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WotLK - Complete Mage Compendium (3.3.3 live)


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#41 Swindley

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 10:14 AM

- A arcane/fire mage's first 5 points in a frost tree, 2 are wasted. Ice Floes is acceptable, but only 3 points - the other 2 points (Improved frostbolt, frost warding) are not.


Are you sure you have read the tooltip of frost warding properly? It's no longer just frost ward.

It affects both fire and frost ward for a chance of returning 30% mana and totally absorbing the spell. I'd rate that as kinda usefull regarding of spec. I'm sure there will be some random dmg in encounters (at least frost, being Northrend), not to mention frost/fire dmg in pvp.

So it's exactly like your example of imp fireblast for a frost mage. It's not crazy good, but it IS usefull in some circumstances.
Off course, the extra effect on frost/ice armor isnt exactly great, but that doesnt really matter.

edit: think about the possibilities in combination with the fire equivalent, so you'll either reflect or absorb the spell + gain mana, and at least one of them will happen quite often. Very cool imo:)




Personally I think alot of the new abilities etc are cool, and I'm starting to think of posibilites, combos or just plain fun uses.

Some people are too pessimistic imo. It's like when mirror image was mentioned. My first thought was "wow cool, I've allways wanted that, could be fun", but some immediately started "it'll probably suck!!" without knowing anything about the spell.
What's up with that?

And yes, I've read through all ~200 pages now:)

#42 Tyrian

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 10:30 AM

I'd rate that as kinda usefull


We'd have to agree to disagree there currently, knowing how much the Wards has been used from SSC->Sunwell. I agree that if there is more random damage in future the value this could change, but we'll need details on raid encounters before we can review that. You still walk the line of "Situationally ok for X boss with 30% procrate, useless for Y boss" which im not comfortable with, especially if theres only a few boss X's. (However, some people might feel this is OK for a tier 1 talent - just a difference of opinion)

My main irk with the Ward spells is the GCD - if we're going to be encouraged to use them more often, every CD (via a talent like this and more incoming raid damage from bosses). Would vastly prefer them having no GCD, but im not sure whether theres a specific balance reason that would make that unreasonable or not.

#43 Leialyn

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 10:36 AM

Leialyn care to make a short demo video of how it was working? and if possible test it in a duel?

There you go (Vimeo doesn't like me, so I just uploaded it on my webspace)
http://www.radonspac.../livingbomb.avi (rightclick, save as...)

As you can see, only when the left mob hits me, the explosion goes off. When it's stunned nothing happens.
The 6 stacked Combustion is not consumed by the explosion but it uses the increased crit rate ;)

The explosion originates from the player, not the target. i.e. I can cast living bomb on a target and run away, all targets that are within 10yards of my mage are getting hit for explosion damage every 2 seconds while the tick damage is ONLY happening to the target far away regardless if mobs are around it. Only when the target I cast living bomb on is within 10yards of the mage, will other targets take tick damage, along with explosion damage. It's all very buggy and should be fixed eventually.

Yep confirmed. Guess there is a lot to fix with that spell.

#44 MasterDinadan

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 10:44 AM

2) Gear. Reduction from 16 ->9 percent hit required and an expected Moonkin (in their current form) in every 25 man raid means that hit on gear can be deemphasized. It's easier to make attractive gear at every raid level if you know exactly what the players need. Different specs requiring different hit leads in part to some of the awful itemization witnessed in tbc, in the extreme case where warlocks were craving hit and SPs were almost ignoring it.


I wouldn't say that's a bad thing at all. If all of the cloth casters value the same stats, they will all end up using the same gear. Cloth gear will have the same value to everyone regardless of its stats and THAT makes for uninteresting itemization.

There's too extremes. On one end, they could make all casters value stats the same, and then they all end up wanting the same items. If two dps cloth chests drop in a raid, either one is strictly better than the other or they are basically the same with just a different look.

On the other hand, they could restrict items to certain classes. This one is a mage robe, this one is a warlock robe. They can't use each other's stuff. This is like tier pieces. It works fine for tier pieces as this highlights the differences in the classes, but surely you can see what a nightmare it would be if every piece of equipment was class-specific.

So the middle ground is have a large number of items which are AVAILABLE to multiple classes, but may be better for certain classes than others. Two robes could drop in the same raid, but a mage might say "Robe A is way better, I'm going for that one." while a shadow priest says "Robe B is better for me, I'm going for that one." They each want something different, but if a mage really wanted to use robe B he could (let's suppose robe A didn't drop and robe B dropped two weeks in a row).

Considering the spell power change is shifting itemization in the direction of having the same gear for dps and healers, it would not surprise me at all if they shifted itemization in other ways to make different specs and classes desire different items.

#45 Saruk

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 01:12 PM

Wasted talent points should never be acceptable, even if its only 2. Talent trees must cater for "+20" specs in a manner that keeps this statement true. Dont think that to make a talent 'useful', it needs to be fabulously strong either. Improved Fireblast might not be the best use of talent points for a frost mage (picking up some of the fire tree) in raids, yet its still useful to some degree and not truly wasted like in the Frost Warding/Improved frostbolt case. If blizzard really does like the frost warding talent, why not alter it into a Armor Warding talent and provide a small benefit to mage armor too. Wham, suddenly the (small) extra passive regen has found a use for your friendly fire/arcane mages and the points have a genuine use again. Theres so many possible ways to move/alter talents to fix the wasted points issue, it just seems stupid to keep them as is.


I don't see how Bliz is changing their mentality around lower tier talents with this xpac compared to the last one (or even the original game). If you get IV as a fire mage now you are essentially wasting talents on everything except EP in the frost tree - especially as a raiding mage where few of those lower talents off any real utility.

I understand where you are coming from regarding 'complete waste' versus 'small utility', but that is open to interpretation. You might argue having imp frostbolt for a fire mage is better than a shorter cd on fireblast for a frost mage - depending on your play style etc. One's things for sure though, you won't be including fireblast in a frost rotation nor frostbolt in a fire one - so you could still argue from a raiding perspective they are both useless and wasted talents.

The big issue is not so much if lower tier talents have utility, it's how low spec-defining talents are in a tree.

#46 Lhivera

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 01:29 PM

I can't help but feel we've gone slightly offtopic here or at least into a personal tit for tat.
Here's the way I see it, across all casters they homogenized hit from talents, this is in an effort to make general caster gear and buffs more universally acceptable to all classes.

...

Now I'm not saying that 3% hit for fire costing 8 points in another tree instead of 3 is going to make a major difference, rather that for ease for spec ,raid and item balance it makes sense to me for it to be as easily accessible as possible.


I think "not going to make a major difference" is what makes it acceptable. After all, it is not homogenized across classes.

- Death Knights require 8 in Frost for physical attacks, 3 in Unholy for spells for 3% hit on all their attacks.

- Druids require 27 in Balance for 4% to hit with their spells, and can provide another 3% for themselves as well as everyone else at 38 points.

- Unless I'm missing it, Paladins have no +hit chance talent for either spells or melee attacks.

- Priests can only increase the hit on their Shadow spells, 8 points into Shadow.

- Shaman require 28 in Elemental for +3% hit.

- Warlocks need to spend 11 points -- 3 in Affliction, 8 in Destruction -- to get +3% hit on all their spells, which is problematic for people who want to make a two-tree build using Demonology as one of the trees.


4) A personal one here, it's now approaching the 2nd expansion, I believe we're past the point of having to take wasted talent points for a spec that will have a popular and clear purpose i.e. Raiding, PvP
I would consider any talent that adds a zero or trivial advantage in the intended area of play to wasted.


I think Blizzard would generally disagree with you on this. Blizzard does not view WoW as the strictly segregated game that many players view it as; they design the game as if people are not going to limit themselves to just raiding, or just PvP. This is the same reason that while some people here may view Winter's Grasp as a 7-point talent (because you need Shatter to get full benefit from it), Blizzard doesn't, because Blizzard feels that Shatter has value to everyone who takes it even though it's not useful in a raid environment.

In short, Blizzard doesn't feel that those two points in Frost Warding would be wasted, because they can be useful when you head into a PvP or soloing environment.


Does it means that now that it can be partially resisted we get the 5% coefficient penalty back?


The 5% coefficient penalty wasn't there to offset the lack of partial resists, it's there to offset the extra utility of the spell (the snare). So I would be very surprised to see the coefficient change.
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#47 kadgar

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 01:50 PM

The 5% coefficient penalty wasn't there to offset the lack of partial resists, it's there to offset the extra utility of the spell (the snare). So I would be very surprised to see the coefficient change.

Has Frostfire Bolt the same penalty?

#48 Swindley

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 01:55 PM

Btw one more thing, then back on topic.
You don't NEED 3% more hit. There's no magical road to extreme dps by being hitcapped. It's simply ~3% more dps for 3 talent points, it's not a great deal. You don't HAVE to take 8 points in frost to get it, just get something else instead. For example full fire, and putting the rest in arcane for focus magic instead is a build I've been playing around with. It even allows some cool pvp/solo talents as well.

If you have 2 talent choices, one gives 3% more dmg and one give 3% more hit, I'd actually take the 3% dmg talent instead since it's usefull everywhere, trash, solo, pvp, and gives about the same end result.

Don't obsess about hit. It's more an issue on gear since +hit is a "cheap" stat to increase, it's not the same for talents with 1 point for 1%.
I'm not saying hit is bad, it's great, but it's just a dps stat like everything else, except it's cheap in ilvl cost and caps out.

#49 Leialyn

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 01:56 PM

The 5% coefficient penalty wasn't there to offset the lack of partial resists, it's there to offset the extra utility of the spell (the snare). So I would be very surprised to see the coefficient change.

Ya, it just sucks that in raiding environments theres not much of the utility of the spell left. For soloing/trash its absolutely understandable but against raidbosses it hurts a bit (I don't wanna start another QQ).

Has Frostfire Bolt the same penalty?

actually yes.
Maybe they are trying to offset this with the 5% spelldamage on the dot.

#50 Lhivera

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 02:16 PM

Don't obsess about hit. It's more an issue on gear since +hit is a "cheap" stat to increase, it's not the same for talents with 1 point for 1%.
I'm not saying hit is bad, it's great, but it's just a dps stat like everything else, except it's cheap in ilvl cost and caps out.


Aye, this is absolutely true. In fact, it could very well be argued that a talent that provides 0.6% Crit per talent point is worth more than a talent that provides 1.0% Hit per talent point, since it's worth more Rating points.
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#51 Buanna

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 02:33 PM

2) Gear. Reduction from 16 ->9 percent hit required


This is still heavily disputed.

#52 Stein

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 05:42 PM

From Ronwyn's rate my build post:

If we can make Arcane Blast spam work with sufficient gear:
(Note that an (ABar-AB*2) spammed cycle under haste is not useful since ABar is worse DPS and DPM.)

With WC:
7661 - Spammed Arcane Blast as 50/21/0 (17 DPM)
7881 - Spammed Arcane Blast as 50/3/18 (18 DPM)


Is it worthwhile to cast the 2xspeed MBAM when it procs? (AB is back to proc'ing MBAM, right?)

#53 Lhivera

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 07:54 PM

The same day this thread went up, I started a similar compilation on my own site. There's plenty of info here that I haven't duplicated (I'm really aiming for this to be an update to my old Mage Mechanics FAQ, rather than a "here's what's changed in WotLK" document). However, I have put a few tables together on my page that some folks may find useful; feel free to swipe them for the top post if they seem to fit.

Man Out of Time - Lhivera's Mage Reference (WotLK Edition)

(Please note that it's not finished.)
At Veridian Dynamics, we can even make radishes so spicy, people can't eat them. But we're not, because people can't eat them.

#54 Qbert

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 08:01 PM

I think there needs to be more practicality applied to some of these. In most raiding scenarios the first Mage accepted into a raid will be Frost simply due to the imp WE talent, therefor any 50/3/17 spec assuming the presence of Imp Scorch assumes either a 3rd Mage with a Fire/FFB spec or the Frost Mage specced into it and applying the debuff (simultaneously sacrificing a portion of DPS by casting Scorch every 30 seconds). Both assumptions are somewhat unrealistic considering either a 3rd raid slot given to a Mage or a Frost Mage responsible for the Scorch debuff instead of the Arcane Mage with a 50/21/0 or 51/20/0 spec.

I understand theorycrafting assuming the maximum of potential but there is always a limit to where potential requires unrealistic assumptions. Such would be equivalent to assuming 100% improved shadowbolt uptime for finding Destruction Warlock damage potential. It seems to me that when approaching the 'damage testing' phase of Beta we should maintain a sense of realism to avoid inflated damage test results and leave the class unable to realistically reach the potential that the class may be balanced upon.

The same checks-and-balances mentality needs to be taken with mana issues (which it often is) so that Living Bomb and Focus Magic aren't too heavily weighted into single target damage potential tests while assuming unrealistic mana-support. I just don't want to see the class' damage fall short for yet another expansion because under specific unrealistic circumstances, using a specific raid matrix, getting specific mana support and specific class/spec utility assistance ... the class can have competitive damage. Meanwhile, any case where the assumptions aren't included leaves the class lacking.

#55 Luk3

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 08:06 PM

The same day this thread went up, I started a similar compilation on my own site. There's plenty of info here that I haven't duplicated (I'm really aiming for this to be an update to my old Mage Mechanics FAQ, rather than a "here's what's changed in WotLK" document). However, I have put a few tables together on my page that some folks may find useful; feel free to swipe them for the top post if they seem to fit.

Man Out of Time - Lhivera's Mage Reference (WotLK Edition)

(Please note that it's not finished.)


On the page you linked i read that heroism and drums of battle don't stack, but from my experience i see casting time decreasing if drums are used with heroism.

#56 Zeldyrr

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 08:29 PM

I think there needs to be more practicality applied to some of these. In most raiding scenarios the first Mage accepted into a raid will be Frost simply due to the imp WE talent, ...


If this remains the case, then this is failed game design. Heck, I've been a frost raider from ZG/MC thru BT and even I think making a frost spec the obvious first choice is a bad thing. Blizzard's stated goal is that all specs are welcome in raid.

Seems to me we need to work to get the Improved WE talent changed--the mana regen is too powerful. This has two negative effects. One, it makes frost mages a "must have" spec which again is bad game design. Two, it makes frost mages into Shadow Priests 2.0--show up for raids plz, but hide in the back with your WE and don't die, we need the mana.

If I had beta access I'd start a thread but if someone else wants to start one I'd appreciate it.

#57 Tyrian

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 08:39 PM

If I had beta access I'd start a thread but if someone else wants to start one I'd appreciate it.


I agree. I'm a little concerned that issues such as Imp Scorch placement and "First mage in the raid must be frost" don't already have prominent threads on the beta forum devoted to them. WoW Forums -> Mage Discussion . Really hope it doesn't go unnoticed by the developers who might not always read EJ, where its discussed much more thoroughly.

The same day this thread went up, I started a similar compilation on my own site.


Definetely a great read and a solid resource.

#58 Qbert

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 08:49 PM

Seems to me we need to work to get the Improved WE talent changed--the mana regen is too powerful. This has two negative effects. One, it makes frost mages a "must have" spec which again is bad game design. Two, it makes frost mages into Shadow Priests 2.0--show up for raids plz, but hide in the back with your WE and don't die, we need the mana.


I can't say I find it a bad thing that there is one most desirable spec, but important that all specs are always desired regardless of whether or not there is room for such a spec. I also don't know if you could call a Frost Mage a "must have" spec until we see what mana issues arise without one.

Currently I think there is a bigger problem than making Arcane/Fire as desirable as Frost ... which is making Fire/Arcane damage desirable without the requirement of outside help, and making Fire/Arcane desirable without a Destruction Warlock and/or Moonkin in the raid to consider Imp Scorch "utility". If a Destruction Warlock and Moonkin are not in the raid, then both WC and Imp Scorch debuffs are considered Mage-only debuffs, lose any classification as "utility" and thus demand the non-Frost specced Mages deal competitive top-end damage or they are not valuable raid members.

You can't assume a Destro Lock and/or Moonkin exists, just like you can't assume an Arcane/Fire Mage receives an Innervate or Shadow Priest to consistently provide Focus Magic or Living Bomb damage.

#59 Lgs

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 08:51 PM

Instead of nerfing frost, they could give arc/fire the same benefits... Obviously those trees need some individual work too, but I don't see being a battery that bad (assuming they will never give us a huge DPS advantage again).

How about MoE for the whole raid?

#60 Lhivera

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Posted 18 August 2008 - 09:00 PM

On the page you linked i read that heroism and drums of battle don't stack, but from my experience i see casting time decreasing if drums are used with heroism.


You're correct, I need to fix that. Percentage-based external buffs don't stack, but rating-based ones do.


If this remains the case, then this is failed game design. Heck, I've been a frost raider from ZG/MC thru BT and even I think making a frost spec the obvious first choice is a bad thing. Blizzard's stated goal is that all specs are welcome in raid.

Seems to me we need to work to get the Improved WE talent changed--the mana regen is too powerful. This has two negative effects. One, it makes frost mages a "must have" spec which again is bad game design. Two, it makes frost mages into Shadow Priests 2.0--show up for raids plz, but hide in the back with your WE and don't die, we need the mana.


I agree that the result is bad, but I don't think Imp. WE is the key to fixing it. It may be a necessary part of fixing it, I'm not sure, it depends on how common the other regen buffs from other classes are and whether Imp. WE is considered necessary, or if it's just overkill. Improved Scorch's accessibility to a deep Frost Mage is the larger problem.
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