I come back from my small trip and already there is some more tweaks to the Mage class in WotLK. The new WotLK Beta Build 8770 is out, and they were posted again by MMO-Champion.com a couple days ago, so it may be old news to you. If you haven’t taken a look at it yet, here they are, and my thoughts on the new changes.
- Arcane Shielding (Tier 4) now decreases the mana lost per point of damage taken when Mana Shield is active by 17/33%. (Previously was 10/20%)
- Improved Counterspell (Tier 4) now has a 100% chance to silence the target for 2/4 secs. (Previously was a 50/100% chance to silence the target for 4 secs.)
- Torment the Weak (Tier 4) is a new 3 point talent. It increases damage done to slowed targets by 2/4/6%.
- Incanter’s Absorption moved to Tier 7.
- Spell Power moved to Tier 10.
- Impact (Tier 3) has been changed to give your damaging spells a 4/7/10% chance to stun the target for 2 secs. (Previously was a 5 point talent 2/4/6/8/10% and only worked on fire spells)
- Molten Shields (Tier 4) now includes both Fire Ward and Frost Ward, and now increases chance to reflect the incoming spell by 15/30%. (Previously only worked on Fire Ward and was 10/20%)
- Fiery Payback (Tier 8 ) changed to include all damage, and now increases the cooldown of pyroblast by 2.5/5 secs when below 35% health. (Previously only worked on physical and fire damage, and did not increase cooldown time)
- Firestarter (Tier 9) is now a 2 point talent and was changed to 50/100% chance to make your next Flamestrike instant cast. (Previously was 15/30/45% and a 3 point talent)
- Burnout (Tier 10) has been increased to 10/20/30/40/50% critical damage bonus to all fire spells. (Previously 5/10/15/20/25%)
- Living Bomb (Tier 11) has been completely changed and now the target becomes a Living Bomb, taking 612 Fire damage over 12 seconds. After 12 seconds or when the spell is dispelled, the target explodes dealing 306 Fire damage to all enemies within 10 yards and knocking all targets up in the air. This spell can only affect one target at a time.
- Frost Warding (Tier 1) has been changed and now increases the armor and resistances given by your Frost Armor and Ice Armor spells by 25/50%. In addition, gives your Frost Ward and Fire Ward a 15/30% chance to negate the warded damage spell and restore mana equal to the damage caused. (Previously was 15/30% increase to resistances)
- Improved Frost Nova (Tier 2) has been replaced with Ice Floes (Was Tier 6) and reduces the cooldown of your Frost Nova, Cone of Cold, Ice Block and Icy Veins spells by 7/14/20%.
- Arctic Reach (Tier 4) now includes the spell Deep Freeze.
- Frost Channeling (Tier 4) now reduces the mana cost of all spells by 4/7/10%. (Previously only affected frost spells and was 5/10/15%)
- Cold as Ice (Tier 6) is a 2 point talent and replaces Ice Floes. It reduces the cooldown of your Cold Snap, Ice Barrier, Deep Freeze and Summon Water Elemental spells by 10/20%. Requires Cold Snap.
- Winter’s Chill (Tier 6) is now a 3 point talent and gives your frost spells a 33/66/100% chance to apply the winter’s chill effect. increases the chance Arcane, Fire and Frost spells will critically hit the target by 2% for 15 seconds. Stacks up to 5 times.
- Shattered Barrier (Tier 7) now gives your Ice Barrier spell a 50/100% chance to freeze all enemies within 10 yds for 8 seconds when it is destroyed. Requires Ice Barrier.
- Empowered Frostbolt (Tier 8 ) changed to a 2 point talent and now increases the damage of your Frostbolt spell by an amount equal to 5/10% of your spell power and increases the critical strike chance by an additional 2/4%.
- Fingers of Frost (Tier 8 ) now works on 2 frost spells. (Previously only affected the first one)
- Improved Water Elemental (Tier 9) changed to restore mana to all party or raid members an amount equal to 1/2/3% of their total mana every 5 secs. (Previously health was restored)
- Deep Freeze (Tier 11) is now Instant Cast. (Previously had a 1.5sec cast time)
Again there is also an upgraded version of the Mage Talent Tree here. It is up to date with the current WotLK 8770 Beta Build.
Finally Arcane Mages get an actual use for Slow. It is a nice boost for PvP, but for PvE, I’m not too sure on how many bosses are affected by Slow. If bosses can be affected by Slow, then this would be a nice boost for Arcane Mages in PvE, though it would cost quite a bit to put up the Slow debuff over and over again.
For Fire Mages, they will get an increase in AoE damage with the change in Firestarter. With a 100% chance to get an instant cast Flamestrike whenever you cast Blast Wave or Dragon’s Breath, that is a lot of potential damage. DB > FS > BW > FS all in less than 6 seconds. Burnout also gets another buff, increasing a Fire Mages damage even more. Also the new Living Bomb design has taken a page out of the book of skills from Baron Geddon in Molten Core.
For Frosties, we get buffs all around. Fingers of Frost, now affects the next two frost spells instead of one. This would up our DPS a lot, pretty much giving us a guaranteed crits on the next two frost spells with Shatter. Improved Water Elemental now returns mana instead of health would be a huge benefit for the entire raid. 3% mana every 5 seconds, for 60 seconds. That would return 36% of your mana if the Water Elemental were to stay alive for the entire duration, and you could Cold Snap and resummon again for another 36%. Deep Freeze being an instant cast is a huge PvP buff, especially with the damage still on it. This makes frost still the spec to be for PvP.
Let’s not forget about the Elementalists out there now, especially with the buffs they are getting in WotLK. Most of all the talents in all three trees now effect all school of Mage magic. I haven’t looked too much into an Elementalist spec yet, but I could see Frostfire Bolt being a very powerful spell given all the right talents. It could have a 10% chance to stun AND 15% chance to freeze the target. And I haven’t even mention the talents further down the trees yet… Too good.