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Cataclysm Mage Changes


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#561 Leguaran

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Posted 05 September 2010 - 04:04 PM

Those numbers fit the 199.5% crit multiplier pretty well, thank you! This also means that the 3% crit meta gem will likely lose some of its value since the bonus is likely no longer multiplied with the larger multiplier of on the crit bonus. Still the best meta out there among Shadowspirit Diamond - Item - World of Warcraft from what I see.
This also menas that the major perk of Frostfire specs is gone as well - any Fire spell now has 200% crits plus Ignite.

Improved Freeze looks pretty good. Delay Freeze by 5s and you can use Deep Freeze every cooldown. FoF should proc reliably often that it might be better to use use Freeze every 25s regardless of DF cooldown, but it's good to have a guaranteed backup.
Worst case analysis: Freeze gives you two Ice Lances. Taking some of the older numbers, Ice Lance spam was a 50-100% DPS increase under FoF. Assume 20% haste. The Freeze is a 50%+ DPS increase for 2.5s every 25s. 5%+ average DPS increase for 2 points, better than other random fillers. That's just a first rough estimate. Targeting Freeze shouldn't be too bad if you can use it while casting a spell yourself (not certain on this one).

[Edit]: Freeze is 25% base mana, Waterbolt is 1% base mana right now. Thus Freeze mana might be or become an issue.

I had wanted to try a simulation of Scorch spam vs. Fireball spam for Hot Streak, but the whole thing is too much of a mess right now with DoT crits triggering it. Depending on how numbers turn out, even single target Flamestrike might have to be considered.

[Edit]: These new mechanics mean that Fire is now 279.3% crit baseline, 285.6% crit with CS* Meta. Plus Hot Streak. And Frost gets tripled crit chance about 15%-20% of the time, but only until 33% crit. I'm glad it's not me who has to balance that mess. :monocle:



Does anyone have any new info regarding this? Or old one that I might be missing?
I am currently levelling a worgen mage on the beta and I am definitely not getting 199.5% dmg on crits. Was this scrapped? Does it only kick in at a certain level?

#562 Lhivera

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Posted 05 September 2010 - 04:57 PM

According to testing by Lhivera and Hidden, scaling is as follows:

  • Pet gains 40% of its master's Spell Power, 50% of Stamina/Intellect, 100% of Hit/Crit/Haste. 0% Armour scaling in Cataclysm beta.
  • Pet gains no measurable benefit from its master's Mastery. Probably because Frostburn is a debuff that affects only the its original caster. Technically, the pet might get the Mastery, but since it has no talent tree, there is nothing in the pet's spell/ability book that benefits from the inherited Mastery. Most likely work in progress.
  • Waterbolt has 83.33% = 5/6 as scaling coefficient. Yes, it's the same as in WotLK. No, it still does not make sense.

Not answered in test reports: How much HP/Mana do pets get per point of stamina/intellect? In WotLK, it was 7.5 HP, 4.95 Mana per point.


Frostburn is no longer a debuff. We're expecting the pet to gain some kind of simple damage multiplier from Mastery, just to make sure it actually scales with all our stats. There was some discussion with GC about this. I can't find the post at the moment, but basically he said pets should scale with every stat, we started speculating on how they would scale from various masteries that didn't seem entirely suitable to pet scaling, he came back and said something like, "it doesn't have to scale using the Mastery's effect, we can simply increase its damage based on your Mastery rating." So either still work in progress, or they've changed your mind (which would probably be fine -- Mastery doesn't affect 100% of the damage of many specs, so it could just be tuned a bit higher rather than working on the pet).

I don't know if Waterbolt is getting 5/6 of the Water Elemental's spell power, or 1/3 of the Mage's spell power. Both values work to produce the damage results I see (because, of course, 1 / 3 / 0.4 = 5 / 6). Since it is, to my knowledge, impossible to buff the Water Elemental's spell power directly now, it really doesn't matter which is technically correct.

I posted later on the mana/health scaling. The Water Elemental does not gain any Stamina or Intellect at all from buffs or inheritance. Instead, it simply gains 0.5 health for every point of health the Mage gains, and 0.5 mana for every point of mana the Mage gains. Stamina and Intellect appear to be useful only for figuring out the pet's base health and mana values without inheritance.


The current theorycrafting suggests, I believe, that you hold off using Freeze until:

(1) Deep Freeze cooldown is up.
(2) Finger of Frost has not proc'ed on its own--if it has, clear it with IL.

So will always be replacing a frostbolt with a Deep Freeze and a Ice Lance (or if you are lucky, a DF and a Brain Freeze FFB). This is always such a large difference in damage that it makes the use of Freeze non-optional. I think the only remaining question is whether the permanent water elemental has enough mana and mana regen to keep casting Freeze for the duration of a long boss fight--while spamming Waterbolt, of course.


It was suggested to me, and I think this is correct, that instead of first clearing charges with Ice Lance, then using Freeze and Deep Freeze, you go ahead and use Deep Freeze first, then clear any remaining charges, then Freeze and Ice Lance x 2. Freeze's cooldown is a few seconds shorter than Deep Freeze's, so you have time to do that while still keeping the two cooldowns synced up, and it gets your Deep Freezes out just a bit quicker. Probably difficult to detect any difference, though.

I believe casting Freeze will not be a problem. So far it looks like my Water Elemental could cast about twenty Freezes on a single Mana bar without any regen. Even if regen effects in a raid only compensated for Water Bolt costs, that should be more than enough.
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#563 Logix

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Posted 06 September 2010 - 09:13 PM

So I wanted to change gears for a bit and reignite discussion on our two new mage spells, Flame Orb and Curtain of Frost.

I tried searching for discussion about these two but all I found was a few passing comments in the beta thread back when the spells were still very buggy.
I just wanted to ask, has there been any change to these spells as of late or a change in the feedback for these spells? The general impression I got from those older posts was that both spells are rather underwhelming. Perhaps there is some new content or encounter that lets these spells shine in a light that we are unaware of from the outside?

I only ask since there has been very little discussion about these spells, both here and on other forums.

That being said, from the feedback that was received a while back, it seems that Flame Orb will serve as a good DPS cooldown for the fire and frost specs. The frostfire orb version will also serve as a good way to augment a Frost mage's battlefield control options (due to the snare. Is this still the case?).

It was hard to gauge what people were thinking concerning Curtain of Frost. From my understanding, the core issue with the spell was that it really doesn't have much of an effect (it snares and damages once, it's size is too small, cooldown is too long etc).

One thing that is apparent looking at other classes, is that there definitely seems to be a conscious effort on blizzard's part to give some classes more ways to control the battlefield (probably due to the emphasis of rated battlegrounds in Cataclysm). The Balance druid's Wild Mushroom + Solar beam synergy is a good example of this. So is the hunters ability to launch traps.

How are the beta mages feeling about these two spells, both in general and in how/if they bolster the mage in the role of "battlefield controller"?

Furthermore, I was wondering if anyone has given any feedback to Blizzard concerning Time Warp. As we all know, the runspeed part of the spell was removed (at least to my knowledge). Has there been any suggestion that perhaps mages can get this spell at the same level that Shaman's get Bloodlust? Hence allowing the level 85 mage spell to be something a little more interesting or new?

What are your thoughts about this? I think it is a reasonable suggestion to make (as well as one with lots of precedence).

#564 arch

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Posted 06 September 2010 - 10:41 PM

This is going to sound pessimistic but hear me out.

To me it seems that blizzard has been low on ideas for mage spells for quite some time now. They threw us frostfirebolt which was outdated the second it was created (hello fire immune mobs being immune to ignite/scorch debuff etc) and still is a liability that we're stuck with. Mirror image was pretty cool when it constantly swapped your location with the images but it didn't work out so now it's kinda treading on the role of invisibility. Yes I said kinda.

Flame orb is another aoe for an already aoe centric tree, and I fear it will become something (for PvP at least) people just ignore while they continue to kick your or your teammates ass. Unless it does great damage on explosion, in which case it will be useful for the occasional burst. For PvE it seems like a fire and forget spell with a skill component to it.

Kinda neat but it doesn't really have me climbing the walls for cataclysm.

Curtain of frost seems quite nice for non-frost specs and decent for frost, but it could be even better if it had a clear role. It's still a bit early though but I'm not convinced. My gut feeling tells me it might be one of those spells that you hardly use.

Time warp is heroism/bloodlust.... nice to have but not new.

I'm normally not a doomsday prophet kind of guy but I keep getting the feeling that there isn't insanely much thought or brainstorming behind the abilities given to classes sometimes. It feels like they decide something is cool and it doesn't necessarily have to fill any gap (which I completely understand, classes can't be omnipotentl) or have a clear role.

It makes the process (and sometimes the entire class for an entire expansion) a tad too random for my taste.

I want spells that they have given alot of thought to, that does something useful instead of just being cool without being overly useful. They tend to bandaid those abilities beyond reason only to push them down our throat. Just start in th other end. Think of a weakness you want to adress, a concept you want to solidify.. or something, and THEN you go ahead and think of the cool stuff.

Mirror image and FFB are two excellent examples of spells that obviously were created first and foremost for the cool factor only to be retrofit into some not so well thought out role.

With this being said, stuff can and will change before the end of beta, I remain hopeful. But it is not unheard of to be stuck with semi-useful spells for entire expansions while other classes get new very useful toys. Or the other way around, maybe we draw the winning ticket this time. But it doesn't have to be that way and it is a cross class issue.

You could also say that the mage is a really solid class if they're having such trouble coming up with spells. Personally, I'm more looking forward to adressing the current talent trees and abilities rather than getting new ones. They are just a bonus.

But I still dislike the notion of leaving CoF and flame orb in the spellbook (exaggarations furthers understanding).
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#565 Guest_aikiwoce_*

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 03:08 AM

To me it seems that blizzard has been low on ideas for mage spells for quite some time now.

I've noticed this as well. There are a lot of the interesting lore-based and NPC abilities that mages could get. But most aren't fit for players or are unique abilities for other classes. Arcane is the poster child for this.

Flame orb is another aoe for an already aoe centric tree, and I fear it will become something (for PvP at least) people just ignore while they continue to kick your or your teammates ass.

I was kinda hoping it would be upgraded with a stacking debuff, doomfire-like follow ability, or fire multiple orbs. It can be fine as is, if Arcane gets it's own flavor rolled into a talent somewhere.

Curtain of frost seems quite nice for non-frost specs and decent for frost, but it could be even better if it had a clear role.

When they described it as a 'tripwire,' I though there was going to be some kind of trap-like mechanic associated with it. Anything from a knock-down, short term reduced hit-chance debuff, or increased damage debuff for the first mob/player to touch it. That way it gains some utility for PvE, and isn't too overpowered for PvP.

Time warp is heroism/bloodlust.... nice to have but not new.

Definitely should not be our lvl85 ability. Especially with the removal of it's run-speed bonus. But, I don't know what to replace it with.

Edit: I was watching a video about Camouflage , and I'll admit was a little jealous. It's pretty powerful, and Invisibility looks kinda lame in comparison. You are immune to aoe, can cast non-damage abilities, see everything else, and while not completely invisible are hard to see. Invisibility is only really better in that it can be cast in combat. I know this is a grass-is-greener situation, but damn if camo isn't sexy. Well, if nothing else, I think maybe it's time to reevaluate the 'brown paper bag' effect of Invisibility.

#566 Lhivera

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 11:45 AM

It was hard to gauge what people were thinking concerning Curtain of Frost. From my understanding, the core issue with the spell was that it really doesn't have much of an effect (it snares and damages once, it's size is too small, cooldown is too long etc).


Beta opinions on Curtain of Frost are pretty negative. I may be the spell's only defender, and even I can only muster up defense for the basic concept; the implementation just keeps falling short with every iteration. I think the problem is that if it's made powerful enough to perform its intended role of field control effectively, it becomes overpowered unless it has a hefty cooldown -- but if it has a hefty cooldown, it's fairly useless in PvE, because we need to be able to manage adds without it.

I did find myself making use of it fairly frequently while leveling in Deepholme, simply because sometimes the mobs were tough enough and I had a small enough safe area to move around in that it was useful for some damage that wouldn't eat a GCD. There are some things they could tweak to make it better, but I don't know that there's any way they can make it into a spell Mages feel excited about without making it unreasonably powerful. We have a fair amount of control already, so it's difficult to impress us with a control spell.
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#567 Lemina

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 02:04 PM

Edit: I was watching a video about Camouflage , and I'll admit was a little jealous. It's pretty powerful, and Invisibility looks kinda lame in comparison. You are immune to aoe, can cast non-damage abilities, see everything else, and while not completely invisible are hard to see. Invisibility is only really better in that it can be cast in combat. I know this is a grass-is-greener situation, but damn if camo isn't sexy. Well, if nothing else, I think maybe it's time to reevaluate the 'brown paper bag' effect of Invisibility.


There is no "brown paper bag" for invisibility in beta, if you're referring to not being able to see enemies - you can now. You can practically see everything while invisible now while others can't even see you, and with locks losing their detect invisibility, no one can see you.

#568 Elimbras

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 02:36 PM

Mages already have a pretty lot of spells in each tree. That's difficult to really add new spells.
Most specs that receive new spells are hybrid specs, which have less history of dps and more "unfilled" potential. At least in my mind. Rogues don't really get new fun spells, I don't think warlocks have either (except maybe demonology, but that's a fairly new tree for dps), and hunters have, yeah, the trap launcher which is a very very old concept they've played with and was constantly asked by the community, and camouflage, which was also asked often by the community (how many NPC hunters have you seen camoufled whilst leveling ? )

#569 Tyrian

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 02:42 PM

After seeking mod permission, and following the lead of other EJ class forums: Mage Cataclysm discussion will shift away from just dumping everything into this one generic "Cataclysm Mage Changes" thread. Instead, multiple spec specific threads - each filled with detailed, inspired and consolidated discussions regarding their respective spec - will become an exciting new resource for EJ mages:

http://elitistjerks....ysm_discussion/
http://elitistjerks....ysm_discussion/
http://elitistjerks....ysm_discussion/

There's been some excellent discussion and analysis of all three specs in this thread. Now we have the opportunity to discuss them exclusively, in detail, in each spec specific thread. Many recent posters here - who've documented and authored said discussion and concerns - are encouraged to consolidate their posts and re-inject them into the relevant spec specific thread where they can be explored in further detail.

Carebare has agreed that this thread is to be be locked/closed shortly, once all three spec-specific threads are up and running.

#570 Pasture

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 09:05 PM

Flame orb is another aoe for an already aoe centric tree, and I fear it will become something (for PvP at least) people just ignore while they continue to kick your or your teammates ass. Unless it does great damage on explosion, in which case it will be useful for the occasional burst. For PvE it seems like a fire and forget spell with a skill component to it.

From what I believe, Flame Orb is not actually an AoE spell at all. It was changed to only damage one mob at a time, so it's essentially a single target dot on a one minute cooldown that operates at full capacity for Fire and Frost, with Frost operating at reduced capacity due to the spell not benefiting from the Arcane +25% damage bonus.

Curtain of frost seems quite nice for non-frost specs and decent for frost, but it could be even better if it had a clear role. It's still a bit early though but I'm not convinced. My gut feeling tells me it might be one of those spells that you hardly use.

I'd be happy with this spell if it was considerably longer in width. It should be something you choose not to run through - ie you wait until it's down or pay the consequence. As it stands, it's all too easy just to run around given how small it is (thinking of PvP).

#571 Carebare

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Posted 07 September 2010 - 11:07 PM

Please use the spec specific threads for all further conversations. Sorry if in closing this I'm cutting off a conversation in the middle. :(

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