Mage Feedback

I've been browsing over the forums quite a bit since Mists of Pandaria was launched.
To all of you about to read this thread... including those who feel as though at some point in your WoW career that you were wronged in some way, in PvE or PvP, by a Mage... I apologize on behalf of Mages everywhere and encourage you to keep your own feedback relevant and constructive. ;)
It's a reflection of what I, and any others who would contribute to this thread, believe to be the current state of the play style of the Mage class.

I love my Mage.
I've played him for as long as I remember, even in times when I felt as though our classes damage wasn't represented well and we were the bastard children of Warlocks, our hated rivals. (Not very often, I'll admit. Maybe Sunwell and Ulduar in my memory... don't correct me if I'm wrong. :P)
The fact is, it didn't bother me. I enjoyed my playstyle. I loved what a Mage stood for, the way that it was tied so heavily into Warcraft lore with some of its most memorable heroes. I really enjoyed the spells and abilities in their arsenal and my hopes even soared at the prospect of Mists of Pandaria where the 25% elemental talent specialization was removed and I once again had the feel of an Elementalist who utilized abilities from all three of my elemental fields of mastery.

In the grand scheme of things, numbers are ultimately just a small part of the class I play.

The level 90 talents are horrific...
Okay, maybe not horrific, but they take away the smoothness and synergy of our abilities and lend a clunky feel to our playstyle and tend to punish us for movement in a fashion entirely different than our other ranged counterparts.
The common argument tends to be... "You don't like a 25% damage buff?" or "It's not difficult to drop a Rune of Power or use Invocation to dps! Mage damage is fine where it is!" and that's not the point. The damage increase given by these talents is necessary to put us on par with other classes. It's like a Feral Druid using Savage Roar or a Rogue using Slice and Dice. It's a buff, with upkeep, that maintains our average instead of making us a force to be reckoned with except it is a fragile thing to maintain or removed entirely should the boss decide to do anything but stand in one place and get punched in the face.
I mean seriously, it shows the level of thought that was put into these abilities when they were first created... our initial talents were three different kinds of polymorph. As if some game designer was sitting at a conference and actually spoke up to say, "Sure Avatar is cool... but you know what Mages would REALLY like?! More Polymorphs!". Our level 75 talents are three different kinds of DoTs that all do comparable damage but are slightly better than one another depending on the encounter. Could we not just have a Mage DoT that changes depending on our specialization? It's like making Warlocks choose between Corruption, Curse of Doom and Immolation if they all did the same damage... how exciting!

They're boring. As is the entire class. The changes that have been made to a Mage, and to our contribution to our raid for the last few expansions, has undergone next to no changes and frankly it has left my class feeling rather bland when faced with many of the incredible new abilities that have been added to many of the other classes in the game.
I'd love to throw up portals to throw my allies across the battlefield, or pop a tranquility to save my raid and take stress off of my healers, but instead I find myself putting in that extra effort to push some extra dps onto my meter so that one can justify bringing a "pure dps class" whose raid utility was next to nothing over someone who can not only bring the boom nearly as hard as me... but contributes in other ways with their offspecs and extra abilities. (*coughcoughArchoncoughcough* C'mon! You already have the model on the Elegon fight!)

Back in Wrath I was stunned when Blizzard made a point to, during one of their patches, communicate with their player base and explain why each of the changes had been made. It was so refreshing to be able to see their thought process, even if I didn't necessarily agree with it, and to feel like I was in the loop as opposed to simply sitting in the dark and wondering week after week "Is this the design that Blizzard intended? Will there be changes on the horizon that I should just hold out for?".
It was customer service. And it was welcomed.
It gave the appearance of intelligence. Like they were aware of perceived mistakes, or at least had the guts and logic to stand behind a decision that they had made as opposed to leaving their frustrated players without answers.

Can we get some answers, please?
The community as a whole seems, for the most part anyways, to rail against the new talents and feel as though the class that they have come to love and feel passionate about playing has been damaged by something that we deem to be annoying and bland.
Will this be the design that you intended, and have no intent to go back and change? Or will there maybe be some answers in our future and perhaps a sign that Blizzard will revisit one of its most iconic classes and give it some abilities that again define us with their uniqueness?

A long-time fan and diehard Mage.

No! Such power! Major Nanners's summoning of the final Bananaclysm will destroy all life on Azeroth! We must stop him before he summons a blow that will 'split' the world!
I pretty much agree with your post. I really don't like the Mage Bombs much. It feels like a hiccup in gameplay. I sigh everytime I need to refresh it because a lot of times it interrupts me trying to build a good Ignite for Combustion.

The lvl 90 talents are the same way, a hiccup. It's just something you have to do, and want to get done with it as fast as possible so you can get back to the fun stuff.

We do pretty good damage, and you didn't mention this but I assume you know that, but the class just isn't that fun anymore. What drew me to them in Cataclysm (I played BC, skipped WOTLK) was that the specs synergy was out of this world.

For Fire you would cast some spells, which procced dots, which allowed you to use combustion. You used Blast Wave/FS, which helped proc Impact. You got to spread those dots with that impact. You were always doing damage and everything just flowed really well.

I have played this class a lot, and in really high level content, and the last few weeks of Mists have had me contemplating not only quitting the class, but the game as a whole. I am currently leveling some other classes to see if I like them in raids.
I've played mages since January, 2005, and have been solely arcane since we were first given the ability to specialize. So far this has been the most difficult nerf to adjust to, yet.

I agree, the class now IS chunky, even if you're the Queen of Macros. I keep two Rune of Powers up during movement fights, casting the first one JUST before the pull (so I can run back and forth but keep at 100% mana -- to try to maximize my damage) and I keep Ice Ward up on the tank, at all times, for cc and to help the healers out. I've macro'd Living Bomb so I can keep it up all the time and have glyphed into Fire Blast to take advantage of the instant, spreading, fire damage.

On a POSITIVE, I *do* appreciate the new ability to counterspell without interrupting my cast, even with the 4 second penalty.

Bottom line is, I've gone from being a person known for "knowing her class" and always finding a way to consistently eek out top DPS spots, to being at the bottom of the Recount charts (I'm only ahead of the healer... and sometimes ONE other dos? REALLY...?) even if the fight is a "stand still and blast" fight.

Knowing, in previous expansions, gear had SO much to do with my DPS, I've worked hard at being in all 463 gear and have farmed the rep to be in 4 purples (with more soon to come), thinking it would help, but, it has not.

I LOVE arcane and have stuck with it through every nerf. But this expansion is ... humbling. I've respec'd, reglyphed, fine tooned, and spent lots and lots of time at the Crash Test Dummies, but I cannot seem to BEAT my poor mage into producing anything more than 40k dps, at very best (when Fire is in the 60k's +...)

I cannot expect my GM to keep me on our first tier raid team unless I sell my soul and join the flavor of the month club and go Fire. As much as I'm enjoying this expansion in general, I'm really not enjoying it as Arcane... Worse, still, are the other two guilds who've been wooing me to switch to their (very high performing and so much fun) raid teams... who are no longer courting, and I can't say I blame them ONE bit.

Here's a rub. Back in WotLK and BC, I did a ton of raid leading. I LOVE mages... and I had lots of folks who wanted to raid... so... I have five mages I led raids with; all different horde classes (after all, you had to get the guild achievement), all with different professions (I'm an independent woman), but all arcane. What can I say? I LOVE mages! So here I am, stuck.

Can't wait for the adjustment that I KNOW always comes... it just can't come soon enough.

Kworkz (aka Kymberly, KymzSprite, Kymberrly, etc)
Who USED to be a Savior of Azeroth...
With the release of the latest patch notes and the lack of communication on any official capacity it seems pretty apparent that, at least for the moment, the Mage talents are something that the employees at Blizzard are satisfied with and doesn't merit a revisit on their part. It is entirely possible that it is something that they are looking at and just have yet to release any information but, unfortunately, for the moment I'm just too frustrated with how bland and punishing the playstyle on my Mage is and I've finished leveling my tank.

It's quite a shame, really... with so many iconic characters such as Medivh, Khadgar, Jaina, Kael'thas and many more, some in part who helped to create the Warcraft universe as we know it since the unveiling of the world of Azeroth in their original platforms... I had hoped to see something unique and exciting to continue to define us.

Throw us a bone.
How many more threads and posts will it take until a problem of this caliber in your Mage roster is addressed?
I agree with your post, hell I haven't raided much ever on this toon, thought I would reroll to my favorite class with the new xpac (Played a resto druid for 5 years) and it just seems that I am working way to hard to get what little dps I can and I cannot get a rhythm going at all. I really don't want to reroll but theres gotta be something out there that doesn't make me want to punch trees and roll kittens after a heroic. (Not even doing much of those).
I have to tell you that the problems you describe above are amplified when you play a warlock now. Even playing a DK amplifies how bad the Mage has become. The natural flow that Mages had from one spell to another is lost. The class that was made of glass and had to be cunning to survive is now shielded and cauterized so they can survive being forced to stand still for ridiculously long periods. Even a fire Mage, who had to kill it before it killed you, is no longer the overly exposed heavy canon - now it's a slow killing dotting class. No other class has to stand still and bandage like this. Putting a swirly graphic on it does not make it any more fun than bandaging. Admit it.

Blizz devs always warn that making any change can have all sorts of unintended effects. It is why they are slow making changes. However, I don't see them fixing this one. To make things worse, the MVP of this forum, who I understand is a role playing Mage that hasn't seen a mage in a raid or pvp outside of a sim, has "brought the matter to the attention of the Devs" without her support. Who knows what was shared and I can assure you we do not have an advocate fighting for us. No, don't expect this level of a problem to be fixed. You would be fooling yourself.

Plain fact is that Blizz didn't work on Mages this expansion. Look closely and I think you will agree. They worked on Warlock and Shaman and Pandas. We got some recycled stuff from old instances and the thought process was poor. Reversing it is not going to happen. I hate it as much as you but I think that is the reality of where we are now.
10/11/2012 02:30 AMPosted by Kworkz
I LOVE arcane and have stuck with it through every nerf. But this expansion is ... humbling. I've respec'd, reglyphed, fine tooned, and spent lots and lots of time at the Crash Test Dummies, but I cannot seem to BEAT my poor mage into producing anything more than 40k dps, at very best (when Fire is in the 60k's +...)

I know exactly what you mean and how you feel. I used to know Arcane well and at times could squeak out an extra 2k - 5K over a comparatively geared arcane mage. Love the old guy in Firelands, didn't like him so much in Dragon Soul. And now I'm scratching my head wondering what happened to my beloved class. He fell to the bottom of the DPS charts like a stone in water.

People said Fire is better. So, I gave it a shot. I never ever felt the desire to use a second spec before.

Without any optimization or knowing Fire's rotation I hit some training dummies and did more damage over Arcane by switching to Fire. I don't get why this is. So now I'm learning the rotation, and learning to play Fire Mage, not because I want to, but because it's was easier to do better damage.

In either spec (Fire or Arcane) the Bomb feels like an after thought. I know I have to cast it because it does a significant amount of damage. It's just kind of in the way of the rotation and doesn't really flow.

I also think this was my first experience in an expansion where I feel like my Mage didn't improve in his damage. I don't know if it's the Bombs, the rotations, but I'm left wondering is it me who isn't enjoying the changes or are we all having some disagreements.

10/14/2012 12:14 PMPosted by Senlord
I'm left wondering is it me who isn't enjoying the changes or are we all having some disagreements.

Trust me, you're not the only one! There is absolutely zero joy, as a mage, to put up subpar dps. Between this, and the dailies that can take ALL DAY, I'm tired, and the thought of having to level four MORE arcane mages makes me want to just go back to bed.

If I weren't a raider, I'm sure the experience would be much better; ugh, it's disheartening. In fact, I need to get on and do dailies, now, and I just can't stand the thought of it. There are too many of them and they take too long.

I've tweaked even more, and creative macro-ing *IS* helping me improve my performance to slightly more than mortified. My guild and I went into the Vault (of course, my crappy dps has motivated me to be farming for rep with a vengeance so I can get better gear, asap, so I was one of -- if not THE -- the best geared people in the raid at an ilevel of 467...) . and WHEN everything lined up so I could get a rune down IMMEDIATELY before the pull, was able to get my pre-pot in, could save my Presence of Mind to put down my second rune, used Alter Time to best benefit, and lucked out with rng so I didn't get chained, I was putting up healthier numbers... again... with extraordinary effort. It was clunky, laser focused, required double and triple hitting some keys to progress in some macros that have spells with global cooldowns, etc.

Although I *do* get a kick out of finding tricks to manipulate game play so I can put up better numbers (I live for it...) the effort, for a woman whose PLAYED mages since 1/2005, and has been soley arcane since it became a choice for us, was extraordinarily challenging and missing one element or being on the receiving end of any bad RNG has a significantly detrimental effect. Don't get me wrong -- I'd rather have a complicated and situation based rotation than be a one-key-spammer, but, my dps was wildly inconsistent, which is NOT what a raid leader should expect from our class.

I'm confident Blizzard will eventually make tweaks -- they always have in the past. In the meantime, between Dailies from Hell, the nerfs, and the amount of time and energy that's required just to do "admin" work, I'm heartsick. Again, I sat at my computer to spend another couple of hours on dailies, and just can't face it, so came here, instead.

Good luck, you arcane mages!

Kworkz / Kymberly / Kymberrly, KymzSprite
USED to be a Savior of Azeroth
Thanks for all your comments. I'm a relatively new WoW player and after the expansion thought I really just wasn't doing something right. I've looked and read different forums trying to figure out what I was doing wrong...seems it's not me it's the class overall.

I too hope they make some changes.

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