Pyroblast Ticks benefits from Empowered Fire as well. It quadruples the scaling actually, from 5% to 20% (5%+15%) per tick, with 4 ticks in total per cast.
3.3.3 gone live
Combustion Cooldown reduced to 2 minutes.
Burning Soul threat reduction improved to 10%/20%.
Glyph of Fireball reduces base cast time by -0.15s, like all other talents/effects. Haste applies afterwards.
Pyroblast will be affected by Torment the Weak (+12% multiplier) and Empowered Fire (+15% SP scaling, up to 130%).
Frostbolt Coefficient confirmed to be simply 3/3.5=85.7%. The 95% snare multiplier was dropped.
Brain Freeze makes Frostfire Bolt instant as well now, and removes the mana cost of the instant FB/FFB. Small cooldown added to prevent proc chains of instant FFBs.
Frostfire Bolt does not trigger Brain Freeze any more in order to prevent chain procs, due to technical issues with the cooldown.
Incanter's Absorption only procs from Mana Shield, Ice Barrier, Fire Ward and Frost Ward.
It was fun while it lasted, but nevertheless a trainwreck for game design and balance. It's mostly useless for PvE DPS now.
Arcane Power + Arcane Blast damage increase are additive. Having for a while, but I haven't really pointed it out specifically yet.
Many Proc Auras (Elemental Oath, Arcane Empowerment, Ferocious Inspiration) are now passive auras with a higher range.
Flamestrike DoT - is it affected by AoE caps? It never was before 3.3 at least.
Flamestrike Rank 9/8/7 - is rank 7 worth casting with a 2s cast time now?
I'm thinking about FS9/8/7-Blizz cycles during haste cooldowns, when you would have a lot clipping with FS9/8-Blizz by being above 50% haste.
Ashen Band of Unmatched Destruction has 60s cooldown, not 45s like modeled in Rawr. Proc rate 10%, uptime around 15%.
3.3 gone live
Flamestrike now beats nuke spells when it hits 2 targets already.
Acoording to Vontre, for Fire, Frost and presumably Arcane Specs. Assuming 8 seconds on the DoT duration.
Bug - Combat Log - No Hot Streak/Missile Barrage Notification.
Currently neither Hot Streak nor Missile Barrage are being reported in the combat log so all the addons that tracked the procs based on the combat log parses are currently broken. You can, however, still track it based on the actual buff gained by the player using a buff tracking addon such as Elk Buff Bars or Power Auras Classic.
Arcane Missiles now trigger Arcane Concentration every missile, but at a reduced rate. And Arcane Potency is said to affect only the first missile, from how I understand the notes. (Which has been like this for a while, I think.)
Enchant Weapon - Black Magic changed to 250 Haste Rating instead of a garbage DoT.
Confirmed Data: 10s duration, 35s cooldown. Proc rate most likely 35%.
With that behaviour, you have at least 30% uptime. It beats 68 SP on one-handers and is slightly below 81 SP on staves. Check Rawr, beware of Haste Caps.
T10 Set Bonuses are really good on paper, from what we know. Both are in the 4-5% region, easily obsoleting T9 and any off-set gear.
4T10 This 18% damage gain is multiplicative with all other damage increasing effects.
Best-in-Slot in T10 gear so far seems to be 4T10 with non-set Gloves or Leggings.
Deep Freeze does 2368-2635 damage + 7.5/3.5 * Spell Power to targets immune to stun (raid bosses).
Some talents don't work for it yet - may be intentional or oversight.
Glyph of Eternal Water makes the Water Elemental permanent, but removes its Freeze ability.
This also gives it raid buffs cast before combat (only benefit is crit from AI/BoK I think) and removes the GCD spent on summoning it in combat (1% DPS gain).
//Reverted Frozen Core make Ice Lance crits reduce the cast time of your next Frostbolt/Frostfire Bolt by 0.4s/0.7s/1s.
Improved Scorch doesn't stack anymore, it's a flat 5% crit.
Glyphof Scorch changed to increase Scorch damage by 20%.
Flamestrike cast time has been reduced to 2 seconds. For all ranks, finally.
Firestarter makes Flametrike free as well.
Arcane now has the +3% damage aura raid buff.
Mana Costs for some AoE spells have been reduced. And for low level spells as well.
Low-level spells with lower cast times got another reduction on top of that.
Level-1-Kiting might have been made more attractive. Check for details.
Pet Avoidance changed to -90% AoE damage taken from NPCs, for all pets of all classes.
Also, some boss abilities won't target them anymore. And it does nothing in PvP.
AoE Damage Caps changed to the damage you'd do hitting 10 targets. I.e. below 10 targets, your AoE does full damage. Above 10 targets, your AoE does "10/#targets" damage, i.e. 50% at 20 targets, 10% at 100 targets.
So, caps fully scale with gear and the absolute cap is always reached when hitting 10 targets.
Silence effects now also act as 3 second interrupts for NPCs.
Affects Blood Elven Magi (Arcane Torrent) and Interrupt Rotations/Strategies in raids in general.
Downranking Formula has officially been confirmed now.
Downranking_Factor = (spellmaxlevel+22-casterlevel)/20 and it's capped between 0% and 100%.
Spellmaxlevel is explained as "inconsistent, but around 4 levels higher than when you learn the spell". Basically, starting around 7 levels after you learn a spell of a certain rank, you'll lose 5% scaling every level until you receive nothing from spellpower 19 levels later.
Combustion increases critical strike bonus damage by 50%.
It's additive with Burnout/Ice Shards/Spell Power/4T7 and works the same way.
[Edit]: Combat behaviour of when charges are consumed and when the crit damage bonus is applied is a complete mess. Read the last few pages or do some testing.
Arcane Mechanics got an overhaul, check the Arcane Thread for details.
* AB4MBAM (AB spam, use MBAM on 4 stacks only) is the new standard cycle, it seems sustainable.
* AB Spam is the burn cycle, but rarely worth using. A 2% DPS increase at a 300% Mana Cost increase.
* Arcane/IV is 3% above Fire in stationary fights, 1% in movement fights. Arcane/Scorch is 1% below fire.
* All this may very well still change, since it's not really exciting nor does it reward thoughtful playing.
Pyromaniac grants 3% general spell crit, not just for fire spells. Likely has been for a while, but it now fully updated in the armoury and in-game stat screens.
Last Update August 9th 2009
* Set Bonus Estimates, T9, Gemming, Glyph
* Amplify/Dampen Magic Guidelines
Lightweave Embroidery Nerfed, the proc rate was changed to 35% (insignificant), and the internal cooldown was changed to 60 seconds, up from 45 seconds. Tailoring is still the best profession, but more in line with the rest of the professions now.
Hot Streak Bugs and Issues have condensed in a fix that makes Hot Streak work like pre-patch. Only consecutive crits of the direct damage spells count, LB DoT is completely ignored. Living is still castable on several targets, and all this has been confirmed to work as intended for now.
Mana Gems, Flame Caps, Health Stones cooldown linked has been changed. Mana Gems are now in their own category, while Health Stones and Flame Caps are in another. That means you can use Mana Gems at will and only have to decide between Health Stones and Flame Caps.
Improved Winter's Shadowscorch used to give +5% magical damage taken as the debuff, causing some theorycrafting havoc. As far as we know, this was a bug and has been fixed recently.
Replenishment nerfed by 1/5th, from 0.25% to 0.2% of your Maximum Mana per second. Tick and overwriting mechanics unchanged. Enduring Winter gets a 6s internal cooldown to reduce the mana losses from tick overwriting that we currently have, and that causes mages to spec 1/3 into it right now.
So, spec full 3/3 Enduring Winter when the patch rolls out if possible.
Spell Mana Cost was reduced all over the board.
Empowered Fire causes Ignite ticks to restore 2% of your Base Mana every tick. There was a bug that caused all DoT ticks to proc this, but that has been fixed.
Living Bomb can now be cast at several targets, at least for testing to see whether it works or is worth it. That's quite a lot for mult-mob fights.
The crits on DoT ticks will now also proc Hot Streak. This is a very significant buff, since you go from casting one crittable spell every 2.5s to casting one every 1.5s. This is particularly fun for multi-mob fights.
Empowered Frostbolt has the 2/4% crit changed to 0.1/0.2s cast time reduction. Good change, but not enough for PvE DPS viability yet.
Considered to be a good change for PvP, and 0.8s Frostbolts pre-haste seem like an interesting emergency snare.
Permafrost adds a 7/13/20% Mortal Strike effect to all your chill effects.
Professions got a lot of changes and tweaks to compete with epic gems. Jewelcrafting was reined in by making Dragon's Eyes coloured again instead of prismatic.
Tailoring is still on top, with JC/LW/Enc/BS/Alch pretty much tied for second tier (+/-1 differences). Engineering got a huge amount of tweaks making it even better than the listed tier two professions, but it uses a rather weak cloak enchant, which is why it falls below the second tier in conjunction with Tailoring. Burst and Speed Burst might make it competitive for the second slot however.
There is a "+10 to all stats" prismatic gem, which sadly is terrible for casters. Good for Physical DPS since they may gain decent DPS from Str/Agi/Int however.
Trinkets and Channeled AoE were announced to be fixed (like Dragon Soul finally proccing from Blizzard), but it doesn't seem to be actually fixed in-game.
Procs with Internal Cooldowns are said to trigger their internal cooldown when they are equipped.
That means if your raid pops Bloodlust/Heroism 15s into the fight, you might want to re-equip all your proc gear 30s before the fight. You however shouldn't do this if it means that you'll likely/statistically lose a proc at the end of the fght.
Fire - Frostfire - Frost - Arcane - the choice isn't really becoming better. Frost got some little buffs and is maybe halfway there to competitive for raids outside gimmick fights. T9 gear and set bonuses emphasise on crit, which makes Arcane a little worse with every new item due to crit scaling. It also boosts Frostfre to be competitive with Fire.
(That's all not set in stone yet, and different TC leads to different results. These general observations should be valid however.)
Amplify and Dampen Magic have been in discussion ever since the spells have existed. Of course, in a pure melee fight, you obviously cast Amplify Magic on your tanks. But it gets complicated once you have magic damage, on tanks or raidwide, combined with resistances. Quite often, tanks and probably other people will click off either buff with an "It gets me killed!"/"It gimps my healing!" explanation, even though clicking off one buff is equivalent to receiving the other buff. Well, in first order approximation, but you won't have to explain that to people who already know that.
So, here is a rough guideline to decide which buff is best to use.
* First, check if Amplify Magic actually increases the damage taken. In most of the recent fights from the last year, it doesn't acually increase most of the damage, so you can safely cast Amplify Magic.
* Amplify Magic is only a bad choice, if the targets takes damage very often (ticking auras perhaps), have a significant damage multilpier (Hydross) and magic restistances don't work or matter.
* Even damage spikes and potential one/two-shots are not necessarily bad, since Power Word: Shield and other shields/abilities/talents as well as damage reduction abilities make it very possible that the extra absorption scales better than the extra damage taken.
* So, there is no clear answer, but you very rarely go wrong with amplifying your tanks.
Set Bonus Values heavily depend on your gear level and raid buffs, but the following should be decent estimates to see whether it's worth upgrading sets or use offset items. A 1% damage boost is comparable to about 40 spell power if you want to do a quick calculation. If you want anything slightly more precise - use Rawr.
T9 Robes (Spirit/Hit) are the weakest part, Hood (Hit/Haste) and Leggings (Spirit/Crit) are alright, Shoulders and Gloves are good (Haste/Crit). 4T9 is extremely strong, comparable to the old 4T6.
Gemming strategies haven't changed much either. The 3% Crit Damage Metas are still 4-6 times as good as any other metas. Hats without sockets haven't appeared for a while, for that reason, they'd be auto-sharded.
Red Spellpower Gems are still the best gems overall, although Haste Gems get pretty close for Arcane in full T9.25.H.
If you need gems to cap your spell hit (you really shouldn't once you're decked in epic gear however), it is now better to use 2 Orange Gems instead of 1 Red and 1 Yellow Gem with epic gems, it was the other around with rare gems.
Glyphs for Raiding haven't changed either. Living Bomb > Molten Armour > Fireball/Frostfire Bolt for those specs, Arcane Blast > Molten Armour > Arcane Missiles ( >Arcane Power > Mana Gem > Arcane Barrage) for Arcane, and Frostbolt > Molten Armour >= Water Elemental for Frost. Water Elemental Glyph depends on fight length of course, e.g. it does nothing on 5-minute fights.
Enduring Winter (Non-issue in 3.2)
3/3 [Enduring Winter] is problematic for raid-wide replenishment. Your raid will lose about 30% Refreshment due to ticks resetting.
For example, if you cast a Frostbolt every 1.90 seconds, the Replenishment buff will reset every 1.90 seconds. And since Refreshment ticks 1 second after getting the buff, you only get mana back every 1.90 seconds.
In a raid environment, using 1/3 [Enduring Winter] is currently agreed upon as best choice for being Frost and offering Replenishment. You'll lose pet uptime, but that's generally better than wrecking your raid's mana.
Conqueror's Kirin Tor Hood Set Bonuses
2/5 T8 has a 25% proc rate and a 45s internal cooldown. A 3% DPS boost for most specs.
This is an outstanding set bonus, about a 3% increase for most specs. Get 2T8, regardless of what costs, ditch 4T7 without thinking twice. Also, it takes a lot to make you drop 2T8.
4/5 T8 has a 20% proc rate, has no cooldown and can chain proc. It's a 2% boost for Fire/Frostfire, 1% for Arcane, 0.2% for Frost.
If it procs, it simply makes you not lose the MBAM/HS/BF buff when casting AM/PY/FB, you don't get a new buff, it doesn't get renewed or reset. For one, that means you don't get a new MBAM/HS/BF proc message, so you need a new or updated alert mod. Also, chain procs don't change the buff timer. If you cast Pyroblast with 0.5s on your Hot Streak buff remaining and then get a 4T8 proc, it will be wasted because your buff runs out before you can recast Pyroblast due to GCD lock.
2/5 T7 is a 2% boost for Arcane, 1% for all other specs. 4/5 T7 is a 1% boost for all specs.
So, you should generally upgrade your gear, aiming for 4T8. For Arcane, there are cases where 2T7+2T8 beats 4T8 and other combinations, usually with T7 Cowl and Pants.
- Best DPS Glyph for Fire/Frostfire specs. Especially in 3.2.
It is affected by all damage and crit talents except the 6% crit of World in Flames. Burnout, CSD, 4T7 crit modifiers apply, but there is no mana cost/refund from Burnout/Master of Elements. Ignite is applied, causing more rolling and stuttering, but proper testing show no statistically significant gains or losses.
It interacts with Combustion, i.e. it increases but also consumes charges. Hence it makes the weak talent Combustion even worse since LB DoT crits are vastly smaller than FB/FFB crits.
Spark of Hope - 6th best trinket for Arcane, garbage for all other specs.
The 42 mana cost reduction is multiplied by talents and the Arcane Blast Debuff. So even while offering a very significant mana cost reduction especially when spamming Arcane Blast, it's only a mediocre DPS trinket since the mana-to-damage conversion in general is pretty bad.
Imp. Shadow Bolt always overwrites Imp. Scorch. You can't pre-stack Scorch when your Warlock dies or stops casting it.
The same happens with Imp. Scorch overwriting Winter's Chill.
Glyphs: Living Bomb > Molten > FB/FFB for FB/FFB. Molten vs. FB/FFB Glyph depends a lot on your Spirit. Scorch Glyph is usually worth using for 1 mage if you have no Shadowbolt Warlock.
ABlast, AMissiles and Molten are likely the choice for Arcane. Check Rawr to verify.
Run Speed Enchant
Formula: Enchant Boots - Tuskarr's Vitality beats the other enchants if you spend at least 4 seconds running per minute.
Actual quality depends of fight, gear, behaviour and much more, 4s/min is a generalised figure and threshold estimate.
Often, faster movement gives tactical and survival benefits that cannot be weighted against small DPS figures.
Glyph of Improved Scorch changed to 5 stacks per cast. If you're on Scorch Duty, accidentally dropping the debuff is not such a big thing any more since it doesn't result in any further necessary Scorch casts.
With the Warlock changes, you will rarely have a mage scorching any more.
Spirit is now a mediocre stat, up from useless. Molten Armour gives a 35% Spirit => Crit Rating conversion, 55% if Glyphed.
In general, Intellect is the better Mana Stat while Spirit is the better DPS Stat. It's about half as good as crit rating.
Exception is Arcane due to talents. For details, as always, use Rawr.
Pet Avoidance Water Elemental and Mirror Image pets got the 80% AoE damage reduction.
Ignite getting partial resists means a ~1.2% total DPS loss.
Mirror Image now causes a regular GCD. Still worth casting if they survive at least 15 seconds average, always worth it on the move of course, and when you need the threat reduction.
Tailoring is now the best profession. Lightweave Embroidery changed to 250 spell power for 15 second.
Illustration of the Dragon Soul
Blizzards does not stack it. Flamestrike causes exactly 1 stack upon cast, whether you anything or not.
All other AoE spells cause 1 stack on cast and 1 stack per target hit. One AE/Nova every 9 seconds keeps it stacked through phase changes of fights.
All nukes cause 1 stack on hit. DoT ticks do not cause any stacks.
Boss spell crit reduction for mages
Your crit chance versus bosses is reduced by X%. We're looking for that X.
It's something between 0% and 3% for mages. It's 2.1% for Death Knights, but proven to be less for mages.
Burnout now increases the crit modifier for all spells, but only fire spells incur a mana drain.
Spirit Regen was reduced by 40%. All "30% regen" got buffed to "50% regen" to compensate. That means "Mage Armour + Pyromaniac or Meditation = 100% spirit regen". You still cannot get above 100% regen.
The glyph now changes the frozen multiplier to 4 times the damage against targets above your level.
Read - "We found no other way to balance it without breaking PvP".
It's still not worth casting in PvE, not even with Ghost Charges.
Arcane Barrage scaling changed from 3/3.5 (86%) to 2.5/3.5 (71%).
changed to +3% damage, stacking 3 times.
changed to +25% spell crit bonus, works like 4T7/Burnout.
improved to +40%, stacking additively with Braid and 2T7.
Prensence of Mind and Arcane Power cooldowns shortened to 2 minutes, 1:24 with Arcane Flows.
Arcane Power lowered to 20% damage and mana cost increase.
Casting PoM locks out AP until PoM is consumed and for another 1.5s afterwards.
Casting AP locks out PoM for 10s. Having the AP locks out PoM while the you have the buff.
You cannot AP-PoM anything any more, even with glyphs, tricks and cheese.
changed to +200 Spell Power and +200 crit rating for 15s. Competitive now, but still a bit below Speed Potions in most cases.
now properly stacks with 2T7. The Mana Gain and the Spell Power buff both stack now.
is essentially a "Runic Mana + Speed Potion" now, making Alchemy a great choice for Arcane specs or when you're limited by Mana.
does not share the 45s CD with , but the buffs do not stack either.
and many other spell trinkets now also proc on DoT/HoT ticks, but not on Slowfall/Essence spam or other non-damage/non-healing spells any more.
Mirror Images now inherit 100% of your threat, but they won't pull aggro of something until they attack it.
Judgement of Wisdom proc rate is 50% again, giving 2% base mana per proc.
Pyromaniac provides 3% crit to fire spells only, not to all spells. The tooltip is misleading.
Many many trinkets and procs and are not triggered by Blizzard.
There are also reports of FoF not proccing with Imp. Blizzard, no Frostbite, cast on a target that cannot be slowed.
Odd reports about mage armour making DoTs tick twice as fast.
Molten Fury and Torment the Weak now properly stack.
The Arcane Blast Glyph stacks to +9% on 3 stacks.
Living Bomb procs Hot Streak if you have 2 crits in a row in your log. (Hit-Crit-Crit procs it, Crit-Hit-Crit does not.)
Imp. Blizzard can now proc FoF without having Frostbite. (BUG: Blizzard doesn't seem to proc FoF on non-snarable targets.)
BUG: FFB doubledips on the spell power from "Mind Mastery" (and Amplify/Dampen Magic).
Possibly on other items/buffs that provide "+offensive spell power".
Spirit mana regeneration is capped at 100%.
Pyromaniac, Meditation and Glyphed Mage Armour will not give you 170% regen, it will be capped at 100%.
Master of Elements returns a percentage of the base mana cost. It's a weak talent if you cast a lot of stacked Arcane Blasts since you pay many times the base mana cost and get only 30% of the base mana cost back.
Table of Content
* List of bugs and class issues
* DPS comparison for mages and other casters
* Profession comparison
* Description of new talents and abilities
* Lots of Links
* Scaling coefficients of abilities and pets
* Glyph options and choices
Bugs/Inconsistencies/Issues that affect gameplay decisions
Fire Power, Spell Impact and 4T6 are additive for Fireball.
Not sure whether/how Piercing Ice fits into that picture for Frostblt and Frostfire Bolt combinations.
Judgement of Wisdom
This ability has done a real rollercoaster ride on its proc chance, cooldown and mana returns.
It is currently at 50% proc, no cooldown, 2% base mana restored. The proc rate is disputed, possibly a PPM for spells even.
Whenever this ability changes in a patch, it will affect longvity and DPS of mage specs, favouring efficient specs when nerfed.
All potions have a 1 minute cooldown. When using a potion in combat, the cooldown timer will only start ticking down once you properly exit combat.
Invisibility and similar abilities cannot circumvent this in boss fights, the timer will start once the fight ends properly.
You can however use a Speed Potion the second before the pull to start the timer out of combat.
You can then use another Speed or Mana Potion a minute later in combat.
4T6 Set Bonus and others
The 4T6 set bonus, and also the 2T5 set bonus are worth roughly 150 spell power if all you did was casting the affected spells.
That means 2T5 is dead for good, and 4T6 with Sunwell pieces is still competitive into early Naxxramas for Frost and Fire specs.
The damage and mana cost modifier is a Magic Debuff. That means it cannot be clicked off, cannot be purged, but can be cleansed and will be spam cleansed by people who don't know about this beneficial debuff.
It is likely intended to be a Magic Buff.
Non-damage spells like Slow or Counterspell can also consume the crit buff.
The buff is also consumed at the beginning of Arcane Missile casts, but all 5 volley get the crit buff.
Its cast time has been reduced to 2 seconds for lower ranks. High ranks have not been changed and are still at 3 seconds.
The DoTs of different ranks of Flamestrike also stack. Staggering the 2 highest ranks is viable to maximise AoE DPS, usually followed by a Blizzard.
Is working and bugging as usual. You're most likely to lose damage from Fireball-Pyroblast crits.
Casting Scorch before your Pyroblast has the highest chance to gain damage from Ignite bugs, but it doesn't outweigh the damage loss from casting Scorch more often.
The new ranks of Molten Armour proc Ignite again, likely not intended.
Master of Elements
Arcane Missiles rank 11 and Blizzard rank 6 currently do not proc this talent. All other ranks seem to work fine.
The tooltip wording was changed badly in 3.0.8. It is still only 3% fire crit and 30% Regeneration.
The DoT portion doesn't get +10% damage from Firepower.
Also, the explosion after 12 seconds does not occur if the caster is unable to cast spells.
I.e. when stunned, silenced, dead, Ice Blocked, or when the target is beyond the 100 yard range.
It is uncertain if moving out of line of sight prevents the explosion.
This ability double-dips from Amplify and Dampen Magic. On targets with a talented +/- 360 spell power taken buff, it gains +/-720 spell power.
It also double-dips from the spell power from Mind Mastery. All other cases of double-dipping have been fixed.
Many trinkets ans spell cast proc effects are not triggered by Blizzard.
This includes Ashtongue Talisman, Sundial of the Exiled, Embrace of the Spider, Illustratin Dragon Soul and many other trinkets.
There are reports of Improved Blizzard without Frostbite not proccing Fingers of Frost on targets that cannot be slowed.
Fingers of Frost
Fingers of Frost and Frostbite will always proc simultaneously if specced for both. This is intentional by design.
The idea of the talent to make Frostbite useful in raids and some other situation where mobs/players do not stay frozen.
You can cast an instant spell right after your 2nd spell under FoF to get a 3rd spell with the FoF buff.
It is not known whether this is intended behaviour as shatter combo or not.
Molten Armour procs also consume a charge on Fingers of Frost.
Raid Buff Categories
144/260/10% spell power buff from Shaman, Warlock (10% of the Warlock's SP).
13% spell damage debuff from Death Knight, Druid, Warlock.
10% soon 5% spell crit debuff from Mage, Warlock.
5% spell haste buff from Shaman (Wrath of Air Totem).
5% spell crit buff from Druid, Shaman.
3% generic damage buff from Hunter, Paladin.
3% generic crit debuff from Paladin, Rogue, Shaman.
3% generic haste buff from Druid, Paladin.
Power Infusion does not stack with Arcane Power or Heroism, however Arcane Power and Heroism stack.
Arcane Power, Avenging Wrath and Tricks of the Trade do not stack with each other.
All other buff outside these catagories stack.
Mage and Caster DPS at Level 80
The latest Simcraft results can be found here SampleOutput - simulationcraft - Google Code
Specs with at least 18 points in Arcane assume Torment the Weak.
The top setups currently are Arcane (57/3/11) and Fire (20/51/0), depending on fight length, mechanics and the overall mana sitution.
Frostfire (0/53/18) is slightly behind Fire but vastly more mana efficient with better AoE and burst, Frost (18/0/53) is not competitive DPS.
Mage Gearing and Hit Cap at Level 80
Your first prority is getting spell damage. Your second second priority is also spell damage.
Even in crit heavy Fire and Frostfire specs, spell damage will be your best stat to stack via gems for a long while.
You also want to cap spell hit, but not at the cost of using inferior gear just because it has more hit.
When you get decked out in wisely chosen Naxxramas gear, you should easily reach the hit cap. Gem for it if you're close.
You need 17% spell hit t remove all misses. You can gain 1% from a Draenei in your group, 3% from a raid debuff, 0%-6% from talents.
The rest has to be obtained by gear, you need 26.232 hit rating for 1% spell hit at level 80.
That means if you have no spell buffs or talents, you need 446 hit rating for 17% spell hit chance.
Your Water Elemental and Mirror Image pets get the spell hit from your gear, but not from your talents.
Crit and Haste then are your secondary DPS stats. They are worse than spell power until you get around 4k spell power or more.
1 haste rating: Is worth about 0.7-0.8 spell power in full Naxxramas gear for most specs.
1 crit rating: Is worth 0.8 spell power for Frostfire, 0.7 for Fire, 0.5 for Frost, 0.4 for Arcane.
Intellect is on par with crit for Arcane and is has 1/3 of the strength of crit for the other specs. Spirit is mostly useless.
Mana is also very important, make sure you never run out of it.
If you use everything at your disposal and still run out of mana, check your spec and buffs.
If that still doesn't help then drop some haste, get some intellect, use Mage Armour. But don't stack spirit ever.
The percentage conversion for all ratings and stats at level 80 can be found in http://elitistjerks....ngs_level_80_a/
As for meta gems, the only acceptable choice is one of the +3% crit damage meta gems due to how it actually works.
It is worth about 150-200 DPS, which makes any headpieces without a meta socket a very bad choice.
Mage Profession gains
The whole list of Profession benefits can be found at http://elitistjerks....32-post854.html
It is possible that the options get upgraded
* Tailoring: +60 spell power equivalent. It's roughly +80 spell power and -23 haste, with stackability benefits.
* Jewelcrafting: +59 spell power and -24 stamina (or -16 spirit) with rare gems. +49 spell power and -30 stamina (or -20 spirit) when/if epic gems appear.
You can use Prismatic gems to unlock your meta gem requirement, allowing you to skip the two blue/purple coloured gems.
* Blacksmithing: +38 spell power with rare gems socketed, +46 spell power once/if epic gems get implemented.
* Epic gems are in the database, but with placeholder icons. They may or may not get implemented at all.
Jewelcrafting and Blacksmithing also have the advantage that you can chose which stat you want to improve by chosing gems.
If we ever reach the point where gemming hit, crit or haste beats spell power, we can switch to these gems.
* Alchemy: +37 spell power, and +70 mp5 in a 5 minute fight with a Crazy Alchemy Potion that gives an additional Potion of Speed buff reliably
* Inscription: +37 spell power, +43 spell when you're not Exalted with Sons of Hodir yet.
* Enchanting: +38 spell power, Leatherworking: +37 spell power.
* Engineering: +21 spell power equivalent from gloves, a bit more with stacking. Has a lot of extra situational gadget benefits.
* Herbalism, Mining, Skinning are currently not competitive options for Mage DPS.
WotLK Mage Mechanics Changes
This post first covers general changes in spellcasting mechanics.
It will then explain ambiguous talents and changes in mechanics of existing spells.
I am not going to mention every talent that has been changed, because nearly everything has changed.
35 talents are unchanged - actually some of those have been moved around a bit - while 51 talents are new or have been changed.
Raid Synergies and Changes - Patch 3.0.2 - On Debuffs, Buffs, and Raid Stacking
Raid buffs and debuff have been unified and categorised into non-stacking types.
This list is an augmented list of an official post on what stacks and what not.
Rawr - http://elitistjerks....leased_10_26_a/
Probably the best tool out there for fine-tuning mage gear, stats and decisions.
It's strongest point is that it uses a solver that takes mana into account to maximise your performance.
This includes partial use of mana dumps (Living Bomb, Arcane Blast) and the choice of using or skipping Mage Armour, Evocation, Mana Gems, Mana Potions for better DPS choices.
It does require some proper setup. And if it tells you to spam intellect gems, you likely lack buffs or set the fight length too long.
Theory Craft-o-Matic - Theory Craft-o-Matic
Lhivera's popular tool to quickly find gear weighing stats. It's great for quick checks.
It does show your mana consumption, but it has no way of knowing how much mana you have available.
Vontre's Magegraf - Vontre's Magegraf
A mage/warlock casting simulator updated for the current level 80 talents and abilities.
Simulationcraft - http://elitistjerks....el_development/
A simulator that simulates a whole raid. Has the great advantage of being able to compare across classes.
Also shows mana gains and expenditure from different sources, and allows interaction of talents like Focus Magic.
Mage Level 80 Stats and Base Damage - http://elitistjerks....01-post398.html
This post and the following list base stats and base damage for level 80 mage spells.
Mana Cost as percentage of base mana - http://elitistjerks....65-post793.html
Any level 80 mage has 3268 Base Mana, mana cost is given as percentage and absolute.
Mana regeneration from Spirit and outside sources - http://elitistjerks....5-post1268.html
Lists pure regeneration to estimate sustainability of specs, does not include Base Mana Pool and Evocation.
Level 80 Statistics
A level 80 undead mage has the following statistics:
35 Strength, 41 Agility, 60 Stamina, 179 Intellect, 179 Spirit
7883 HP, 5673 Mana, 1.98% spell crit
This means the Base Mana of any level 80 mage regardless of race is 3268, Base Health is 7463.
Base Health of any pet including Water Elemental pets has been significantly boosted.
With 737 stamina and 703 intellect, a mage has 14653 HP / 13533 Mana while his pet has 9218 HP / 3948 Mana.
The water elemental scales with 30% of its master's Stamina and Intellect, 35% of it's master's Armour and 33% of its master's Spell Damage.
It gains slightly less than 7.5 HP per Stamina and 5.0 Mana per Intellect.
Waterbolt costs 163 Mana, deals 601-673 base damage, Freeze costs 817 Mana.
Raid Buff Normalisation
Many raid buffs and debuff have been changed and share categories in which they don't stack.
For example rogues, paladins and shaman can all provide a 3% crit debuff on mobs, only one of those is needed however.
For mages, that means that Improved Scorch, Winter's Chill and Improved Shadowbolt are in the same category, and no other debuff is in it.
That means the 5% crit debuff of these abilities doesn't stack, and every raid should have 1 mage or warlock who is specced for one of them.
Breaking Frost Nova
Frost Nova, Frostbite, Entangling Roots, Fear and other effects that had a chance on breaking on damage now break after a certain amount of health lost during the effect.
The amount of damage depends on the target's health pool. The amount of damage is different in PvP and PvE.
It might also be different for elite mobs, since it could make effects hardly ever break on them.
Currently, this cap seems to be 40% of the mob's health for all of the mentioned effects.
Effect/Issue: This gives Frost Mages a spell damage threshold when fighting mobs of a narrow level range.
Below that threshold, Frostbolt crits will never break Frost Nova/Frostbite, so you can shatter 3 spells on them (2 Frostbolts and 1 Ice Lance).
If you get above the threshold, you'll sometimes/often/always break Frost Nova/Frostbite after one crit.
This of course depends on your level, your spell rank and the mob levels (for the mob's health).
More info on http://elitistjerks....17-post196.html and http://elitistjerks....08-post200.html.
Area of Effect Damage Caps
The Area of Effect Damage Caps have been loosened.
All of them are now capped at 25.000 damage for every second base cast time at level 80, instants count as 1.5s as always.
That means instant spells are capped at 37.500 damage, Blizzard is capped at 25.000 damage per wave.
The base mechanics are still the same however.
Crits and damage debuffs allow you to exceed the cap, more spell power of self-buffs do not.
Any spell you cast can get pushed back only twice now.
The first two hits cause 0.5s pushback, further hits cause no effect. Channeled spells lose 25% channeling time per pushback.
Pushback resistance talents and abilities now reduce the pushback time instead of chance.
So, with Burning Soul, you lose 0.15s casting time for the first two hits, for a total 0.3s instead of 1.0s.
Concentration Aura and similar talents work the same way and stack up to 100%.
With channeled spells, remember that even with 95% pushback reduction, you will still always lose one wave.
Mana Reduction Talents
All talents and effects that reduce mana costs are multiplicative unless listed as special case.
The only exception is Arcane Blast, which has the Arcane Power +30% cost, the Tirisfal Regalia +5% cost and the Arcane Blast debuff +200% cost (up to 3 times) are added together to form one multiplier which is then multiplied with the remaining talent multipliers.
So, everything behaves like on live.
All spell mana costs are being changed to a percentage of base mana.
Downranking now costs the same mana for the last three rank and even more for any rank before that.
Around 5-7 levels after learning a spell, it will start taking a 5% penalty from your spell power for every level after that certain level. After 20 more levels, it only gets its base damage.
This is mostly irrelevant since downranking doesn't reduce a spell's mana cost any more.
It is now possible to fully cap spell hit. The 99% hit cap has been removed.
Full resists appear as misses in the combat log.
The miss rates for spells have not been changed, this has been verified with several thousand casts.
They are still 4%/5%/6%/17% for mobs 0/1/2/3 levels above you.
Every spell with a damage component can now be partially resisted.
Level-based partial resists are still in the game, but do not follow the strict 25%/50%/75% pattern any more.
It seems to be 10%/20%/30% for mobs slightly above you, and scales up to 60%/70%/75% for mobs far above you.
Spell penetration was tested to still have no impact, it is still completely useless except for one or two fights.
The healing part is now considered direct spell power and has been reduced since the spell power scaling of heals has increased with the removal of +healing.
The overall effect is like before now.
Shields and Wards
Fire Ward, Frost Ward, Mana Shield and Ice Barrier now scale with 80.7% of your spell power.
That's 1.5/3.5 for being an instant multiplied with 0.855/0.455 for being a healing effect.
None of these shield seem to be affected by Amplify/Dampen Magic.
Wanding now causes only 1 global cooldown when you start wanding. The GCD is a 1.5s physical GCD which is not affected by haste/heroism/etc.
After that, you continue wanding but you are not put on another GCD.
So, while wanding, you can cast a new spell at any time now and react immediately.
4/5 Frostfire Garb Set Bonus
This set bonus works like a 5% version of Spell Power/Burnout/Ice Shards and works additive with it.
That means it's roughly 2.5% increase of the absolute crit modifier, 3.5% with Ignite.
For all practical purposes at around 50% crit rate, it's a 0.9%-1.1% DPS increase and not worth giving up good upgrades for.
This is the new level 80 Mage Spell. It summons 3 mirror images of the mage who cast Frostbolts and Fire Blasts at hostile targets for 30 seconds.
They may also polymorph a secondary target, this Polymoph has a a range of 8 yards and no Dimnishing Returns.
The Mirror Images inherit the mage's threat lists. The mage also gains a 400k temporary threat reduction buff like fade.
The images deal about 15.000 damage over 30 seconds and do scale with gear.
The exact scaling is listed on the bottom of the post.
Mirror Images are not on the global cooldown, but the do trigger a 1.5s GCD on all other abilities that are not on the GCD.
It can be circumvented by macroing Icy Veins/Arcane Power/etc., Trinket, DPS consumable, Mirror Image and Fireball/Frostbolt/Whatever in that order. This macro cannot be spammed, if Mirror Image is on cooldown it will block out your nuke spells.
It's not clear whether that is a bug or intended.
The mage and their images do not swap position upon casting Mirror Image any more.
Newly cast spells will not be aimed at you if cast after the Mirror Images appear.
Bug/Issues: Copies may currently break crowd control effects, or polymorph and heal a primary target.
The Arcane Blast debuff was changed to +200% mana cost to Arcane Blast and +15% damage to Arcane spells, stacking additively 3 times.
It fades when any Arcane spell other than Arcane Blast is cast. When casting Arcane Missiles are cast, the debuff fades when the last Missile is cast.
The debuff duration was changed to 10 seconds, but it is now a cleansable Magic debuff.
That means it will be cleansed by Decursive happy priests and paladins and cannot be purged.
(It was most likely intended to be a purgable Magic buff, not Debuff. Most likely a bug.)
The Mana Cost increases from the Arcane Blast debuff, Arcane Power and 2/5 Tirisfal Regalia are additive, not multiplicative.
They form a single coefficient for the spell's mana cost which is then multiplied with all other mana cost talents.
2/5 Tirisfal regalia has been changed to a 5% damage and mana cost increase and while still being a valuable set bonus, it is no longer manadatory to maximise DPS and outdated in level 80 gear.
Bug/Creative Mechanics - Arcane Shatter
The commonly accepted best Arcane cast sequence is AB-AB-AB-AM-ABar, regardless whether MBAM procced or not.
It requires you to cast ABar just when the last Missile of AM is launched, even clipping and losing the 5th Missile if necessary.
This causes the Arcane Barrage spell to be cast with the 45% (60% Glyhped) damage buff.
It is not known whether this is intented and whether it can be fixed at all.
The Damage-Mana ratio has been reduced to 1:1.5 and can be reduced to 1:1 with talents now.
Mage Armour only reduces the duration of magic-type dispellable debuffs.
If a magic DoT ticks 5 times over 15 seconds, it will now tick 2 times over 7.5 seconds. The fractional tick is lost.
Channeled DoTs like Mind Flay or Drain Life are unaffected.
Torment the Weak
On snarable targets, every snare or attack speed slow triggers Torment on that mob. Hamstring, Frostbolt, everything.
On unsnarable targets like raid bosses, only the attack speed slows Earth Shock, Frost Fever, Thunder Clap, Judgements of the Just, Infected Wounds and the mage ability Slow triggers it.
In raids, Torment should be triggered by default unless you face immunities, untanked mobs or an extremely unusual and disadvantageous raid composition.
Taking all three points of this talent makes Invisibility instant. It works properly now.
The buff memorises its absorption timers.
If you absorb two hits for 1k each at 0s and at 5s, you will get +150 damage from 0-5s, 10s-15s and +300 dmg from 5s-10s.
There doesn't seem to be a way to make it a rolling effect like the old Ignite or prolong the effects in any other way.
[Edit]: It was changed recently, to stretch the remaining spell power instead of staggering it.
In the above example, you'd have +150 dmg from 0-5s, as expected. At 5 seconds, it recalculates and you get +150 dmg from the recent absorb and +150 dmg * 5s (remaining) / 10s (new remaining time) = +150 dmg +75 dmg = +225 dmg from 5-15s.
The 2.5s channeling time is then affected normally by all other haste effects.
The buff procs on spell cast, not spell hit, and can be reacted on when proccing off Arcane Barrage.
This haste effect is multiplicative with all other haste effects.
It is an instant spell that scales like a 2.5s cast time spell, it gains 71.4% scaling with your spell power.
It had 3/4 of a 3s spell which is 64.3% during one push in beta, the full 3s spell value on release and is now down to scale like a 2.5s cast time spell.
Ignite ticks can still get lost when landing simultaneous critical strikes.
This problem is mainly during Hot Streak, if an instant Pyroblast crit follows a Fireball crit.
Its cast time has been reduced to 2 seconds for lower ranks. High ranks have not been changed yet, so we don't know if the scaling will be changed or not.
The scaling of the DoT has been changed to 12.2% of your spell power per tick and is very powerful.
The DoTs of different ranks of Flamestrike stack, it is not known whether this is intended.
A rotation of the two highest ranks of Flamestrike and Blizzard to fill the time produces very high DPS if you can hit all targets due to the stacked DoTs. That's also the highest amount of AoE DPS a mage can achieve.
Even though the cast time has been reduced to 5 second, the coefficients are unchanged.
It's is still 115% on the direct hit and 5% on each of the 4 DoT ticks.
The spell is only worth casting when made instant.
Master of Elements
Arcane Missiles and Blizzard now proc Master of Elements properly.
If one volley crits, you get refunded 30% of 1/5 of the mana cost for Arcane Missiles, or of 1/8th of the mana cost of Blizzard.
Living Bomb also refunds mana if the final detonation crits. And costs mana if specced for Burnout.
Does not share a cooldown with Cone of Cold any more.
This talent works like a counter that counts how many critical strikes with the listed spells you have just had in a row.
When it reaches 2, the counter resets and you gain the Hot Streak buff for one instant Pyroblast.
With Living Bomb, it triggers if you have two criticals in a row in the order of your combat log.
The counter continues to count anew even if you haven't cast your Pyroblast yet.
You're not going to lose charges to double crits just because you cannot react on your most recent spell.
The DoT ticks every 3 seconds, 4 times total, and gains 20% of your spell power on each tick. The final explosion gains 40% of your spell power.
The DoT only ticks on the single target, while the final explosion is an AoE effect.
It procs Hot Streak if you get two crits in a row in the order of your combat log including your previous cast.
This spell is very valuable for single target DPS in its current state.
It is affected by almost every ability that affects fire spells or frost spells.
The only exceptions are range talents which do not apply. Its range is fixed at 40 yards.
The Fireball/Frostbolt cast time talents do not affect it either, which is expected.
The direct damage part scales as expected with 85.7%. The DoT ticks 3 times every 3s for 9s total.
Permafrost affects the length of the Frostfire Bolt debuff. If you spec at least 2/3 Permafrost, you will get a 4th tick of the DoT.
The DoT does not scale with spell power any more and is pretty useless, it used to scale for some time during beta.
The whole spell always deals Frostfire damage all the time.
If Frostfire Bolt gets counterspelled, it locks out both, Fire and Frost spells.
Also, locking out either school will also lock out Frostfire Bolt.
When dealing with mobs that are resistant/vulnerable/immune to either Frost of Fire, damage calculation is based on the weakest type to inflict the highest damage.
Note that Ignite itself still does only Fire damage, so Fire immune mobs won't take any Ignite damage.
Frostfire Bolt threat is affected by Burning Soul and Frost Channeling, but they don't stack.
So you get 10% threat reduction if you have one of them or both. DoT and direct damage threat is affected.
Ignite threat however is only affected by Burning Soul.
Note that threat over time is mostly irrelevant in most raids right now. Burst threat on the pull can be dealt with by using Mirror Image.
This spell does not have very strong basic scaling, but it can compensate through its extremely powerful scaling by combining critical strike damage talents and Ignite.
It used to benefit twice from many talents because it dealt frost and fire damage. Most of the issues have been fixed though.
Bug: It benefits twice from the spell power from Mind Mastery, and twice from Amplify/Dampen Magic on the target.
The individual hits in the individual waves are now capable of critical strikes.
Blizzard triggers Winter's Chill on every wave. It also triggers Fingers of Frost if Frostbite is specced for Imprved Blizzard to get a slow effect.
Fingers of Frost and Frostbite only proc simultaneously, but they provide a large amount of Shatter uptime for AoE spells.
Bug: The majority of trinkets and procs based on spells are not triggered by Blizzard.
There are also reports of FoF not proccing with Imp. Blizzard, no Frostbite, cast on a target that cannot be slowed.
The Freeze effect does not cause damage or break crowd control.
It counts as proper freeze effect for Ice Lance and Shatter.
Fingers of Frost
Fingers of Frost procs will always conincide with Frostbite procs. This intentional by design.
It allows your spells cast to be affected by Shatter, causes your Ice Lances to do triple damage and allows you to lauch Deep Freeze stun at targets that are not frozen.
You can currently cast 3 spells under 1 proc of Fingers of Frost, if the 3rd spell is an instant spell that is cast right after the 2nd spell.
It might require some practise and may or may not be intended.
The spell requires your target to be frozen at the beginning and the end of Deep Freeze's cast time.
Deep Freeze scales like a 1.5s cast time spell with 42.9% of your spell power.
The first point is moot now as it's instant, the second is now moot since it does no damage any more.
For the 5 second duration of the Deep Freeze debuff debuff, your target is considered frozen and stunned.
It shares Diminishing returns with all other controlled stuns, except Kidney Shot which is in its own separate category.
Bug: Impact stuns currently overwrite and remove Deep Freeze, even if Impact procs from the same cast.
Mana Shield, Fire/Frost Ward, Ice Barrier: 80.53% (1.5/2.5 as instant * 0.855/0.455 healing conversion); unaffected by Amplify/Dampen Magic
Pyroblast: 115% direct damage, 5% per DoT tick
Frostbolt: 85.71% direct damage, with and without Glyph
Frostfire Bolt: 85.71% direct damage, the DoT does not scale at all
Flamestrike: 23.57% direct damage; 12.2% per DoT tick
Frost Nova: (19.3% I think, 1.5/3.5 instant * 0.5 AoE * 0.9 freeze penalty)
Arcane Barrage: 71.14% direct damage (like a 2.5s cast time spell)
The Water Elemental gains all raid buffs like auras, totems and procs.
It gains 1/3 (33.33%) of its master's spell power, and all their spell hit from gear.
That means double-dipping from the spell power buffs like Totem of Wrath for example.
Waterbolt then scales with 5/6 (83.33%) of the pet's spell power.
Waterbolt base damage is 256-328 + 11.5*(level-50).
Its Stamina is 118 + 30% master's stamina, Intellect is 369 + 30% master's intellect, Armour is 7822 + 35% master's armour.
Its Health then is 6676 + 7.5 * Stamina and Mana is 1082 + 4.95 * Intellect.
Casting Mirror Images is not on the GCD. Casting it however invokes a GCD on all abilities that are not on the GCD.
In particular Arcane Power, Icy Veins, Counterspell and all activated Trinkets.
It is unknown whether this is intended or not, or what the purpose is.
This can be circumvented by macroing Icy Veins/Arcane Power/etc., Trinket, DPS consumable, Mirror Image and Fireball/Frostbolt/NukeOfChoice in that order.
You cannot spam this macro however, since your Nuke spell will not be cast if Mirror Image is on it's cooldown.
They do not get raid buffs themselves unlike the Water Elemental. So, they only scale indirectly with buffs on the player.
They last 30s when cast and can usually get 12 Fire Blasts and 24 Frostbolts off in total, in a 1:2 rotation.
They have a cast delay like all other pets, but their Fire Blast has no GCD.
They can also cast a Polymorph with a 8 yard range which does not have or share Diminishing Returns.
They inherit 1/3 (33.33%) of their master's spell power each.
Their Frostbolts do 163-169 + 30% of their spell power as frost damage. They crit for 150%.
They also slow their target by 40% for 4 seconds.
Their Fire Blasts do 88-98 + 15% of their spell power as fire damage. They crit for 150%.
Latest tests: http://elitistjerks....9-post3973.html
- The 3% damage stacks, making the Arcane Blast buff 18% per stack.
- Is affected by Combustion and all damage and crit talents except World in Flames and Hot Streak.
- The glyph is a flat 5% multiplier on top of everything. The coefficient does not change. Frostbolt continues to proc Frostbite and Fingers of Frost.
- The Glyph stacks with Serpent-Coil Braid and with 2/5 T7.
- This Glyph makes Priests unable to break their own Polymorph with Shadow Word: Death.
- The -30 seconds are applied before talents. The cooldown is 2:00 when glyphed and talented.
Evocation and Frost Nova are nice Glyphs for leveling. At least I prefer an emergency heal and less freeze breaking over some straight damage modifiers
Deep Frost builds are the best leveling specs for that matter. You don't get your 3rd Major Glyph Slot until level 80.
Arcane should glyph Arcane Blast, Arcane Missiles and Molten Armour or Arcane Power.
Fire/Frostfire should glyph Living Bomb, Molten Armour and then Fireball/Frostfire Bolt or Improved Scorch.
Frost should glyph Frostbolt, Water Elemental and Molten Armour.
I'd like to thank all the people that made this post and its following discussion possible.
Special thanks go to Astrylian, Dedmonwakeen, Kavan, Lhivera, Manly, Vontre, Zaldinar for extensive theorycrafting, simulations and being vocal about issues and problems. My thanks however go also to the countless players who smacked Dummies and Dr. Boom for large amounts of data, contributed with new ideas, added new comments and brought up all the little things without which contributed to to this inspiring community.