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I believe it's all about preference with the bomb because looking at the mastery, none of them directly increase that spec's dmg. Frost bomb's dmg is ALL at the end....giving good burst, Nether Tempest's dmg is at a constant, Living Bomb is a mix of both of them, some dmg consistently with a burst at the end. Frost bomb is nice cuz it has a slow, but it's the only one that isnt instant cast, and i believe deals the highest dmg, but like i said the drawback is the cast time. And this is from a pvp standpoint, i'm not sure how much it matters for pve. But of course in pve, having to cast frost bomb can be a nuisance but if you get it off it's pretty rewarding. It just seems that frost always takes Frost Bomb because if u time it well, the dmg at the end of frost bomb + frost's other burst, can be nasty. Fire tend to take Living bomb because it's easy to apply and deals decent dmg, I rarely see pvp mages take nether tempest as it just doesnt seem to apply enough pressure.
This is all my opinion and I dont have much math to back it up. So it's whatever you want, I am fire and I like living bomb because it's easy to apply and spread, like HIV :D
Unless you have a mutated GP 140, then it wont spread at all
Edited by Tyraeus on 2/17/2013 12:25 PM PST
As far as PVE goes:
I think frost bomb is best for frost mages because we stack haste above all other secondary stats, and haste helps reduce the cast time.
Living bomb is great if you're fire because inferno blast is in your rotation and with the fire blast glyph you can spread it around with no effort.
That leaves nether tempest for arcane or perhaps for fire mages that prefer it and do not want to use the fire blast glyph.
I would try them all out and see which you prefer though, as the dps difference is probably minimal. I know it took me a while to get used to using frost bomb...I didn't like the cast time at first.
Yeah Frost Bomb + Fire Blast Glyph hits for something pathetic (usually around 28-32k and Fire Blast for an additional 18-20kP), and needs to hit on a crit to match that of LB and NT.
Without the Fire Blast glyph though, I've had it crit for around 110k damage on a player, which is more then what NT or LB will do.. it just requires better timing.
It would help if you specify if this is pvp or pve. Here are some things to keep in mind:
1. Single target they are mostly equal.
2. Two targets nether tempest wins. Three targets living bomb wins. More then three frost bomb wins.
3. While playing solo in the world, living bomb and frost bomb have been known to pull additional neutral mobs when they detonate. In this case nether tempest does not pull things not in combat with you.
4. For frost brain freeze is tied to the bomb. Frost bomb will always give you one proc of brain freeze, while nether vortex and living bomb are a bit more rng (though reletively same number of procs long run).
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