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Author Topic: WOW - Mage - Frost or Fire?  (Read 1705 times)
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greeneggsnham
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« on: February 08, 2005, 06:15:55 PM »

Just kind a request for input on the frost/fire mage builds.

I at lvl 21 with my gnome mage, been working on a fire/arcane build. All my points have been going to the fire tree (imp.fb, stun, and now pyro) but I'm just not wow'd. Part of the problem (IMO) is that I'm utterly disappointed in pyro. Yes, I'm working toward the PoM/pyro combo (it's good for PVP and PVE) but it really does nothing for the fire mage in terms of DPS or utility.... and fire is all about the DPS, imo. Pyro is not flexible. It's an opener or leader after sheeping, or midbattle DPS boost with PoM.

Looking further up the fire tree, Blast wave is good, but.... Cold snap is better. Imp Cone of Cold. Larger radius nova..... Improved Blizzard. Slow 'em to a crawl AND deal AoE.

Frost just seems so darn useful. As a mage, your frost nova is your best friend. I'd give the frikin' spell a pet name if I could, we're that close. And a lot of time soloing I'm starting a pull using frostbolt to slow the target. There just seems so much more utility in frost, not to mention survivability. Pull go bad and get swarmed? Nova in recharge? Coldsnap/Nova/Blink run run live.

As you can tell by this post, I'm pretty much decided for respecting to a frost build at some point. Any good recomendations on when? Caveats for the frosty mage? Any firey mages want to show me the light at the end of the tunnel?

BTW, my main is on a pve (Gilneas) and my wife and I almost always party up (dwarven pally, same lvl) but I do solo (usually stay within a 1/2 level of her char). So I almost always have a tank I'm partied with, but I do solo some. Frost is still good in party environ even though it has less DPS than fire, right?
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namatoki
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« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2005, 06:29:08 PM »

I have a 60 gnome mage on Cenarius (named Zweedree) and I leveled to 60 using mostly arcane with a little fire.  Basically, I got everything in arcane except for wands and dampen magic.  Arcane power is really nice for boosting DPS with an extra cost to your spells.  In fire, I got the stun, improved fire blast and pyro.  I grouped with my brother quite a bit (he's a human paladin) and even solo, I got by well with this build.

I switched to frost after going through all the high level instances (BRD, Scholomance, Stratholme, and lower/upper BRS).  Yes, frost ups your survivability quite a bit.  But I do notice the drop in DPS.  I can still do well, you have to change your playstyle a bit for frost.  My current build is mostly frost with a bit of arcane (to get evocation).

One note about stun is that mobs go immune to stun after 3 stuns.  So fire mages need to drop the stun talent if they go on raids.  Because rogues will get upset if they can't stun the mob you stunned.

Frost is still great in groups because slowing movement rates of AOE pulls helps keep the other mages and priests alive.

Hope that helps!
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Ender
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« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2005, 02:25:29 PM »

I have my frost mage up to 47 on a pvp server.  I went to 38 as an arcane/fire before the switch.  It took about 5 levels before I got used to the new playstyle and synergies but now I would NEVER change in a pvp environment.  Ice gives too many escape hatches for the emergency situation.  Iceblocks, ice barriers, novas, great AoE (my CoC crits for 600ish now), and snare-city.  I use the lvl 1 frost bolt to have a 1 sec cast time bolt on running alliances.  Then I can nuke pretty hard, it is a lower dps than fire, that can be alleviated by +frost damage items.  The bolt gets the full benefit as it had a 3 sec cast time before the talent took off .5 a sec.  Also with the 15% reduction in mana cost that is like having a 15% larger mana pool (if you only use frost spells like me).  Take less int for some extra frost damage, remember the frost damage is addded before the crit is calculated, doubling your +damage items on crits.  

Stay with arcane/fire until 38ish.  Then make the switch when you are able to really take advantage of the later frost talents.  After a few levels you will appreciate the majesty of frost.
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GGMark
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« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2005, 03:54:29 PM »

Fire is a huge aggro in groups.  I dont play a mage, but the ones that I have talked to, have told me they went with frost because of the lowering in aggro.
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Scott
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« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2005, 05:45:52 PM »

Quote
Fire is a huge aggro in groups. I dont play a mage, but the ones that I have talked to, have told me they went with frost because of the lowering in aggro.

Not really true.  Both fire and frost can draw aggro, you just need to be a smart mage.  The problem with frost, is that while you do less damage per hit, most of the frost builds are built on trying to get a critical hit in.  Frost mages get more critical hits then fire mages, so your aggro management becomes a bit harder.  You really don't want that huge critical hit to start a fight in a group, but it could happen.  I think fire is a lot easier to manage aggro with.

I'm mostly arcane now, with some fire.  Not sure I'll switch to ice.  Maybe at some point.  I've taken the range enhancement with fire, increased my fire blast speed one spot, increased crit damage, and gotten pyroblast just recently (at level 38).  I think I'm done with fire at that point.  Arcane looks much better.

My current though is to eventually open with fireball, fireball, presense of mind (instant spell), pyroblast, and then decide.  That should be a mostly dead mob.

The one mage talent you should get  very soon is arcane explosion.  Probably the best spell we have.
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programmerbob
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« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2005, 06:52:59 PM »

I'm going to go arcane/ice, to increase the quality of frost nova and other things that allow me to survive.

I went arcane because of the instant AOE that arcane explosion provides, want to team up with my priest roommate, and put PW:Shield on me and then I'll collect a buttload of guys and annihilate them.
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Calvin
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« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2005, 08:04:32 PM »

Quote from: "Scott"
Quote
Fire is a huge aggro in groups. I dont play a mage, but the ones that I have talked to, have told me they went with frost because of the lowering in aggro.

Not really true.  Both fire and frost can draw aggro, you just need to be a smart mage.  The problem with frost, is that while you do less damage per hit, most of the frost builds are built on trying to get a critical hit in.  Frost mages get more critical hits then fire mages, so your aggro management becomes a bit harder.  You really don't want that huge critical hit to start a fight in a group, but it could happen.  I think fire is a lot easier to manage aggro with.

I'm mostly arcane now, with some fire.  Not sure I'll switch to ice.  Maybe at some point.  I've taken the range enhancement with fire, increased my fire blast speed one spot, increased crit damage, and gotten pyroblast just recently (at level 38).  I think I'm done with fire at that point.  Arcane looks much better.

My current though is to eventually open with fireball, fireball, presense of mind (instant spell), pyroblast, and then decide.  That should be a mostly dead mob.

The one mage talent you should get  very soon is arcane explosion.  Probably the best spell we have.


No, its not. Its not probably the best spell we have, it is hands  down the best mage spell in teh game, and possibly the single most useful spell in the entire game in high level instances thats not some variation of "heal".
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Ender
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« Reply #7 on: February 12, 2005, 02:45:51 AM »

If you are frost you don't need PoM.  The only spell that would be worth using it for would be poly but then it would be very situational.  If you are going frost you need either 33 or 40.   My build is 40 and so far pvp has been my forte.  Soloing is great, but frost really shines on a pvp server.  

IAE is great, i had it for 10+ levels and it took quite a bit to get used to not having.  Once I started to use my blizz, nova, CoC, blink, blizz combo I haven't missed it as much.  I just can't cast arcane spells when i get a 15% reduction on frost.  That is why i decided if I'm going frost to go all frost.  

-Ender
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Scott
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« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2005, 03:01:08 PM »

How do you equal the output of improved arcane explosion with frost though Ender?  I've been in groups where the output of arcane explosion has saved us in bad pulls.  It just is incredible for what it does.  With the frost spells, how does that work?
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Ender
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« Reply #9 on: February 19, 2005, 09:24:18 PM »

My nova/cone of cold combo crits everything for 800ish now.  I crit 50% of the time with CoC.  Cold snap and i can do it again.  What I'll do is blizz, nova, coc, blink back, blizzard, nova coc.  If needed I can throw in a third nova-coc with my cold snap.  By that point i have to ice block if anyone is left.  At 50 that combo is working just fine.  The problem with being a frost mage and getting IAE is that the spell is relatively more expensive, 15% more expensive.  Very inefficient to use.
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