Fire blast is critting for ~8k, 8 second cooldown, 3500 mana
Ice lance is critting for ~6k, spammable, 1000 mana
Scorch is critting for ~9k, spammable, 1300 mana
Arcane blast is critting for ~32k, (1300 to 9700) mana
Arcane barrage is critting for ~20k, 4 second cooldown, 2000 mana
Now, think about this for a moment, rather than inform me that I'm not supposed to use non-arcane spells, (ORLY?) or that different spells are different.
Fireblast has a cooldown, and costs over 3 times as much mana as ice lance. As you can see, ice lance does NOT have a cooldown, and it costs an amount of mana consistent with scorch, and other damage spells. Knowing that a spell is always available in pvp, and the free 2500 mana per cast, is very much worth 1-2k damage to me, in the current mana limited environment. Fireblast is close to getting retired forever, which is a shame, because it used to be a mage and shaman exclusive.
What about fire spec? It's golden there, right?
Fire blast, crits for 10k, 14k with ignite, still 3500 mana with a cooldown
Ice lance crits for 6k, still 1000 mana with no cooldown.
Only here, only in FIRE SPEC, does fireblast roughly equal ice lance, but it's still got the cooldown.
But you can get a talented cooldown reset, and it spreads dots! Yes, you get a 'free' reset of fireblast, but only if you've already used it once. To benefit from the impact reset, you have to use fireblast any time it is available, so that the impact reset isn't wasted. Is a 5k poke for 3500 mana, at the start of every fight, really worth it? Only you can answer that question. I'm not even mentioning that you generally have to save your impact procs for the right moment, so it's not a true 'free' fireblast. I guess that's supposed to be a benefit.
If you've read my other posts, you know by now that my point is not really that fire blast is weak. My point is that mage and warlock specializations are pointlessly unfair.
Hunters get a passive boost to ALL damage from all specializations. (not talking about mastery)
Rogues get a passive boost to ALL damage from all specializations.
Hybrids get a passive boost to ALL of whatever role they are fulfilling.
Mages and warlocks do not. They have to use the spells from their particular schools to get the expected levels of damage. All off-school abilities have a passive, persistent reduction of 20%. In arcane spec, arcane spells do 100% damage, all other spell types do 80% damage. In fire spec, fire spells do 100% damage, all other spell types do 80% damage. Frost, as well.
Sure, this is partially consistent with the way the original trees were designed. But it was never this bad. It was never so extreme that entire spells became completely worthless, like fireblast is in non-fire specs. Arcane originally had a benefit to ALL spell damage, to partially make up for the fact that it was a terrible pvp spec. That is now gone, you are no longer allowed to do expected levels of damage from all spells in arcane.