- Arcane Subtlety – now reduces threat generated by all spells and effects by 5/10% and arcane spells and effects by an additional 15/30%. The dispel protection remains the same.
- Arcane Focus – now applies to all spells, instead of just arcane.
- Arcane Stability – reduced to three ranks for the same effect, and now applies to Evocation.
- Torment the Weak and Student of the Mind have swapped places in the arcane tree. Torment the Weak now only grants a 3/6/9% boost to damage (down from 4/8/12%).
- Spell Impact now also applies to frostbolt, arcane barrage and arcane missiles.
- Arcane Stability – now increases spell damage and critical strike chance by 2/4/6, up from 1/2/3%.
- Mind Mastery and Arcane Mind have both been reduced to three talent points for the same effect.
- Incineration – now also applies to Frostbolt and Ice Lance.
- Burning Determination – now also reduces the duration of stun effects and disorients by 15/30%.
- Improved Scorch – now also increases the damage dealt with Fireball, Frostfire Bolt, and Scorch by 1/2/3%.
- Impact – stun effect has been increased to 3 seconds.
- Molten Shields – in addition to it’s current effect, your Molten Armor now grants 20/40% of your resilience as critical strike rating.
- Playing With Fire – instead of increasing spell damage taken by 1/2/3%, now reduces spell damage taken by 4/7/10% as long as Molten Armor is active.
- Blazing Speed – now immediately finishes the cooldown of your Blink spell when this talent procs.
- Combustion – redesigned. Renamed Burnout. Increases your critical strike chance with fire spells by 50% while costing 20% more mana to cost. This effect lasts 15 seconds.
- Fiery Payback – now also triples the damage of Molten Armor when below 35% health.
- Firestarter – now provides an instant cast effect to Flamestrike or Scorch. If Scorch is used for this proc, it has a 100% critical strike chance.
- Burnout – renamed Combustion, and the additional mana cost effect has been removed.
- Dragon’s Breath – the area of effect of this spell has been increased to match that of a talented cone of cold spell.
- Winter’s Chill – in addition to it’s current effect, now also increases the damage dealt by Ice Lance by 10% per rank on targets of a higher level than you.
- Brain Freeze – now grants an instant cast, mana free Frostfire Bolt instead of Fireball.
Anyway, those are are my ideas for what should happen to the mage trees to try and solve our little issues.
Fireball specs currently have mana issues. As it stands now, neither Blizzard’s changes nor my ideal ones actually provide a proper fix to it, merely a bandaid.
But seriously, what was the line of thinking behind the ignite change? Did they just forget Burnout existed? I mean, c’mon! Fire mages have mana troubles… you have a talent designed to cost them more mana… it isn’t possible for this to be more obvious!
Not to mention how broken the Ignite mana return is. Considering the Replenishment nerf with this patch, it’s a very small buff (in the area of 30mp5), and that’s assuming that ignite ticks properly every 2 seconds.
Which, of course, it won’t. Let’s say a fire mage, I dunno, crits again before the first tick of Ignite happens. What happens? Well, ignite refreshes, resetting the duration, meaning the mage doesn’t get any mana.
It’s basically exactly the same problem frost mages had with replenishment.
We now know from the Mage Q&A that Blizzard is actually ok with us having to go into the arcane tree to get those talents in there.
Let’s get this straight. Most of us are not actually all that concerned with spending 15, 18 points in the arcane tree. What we’re concerned with is that the talent is so necessary to our DPS, we literally waste points to get there, and even then, it’s completely out of our control whether or not we even get the effect.
But hey. Fine. So change up the early arcane tree so it’s actually attractive to go there.
Ideally, the early tree of every tree would be attractive to every other tree, but most classes operate under the principle that one tree is good for all the others.
Consider that all shamans want a piece of the enhancement tree, all priests want some discipline, all druids need some restoration, and all warriors want arms.
Natch, a little extra threat reduction boost for fire mages (one of the very few specs in the game that actually have threat issues) while keeping arcane threat reduction the same. Allowing that hit talent be global allows for mages to have access to 6% hit from talents, if they really need it, but more importantly, it gives fireball mages access to a hit talent.
Oh yeah, and a little extra mana efficiency will help fire’s mana issues just a smidge. Not enough to be a fix, but hey, it’s a bandaid. Nothing wrong with first aid.
Torment the Weak, as you noticed, is available a little earlier. It’s been weakened a little, as it requires somewhat less investment to get. It could probably stand to be nerfed a little more, actually, so long as that extra damage is buffed up elsewhere.
In my case, I added the missing frostbolt damage to Spell Impact, beefed up a deeper arcane talen, and let Imp. Scorch increase the damage of Fireball/Frostfire Bolt/Scorch by the same amount it currently increases their crit chance.
In total, the adjustments to TtW results in a slight buff to frost and arcane damage, a tiny buff to frostfire damage, while fire damage stays the same.
Speaking of arcane, the tree is bloated. No way around that, this is fact. Trim a couple of those big talent dumps, and now the arcane mage has an additional four talent points to goof around with. Nothing huge, like boomkins and prot paladins got earlier in wrath, just a little bit of fat trimming.
The frost tree… well, I only really have a couple ideas for here. The tree itself is actually pretty damn good. Adding frostbolt to Spell Impact would help raid viability a little.
The Winter’s Chill thing is something I’ve had kicking around in my head for a while. With Winter’s Chill fully stacked, thus giving ice lance a 50% damage boost, coupled with the glyph, should get ice lance into something more than worthwhile to cast when FoF procs.
I get Blizzard’s stance that having stuff that works differently in PvP and PvE is confusing… but seriously, come now. This is an old game, with an old, highly experienced, highly knowledgeable player base. Sure, there may be new players, but they are outnumbered by the old ones.
I promise we won’t be confused.
Though some may complain we’re just getting a copy paste of paladin mechanics.
The fire tree was the most interesting to toy around with.
I struggled for a bit with buffing up the early fire tree stuff, like Burning Determination and Molten Shields, but really, a mage has to make a choice there.
Sure, a frost mage could get Burning Determination and Impact, but they’d give up silence and Torment the Weak. Sure, you could go deep enough to pick up Molten Shields, use molten armor and gain a HUGE crit increase, but you’d be, again, giving up TtW and all the stuff mage armor gives you.
Yeah, using molten armor and getting Molten Shields is going to give you something in the area of 300 critical strike rating, if not more, but you give up a lot to use it. It evens out, I think.
Also, the Combustion change wasn’t really all that imaginative. It’s basically a copy paste of Arcane Power, except it applies to only fire spells. Combustion, as is, is horribly outdated and utterly useless in today’s raiding world. Sure, it’s not a very imaginative change, but it’s still a good one.
And hey, you can’t deny the fire tree would be really fun to try in PvP if it looked like that.
Anyway, feel free to add your own thoughts, bathe in the awesome, lambast my idiotic ideas, or weep that such changes will never happen.