1. #1

    The nature and limits of arcane magic - Can the arcane control the elements?

    What exactly are the limits of the arcana, within the lore of World of Warcraft? What can it do -- and what can't it do, exactly?

    1. What exactly allows arcane magic to control Fire and Frost? How does the process work exactly? This has never been explained well in the lore -- why only those two elements? Can they control Air and Earth as well, for example? If Jaina wanted to summon an earthquake or a hurricane -- could she command Arcane magic to help her do so?

    2. What are the limits of temporal magic? Can it bring the dead back to life, for example? Is it strong enough to reverse planetary destruction -- such as the Sundering or the Cataclysm? Can most magi access other timelines, travel to the past and the future, and can they stop time?

    3. Why can't the magi mass-produce food and water? For the starving populations in Durotar or Westfall? Surely even several powerful archmagi could feed their peoples for a very long time if they tried?

    4. Why can't magi fly, if they can use telekinesis, such as moving objects through the air? Why can't they shape-shift themselves like druids -- like they Polymorph others?

    5. What are some of the greatest and most unique and incredible feats of the arcane you can recall? What has it succeeded, and failed to do?
    Last edited by OwenBurton; 2021-01-01 at 01:31 PM.
    "Always you speak. Never do you listen! You ignore the lessons of Pandaria! You see, there is balance in all things. Wisdom etched in our very fur: Black and white. Darkness and light. When the last emperor hid our land from the rest of the world, he also preserved...our ancient enemy, the mantid. So it is with your Alliance and your Horde. They are not strong despite one another; they are strong BECAUSE of one another. You mistake your greatest strength for weakness. Do you see this?"

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by OwenBurton View Post
    What exactly are the limits of the arcana, within the lore of World of Warcraft? What can it do -- and what can't it do, exactly?

    1. What exactly allows arcane magic to control Fire and Frost? How does the process work exactly? This has never been explained well in the lore -- why only those two elements? Can they control Air and Earth as well, for example? If Jaina wanted to summon an earthquake or a hurricane -- could she command Arcane magic to help her do so?

    2. What are the limits of temporal magic? Can it bring the dead back to life, for example? Is it strong enough to reverse planetary destruction -- such as the Sundering or the Cataclysm? Can most magi access other timelines, travel to the past and the future, and can they stop time?

    3. Why can't the magi mass-produce food and water? For the starving populations in Durotar or Westfall? Surely even several powerful archmagi could feed their peoples for a very long time if they tried?

    4. Why can't magi fly, if they can use telekinesis, such as moving objects through the air? Why can't they shape-shift themselves like druids -- like they Polymorph others?

    4. What are some of the greatest and most unique and incredible feats of the arcane you can recall? What has it succeeded, and failed to do?
    Aluneth told us on many occasions that possibilites of Arcane are great, but mortals wielding it are incapable of reaching it's true potential. Arcane seem to require incredible amount of energy to do more spectacular feats, which also seem that only handful of mortals can handle.

    1. Rogue dalarani wizards used lightning spells and back in vanilla, dalarani mages had earth elemental servants, so I guess you can use arcane to bind all elements. Using elements of water and fire seems to have some kind of tradition though.

    2. I'd say these events would require huge amounts of mana to pull of. Bronze dragonflight would most likely go after you, since they guard timelines from interferences. As we've seen in case of Draenor, these temporal manipulations rather create alternative universes, then reverting major events or ressurecting people for good.

    3. Not sure really. I guess mage food will ease your hunger/thirst, but since it is not real food, it can't sustain you. The closest thing I recall on this matter are Nightborne making arcane infused food, but they still use real stuff for that.

    4. They probably can, but using enchanted discs Is more cool?

    5. Shielding of Suramar to prevent Its destruction is definitely impressive feat.

  3. #3
    Maybe arcane can be used to control temperature thus allowing mages either to freeze moisture in the atmosphere or to manipulate combustions.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by OwenBurton View Post
    What exactly are the limits of the arcana, within the lore of World of Warcraft? What can it do -- and what can't it do, exactly?

    1. What exactly allows arcane magic to control Fire and Frost? How does the process work exactly? This has never been explained well in the lore -- why only those two elements? Can they control Air and Earth as well, for example? If Jaina wanted to summon an earthquake or a hurricane -- could she command Arcane magic to help her do so?

    2. What are the limits of temporal magic? Can it bring the dead back to life, for example? Is it strong enough to reverse planetary destruction -- such as the Sundering or the Cataclysm? Can most magi access other timelines, travel to the past and the future, and can they stop time?

    3. Why can't the magi mass-produce food and water? For the starving populations in Durotar or Westfall? Surely even several powerful archmagi could feed their peoples for a very long time if they tried?

    4. Why can't magi fly, if they can use telekinesis, such as moving objects through the air? Why can't they shape-shift themselves like druids -- like they Polymorph others?

    4. What are some of the greatest and most unique and incredible feats of the arcane you can recall? What has it succeeded, and failed to do?
    1. In a way, mages actually control Earth and Wind with existing spells like Meteor/Dragon's Breath or Cone of cold/Frozen Orb, but more in conjonction with Fire and Frost. I think Earth and Wind are more associated with Shamans and Blizzard wanted a more clear distinction between the classes, and that's why it's this way. It's, indeed, difficult to explain it with lore.

    2. Most time manipulation done by mages are on themselves or around them (Alter Time, Time Warp, Temporal Shield, Master of Time). I'm not sure mages can use temporal magic on others and on the scale of reverting events like the Cataclysm. The Bronze dragons are here to prevent that, either way. I'm not sure either that mage can travel through time per se. It's seems like they can only influence their immediate past/future. Most arcane magic like barriers/cloaks, invisibility or buffs is also mostly use on their person, not on the environnement.

    3. We actually don't know the properties of this kind of food. The food created by mages is labeled as "mana food", meaning it's not real food since it's conjured from mana. Nothing to indicate this in the lore but I think this food is more like an energy drink to quickly regain health and mana, not really food you can live on. It has no properties like most cooked food have (at least for the past few expansions), giving a well fed buff.

    4. Khadgar is morphing into a crow, so we know mages are able to do so. His powers are huge compared to most mages, and he probably learned to do that from Karazhan and Medivh. It's impossible to know if it's possible for other mages. Jaina never did and she's one of the most powerful mages too. I'm not sure mages are able to use telekinesis. Do we think it's the way they control the arcane energies ? The polymorph spells take all control from the target and the animals they turn into are mostly confused. I'm not sure a mage could this spell on himself and still be able to know what he's doing. (That said, I'd love to morph into animals and animated objects !)

  5. #5
    The Highborne and Malygos used lightning, so yes, arcane allows you to control the air.
    The Eredars and Nathrezims used magic to fly in the War of the Ancients.
    Khadgar can transform only coz Atiesh.

  6. #6
    Mechagnome Sagenod's Avatar
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    I wouldn't really answer the questions better than anybody already has. But in regards to incredible feats of users of Arcane magic, I would like to mention Azshara single-handedly holding back the force of the ocean from coming down upon her and the Highborne in her Warbringer. Obviously it ended up being too much for her (we're talking about the ocean), but the fact that she could do that by herself was incredible.
    Check out the Drakonaar, my playable race concept! (WIP -- Looking for artists)


  7. #7
    I've always understood Arcane as being the raw magic, which you then either toss at someone like an arcane missile or blast, or mold to your liking turning it into a fireball or icicle, conjured food, a portal etc.
    Last edited by LarryFromHumanResources; 2021-01-01 at 11:00 PM.
    Corporate wishes everyone a happy new year

  8. #8
    I look at arcane as I look at the stem cells. It can become what you make out of it.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by LarryFromHumanResources View Post
    I've always understood Arcane as being the raw magic, which you then either toss at someone like an arcane missile or blast, or mold to your liking turning it into a fireball or icicle, conjured food, a portal etc.
    It's not true.

  10. #10
    There is further reading in the Schools of Arcane Magic book series in Dalaran.

    Abjuration
    <Penned by the skilled hand of Archmage Ansirem Runeweaver>
    Abjuration is the study of protective magic and one of the most important schools for a young mage to study. The most generalized abjuration spell is the mana shield, a spell that transmutes raw mana into a barrier that protects the caster from attacks. Properly executed, this spell can protect the mage against even the most formidable of attacks - but the mana shield is very difficult for a novice to master. It often takes a mage months of practice to even conjure a simple mana shield, and thus, more basic alternatives exist.
    A series of elemental armor spells were invented to aid the traveling mage in the unfortunate case that he or she might be attacked. These spells require far less raw energy to cast then a mana shield and are more easily maintained over time, but lack the raw potency of the mana shield. Rather than stopping an attack completely, a frost armor spell might simply decrease the effectiveness of the assault. The more advanced armor spells grant other benefits - for example, the potent mage armor spell actually assists the caster in regaining magical power more easily.
    Practitioners of the arcane arts are often ambitious, and we frequently find ourselves in situations where magic may slip just slightly beyond our control. It is for this reason that the ward spells exist. Ward spells are quick, potent incantations to protect the caster against a form of elemental damage - damage which is often caused by the caster attempting one of the other schools of magic. This is why studying abjuration early is so imperative.
    One of the most renowned practitioners of Abjuration magic is Prince Kael'thas Sunstrider. While the prince is quite formidable in all schools of magic, Kael'thas has created a variation of Mana Shield that is practically unsurpassed in among the residents of Dalaran. Also notable is the Arcanist Doan, who has perfected a spell that combines Evocation and Abjuration to shield himself for a short time while preparing a powerfull area-of-effect spell. This Detonate spell provides Doan with a degree of near invulnerability for a precious few seconds, but few mages have the capacity to cast it safely.
    Transmutation
    <Penned by the skilled hand of Archmage Ansirem Runeweaver>
    The ninth and final school of magic is transmutation. It is among the most popular and useful of all of the schools, allowing a mage to manipulate time and space. Perhaps the most iconic Transmutation spell is Polymorph, which allows a mage to turn something - or someone - into something else. Fortunately for many of my students, the effects are not permanent. I've seen more than one unwary apprentice turned into a sheep, pig, or worse - don't even ask what "worse" means.
    The second most famous use for transmutation magic is teleportation. The most basic teleportation spell is blink, and it remains among the most useful. Blink can be used to quickly escape a foe - or save a mage who has accidentally fallen off a cliff. Do not attempt to use blink to escape falling to your death unless absolutely necessary. This is the kind of trick you can only fail once.
    Make absolutely certain you know your destination before attempting to teleport. There's a reason we have very specific spells to teleport to certain locations - attempts to cast a teleportation "on the fly" often result in one very dead mage inside a wall, chair, or another mage. And I don't mean in a fun way.
    Spells that manipulate time also fall into this category. The ever-popular slow fall spell is an excellent alternative to falling to your death (and much more reliable than Blink at this function). More advanced practitioners of the arcane arts can also learn a spell that slows the movements of their enemies. I've heard rumors of a spell that increases movement speed as well, but I've never seen it in practice.
    Lady Jaina Proudmoore is a skilled practitioner of transmutation magic. She has developed a powerful variation of the popular mass-teleport spell that is capable of moving a significant percentage of her army with minimal effort. This spell helps make her extremely unpredictable on the battlefield.
    Enchantment
    <Penned by the skilled hand of Archmage Ansirem Runeweaver>
    Enchantment is the process of imbuing an object - or person - with magical power. Some enchantments are temporary, while others can offer permanent benefits. Enchanting can be difficult to learn, but it is one of the most potentially lucrative forms of magic to study. I highly encourage the study of enchanting, as it is one of the studies of magic that is least likely to culminate in my own destruction.
    Disenchanting is the process of dispelling or removing magic. The dispel magic spell is among the most important in a mage's arsenal, as it can potentially reverse the catastrophic effects of a misfired spell. It is also possible to permanently disenchant a magical item. This produces a unique form of crystallized mana that can be used in the process of imbuing another item with magical abilities. While this can get expensive, it is often one of the best ways for a young mage to study the enchanting process.
    While he has already previously been mentioned for his skill in abjuration, Prince Kael'thas Sunstrider is also considered one of the foremost masters of enchanting in our time. He has not only mastered the creation of potent magical weapons, but the prince has also learned to manipulate these objects remotely, allowing them to fight on their own. This can quickly allow the prince to fight as if he was defended by several skilled guardians even when he is completely by himself. A potent defense, indeed.
    Conjuration
    <Penned by the skilled hand of Archmage Ansirem Runeweaver>


    Conjuration is the study of summoning - both creatures and objects. Ever really, really wanted a fresh drink of spring water when you're in the middle of nowhere? Conjuration, my friend, is the answer. There is nothing more enjoyable for a mage than creating a fresh slice of bread or a glass of water. Just ask any of us!


    More formidable specialists in conjuration can summon several glasses of water at once, or perhaps even a tankard. A few daring wizards have occasionally attempted to summon water without remembering the glass - and thus, the art of summoning water elementals was born. Water elementals are a wizard's best friend. (Felhounds are not, in fact, friendly at all.) A summoned elemental is a formidable ally in combat, a great listener, and they even taste great!


    There are several wizards who have chosen to follow the refreshing path of conjuration. Captain Balinda Stonehearth is a fine example of a mage who has chosen to adapt conjuration magic for battle. Perhaps the most famous conjuror of our time, however, was the beloved Archmage Nielas Aran. Aran was not only noted for being able to summon several elementals at once, he also perfected a recipe for conjuring sparkling cider. It should be noted that Nileas Aran was no simple jester. That's what magic is all about.
    Divination
    <Penned by the skilled hand of Archmage Ansirem Runeweaver>


    Divination is the school of magic dedicated to gathering information. Powerful divinations can allow the mage to see targets from a great distance, or even view what may normally be invisible. One of the most common uses of divination magic is scrying, which is the art of seeing something that may be far away - perhaps even on another plane of existence.


    I'd like to take this time to remind my apprentices that scrying pools are not a toy. They are absolutely not to be used for displaying students of the opposite sex on a pay per view basis. Consider this your last warning.


    The legendary archmage known as Medivh is perhaps the greatest known master of divination. His potent spells allowed him to peer into the world of Draenor from our Home in Azeroth - and perhaps even beyond. We can only speculate at the true depths of the power that Medivh once held.
    Illusion
    <Penned by the skilled hand of Archmage Ansirem Runeweaver>
    Illusion is the art of deceiving reality itself. The mists of illusion can make a mage invisible or inaudible to the world or twist the image of a location into something entirely different. Illusion can be used for disguise or manipulation, but beware, spells to counteract illusions exist in the divination school. It is not viable to base your entire career on illusionary magic.
    Contrary to popular belief, illusions are far more than mere parlor tricks. The spell of invisibility is among the most integral in a battle mage's repertoire, as you will often find yourself in dangerous situations and in need of a quick method for a strategic retreat. Illusions can also be used to deceive your opponents into thinking that you are elsewhere, or even trick your enemies into fighting each other. This is no easy task, but the accomplished illusionist can turn allies into enemies - and his or her own enemies into allies.
    The former archmage Jandace Barov - may her soul rest in peace - was an excellent example of a talented illusionist. In life, she developed a spell that displayed several images of her body that were nearly indistinguishable from her real form. These images duplicated her actions from different locations, making it nearly impossible for her enemies to find her. It was almost infallible. Which brings me to another lesson - almost is simply not good enough.
    Last edited by Razion; 2021-01-19 at 07:40 PM.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Sagenod View Post
    I wouldn't really answer the questions better than anybody already has. But in regards to incredible feats of users of Arcane magic, I would like to mention Azshara single-handedly holding back the force of the ocean from coming down upon her and the Highborne in her Warbringer. Obviously it ended up being too much for her (we're talking about the ocean), but the fact that she could do that by herself was incredible.
    Yet Suramar and Eldre'Thalas withstood the Sundering completely -- Azshara's shield collapsed after about several minutes.

    I think Azshara should have tried --
    1. A mass teleporting spell, teleporting the city to another region, as far away from the Sundering as possible
    2. Lift Zin-Azshari into the skies, like the humans did with Dalaran, safe from the flood
    3. Try to manipulate time or shunt them into an alternate reality or pocket dimension like the Ambermill magi were able to do
    "Always you speak. Never do you listen! You ignore the lessons of Pandaria! You see, there is balance in all things. Wisdom etched in our very fur: Black and white. Darkness and light. When the last emperor hid our land from the rest of the world, he also preserved...our ancient enemy, the mantid. So it is with your Alliance and your Horde. They are not strong despite one another; they are strong BECAUSE of one another. You mistake your greatest strength for weakness. Do you see this?"

  12. #12
    Mechagnome Sagenod's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OwenBurton View Post
    Yet Suramar and Eldre'Thalas withstood the Sundering completely -- Azshara's shield collapsed after about several minutes.

    I think Azshara should have tried --
    1. A mass teleporting spell, teleporting the city to another region, as far away from the Sundering as possible
    2. Lift Zin-Azshari into the skies, like the humans did with Dalaran, safe from the flood
    3. Try to manipulate time or shunt them into an alternate reality or pocket dimension like the Ambermill magi were able to do
    Suramar was shield by the Eye of Aman'thul, a Titan artifact. Eldre'thalas took a spell woven by the combined might of Tortheldrin and his followers. Azshara held back the ocean by herself. Albeit it was for a certain amount of time. We don't know exactly how long so you can't say "only about several minutes." Not sure why you took a reductionist viewpoint regarding my reply, lol I was merely stating an incredible feat of Arcane power. Not the greatest perhaps, but one person being able to do the things Azshara is capable of, and the very fact that she is one of the most powerful beings on Azeroth to begin with, is testament to the power of the Arcane.

    And those other possibilities certainly would have been better but that would have required more time to plan than she had, considering she was busy being a megalomaniacal tyrant who was consumed with the prospect of becoming queen of the cosmos.
    Check out the Drakonaar, my playable race concept! (WIP -- Looking for artists)


  13. #13
    It's not true.
    I also thought what Larry said was the case. Do you have a source?

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Devonitar View Post
    Maybe arcane can be used to control temperature thus allowing mages either to freeze moisture in the atmosphere or to manipulate combustions.
    Or perhaps it is using raw arcane energy in a rapidly frozen or sped up version?
    "Always you speak. Never do you listen! You ignore the lessons of Pandaria! You see, there is balance in all things. Wisdom etched in our very fur: Black and white. Darkness and light. When the last emperor hid our land from the rest of the world, he also preserved...our ancient enemy, the mantid. So it is with your Alliance and your Horde. They are not strong despite one another; they are strong BECAUSE of one another. You mistake your greatest strength for weakness. Do you see this?"

  15. #15
    If I remember right, draenei mages used arcane lightning during Rise of the Horde and then Lightforged mages on Argus during Legion used arcane lightning. Not sure if this functions the same as the lightning magic shamans use or not though.

  16. #16
    Herald of the Titans msdos's Avatar
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    Medivh used an arcane storm in the movie and was using it to ward off the Fel. I think it can be used to manifest physical force, which explains why it could expel the Fel completely from a body physically. Lothar was able to collide with it without it destroying him also.

    Seems like it falls more under the school of gravity and energy, mind over matter and all that, but it's specific properties are tailored to whatever the caster intended (protection from Fel for example).

    I agree with the people in here who said they always thought it was "raw magic" that can be manipulated. In D&D based games Astral and Arcane are similar.
    Last edited by msdos; 2021-01-22 at 06:39 AM.

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