I just thought i would run through the mage talents for MoP, from a pure PVE perspective, to see if there would really be a "cookie cutter" mage spec.
So,here goes, constructive criticism is welcome if i got something wrong.
Level 15 - Ring of Frost / Ice Ward / Frostjaw
Non of these relate to a DPS increase, all for utility and all situational, up to the player, or encounter.
Level 30 - Mana Shield / Blazing Speed / Ice Barrier
No major DPS increase, Blazing speed is now an on use spell which could be good for those sticky situations, however, Ice barrier now stops push back effects while casting, therefore also usefull for moments in a fight when you know some AoE is coming your way. Basically, up to the player.
Level 45 - Presence of Mind / Scorch / Arcane Flows
Here we get some choice, scorch would be taken by fire mages (Presumably), then the choice comes between PoM and AF (bring back the days of PoM Pyro maybe !), i predict most arcane mages taking AF to help with the lack of movement allowance in the rotation, however, no direct DPS boost here either.
Level 60 - Greater Invisibility / Cauterize / Cold Snap
From a pure PvE perspective, Cold snap would probably not even be taken by PVE Frost mages due to it not resetting icy veins or deep freeze (even though it seems they have taken away the damaging effect on non stunnable targets), so between Cauterize and Invisibility, they are both for the "Oh shit" moments, Invisibility is now instant without further talents, so a good instant threat dump and dot removal if needed, however cauterize is also extremely useful and your healers will probably thank you for it, so, either one is up to the player.
Level 75 - Blast Wave / Dragons Breath / Slow
Here we have 2 spells that actually do damage, Blast wave and Dragons Breath, on a 15 and 20 second CD, respectively. So they cant fit a common use in your AoE rotation, however to start it off it could be useful. Dragons breath can also be used for a quick CC if your in a hurry, however, non of them would increase your DPS on your standard boss.
Now slow is nice for your single target kiting, but not much use otherwise, in a raid setting. Also on a side note, no more Torment of the Weak (This feels like a stab to the kidney)
Level 90 - Sickly polymorph / Heavy Polymorph / Double Polymorph
Blizz managed to give us mages some new spells we already have ! I do actually like these new versions though, so no hating.
Basically, i personally dont think your PVE mage will be taking Sickly polymorph, as the CC's are usually done before any damage is going out, so no need for that. It comes down to Heavy, or double, these are pretty much down to the player again, Double polymorph will only be needed in a group that is lacking the needed CC, and will mostly not be needed in a raid environment, useful in dungeons though. Heavy poly morph will probably be the choice for the PvE mage, im sure you are all aware of the annoying melee that aoe our precious livestock (and the occasional caster), so a stun after it breaks would be welcome.
So, overall for the Mage, there isnt really any "talents" that must be taken, and none that would relate to a direct DPS increase. So, i feel like this new system is working for the Mage, and eliminating the "cookie cutter" spec for us.