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  1. #1

    Mage Viability throughout the ages (pvp & pve)

    Without any intention of trolling or bashing (I have a mage alt myself), could someone tell me whether there exists a single tier/season in which mages (any spec) were not amongst the top5 in competitive raiding or pvping? Personally I ve played through all of them and I cant remember such a time exists. In fact, I had such a discussion with a couple of guildmates recently and noone was able to remember any.
    If this is so, why do you believe this is happening?

  2. #2
    Top5 in Vanilla was more than 50% of all the possibilities. There were only 8 classes for each faction then with three healers and a tank for PvE. So for mages to not be Top5 in Vanilla is impossible. For PvP in Vanilla, Mages did quite well. Polymorph lasted quite a long time... I think Top3 would be more appropriate for Vanilla. In MC and BWL, Rogues were always top dps, unless they really sucked. Warlocks were best on trash for DPS.

  3. #3
    There was a part of BC we'd pretty much get invited to raid, drop our food and throw out our buffs and then /kick (Buffs used to remain even if someone left the raid back then)

    Obviously I'm overdoing it here. But it was pretty bad.

  4. #4
    Warchief Kuni Zyrekai's Avatar
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    Sunwell was pretty bad for us. A combination of warlock synergy with spriest and the fact that our -cast time on main nuke talents lowered coefficients by 10% if you took them kinda killed us off except for food. Our buff was even covered by the zone-wide buff.

  5. #5
    Dreadlord joepesci's Avatar
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    I think in PvP the mage was or is the class that is always positioned a little bit below the FOTM title holders. This is the best spot there is, always flying under the nerfbat radar despite being borderline overpowered. They also have one of the most amazing PvP spells: Blink. A 15 sec stun trinket which is immune to nerfs... seriously?

    I don't think mages had a season where they were not Glad viable, though I'm no mage expert. Just trying a mage myself now, for the very first time... lvl 24 currently.

  6. #6
    Stood in the Fire
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    Quote Originally Posted by joepesci View Post
    I think in PvP the mage was or is the class that is always positioned a little bit below the FOTM title holders. This is the best spot there is, always flying under the nerfbat radar despite being borderline overpowered. They also have one of the most amazing PvP spells: Blink. A 15 sec stun trinket which is immune to nerfs... seriously?

    I don't think mages had a season where they were not Glad viable, though I'm no mage expert. Just trying a mage myself now, for the very first time... lvl 24 currently.
    ^ This, maybe they were weak S3 or S4. I think, it's been far too long for my memory lol.
    Quote Originally Posted by Surreal
    grim toll is the worst trinket you could get for survival. Hands down Meteorite wheat stone is better than it.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by joepesci View Post
    I think in PvP the mage was or is the class that is always positioned a little bit below the FOTM title holders. This is the best spot there is, always flying under the nerfbat radar despite being borderline overpowered. They also have one of the most amazing PvP spells: Blink. A 15 sec stun trinket which is immune to nerfs... seriously?
    Under the radar my butt they've been the tippy top of the DPS meters since Wrath at least!

    They just never get nerfed because Mages getting nerfed is one of the signs of the Apocalypse.
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  8. #8
    Dreadlord Zenny's Avatar
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    PvE at least mages were not so hot pre-4.1.

  9. #9
    Sunwell wasn't a great time and before they fixed Fire's punishing mana costs T11 was pretty bad. Other than that I can't think of a time where mages weren't Top 3-5.

  10. #10
    Blademaster Netheris2k's Avatar
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    I was a fire mage in vanilla (yeah, in mc and bwl) and i was the first one in my raid that got damage meters back then...and i was always...ALWAYS #1. (yes even on fire immune bosses where i just used frostbolt...). but i was the only caster of my raid who focussed on +dmg on items back then, and damage meters wasn't that accurate to begin with. there was also no freaking way you could outdps a t2 equipped fire mage in AQ (remember ignite stacking ).

    For BC, i played pure arcane the whole time and got solid numbers, as did the other mages in our raid.
    and here also come my only good pvp memories: 2v2 Arena at the beginning of season 1: 3 min mage, 1hit wonder... lame, but fun.

    Can't say much about wotlk, because i was undergeared about the whole time i spent in that addon.
    Same thing in cata....

    And now...i'm really glad that i expierienced a short time of destroying every other class EVEN THOUGH i'm still undergeared compared to the other dds in my raid.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Zenny View Post
    PvE at least mages were not so hot pre-4.1.
    This.
    In the very beginning of Cata mages were forced to go Fire, and we had horrible mana issues along with ignite munching problems causing our combustions to almost be 100% random. Living bomb ticks that crit overwrote other ignites so if you had a big ignite you had to pray that in the time you took to hit combustion it didn't get overwrote.

  12. #12
    I don't really want to discuss Vanilla because it was overall crap all around in terms of balance (both PvE and PvP), so I'll start with TBC.

    Mages were okay to good all throughout TBC in regards to PvP. We were well represented in 2s and 3s, and always in Glad contention. However, that time was not because of the depth or strength of the class, it was the strength of the two classes we played with, aka Rogues and Priests. RMP, RM, and MP were Glad comps because the Rogue and Priest were simply the top classes in terms of healing and DPS in TBC. We brought trash buffs and reliable CC through Polymorph and Frostbite. Warlocks and Druids (Resto, the other two specs were for the lols) simply dominated us, that much can't be denied. However, the arms race that has essentially ramped up every single class today started between Warriors and Mages. We had the tools to keep them at bay, and they had gap closers. A solo Warrior really couldn't deal with a Mage in these times, which is why most classes have ways to catch us today. In terms of PvE...well, our bonuses were bleh outside of T5, and our spells simply didn't scale well due to some programming bugs and terrible design choices later on (look at the T6 setbonuses for example: we got 5% increased damage to our nukes, Warlocks got 6%).

    WotLK really addressed most of our problems (and I slightly wish the game had stayed at that point), in both aspects of the game. We were good at the start of the expansion due to our specs being exploitable (FFB double dipping, Arcane Shatter combos, and the such). We stayed mid-tier in T8 since our bonus was completely RNG, and we didn't scale that well...yet. With the ilvl inflation in T9, this is when our specs took over. Arcane dominated T9 then Fire far and away raped with high levels of Crit (my personal Fireball at the time was around 85% Crit). The true game change in PvP was Deep Freeze. It let us move away from Rogues a bit in terms of viability, and it let us bring dominance back over Warlocks. We were good in this expansion generally.

    Cata...what's there to say about Cata? We were good in PvE as one spec and only because of one trinket. We only took over in T13, again, due to bonuses and scaling...along with pointless AoE cleaving as Fire. In PvP we were broken at the start (having to stack Crit to be good), but then they fixed our scaling and we went back to being Glad viable with good synergy (and the removal of TW from arena).

    Overall we've been good for a long duration, but it was only in WotLK that it was due to our own class abilities, and not from the skills and strengths of other classes.

  13. #13
    Warchief Akraen's Avatar
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    Tier 5 2pc + Arcane Blast was unbeatable by any class, and it lasted until the release of Sunwell. Most mages I knew did it wrong, though. The best gemmed for intellect (remember, this was the pre-stat simplification, int gemming was for mana).

  14. #14
    Epic! Lei Shi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Swizzle-I View Post
    Cata...what's there to say about Cata? We were good in PvE as one spec and only because of one trinket.
    Balancing a spec around a nearly unobtainable trinket was a massive failure of Cata, wonder what they're balancing it around this time.

  15. #15
    The Lightbringer Belize's Avatar
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    There was that really awkward time period about a month before the Cata patch during ICC where fire dominated all the way up to Saurfang. I remember pulling in the 11K+ in mostly normal ICC 10 and lower gear.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by I-Swizzle-I View Post
    Cata...what's there to say about Cata? We were good in PvE as one spec and only because of one trinket. We only took over in T13, again, due to bonuses and scaling...along with pointless AoE cleaving as Fire. In PvP we were broken at the start (having to stack Crit to be good), but then they fixed our scaling and we went back to being Glad viable with good synergy (and the removal of TW from arena).
    i have honestly no clue what are u talking about... arcane was amazing untill end of firelands even without sinestra trinket and fire was just plain op in dragonsoul (mained a mage all the way thru cata)
    Last edited by Lord Swizzlington; 2013-02-27 at 03:37 PM.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by vamonos View Post
    i have honestly no clue what are u talking about... arcane was amazing untill end of firelands even without sinestra trinket and fire was just plain op in dragonsoul (mained a mage all the way thru cata)
    I mained a Mage all the way from the end of Vanilla, it really wasn't a good time through Firelands.Yes, Arcane was powerful, but ONLY if you had SoW. If you didn't, you were mid-pack (you could push higher depending on the gear of the rest of your raid). The fights outside of Alysrazor really didn't favor us until they were nerfed later on. Lastly, yeah I'm well aware that Fire took over in T13, but that's because you could literally abuse Combustion spreading due to the set bonus on nearly every fight. We weren't balanced, we just had mechanics that were broken in the tiers they were implemented in.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by I-Swizzle-I View Post
    I mained a Mage all the way from the end of Vanilla, it really wasn't a good time through Firelands.Yes, Arcane was powerful, but ONLY if you had SoW. If you didn't, you were mid-pack (you could push higher depending on the gear of the rest of your raid). The fights outside of Alysrazor really didn't favor us until they were nerfed later on. Lastly, yeah I'm well aware that Fire took over in T13, but that's because you could literally abuse Combustion spreading due to the set bonus on nearly every fight. We weren't balanced, we just had mechanics that were broken in the tiers they were implemented in.
    well i was topping damage meters in my guild (just casual 6/7hc) all the way in firelands with much worse gear than the rest and my trinkets were moonwell chalise and therealions mirror.. never had as much fun with arcane as in firelands.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by FiL134 View Post
    Without any intention of trolling or bashing (I have a mage alt myself), could someone tell me whether there exists a single tier/season in which mages (any spec) were not amongst the top5 in competitive raiding or pvping? Personally I ve played through all of them and I cant remember such a time exists. In fact, I had such a discussion with a couple of guildmates recently and noone was able to remember any.
    If this is so, why do you believe this is happening?
    Not gonna touch on PvP, I don't PvP, I'm not good at it (yes, even on my supposedly uber OP mage, I just suck) but Mages *should* damn well be in the Top 5 in PvE/raiding. Mages are pure dps classes, they can't do anything other than dps so they *have* to be among the best at doing it. We can't help our raid in any other way, we can't replace a healer or a tank if someone has to drop or can't make the raid, so we have to make up for it by doing what we do well.

    That's the biggest issue I have with the whole hybrid business and whining about Mages being top dps. Why should we suck at the only thing we *can* do? All pure dps classes - rogue, mage, warlock, hunter - should be the top dps, with the hybrids following closely behind.

    If they want all dps classes to be - theoretically - equal they have to make the pure dps classes into hybrids, give mages a heal spec, rogues a tank spec etc.
    There have been multiple times when we had to cancel a raid because we didn't have enough tanks or healers but easily enough dps and there just was nothing I could do because I couldn't switch to a heal-spec and fill that spot.

  20. #20
    High Overlord Sektorx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I-Swizzle-I View Post
    I mained a Mage all the way from the end of Vanilla, it really wasn't a good time through Firelands.Yes, Arcane was powerful, but ONLY if you had SoW. If you didn't, you were mid-pack (you could push higher depending on the gear of the rest of your raid). The fights outside of Alysrazor really didn't favor us until they were nerfed later on. Lastly, yeah I'm well aware that Fire took over in T13, but that's because you could literally abuse Combustion spreading due to the set bonus on nearly every fight. We weren't balanced, we just had mechanics that were broken in the tiers they were implemented in.
    I did not have SoW and have managed to get top 200 ranks on WoL throughout heroic Firelands. Another guild from my guild at the time managed to do the same. Trick was not to go for 1764 haste but to go all out mastery and ignore haste, despite what was being avocated on these forums here.
    Yes Shard of Woe was unbelievably strong, but it certainly was not needed to beat the rogues/shadowpriests/warlocks that tried to push people off the meters.

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