In World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, the WoW development team will be making lots of changes and additions to class talents and abilities across the board. In this post, I wish to provide you with a look at some changes that I would like to see for the mage class, including some new spells, abilities, talents, and a prediction of how the new Mastery system will work with the different talent specs.
New Mage Spells
Conjure Strudel (now available at level 4): The food and water system for mages is ridiculously clunky during the leveling process. With the dev team looking to make the leveling process smoother and more engaging playstyle-wise in the new expansion, this will be one of the first spells to be modified. Conjure food and drink will be removed completely.
Summon/Tame Familiar (level 81): Mages will be able to tame critters, giving them a small damage boost if they are in the same zone native to the familiar. They will take the slot of non-combat pets. A polymorph minor glyph will allow mage polymorph spells to turn enemies into the form of their familiars.
Unleash Companion (level 83): causes their current non-combat pet to enlarge, enrage, and become a combat pet temporarily, allowing them to do a large amount of damage for a short period of time. If they are killed, they will have to be resummoned. This does not necessarily apply to familiars, but ANY non-combat pet.
Spellsplice (level 85): when a mage uses spells from different schools, casting spellsplice will cast a nuke that will combine the two spells into one. Imagine the channeled multiple strikes ability of Arcane Missiles combined with the snare of frostbolt; or the stacking effect of Arcane Blast with the DoT component of Fireball. Spellsplice is the continued trend of mixing magic schools that have been introduced in other classes (ie, locks and shadow priests) that have been present already with Frostfire Bolt.
Teleport and Portal spells for the new racial capital cities.
Changes to Abilities and Mechanics
DoTs from Fire spells will benefit from Haste and Crit innately. Hasted HoTs and DoTs will not have a shorter duration, just a shorter period in between ticks (meaning they will gain extra ticks to fill in the duration as appropriate).
Fire should care more about DoT-based damage and should revolve around the execute mechanic. That isn’t to say that Fire Mages should be warlocks *shudder* but rather have the DoT components of their spells to matter more. Molten Fury will be more friendly to DoT components on top of their initial spell damage components.
Similarly, Fire should be a bit more offensively defensive in PvP. See Flame Wreath below!
Mana should be a bigger consideration in Frost as it is in Arcane and to a lesser extent Fire. Arcane Blast allowed mages to throttle their DPS based on their mana situation, while Hot Streak allowed Fire Mages to opt out of costly Pyroblasts if they were low on mana. Frost needs a Mana Dump.
Frost should center a bit more around long-term cooldown management than Fire and Arcane, since its individual talents and spells all involve cooldowns (Ice Block, Icy Veins, Ice Barrier, Cold Snap, Deep Freeze).
Arcane Explosion should be the Arcane Mage’s aoe spell of choice, instead of blizzard or flamestrike.
Amplify Magic should be castable on enemies as a magic-based debuff. It will provide a minor spell damage bonus, but is overwritten by stronger effects such as Earth and Moon/Ebon Plaguebringer/Curse of the Elements.
New Talents and Talent Changes
Torment the Weak moved to Frost Tree, and only applicable to movement reduction effects instead of attack speed reduction effects.
Arcane Bomb – Cooldown ability that allows the Arcanist to automatically and repeatedly cast arcane explosion repeatedly for a short duration while he casts other spells such as blizzard or flame strike.
Empowered Arcane Explosion – Further increases the damage of arcane explosion. Relatively deep arcane talent.
Sheer Cold – Gives your snare effects other than blizzard a chance to reduce the channel time of blizzard by a significant amount. Frost’s AoE answer to Missile Barrage.
Flame Wreath – Surrounds the Fire mage with a giant wreath of fire, causing any movement by enemy players or NPCs within the range of the spell to take a large amount of damage to those inside. The Mage must remain within the wreath for the effect to last.
Talents should make mages of their respective schools care more about their corresponding armor spells.
Mastery Passive Talent Tree bonuses
Arcane Direct Damage
Spell Critical Damage
Arcane Direct Damage – Damage caused by Arcane direct-damage spells increased.
Afterburn – DoT damage from Fire spells increased.
Arctic Explorer – Cooldown on spells reduced.
These are my predictions and my wishlist for the upcoming Cataclysm expansion. What do you think? Do you agree, disagree, or have other types of spells desired from your spec? Lemme know!