1. #1
    High Overlord Aqacia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009

    Tips for Mage in Challenge Mode

    I'm starting with Challenge mode this Sunday with my guild and I was wondering if there's something you should know as a mage when you go challange mode.

    Some things I've understood so far is that firstly, you dont need invis pots since we have invisibility spell.
    Secoundly, getting Incanter's Ward over RoP och Invocation is neccesary sicne you dont have time to use those and you do take dmg all the time meaning you will get full effect of it.
    Thirdly, going for frost with arcance as offspec for fights where you stand still is the way to go. In frost, you want to be using Glyph of Water Elemental to keep it moving with you.

    Are there anything else I should know? Thanks alot

    (PS I've ofcourse watched guides on how to do the gold challenge modes on youtube. Aftermath had some nice videos)

  2. #2
    Spam that Ring of Frost.
    Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
    ´So.. sorry to bring this up but..you know that .."thing" (Med'an).. is that "thing" cannon still?
    ...as much have some have wished otherwise, yes. (Loreology)

    RPG is non-canon by default. (MickyNeilson)

  3. #3
    High Overlord Aqacia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    As a interrupt/millisecound stun I guess you mean with Ring of Frost? Since you dont really have time to CC mobs when you pull packs in Challenge mode?

  4. #4
    You throw it in with the AoE stun rotation your group is using for large packs.
    Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
    ´So.. sorry to bring this up but..you know that .."thing" (Med'an).. is that "thing" cannon still?
    ...as much have some have wished otherwise, yes. (Loreology)

    RPG is non-canon by default. (MickyNeilson)

  5. #5
    Frost and frost. and get frost as OS

    I did 2 challenge modes so far, both gold, used invocation - it helps the healer with mana management, helps you with the best sp buff and you always have ~5sec to cast it, dw worry about it.
    Also - stack haste, I used ice lance glyph for more aoe (water elemental and evocation glyphs also)
    You will have frost orb for almost every single big aoe pack (5+mobs) - dont be shy to use it, it benefits the group more to use it on trash than on boss

    That is on top of my head

    ps. Arcane might be good for some fights, but unless you use it with evocation - respecing and getting enough mana to actualy do better dmg than frost is not worth it the time

  6. #6
    I'm 9/9 (#3 mage US) and our group has been selling gold CM carries for a while now.

    You will never spec anything but frost.

    You will never switch specs midway through a dungeon as you won't have time since you will lose the time to switch, and the time to regain mana / rebuff.

    You should switch bombs frequently (if your UI doesn't bug out from glyph taint). NT for most bosses, frost bomb for trash.

    Living bomb with fire blast glyph -is- viable but harder to shatter effectively with.

    /cast [@targettarget] ice ward - free shatter when cast targeting a mob being tanked by your tank.

    Don't pet nova / frost nova when your tank is kiting or melee will hate you as they will be instantly gibbed.

    Glyph deep freeze and use on cooldown with most trash. Evocation glyph / heal is relatively useless.

    Scorch is the go-to mobility talent. You -can- get away with POM in a few dungeons or on bosses if you can switch it out quickly, but scorch is generally better.

    Don't concern yourself with max invocation buff uptime. There are times it is better to do a trash pull or portion of a boss without it. You can get away with rune of power on some bosses but very rarely on trash.

    Ring of frost is overrated. While it is certainly useful on many trash pulls, most of the time you're better off killing the trash faster rather than trying to ring it. Ice ward is a free shatter and is a very high damage increase.

    I spam mastery gem for CMs. Essentially, arcane gemming is what is best for CMs, as you will gain mastery's benefit much more frequently on trash than you would in a raid.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by otyknip View Post
    ps. Arcane might be good for some fights, but unless you use it with evocation - respecing and getting enough mana to actualy do better dmg than frost is not worth it the time
    I agree.

    Frost's total and complete and utter dominance in Challenge mode is a little talked about issue right now. But it is a huge issue for the class.

    Challenge modes in general are a perfect place to see some of the more blatant glaring imbalances between the specs. I have long tried to argue to give Arcane something which gives it more battle control.

    Slow is just so pathetically useless its not even worth mentioning. Which basically gives Arcane just its cleave through ABr, which is just so little to bring to the table when compared to frost. Frost can burst just as hard, if not harder and for AoE (petnova right when bomb is about to pop with a full blizz + orb going) just tears through things.

    Even Fire's DB is more useful, for the mass stun.

    Challenge modes lay out plain to see some of the unspoken failures of mage spec design.
    "There are very few who can claim what he can. There are even fewer who can prove it like he can. There are even less that can match him, but all will no doubt accept what he is, and what he can do. The Highlord is for sure one of a kind. A true Master of the Arcane arts. It would be best for you to listen."
    - Lady Nåabi of the Immortalis, former Guild Executor, former Raid Lead.

  8. #8
    I agree with Citrique, but not from a person "just starting challenge modes" point of view. If you're going for world first best times in an amazing group, his advice is priceless. If you are going to get golds for gear, maybe not so much. I also have 9/9 golds, but I went for gear and not for times.

    There are times arcane shines and might be needed to zerg bosses. There is time to switch specs and get mana back. Lilian Voss sticks out in my head. Hunter went bm, I went arcane, healer and tank went full dps, to zerg the boss before the soul came out, and we still barely made it (everyone was 90k+). The 10 seconds it takes to switch specs is less time than it takes to kill the second boss of the encounter.

    Ring of frost is amazing. A well timed ring can interupt multiple casts from mobs in Scarlett Monastaries and it can give the healer an extra second or two to get tanks topped on huge aoe pulls. It can also help clump adds on large pulls to better aoe.

    Glyph cone of cold and use it on cooldown during aoe.

    If tank is dying and there is no melee, pet freeze can be invaluable to assist kiting while that tank gets his hp back.

    Watch strats before going in the dungeon to see how to do the pulls. Turn the dungeon on normal and do a run through with the group with your strat so everyone knows what to expect.

    Don't be frustrated if the first couple of attempts don't go well. It may take the tank and heals a few to figure out cooldown usage. I watched the main tank of a 14/16 hm guild die in seconds on his first couple of attempts in Jade Serpent (one of the easier dungeons). Challenge modes take some getting used to.

    It basically comes down to practice. Start on the easier challenge modes first so that your group can adjust to the added difficulty of challenge modes. The first dungeon or two might take many attempts, but after your group gets comfortable with the higher level of play and with each other, they become rather easy.

  9. #9
    Some really good advice in this thread! I have only done a few CM with some guys in the guild, but we are really having a lot of fun. I think we have all bronze right now from the few we tried, just shy of silvers on a few. I don't like having to skip whole packs with invis potions (Scarlet Halls) because inevitably someone always gets seen somehow. But anyway, I found frost to be overall the best toolkit to start feeling your way through. Frost bomb, a well placed Freeze and then a glyphed CoC will definitely spike your dmg on large trash packs.

    I can't seem to live without Water Elemental Glyph, ice lance and I swap CoC and Evocation depending. I like evocation because you can take a brush, call out that you are going to invo and take some load off the healer. I haven't tried arcane in any of them yet, but I would definitely want to cherry pick fights with that knowing you will have very little to no movement.

    Especially what Dementor said though: don't get frustrated. Think original Burning Crusade Heroics with a timer. Actually, Challenge Modes bring back nightmares of Heroic Shattered Halls :S

  10. #10
    If your plan with RoF is to intentionally break and freeze mobs again after a few seconds then that is infact going to be rather deadly on larger packs since it will reset and sync all of the mobs swing timers.

  11. #11
    Ring is most useful in Stormstout Brewery, Scholomance and Gate. Those three are where our tank kites things the most often at least. It's okay in Siege and on the somewhat nasty caster trash around the second boss in Scarlet Halls, or the caster trash in the cathedral in SM. Rest ice ward is better. Ice ward becomes stronger the less melee you have as well, since you can shatter with impunity if your group has none as there's no risk of people getting randomly hit in the face for 300K by rooted mobs if the tank wasn't in melee.

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