Mage 5.2 PVE raiding survey

Mage
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Lissanna, can you explain why GC just tweeted, on the very day the non-internal logs show all three mages specs *literally* the bottom three specs, that he was "happy" with mage performance? Can you ask him why he would say something like that?


https://twitter.com/CM_Zarhym/status/309554202462519297

It was in response to this. Sometimes you have to dig into the tweets to get the gist of why someone is saying something. Blizzard hasn't just nerfed mages and then washed their hands of the situation.
My initial feedback compilation highlighted:
A general lack of multi-target AOE damage across the specs, multiple problems with arcane, frost's gear scaling issues, and additional notes about fire problems at lower gear levels.

keep posting more feedback!

Please, please, please stress the issues raiding Frost mages are having with Freeze i.e. Raiding as Frost you must now swap your rotation around from fight to fight depending on whether Freeze will be viable or not and you need to keep a list of what mobs Freeze works on and which ones it doesn't (not fun!).
keep posting more feedback!


Sorry if I missed out on this, but do you want us to add more logs to our original posts or make new posts with just the WoL link and a short explanation?
My initial feedback compilation highlighted:
A general lack of multi-target AOE damage across the specs, multiple problems with arcane, frost's gear scaling issues, and additional notes about fire problems at lower gear levels.

keep posting more feedback!

Please, please, please stress the issues raiding Frost mages are having with Freeze i.e. Raiding as Frost you must now swap your rotation around from fight to fight depending on whether Freeze will be viable or not and you need to keep a list of what mobs Freeze works on and which ones it doesn't (not fun!).


I fired off a note to GC this morning explaining this issue.
Part 1: Show me the numbers:
1) What is your current 5.2 specialization?
Fire
2) What type of content have you run in 5.2 (5-mans, solo, LFR, 10-normal, 25-normal, etc)?
25N
3) Link(s) to 5.2 raid logs on your mage (even LFR logs are useful):
http://worldoflogs.com/guilds/102345/
4) Did you change specializations for 5.2? If you changed specs for 5.2, what spec were you before?
Fire pre-5.2
5) Is your ilevel generally around the same range as your other raid members from the logs you posted? If not, are you over-geared or under-geared compared to the other members of your raid?
Yes the entire raid is 495+ and several are 500+

Part 2: How are you feeling about your mage?

6) What is your average ilevel?
503
7) What quality of life problems are you seeing with your current specialization?
No ability to cleave and
8) If you changed specializations, why did you change?
Didn't change specs.
9) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's movement damage?
Improved with scorch compared to 5.1, but compared to other rdps casters that can move while casting their main fillers there is still room for improvement in my opinion.
10) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's stand-still damage?
Not very good, it is hard to get good ignites up for combustion even through POM AT Berserk. And the inability to spread it to more than 1 additional target is hurting for some cleave fights. This might just require a change in playstyle though, but it is a very noticeable difference from 5.1
11) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's utility in raids?
Very poor. I buff, I drop a table. I'm brought for my ability to DPS.
12) If you could change one thing to improve your current spec, what would it be?
I understand that with higher ilvl gear my damage should be able to overcome the effects of the damage nerfs. But I wasn't entering this tier with T14H BIS gear, mainly T14N BIS so I do find the nerfs to be quite punitive to my damage. Luckily I am in a position where my guild understands what's going on with the class and that I'm still able to handle mechanics so my presence is not detrimental to the raid.
03/07/2013 10:10 PMPosted by Kursed
keep posting more feedback!


Sorry if I missed out on this, but do you want us to add more logs to our original posts or make new posts with just the WoL link and a short explanation?


Yes, keep posting things. We're not done yet. :)
03/08/2013 04:46 AMPosted by Lissanna


Sorry if I missed out on this, but do you want us to add more logs to our original posts or make new posts with just the WoL link and a short explanation?


Yes, keep posting things. We're not done yet. :)


I think he's asking: when someone who has posted before has a new log to post, would you prefer that s/he edit the original post to add the new log, or put the link in a new post and refer back to the original post?
________________________________________________
Find answers to questions about Mage mechanics in
Lhivera’s Compendium • http://lhiveras-library.com/compendium


I think he's asking: when someone who has posted before has a new log to post, would you prefer that s/he edit the original post to add the new log, or put the link in a new post and refer back to the original post?
________________________________________________
Find answers to questions about Mage mechanics in
Lhivera’s Compendium • http://lhiveras-library.com/compendium


Oh. Probably a new post that refers back to the original one, since I've already started with compiling the data off-forum (though in theory you could do both).
Lissanna, are you planning to publish your findings publicly as well as send them to the devs? It would probably be valuable for the community as a whole to discuss them as well!
________________________________________________
Find answers to questions about Mage mechanics in
Lhivera’s Compendium • http://lhiveras-library.com/compendium
Lissanna, are you planning to publish your findings publicly as well as send them to the devs? It would probably be valuable for the community as a whole to discuss them as well!
________________________________________________
Find answers to questions about Mage mechanics in
Lhivera’s Compendium • http://lhiveras-library.com/compendium


I won't have "final" results to share more publicly until probably Sunday or Monday, since taking over our project manager's job in addition to my own work has left me working longer hours and 6 full days this week - Sunday is my only day off to spend significant time going through data.
Part 1: Show me the numbers:
1) What is your current 5.2 specialization?


Arcane/Fire

2) What type of content have you run in 5.2 (5-mans, solo, LFR, 10-normal, 25-normal, etc)?

10-normal and LFR

3) Link(s) to 5.2 raid logs on your mage (even LFR logs are useful):

http://www.worldoflogs.com/reports/64pduhqh4mc0g2h3/sum/damageDone/?s=3517&e=3958

4) Did you change specializations for 5.2? If you changed specs for 5.2, what spec were you before?

Not yet, I was Arcane/Fire in 5.1

5) Is your ilevel generally around the same range as your other raid members from the logs you posted? If not, are you over-geared or under-geared compared to the other members of your raid?

Yes. I'm at 488.4, top is 490.3(DPS) bottom is 485.1 (tank)

Part 2: How are you feeling about your mage?

Horrible. My damage has never been so bad.

6) What is your average ilevel?

488.4

7) What quality of life problems are you seeing with your current specialization?

Arcane goes through Mana much too fast, even compared to the 6 stack version from 5.1. Fire is way too crit dependent to be viable at the gear level I'm at.

8) If you changed specializations, why did you change?

I always change specializations when I can't pull my weight with my preferred spec, Arcane, or if the mechanics of a fight require a specific spec that brings an ability neither of the other two bring (cauterize in 4.3)

9) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's movement damage?

It's horrible.

10) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's stand-still damage?

It's surprisingly bad right now. Near awful.

11) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's utility in raids?

What utility? Mage utility is all about control, Raids are designed to be immune to Mage crowd control abilities. That leaves only damage. So I feel it's non-existent.

12) If you could change one thing to improve your current spec, what would it be?


Make all bosses unimmune to Mage crowd control abilities.
03/07/2013 01:29 PMPosted by Lissanna
Blizzard actually has better internal tools that they don't share with us. It's not that Blizzard needs WOL reports (or a site that collects and averages WOL reports).


If Blizzard's internal tools were really better than our community generated logs, then why does Blizzard constantly make horrible balancing decisions?

4.1 They doubled the amount of damage that Ignite contributed to Combustion to offset removing the tiny amount of damage that Pyroblast's DoT contributed to combustion. Hotfixed with in 24 hours to only half the value of Ignite and still not Pyroblast DoT along with a massive crit multiplier reduction that several weeks later was partially reverted after a long twitter campaign to convince GC that his team was wrong and had massively crippled Fire Mages.


Part 1: Show me the numbers:
1) What is your current 5.2 specialization?


Frost

2) What type of content have you run in 5.2 (5-mans, solo, LFR, 10-normal, 25-normal, etc)?


10 Man ToT First couple bosses.


3) Link(s) to 5.2 raid logs on your mage (even LFR logs are useful):


http://www.worldoflogs.com/reports/l0z6g0ddcp77memb/details/11/ (night 1)
http://www.worldoflogs.com/reports/wyuod7dafcctul44/details/2/ (night 2)


4) Did you change specializations for 5.2? If you changed specs for 5.2, what spec were you before?


No I've been frost since after the major fire nerf last patch.


5) Is your ilevel generally around the same range as your other raid members from the logs you posted? If not, are you over-geared or under-geared compared to the other members of your raid?


About the same, maybe a couple ilvls higher.


Part 2: How are you feeling about your mage?
6) What is your average ilevel?


497 in those logs. 501 now.


7) What quality of life problems are you seeing with your current specialization?

Target switching is pretty weak. Other than that, I didn't feel weak the first couple bosses. Council may be a different story but haven't done enough attempts on it.

8) If you changed specializations, why did you change?

NA

9) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's movement damage?


Decent, still getting used to ice flows. I find procs are pretty frequent and with planning can dps and move ok.


10) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's stand-still damage?


Could be better, but right now it's ok, nothing overpowered, probably a bit underpowered. I do less single target damage than our enhance shaman for sure.


11) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's utility in raids?

It's pretty bad. Counterspell is on a long cd so can't be a reliable interrupter. Ring of frost isn't that great so far. Frost jaw is nigh useless too. Freeze is great utility as is deep freeze. A stun with burst dps will be awesome on council and was great on Horridon. Other than that, we bring nothing special. I like my survivability CDs. Happy with that.


12) If you could change one thing to improve your current spec, what would it be?


Fix the scaling issues with frost. It's too reliant on haste and that causes issues during haste procs and bloodlust.

Please, please, please stress the issues raiding Frost mages are having with Freeze i.e. Raiding as Frost you must now swap your rotation around from fight to fight depending on whether Freeze will be viable or not and you need to keep a list of what mobs Freeze works on and which ones it doesn't (not fun!).


I fired off a note to GC this morning explaining this issue.


I loved being able to use freeze on Horridon and on Council, it will be awesome on the Loa spirits. I get the poster's point about having to memorize, but imo it's not an issue on boss fights. People have to learn if adds are stunnable or not. Freeze is the same type of learning. Can I or can't I use it. On Horridon, I know I can use freeze on every door but the second, and only works on the little adds. That and I can use deep freeze too. I don't think that's a bad thing. Honestly, I'd rather have freeze back the way it was, but I certainly don't want it completely removed from all boss encounters.
Part 1: Show me the numbers:
1) What is your current 5.2 specialization?
Frost

2) What type of content have you run in 5.2 (5-mans, solo, LFR, 10-normal, 25-normal, etc)?
5 mans, solo dailies, lfr, 10 man

3) Link(s) to 5.2 raid logs on your mage (even LFR logs are useful):
http://www.worldoflogs.com/reports/rt-q9hxwbwy4rmnffuz/
http://www.worldoflogs.com/reports/rt-icti3h9n2577inmi/

Logs from two nights of raiding, night 1 has jin'rokh and some HoF, night two is mostly HoF

4) Did you change specializations for 5.2? If you changed specs for 5.2, what spec were you before?
I did, I was arcane before.

5) Is your ilevel generally around the same range as your other raid members from the logs you posted? If not, are you over-geared or under-geared compared to the other members of your raid?
My ilvl should be pretty on par with those I raid with

Part 2: How are you feeling about your mage?

6) What is your average ilevel?
488

7) What quality of life problems are you seeing with your current specialization?

In the larger picture (one that I thankfully will not have an issue with) is the concerns of progression mages, essentially, there is little reason to bring a mage to raid at this exact moment.

For me personally? Frost is a little boring for me to play. There's very little in regards to decision making, its hard to not do the right thing at the right time. Do you have a proc up? Yes? Use it. No? spam frost bolt. There are some things we can do like, use alter time when we have two FoF's and a brain freeze up, but really the spec feels "capped" to me. Like my dps isn't going to see a major improvement from becoming more familiar with the spec, because it's so basic. The other two spec's aren't really options at the moment either. I don't have anywhere near enough crit to make fire effective and arcane wouldn't be attractive to me if I were stone cold drunk.

8) If you changed specializations, why did you change?
I changed specializations because from what I perceived, Arcane is no longer an incredibly effective spec. It has absolutely zero movement dps, and its turret dps took a huge nosedive making the spec even more unattractive than it was (I hated the mana management that came with arcane. Micromanaging my resources is not fun for me).

9) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's movement damage?
I think mages are designed to do more damage while not moving, we have plenty of movement tools such as Blink and the new Blazing Speed (which I am a huge fan of). If you can plan for it and try to have a FoF or BF proc up when movement comes you don't suffer too much. Granted we're next to nothing compared to say ele shamans, hunters or warlocks, but I think thats how we're supposed to be. Even so I would like to see something like KJC for mages.

10) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's stand-still damage?
It's ok, I seem to be preforming fairly well as frost within my raid group on certain fights (we're definitely more of a casual group so the player skill is no where near elite and our gear level is lower than the average). The aggregate numbers scare me a bit though. I'm massively concerned about my future dps when my guild really starts to delve into ToT. I'm seeing poor mage performance all across the board dps wise (just like the rest of you). This concerns me.

11) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's utility in raids?

We have utility? Mages lack any kind of unique or especially helpful utility in my opinion. The buff we provide can easily be covered by 2 or 3 other classes. Bloodlust can come from a shaman or a hunter as well as us. We don't have any tasty candy to give out that can be used in a fight like a lock Rock, nor can we put down a nifty portal for people to use to fly across a room. We don't have anything like Ancestral Guidance or a raid cool down. (and lets face it, no one's bringing us for mage tables). There is one small consolation though, Blink. Blink allows us to circumvent certain mechanics in a fight (the amber prisons on windlord come to mind, I can just blink out of them, saving my raid a debuff)

The way I saw it was our utility, the reason to bring us, was "zomgdps", we're a non-hybrid dps class with little utility. We have little else to offer. We can't offer mana / energy / focus / rage gems to the whole raid. We don't have any kind of raid wide temporal shield. What we had was dps.

12) If you could change one thing to improve your current spec, what would it be?

In regards to all mage specs : I'd like to see damage to adjusted back so we can atleast be the middle of the pack again, or I'd like to see some serious utility added to the class. A reason to bring a mage that is unique to a mage.

In regards to my current spec : I would make frost a bit more unique, add decisions to it, or at least get some more going on. I don't have to have internal micro debates on whether to blow combustion on wait for a bigger ignite. I don't have to really monitor anything like my mana. I just spam frost bolts and use most of my damaging abilities on cd.
Blizzard actually has better internal tools that they don't share with us. It's not that Blizzard needs WOL reports (or a site that collects and averages WOL reports).


If Blizzard's internal tools were really better than our community generated logs, then why does Blizzard constantly make horrible balancing decisions?

4.1 They doubled the amount of damage that Ignite contributed to Combustion to offset removing the tiny amount of damage that Pyroblast's DoT contributed to combustion. Hotfixed with in 24 hours to only half the value of Ignite and still not Pyroblast DoT along with a massive crit multiplier reduction that several weeks later was partially reverted after a long twitter campaign to convince GC that his team was wrong and had massively crippled Fire Mages.


Because data isn't the same thing as fact. How you look at the data matters, what data you look at matters, and how you interpret the numbers matters. It's possible that things we see as huge problems are just "flavor" differences in their eyes. Numbers can't convince Blizzard that they aren't flavor differences, but are problems that prevent the class from being fun, since "fun" is a psychological construct. That's why my survey doesn't end at part 1 - it includes part 2, which measures your feelings about the class & specs. The questions about how you feel and why you feel that way is just as important as the numbers, and perhaps even more important, since Blizzard doesn't have internal tools for measuring the feelings of players.

Looking at Raidbots, mages come out low for the first few days. However, raidbots tends to behave really poorly in the first few days of a new content release. Raidbots doesn't become reliable until after week 1 has ended, and more importantly, how mages perform on Hard Mode encounters also matters, and that data doesn't start coming in until next week. This is especially true given how poorly WOL is recording fights right now - with many people reporting that WOL didn't record some of their fights thus far this week. Bad data into WOL means we have bad data to interpret on the other side.

It really wouldn't surprise me if they wait until after the end of week 2 before they make any real serious balancing changes, and any real mechanic changes are unlikely to be hotfixes but may take a month or two before we see a patch. The data collection and data analysis phase for Blizzard isn't something that moves quickly. It would be incredibly irresponsible of Blizzard to make sweeping class changes based on 2 days of data, and then have to disrupt the class again by re-nerfing if the first two days of data were wrong.

Patience is one of the most important things to have.
I posted on page 2. The logs were incomplete then due to WOL error, but they are up now:

Tortos:
http://www.worldoflogs.com/reports/3cpublu0ppa7obez/sum/damageDone/?s=8145&e=8514

Megaera:
http://www.worldoflogs.com/reports/i3567lzxclv3a4nd/sum/damageDone/?s=704&e=1156

Ji-Kun:
http://www.worldoflogs.com/reports/cogzw6xjpq4jeha0/sum/damageDone/?s=1112&e=1533

The Ji-Kun log set also includes Durumu and Primordius. I was not brought to these fights because of my low performance on earlier fights (granted this may be partly do to me and not just the class), but there is another mage in there whose highest ranking across the 3 fights is 11.
Part 1: Show me the numbers:

1) What is your current 5.2 specialization?
Frost.

2) What type of content have you run in 5.2 (5-mans, solo, LFR, 10-normal, 25-normal, etc)?
10 normal.

3) Link(s) to 5.2 raid logs on your mage (even LFR logs are useful):
Not available now. Lowest DPS of the raid on Ji'rokh kill.

4) Did you change specializations for 5.2? If you changed specs for 5.2, what spec were you before?
Was Arcane/Frost. Now Frost/Fire. Tried Fire yesterday on Horridon... wth, 70k DPS.

5) Is your ilevel generally around the same range as your other raid members from the logs you posted? If not, are you over-geared or under-geared compared to the other members of your raid?
I'm in the same range. Our DK is the new TOP DPS (he was the 2nd on 5.1, and I was the 1st).

Part 2: How are you feeling about your mage?

6) What is your average ilevel?
499

7) What quality of life problems are you seeing with your current specialization?
RNG. We lost the Pet's Freeze Fingers of Frost on bosses. The DPS is bad.

8) If you changed specializations, why did you change?
Because Arcane is now beyond useless.

9) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's movement damage?
Horrible. We lost Scorch and the reliable Fingers of Frost.

10) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's stand-still damage?
Terribad. RNG hurts a lot. Without the 2-piece from t14, I could delete my mage.

11) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's utility in raids?
Useless piece of junk.

12) If you could change one thing to improve your current spec, what would it be?
Give me a healing spec so I could forget the current useless DPS we have... ok, buff something. And fast.
Part 1: Show me the numbers:
1) What is your current 5.2 specialization? Arcane (/cry)
2) What type of content have you run in 5.2 (5-mans, solo, LFR, 10-normal, 25-normal, etc)? 10 man normal, 5 mans, solo, LFR
3) Link(s) to 5.2 raid logs on your mage (even LFR logs are useful): http://www.worldoflogs.com/reports/rt-u55sueggi048mbxu/
4) Did you change specializations for 5.2? If you changed specs for 5.2, what spec were you before? Haven't changed yet, but might have to in order to play the game with my friends
5) Is your ilevel generally around the same range as your other raid members from the logs you posted? If not, are you over-geared or under-geared compared to the other members of your raid? within 2 Ilvls of everyone

Part 2: How are you feeling about your mage?

6) What is your average ilevel? 501 now, 497 on that log
7) What quality of life problems are you seeing with your current specialization? Where to start? I have no useful AOE, I can't keep damage up during movement, my overall damage has dropped 10-20% depending on the fight, my survivability is awful, and I am now the most expendable person in my raid group because I bring nothing to the table except my charming personality =/
8) If you changed specializations, why did you change? Haven't yet, but if I do, it's because my current spec isn't playable on a level with the rest of my team....period.
9) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's movement damage? Is that a joke? It's awful.
10) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's stand-still damage? Better than moving, but still highly sub par
11) Overall, how do you feel about your current spec's utility in raids? I have no utility in raids whatsoever unless someone needs food or a port to town to reforge
12) If you could change one thing to improve your current spec, what would it be? Something has to make up for the overall damage we lost, and the ridiculous amount of damage we lose by movement. We are chained to the floor in an environment where movement is crucial. We have one DoT and it's weak compared to other classes, the spells we can cast on the run are too weak....we're just too weak period.

Now for my input. You can check my previous posts and you will find I never have complained about my chosen class except for perhaps an off-handed sarcastic comment on occasion. I have always been adaptable. I have always been patient. I love the new content but in the current state I fear I will never see it outside of LFR. When other classes and specs were weak, I always had empathy and never once was happy that they had issues.

I understand why we were nerfed so hard. I understand the scorch weaving thing was not intended, and I didn't use it...never could seem to work it properly so I just dumped stacks like a good boy, and it worked just fine. I was at the bottom sometimes, middle sometimes, and top smetimes (always depending on movement and/or AOE.) So I feel like a child being punished harshly for something I didn't do. I realize that's over simplistic but that's exactly how I feel.

I have a nasty case of Systemic Lupus and this is how I spend my days and evenings. It's also why I play arcane in a world of "lolZ u play a 2 button spamz spek luLz". Because I could do well with it and contribute to my raid team's success. If nothing else, I brought very good single target damage to a fight in a raid tier where single target low movement fights are a rare thing. Now the only thing I can do well is mechanics. In a raid where there are some hard DPS checks, it's not enough anymore. I am doing everything in my power and I'm being carried. Please don't force me to change specs, because I have played all 3 and I suck at the other 2.

I would just like to feel useful again, that's all.

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