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Thread: PVE Magecraft for 3.3.3 in 5 minutes.

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    PVE Magecraft for 3.3.3 in 5 minutes.

    Not by any stretch a comprehensive guide, but there seem to be a lot of the same mage questions and I figure it'll be easier to answer them in one place.

    Spec

    Two are equally viable:
    • Fire 18/51/0+2. Put the 2 extra points in Flame Throwing unless you have a good fight-specific reason for something else.
    • Arcane 57/3/11. Can move 2 Ice Shards points to Frost Warding, and trade points between Arcane Stability and Arcane Focus depending on how much hit vs pushback prevention you need. This is a good raid compromise with 3/5 Arcane Stability giving 100% pushback prevention with Imp. Concentration Aura.
    • Correct glyphs are in the links above, there are no options.

    Spell Rotation/Priority

    Fire Priority: LB -> HS Pyro -> Fireball. Keep up scorch debuff if you don't have a warlock providing it.

    Arcane Rotation: ABspam04MBAM. With 2pcT10 switch to ABspam0234MBAM. If you get super unlucky with procs clear the stack with (a non-MB) AM.

    Gear

    Use Rawr. It is the best model of mage combat around. To begin, load your toon from armory, tick all the buffs you have. Watch the video on the Rawr site.

    "Optimal" gear discussion can be found in this thread on ElitistJerks.

    Stats

    Hit cap yourself, 17% total from talents, buffs/debuffs and gear. Priority is vaguely:

    Fire: (Hit to cap) > SP > Crit > Haste
    Arcane: (Hit to cap) > SP = Haste > Crit

    Use Rawr for your individual case and to plan gemming and enchanting.

    Cooldowns

    Mirror Image is on the GCD. Don't macro it in with other cooldowns because you will waste up to 1.5 seconds of them while the GCD expires. Hit MI, then once the GCD expires hit your macro containing the other abilities and AB-cast.

    Fire: Combustion and Quad Core (4pcT10 MI).
    Use Combustion with Quad Core always. You want to use QC: (a) during heroism, (b) below 35% boss HP, and (c) as many times as possible.

    Arcane: Arcane Power, Icy Veins, Speed Pot and Quad Core.
    In the absence of Heroism(/Bloodlust) this is easy: Quad Core+IV+AP+Pot up front, then AP as soon as it's available, then wait for AP to do QC+IV+AP together.

    With Heroism in the mix you must avoid GCD capping yourself, so how many abilities you can stack inside Heroism depends on your haste rating (assuming full raid buffs and black magic enchant here).

    With 2pcT10.

    <564 haste - AP+IV+QC inside hero, lone AP, AP+IV+QC+Pot outside.
    564-882 haste = QC+AP+Pot inside hero, lone AP, lone IV, AP+IV+QC outside.
    >882 haste = QC+AP inside hero, AP+IV outside, AP+IV+QC+pot outside.

    Procs

    You will have procs from things like Lightweave, Black Magic, ICC rep ring, and trinkets. Amazing mages will time their cooldowns for when these are going to proc. Popping everything up front mostly gives you at least one coincidence.
    Last edited by Xodiv; 06-13-2010 at 10:50 PM.

  2. #2
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    Had a few queries, so here's some brief answers.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Q. Can I spec frostfire, or frost?

    Not for competitive PVE DPS, no.

    Q. What does "ABspam0234MBAM" mean?

    This is the arcane rotation. It means:
    • Spam arcane blast until you get Missile Barrage proc.
    • Once you have a Missile Barrage proc, cast Arcane Missiles if you have 0, 2, 3 or 4 stacks of the Arcane Blast buff.
    • Otherwise keep casting Arcane Blast.
    Q. Why is my DPS so bad?

    It's because you are not casting enough. Probably because you are moving too much.

    The #1 rule of caster DPS is ABC: Always Be Casting.

    Q. How do I cast more?

    Don't move when you don't have to. Plant yourself in range, take your fingers off the movement keys, and spam those spells unless you are going to die if you don't move.

    Also get a cast bar addon with a lag indicator (such as Quartz), and make sure you are pre-casting so you lose as little time to lag as possible.

    Q. What is the hit cap?

    It's the amount of spell +hit you need to never miss.

    Q. OK smartass, what is the hit cap number?

    At level 80, versus a boss mob, the hit cap is 17% +hit. You get some from talents depending on you spec, 1% if you have draenei in your party, and 3% if you have a boomkin or shadow priest attacking your target.

    The fire spec has no hit from talents. The arcane spec has between 3 and 6 percent from talents depending on how many points in Arcane Focus you took.

    At level 80 for 1% you need 26.23 hit rating, rounded up.

  3. #3
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    Starter Gear Sets

    These are basic starter gear sets for 3.3.3, assuming: you aren't raiding; you don't pvp; you aren't super rich and buying ilevel 264 gear. These will still take a lot of heroic farming and (depending on your realm) about 3000-5000g to have the chest, wrist, waist and feet pieces crafted.

    The main problem at this gear level is balancing hit, as there are not a lot of options in each slot.

    Arcane

    Head: Sunstrider's Hood of Conquest / Chaotic Skyflare Diamond + Purified Dreadstone / Arcanum of Burning Mysteries
    Neck: Arcane Loops of Anger
    Shoulders: Sunstrider's Shoulderpads of Conquest / Runed Cardinal Ruby / Greater Inscription of the Storm
    Back: Disguise of the Kumiho / / Greater Speed
    Chest: Merlin's Robe / Purified Dreadstone + Reckless Ametrine + Runed Cardinal Ruby / Powerful Stats
    Wrists: Bejeweled Wizard's Bracers / Runed Cardinal Ruby / Superior Spellpower
    Hands: Sunstrider's Gauntlets of Conquest / Runed Cardinal Ruby / Exceptional Spellpower
    Waist: Sash of Ancient Power / Purified Dreadstone + Runed Cardinal Ruby * 2 / Eternal Belt Buckle
    Legs: Sunstrider's Leggings of Conquest / Reckless Ametrine + Rigid King's Amber / Brilliant Spellthread
    Feet: Spellslinger's Slippers / Purified Dreadstone + Runed Cardinal Ruby / Icewalker
    Finger1: Band of the Invoker
    Finger2: Heartmender Circle
    Trinket1: Talisman of Resurgence
    Trinket2: Abyssal Rune & Shard of the Crystal Heart
    Main Hand: Seethe / / Black Magic
    Off Hand: Shriveled Heart
    Ranged: Brimstone Igniter

    Use Abyssal Rune when you have 3% hit from Misery or Improved Faerie Fire, and Shard of the Crystal Heart when you don't.

    Fire

    Head: Sunstrider's Hood of Conquest / Chaotic Skyflare Diamond + Purified Dreadstone / Arcanum of Burning Mysteries
    Neck: Arcane Loops of Anger
    Shoulders: Sunstrider's Shoulderpads of Conquest / Runed Cardinal Ruby / Greater Inscription of the Storm
    Back: Kurisu's Indecision / / Greater Speed
    Chest: Merlin's Robe / Purified Dreadstone + Potent Ametrine + Runed Cardinal Ruby / Powerful Stats
    Wrists: Bejeweled Wizard's Bracers / Runed Cardinal Ruby / Superior Spellpower
    Hands: Sunstrider's Gauntlets of Conquest / Runed Cardinal Ruby / Exceptional Spellpower
    Waist: Sash of Ancient Power / Purified Dreadstone + Runed Cardinal Ruby * 2 / Eternal Belt Buckle
    Legs: Sunstrider's Leggings of Conquest / Potent Ametrine + Veiled Ametrine / Brilliant Spellthread
    Feet: Spellslinger's Slippers / Purified Dreadstone + Runed Cardinal Ruby / Icewalker
    Finger1: Band of the Invoker
    Finger2: Heartmender Circle
    Trinket1: Abyssal Rune
    Trinket2: Shard of the Crystal Heart
    Main Hand: Seethe / / Mighty Spellpower
    Off Hand: Shriveled Heart
    Ranged: Brimstone Igniter

    If you don't have Misery / Improved Faerie Fire to provide 3% hit, use Sinner's Confession in place of Heartmender Circle and pick up 40 more hit rating from gems and enchants.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the nice job!
    I have a question: Why is the arcane rotation be ABspam0234MBAM with 2T10?
    With around 950 haste, the 2T10 effect can cover 4 ABs, I think it would be a dps loss to refresh the 2T10 effect before it drops and also a non-4stack AM.
    Personally I will consider ABspam0234MBAM only when I'm running out of mana.

    And for the gcd capping part, I dont think it would be a problem to cap gcd during heroism/bloodlust. It is the AB casting time that matters. Before the casting time of AB is reduced to 1sec, it is fine to stack all haste CDs/procs together.

    I would recommend Wrathful Gladiator's Cloak of Subjugation for arcane over the badge cloak, and Wrathful Gladiator's Cloak of Dominance for fire. Those can be bought from the honor vendor in Stormwind/Ogrimmar.

  5. #5
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    Hi, thanks for the comments.

    With respect to the PvP gear, yes those are both upgrades, as would be a number of other pvp pieces. I assumed you are not PvPing (that's in the first sentence). You can buy honor with stone keeper shards, but how possible that is depends on your realm and how often your faction controls wintergrasp there.

    I think you have misunderstood the GCD capping. At the haste values given the AB cast time is reduced to 1 second. I.e., with full raid buffs, black magic, 2pcT10, IV and bloodlust/heroism you cap AB/MBAM cast time at 1.0 seconds with 684 haste rating from gear. It is a DPS loss to use cooldowns to increase haste past a 1s AB versus using them outside of heroism/bloodlust.

    The 2pcT10 proc's buff (Pushing The Limit) begins its 5 second count down as soon as MBAM casts, not when it finishes channeling, and doesn't apply to that AM. It is impossible for 4 AB + 1 MBAM casts to be hasted from this buff because it would require being GCD capped at 1s and having 0 cast latency (needs 5 casts in 5 seconds). Even to get AB3MBAM fully covered you need 200% haste, which would require 1829 haste rating from gear.

  6. #6
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    Ah, sorry I didn't notice your assumptions. And yeah I didn't realize that you refer to the AB cast time, my apologize again.

    I use a Spellhaste Calculator to check the numbers, and the result is 564 haste to cap AB under full raid buffs, 2T10, IV and BL. I didn't realize how easy to cap AB under BL until now o_O...

    I am pretty sure that the 2T10 buff shows up after the completion of MBAM. You can easily get 4 ABs (but not the MBAM) under the 2T10 effect at around 950 haste. Rawr is giving ABspam04MBAM slightly more dps than ABspam0234MBAM rotation, but ABspam0234MBAM has better mana efficiency.

  7. #7
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    No need to apologise, it's good to have someone check your math and your assumptions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tschus View Post
    564 haste to cap AB under full raid buffs, 2T10, IV and BL
    That seems to be the right number, mine appear to have missed Swift Retribution. I will update the original post once I double check everything again, thanks.

    I am pretty sure that the 2T10 buff shows up after the completion of MBAM.
    I just checked this in-game again and it appears when the channel ends, in the non-clip case when the last missile leaves your hands. Again not what I had expected. However (and this was always the main point, I just wanted you to force me to check my work) the DPS loss from switching to 0234MBAM is very small, the mana savings are (on average) big, and it's an easier rotation (MBAM whenever it's up, since you can't get it at 1) so I still suggest it is a better rotation once you have the two piece bonus.

    If you believe Rawr (we have no reason not to) switching to 0234MBAM is less than a 100 DPS loss. Consider that over the course of a 5 minute fight, this difference is only 30,000 damage. If the mana savings, or any other advantage of 0234MBAM, allow you to spend more time DPSing and you can do 30,000 more damage in that time, then 0234MBAM is actually a damage increase over 04MBAM.

  8. #8
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    I don't entirely agree with the specs you posted, but it's most likely personal preference.

    Arcane:

    I would remove the 3 points out if stability and place into other things.
    1 in arcane focus: I prefer hit from talents over hit from gear and 1% of mana on each spell adds up on the long run for a spec that thrives on converting the blue bar into damage.
    Then either 2 points in magic absorption or 1 in MA and 1 in slow. MA is more valuable than pushback protection in ICC and slow has its use when you need to solo an add on saurfang or when a dreamwalker add is chasing you for some random reason. It doesn't hurt on lich king as well.

    MA is a tremendous help for your healers on any fight with unavoidable damage and specially on fights with a steady stream of incoming damage.

    Pushback protection however has limited uses and is only a major help on marrowgar.


    Fire:

    Remove the point from student of the mind and place it in MA. The reason for MA are the same as above.

    The reason to not take is SotM, is because it's worthless. Mages do not seek out spirit on our gear, because the stat does so little for us.

    A BiS mage should have around 450 sprit from buffs, gems and base.
    So if we gain 4%, it would be a gain of a whopping 18 spirit. 55% of your spirit gets converted to crit, so you'll gain 9.9 crit rating which is not worth it when compared against 40 resistance to all schools of magic.

    In order to gain 1% crit from the talent, you'd need 45.91crit rating or a gain of 83.4 spirit which requires a total amount of 2085 spirit.

  9. #9
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    Still up-to-date for 3.3.5; no mage mechanic updates in this patch.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by takolin View Post
    I would remove the 3 points out if stability and place into other things. ...


    . . . Pushback protection however has limited uses and is only a major help on marrowgar.
    LDW : Frostbolt volley
    Saurfang : Blood Boil
    Fester : Blight ticks
    Rotface : slimespray (lolavoidable), ooze ticks
    PP : Puddles, and ooze targeting abilities
    Princes : fireballs, sparklies
    BQL : Pact, the constant ticking
    VDW : Frostbolt volley, blazings
    Sindragosa : Frost aura
    LK : infest

    Not to mention pushback prevention is invaluable in HMs
    3 points + Conc aura = 100% pushback prevention.

    As for the posted spec, frostshards? woot woot aoe dps? Always take warding, l2 ward, healers will love you.

    I never found arcane subtlety that useful, invis is amazing for a threat reset after blowing mirrors.


    As for no mage mechanic updates.... they fixed the 2pT9 bug.

  11. #11
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    Helping out a bit in terms of arcane. If somebody adds this I'll just change it to a hey nice thread post.

    CRIT as Arcane
    (Main modifiers)
    --6% inceration
    --3% instability
    --3% proc of Focus Magic
    --30% arcane potency proc
    --5% imp scorch (fire mage) / imp shadowbolt (demo, or aff lock)
    --3% recieving Focus Magic
    --3% boom erm moonkin aura / totem of wrath
    Thusly 70% being that hard cap, so the soft cap changes with various buffs, and are as follows:
    Not counting arcane potency due to is low (10% uptime), yet I will cover in the next section.
    - From talents alone (incen, instab) ~ 61%
    - From talents & Imp scorch / shadowbolt ~ 56%
    - From talents & Imp crit affect & one 3% reduction (fm procing, or buffed, moonkin / totem of wrath) ~ 53%
    - From talents & Imp crit affect & two 3% reduction (see above) ~ 50%
    - From talents & Imp crit affect & three 3% reduction (all above) ~ 47%
    So with arcane potency proc
    - From talents alone (incen, instab) ~ 31%
    - From talents & Imp scorch / shadowbolt / totem ~ 26%
    - From talents & Imp crit affect & one 3% reduction (fm procing, or buffed, or moonkin / totem of wrath) ~ 23%
    - From talents & Imp crit affect & two 3% reduction (see above) ~ 20%
    - From talents & Imp crit affect & three 3% reduction (all above) ~ 17%
    note: Percentages are given as crit involves int, spirit, and critical strike rating. If you want to know what your crit really is use magenuggets it autocalcs your crit, haste, hit, and spell power (with respect to buffs, and boss debuffs)


    HIT as Arcane
    Hit cap: You need 17% hit to never miss you will get 6% from talents. So it breaks down like this
    Standard (17%) = 446
    Standard w/ Racial (16%) = 417
    Talents (11%) = 287
    Talents, /w Racial (10%) = 261
    Talents, /w Misery / Imp FF (8%) = 209
    Talents, /w Misery / Imp FF, /w Racial (7%) = 183
    NOTE: all hit ratings values are rounded up.
    NOTE: Racial mean dreania heroic presence
    (sorta copied from EJ, i rounded up and checked their math but really i couldn't do much)

    Lastly in BiS 277 & 284 gear FFB out preforms Arcane and Fireb specs (at least that what rawr told me).

    Lastly 40% threat reduction has always helped me stay below 10k tps which i find its useful to not pull the boss off of the tanks, while my progression tanks out tps me, pug tanks WON'T, and it helps me from being in a you will pull situation if something goes wrong. (A mage should not be between MT and OT on threat IMO)

    P.S.
    Quote Originally Posted by Deedles
    Always take warding
    I actually use warding, healers do love you for it (really funny when class officer dies and you don't because of what he considered a "Waste of Two Talent Points.")

    edit 1: remove crit, add rant about threat reduction
    edit 2: re-add crit info, can somebody check my maths
    edit 3: Wardings = healer love = healer friends = better chance of not dieing
    Last edited by leethaxor; 06-24-2010 at 07:00 PM. Reason: crits up
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  12. #12
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    Bookmarked,
    Thanks for all the info =)

  13. #13
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    in frost (with arcane only going down to TTW and imp counterspell), would I get sp from int or is it only from that deeper arcane talent (forgot the name)?
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