Posted 04 April 2006 - 03:15 PM
I'm generally quite happy as a Mage. In all honesty, all I really hope for in the talent review is that they shuffle some stuff around. Anything, really. I just want my character-building decisions to be fresh. Those Priests looked like they were having a lot of fun right after the new trees were announced. Everyone secretly hopes that one day they'll long and things that were mundane will suddenly be novel again, and class changes are a rare opportunity for that. Hopefully the Priest changes indicate that Blizz is getting a bit more comfortable with making meaningful changes, but the "mages are fine" tone they've always had has made me nervous that they won't do very much interesting.
My only complaint about Mages has nothing to do with power level, just with a lack of diversity in good builds. A lot of people try to use interesting builds--I've been trying hard to come up with a tri-spec build for raids--but ultimately you face the decision that if you stray from a few particular choices, you're choosing novelty over pure utility. It shouldn't have to be that way.
Evocation is great example of something that should be made a class skill (more so than IAE). No build without Evo is going to be more useful in raids than any build with Evo. It changes the whole dynamic of the class by removing mana as a limiting factor in a huge number of situations. Imagine if, say, Feign Death were a talent. IAE you can give up and still take your build seriously (though it's a stretch). If you go 40/11 Frost, your decked-out Blizzard is often making itself rather useful while the other mages are casting IAE. Give up Evo, however, and while everyone else is going through their second mana bar, you're sitting there wanding, talking about how you could be using both Fire and Frost spells effectively.
Tactical Mastery seems more like IAE. If you don't spec it, there are ways to patch over that utility in practical situations. It lets you do a few things you couldn't do before, but doensn't fundamentally affect the scope of the class.