Arcane Mage Review
I am currently playing an Arcane Mage with the simple build of 57/3/11
for PvE. We cleared ToC 10 last night and I wasn't happy with the DPS I put out. I believe I ended with around 4.3k for the night. The link to my armory is The World of Warcraft Armory. I have been reading about possibly trading some hit for haste and other things of that nature but would like to get an educated opinion. Please take a look at my specs and offer any advice you see fit, I can take constructive criticism as well so don't pull any punches! Thanks in advance,
Personal Character advice is located in the HALP! forum.
As an arcane mage your going for haste. You don't need as much crit since your crit multiplier is lower then other classes. Which is why if you run with other mages in raids you mostly won't get FM. You probally could get your hit cap lower. Since you have precison and arcane focus. I always have a boomkin, shadow priest and a dranei. Which should bring your hit cap to around 7%.
Originally Posted by Colwyn
Some suggestions, not an exhaustive list:
I'd aim for the T8 chest with badges.
Swap all hit gems with haste gems
20 hit has got to go. Spell power to gloves at least.
Swap out sundial of the exiled for Reg TOC Abyssal Rune.
Keep your crit gear pieces for frost.
I run an arcane mage usually and my gear is probably is a bit below yours. I can usually manage 4.5-5.5k DPs depending on the fight, buffs etc.
First off you have too much hit. It would be one thing if it was all from gear that you can't really shave off because at that point there is nothing you could do. But you have hit gems and enchants. Other than icewalker(due to lack of a better boot enchant) get rid of them if you are in Arcane most of the time. You HAVE to remember that you have precision (3% all schools of magic) and Arcane Focus (3% hit in arcane) and for the vast vast majority of your boss DPS you will only be using 2 spells Arcane Blast and Arcane Missiles. Your effective hit cap is 11% so gear accordingly. You should enchant/gem for spellpower and haste. Your haste is around 3%. try and get it into the 10%+ range and you'll start seeing better returns. Also don't worry so much about gemming for crit or mana over 5. I know you need a hybrid gem to get the meta, and I personally think a little extra stamina might be more useful for staying a live. But that is marginal. Gem Spell power and haste. On the meta I prefer the Chaotic Skyflare which gives 3% bonus to crit damage. That is huge. As your spellpower goes up, the crits get bigger, and so 3% dmg will get bigger. Are you having the kind of mana problems where 2% mana is important? And I'd look at getting +28 spell power on gloves and get a bigger enchant on your weapon.
Rotation: Ever since the patch where they dropped teh mana costs and penalty of arcane blast, I have not had serious mana problems (except maybe in Vezax so I just go Fireball as a precaution there). So I just apam AB until I get a Missile Barrage Barrage proc, use it, go back to AB spam. I use power auras to notify me of the proc so I tend to not miss them. I also macro in Arcane power and Icy veins into Arcane Blast so they are always on cooldown. I wouldn't recommend this if your raids usually have very coordinated "blow cooldowns now" tactics. Mine is kinda casual, and I'll forget so I macro.
There are better enchants.
Originally Posted by Smallwall
24 crit if engineer
tuskarr's is better for EVERYBODY
18 spirit is not bad, mana still = DPS for arcane mages
I keep forgetting about tuskarr's. He doesn't have engineering so that would be out. I think 18 spirit isn't bad, but isn't really that good either. Mages shouldn't gear for spirit. Yes I know it gets the armor crit pumped up, but you have to have a serious amount of spirit for it to pay off. So what about mana regen? Well with mana gems(1gcd) and 2 min evocate he should never be out of mana very long. I don't find myself evocating much since the change in arcane costs. So meh.
Of all the mage specs, arcane gains the most benefit from spi, especially if you spec 3/3 student of the mind. And yes while we can evocate, unless there are obvious periods of non-activity, evocate time = time you are not DPSing = lower raid DPS.
Originally Posted by Smallwall
Perhaps you could've been higher. I haven't looked at the armory or anything but I know most posters have stated changes to be made already. Have to remember on ToC 10 there are many times you will have to change targets to adds or have a brief few seconds of downtime. Anub'arak burrowing, Snobolds.
I don't think you should be horrendously unhappy with 4.5k, your gear is fairly poor. There are some serious problems you need to remedy though which will improve you.
1. Chaotic Skyflare Diamond meta gem
Replace your meta gem ASAP. The one you have is no good.
2. Talisman of Volatile Power
This trinket is terrible. Seriously, no kidding, it's bad. Get Abyssal Rune. There are no good trinkets in ToC10 so Abyssal Rune is about as good as you will have for now (for 50 emblems of triumph Talisman of Resurgence is only slightly better).
Keep Sundial of the Exiled until you bought all your tier9 pieces and then get Talisman of Resurgence to use with Abyssal Rune.
3. Drop Hit Rating
Assuming you are doing 10-mans and can't rely on a boomkin or shadow priest adding 3% hit you want 11% +hit (289 rating), or 10% (263 rating) if you have a draenei in your raid.
4. Bad Shoulders / Tier
You bought the wrong shoulders, those are no good for arcane. You should be spending your Triumph badges on tier pieces, either 245 tier if you can get tokens or 232 tier if you can't. Get the Shoulders, Gloves, Legs and Head in that order. Do not get the chest it isn't great. Buy or have crafted Merlin's Robe and Bejewelled Wizard's Bracers if you can afford it. If you can't, spend 58 Emblem of Conquest on the T8.5 chest.
As mentioned, don't gem hit or crit for Arcane. Gem spellpower in a red socket, and spellpower+haste in a yellow socket. Gem two spellpower+spirit gems in blue sockets to meet the metagem requirement. If a socket bonus is at least 7 sp or haste you can gem sp+spirit gems in blue sockets to meet it, otherwise gem spellpower. Don't use the prismatic gem, ever.
For example, your belt should be gemmed: 12 sp + 10 haste (yellow); 23 sp (buckle prismatic socket).
6. Glyph / Armor
Change your Glyph of Mage Armor for Glyph of Molten Armor.
If you are using Mage Armor, don't. Use Molten Armor always.
7. Use RAWR
Get this program, it is essential. Assuming you have windows. Beg borrow or steal windows to use it if you have to.
It will allow you to plan your gear properly, see what items are better than others, and create sets for different amounts of hit.
Last edited by Xodiv; 12-04-2009 at 12:05 AM.
While I think a lot of the above posters are along the right path and to see that you have obviously taken some of their advice which is good, i would like to point out a few things.
1. HASTE... at a glance that is the first thing I noticed. Currently according to armoury your sitting at 186. For an arcane mage this is your dps limiting factor. 186 is terribly low. You want to be aiming for 500+. As mentioned farm reg toc for the Abyssal Rune with 84 haste will boost your dps somewhat.
2. It seems you have your hit under control, you are under the stand alone cap but it is manageable with a spriest or boomkin in the raid. As long as you have either in your raid, missing wont contribute to your loss of dps. Imo, if you have to sacrifice hit for haste or Spellpower, 1-2 % below cap is an acceptable loss.
3. Crit, dont discount crit, even for an arcane mage, as crit scales beautifully allowing you to hit harder. While it should be sacrificed for haste or Spellpower, you still want a healthy amount of it... >20% ideally.
4. Gemming... Do not gem pure spirit, while it does help your crit with the set bonus t9, never, ever gem for spirit, if you need blues for your meta, go Spellpower + spirit. MP5 = bad. Even pure haste is not ideal. Rawr will tell you to go Spellpower + Haste. Which is highly advisable and in your case a much better gem than pure Spellpower.
5. Future gearing... considering that your current gear is very crit heavy, you want to be trading it in for Haste. Ignore mp5 gear unless of course there is a Spell power boost and no one else needs it.
As a note, Arcane mages ARE NOT stacking spirit for evocations. TOC is an example of stacking Int for larger mana pools, where as in a lot of encounters I dont even need to evocate the entire fight. Spirit is taken to increase crit contribution of your molten armour not mana regen.
Last thing to remember is that Arcane Mages are all about burst damage and the proper utilization of your CDs, Icy Veins, Arcane Power, Mirror image, etc. Make sure you understand them and how they work together. Using them all at once is better than spreading them out and be sure to use your mana gems effectively, as good mana management and understanding of an encounter will greatly effect your dps. Transitions are a good time to evocate even when you dont need the mana to avoid low mana points and having to evocate mid fight.
Feel free to armoury me. While no one thing will directly harm your dps, it is much more of a balancing game than anything else. Sound familiar tanks?
Last edited by Salloman; 12-04-2009 at 03:18 PM.
Thank you for all of the helpful advice thus far, I have made some changes and would like another review up to this point to see if I am on the right track. My link is below...thanks!
The World of Warcraft Armory
ok incanters absorbion is goood to have read what it does ur gems are not all good why sirit mix it with sp/spirit haste is a must u dont need much hit/crit for arcane sp/haste is what i work on gear will get u better dps if ur moving ur dps will fall dig ur feet in and use rotation tbh i was hitting 9k on a mob 25 man ony trinkets u wasted badges on that intellet thing go toc 5 man nor get the haste one