Monday, July 30, 2007

Arcane Brilliance: Pyromaniacs unite!

It's Arcane Brilliance time again, and we're back with our third installment on the three types of mages. We've already talked about some helpful aspects and defining characteristics of both the Arcane and the Frost mage. Now we turn to the Firestarters among us.

About two weeks ago I actually respecc'd from Arcane/Frost to Arcane/Fire because I decided to get into raiding, returning to my roots as I originally played a fire mage. I'm still playing a blended spec, but my dps automatically went up a hundred points. Why is that? Because the fire tree is where the damage is at. Originally I was concerned that I wouldn't be able to change my frost-loving ways, but after one instance run I can confirm I am hooked on the flame. I really do miss the mana efficiency of my previous spec, but what I noticed as I burned down Bladefist without batting an eye, was that with a good potion supply and a reasonable spell rotation I was sitting pretty. Yes, I am drinking after every fight, but when you're critting like crazy, a girl builds up a thirst.

The Fire mage isn't about mana efficiency, or control, they are all about burning things to a crisp, damaging their foes into oblivion. If anyone has ever been one-shotted with a Pyroblast in the arena as I have, you'll know what I mean. I myself have started a new love affair with the fire talents, the first being Combustion. It's weird to think that I have come full circle back to the days when I obsessively hit this talent every time it came up, but I have. My god, how did I ever survive without Blast Wave? I recall it being my absolute favorite spell when I first got it oh so long ago, and I am very grateful to have it back again.

There is a small amount of control when you beef up Impact as your target has a chance for stunnage, and that few seconds really can make a difference. But I find that the control of the Frost mage is pretty much negated by the increase in damage that the Fire talents contain. Fire Power, Ignite, Incinerate, among other spells, all increase your fire damage. I have noticed now that instead of my total spell damage being higher across the board as I had with my Frost spec, I now have my fire and arcane damage increased, so that I have greater dps by virtue of my more efficient plusses to spell damage.

I am currently running in a Kara group with a full fire mage, who out damages me on nearly every pull. For this reason, I am considering trying the 61 points, but my debate lies in the viability of Dragon Breath versus the utility of Presence of Mind. Having that instant cast Pyroblast is pretty sweet. Pyromaniacs out there, do you recommend the blending of Arcane with Fire talents, or do you prefer the purity of a 0/61/0 spec?

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