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The Arcane thread


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#1 manly

manly

    Soda Popinski

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 04:15 PM

This thread is dedicated towards deep-arcane builds specifically. For now, the thread is under (heavy) construction because quite frankly there is a lot of ground to cover.

For the time being (until the math is more worked out/confirmed/written down/tested), I will put my focus more on commonly accepted playstyles more than anything else without any maths to back to it. This is not an intent on my par to just 'lay-it-down' without proof -- understand the math is rather tedious.

Arcane differs greatly from the other specs in the mentality behind it. It rewards the informed. It rewards properly planning ahead, both from a micro and a macro perspective. Most of the playstyle revolves around managing DPM more than anything else. As such, I will put an extreme focus on DPM values and making sure everyone understands why. A spell always has 2 costs, one of which is the time spent casting it, the other one being the mana spent for it. Arcane, unlike the other specs, needs to take into account mana cost of spells because it can't sustain its max dps cycle. The idea being here, if you can't sustain the max dps rotation, then the next logical step is to maximize the damage you can deal with the mana you have (aka: maximize DPM).

Also, before anyone asks, only specs with 51 arcane points in them apply. There isn't a good 21pt talent that would mandate skipping arcane barrage, or any competing talent really.



Some numbers
[table]level difference|hit cap % PVE|hit cap % PVP|hit rating PVE (lvl 80)
-4|0%|0%|0
-3|1%|1%|26.23199272
-2|2%|2%|52.46398544
-1|3%|3%|78.69597816
0|4%|4%|104.92797088
+1|5%|5%|131.1599636
+2|6%|6%|157.39195632
+3 (skull level boss)|17%|13%|445.94387624
+4|28%|20%|734.49579616
+5|39%|27%|1023.04771608[/table]

[table]Rating|Level 60|Level 70|Level 80
Spell Hit|8|12.61538506|26.23199272
Spell Critical Strike|14|22.07692337|45.90598679
Spell Haste|10|15.76923275|32.78998947[/table]

[table]%|Spell Hit Rating (lvl 80)|Typical case|draenai %|Spell Hit with draenai
17%|445.94387624|hit cap|16%|419.71188352
14%|367.24789808|EP or (no EP + misery/improved faerie fire)|13%|341.01590536
11%|288.55191992|EP + misery/improved faerie fire|10%|262.3199272
8%|209.85594176|EP+AF (57/3/11) + misery/improved faerie fire|7%|183.62394904
1%|26.23199272[/table]

[table]Spell|Talents / metagem|Crit multiplier (no T7)|Crit multiplier (with 4pcT7)| Note
arcane spell|(no CSD)|150%|152.5%
arcane spell|CSD|154.5%|157.225%
arcane spell|spell power|175%|177.5%
arcane spell|spell power + CSD|181.75%|184.475%
frost spell|ice shards|200%|202.5%
frost spell|ice shards + CSD|209%|211.725%
Fireball/Frostfire bolt|ignite|210%|213.5%
Fireball/Frostfire bolt|ignite + CSD|216.3%|220.115%
Fireball/Frostfire bolt|ignite + burnout|245%|248.5%
Fireball/Frostfire bolt|ignite + burnout + CSD|254.45%|258.265%
Frostfire bolt|ignite + burnout + ice shards|315%|318.5%
Frostfire bolt|ignite + burnout + ice shards + CSD|330.75%|334.565%
--
am (glyphed)|spell power|187.5%|190%
am (glyphed)|spell power + CSD|195.375%|198.1%
blizzard|spell power + 2/3 ice shards|208%|210.5%|57/3/11
blizzard|spell power + 2/3 ice shards + CSD|217.72%|220.445%|57/3/11
blizzard|spell power + 3/3 ice shards|225%|227.5%|56/3/12
blizzard|spell power + 3/3 ice shards + CSD|236.25%|238.975%|56/3/12
[/table]
(crit multiplier formula listed in the formula section)


Specs
57/3/11 - cookie cutter
http://talent.mmo-ch...rKJdF2wX,,11403
57/3/11 - what I recommend (3/3 IA, 3/5 pushback protection, 3/3 ice shards, only 3% hit total from spec)
http://talent.mmo-ch...SrTpp-gM,,11403


Please be aware that the information below is horribly out of date. It is being kept there for copy/paste purpose for when I update it.
[b]Rotations[/b]
[table]cycle|[color=purple]dps[/color]|[color=blue]mps[/color]|[color=darkred]dpm[/color]|[color=grey][size=1]dpm tradeoff (next cycle)[/size][/color]|[color=grey][size=1]dpm tradeoff (cycle 2)[/size][/color]|general use|note
AB3+ [mbarr]|[color=purple]5495.957[/color]|[color=blue]387.9541[/color]|[color=darkred]14.17[/color]||[color=grey][size=1]1.85[/size][/color]|mana dump / during AP|cast mbarr only at 3 stack. [color=purple][b]*[/b][/color] see note2 below
[b]AB AB AB ([mbarr] [i]or[/i] abarr)[/b]|[b][color=purple]5132.355[/color][/b]|[b][color=blue]190.8791[/color][/b]|[b][color=darkred]26.89[/color][/b]|[color=grey][size=1][b]1.85[/b][/size][/color]||[b]main cycle / during AP[/b]|
[b]AB AB AB AM[/b]|[b][color=purple]5070.111[/color][/b]|[b][color=blue]157.7089[/color][/b]|[b][color=darkred]32.15[/color][/b]|[color=grey][size=1][b]1.88[/b][/size][/color]|[color=grey][size=1][b]1.88[/b][/size][/color]|[b]main cycle / during AP[/b]|
[b]AB AB ([mbarr] [i]or[/i] AB AM)[/b]|[b][color=purple]5031.662[/color][/b]|[b][color=blue]146.4452[/color][/b]|[b][color=darkred]34.36[/color][/b]|[color=grey][size=1][b]3.41[/b][/size][/color]|[color=grey][size=1][b]2.27[/b][/size][/color]|[b]main cycle[/b]|
AB ([AB mbarr] [i]or[/i] abarr)|[color=purple]4760.778[/color]|[color=blue]87.75334[/color]|[color=darkred]54.25[/color]|[color=grey][size=1]4.62[/size][/color]|[color=grey][size=1]3.60[/size][/color]|mana saving|[color=purple][b]*[/b][/color] see note below
AB ([mbarr] [i]or[/i] abarr)|[color=purple]4677.5[/color]|[color=blue]74.82857[/color]|[color=darkred]62.51[/color]|[color=grey][size=1]6.44[/size][/color]|[color=grey][size=1]3.92[/size][/color]|mana saving|[color=purple][b]*[/b][/color] see note below
AB AM|[color=purple]4184.583[/color]|[color=blue]32.69562[/color]|[color=darkred]127.99[/color]|[color=grey][size=1]11.71[/size][/color]|[color=grey][size=1]5.99[/size][/color]|mana saving|
[/table]
[size=1]([b][][/b] denotes conditional statement. Cast only on missile barrage proc.)[/size]
[size=1]([b]example:[/b] [color=purple]AB AB ([mbarr] [i]or[/i] AB AM)[/color] indicates: "AB AB AB AM" (without mbarr proc) and "AB AB mbarr" when mbarr procs)[/size]
[size=1]([b]clarification:[/b] [color=purple]AB3+[/color] refers to AB spamming. It also means you must cast at least 3 AB)[/size]

note: be aware that (AB abarr) can fail to work if abarr is still on cooldown (this will typically happens during bloodlust + icy veins). You probably want to use a different rotation during haste cooldowns.

note 2: as far as I am concerned, the top realistic DPS rotation of an arcane mage is the 2nd rotation. The reason being that you will consume mana faster than before due to the increased AP uptime%. Realistically I don't believe you will end up doing much AB spamming barring really short fights.

Understanding DPM tradeoffs
\mbox{DPM tradeoff} = \frac{\Delta dps}{\Delta mps}
A DPM tradeoff represents roughly the extra DPM you get from 1 mana by spending that mana on another cycle.
In other words, it represents the extra damage you will deal from switching rotations (assuming the initial rotation would have ran you OOM). It also indirectly indicates the value of mana, and how much more damage more mana will give you in total. Keep in mind here a very important detail; it also assumes the fight duration will not change for the dpm tradeoff to make sense.

The reason why DPM is misleading and gives you the impression you get a tremendously cheaper rotation is because it totally ignores duration (ie: the dps element). If you had infinite time, then yes, follow exclusively the optimum DPM value to maximize total damage dealt with the mana available. If constrained by time (99.9% of cases), then you want to look at dpm tradeoffs rather than dpm.


Presence of Mind
optimal use: last AB of any rotation

1- POM-AM doesn't work. I mean, its not going to finish your channel in 1.5s. Additionally, I think POM doesn't apply the 30% crit to AM due to the wotlk-beta bug of POM+AM spam (ie: permanent 30% crit).
2- POM-abarr is nice and all, but doing so will not take advantage of the cast-time-reduction element of POM. Only the 30% more crit part. As such it is not recommended. Sure, you do gain 18% more damage over any AB (AB4+ spam), but the cast time reduction is worth more than that 18%.
3- POM-AB is the only other alternative (well, that and FFB, but the math is inconclusive on that). You gain 1s of dps time by reducing the cast time from 2.5->1.5. Thinking about it, the most logical choice for AB would be the last AB of your rotation, because it has the biggest damage multiplier (ie: 30% more crit from POM is better used coupled with the highest damage multiplier).

4- As a general note, I recommend generally to go for one extra AB on your rotation where you cast POM, in a case where you had planned to do some mana dumping at the end of the fight. It makes sense to use an extra 18% more damage on AB.

It is currently not proven whether or not POM-AB during cooldowns (lust/IV) is better than outside of cooldowns. The reason being that reducing 2.5->1.5 is worth a lot more than reducing, for example 1.4->1.0.


AOE
most burst: POM/AP/IV/blizzard + flamestrike + blizzard spam (this is counter-intuitive; we use POM for blizzard for the 30% crit, and the instant cast stays on for the following flamestrike (which will not get the 30% crit))
ranged aoe: AP/IV/blizzard + POM/flamestrike
close aoe: same as ranged. do not go in melee range.

The above rotations are what I personally use. I haven't mathed-out to figure which is optimum. As such, there is a possibility the above is not optimum.


Threat management
[table]Class|Name|Note
Mage|Invisibility|
Mage|Mirror Image|
Warrior|Vigilance|31 prot
Warrior|Intervene|
Paladin|Hand of Salvation|
Priest|Pain Suppression|41 disc
Hunter|Misdirection|
Mage - talent|Arcane Subtlety|
Mage - talent|Burning Soul|Does not stack with frost channeling
Mage - talent|Frost Channeling|Does not stack with burning soul
[/table]
Generally you want to delay invisibility as much as possible, because the more you wait, the more effective it becomes.

Based on my personal experience, waiting for the boss to reach 70% hp before using invis will allow you to go all out for the remainder of the fight. Of course, this is only a rule of thumb and assumes that you produce more threat than your tank, and that you will catch up to him. You can play with the number a bit if you can afford to use invis at the end of the fight (ie: finish the fight with >130% threat). It has proven to work well, however, expanded math could give optimum values (if anyone is willing to do it).


Consumables
[table]|Flask|Food|Potion|Gem
Best||//|Potion of Speed|
Alternative||//|| (not recommended w/ 2pc t7)
Alternative-||/||
[/table]


Glyphs
[table]0/53/18|18/53/0|57/3/11|51/20/0
|||
|| / | /
***| ***|| ***
|||
[/table]


for the time being, the information below is out of date. The FFB thread has more updated info although the FFB thread doesnt have the new info on flamestrike and 3.3 recent changes.
[b]Formulas[/b]
base formula for all mage spells (thx to Zaldinar for corrections)
[quote][b]avg_damage_per_cast_noncrit[/b] = [i](avg_cast_base_dmg + (spell_coefficient + empowered_fire + empowered_frostbolt + arcane_empowerment) * final_spell_dmg) * (firepower + ffb_glyph + spell_impact) * pwf * piercing_ice * coe * arcane_instability [* frostbolt_glyph] [* arcane_blast_buff] [* arcane_power] [* molten_fury] [* ferocious_inspiration] [* tricks_of_the_trade][/i]
[b]spell_coefficient[/b] = [color=gray][size=1](see table below for appropriate coefficients)[/size][/color]
[b]avg_damage_per_cast[/b] = [i]avg_damage_per_cast_noncrit * (1 + final_crit% * (crit_multiplier - 1))[/i]
[b]final_cast_time[/b] = [i]talented_cast_time / (1 + total_haste_rating / haste_rating_per_percent / 100) / netherwind_presence / wrath_of_air [/ retribution_aura or imp_moonkin_aura] [/ bloodlust or power_infusion] [/ icy veins] [/ berserking][/i]
[b]spell_dps[/b] = [i]avg_damage_per_cast * chance_to_hit% / final_cast_time[/i]


[color=purple]ex: frostfire bolt -- molten fury + berserking(20%) + bloodlust + icy veins + 4pct7 + CSD included, 2000 spelldmg, 55% crit, 500 haste rating[/color]
avg_damage_per_cast_noncrit = ( (722+838)/2 + (3/3.5 + 0.15) * 2000 spelldmg) * (1.1 + 0.02) * 1.03 * 1.06 * 1.13 [* 1.12] [i]=[/i] 4324.43
avg_damage_per_cast = 4324.43 * (1 + 0.55 * (3.34565 - 1)) = 9903.41
final_cast_time = 3 / (1 + 500/32.78998947/100) / 1.05 / 1.03 / 1.3 / 1.2 / 1.2 = 1.29
spell_dps = 9903.41 * 1 / 1.29 = 7677.06 dps

[color=purple]ex: arcane barrage(2.5/3.5 coef) -- ab_glyph(3%) + 3_stack_ab_buff + arcane power(20%) + torment the weak + berserking(20%) + bloodlust + icy veins + 4pct7 + CSD included, 2000 spelldmg, 55% crit, 500 haste rating[/color]
avg_damage_per_cast_noncrit = ( (936+1144)/2 + (2.5/3.5) * 2000 spelldmg) * (1.06) * 1.13 * 1.03 * 1.54 [* 1.2] [i]=[/i] 5628.20
avg_damage_per_cast = 5628.20 * (1 + 0.55 * (1.84475 - 1)) = 8243.13
final_cast_time = 1.5 / (1 + 500/32.78998947/100) / 1.06 / 1.05 / 1.03 / 1.3 / 1.2 / 1.2 = 0.61
spell_dps = 8243.13 * 1 / 0.61 = 13513.33 dps [color=gray][size=1](ignoring GCD cap)[/size][/color][/quote]
notes/gotchas:
ffb glyph and spell impact are applied a very odd way, as shown in the formula above. Some frost calculations are not 100% known, given they give sometimes results outside of predicted values. As such, this should be only used to get a rough idea. 
The above list is simplified and doesn't lists every possible non-stacking buffs. For a proper list, check the FFB thread or [url=http://raidcomp.mmo-champion.com/]MMO-Champion RaidComp[/url] . For example, 'coe' refers to any of (Ebon Plaguebringer/Curse of the Elements+Malediction/Earth and Moon). 

crit multiplier formula
[quote][b]crit_multiplier[/b] = [i](1 + ( ((1.5 [* CSD]) - 1) * (1 [+ ice_shards] [+ burnout] [+ spell_power] [+ 4pct7] [+ am_glyph]) )) [* ignite][/i]

[color=purple]ex: frostfire bolt -- ignite + burnout + ice shards + CSD + 4pct7[/color]
crit_multiplier = (1 + ( ((1.5 * 1.03) - 1) * (1 + 1 + 0.5 + 0.05) )) * 1.4 = 334.565%[/quote]

Base mana
[table]Class|Level 70|[color=blue]Level 80[/color]
Mage|2241|[color=blue]3268[/color]
Druid|2370|3496
Warlock|2871|3856
Priest|2620|3863
Paladin|2953|4394
Shaman|3457|4396
Hunter|3383|5046[/table]
[table]Spell|Coefficient|Base damage|Talents affecting the dot|Mana cost %|Mana cost (lvl 80)|Notes
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=47610]Frostfire Bolt[/url]|3.0/3.5|722-838 + 90/9s|pwf, firepower, arcane instability, piercing ice|14%|457|1 tick / 3s
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=55360]Living Bomb[/url]|0.80/12s + 0.40|1380/12s + 690|pwf ([b]not[/b] firepower)|22%|718|1 tick / 3s
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42891]Pyroblast[/url]|1.15 + 0.20/12s|1210-1531 + 452/12s|pwf, firepower, arcane instability|22%|718|1 tick / 3s
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42859]Scorch[/url]|1.5/3.5|382-451||8%|261|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42833]Fireball[/url]|3.5/3.5|898-1143 + 116/8s|pwf, firepower, arcane instability|19%|620|1 tick / 2s
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42873]Fire Blast[/url]|1.5/3.5|925-1095||21%|686|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42926]Flamestrike[/url]|0.2427 + 0.1220 (per tick)|876-1071 + 780/8s|pwf, firepower, arcane instability|30%|980|1 tick / 2s
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42925]Flamestrike (rank 8)[/url]|0.2427 + 0.1220 (per tick)|699-854 + 620/8s|pwf, firepower, arcane instability|30%|980|1 tick / 2s
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42940]Blizzard[/url]|8.0/3.5/2 /8s|3408/8s||74%|2418|1 tick / s
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42931]Cone of Cold[/url]|1.5/3.5/2|709-776||29%|947|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42950]Dragon's Breath[/url]|1.5/3.5/2*0.90|1101-1279||31%|1013|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42945]Blast Wave[/url]|1.5/3.5/2*0.90|1047-1233||28%|915 / glyphed: 777|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42921]Arcane Explosion[/url]|1.5/3.5/2|538-582||22%|718|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42917]Frost Nova[/url]|1.5/3.5/2*0.90|368-419||8%|261|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42842]Frostbolt[/url]|3/3.5*0.95|803-866||13%|424|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42914]Ice Lance[/url]|1.5/3.5/3|223-258||7%|228|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42897]Arcane Blast[/url]|2.5/3.5|1185-1377||8%|261|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=42846]Arcane Missiles[/url]|5/3.5|~362||31%|1013|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=44781]Arcane Barrage[/url]|2.5/3.5|936-1144||18%|588|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=55342]Mirror Image[/url]|-|-||10%|326|30s
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=55342]Mirror Image[/url] - frostbolt|0.10|163-169 [color=purple]*[/color]|150% crits, ~22-25 per cast|-|-|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=55342]Mirror Image[/url] - fireblast|0.05|88-98 [color=purple]*[/color]|150% crits, ~10-14 per cast|-|-|
[url=http://www.wowhead.com/?spell=31687]Water Elemental[/url] - frostbolt|2.5/3.5*0.4|601-673|150% crits, sta/int = 0.3, 5% base crit|16%|522|45-60s
[/table]
note: there is a discrepancy between the in-game-tooltip values and the ones reported by sites parsing the data files. The values above are taken from in-game-tooltips (except for arcane missiles).
[color=purple]*[/color] Based on a limited number of casts (~100 per).
[quote][b]base_mana_cost[/b] = [i]rounddown( class_base_mana[player_level] * spell_mana_cost )[/i]
[b]final_mana_cost[/b] = [i]rounddown( base_mana_cost [* elemental_precision] [* arcane_focus] [* arcane_power] )[/i]

[color=blue]exception case[/color]: [b]ab_mana_cost[/b] = [i]rounddown( round(base_mana_cost [* arcane_focus] [* elemental_precision]) * (1 + ab_stacks * 2 [+ arcane_power] [+ 2pct5]) )[/i]
[color=grey][size=1](Arcane_blast is different than the rest because the first part of the mana cost can be rounded up, whereas every other spell can only be rounded down. So even though it seems like the formulas are the same, they need to be treated separately.)[/size][/color]

[color=purple]ex: arcane barrage -- 3/3 elemental precision + 3/3 arcane focus + arcane power(20%)[/color]
base_mana_cost = rounddown( 3268 * 0.18 ) = 588
final_mana_cost = rounddown( 588 * 0.97 * 0.97 * 1.2 ) = 663

[color=purple]ex: arcane blast (3 stacks already up)  -- 3/3 arcane focus + 3/3 elemental precision + arcane power(20%) + 2pct5[/color]
base_mana_cost = rounddown( 3268 * 0.08 ) = 261
ab_mana_cost = rounddown( round(261 * 0.97 * 0.97) * (1 + 3 * 2 + 0.20 + 0.05) ) = 1783[/quote]


Stats equivalence

If you're just doing the equivalence for Arcane Blast (and not a mixed rotation [...]), the calculations are extremely straightforward.

1\mbox{ spell power} \equiv 4590.598679 \frac{1/b+c}{m/r+d} \mbox{ crit rating} \equiv 3278.998947 \frac{1+z}{m/r+d} \mbox{ haste rating} \equiv 2623.199272 \frac{h}{m/r+d} \mbox{ hit rating}

m is the average base damage (ex: arcane blast: (1185+1377)/2 = 1281)
r is the spell power coefficient (see table above for spell coefficients)
d is your spell power.
b is the critical strike bonus. (see table above for crit multiplier)
c is your crit chance.
z is the bonus to your casting speed from gear-based haste.
h is your hit chance.
[slightly edited]



More numbers
[table]Level|Crit / Int|Int / 1% crit
70|0.0125|80
71|0.0116|86.2068944
72|0.0108|92.59259244
73|0.0101|99.00990313
74|0.0093|107.526879
75|0.0087|114.9425283
76|0.0081|123.4567927
77|0.0075|133.333327
78|0.007|142.857139
79|0.0065|153.8461534
80|0.006|166.6666709[/table]
crit_rate_from_int = 0.9075 + final_int / 166.6666709
note: 0.9075 applies only to lvl 80 ? currently unknown

[table]|Level 70|Level 80
BASE_REGEN|0.009327|0.005575[/table]
[table]Level|BASE_REGEN|Level|BASE_REGEN|Level|BASE_REGEN|Level|BASE_REGEN
1|0.034965001| 21|0.019733001|41|0.013724|61|0.010701
2|0.034191001| 22|0.019156| 42|0.013522|62|0.010523
3|0.033465002| 23|0.018819001|43|0.013363|63|0.010291
4|0.032527| 24|0.018316999|44|0.013176|64|0.01012
5|0.031661| 25|0.017936001|45|0.012996|65|0.009969
6|0.031076999| 26|0.017577| 46|0.012854|66|0.009808
7|0.030523| 27|0.017201001|47|0.012687|67|0.009652
8|0.029995| 28|0.016919| 48|0.01254| 68|0.009553
9|0.029307| 29|0.016581999|49|0.012384|69|0.009446
10|0.028662| 30|0.016233999|50|0.012233|70|0.009327
11|0.027585| 31|0.015995| 51|0.012114|71|0.008859
12|0.026215| 32|0.015707999|52|0.011973|72|0.008415
13|0.025381001| 33|0.015464| 53|0.01186| 73|0.007993
14|0.024301| 34|0.015204| 54|0.011715|74|0.007592
15|0.023345999| 35|0.014957| 55|0.011576|75|0.007211
16|0.022748999| 36|0.014745| 56|0.011473|76|0.006849
17|0.021958999| 37|0.014496| 57|0.011342|77|0.006506
18|0.021387| 38|0.014302| 58|0.011245|78|0.006179
19|0.020791| 39|0.014095| 59|0.011111|79|0.005869
20|0.020121001| 40|0.013896| 60|0.011| 80|0.005575[/table]
ManaRegen(SPI, INT, LEVEL) = roundup( (0.001+SPI*BASE_REGEN[LEVEL]*(INT^0.5) *0.60 )*5 )
* applies only to 3.10


Professions / Racials
[table]Profession|Buff|Non-profession buff|Gain
Jewelcrafting|3x|3x or (2x+)|between [+39 dmg] and [+69 dmg, -8 crit, -24 sta]
Blacksmithing|Socket Gloves+Socket Bracer||+38 dmg
Enchanting|2xEnchant Ring - Greater Spellpower||+38 dmg
Leatherworking|Fur Lining - Spell Power|Enchant Bracers - Superior Spellpower|+37 dmg
Alchemy|Mixology||+37 dmg
Inscription|Master's Inscription of the Storm||+37 dmg
Engineering|Hyperspeed Acceleration|Enchant Gloves - Exceptional Spellpower|340 haste / 10s (1min CD), -28 dmg
Tailoring|Lightweave Embroidery|Enchant Cloak - Greater Speed|
Skinning|Master of Anatomy||+32 crit
Mining|Toughness||+50 sta
[/table]
[table]Race|Buff
Undead|none
Troll|Berserking + Beast Slaying (...)
Blood Elf|Arcane Torrent
Human|The Human Spirit
Gnome|Expansive Mind
Draenai|Heroic Presence
[/table]


EDITS
1- AB mana cost tables
2- POM
3- Added Professions / Racials
4- Added threat management
5- Added AB mana cost formula


Points of contention
1- Which talents are the best to cut when going from 57 to 51 pt in arcane?
2- Is is worth taking the last 2 points in Arcane Stability (conc. aura being a possibility)?
3- If yes, then what talent to sacrifice?
1- <many many many things here>


(as a temporary thing, if you want to have a rough idea of the calculations of arcane spells, check the ffb thread for the spreadsheet. for some mundane reason I can't re-link on this thread)

To do
type something about arcane debuff being cleanseable
finish spreadsheet according to 'to do' list on ffb thread.
add dpm-affecting buff/debuffs
attach spreadsheet
<Eej> YOU"RE GONNA PULL
<Eej> IF YOU SQUEEZE OFF ANOTHER ARCANE BLAST
<Spectear> You've obviously never played with Manly.
<Spectear> That's hardly a reason to stop DPS.
Very Manly Staff

#2 Averiel

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 04:22 PM

1st! awesome post in progress =D

A couple questions to ask for later:

I noticed in your 57/3/11 spec that you linked, you have 2/2 Magic Absorption. I haven't had the chance to try the spec out in a raid situation, are there any mana problems that appear that 2/3 Student of the Mind (8% of like no spirit that I have) help out a bit?

Also, skipping pushback resistance won't have a huge impact on DPS?

#3 Silabiss

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 04:25 PM

Awesome, thanks Manly. I was really hoping someone would get one of these up, to divert some of the "wow how do I play arcane spec" questions that are about to start flooding (or already are) these forums.

#4 Etherealz

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 04:54 PM

I made a small spreadsheet yesterday before realms came up just to try and get an idea of optimal cycles. It is by no means a complete spreadsheet but it demonstrates some mana consumption and dps of various cycle options.

Main purpose was to determine if shattering missiles was worth it without Mbar procs. Unless I did something wrong it would appear it's not worth it without the proc.

Arccycle.xls - FileFront.com

Maybe somebody will find it useful for the time being.

Couple notes - spelldamage / int (in row 2) are unbuffed / before arcane cheater talents.
- I assumed the 6% arc haste was calculated like veins / lust but I could be wrong here.

Edit: Just looking it over I also didn't add FM. So if you are 'circle jerking' FM you can add 6% crit there.

Edit: Fixed focus magic and a couple other oversights which weren't actually effecting the results but looked messy.

#5 Kel S'jet

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 05:01 PM

That 'pure single target DPS build', is pretty wrong unfortunately

EDIT: To explain this point a bit better. My quandary is with your allocation of points to Magic absorption and Magic attunement instead of Student of the mind.

Why? Simple.

Even if it is a minor increase in mana, it is still more of an increase in mana over Magic attunement and absorption. Increased range, while nice, is not neccissary at all. Arcanists from the BC age made by very well with just 30 yards. And as far as the increased magic resistance, while nice, will not really make much of a difference except for in perhaps 1 fight out of the 20+ in the game right now.

One of the key tenants of any arcane spec is more mana = more damage, since the one of the single most powerful aspects of the Arcane spec is it's ability to convert mana into damage at will.

To this effect, leaving every other point as it is, place 3/3 SotM, leaving you with 1 point for 'flavor'. Personally, I place the last talent in Slow since it is such a classic Arcane ability. Though at that point, it really is up to you.

#6 Sinless

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 05:09 PM

With the current arcane shatter bug in place, according to Rawr, playing arcane is actually much simpler than it looks.

1) Your regular rotation, unless severely limited by mana, should ALWAYS be ABx3-AM-Abar, REGARDLESS of missile barrage proc. Remember to use Abar before the 5th tick of AM.

2) Your stacked cooldown rotation, unless severely limited by mana, is spam AB, use AM-Abar ONLY when missile barrage procs. Remember to use Abar before the 5th tick of AM.

3) You should try to stack your cooldowns with heroism but not at the expense of missing the 2nd use of any cooldown. You should always stack IV and AP together.


This is it. 3 simple steps cover everything there is to play arcane. This will remain to be the case until Blizzard fixes the arcane shatter bug or they acknowledge it but change arcane in a different way. Please note you are very rarely "severely limited by mana" due to current content and fights being extremely short.

#7 mnmkana

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 05:19 PM

I kinda disagree with manly on 57/3/11 being the single target dps spec as well.

I've tested the new arcane spec with 51/2/18 for 3/3 in frost channeling but i'm still using my mana very fast.

I had to use my gem whenever its up and evocate for all my fights, even a mana potion on thaddius.

57/3/11 may be the highest arcane dps spec but i doubt its possible to sustain it for long.

That being said, arcane's DPS is great. I topped the charts for all the boss fights maintaining dps constantly around 5k (give or take 100). unfortunately i don't have the WWS to show it.

#8 manapaws

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 05:26 PM

Nice work as always, Manly. What I'd perhaps like to see in a thread like this is more talk on mana management, especially as arcane. Also, do most consider the 60% extra damage on Abar after AM a bug/exploit or will it likely stay as is?

According to rawr, with my current gear (2pc 7.5 2pc 7, other random [mostly bad] stuff) my max theoretical raid dps as 53/18 frostfire is 3940 compared to 4500 as 57/3/11. Thing I'm not really sure about though is whether this is assuming max burn cycle or limited mana cycle? Is it possible to specify a certain duration of each in rawr? I'll try it next raid and see, I guess.

#9 Pasture

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 05:28 PM

The 57/3/11 build is the exact build that I'm using so I'd have to agree with it.

I just ran my first 25-man today. Previously I did around 3k dps max. Now I'm sustaining 4k for a boss fight. so I'm seeing a 25% increase on what I was doing pre-patch. On top of this mana in a proper raid environment didn't seem to be too troublesome. I used my evocate but wound up feeling like I didn't really need to use it at all. I was running with glyphed mage armour however.

#10 mnmkana

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 05:34 PM

Pasture u might wanna try running with glyphed molten armor instead because giving up 5% crit is not worth it in my opinion if u can sustain throughout the whole fight without resorting to wanding

#11 Light4

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 05:35 PM

Also, skipping pushback resistance won't have a huge impact on DPS?



Personally, I would skill pushback protection over range or absorption, I even considered only 1 point in subtlety, but with my experience from pre-3.0.8 this would definitely mean invisibility after popping all CDs (including mirror image) right after the pull.
Loosing 1s off a 2s hasted MBAM sound like bad dpm to me

#12 manly

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 05:40 PM

I kinda disagree with manly on 57/3/11 being the single target dps spec as well.

I've tested the new arcane spec with 51/2/18 for 3/3 in frost channeling but i'm still using my mana very fast.

I had to use my gem whenever its up and evocate for all my fights, even a mana potion on thaddius.

57/3/11 may be the highest arcane dps spec but i doubt its possible to sustain it for long.

That being said, arcane's DPS is great. I topped the charts for all the boss fights maintaining dps constantly around 5k (give or take 100). unfortunately i don't have the WWS to show it.

You might not realize it, but its very long to type all of that. I typed what I could on the time I have, its obviously not finished or the only possible build.
<Eej> YOU"RE GONNA PULL
<Eej> IF YOU SQUEEZE OFF ANOTHER ARCANE BLAST
<Spectear> You've obviously never played with Manly.
<Spectear> That's hardly a reason to stop DPS.
Very Manly Staff

#13 Averiel

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 05:46 PM

What spell to use PoM on?

Frostbolt may not crit for 200% (calculating based on talents) depending on your spec.
AB would add another debuff for you if you don't have 3, and you save a "little" time on stacking them.
Fireball sounds worthless without ignite.

What do you PoM? I am leaning towards AB when not at 3 stacks.

#14 Kel S'jet

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 05:51 PM

What spell to use PoM on?

Frostbolt may not crit for 200% (calculating based on talents) depending on your spec.
AB would add another debuff for you if you don't have 3, and you save a "little" time on stacking them.
Fireball sounds worthless without ignite.

What do you PoM? I am leaning towards AB when not at 3 stacks.


POM AB to start the stack seems to be the best bet.

Start the fight with a POM AB and attempt to use it as much as possible to get the first stack up. With a 2 min cooldown, you are looking at easily using it multiple times in a fight

#15 Kel S'jet

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 06:43 PM

In an effort to get some useful information out there, here are some basic playstyle ideas concerning the proper use of Evocation.

Facts
1. Using the accepted Arcane spec, you will have access to an evocate every 2 mins, as well as IV (2:24 cooldown). Engineers will also have access to a 1 min CD haste trinket.

Ideas
Currently there are 2 schools of thought concerning the proper use of evocation with the new Arcane spec.

1. Conventional Use: Use evocation only when needed
Premise:
Like the evocation of old, this school of thought places emphasis on using evocation only when needed, preferably at a point in time where you can minimize or negate the DPS loss from not casting, e.g boss transition or when fully Bloodlusted and hasted etc. At the core of this idea is the concept of minimizing (or completely eliminating) time not spent DPSing.
Execution:
The execution of this idea is very straight forward. It is no different then what mages are accustomed to already. Use Evoc at the end of a lust or when the boss is transitioning etc

2. Aggressive Use: Attempt to use evocation nearly every 2 mins when the CD is up.
Premise:
This school of thought is centered around the idea that the arcane mage's DPS cycles are part of a super-cycle that lasts approximately 2mins 10 seconds (barring gear haste or haste effects). With this, the Arcane mage will attempt to use very aggressive DPS rotations in an effort to ensure all his mana is spent every 2 mins, after which, he will spend the next 10 seconds 'regenerating' his mana.
Execution:
For this idea to work, the mage has to minimize the 'regen' time as much as possible. Plausible suggestions include saving 'haste' cooldowns (IV and Gloves) and/or syncing the regen time with things such as bloodlust. In order to burn all your mana, you would also have to use Arcane power as much as possible, hence the Arcane power glyph and Molten armor glyph is of better use. As a secondary point, proper use of IV for the "Aggressive Use" is also required. For fights with less raid wide damage, you would want to use your IV before you evocate and start the evocation on the last tick of IV in order to gain the speed access. For encounters with more raid damage, you would have to use the last 10 seconds of IV to evocate, so as to sheild your evocate from push back and damage based interruption.

Pros and Cons:

1. Conventional Pros:
Tried and tested. People are very familiar with the conventional use of evocation.
You still have the flexibility to sync up your evocation with encounter specific downtime.

Conventional Cons:
There is a theoretical loss of burst damage as well as a potential not to use your mana -> damage conversion maximally.

2. Aggressive Pros:
Potential to do a lot more damage since you are going to be using your evocation much much more often, and, since you have access to a lot more mana, you can burn it for much more overall damage.
Aggressive Cons:
Very unstable, since your lifeline is based around the concept that you must under all circumstances not have anything go wrong in your regen phase. If something prevents your regen phase executing properly (e.g you are forced to move and interrupt evocation or you are silenced or something else that makes your evocation not complete) you will suffer a very large DPS loss from which it will be much harder to recover (though not impossible).


Gear Requirements

1. Conventional Evocation use does not have any stringent gear requirements other than the basic requirements applied to all Arcane mages.

2. The only real gear requirement for aggressive Evocation use requires that your gear can support maximally burning all your mana at 2 min intervals, as well as have enough regen to make it to your next regen cycle without having to resort to 'mana conservation' spell rotations (e.g just using AB ABr).

edit: forgot tips and conclusions

Tips and Tricks
1. Conventional:
- No real playstyle and/or casting change is necessary with the conventional use of Evocation. DPS rotations are still based off of maximizing DPS and DPM based on the total duration of the fight and preventing the use of Evocation if possible (since in this school of thought, evocation is more of an "oh sh!t" button rather than an active part of the playstyle). Most commonly discussed rotations will work here.
- It is still important to look for 'encounter specific' opportunities with this playstyle. E.g you should use your knowledge of the fight to know when there is potential downtime and hence you can aim to burn your mana so as to sync up with the point where the downtime occurs, hence having 'DPS loss free' regeneration.

2. Aggressive:
- It is advisable to 'frontload' a lot of damage with this playstyle. Since you are effectively looking to go oom at the 2 min mark, you are better off frontloading a lot of damage and being forced to use a mana preserve rotation in order to wait out the the remaining time till your cooldowns come up rather than reaching the 2 min mark and having a lot of mana to spare. This idea lives and dies by maximizing the use of the theoretical mana available to the mage. Having lots of mana left and your evocation, AP, IV, POM, trinkets being off CD is a bad place to be.
- It is imperative to sync yourself with external effects such as bloodlust using the aggressive playstyle. Ideally, you would want to have enough mana left to make use of bloodlust and still have at least 1 tick of bloodlust left on you to use for evocation. Hence it is imperative that at least 1 of your evocation 'regen' phases is executed right at the end of a bloodlust + IV + gloves combo. This will bring evocation to around a 3-4 second channel.

Conclusions:
It is apparent that the power of Arcane lies in short fights and burst DPS. I believe the school of thought behind the "Aggressive use of evocation" are attempting to leverage this fact by shifting the way the Arcanist fights to 2 min intervals. Hence, the Arcanist is essentially DPSing through encounters in 'phases of burst'. With the new cooldowns, this is now possible since many of the cooldowns sync up. The only real offender to this is IV. Though there is still some debate as to whether or not a 2 min IV would be ideal anyway since it is a duration based effect. Ideally, IV would be at a sub-2 min CD (something akin to 1min 50 seconds).
In contrast, the school of thought behind the more conventional use of evocation is of the belief that the use of cooldowns for regeneration as well as the more consistent use of evocation is not maximizing DPS uptime.

It is important to note, that for fights that are short enough (eg some of the 2min something parses that we are seeing of patchwerk) both schools of thought converge to the same playstyle. I.e on short enough fights, there is no difference.

#16 Maledict

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 06:48 PM

Would be great if you had some maths to explain why wasting time evocating (and cooldown usage) is useful. You appear to be just trying to make up terms for something you don't have the numbers for, and passing it off as fact?

#17 Kel S'jet

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 07:05 PM

Would be great if you had some maths to explain why wasting time evocating (and cooldown usage) is useful. You appear to be just trying to make up terms for something you don't have the numbers for, and passing it off as fact?


There was some pretty intense conversation (with numbers) about this very topic in the other thread "Upcoming mage changes". When I get some time I can port them over here too.
The discussion in that thread ended with no conclusive winner, which is the reason that I specifically stated at the beginning of the post 'the two ideas', and not 'this one idea is the only use of evocation'. After all, I think my post is pretty impartial to either, so I do not understand what I am 'trying to pass off as fact". If you are referring to whether or not the discussion existed in the first place, then yes, that is a fact. I am not making that up.

But I do understand your deeper point quite clearly.

edit: formatting

#18 DaDeigo

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 07:28 PM

I was able to pull 7.1 dps on patch ( got a innervate ) and 8.4 on thaddius no innervate and i forgot to cast mana gems before the fight (GG) for thaddius. We also had to stop dps on feugen for the stallag side to catch up. I was crushed by a warrior who did 10k dps who cried all night about how they were nurfed until that fight. I was looking forward all night to loatheb but only pulled 6.9 there to my suprise. I only got a innervate on patch and my gear is by no means the best but its pretty good.

Few things i am unsure about is the following:

1. Is it really that beneficial to be using mage armour glyphed full time over molten glyphed and swaping when needing to.

2. Can i avoid mana issues with glyphing mana gem plus my set bonus from teir gear. Is it worth it even?

3. I found timing all evocates on the last ticks of IV and bloodlust to be extremly important.

4. I went oom a few times in the start but without managing my mana properly but in time i found it to be a non issue i had just become a lazy spammer for FFB. Do you guys have any key insight?

5. I never had a fight where my dps was sub 5500, even when i was getting use to the spec and going oom.

6. How are people dealing with AM mb proc's. I found even with a good rig and a good video card that it was a pain to time and i did miss the timing occasionally, and yes i do use quartz. Sometimes i blew my wad too early and sometimes i was a second too late.

#19 DaDeigo

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 07:35 PM

With the current arcane shatter bug in place, according to Rawr, playing arcane is actually much simpler than it looks.

1) Your regular rotation, unless severely limited by mana, should ALWAYS be ABx3-AM-Abar, REGARDLESS of missile barrage proc. Remember to use Abar before the 5th tick of AM.

2) Your stacked cooldown rotation, unless severely limited by mana, is spam AB, use AM-Abar ONLY when missile barrage procs. Remember to use Abar before the 5th tick of AM.

3) You should try to stack your cooldowns with heroism but not at the expense of missing the 2nd use of any cooldown. You should always stack IV and AP together.


This is it. 3 simple steps cover everything there is to play arcane. This will remain to be the case until Blizzard fixes the arcane shatter bug or they acknowledge it but change arcane in a different way. Please note you are very rarely "severely limited by mana" due to current content and fights being extremely short.


For point 2 do you feel avoiding am having the buff for four missle subpar dps to more ab/abr's?

#20 Swindley

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 07:43 PM

Well, we're doing some various fights atm. I'm stuck fire/arc to provice scorch, and the lesser geared mages which have allways been lower than me on DPS are now devasting the meters, far above what I can produce with my current spec. If I wasnt stuck to provide the debuff I'd respec too.

But seriously, this can't be intended from arcane. They have superior survivability, threat management, mobile DPS and burst DPS. And the worst part, I'm stuck at way lower DPS because scorch needs to be up.

They need to bring arcane inline with the other specs. If they could also add the 10% crit to arcane, that would be perfect and it would truly be a choice, based on preferance, not force.




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