'll do more Lances and less Frostbolts. The correct rotation will therefore reflect on stat values which is important when gearing.

Besides this i pop IV on my first FB cast, rougly after 4 globals. I try to use my Cold Snap after the first DF+FFO+IV has been used if I don't need IB for the encounter. If i do need IB I'll save my Snap till after the second FFO has been used. Or if a long fight after my second IV.

Can some rules be applied to the most optimal usage of IV, Snap etc.

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I'm posting for the first time even though i've been reading these forums for about 5 years now. I did see a post in page 13 of the frost cataclysm discussion thread where it was talking about how blizzard possibly fixed it so you don't need a macro any more to maximize the waterbolt casts from your WE. I was just checking to get clarification if that is the case or if it is still better to use the macro to up the number of waterbolt casts your WE will put out. But i thought if it is still a dps increase to macro in a pet attack to your main nuke that you might include some of this in the OP. The big majority of thr discussion for the different macro's you could use to accomplish this were on page 6 of the Frost cataclysm discussion thread. Even if it isn't a dps increase any more it might be good to include it as well because of the usefulness they provide in micro managing your pet better.

Thanks for all the awesome work you guys do on figuring all this stuff out. Some of you are very amazing at math and programming to determine all this information. I honestly think blizzard steals info from here to help analyze all the changes they go through. Good job guys keep it up :D

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I would do something different in the starting rotation.

It´s a good DPS increase if you use your "on use spellpower" trinkets or the orc racial at the beginning so 2 deepfreezes and 2 FFO´s benefit from that 2500~ Bonus Spellpower.

Starting Rotation should look like this :

On youse Trinket / Orc Racial

MI

Freeze

DF

FFO

IV

Coldsnap

DF

FFO

....

IV if it fells off

Is there already some math about Haste vs Mastery if you are below 33% crit ?

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One area that I’m wondering about is the current priority of stats for a Frost Mage. While I see an explanation in the opening post for Mastery, I don’t see where it fits into in terms of value for a Frost Mage).

Would it go something like this?

Hit (to cap)

Crit (to 33.33ish %)

Mastery

Haste

Right now I realize that gear choices are very limited and it’s still difficult to cap Hit but that won’t always be the case so I’m looking for something a bit more long term. So taking that into account, Hit to cap (or as close to cap without sacrificing large amounts of other stats) is the obvious number one priority. After that I’m not as certain where things stand. Crit to about 33.33% seems to vital as this guarantees crits on frozen targets (where a lot of our damage comes into play). But Mastery throws me since I’m not sure how the numbers work out and I’m not sure how important it is for us. Finally Haste I know is one of our lowest priorities as the only spell it really benefits is Frost Bolt.

So does my priority list look right or should it be rearranged with the new arrival of Mastery. Mastery seems fairly powerful for us (compared to some classes) since our major source of damage is on FoF Ice Lances, Deep Freezes and Brain Freezes.

Thanks,

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Based on experimentation with SimC, it doesn't take much of an increase in one rating to push the value of another rating up over it. You add (e.g.) Mastery, and everything else becomes more valuable relative to Mastery. When I was playing around with the profiles, I found on a number of occasions that if Haste was higher than Mastery, and i switched one gem or reforge to reduce Mastery and increase Haste, that would be enough to make Mastery worth more than Haste.

Best thing you can do is experiment with your gear in SimC or another tool when you get an upgrade, and see how the numbers play out. I don't think a simple guideline is going to cut it, at least not in T11 content.

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I've been going over the talent spec outlined in the opening post, and I have a few questions:

In theory, 2 points in Reactive Barrier would help in survivability, however, I have seen that post #13 by Light4 is correct: Ice Barrier will not automatically activate if you have a spell in queue. In practice, this is hardly ever the case, and it does not activate after the current spell queued goes off, which makes these points completely wasted.

I moved those two points around a few times and finally settled on maxing Enduring Winter. I had thought to split the two points between EW and Permafrost, but I decided against it for the following reasons:

1) Each of the first two points in EW gain a 3% reduction in mana cost, but the third jumps to 4%, for a total of 10%. I saw a big difference in mana efficiency when I took the third point, and I have had no problems using Molten Armor in place of Mage Armor and still being mana efficient over time.

2) I have not had any problems with AoE raid damage dropping my Water Elemental, at least not that more points in Permafrost could cure. 1 point here has worked sufficiently to extend the pet's life in all situations it wouldn't die regardless of the Permafrost bonus.

I have not been able to sufficiently test the effect of the 100% proc to mana regen for the raid. It seems to have a cooldown, but I haven't been able to find out how this works, and I haven't seen this answered in previous threads.

Another question I had was about Frostfire Orb. I have tried those points in both FFO and Ice Shards, and come to the conclusion that, as far as I can see, Ice Shards procs FoF and BF at least as much using Blizzard as FFO, and seems to do more damage over a wider area.

The only issue I can see is your ability to react to the procs. Since Blizzard is a channeled spell, you have to wait until the spell ends to gain the most benefit, and that can keep your procs sitting for precious seconds. I've tested it enough to know that using Blizzard in place of FFO is a DPS drop, but I'm wondering if it's acceptable for the utility gain?

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Another question I had was about Frostfire Orb. I have tried those points in both FFO and Ice Shards, and come to the conclusion that, as far as I can see, Ice Shards procs FoF and BF at least as much using Blizzard as FFO, and seems to do more damage over a wider area.

FFO is not an AOE spell. It hits a single target (fairly hard) and has 15 chances to proc BF and FoF which is another substantial DPS increase. Compared to Blizzard it uses very little mana and doesn't require channeling.

You definitely want the FFO talent and you want to cast your FFO every minute with an additional orb after a timed cold snap. My raiding time in Cata has so far been limited but I've found it best to use cold snap to get a second FFO when Time Warp is activated. It lets one use all those extra FoF procs as fast as possible (and there is less chance of losing a proc to a double stack).

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With an average ilvl of 342, I have 16% hit and 19% crit. Granted, my haste and mastery are quite low, since the little that appears on my gear is all reforged into hit and crit, and I also rely on a trinket for a good deal of my hit rating. I could theoretically glyph for molten armor and drop a percent of crit to reach both hit and crit cap.

Then you have a lot of loot luck. Here is a rough table with the item points per 346 item (note: these values are rounded and approixmated - but you will find two secondary stats with roughly these values on 346 gear:

[table=head]Slot|Points

head| 170

neck| 112

shoulder| 130

back| 112

chest| 200

wrist| 112

main hand| 100

off hand| 112

wand| 60

hands| 130

waist| 150

legs| 200

feet| 150

ring| 112

trinket| 270

[/table]

So this gives you roughly 170+112+130+112+200+112+100+112+60+130+130+150+200+150+112+270 = 2250 (2632 with two trinkets and rings) available points from gear. So if you just have crit/hit on gear it is easy to reach the 1742 for hit and ~2000 points for crit. However the moment you get gear with haste and/or mastery (and there is a lot of gear with at least one of these stats out there) you lose 60% of those values.

So for eaxmple haveing feet, wrist, shoulder, waist and trinkets without the desired stats gives you: 2250- (150+112+130+150+270) = 2250 - 812 = 1438

Now you can reforge and save 40% of the stats 812*.4 = 324.8 and 1438+324 = 1762 which would push you just over the hit cap but under the crit cap.

Of course gems and enchants make it easier, but as soon as you have 7-8 pieces of gear without hit *and* crit a secondary stats it gets difficult to reach both caps.

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Something sneaky that actually works pretty well on raid encounters where you have adds that needs to go down fast and have high hp. Works well on for example Magmaw larvas and Maloriak adds. Not so well on Chogall (10) cause the adds have to little HP (the FFB kills the target).

I run a off spec like this: Talent Calculator - World of Warcraft

Use blizzard to fish for FFB and Impact (comes very fast). Use the instant BF (with FoF) and spread the ignite with impact.

Its no where near fire aoe but its something.

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Since we should reach 100% crit while under FoF, how much paperdoll crit do we need, i.e. which crit buffs are tripled by the shatter talent?

I wonder, because Rawr is optimizing for 33.34% crit total, including all buffs and debuffs. Is that correct, that also crit chances due to debuffs on the target are tripled? Because then, at least for 25Man, reaching the crit softcap is trivial.

On a side note: Is the 1.8% crit chance reduction applied before or after shatter?

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Deep freeze scales exceptionally well, and due to its cooldown one would assume it is better to line it up with cooldowns and procs. What is the most amount of time I should delay casting a deep freeze after it comes off cooldown while waiting for these common trinkets to proc: Darkmoon Card: Volcano, Theralion's Mirror (1926 mastery), Bell of Enraging, Resonance / stump of time (1926 SP), and Power torrent (500 int)?

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Frost

•Deep Freeze's base damage has been reduced by 20%, from [ 1447 to 1814 ] to [ 1157 to 1451 ].

•Fingers of Frost now also increases Ice Lance damage by 15%.

•Frost Specialization now also increases the damage of Frostbolt by an additional 15%.

Using Lhivera's ilvl 359 Simcraft output and some rough napkin math for a 5 minute patchwerk style fight:

DF currently hits for ~85000 and is cast about 11 times, so ((85000 -(85000 * .8)) * 11)/ 300s = 623.33 dps loss.

FoF IL currently hits for ~23500 and is cast about 38 times, so (((23500 * 1.15) - 23500) * 38)/ 300s = 446.5 dps gain.

FrB currently hits for ~10500 and is cast about 142 times, so (((10500 * 1.15) - 10500) * 142)/ 300s = 745.5 dps gain.

So 446.5 + 745.5 - 623.33 = ~569 dps gain. These changes should close the gap between frost and fire.

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Using Lhivera's ilvl 359 Simcraft output and some rough napkin math for a 5 minute patchwerk style fight:

DF currently hits for ~85000 and is cast about 11 times, so ((85000 -(85000 * .8)) * 11)/ 300s = 623.33 dps loss.

FoF IL currently hits for ~23500 and is cast about 38 times, so (((23500 * 1.15) - 23500) * 38)/ 300s = 446.5 dps gain.

FrB currently hits for ~10500 and is cast about 142 times, so (((10500 * 1.15) - 10500) * 142)/ 300s = 745.5 dps gain.

So 446.5 + 745.5 - 623.33 = ~569 dps gain. These changes should close the gap between frost and fire.

In the latest patch notes on mmo-champion it says the following:

Frost Specialization now also increases the damage of Frostbolt by an additional 15%. However, if will decrease your Frostburn mastery by 6.

I don't have any math to back it up, but that last bit seems like a nerf, since it pretty much halves my mastery (from 12 or 13 to 6 or 7).

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Using Lhivera's ilvl 359 Simcraft output and some rough napkin math for a 5 minute patchwerk style fight:

DF currently hits for ~85000 and is cast about 11 times, so ((85000 -(85000 * .8)) * 11)/ 300s = 623.33 dps loss.

FoF IL currently hits for ~23500 and is cast about 38 times, so (((23500 * 1.15) - 23500) * 38)/ 300s = 446.5 dps gain.

FrB currently hits for ~10500 and is cast about 142 times, so (((10500 * 1.15) - 10500) * 142)/ 300s = 745.5 dps gain.

So 446.5 + 745.5 - 623.33 = ~569 dps gain. These changes should close the gap between frost and fire.

True but it would close the gap with 4.0.1 fire, remember that fire DPS is also getting buffed in 4.0.6 with a slight buff to mastery and a significant reduction in mana costs of FB and LB.

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Looks like they updated the patch notes since I left work, but i think that the decrease of the mastery will only apply directly to frostbolt's damage to frozen targets. This will be a PvE buff, but while not being overpowered in PvP. This is just speculation at this point until we get some data from the PTR.

There has been a bluepost to clarify the changes and it boils down to something that shouldn't affect PvE a lot because the mastery nerf gets countered by the fact that a FoF IL doesn't lose damage when compared to live.

We did buff Frost Bolt. And we did buff Ice Lance when Fingers of Frost is up. However, we've decreased all Frost damage to Frozen targets by about 15% from previous values. The net result is intended to be that Frost Bolt is a little better against non-Frozen targets, and about the same versus Frozen targets. Ice Lance with FoF is still good, but Ice lance damage against Frozen targets is down a bit.

The intent isn't to nerf PvE frost at all, but instead reward Frost Bolt use in PvP a bit more, and reduce the damage and effectiveness of Ice Lance in PvP.

The important take away here is that datamined changes from pre-release builds and tests are not accurate ways for you to get information on intended game adjustments. Take it with a grain of salt, and approach it with a giant cup of curiosity.

Source

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DF currently hits for ~85000 and is cast about 11 times, so ((85000 -(85000 * .8)) * 11)/ 300s = 623.33 dps loss.

If I read this correctly you reduced DF total damage by 20%. The patchnote reads reduced base damage.

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Some thoughts about the upcoming changes:

- As Frostbolt damage increases by 15%, Glyph of Frostbolt will also award more dps.

- As Deep Freeze base damage is decrease by 20% and effected by 15% less damage from mastery, Glyph of Deep Freeze will also award less dps.

- Ice Lance damage stays about the same.

100*((105+x)/(120+x))*1.15 should be the formular where x is the additional mastery from your character. E.g. with 5 additional mastery IL will do 1,2% more damage now. Correct me if I'm wrong

- Frostfire Bolt is also effected by 15% less damage from mastery. (Glyph of Frostfire Bolt awards slightly less dps.)

- Thus Ignite will also be effected

- Frost_Frostfire is no longer a reasonable build for PvE.

Overall I'm pretty sure this patch is a nerf to Frost even if it wasn't intended.

Edit:

Blizzard + Petnova will also have it's damage decreased until the nova breaks. I've used this regularly on Magmaw, Cho'Gall and sometimes with Maloriak and Halfus.

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I just calculated the following using the latest 'Basic' SimC results from Lhivera:

Deep Freeze base damage change: average DPE lost = (3261-2608)/2 = 326.5. In the total fight this means (326.5*10.8)/300s = 11.75 dps loss.

Ice Lance increase: 3647*1.15 = 4194 dps = 547 dps increase

Frostbolt increase: 7255*1.15 = 8343 dps = 1088 dps increase

Mastery change: affecting DF, IL, FFB and ignite: 215/235 (in this sim mastery is 14) = 0.9149

DF: 3794*0.787 (dps*crit%) = 2986 dps from crits. 2986*0.9149 = 2732 dps. 2986-2732 = 254 dps loss.

IL: 4194*0.927 = 3888. 3888*0.9149 = 3557. 3888-3557 = 331 dps loss.

FFB: 2349*0.777 = 1825. 1825*0.9149 = 1670. 1825-1670 = 155

Ignite: 957*0.9149 = 876. 957-876 = 81 dps loss.

Sum: 547+1088-12-254-331-155-81 = 802 dps increase.

I hope this rather simple math is correct and if it is, my worries were needless.

Potential changes in glyphs and/or gear and their influence on these results should still be subject of discussion.

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If I read this correctly you reduced DF total damage by 20%. The patchnote reads reduced base damage.

Remember that what MMO posts is not patch notes, and when it mentions base damage changes, it is almost always incorrect. Nearly every time, if not actually every time, that MMO-Champion has mentioned a "base damage" change since mid-Cataclysm beta, that change has also been accompanied by a matching coefficient change.

Also bear in mind that these changes are likely to skew ratings values somewhat. Gear adjustments may affect the final DPS gain or loss.

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I am sure this has been mention before soft crit is 33.4%.

However it seems that noone take the 2% crit resistance that all boss have in to consideration.

Therefore the soft crit should be 34% instead of 33.4%

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I just calculated the following using the latest 'Basic' SimC results from Lhivera:

Deep Freeze base damage change: average DPE lost = (3261-2608)/2 = 326.5. In the total fight this means (326.5*10.8)/300s = 11.75 dps loss.

Ice Lance increase: 3647*1.15 = 4194 dps = 547 dps increase

Frostbolt increase: 7255*1.15 = 8343 dps = 1088 dps increase

Mastery change: affecting DF, IL, FFB and ignite: 215/235 (in this sim mastery is 14) = 0.9149

DF: 3794*0.787 (dps*crit%) = 2986 dps from crits. 2986*0.9149 = 2732 dps. 2986-2732 = 254 dps loss.

IL: 4194*0.927 = 3888. 3888*0.9149 = 3557. 3888-3557 = 331 dps loss.

FFB: 2349*0.777 = 1825. 1825*0.9149 = 1670. 1825-1670 = 155

Ignite: 957*0.9149 = 876. 957-876 = 81 dps loss.

Sum: 547+1088-12-254-331-155-81 = 802 dps increase.

I hope this rather simple math is correct and if it is, my worries were needless.

Potential changes in glyphs and/or gear and their influence on these results should still be subject of discussion.

I might be wrong here but... isn't all damage against frozen targets reduced by 15%? This would mean that with 15% increased Ice Lance from FoF, IL damage doesn't change at all, yet you added it in the calculation there, how come?

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So, with the soft crit cap for Frost being 34% (taking crit suppression into account), does that means that we should aim for a 18% crit rating from gear/Piercing Ice if deciding to using glyphed Molten Armor?

18% +

1% from Kings/GotW, Flask of the Draconic Mind, Int food +

5% Elemental Oath (or similar) +

5% Critical Mass (or similar) +

5% Glyphed Molten Armor

Or have I made some multiplicative/additive maths mistake?

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