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Cataclysm Arcane Mage Compendium


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#1 Seonid

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Posted 03 October 2008 - 07:47 AM

=Introduction=
This thread will be a consolidated resource for Cataclysm Arcane Mages. The current comparative thread is not being actively maintained and as such, will not be updated with the changes that are coming to the Arcane tree. It should be noted that the details in this post will be expanded in time as more details of the upcoming Arcane changes are known, which means some sections may appear sparse at this time.

This compilation is the combined work of the EJ Mage community, I am simply collating and updating the information as necessary.

=Abbreviations=
[TABLE]Abbreviation | Definition
AB | Arcane Blast
ABar | Arcane Barrage
AM | Arcane Missiles
NP | Netherwind Presence
TtW | Torment the Weak
CS | Counterspell
PoM | Presence of Mind
MI | Mirror Image
[/TABLE]

=Nomenclature=
Arcane has evolved a particular nomenclature over time to better describe spell rotations and sequences. They are typically in the form AB[x]ABar[a][c]AM and can be explained as follows. The basic premise is derived from that you will always cast AB to a certain stack level and clear that stack either by using ABar or AM. The actual stack level itself can vary although it is often stacked to a specific value and then cleared, or AB is cast until an AM proc occurs. Take the following cycle as an example:

AB4ABar234AM : Cast AB to a maximum of a 4 stack, use ABar to clear the stack and restart if no AM proc occurred. If during the AB stacking you gain an AM proc, clear the AB stack with AM on either 2,3 or 4 stacks dependant on when it occurs and your current AB cast has completed.

There are a large number of potential cycles although in practice you will not use so many, but there is still a reactive element as you may need to adjust your cycles to compensate for the RNG of AM procs as well as raid or item effects.

=Resources=

[table=head]Resource|Link
Talent Calculator|Cataclysm Talent Calculator: Mage
chardev Character planner|chardev 8 - Cataclysm Beta
EJ Mage Resources|http://elitistjerks....mage_resources/
Former Arcane Thread|http://elitistjerks....updated_4_01_a/
Mage Simulators and Formulators|http://elitistjerks....rs_formulators/

=Rawr and SimulationCraft: Where to Start=

Rawr and SimulationCraft (SimC) are very popular tools used by many players to help get the best performance out of their characters. Learning how to use them is easy, quick, rewarding - and is therefore an excellent investment of your time. Here are the basics to get these tools up and running to look at Relative Stat Values for your character. Don't be afraid to play around with these tools to discover more of the information they are capable of providing. There is a vast wealth of further information on their respective websites and/or the Links provided below, this is just a very brief guide to start people off on the right track.

[table=head]Tool|Website|Download Instructions|Quick Notes|For More Information
Rawr| Rawr |Rawr can be run online via this location: http://elitistjerks.com/rawr.php . You may be prompted to install appropriate software first. Alternatively, you can download Rawr for offline use via Rawr|To import your character: Click "File" then "Load from Battle.net" and fill in your Character Server/Realm/Name particularsTo see the "Relative Stat Values" for your character, Click on "Gear -> Slot" then "Stat Values" then "Relative Stat Values".Rawr has an impressive amount of incredibly useful features, too many to even list here, useful for beginners and advanced users alike. It's a good idea to simply spend time playing around with Rawr, experimenting with the available features.|http://elitistjerks....7825-rawr_mage/
|
SimulationCraft|Welcome to SimulationCraft|Via the SimulationCraft website, follow the central link and navigate to "Downloads" (Which will take you here: Downloads - simulationcraft - Project Hosting on Google Code). Download/extract the appropriate .zip file to your computer and simply run it afterwards.|To Import your Character into SimulationCraft and find out Relative Stat Values:1: Via the "Import" tab, navigate to your character on the armoury and click Import.2: Go to 'Options' then 'Scaling' and check all 6 stats relevant to Mages (Int, Spell Power, Haste, Crit, Hit, Mastery).3: Click "Simulate". Results will be populated and appear in the Results section. Your Relative Stat values (ie "Scale Factors") will be viewable here.Another example: Let's say you're currently a ~359 Fire Mage, but want to see what the Relative Stat Values are for a ~372 geared mage in BIS gear. Doing this will let you compare results - and see how values change depending on current levels of gear. Click "Import" - but instead of using your character on the armory - choose "BIS" then navigate to Mage Tier 11 and choose the Fire 372 Profile. Click simulate to populate results using this profile. In the "Results" section, the "Origin" link provided will show you the actual gear used for the BIS profile you just simulated. Information regarding which Glyphs and Talents were used is displayed as well.|http://elitistjerks....el_development/

=Arcane Talents=

[table=head]Tier|Talent|Notes
1|Arcane Concentration|Mandatory.
1|Improved Counterspell|Skip, PvP talent.
1|Netherwind Presence|Mandatory.
2|Torment the Weak|Mandatory.
2|Invocation|Optional. Even though a ranged interrupt, CS still has a 24 second CD.
2|Improved Arcane Missiles|Mandatory and a prerequisite.
2|Improved Blink|Optional, can assist in high mobility encounters.
3|Arcane Flows|Mandatory.
3|Presence of Mind|Mandatory and a prerequisite.
3|Missile Barrage|Mandatory.
3|Prismatic Cloak|Optional, reduced raid damage can help in progression encounters.
4|Improved Polymorph|Optional, can help if CC is typically chaotic.
4|Arcane Tactics|Optional, the 3% damage buff is only also brought by Retribution Paladins and BM Hunters, which may be a factor dependant on your raid size or composition.
4|Incanter's Absorption|Optional, dependant on repeated raid damage of the appropriate magic type.
4|Improved Arcane Explosion|Optional, can be dangerous to be in melee range.
5|Arcane Potency|Mandatory.
5|Slow|Mandatory and a prerequisite.
5|Nether Vortex|Optional, useful for untanked targets. Now correctly applies the Slow effect even if the target is beyond unglyphed Slow range.
6|Focus Magic|Mandatory.
6|Improved Mana Gem|Mandatory.
7|Arcane Power|Mandatory.

=Fire and Frost Subspec Talents=

Not much in the way of choice here currently with the points available and their Arcane synergies.

[table=head]Tier|Talent|Notes
1|Piercing Ice|Recommended.
||
1|Master of Elements|Recommended, though mana returns from this are derived from base mana which does not benefit AB by a significant amount.
1|Burning Soul|Recommended, a lot of pushback mechanics exist in raids.

=Talent Specs=

An example talent spec is here (33/5/3) which focuses on mobility and reduced raid damage. There are a number of optional talents dependant on your specific raid or role requirements and these are covered in the table above.

=Glyphs=

Prime Glyphs


Mage Armour
Arcane Blast
Arcane Missiles

The Arcane Barrage glyph may become viable, dependant on further mana changes and analysis.

Major and Minor glyphs are typically driven by raid requirements and personal choice, though some potentially suitable ones are detailed below.

Major Glyphs


Arcane Power - Useful when combined in a macro with MI.
Evocation - Situationally useful, particularly as it is used every CD.

Minor Glyphs


Mirror Image - Increased damage for the burn phase.
Conjuring - Reduces the mana cost of creating a new Mana Gem if needed.


=Arcane Cycles=

The basic premise behind Arcane DPS is divided into two main phases, the Burn Phase and the Conservation Phase.

Burn Phase


As the name suggests, this is the primary DPS phase of the Arcane spec and is initiated when Evocation will be off CD when the burn phase is completed and ideally, when at full mana with a 4 stack AB present. A typical scenario would be to AB spam until your mana level is such that a Mana Gem will take you to 100% mana, then pop all CDs and continue to spam AB until you reach 35% mana. This phase ends with an Evocation.
Dependant on encounter mechanics, the burn phase need not necessarily be initiated at the start of the encounter as was somewhat traditional with Arcane. If periods exist were a specific high RDPS is needed, or the boss enters a phase were they take vastly increased damage, then the burn phase can be aligned to that. Flame Orb can also be used to regenerate mana as in some cases it can initiate a high number of AM procs. This could allow for a secondary limited burn phase after Evocation using every available AM proc to regenerate mana. PoM can also be introduced into the burn phase once AP fades as with the Arcane Potency proc being active, a 4 stack AB is preferable. PoM can also be used at a suitable point prior to the pull, such as conjuring a mana gem and the two Arcane Potency buff charges will be present for the pull itself.

Conservation Phase


This is a mana-neutral rotation designed to keep your mana near 100% until such time as Evocation will soon be off CD. The exact rotation is heavily dependant on gear and raid buffs and is probably the phase affected the most by the coming Arcane changes. The primary focus of this phase is maintaining as close to 100% mana as possible whilst ensuring that no mana is wasted. There will be some variation in your chosen mana neutral cycle as you take advantage of procs such as Clearcasting and Arcane Potency.

Optimal Cycles


The current optimal cycles can be found here with an explanation of the cycle palette here.

=Enchants and Item Enhancements=

To view the full list of available Enchants, including Profession Specific enchants, visit Cataclysm Mage Resources

[table="head"]Slot | Enhancement | Notes
Source: Cataclysm Mage Resources||
Head | | Guardians of Hyjal: Revered
Neck | |
Shoulders | | Therazane: Exalted
Back | 50 Int|
Chest | 20 All Stats|
Wrists | 50 Int|
Hands | 50 Haste OR 65 Mastery |
Waist | 1 Socket | Made by Blacksmithing
Legs | 95 Int & 80 Stamina | Made by Tailoring
Feet | Runspeed & 35 Mastery| Non-Runspeed options are: 50 Mastery OR 50 Haste OR 50 Hit
Rings | |
Trinkets |
Mainhand Weapon | Power Torrent|
Offhand Weapon | 40 Int|
Wand |

=Gemming=

Intellect is by far the strongest stat and you should prioritise gemming for Intellect on gear. As Intellect is a primary stat and not available for reforging, as a general rule you will gem for Int and reforge as necessary for your secondary stat requirements such as hit.


The following gems are at our disposal:

[table=head]Stats|Name
40 Intellect|
20 Intellect + 20 Haste|
20 Intellect + 20 Mastery|
20 Intellect + 20 Hit|

For your Metagem use a Burning Shadowspirit Diamond newly introduced in Patch 4.06. The activation requirement is simply to have a minimum of 3 Red gems in gear. In the meantime, you can temporarily use the Ember Shadowspirit Diamond Metagem instead. If that is too rare/expensive currently on your server, the WOTLK version may suffice: Ember Skyflare Diamond

=Relative Stat Values=

Intellect is by far the strongest stat, followed by hit although you still have to be mindful of the hit cap. The relative values of Crit, Haste and Mastery can vary a great deal, dependant on gear and raid buffs. The problem with a table of relative stat values is they are typically treated as a mantra set in stone rather than a guide. Tools such as Rawr and SimC are ideal for determining your relative stat values better than any static table.

Haste Cap


With the Patch 4.1 reduction in the AB cast time and given the levels of Haste present on current raid gear, it is now once again feasible to encounter the game mechanic of the Haste Cap; where under stacked spell haste conditions (such as Heroism/Bloodlust/Berserking) your AB cast time hits the 1 second GCD hard limit. Current analysis indicates that excess Haste be reforged to Hit or Mastery as required. Tools such as Rawr can calculate this for you if your appropriate raid buffs and spell haste effects are set correctly.

=BiS Lists=

These will not be included within this compendium as the http://elitistjerks....rs_formulators/ thread already covers this, since all the simulations are run with specific gear sets.

=Addons=

The following addons may be of use to Arcane Mages, though this is by no means an exhaustive list.

Mage Mana Bar - Addons - Curse : Has multiple features to help optimise the play of an Arcane Mage.
TellMeWhen - Addons - Curse : This can be useful for tracking AB stacks as well as Arcane Potency, Clearcasting and other procs.
Mage Nuggets - Addons - Curse : A useful addon incorporating a wide variety of Mage functionality and proc tracking.

=General Notes=

This section is for general notes and observations that do not cleanly fit within the above sections.

Mana Tide affects Spirit and as only Healing specs can access the necessary talents to convert Spirit into in-combat mana regeneration, it's of no real use to DPS casters.Regarding Focus Magic priority targets, Silverwind did some SimCraft runs that can be seen here.

=Addendum=

[b]If you have any requests, corrections or updates then please PM them to me directly, to help keep the thread clear for discussion and analysis.


My thanks to Logix, Tyrian and Kavan.

=Patch 4.1 Notes=

  • Arcane Blast cast time has been reduced to 2.0 seconds, down from 2.35 seconds. In addition, the stacking effect of Arcane Blast now increases the damage done by Arcane Explosion, and Arcane Explosion does not consume that effect.
  • Arcane Explosion damage has been increased by 30%.
  • Improved Arcane Explosion now also reduces the mana cost of Arcane Explosion by 25/50%.
  • Arcane Missiles damage has been increased by 13%.
  • Arcane Barrage damage has been increased by 13%.

=Patch 4.2 Note=

  • Arcane Blast damage done has been reduced by 5%.

=Updates=

Spoiler


#2 Kavan

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 02:43 AM

I haven't posted any updates on optimal arcane cycles in some time, so this hotfix is a good opportunity to do so. This is with roughly 359 gear with 4T11, 25 man raid buffs (the dps numbers don't include mastery multiplier).

Cycle Code Legend:
State Descriptions: ABx,ABary,AM+-,2T10=w
x = number of AB stacks
y = remaining cooldown on Arcane Barrage
+ = Arcane Missiles proc visible
- = Arcane Missiles proc not visible
w = remaining time on 2T10 effect

0: AB0,ABar0,AM--,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Barrage  
1: AB0,ABar2.646122,AM--,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Barrage  
2: AB1,ABar0.7976553,AM--,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Barrage  
3: AB2,ABar0,AM--,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Barrage  
4: AB3,ABar0,AM--,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Barrage  
5: AB4,ABar0,AM--,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Barrage  
6: AB4,ABar0,AM++,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Missiles  2=Arcane Barrage  
7: AB3,ABar0,AM++,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Missiles  2=Arcane Barrage  
8: AB2,ABar0,AM++,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Missiles  2=Arcane Barrage  
9: AB0,ABar2.646122,AM++,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Missiles  2=Arcane Barrage  
10: AB0,ABar0.2729933,AM--,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Barrage  
11: AB1,ABar0.7976553,AM++,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Missiles  2=Arcane Barrage  
12: AB1,ABar0,AM--,2T10=0: 0=Arcane Blast  1=Arcane Barrage  

0000000000000: 20854.95 dps, 2346.973 mps
0000001110000: 13542.57 dps, -119.3259 mps, 2.96492 dpm tradeoff
0000011110010: 12698.63 dps, -370.3633 mps, 3.361812 dpm tradeoff
0000100110010: 12253.25 dps, -496.9156 mps, 3.51931 dpm tradeoff
0001000010010: 11727.45 dps, -631.3118 mps, 3.91229 dpm tradeoff
0001000010011: 11397.28 dps, -684.9124 mps, 6.159935 dpm tradeoff
0010000000011: 10696.31 dps, -735.1074 mps, 13.96493 dpm tradeoff
Wand: 1159.492 dps, -1149.924 mps, 22.99041 dpm tradeoff

So no real changes in optimal cycles compared to last hotfix except that the mana neutral cycle pair changes to AB spam and ABSpam234AM. Now in practice this has to be slightly modified because even if ABSpam234AM is on average a regen cycle it can swing far in the other direction with bad rng. So with this in mind using the next AB4ABar1234AM would be a bit more conservative choice and knowing that you can sometimes go beyond 4 AB without any real harm.

It should be noted for some that might not be aware that with 4T11 AB0 is more efficient than AM in terms of dpm conversion so if you're using some hyper regen method with Flame Orb it's better to use AB-AM instead of AM only. This is also evident in optimal cycles with AB4ABar1234AM being optimal as opposed to AB4ABar0234AM without 4T11.

EDIT: Regarding taking over the Arcane thread I don't think I'm the right person for the job. These kind of posts tend to be along the lines of conventional wisdom and from past experience I tend to make a lot of unconventional choices. That said I'm usually more than happy to provide feedback if anyone wants my input on some question.

#3 Wizeowel

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 11:49 AM

Thank you Seonid for rejuvenating this topic. Anyone who would like posts moved out of the old thread into this one, please contact me.

#4 Fth.Greatschock

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 04:17 PM

February 15
* Arcane Blast now costs 5% of base mana before stacking modifiers, down from 7%.
# Shard of Woe (Heroic trinket) now reduces the base mana cost of spells by 205, with the exception of Holy and Nature spells -- the base mana cost of Holy and Nature spells remains reduced by 405 with this trinket

The changes are live on EU realms, the manacost-tooltip of arcane blast with the new -205 manacost trinket already works, every other tooltip are still not updated though.
Is anyone else thinking the trinekt is WAAAAY to boring to justify ilvl 379? I dont feel the itemlevel reflected in the stats...

should result in:
Posted Image
Going to test today with full mastery/haste 370 gear on most of the hardmodes. Dont expect much though because the hardmodes are terrible for Arcane

#5 Fth.Greatschock

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 10:18 PM

My tests today showed me that Arcane still isn't a valueable specc with the recent hotfixes. Reducing the mana costs even further would still have the same outcome as it does now. When I raided earlier today, I was close to BiS-gear only missing the Theralion&Valiona trinket. I tried to reforge as close as possible to BiS-Gear by getting a lot of mastery and haste rating which resulted, combined with the Sinestra trinket (which is too bad now to justify its high item level), in a good feeling about mana-management and rotation in general.

As shown in the following picture, even with stacking Tott and dark intent (for an arcane mage!) and aligning cooldowns well you can't completely keep up with differnt classes. And I cant think of a better fight than Argaloth for Arcane since it rarely requires moving even in the Felstorm-phases. http://img839.images....benanntqqc.jpg

To sum it up, I believe the problem isn't the mana costs, it's more about the low damage of Arcane Blast! Even if Arcane blast's man acosts would be decreased even further, I can't see it keeping up with the other speccs in any way. Especially in further advanced tiers of content it is required to do more damage while you have 4 stacks of Arcane Blast up. While Argaloth seems to be a ideal encounter, most of the heroic bosses are differnt. And Arcane would usually not be the specc of your choice. The only fight I REALLY WANT to play arcane is Al'akir on 25 heroic. In contrast there are many bosses where I especially want to specc frost; for more survivability or to nova/slow adds for example. Some Encounters I want to play fire because of the hard execute phase or because of AOE damage. But where is the spot for Arcane? To justify playing arcane it should be changed dramatically and the damage should outweight the loss of AOE capacity and disadvange of moving.

Some logs of today: World of Logs - Real Time Raid Analysis

#6 Ilyawen

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 11:43 PM

I've been thinking about Arcane speccs for quite a bit now, and the new changes and your logs have spurred my interesst again Schock. I'm sorry if I'm speculating from this point on, but there obviously aren't many reports from players on your level except this one for Arcane.

Still, despite your disappointment with the specc, I think there might be a niche for it, in a very narrow frame of bosses. Your log already covers some of them, and I'll try to use that very thin slice of data as a base for comparison.

I know this isn't the place for guessing, but I'll also post some ideas about the bosses, hopefully to initiate some debate on that matter; since Arcane has been covered decently well in theory, we need more context-related discussion of the specc in practical raid environments to see weather there is a place for it, or might be in the next content.

- Magmaw: Headphase might be rewarding, and there is quite little movement during the fight overall as well. Your log actually shows that you did more damage this night with arcane than you did last week with fire, by a pretty clear margin actually. So I guess we could say arcane works there.

- Chimaeron: Not really burst-material, but its a low-movement singletarget fight, so it might work out for Arcane, given how it should do competetive or even very good single target DPS by now. Again, Greatschocks log shows that he did higher DPS, but he did seem to die early this week, leaving him with about the same ammount of DMG done overall. But I'd also conclude that arcane works here.

- Nefarian: Arcane seemed surprisingly competetive following just the two logs from Greatschock, but its probably just not worth it really.


Some other bosses that you didn't do as Arcane, but which I think might be worth it theoretically:

- Omnotron Council: Arcanotrons Power Generator effect (the ground thingy) and its shield mechanic also lead to quite high bursting-phases. I don't really see that being worth it though, given how the rest of the fight works out.

- Halfus: Now, this might seem completly stupid, but depending on how you do the fight, you might not be able or willing to use DOT-spreading from fire to its full effect, especially after the recent changes to the fight. That might leave a place for arcane to deal singletarget dmg. But to be honest, I severly doubt it.


Overall, its a very limited frame of utility for arcane, but if one is really interessted in the specc, it might be worth giving it a try.

#7 Silverwind

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Posted 17 February 2011 - 01:42 AM

I currently see Arcane only viable on a very limited number of fights, even after the hotfix:

- Argaloth: Arcane clearly wins here. Zero movement. A dedicated healer can let you keep standing in the fire.

- Magmaw: The vulnerable phase comes every 60-90 seconds which isn't really optimal because it forces burn phases without cooldowns, but overall I see Arcane comparable even to Fire's AE here if executed correctly.

- Omnotron: This seems to be the perfect Arcane fight on Heroic. The spellstealable buff lines up perfectly every 2 minutes with the burn phase, I estimate that about 40-45k DPS could be possible in BiS gear.

- Chimaeron: Arcane should come out above fire/frost here too. To eliminate movement losses, one could use glyphed Arcane Power for a GCD-free Blink at least once or twice in the fight.

- Valiona: While Fire should have a small lead because of multi-dotting, Arcane should be pretty solid here because of low movement requirements. The strong burst of Arcane is also great for the twilight realm on heroic.

I can't really comment on Nefarian and Al'Akir Heroic so far, but all other fights I can think of either involve too much movement or AE where Fire easily wins.

#8 Kavan

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Posted 17 February 2011 - 02:08 AM

It all depends on what you put as a design goal. Is a spec only viable if it is better than all other specs in all situations? I don't think that is the case. I don't think it has to be the best spec on even one fight for it to be considered viable. I'd actually prefer that players that don't enjoy arcane playstyle aren't forced to play it, because that inevitably leads to demands for changes to the playstyle.

#9 Fth.Greatschock

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Posted 17 February 2011 - 04:38 AM

- Magmaw: The vulnerable phase comes every 60-90 seconds which isn't really optimal because it forces burn phases without cooldowns, but overall I see Arcane comparable even to Fire's AE here if executed correctly.


About magmaw:
It kind of depends on your goals in the encounter and what you want to achieve. Playing raid-benefical or topping damage meters?
If you want to kill the boss on heroic, you dont attack the head during the vulnerable phases because you only want to kill the adds and maybe Dot the head.
If you want to Top damage meters you can play arcane and ignore all adds. Therefore this would be the best fight for arcane mages.
While ignoring the adds can wipe your raid, that would be trumped by playing even more selfish and spreading fire-dots on the maggots (which are kited on heroic usually), which would be a total waste.

This proves it isn't Arcane's tier of raiding like ICC or Totgc was, where you could go arcane even on bosses like Saurfang (with adds) and still be #1 on the adds + the Boss if executed properly.

#10 burygnome

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Posted 18 February 2011 - 07:10 AM

@Fth.Greatschock

If we are on magmaw topic. This really depend on your guild tactic. We have a tactic that let us attack head during whole vulnerable phase and then, there is no problem with being overcome with adds. maggots are kitted. I've been testing arcane lately on many single target encounters where normally frost is used instead of fire. I can only say that damage output is really similar to the frost spec. I didn't yet learn all about timing cooldowns (being arc tester for 1day in raiding environment. Even spaming Arcane Blast (after latest mana cut hotfix) mana is not runing away fast. Evocation every 2min with good timers on mana-gem can provide almost unlimited mana pool.

World of Logs - Real Time Raid Analysis

I tried yesterday arcane on Cho'gal 25m HC and the dmg is similar to Frost and I think even slightly better. We had two mages on few tries speced frost and arcane. Then due the tactic change I had to spec fire. But still, arcane is going good. Little more tweaks from blizz side and we're good

#11 Zephyrin

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Posted 18 February 2011 - 01:17 PM

Thank you for renovating this thread.
I am new to this forum, and I am having difficulty to understand and interpret Kavan's tables (those in frames starting with "code"). I also saw several of them in the now obsolete thread. Would it be possible to include an explanation, or a link to a place where it is explained, in the OP (in the same way as the section Nomenclature explains the representation of cycles) ? Thanks.

#12 Wizeowel

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Posted 18 February 2011 - 03:07 PM

I am new to this forum, and I am having difficulty to understand and interpret Kavan's tables (those in frames starting with "code").


The first block shows the possible states. For example, number 6 is "AB4,ABar0,AM++" it means AB shows 4 stacks, cooldown on ABar is up, and AM proc is showing. The second block shows a spell cycle, you will notice that each cycle has 13 numbers, each corresponds to a state from the first block. The number (0/1/2) corresponds to which spell you cast when in that state. Take the example of the cycle "0000001110000". This is saying to cast (0) Arcane Blast in every state except states 6, 7 and 8. If we look at those states, that is "AB2,ABar0,AM++" "AB3,ABar0,AM++" and "AB4,ABar0,AM++". In those states you cast (1) Arcane Missiles. So the overall instruction for that cycle is spam AB, unless AM proc is up and AB stacks are 2, 3 or 4 in which case cast AM. In shorthand this is ABspam234AM.

#13 VidX

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Posted 19 February 2011 - 03:14 AM

Very good update, I was waiting for this! However, I do have one question:

Has anyone ran any numbers on the effect Power Torrent (and other +int procs) have on Arcane output due to the max mana increasing but actual mana staying as it was?

I know on Fire and Frost that is still the best weapon enchant but is the same true with Arcane? Or is there a specific point where it actually has a negative return due to mastery vs the increase in spell power?

#14 DrRumpus

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Posted 19 February 2011 - 04:19 AM

I've compared it with simc to Hurricane and SP (wotlk reciepe) and it was still the best even on +2000 (hypothetical) mastery rating.

#15 Beilebog

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Posted 19 February 2011 - 04:46 PM

Also, don't forget that the mage armor mana returns are based off of maximum mana, so if you are good at staying near max during neutral phase, the increased returns can mean you have to burn AB4s to keep from goin over 100% when int procs run out.

Similarly, the spell power gain from mana gem is based off of maximum mana as well, which can mean a significant boost to its effects if used during an int proc or multiple int procs.

It seems pretty clear that the positive effects of int procs (if utilized correctly) should outweigh the negative effects for mastery.

#16 Roywyn

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Posted 20 February 2011 - 02:08 PM

I haven't posted any updates on optimal arcane cycles in some time, so this hotfix is a good opportunity to do so. This is with roughly 359 gear with 4T11, 25 man raid buffs (the dps numbers don't include mastery multiplier).

Seeing that there are repeated questions as to how the Arcane Decision Table is to be read, might I add adjustments to make it easier to see/imagine how the table is played for those who know what the numbers mean?
Could you consistently call 0 = Arcane Blast, 1 = Arcane Missiles, 2 = Arcane Barrage (or if that doesn't work due to triggers for AM, use 0 = ABla, 1 = ABar, 2 = AM)? That makes reading the table easier when I don't have to look whether 1 is AM or ABar in the current column. Also, could you add spaces after every 5 entries? "00010 00010 010" is much easier to trace than "0001000010010" when looking up when AM (or is it ABar in that column?) is to be cast. Starting with row 1 may also be more familiar than row 0, but I'm not a good person to judge that.
Chaotic Meta Gems in Cataclysm: http://elitistjerks....p2/#post1794256

DPS spec and class comparison in Naxxramas gear: http://code.google.c...ki/SampleOutput
The Blue Bar and you - the complete Fire Mage 2.4 mana compendium: http://elitistjerks....0-post3191.html

And doesn't proc on AM.
Neither does since 3.1.

#17 Daganie

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Posted 24 February 2011 - 04:31 AM

How viable is the four set bonus on pvp gear for raiding as arcane? After multiple optimizations using rawr time and again it tells me that not only will my pvp gear output more dps, but it will out perform it by a long stretch. Just curious if anyone else has seen this. The four set bonus provides an extra 160 in and a huge 5% damage bonus to arcane blast, which ends up being roughly 80-85% of my overall damage.

#18 druover

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Posted 24 February 2011 - 10:05 PM

While I agree the 2pc T11 PVE bonus is horrible, I do not think the PVP bonuses are worth the worthless resilience. I'm giving rough estimate numbers here, but you'd be giving up about 730 points in secondary stats for the resilience (for 359 tier gear...more for 372. Compare that to 160 int. I think the 4pcT11 PVE bonus of 10% reduced AB cast time would also be more valuable than the 5% damage increase, although they might be closer than they appear. In theory, 10% reduced cast time should be 10% increased damage, however, with the mage dynamics, this would not be the case. This reduced cast time compared to a static mp5 (would be the same for either scenario) would lead to shorter burn phase and also potentially having to do ABx3 AM instead of ABx4 AM sometimes (presumably 10% of the time) during the conserve phase.

I usually rely on RAWR to calculate these exact numbers. I'm suprised with the results you're getting though. I would think the PVE stats/bonus would outweigh the PVP.

Now PVP vs. 346 blues, then go with the PVP!

#19 druover

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Posted 28 February 2011 - 06:27 PM

OK, so this question is going to be laughed at, but there hasn't been much discussion on here recently, so I thought I'd throw it out:

How long are people typically holding on to their 4pT10 (264's) bonus? I know the saying goes cata greens are better than any wotlk gear, but I dont think this is the case for arcane. I tried on dummies using my 4pcT10 gear and then equipping about an average of blue 325 gear instead, and I was doing more damage with the 4pcT10. That 18% mirror image buff during the burn phase is just HUGE. Part of this too is I use an on use sp trinket, so that magnifies the burn phase even more.

I'm assuming in heroics and especially in raids this will definitely go away as you'll need all the extra stats for extra hit, but is there anyone else out there finding their dps is much better for the level 85 regular instances still using the 4pT10??? Or am I the only one this dumb lol.

#20 Kavan

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Posted 28 February 2011 - 07:41 PM

It will depend a lot on what other gear you acquired while leveling. I haven't found 4T10 particularly strong, but I used 2T10 about one week into raiding until I got better pieces. Kind of related to the previous question, I also used 2 piece PVP set for quite some time. If you have the Vicious pieces those are item level 365 and the higher item level more than makes up for resilience until you have 4T11. In the end it all depends on what you have available, I would use whatever is best in your case, regardless of if it looks strange.




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