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12-29-2011 @ 3:21PM
What these numbers mean to me, as a mage?Well, it's not that Arcane can't perform, because it can. But the best players abandoned it because Fire almost always performs better, kind of like how Frost is treated every patch. So we get a huge bias in favour of Fire in almost all parses, and the FOTM Arcane mages that are really, really bad stayed Arcane. See: LFR raids with mages that chain cast Arcane Missiles and do 15k on Zon'ozz.I've always observed that it's easy to be a decent Arcane mage and damn hard to be a great one, and if anything this confirms it.
12-29-2011 @ 3:47PM
Arcane is actually fine, especially for bursty parts like people using them on Spine. The problem is fire is OP. People can talk about FOTM, but for me, I'm a mage. I'm not an arcane, i'm not a fire, i'm not a frost... I'm a mage. Which means I go with whatever spec is the absolute highest dps for each fight. Granted, if everything is equal, I'm going fire... cuz I like to blow stuff up.And to be frank, it's not hard to master arcane's rotation. The thing that makes an arcane mage stand out is his activity time, meaning how many arcane blasts can you fit in by barely skirting around the fire on the ground and continue casting without unnecessary movement. Arcane mages will have higher dps leaps than most other specs in terms of just learning a fight, because your dps will be significantly boosted with more activity time.
I've said this for a long time, and you're spot on. It is easy to play arcane to 80% or 90% of its potential. But to squeeze out that last 10 or 20%? That's where the 1-1-1-1-2ers and the "burn phase/conservation phase is easy" mages fall flat on their faces without realizing it.
12-30-2011 @ 6:33PM
This sounds a lot like hunters :)
12-29-2011 @ 6:49PM
I'm not up to raiding level yet, but I've been playing arcane a bit in heroics, and here's what I've observed:-I can theoretically do very well. My DPS is very competitive. I'm easily being at the top of the DPS meters in many fights.-Arcane mages falter in high movement fights. I have to stand still while casting Arcane Blast. And once it's stacked, I have to juggle movement with the Arcane Blast duration. This can make some fights very tricky to do right.-I do have a ramp up time for my DPS because I have to stack our Arcane Blast. I rarely see my max DPS during trash pulls.-Arcane is focused on single targets. I'm great during a boss battle, or when there's only a couple of adds. But large groups I have issues with. I tend to do much better with large groups as Frost.-I still am having issues with my conservation phase - once I'm in it, I'm usually in it for the rest of the boss battle. Sure, I may be a "one button wonder" during the burn phase (although I do toss in things like Arcane Power during a boss battle), but it becomes a bit more complex once I reach the conservation phase. Sometimes I can find time to evocate for another burn phase, but not always.
12-29-2011 @ 7:02PM
Pyro, Fire is fine as is. The fights and stat distribution of the tier favour it and the top players chose it as their spec because it doesn't suffer from all the movement problems of Arcane.logicalfundy,-Anecdotal evidence from 5 man dungeons doesn't tell us much about a spec.-Well-known problem with Arcane.-8 seconds is not even close to an unmanageable ramp-up time.-Arcane Explosion is your friend.-That's because dungeon boss battles hardly last 2 minutes.Start raiding and come back with your impressions then.
12-29-2011 @ 7:37PM
Mug, if you mean "fine" by saying that fire is the best single-target and aoe dps in the game by a fairly significant margin, then sure, they are fine ^_^.@logical - arcane is all about cooldown management, as well as knowing the encounters. Yes, high movement fights will sap your dps, but it will affect everyone's dps. As I said above, the best arcane mages know how to shoot and scoot. They know when one extra tick of standing in an AoE is worth it, if you have like .3 seconds left on your 4-stack arcane blast stack. I'm guessing bosses aren't living long enough for you to get to your second evocation/mana gem phase. In that case, yeah, arcane is going to lag behind. You're right about AoE however, arcane basically has no aoe, it's a single-target wonder that just doesn't compete with fire on aoe fights. (I know you said frost, and frost is okay, but living bomb/ignite/fire blast dot spread is huge on packs of adds/trash.)
12-30-2011 @ 4:12AM
I think the folks who look at the median of the *top 100* parses and deduce that Fire is ahead may have missed a bias. Top 100 parses have a bias towards good RNG, and Fire is unpleasantly dependent on good RNG.Brian, any insight into that possible bias? Essentially, I'm guessing that fire DPS has higher variance than some other specs, and therefore that taking top 100 gives (relatively) a set of numbers that are further from the mean than most other specs.
12-31-2011 @ 5:47PM
@moonfaxx"I've said this for a long time, and you're spot on. It is easy to play arcane to 80% or 90% of its potential. But to squeeze out that last 10 or 20%? That's where the 1-1-1-1-2ers and the "burn phase/conservation phase is easy" mages fall flat on their faces without realizing it."I mostly agree with this, but the problem with it is 90% of a mages potential being reached by people like me just spamming AB all fight long was still outdpsing a lot of other players putting in a LOT more effort.My first time playing a mage beyond level 40 was playing my friends arcane mage in a full clear of heroic firelands. I had no issue whatsoever staying in the top3 dps, and no, thats not just good gear, everyone in the raid was pretty similarly decked out at that point.All I was doing was hitting a macro to pop cooldowns, spamming AB until low, mana gem, AB spam until I have to evo. I think on one or two fights I managed to actually get low enough on mana w/o evo up and started weaving in AM sometimes.I know I wasn't playing at 100%, but I was still putting in numbers far FAR higher than my warlock would put out if someone tried to play it with as little of an understanding of how warlocks work. Hell, even playing my warlock to the best of my ability I still barely do more dps than just sitting there spamming AB on the mage.And that is why it is broken. Or was, maybe, I haven't played any other dps class since DS came out so I don't know if arcane is suddenly not putting out ridiculous numbers for how little effort you have to put into it.
1-03-2012 @ 12:02PM
My main all the way to the middle of Wrath was a fire mage, and I did ok. In Wrath, at least for a while, fire couldn't touch Arcane for PvE or Frost for PvP and I reluctantly abandoned it. Now Arcane is crap ... because the mastery talent is built around a short fight and making it work well is very hard unless you adjust your play style to EACH fight. Not worth the effort.Now I'm considering respeccing fire ... nope, I'll just keep playing my disc priest and to heck with it. Shame though.
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